Spring 2012
SRR’s 15th Annual Visual Victories Awards

Awards Presented

  • Best Cart Display
  • Best Kiosk Display
  • Best Promotional Display
  • Best Store Design
  • Best Store Signage
  • Best Use of a Prop
  • Most Improved Retail Display

If there’s one thing that can make an instant impression and boost sales, it’s a beautifully merchandised cart. Specialty Retail Report knows that high-impact visual merchandising is key to success in the industry. And we realize it takes a lot of effort to create a visually arresting presentation. Our continuing commitment to recognizing these outstanding efforts by stellar professionals in the field brings us to our 15th annual Visual Victories Awards.

The sponsors of our 15th annual Visual Victories Awards—Glimcher Realty Trust and Ivanhoe Cambridge—also recognize the vital importance of quality visual merchandising. At every one of their centers an emphasis on beautiful merchandising has consistently delivered results.

Glimcher Realty Trust is a leading U.S. REIT based in Ohio. Ivanhoe Cambridge is a premier Montreal-based development and management firm. We thank these industry veterans for their sponsorship of the awards. By sponsoring the awards, they join Specialty Retail Report in recognizing the outstanding effort it takes to make every cart, kiosk and inline store look its very best.


Our panel of judges represents a diverse cross-section of the specialty leasing industry. We thank them for their valuable contributions in helping make the contest a success.

Aldynai Yumbuu
Aldynai Yumbuu
Commercialization Manager
Jones Lang LaSalle-Russia
Avishag Ravid
Avishag Ravid
Marketing Strategist
Uniluv Marketing
Anita Saleh
Anita Saleh
Vice President,
Specialty Leasing
The Taubman Company
David Miskin
VP, Visual Presentation
and Design
General Growth Properties
Denise P. Monahan
Specialty Leasing Manager
Heather Campbell
Heather Allen Concepts Inc.
Jac Crawford
Chief Operating Officer
Creations Global Retail
Jennifer Barker
Specialty Leasing Manager
Julia Dow
Manager, Specialty Leasing
& Partnerships
Ivanhoe Cambridge
Karie Chitwood
National Accounts Manager
Jones Lang LaSalle Americas
Lori Lesko
Director of Real Estate
Calendar Holdings LLC
Marie A. VanDrisse
Executive National Account Manager
FC Dadson Inc.
Maya Amitzy
Account Manager
Nova Point of Sale
Sarah Becker
Specialty Leasing Manager
Gurnee Mills
Suzanne Cayley
Vice-President, Specialty Leasing & Partnerships
Ivanhoe Cambridge

Best Cart Display

First Place

Mo’s Cakes
Retailer: Mariolga Calderon
Location: Dolphin Mall, Miami, FL
Center/Owner: The Taubman Company
Entry submitted by: Lisa Wilcox, Specialty Leasing Agent
Visual Merchandiser: Helga Tapias, Melon Design Agency

The use of color and branding makes this RMU a winner. The eye-catching use of the red/brown/white color combination and a symmetrical design attract the customer to sample the wares. The combination of different fabrication materials and fixtures is harmonious with the graphic elements and images. A creative use of images, graphic elements, and props highlights the structure of the RMU, yet doesn’t overpower the product presentation. The variety of different levels for the product entices the customer to sample and shop the cart. Especially useful in this regard is the sign encouraging customers to sample the product—particularly important for grab-and-go food, says Sarah Becker. The price point tags in the winning display are also very well done, Becker adds.

Second Place

cart-2-HammondsHammond’s Candies
Retailer: Lori Schuman
Location: Denver International Airport, Denver, CO
Owner/Manager: Provenzano Resources, Inc
Entry submitted by: Gary Gilliard
Visual Merchandiser: Danielle Hopper, Hopper Studios

The large variety of different candy is merchandised in an “easy-to-shop“and “easy-to-maintain” format on the RMU. By using the color of the candy and packaging as the organizational tool, the product presentation becomes “eye candy.” The large vertical (and colorful) image of the candy works well to draw customers. Jennifer Barker points out that the merchandise is displayed not only by type but also color and size, which makes it easy to find what customers are looking for. The use of colored pinstripes in the backdrop adds a nice finish to the display as well. Suzanne Cayley loved the attention to detail in the product layout and the use of the variety of packaging and sizes. “It isn’t likely that anyone [can walk away] without purchasing something,” she said.

Third Place

cart-3-BabyGroceryStoreExpressThe Baby Grocery Store Express
Retailer: Darren Gann
Location: Southpark Mall, Charlotte, NC
Center/Owner: Simon
Entry submitted by: Bethany Jaeger
Visual Merchandiser: n/a

This unit demonstrates the elements of good RMU presentation. By a simple use of color and clean, organized merchandising, the large variety of small products is appealing. The RMU also shows how to effectively display inventory without it becoming overwhelming to the eye, while at the same time conveying an impression of fullness. The use of wire baskets to corral potentially unruly objects, works really well. Notice how products are arranged by color in even the unlikeliest of places. A well-executed logo adds to the professional look.

Best Kiosk Display

First Place

Retailer: American Kiosk Management
Location: North Star Mall, San Antonio, TX
Center/Owner: General Growth Properties
Entry submitted by: Linda Johansen-James
Visual Merchandiser: Linda Johansen-James

The combination of images, color and graphics make the Proactive kiosk a standout in a mall setting. The contrast of the white and black counter/fixtures highlighted by the backlit images draws the customer to the kiosk. The large signs and oversized images are easy to read across the mall. The kiosk‘s footprint gives the intimate feeling of a salon. At the same time, the clean orderly merchandising makes it shopper-friendly.


First Place

Retailer: Angie Pantazakos
Location: Rockland Centre, Montreal, QC
Center/Owner: Ivanhoe Cambridge
Entry submitted by: Martine Delisle, Manager, Specialty Leasing & Partnerships
Visual Merchandiser: n/a

Following its brick-and-mortar counterparts, the Gregio kiosk reflects the current trend of fine jewelry store design. A rich use of lustrous black laminate with an accent of brown zebra wood showcases the sparkling jewelry. Signage is minimal but effective—the large zebra wood ”G” centered under the Gregio sign contrasts with the black laminate counters. The combination of white and black jewelry forms focuses the eye on the merchandise. Bright lighting in the showcase adds to the overall drama of the presentation.

Second Place

Retailer: iPlaynTalk
Location: Westfield, San Diego
Center/Owner: Westfield
Entry submitted by: Ori Ravid
Visual Merchandiser: Ephrat Timor

The bright combination of white and turquoise gives the electronic accessories kiosk a fresh new look for hand-held electronics. The prominent use of white ties closely to the intended audience for these products—the Apple customer. The lighting plays a key role in catching the customer’s eye. The open airy front portion of the kiosk allows the customer and salesperson to interact easily—conduct demonstrations and even play with the product.

Third Place

kiosk-3-RichGirlRich Girl
Retailer: Jan Jin Lee
Location: Mall of America
Center/Owner: Triple Five
Entry submitted by: Lisa Taylor, Specialty Leasing Manager
Visual Merchandiser: Brett Beaudette

This kiosk’s footprint utilizes the open area of the mall. Clean lines and individual showcases organize the jewelry by category, making it easy for the customer to shop. The successful lighting of the jewelry and the kiosk makes it a standout in the large open mall setting. The three arms of the kiosk make the unit readily accessible by customers and allow them to check out a larger selection of merchandise.

Best Promotional Cart

First Place

LA Fitness
Retailer: Will Klocke
Location: Kenwood Town Center, Cincinnati, OH
Center/Owner: General Growth Properties
Entry submitted by: Kelly Koeller, Specialty Leasing Representative
Visual Merchandiser: Jane Schall

This promotional RMU is used for vendor identification, collateral and facility location. Highlighting the yellow in the logo gives the RMU a vibrant color combination and draws customers in. The gym bag emphasizes the message with a readily identifiable prop while the yellow logo towel functions both as brand messenger and visual aid to tie colors together. The large logo and information signs on the sides of the RMU easily relay needed information. The placement of the location sign on the bed of the RMU brings the visuals neatly together.

Second Place

promo-2-FarmersMarketFarmers’ Market
Retailer: Daniel Schmidt
Location: Kenwood Town Center, Cincinnati, OH
Center/Owner: General Growth Properties
Entry submitted by: Kelly Koeller, Specialty Leasing Representative
Visual Merchandiser: Jane Schall

A creative use of props and product simulates an outdoor farmers’ market. Product and imaginative or real props give the promotional RMU a fun, light-hearted air. Colors green and orange emphasize the “natural” message of the farmers’ market being promoted. The floating sign and collateral help to promote the mall’s “out-of-the-box” retailer.

Third Place

promo-3-AlhambraDinnerTheatreAlhambra Theatre & Dining
Retailer: Mark Berman
Location: St Johns Town Center, Jacksonville, FL
Center/Owner: Simon Property Group
Entry submitted by: Diana Kestle
Visual Merchandiser: MediaShare Consulting Group

The use of well-known theater elements, including the drapes, promotes the delightful theme of the Alhambra Theatre & Dining immediately. The wraparound graphics on the base of the cart are easy to see and read. They promote the theater schedule and relay contact information. The flatscreen gives the RMU a modern touch and holiday elements suggest that tickets might make good holiday gifts.

Best Store Design

First Place

Dazzle Up
Retailer: Virginia Aydogdu
Location: Concord Mills, Concord, NC
Center/Owner: The Mills / Simon
Entry submitted by: Christie Sparks, Specialty Leasing Manager
Visual Merchandiser: n/a

This storefront stands out among others in the mall setting. With this original concept, the audience is enticed to come explore the store. The quirky design of the sign is cohesive with the colorful interior. The use of seasonal colors for the interior works with the merchandise assortment and promotes a happy shopping experience. A greeter table at the entrance endorses the retailer’s product choice. The clean, neat merchandising of the large varieties of SKUs (merchandise) makes it easy for the customer to shop. The giant swirl lollipops serve as whimsical props underscoring Dazzle Up as a whimsical place to shop.

Second Place

Store-design-2-DogHouseThe Dog House
Retailer: Jillian Plaster
Location: Town Square Las Vegas, Las Vegas, NV
Center/Owner: Forest City Enterprises
Entry submitted by: Susan Holland, Specialty Leasing Manager
Visual Merchandiser: n/a

This store has a modern upscale look to it. Creative merchandise finds update the old concept of a pet store. A simple use of color, pattern and contemporary furniture elements gives the store a boutique look and permits the customer’s shopping experience to feel unique. Clean, open merchandise vignettes make the store easy to navigate. Lori Lesko added that the bright red walls provide bold accents, which mingle nicely with the playfulness of the polka dot couch and the chandelier. The inclusion of the tree brings the outdoors inside.

Third Place

store-design-3-ForratsForrat’s Chocolates
Retailer: Marc Forrat / Joe Aiello
Location: Devonshire Mall, Windsor, ON, Canada
Center/Owner: Ivanhoe Cambridge
Entry submitted by: Lori Stuart, Specialty Leasing Manager
Visual Merchandiser: N/A

The storefront promotes the look of a European chocolatier. With a warm color palette and striped awning, the interior design sets the tone for a tasty experience. Note the ceiling tiles which look like chocolate squares! At the back of the store, the customer can watch as chocolates are being made. The glass trays and easy-to-read labels add a clean element for merchandising a variety of chocolates. Anita Saleh pointed out that the tenant seems to have made improvements aligned with what look like pre-existing fixtures.

Best Store Signage

First Place

Signage-1-Flurries-aRetailer: Flurries Sheepskin Inc.
Location: Hillcrest Mall, Ontario, Canada
Center/Owner: Oxford Properties
Entry submitted by: Josie Elfassy, Marketing Coordinator, Flurries Sheepskin
Visual Merchandiser: Claudine Burstin

This sign shows a creative contrast between rusted steel and weathered wood. The primitive materials of the sign and the modern script typeface make the sign attention-grabbing. At the same time, the sign is cohesive with the pre-existing storefront façade of red brick. The materials used for the sign are carried through to the interior of the store. Heather Campbell liked the reclaimed wood backing and the font used.

Second Place

The Dog House
Retailer: Jillian Plaster
Location: Town Square Las Vegas, Las Vegas, NV
Center/Owner: Forest City Enterprises
Entry submitted by: Susan Holland, Specialty Leasing Manager
Visual Merchandiser: N/A

This sign demonstrates the imaginative use of a simple typeface and an outline of a house to create a logo/sign. The “scratchy” outline of the house contrasts with the simple typeface. The “twist” of adding in color to the House outline, reinforces the store name.

Third Place

signage-3-GorillaGamesGorilla Games
Retailer: Chris Kelly
Location: The Mall at Wellington Green, Wellington, FL
Center/Owner: The Taubman Company
Entry submitted by: Mary Ann Hessee, Specialty Leasing Agent
Visual Merchandiser: N/A

This sign is as imposing as the word gorilla—big and in your face. The electronic game customer will be attracted to this effective sign. A combination of the 3-D gorilla face and the curved nature of the sign add excitement to the storefront. Lori Lesko says that even if customers don’t read the sign you know the name of the store thanks to the large gorilla staring at you. The branding message is carried into the store with the gorilla logo and recurring use of colors.

Best Use of a Prop

First Place

Sugar Queen Cupcakes
Retailer: Lisa Britten
Location: Stonebriar Centre Mall, Frisco, TX
Center/Owner: General Growth Properties
Entry submitted by: Elisa Tursi, Business Development
Visual Merchandiser: Daniel J. Slack, 3D Creative

The “carriage” catches the attention of the mall audience and brings them into the store.
Suzanne Cayley says the carriage works off of every girl’s fantasy—to be a princess. The carriage is perfectly executed in terms of color, design, and scale and brings the romance of fairy tales to cupcakes. Even better, it disguises what would otherwise have been a boring self-serve counter. Lori Lesko points out that the detail on the wheels with cupcake silhouettes adds a tasty touch to the prop. Fantastic focal point for the store!


Second Place

Retailer: The Disney Store
Location: Southcentre Mall, Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Center/Owner: Oxford Properties
Entry submitted by: Heather Thomson, Specialty Leasing
Visual Merchandiser: Disney Corporation

Disney’s iconic Mickey Mouse ears are used to very good effect here. The scale of the ears and the footprint of the kiosk work perfectly in the mall location. The entrance and exit “ears” tempt customers to come into the kiosk to explore the Disney Parks experience.

Third Place

prop-3-AirSwimmersAir Swimmers
Retailer: Sam Erciyas
Location: Jersey Gardens, Elizabeth, NJ
Center/Owner: Glimcher Properties
Entry submitted by: Denise Monahan, Specialty Leasing Manager
Visual Merchandiser: Kat Contreras, Kat & Co.

The use of the product as the focal point prop is a creative execution. The size of the fish draws customers to buy the product. The additional “to-scale” props, such as the fish tank, work to emphasize the “swimmer” component of the product.

Most Improved Retail Display

First Place

Engrave UR Memory
Retailer: Rozmee & Shahid Yaqoob
Location: Mall of America, Bloomington, MN
Center/Owner: Triple Five
Entry submitted by: Lisa Taylor, Specialty Leasing Manager
Visual Merchandiser: Cathy Beaudette

The transformation of the Engrave UR Memory RMU is phenomenal! Transferring a merchant from an old cart to a new cart gives the leasing agent and the visual merchandiser a chance to improve the visual presentation. The new RMU has additional caselines to help organize the small merchandise into a shoppable professional presentation. Careful placement of color also helps. A presentation board at eye level on the RMU bed focuses the popular merchandise front and center. The neutral finishes of the new RMU allow the merchandise to shine.


Second Place

Sweet Tooth
Retailer: Angela Moncada
Location: Scarborough Town Centre, Scarborough, Ontario, Canada
Center/Owner: Oxford Properties
Entry submitted by: Jocelyn McCloskey, Specialty Leasing Manager
Visual Merchandiser: Angela Moncada & Ralph Spencer

At times, temp stores lose the focus of who they are and what they are selling. Extraneous merchandise creeps into the store, and all of a sudden the store looks cluttered. By examining what sells and where the prime real estate is in the store, unwanted merchandise is eliminated here allowing customers more room to navigate the store. The use of like fixtures at the front of the store empowers the “greeter concept” and allows the tenant to merchandise a multipoint presentation. Fun props help focus the attention on the greeters.


Third Place

Metro PCS
Retailer: Joe Mamare
Location: The Mall at Wellington Green, Wellington, FL
Center/Owner: The Taubman Company
Entry submitted by: Maryann Hessee, Specialty Leasing Agent
Visual Merchandiser: Robin Bliss and Matthew Grace—Studio G Designs

The creative use of props and color on the renovated kiosk is astounding. The building elements and branded color make a ho-hum presentation into an exciting one. The overall appearance of the RMU is more sophisticated. Sarah Becker points out that the color scheme is much better than before and that the products are more organized, a task especially difficult to achieve with cellphone products.

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