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by Jennifer Robison

The Las Vegas economy hasn’t yet recovered from the beating it took during the nation’s recession.

Sure, visitor volumes have been climbing back to their pre-recession levels for more than a year, but tourism numbers were still down 1.2 percent through May when compared with the first five months of 2007, according to numbers from the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority. Tourist spending remains below peak levels as well.

And then there’s all that bad press, with national magazines from Time to Newsweek to Forbes writing about Las Vegas’ especially sour economy. Even The New York Times wrote as recently as October that Las Vegas was “staggering under a confluence of factors” that left the city out of any national recovery.

But don’t tell that to TopShop.

The British clothing retailer announced Thursday that it plans to open a flagship store in Las Vegas at Fashion Show mall on the Strip. The 20,000-square-foot store will house TopShop for women and TopMan for, well, men. It’s scheduled to open in March with 170 employees.

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