Bulgaria Mushrooming Malls Top EU List

Bulgaria ranked first in the European Union in the number of new shopping malls in the first half of the 2010, a report by Cushman and Wakefield consultancy showed.

While in most EU member-states the number of malls is on the slide due to the global economic crisis, their construction has accelerated in Bulgaria, marking a nearly 90% increase over one year.

A similar trend is also witnessed in other Balkan states – Bosnia&Herzegovina, Romania, Slovenia, Serbia and Croatia – but the growth rate there is 5-10%.

The stock of contemporary shopping mall space in Bulgaria doubled in the first six months of 2010 with the opening of five new shopping malls, reaching 452,000 sqm in total, according to a recent realtor report.

Another five shopping mall projects are expected to open until the end of 2010, which will add 126,000 sqm of contemporary stock to the market, according to Colliers International’s retail market overview for the first half of 2010 in Bulgaria.

“Although most of the newly completed retail space in Sofia has generally been absorbed so far, a surplus in markets such as Varna, Ruse and Stara Zagora is expected based on the economic slowdown and the fact that available retail space significantly exceeds potential retail demand”, comments Iglika Yordanova, manager Retail Services at Colliers International.

The opening of new shopping malls affected not only the urban landscape, but the performance of the main High Streets as well.

Brands are concentrating in the malls, where rental rates are lower, pushing overall vacancy to 10% in Sofia, according to Colliers’ report.

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Welcome to RilaDev’s Blog!

In 2006, RilaDev a English Bulgarian homebuilder embarked on one of the most ambitious hotel and residential project in Bansko, Bulgaria, Pirinea Hotel Spa and Residence.

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