Somerset Collection
Somerset Collection is an upscale shopping mall, super-regional in size, with over 180 stores located in a Metro Detroit commercial area on 2800 W. Big Beaver Rd. in Troy, Michigan. Developed, managed and co-owned by The Forbes Company, the center is anchored by department stores Nordstrom, Macy's, Neiman Marcus, and Saks Fifth Avenue. More than 180 additional specialty stores and restaurants are located at Somerset, including Tiffany & Co., Louis Vuitton, Barneys Co-op, Crate and Barrel, P.F. Chang's China Bistro, J. Alexander's, Brio Tuscan Grille, McCormick & Schmick's, The Capital Grille, California Pizza Kitchen, and the Peacock Café food court. Somerset Collection is among the most profitable malls in the United States not owned by a real estate investment trust. Mall developers consider Somerset Collection to be among the nation's top privately held mall properties with 2004 annual sales of about $600 million and sales per square foot at $620 compared to the national average of $341, well above the "Class A" threshold. Of the 100 most profitable malls, 76 are owned by real estate investment trusts. Foders has described Somerset Collection as one of the top shopping malls in the United States.

In 1967, Saks Fifth Avenue opened a stand-alone store on Big Beaver Road in the Detroit suburb of Troy. In 1969, a one floor upscale "Somerset Mall" designed by Louis G. Redstone Associates would be built onto the existing Saks, anchored by it and a new Bonwit Teller. Bonwit significantly renovated its store in 1988, only to close in 1990 after the chain went bankrupt. In 1991-1992 the center was renamed Somerset Collection, a second level was added, and Neiman Marcus opened a store on the site of the razed Bonwit Teller. Completed in August 1992, Tiffany's joined at this time as well. Following the success of the revamped mall, co-owners Forbes/Cohen Properties and Frankel Associates opened an all new three-story $200 million 940,000 sq ft (87,300 m 2) expansion across Big Beaver Road in 1996, designed by JPRA Architects. Michigan's first Nordstrom and a Hudson's (now Macy's) anchored the new three-story expansion, named Somerset North. Joining the two malls is a 700-foot (210 m) enclosed bridge with a moving "Skywalk" over Big Beaver Road. Somerset North contains the Collection's food court, and both North and South feature upscale, independent restaurants. Somerset North's Grand Court features a full arched glass dome roof. JPRA incorporated a similar large arched glass ceiling into its design for The Mall at Millenia, another upscale mall in Orlando, Florida also owned by The Forbes Company. The Somerset Collection contains 1,450,000 sq ft (134,700 m 2) of gross leasable area anchored by a 300,000 sq ft (27,900 m 2) Macy's, a 240,000 sq ft (22,300 m 2) Nordstrom, a 160,000 sq ft (14,900 m 2) Saks Fifth Avenue, and a 141,000 sq ft (13,100 m 2) Neiman-Marcus. In December 2009, the Forbes Company which owns Somerset Collection acquired an adjacent site on which an open-air mixed use development known as the Pavilions of Troy has been proposed.

Fountains and sculptures
The mall contains a variety of unique including fountains and sculptures. Sorvikivi Floating Stone fountains are both found at Somerset Collection North in the Grand Court. They were made in Finland and are made out of Amadeus granite, which is a combination of charcoal gray with magenta streaks. The ball weighs more than 2 tons and is 40 inches in diameter. Because of the large surface area, the ball requires very little water pressure to keep it aloft. The amount of pressure required is surprisingly small to keep it aloft; around 10 to 15 pounds per square inch. The water falls into a black granite trough, which sits within a raised base of Mankato stone, a chop-top pyramid five feet high.

Special events
Special events are hosted at Somerset Collection by not only the mall but individual stores. These events include yoga classes, special savings, visiting Santa, fashion shows, and other events.

Technical details

Building Image Levels Area sq ft / m² Summary Somerset North 3 940,000 / 87,300 Both Somerset Collection North and Somerset Collection South feature distinctive design elements and architectural features. An exterior of Cranbrook brick and Mankato stone is combined with interior finishes of marble, woods, a continuous skylight, fountains, stages for the performing arts and a number of original sculptures. Somerset Collection features over 180 shops and restaurants. Of the mall's 180 stores, 78 are unique to this center as the only Michigan location. Stores include Louis Vuitton, Gucci, Ralph Lauren, Neiman Marcus, Saks Fifth Avenue, Tiffany & Co., and Crate & Barrel. The third level of the Somerset Collection North features a grouping of ten eateries which are called The Peacock Cafes, with combined seating for 650 patrons. Somerset Collection North includes restaurants such as The Capital Grille, J. Alexander’s, and California Pizza Kitchen. The Bistro at Macy's and Nordstrom Cafe are also available. Somerset Collection South includes P. F. Chang's China Bistro, Brio Tuscan Grille, McCormick & Schmick's, and the Neiman Marcus Cafe. Somerset South 2 500,000 / 46,500 Macy's 3 300,000 / 27,900 Nordstrom 3 240,000 / 22,300 Neiman Marcus 2 141,000 / 13,100 Saks Fifth Avenue 3 160,000 / 14,900 Moving skywalk 2 700 ft. (213 m.) Access level 2. Spanning Big Beaver Road and integrating the twin centers is a 700-foot (210 m), enclosed, climate-controlled Skywalk. One of the first skywalks of its kind in the country, the bridge features a moving sidewalk to move shoppers between Somerset Collection South and Somerset Collection North. Somerset Collection ( Gross leasable area) 2-3 1,450,000 / 134,700 The mall offers over 180 stores and restaurants, valet parking deliverable to either north or south malls, and a full service concierge staff. The concierge service at includes a variety of services such as gift wrapping, stroller and wheelchair rental, Wi-Fi internet access at the Somerset North Grand Court, Peacock Cafe's, and Somerset South Rotundra.


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