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La Jolla Real Estate…the Retail Market!

By lajollahomes | June 18, 2012

The retail market is again showing signs of slight strength after heading in the wrong direction the first quarter of 2012. The second quarter saw the overall amount of vacant retail space drop by approximately 6,200 square feet compared to where it stood the end of March. This translates to an overall vacancy rate, of La Jolla retail space, of 5.66 %, down from 6.15%.

New tenants entering the La Jolla Retail Marketplace are Kate Space, which will soon be occupying space on Girard Ave., between Georgio’s and White House/Black Market. In addition, Soap Opera has taken up residence at 1025 Prospect St. as will a firm selling specialty ice cream items. That Girard Ave. retail space formerly occupied by La Jolla Gallery will soon be occupied by a firm called Y-3. In addition the specialty watch store Panerai opened on Prospect adjacent to Rocky Mountain Chocolate. Expected to open shortly is the Italian specialty shop Ariccia, which leased space some time ago on Girard Ave. just up from The Pannikan. This shop will be offering unique Italian food products rarely seen in San Diego. Breakaway Cycle is expected to open, prior to the end of the month, on the lower level of La Jolla Galleria at the corner of Fay and Silverado. Breakaway Cycle will be offering up scaled spinning classes. The spinning experience provided by Breakaway will truly be an improvement over what is currently being offered at various local gyms. The newest La Jolla eating establishment, Herringbone, recently opened on Herschel Ave. just across from Seaside Home. Herringbone, which has been packed these past few weeks did a magnificent renovation job at its location, which had been vacant for close to 30 years. It’s also rumored that an Indian Restaurant is taking over the former Sadaf Restaurant site at the corner of Pearl and Cuvier and that El Pescadore will be relocating across the street to the restaurant site at the corner of Pearl and Draper just vacated by Marrakesh. This is all very positive news regarding the commercial retail market in the village.

However, all is not rosy. With the exception of Panera Bakery and the jewelry store, Lawrence Poon, approximately 25,526 square feet of vacant space exists at Wall St. Plaza, the former location of Jacks Restaurant. This one project accounts for 35% of all retail vacancy in La Jolla. Additionally, there is an inordinate amount of vacant space at the entrance to La Jolla’s busy Prospect St. tourist district which begins just West of Cave St. and curves around runs to Girard Ave. There are four adjacent vacancies across the street from Coast Walk and Eddy V’s. It really is unimaginable that all four spaces are currently vacant with the beginning of the heavy summer tourist trade.

The La Jolla office market remains stuck in neutral. Office vacancy increase a tad over 50 basis points and now stands at 12.60%. The main increase in office vacancy occurred at 888 Prospect St., which now has approximately 18,713 square feet of contagious 2nd floor space. Additionally, rumor has it that the 2 building, 2 story office building located at the intersection of Silverado and Ivanhoe, currently owned by Copley Press is about to go into escrow. The assumed buyer is an existing La Jolla tenant who will be occupying a portion of the property and leasing out the balance. The acquisition of the property will cause the amount of available La Jolla office space to be increased by about 20,000 square feet. Hopefully, the La Jolla commercial real estate market will retain its momentum over the upcoming summer months and that additional tenants will keep coming into the village.  Phil Wise

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