GUNWHARF Quays said its Christmas sales were massively up on last year.
The retail and leisure complex has predicted a ‘double-digit’ percentage increase on its trade in December, compared to the same month in 2010.
While trade last year was hampered by snow and ice, this year has seen the retail industry squeezed as shoppers curb their spending.
But Gunwharf has constantly performed well this year, and has continued to draw shoppers from miles around into the heart of Portsmouth.
Centre manager Peter Emery says Gunwharf’s success is key for the city.
He added: ‘Last week’s figures, up until Sunday, showed us we were 10 per cent up on last year in retail and 20 per cent up in the bars and restaurants compared to the same time last year
‘We anticipated it being quite a jump, because last year we were hampered by snow, but I’m not going to be surprised if we see double-digit increases for the whole of December when we get our figures in. The car park was on lock-out every day last week, which is a gauge of how busy we were. The stores have reported excellent sales.’
Looking back over the previous year, the complex has had repeated success as events and attractions, as well as the mix of designer stores, continues to attract shoppers.
Its popularity still thrives nearly 11 years after it opened its doors to the public for the first time – in February 2000.
Gunwharf is on track to see profits surge by the end of this year, from the usual £100m, to around £160m
Gunwharf Quays’ parent company, Land Securities, held the complex up in its annual report as an example of best practice.
Mr Emery said: ‘We are really pleased. Our sister companies are having to be happy with zero growth, sometimes a little bit of negative growth. And the high street is quite a sad looking place to be at the moment. We have been making good headlines but it’s not just good news for Gunwharf, it’s good news for Portsmouth too. That’s important to remember.’