Village Square is getting new life breathed into it after Westport Capital bought much of the shopping center from the financially struggling Triple Five in November.
The shopping center, 9400 W. Sahara Ave., has a number of new stores in the works.
"They believe in Las Vegas, and they believe in the center," said Liz Clare, senior director for Commerce Real Estate Solutions, which is working with the new owners of the nearly 600,000-square-foot center.
Enterprises eyeing the center include a yoga studio and a high-end sushi eatery. European Antiques came aboard in November. The European Massage School opened Jan. 2.
Other new ventures include Rocket Fizz Soda Pop and Candy Shop and Bachi Burger, which is to be located near the movie theater. Bachi Burger brings gourmet burgers made with a proprietary marinade to the center. Prices will range from $7.50 to $25.
Still more businesses were in contract negotiations and could not be named.
"We're still trying to wrap our arms around what is going on at the center and get control of (things) after the ups and downs it's been through over this last period," said Colby Durnin, CEO of Sentinel Development Services, which represents Westport Capital.
Patty's Closet joined the shopping center about the time it was due to formally change hands. Rudy and Christal Conception are the franchise owners. They shopped for a Summerlin-area location for about a month before deciding on Village Square.
"Once we were introduced to this location, once we saw it, my husband said, 'This is the place,' " Christal Conception said. "It's a beautiful center."
Her husband said he had no idea of the center being sold until he was alerted to "make out the monthly (lease) check to a different company."
He added that he'd heard there "might be a water feature. It could be a rumor."
Rocket Fizz opened Dec. 30 after moving from its former location near Fort Apache Road and the Las Vegas Beltway. It's nestled near the movie theater. The store targets nostalgia buffs and offers sodas that are hard to find -- Olde Brooklyn Brighton Beach Black Cherry Soda and Stewart's Strawberries N' Cream -- as well as candy bars such as Mallo Cups, Abba-Zabas and 5th Avenue bars.
Franchise owner Sheri Stewart took the 1,600-square-foot slot after negotiating with the management team.
"They were awesome, quick to respond to any (questions)," she said. "And we got a tenant improvement allowance, even though our store is pretty basic."
Her Summerlin-area customers were forewarned of the change in location well before the move.
"They'd tell me, 'We're so glad you're moving closer,' " she said.
Like Rudy Conception, she said she had heard of a possible water feature.
Lauren Roberson, marketing coordinator for the shopping center, said she could not comment on that aspect, nor on whether the center would host community events to bring in shoppers.
"We're totally in the planning stages," she said. "We do have a projected calendar, but it's only on paper right now. But we have a strong hold on what we're doing."
Across the street, the shopping center on the northeast corner of Fort Apache Road and Sahara Avenue has seen the former Smith's store lying vacant.
Daniel R. Adamson, broker for R.O.I. Commercial Real Estate Inc., said he welcomed the activity at Village Square.
"There's obviously some benefit to having a (viable) center across the street," he said.
Adamson said he was encouraged by the economic outlook getting brighter.
Back at Village Square, not all the buzz was new tenants.
"They've engaged architects and (public relations) people and planning ... for special events," Clare said. "They want to change the face of the center, bringing in more common areas, more patio dining, this is all stuff they're discussing ... they're not afraid to spend money on it."
Does that include installing a water feature? Durnin said Westport would be meeting with architects soon to explore the possibility of including one.
Rudy Conception said he was happy to hear there might be special events and upgrades to the complex.
"More attractions would be good for business, not only for us, but for our neighboring businesses," he said. "Anything that brings in more consumers."
Contact Summerlin/Summerlin South View reporter Jan Hogan at firstname.lastname@example.org or 387-2949.