Stephanie is the new General Manager of Bullring & Grand Central

Stephanie Lacey was officially announced as the new General Manager of Bullring & Grand Central in December 2018. Having previously held the same role at Cabot Circus in Bristol, as well as a number of other senior roles in the property and retail sectors, Stephanie brings with her a wealth of experience.

 

These are exciting times for the city centre with new developments such as Primark, HS2 and plans for a revamped Moor Street station recently announced. Bullring & Grand Central will be at the heart of all this activity. You must be delighted by these positive developments?

It’s been five months since I joined the team at Bullring & Grand Central and in that time alone I’ve seen some major changes in the city. Birmingham is such an exciting place to be right now; it’s young, vibrant and continually evolving.

As a centre we are really fortunate in that we are in a prime location right in the heart of the city, between New Street and Moor Street stations. Plans for the major refurbishment of Moor Street Station have been unveiled, which if approved, would increase capacity and bring in more tourists, shoppers, and visitors to the city.

We’re delighted to see so much investment in the city, as it all makes Birmingham more attractive to brands, and reinforces its position as the place to be. And we’re seeing that at Bullring & Grand Central; in just the last few months we’ve welcomed huge brands including Arket, BOSS and Calvin Klein, as well as new restaurants including Holy Moly, Comptoir Libanias and @Pizza. All of those add to the city’s compelling dining and retail scene.

We have also secured the first Morphe outside of London, and that’s going to be a huge draw to shoppers all over the region. The brand is one of the big beauty players in the industry, and back in January thousands of beauty fans flocked to the centre to see YouTuber James Charles officially open the store, which is only their second in the brand’s UK portfolio.

 

How can Bullring & Grand Central maintain its position as one of the most-visited retail and leisure destinations?

We work really hard to make the centre as attractive to shoppers as possible. That means constantly reviewing our retail and dining mix to make sure it’s right for consumers, as well as delivering experiences that you can’t get elsewhere.

German eatery Herman ze German, which is famed for its authentic wurst, has opened its first restaurant outside of London in Grand Central, and we’re also welcoming Kitty Café. Kitty Café is the perfect spot for cat lovers as its 30 felines interact with customers whilst they eat. We’ll also shortly be welcoming artisan grill masters Kababji, which will serve a range of healthy street food dishes.

We know that retail is changing and that today consumers want unique and memorable experiences when they go shopping. A key part of that for us is our cultural, arts and entertainment event programme. We’re working with partners like Birmingham Hippodrome and other cultural bodies in the city to take part in city-wide events, including Chinese New Year and St Patrick’s Day.

We also continue to invest in our facilities and last month our newly refurbished Centre Car Park was awarded the Best Car Park Refurbishment accolade by the British Parking Association.

 

The BID is driving collaboration between different organisations for safety and security, marketing and events. How can Bullring & Grand Central play a part in this?

We’ve always worked extremely closely with all our local stakeholders including the Retail BID, and wherever possible have participated in citywide activities and celebrations. Naturally through our city partnerships we have a co-ordinated, joined-up approach on events and marketing.

I’m personally really looking forward to the rest of the year; we have so much still to come including new openings and a full schedule of exciting events. With the landscape changing all of the time, Birmingham is a great place to be.