Global jewellery brand Pandora will open a flagship store in Melbourne's Bourke Street mall after signing a million-dollar lease on a four-storey gothic-style brick building next to Spanish fast fashion retailer Zara.
The Copenhagen-headquartered jewellery brand is understood to have signed a lease for nearly $1 million in annual rent at 280-282 Bourke Street.
Pandora has three other stores, in Little Collins Street, Melbourne Emporium and Melbourne Central, that are within a 500-metre radius of its new site.
Bourke Street's mall attracts some of the highest per square metre rental rates in Australia, with some retailers paying up to $10,000 a metre.
New Zealand jewellery chain Michael Hill is understood to pay the mall's highest rent for its corner location on Bourke and Swanston streets.
Pandora will take all four storeys in the building but was only likely to trade from the ground floor that fronts onto the mall, said CBRE's Zelman Ainsworth, who negotiated the lease with colleagues Tan Thach and Samantha Hunt.
Mr Ainsworth said the fact Pandora was opening another store in the city demonstrated the confidence retailers had in bricks and mortar trading.
"There's a lot of noise that online retail is taking over, but look around you," he said.
The shop was previously occupied by American accessory designer label, Nine West.
Other fashion retailers have also been active in Melbourne's CBD.
Italian luxury powerhouse Gucci recently tripled its space at 161 Collins Street in US property group Pembroke Real Estate's building.
Another high-end menswear retailer owned by global giant Louis Vuitton, Parisian brand Berluti, has leased a store at 175 Collins Street.
Burberry, which makes distinctive pattern-based scarves and trench coats first sold in Haymarket in London, has taken 1000 square metres of prime space over two levels in Emirates House, a building midway between Swanston and Elizabeth streets opposite the St Collins Lane mall.
The clamour from retailers is underpinning property sales.
A Collins Street basement space leased to Sires Menswear sold at auction recently for $3.86 million on a building rate around $11,028 per square metre.
The deal, handled by Josh Rutman, Alex Brierley and Max Ruttner, was one of a growing number of below street level sales as retailers and restaurateurs expand beyond traditional ground floor space.
"Retailers are studying the CBD and building retail networks to ensure they are able to best expose their brand and increase retail sales," Mr Ainsworth said.
Pandora sells its jewellery, manufactured in Thailand, in more than 100 countries. Listed on the Copenhagen exchange, its total revenue in 2016 was about €2.7 billion.