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Retail By City

SofiaBulgaria

city rank #108

City Overview

Sofia is the capital city of Bulgaria and main retail destination in the country. The city covers an area of 246 sq. km and is home to approximately 1.28 million people. The catchment area exceeds the limits of the city as Sofia attracts shoppers in search of the latest fashion trends from all over the country.

Sofia is the main retail destination in Bulgaria with nine existing shopping centers. Currently, there are no projects for shopping centers under construction and the total stock in the capital city amounts to 428,400 sq. m. The Central Department Store (TZUM), which used to function as a shopping center until 2015, has gradually been transformed into an office center, with a few servicing retail stores still operating on two of the floors.

The vacancy rate in the capital is 16.2% in Q1 2017. The average prime rental rates for retail space in the shopping centers in Sofia are between EUR 25-35 per sq. m. per month.

Sofia’s high street retail stock is comprised primarily of ground and first-floor units in mostly residential buildings built in the 1950s and 1960s. Most of the shops have large frontages and good visibility. On average, 22,000 pedestrians per day pass the prime locations on the high street while peak footfall at the busiest locations reaches 32,000 people per day.

Vitosha Boulevard and Graf Ignatiev Street are designated pedestrian streets with retail stores located on each side. The second will undergo a renovation, which includes the replacement of the tram tracks, water piping and the pavement surfaces. Rents for retail space on prime street locations, more particularly Vitosha street, range between EUR 40-70 per sq. m.

Currently, the investors’ interest in Sofia is on a rather high level, with one of the prime shopping centers (The Mall) being acquired by a South African investment fund New Europe Property Investments (NEPI) for a media-announced amount of EUR 180 mln. Interest by South African funds has also been declared for acquiring another two of the leading shopping malls. In April 2017, the Turkish investor Garanti Koza was granted a construction permit for the first phase of its mixed-use development project “Grand Kanyon” in Mladost district, which is expected to offer 30,000 sq. m. of retail space upon its completion in 2020.

Things to do

See

Work

There are several business areas with concentration of institutions, banks and other offices - Centre, Nikolay Vaptzarov/Cherny Vruh, Tsarigradsko shosse, Kambanite, Bulgaria Blvd., Todor Alexandrov.


Rest

Vitosha National Park which is 10 km away from the city center. South park, Borisova gradina and other smaller parks in the city area.


And be seen

Eat

Yafata, Pod Lipite, Hadzhidraganovite Izbi, Kumbare


Drink

Yalta, Black Label, Memento, Raffy


Be Merry

PM, Bedroom, Mascara