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Hansen Center openings begin!

Duluth's most anticipated retail center in quite some time is finally coming to life after a year of construction. Three of the four tenants for the Hansen Center have officially opening for business. We've only had a chance to tour one, but can't wait to see the others!

The Vitamin Shoppe opened right at the end of December as the first official retailer of the Hansen Center project. They're located in one of three retail buildings that is that is located closest to the neighboring Wendy's restaurant (which is closed for renovations... that's a whole other story!);. They won't be the only one in the building though as Sleep Number also recently moved in next door. We stopped by the new Vitamin Shoppe and were quite impressed. It's big, yellow, and filled with vitamins... as one would expect we hope. We've tour the concept store at various locations in the Twin Cities, but were greatly impressed to see the new prototype shown in Duluth. It's quite large, very modern, and much easier graphically to find the perfect vitamin or supplement for your needs. The store houses every vitamin under the sun, along with supplements, energy drinks, powders, etc. So if your health conscious mind can dream it... it's probably at The Vitamin Shoppe.

Verizon Wireless opened at the very end of January marking their journey from their temporary home at the Miller Hill Mall (due to flood damages at their original store) finally complete . Their new store debuted as the first Verizon Wireless "Smart Store" prototype in northern Minnesota and employees 16 people. Here's what you'll notice is different. First office, the store feels huge (it's 3,600 square feet), that's due in part to the better organization, higher ceilings, and ultimately just the clean modern design. But's not only bigger, but also organized far better as we just mentioned. Instead of grouping products simply by types, there is a more interactive approach taken to the store design. There are different areas scattered about the represent daily aspects of life. In each of these areas you'll find the perfect electronics to make this daily tasks just a little easier. The store features a modern design and closely resembles Verizon Wireless' new Destination Store at Mall of America. Check it out!

Sleep Number has also officially made the move from the Miller Hill Mall. Boy, oh boy, will you notice a difference too! This no longer is the Sleep Number store that you were used to. It's huge. 3,500 square feet to be right. Yeah it's a little dramatic of a change from basically the closet their old store was located in. But trust us, it's one you'll appreciate. Sleep Number is now in a space that is almost four times the size. What does this mean for you? Well first off, happier employees who now have more space to room... not to mention natural daylight. But for you it means more bed space, which intern means you have more options to try out in order to find that bed that literally feels like a cloud. It also means that the "exclusives" will finally have arrived to Duluth. Everyone likes an exclusive product... let alone an exclusive bed. There's also more retail space for other various products/accessories that will help you create the perfect sleep experience. Customers will also take notice in other added conveniences such as bathrooms, drinking fountains, and sitting areas.

Lastly, but not the least by any means, Panera Bread will open up shop by the end of this month or early march. They're currently in the process of hiring 80 people, so if you need a job and love bread... go to their website. Plus, don't forget this location has a DRIVE THRU Now let us be honest... that opening will be a whole story in itself. We can't even begin to contain our excitement! Until then we will all wait eagerly for those delicious cookies, bread bowls, soups, sandwiches, salads, croissants, bagels... should we stop now or later?

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