New Shopping along the Coast
If you have any doubts about Orange County’s passion for shopping, just look up and down the coast. Two new consumer meccas cut their ribbons in time for holiday buying. Pacific City in Huntington Beach sits beach-adjacent on PCH, with more than half its 60 stores and restaurants still to come through the summer. Outlets at San Clemente overlooks the ocean from the newly developed Marblehead Coastal bluffs, with more than 35 stores open and four water-view restaurants on the horizon.
21010 Pacific Coast Highway, Huntington Beach - Monday-Friday,10 a.m.-9 p.m.; Saturday, 10 a.m.-8 p.m.; Sunday, 11 a.m.-6 p.m. :: gopacificcity.com
A cool and casual 191,000-square-foot, open-air center for shopping, dining and enjoying the ocean view. On-site apartments are in the plans.
Parking is fairly plentiful, with some 900 spaces on two levels of underground parking (free for the first two hours with validation). A handful of 30-minute stalls ($1 per 10 minutes) sits in an adjacent lot. Or, valet: $8 for the first two hours, $4 per 20 minutes after.
With its fourth location in Orange County, Irene’s Story has trendy boutique items for day or night. West of Camden sells its own local brand including onesies for babies. It also carries apparel lines Obey, Level 99, Chaser and Howe, plus unisex shoes by Flossy. Accessorize at the Nook, which offers rings, earrings, bracelets, necklaces and handbags in a wide range of price points from $15 to $100-plus. Top it off at Chico Hats, with a range of chapeau styles from $20 to $65. H&M appeals to the hipster/millennial male, while Tommy Bahamas speaks to a more relaxed crowd.
Take a break from shopping in the center courtyard, where kids play foosball. Various other sitting areas on both levels are good for fueling up, resting up and/or taking in the ocean view.
Simmzy’s offers local beer with its burgers, and Saint Marc Pub-Café, Bakery & Cheese Affinage opens in December. Many of the tempting bites won’t open until early next year: the farmers-market style Local 579 will house seven eateries including The American Dream, Bear Flag Fish Co., Burnt Crumbs, Hans’ Homemade Ice Cream, Pie-Not, Popbar and Portola Coffee Lab.
New to OC
Cherry Hills Market, Chico Hats, The Nook, Saavy Naturals and The Wearhouse are newbies.
Cherry Hills Market mixes shabby chic and French farmhouse styles in its home accessories and seasonal décor. Saavy Naturals carries a natural body-care line that uses food-grade ingredients. The bar soaps ($6-$10), creams ($12) and hand-poured coconut wax candles ($15) are soy-free, gluten-free, vegan and handmade. The Wearhouse offers home decor and apparel for both men and women.
OUTLETS AT SAN CLEMENTE
101 W. Avenida Vista Hermosa, San Clemente, Monday-Sunday, 10 a.m.-9 p.m. :: outletsatsanclemente.com
An outdoor, 500,000-square-foot Spanish-style center with outlet versions of designer brands and discount retailers, plus well-appointed restrooms and wide promenades with ocean breezes.
No shortage of free parking in an open-air lot and a 3,300-space, two-level parking structure. For $5, you can also take it easy and use the valet-parking service.
Designer brand Calvin Klein houses a large storefront with apparel for both men and women, including bags, fragrances and undergarments. Boho-chic styling Daisy Shoppe carries both its Cute and Daisy lines for women at this location.
Watch Station sells designer brands Michael Kors, Marc by Marc Jacobs, Fossil, Diesel and Armani Exchange. For eyewear, Sunglass Hut has brands like Ray-Ban, Oakley and Prada at up to 50 percent off.
O.C.-based retailer Tilly’s offers a wide selection of action-sports apparel, shoes and accessories.
Three courtyards offer a chance for people watching. A VIP lounge with private restrooms, seating and TV areas and a shaded terrace overlooks the center courtyard. A loyalty/rewards program set to launch in 2016 will allow you access to the lounge.
Starbucks and Panera Bread are the only options right now, but Auntie Anne’s and Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory will open later this year, and Ruby’s Diner’s biggest location yet will open in the spring. Plans call for four ocean-view restaurants at the edge of the parking lot, but no deals have been signed yet.
New to OC
Outlets at San Clemente includes 22 newcomers to the county. Some are completely new brands and others are outlet versions of familiar names.
The list includes 2XU, Aerosoles, Chico’s Outlet, Clark’s Outlet, Cole Haan, Columbia Sportswear, Flip Flop Shops, Guess Factory Store, Le Creuset, Nautica, Sun Diego Boardshops, Swarovski and White House Black Market.