EUR 18 mln Renovation of Allee Shopping Center Completed

Retail

The nearly EUR 18 million renovation of the Allee Shopping Center in Budapest has been completed. The modernization featured the redevelopment of both interior and exterior spaces, as well as extensive sustainability investments.

Under the management of Multi, and under the ownership of Allianz institutional investors represented by Allianz Real Estate and CBRE IM, the shopping center underwent significant refurbishment starting in 2020, with works continuing despite the COVID pandemic. The investment is aimed at maintaining Allee's leading position in an increasingly competitive market.  

After the renovation, the Breeam rating of the shopping center operator Multi Corporation has been upgraded from "very good" to "outstanding". Allee is the first shopping center in Hungary to achieve the highest Breeam rating. At the same time, the facility's environmental performance was also rated "excellent".

Luca Maganuco, senior managing director of Multi in Italy, Hungary, and Slovakia, explains: "Allee is the first shopping center in Hungary and the Central Eastern European region to have undergone such a significant transformation to both increase the visitor experience and enhance sustainability. We are thrilled with the result and the 'outstanding' rating from Breeam-In-Use."

The refurbishment has seen the food court expanded and redesigned, the offer has been made even more colorful with the addition of new restaurants and cafés, and the number of seats has been doubled. Three distinct, dining areas with different atmospheres, together with a family dining and play area, provide a total of 750 guests with a comfortable dining experience. 

As part of the renovation of the interiors, the two atriums of the building have been given a spectacular spatial installation: the three-element ceiling installation "Staccato", which is part of the entrance on Október 23. utca, was installed last fall. The work of art, consisting of aluminum mosaics, was conceived by Hungarian artists and craftsmen reinterpreting three world-famous paintings by Pál Szinyei Merse.

The chain curtain system, which also serves as a light filter, installed in the atrium on Váli út, is another novelty. In addition to the interior renovation, special attention was also paid to the renovation and modernization of the bathrooms, according to a press release sent to the Budapest Business Journal.

The overall planning, coordination, and implementation of the project were carried out by Multi's own architectural and design team, TTDesign. 



The redevelopment has also made Allee greener: the lighting in the communal areas of the building has been replaced with energy-efficient LED lights, the glass roof has been covered with insulating film and a 710 sqm solar park is currently being installed. In addition, the entire air conditioning system has been made energy efficient, which will significantly reduce energy consumption. 

Lars Fröhling, head of asset management North & Central Europe at Allianz Real Estate, said. "A positive user experience is fundamental within retail as the sector continues its recovery post-pandemic. That we have been able to achieve this while simultaneously hugely increasing the asset's sustainability, thereby contributing to our decarbonization goals, is very exciting."

The investment will reduce the annual energy consumption of the facility by 1.8 million kWh and carbon dioxide emissions by an estimated 660 tonnes. Since 2019, Allee Shopping Center has been using only electricity from renewable sources. 

Philippe Brand, senior portfolio manager at CBRE Investment Management, added, "The renovation has been transformational and Multi Corporation did a great job creating an enjoyable and engaging experience for customers, while at the same time improving energy efficiency and reducing carbon emissions in the shopping center. We are incredibly proud that Allee Center provides the local community with an exceptional and highly sustainable shopping center."

In addition to the technical upgrades, the green areas have been significantly increased, the most spectacular of which is the 17 m high, 65 sqm wall of live flowering and evergreen plants at the entrance to the shopping center from the Kőrösy József promenade. The innovative green wall produces oxygen, binds carbon dioxide, captures dust, and can significantly increase the humidity in its surroundings, thus cooling the air.

Allee Shopping Center, located in the heart of District XI, houses more than 160 shops, a 13-screen multiplex cinema, restaurants, offices, and a fitness center, as well as a renovated underground car park with 1,200 parking spaces for cars. The multifunctional complex attracts over 13 million visitors a year and is one of Budapest's most popular shopping centers. 

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