Open up, Sezam! The iconic store “Sezam” in Centrum Marszałkowska is welcoming Warsaw residents again.
On 6 June, we had the pleasure to witness a truly grand opening of the “Sezam” store in Centrum Marszałkowska. The event was accompanied by the inauguration of the retail and services part of the building as well as the unveiling of a plaque commemorating Witold Rowicki, designed by a renowned graphic artist – Andrzej Pągowski.
Moreover, advanced works are also taking place around the building to finish the revitalization of a public passage named after Witold Rowicki, distinguished first director of the National Concert Hall after the Second World War. Centrum Marszałkowska is a unique project on the investment map of Warsaw implemented together by WSS Społem Śródmieście and BBI Development S.A. – the first of its kind building fully integrated with the metro station. The general contractor of the project is Korporacja Budowlana Doraco.
The iconic store, located on level -1 of the building, is now welcoming Warsaw residents again. The store takes up around 700 sq. m. and is equipped with four cash desks. Customers can find an exceptionally wide range of products on offer – there will be as many as 40,000 products made available. The store will be open from Monday to Saturday, 7-22, and on trade Sundays between 8-19.
“It took a great deal of courage to implement such a complex undertaking in a very important place for Warsaw so that to breathe a new life into it. I am proud that thanks to the cooperation of two Polish companies – WSS Społem Śródmieście and BBI Development S.A., we are able to put our “business card” back into use. At the time of “Sezam’s” first opening in 1969, it was our most modern store. Currently, we are also putting in a lot of work to meet the requirements of today’s customers. We could not dream of a bigger gift for the next year’s 150th anniversary of our Cooperative”, says Anna Tylkowska, President of the Board of WSS Społem Śródmieście.
In addition to “Sezam” grocery store, Centrum Marszałkowska offers on its two levels with a total area of 3,400 sq. m., among others, a well-stocked Natura drugstore, Aga Flowers florist, Eleganza clothing store, Inmedio, a restaurant with sushi rolls, a beauty and hair salon, and a store with household appliances accessories. For the convenience of buyers, access to the shopping level -1 will be possible directly from the hall connected with the subway. While the flagship Orange showroom will be waiting for the customers on the ground floor. The shopping and services offer of Centrum Marszałkowska will strengthen the high-street potential of Warsaw’s Easter Shopping Wall, one of the most outstanding achievements of post-war modernism in Poland, which is still strongly associated with trade.
“The Marszałkowska Street shopping route is a natural place for the development of high-street brands and outlets, with local residents expecting it to grow as an alternative to the shopping malls. The very intersection with Świętokrzyska Street can at present see around 200,000 people crossing it at least once a week. The popularity of this destination will increase significantly in the near future, especially when such investments as the revitalized Rotunda building or Museum of Modern Art will commence their functioning and the city will implement its announced strategy for the development of downtown trade and implementation of Zielona Świętokrzyska and Zielona Marszałkowska projects”, says Rafał Szczepański, Vice President of the Board of BBI Development S.A.
Together with the iconic “Sezam” store, Centrum Marszałkowska saw the return of very characteristic decorative elements coming from the original department store. The entrance to the store was decorated with restored ceramic tiles, while the façade of the building has two new “Sezam” neon signs that are copies of the light billboards from 1969. The original neon signs “Sezam” and “Społem” were in May donated to the Museum of Neons on the occasion of the Night of Museums, thus becoming part of the collection of the most beautiful luminous billboards.
All the customers of Centrum Marszałkowska will very soon be able to use a revitalized public passage of Witold Rowicki that will be opened alongside the launch of new services outlets on the ground floor of the building. Witold Rowicki was the initiator of reconstruction of the nearby building of the Warsaw Concert Hall destroyed during the World War II. The publicly accessible space will be filled with small architecture elements, shrubs and flowers that will provide for a moment of respite in the heart of the city.
“We are extremely satisfied with the effects of many years of work at Centrum Marszałkowska. We have managed to take advantage of all the advantages of the location of this building at the intersection of two metro lines, and we have also made the building open to the city and people thanks to the rich trade and services offer, in which the new edition of the iconic “Sezam” plays the most important role. Thanks to the excellent location and reasonably easy access by all means of communication, Centrum Marszałkowska will quickly become a new favourite place for quick and comfortable shopping”, indicates Michał Skotnicki, President of the Board of BBI Development S.A.
Particularly noteworthy is the fact that Centrum Marszałkowska is the first building in Poland to be fully integrated with a metro station. The implementation of this unprecedented solution required the signing of a tripartite agreement between the investor, the city and the Municipal Transport Authority. The consultations lasted a year and were preceded by long-term talks with a dozen of entities – city representatives, ZTM, ZDM, BGN, Warsaw Metro, metro contractor and many others. One of the exits from the metro station has been moved from the pavement area into the arcade of Centrum Marszałkowska, which allowed to save the pedestrian crossing and a tram stop in one of the most important communication routes of the capital.
“The implementation of Centrum Marszałkowska was a huge challenge in terms of the engineering. The building was built in a very short time on a small plot of land in the city centre next to a functioning subway line. The plot has also foundations and remains of pre-war buildings, which has further raised the bar for our specialists. I am extremely proud of our team, which has demonstrated high craftsmanship skills and professionalism, and at the same time I want to thank our investors for the trust they have put in us”, said Andżelika Cieślowska, President of the Management Board of Korporacja Budowlana Doraco.
To sum up, it is worth pointing out that Centrum Marszałkowska is a modern office and commercial complex located at the intersection of two metro lines, directly connected to the Świętokrzyska metro station. The building has on offer a total of 16 500 sq. m., of which the ground and underground floor will be for trade and services. Centrum Marszałkowska was designed in accordance with the philosophy of a city building located in the very centre of Warsaw, access to which is guaranteed mainly through an extensive public transport network. Therefore, the building offers a sufficient number of 106 parking spaces in the underground car park as well as parking for 36 bikes, as complemented by the infrastructure for cyclists – changing rooms and showers. The official opening of the office part of the building will take place in the early autumn.