CHICAGO: Chicago retailing giant Marshall Field's is working with its longtime firm Hill & Knowlton to publicize major renovations in its State Street store.
Field's has brought in a host of retailing partners for the 10-story store, hoping that boutiques run by the likes of Yahoo! and designer Thomas Pink will attract more shoppers.
PR efforts centered on what Field's was calling its Ultimate Renaissance Weekend (September 18-20), which included a vertical fashion show and in-store party Thursday, and a casting call for ABC's The Bachelor and The Bachelorette on Friday.
Initial media relations efforts began two months ago, with H&K organizing a reporter hard-hat tour of the store so journalists could see the construction underway at the site.
Additional weekend themes in September and October will include a culinary weekend, a community weekend, and a beauty and fashion weekend, each featuring celebrities from those areas.
Like other department stores, Field's - owned by Target - has been facing increased competition in recent years from discounters and specialty retailers.
In Chicago, it also faces the possibility that major new retail competition could spring up on the block across from its store, where the city has been trying to encourage commercial development for several years.
At one point, the city tried to get UK retailer Harrods to build a new store on the vacant block.