Loblaws® at Maple Leaf Gardens* opens today

Loblaw re-imagines the urban supermarket to delight fans with fresh food experiences

BRAMPTON, ON, Nov. 30, 2011 /CNW/ - (TSX:L) - Loblaws at Maple Leaf Gardens opened today bringing Food's Greatest Stage™, an innovative and vibrant urban food shopping experience, to a landmark building with a façade restored to its original glory and a revitalized interior respecting the spirit of its hallowed halls.

"We are honoured to have had the opportunity to breathe new life into this iconic Canadian landmark. This building and its community, inspired us to create an innovative and extraordinary urban food store concept that captures the spirit of its original four walls and lives as part of the social fabric of the community it serves," said Galen G. Weston, executive chairman, Loblaw Companies Limited. "We know that once people step inside and take in all the store has to offer they will agree that Loblaws at Maple Leaf Gardens is indeed the crown jewel of food stores."

In 1998, Loblaw opened Queen's Quay Market in Toronto, Ontario. It featured cathedral ceilings, a fresh food hall, meals to go and musical performances and in its day was recognized by many as one of the first of a new generation of urban grocery stores. The 85,000 square foot Loblaws at Maple Leaf Gardens located at 60 Carlton Street in Toronto holds the promise for a similar paradigm shift of the urban grocery store model.  This blueprint is also used at a new Loblaws located in the Queen and Portland neighbourhood in Toronto, Ontario, which will open on December 2, 2011.

First Steps Inside Loblaws at Maple Leaf Gardens
A three dimensional sculpture created from reclaimed stadium chairs, ice-rink light fixtures from the building, restored windows, exposed original concrete walls, wall murals and other artistic images capturing incredible moments are just a few connections to the past found in the store.

These historic elements are integrated into new stainless steel and blond wood grain surfaces, glossy black tile and a vibrant red and orange floor inspired by the colours from the original Loblaws logo.  Together they create a framework for the store layout that unfolds to accommodate the preferred food experience and needs of today's urban shoppers. The overall look and feel is simple and timeless and is meant to ensure food is centre stage.

Theatre of Food
A theatre of food, the store features an east meets west sushi bar featuring both traditional flair and modern chef-inspired creations by T&T Supermarket made as customers watch. A pizza oven serves made to order pizza in a handful of minutes or customers can select from a wealth of fresh wholesome meals prepared daily in the store by 14 in-house chefs in an open elevated kitchen.

The first Loblaws store to feature a complete ACE Bakery®, customers will get artisan breads made from scratch every day with certain varieties exclusive to Loblaws at Maple Leaf Gardens. An amazing 18 foot wall of cheese is a sight to see; the store carries more than 400 varieties of cheese and has cheese specialists ready to share samples. The Patisserie features a stunning collection of treats, including handcrafted milk chocolate, and impressive array of cakes, cupcakes and more.  A Tea Emporium® lives in store, and features experts who have scoured the globe for more than 10 years to curate a supreme selection of the finest teas.

Venture further into the store to find an outstanding selection of fresh produce with an emphasis on organic, a fishmonger and a butcher as well as a self-serve meat counter featuring cured, aging and omega-3 meats and more.

A full service dry good, grocery and general merchandise area including small appliances, cookware, linens and home accessories from the President's Choice® and Everyday Essentials™ product lines offers a well-rounded shopping experience.

livelifewell™
A balanced diet full of fresh and delicious food is the cornerstone of a healthier lifestyle, but it's not the whole picture.

The store has a team devoted to wellbeing, ready to answer questions about health and diet.  With an in-store dietitian, customers can get assistance in decoding and discerning food labels as well as plan delicious and healthier meals.  A 50 foot wall of vitamins and supplements is stacked high with health products to fill gaps in diets.  The pharmacy accepts all major drug plans, and offers blood pressure monitoring, diabetes risk assessment, a cardiovascular risk assessment and a food allergy management program - for free.

The store also features a medical clinic and will offer a wide array of walk-in services including sports medicine, casting and suturing 7 days a week.  In addition, the clinic will eventually house family doctors and specialists.  Within the clinic, Physical Therapy One will be on site providing various high demand health services including physiotherapy, chiropractic treatments and massage therapy.

Second Floor - There is More!
An 8,500 square foot Joe Fresh® location is located on the second floor. It will feature women's and men's apparel, active wear, accessories, cosmetics, jewelry and sleepwear. The second floor is home to an LCBO and the President's Choice® Cooking School, which offers exceptional programs, from demonstrations to cooking classes, including an exclusive to this store, Dine with the Chef program.

Making a Positive Difference in the Community
Loblaws at Maple Leaf Gardens continues the strong Loblaw tradition of supporting the communities it serves. During the Extra Helping™ Holiday Food Drive, Loblaws at Maple Leaf Gardens provides food and funds to the Daily Bread Food Bank.

Loblaw supports the local Toronto Kiwanis Boys & Girls Club with having made a donation for its fitness room in support of healthy, active kids, and a donation to The 519 Church Street Community Centre to support their community meal programs.

Visit Loblaws.ca/60Carlton for more store details.

About Loblaw Companies Limited
Loblaw Companies Limited, a subsidiary of George Weston Limited, is Canada's largest food retailer and a leading provider of drugstore, general merchandise and financial products and services. Loblaw is one of the largest private sector employers in Canada. With more than 1,000 corporate and franchised stores from coast to coast, Loblaw and its franchisees employ more than 136,000 full-time and part-time employees. Through its portfolio of store formats, Loblaw is committed to providing Canadians with a wide, growing and successful range of products and services to meet the everyday household demands of Canadian consumers. Loblaw is known for the quality, innovation and value of its food offering. It offers Canada's strongest control (private) label program, including the unique President's Choice®, no name® and Joe Fresh® brands. In addition, the Company makes available to consumers President's Choice Financial® services and offers the PC® points loyalty program.

*Reg'd TM. Lic'd use.

Image with caption: "Today customers enjoyed the opening of Loblaws at Maple Leaf Gardens, Toronto's new crown jewel of grocery stores bringing a vibrant food shopping experience to this Canadian landmark." (CNW Group/Loblaw Companies Limited)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20111130_C2566_PHOTO_EN_7695.jpg

SOURCE Loblaw Companies Limited

For further information:

additional media materials and/or to schedule an interview, please email  pr@loblaw.ca.


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