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VANOC opens anchor Olympic Superstore in downtown Vancouver at the Bay

VANCOUVER, Oct. 1 /CNW/ - Everything Vancouver 2010 under one roof: that is the vision behind the Olympic Superstore opening today on the main floor of the Bay in downtown Vancouver. The 1,890-square metre (21,000 square foot) location houses more than 1,000 pieces of official licensed merchandise for the Games, including plush mascot toys, T-shirts and toques and thousands of pins waiting to be bought and traded.

The location at the Bay, Canada's largest retailer, marks the first time in Olympic history that an Olympic Superstore is housed within an existing bricks and mortar establishment. The Olympic Superstore is an independent retail operation licensed by the Vancouver Organizing Committee for the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games (VANOC).

"The store is quite simply amazing and we owe a great deal of thanks to all our partners, especially the Hudson's Bay Company for providing us with this fantastic downtown location," said John Furlong, VANOC's Chief Executive Officer. "This opening is a major milestone for the 2010 Winter Games and is an opportunity for all Canadians and visitors to join in the excitement of the coming Games and take a little piece of Vancouver 2010 home with them."

Jeff Sherman, CEO of the Hudson's Bay Company, added: "Hudson's Bay Company will bring a world-class department store experience for Canadians and international visitors to the Games. Our company is proud to partner with VANOC on offering consumers the largest assortment of Vancouver 2010 products and Vancouver 2010 Canadian Olympic Team Apparel."

"We've seen interest in the 2010 Games merchandise growing steadily and are pleased to now offer more choice than ever before at this Superstore," said Caley Denton, VANOC's vice president of ticketing and consumer marketing. An estimated 10,000 people are expected to visit the store daily during the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games.

The opening of the Olympic Superstore coincided with the official unveiling of the 2010 Canadian Olympic Team uniform by the Canadian Olympic Committee and the Hudson's Bay Company. The 28-piece collection marries vintage Canadian designs with the latest high-tech fabrications in a palette of red, vintage white, black, and heather grey and will be sold to the public at the downtown Olympic Superstore location.

The uniform "makes a great statement about Canada and our athletes. It speaks to our official colours and heritage but with a modern, youthful spirit. These items are a perfect way for Canadians to feel a part of Team Canada and show their support of the athletes on home ice and snow in 2010," Furlong said.

Visa, a proud partner of the Games and the Olympic Superstore, along with the Hudson's Bay Company, have dressed the downtown building's upper exterior panels facing Seymour and West Georgia streets with almost 40 banners celebrating the Games and Canadian Olympic and Paralympic athletes. The banners, unveiled today, are 16 metres high and approximately five metres wide and feature Canadian medal-winning athletes such as speed skater Clara Hughes, bobsledder Pierre Lueders, as well as American Lindsay Jacobellis, a 2006 Olympic silver medallist in snowboarding.

Inside the Superstore, customers will find the Happiness café and official pin trading centre from Coca-Cola, the city's largest pin wall and the latest Games-related products from sponsors such as Swatch, Panasonic, Birks, Nike, and the Royal Canadian Mint. In light of VANOC's goals to neutralize the carbon footprint for the 2010 Winter Games, the Hudson's Bay Company is working with Offsetters - the first Official Supplier of Carbon Offsets in Games history - by voluntarily offsetting the operations of the Olympic Superstore.

Among the Olympic Superstore's most interesting features at Games time will be a concierge service for shoppers wanting to ship purchases overseas or within Canada using Purolator, the exclusive supplier of courier services for the 2010 Winter Games. The company will take purchases to hotels in downtown Vancouver for those in a rush to get to a sport or Cultural Olympiad event, as well as those who want the convenience of not carrying their parcels home.

The Olympic Superstore at 674 Granville St. will operate during regular operating hours at the Bay leading up to the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games, with extended hours starting February 12, 2010 when the Games begin. The Superstore will close at the end of the Paralympic Winter Games in late March 2010.

In recognition of Visa's long-standing support of the Olympic Games, the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Superstore proudly accepts only Visa cards and cash.

About VANOC

VANOC is responsible for the planning, organizing, financing and staging of the XXI Olympic Winter Games and the X Paralympic Winter Games in 2010. The 2010 Olympic Winter Games will be staged in Vancouver and Whistler from February 12 to 28, 2010. Vancouver and Whistler will host the Paralympic Winter Games from March 12 to 21, 2010. Visit www.vancouver2010.com.

About the Hudson's Bay Company

Hudson's Bay Company is a Premier National Partner and the General Retail Merchant of the Vancouver 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games. In partnership with Vancouver Organizing Committee for the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games (VANOC), the company is designing and manufacturing the official uniforms for the Games-time workforce; it will also be outfitting the athletes' villages, in both Vancouver and Whistler, with quality products to make the athletes comfortable in 2010.

SOURCE Hudson's Bay

For further information: For further information: Erin Mikaluk, VANOC Communications, (604) 403-2471, erin_mikaluk@vancouver2010.com; Shari Burnett, Hudson's Bay Company, (604) 623-3007, Shari.burnett@karyo-edelman.com


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