Centennial Unveils Significant Expansion to Hawthorn 2.0 Redevelopment Plan

20 October 2022

Real Estate Owner Increases Investment in Multi-Million-Dollar Project, Adds Additional Luxury Apartments and Retail Space to Growing Hawthorn Mall Campus

DALLAS – October 19, 2022 – Centennial, a real estate investment firm with a national portfolio of shopping, dining, entertainment, and mixed-use destinations as well as a full-service advisory services platform (https://CentennialREC.com), today announced a significant expansion of its Hawthorn 2.0 transformative redevelopment plan for Hawthorn Mall, a super-regional shopping center in the suburb of Vernon Hills, just north of Chicago (www.ShopHawthornMall.com). The expanded plan calls for the relocation of 250 luxury apartments to create a larger outdoor public plaza to enhance the customer experience and increase pedestrian access to the mall; a new grand entrance for the shopping center; and significantly more retail, restaurant and entertainment space surrounding the exterior of the growing open-air “Hawthorn Row” integrated streetscape to further optimize the mall’s platform. The newly designed plaza creates a dynamic outdoor live, work, play environment with activities for all members of the community.

“The expansion of our Hawthorn 2.0 plans enhances the original vision we had for the center as a master-planned, mixed-use destination,” says Sam Whitebread Vice President of Development, Centennial. “Now nearly three times the size of the original project, Hawthorn 2.0 will offer a best-in-class community with a robust mix of modern rental properties and the comfort and convenience of shopping, dining and entertainment all in a single easily accessible complex planned to perfection.”

With the final approval of the Vernon Hills Board of Trustees, Centennial sees the revised plan as a “doubling down” on the firm’s commitment to the project and a significant expansion of the center’s proposed apartment and retail campus. The expanded vision for Hawthorn Mall will include “The Domaine,” the center’s 311-unit luxury apartment development housed in two four-story buildings on the east side of the mall, as well as an additional building with 250 luxury apartments, for a total of 561 luxury apartments in all.

Changes to the plan for “Hawthorn Row,” a lively Main Street-style retail, dining and public gathering space situated between the luxury apartment buildings, will add 27,000 square feet of retail and dining space as well as three new building pad sites slated for future restaurant additions. To accommodate the changes and to create a more modern look and feel, the center has demolished the vacant Carson’s store and will relocate Dave & Buster’s to a nearby spot on the property that is slightly further north from its present location.

Plans also call for removing approximately one-third of the mall’s interior space along the Sears end of the center, including the food court; when completed, the interior portion of the mall will begin at the newly built Center Park and continue through the Macy’s and JCPenney wings, while the revitalized exterior will include more greenspace and brand-new exterior-accessible shopping, dining and entertainment. The center’s AMC Theatre, located just north of where the changes will occur, will remain unaffected.

Focus and Atlantic Residential, the center’s development partners whose local expertise helped shape the master plan, began vertical construction of the first 311 units of The Domaine luxury apartments and the now expanding Hawthorn Row in July 2021. While this portion of the project is expected to be completed by mid-2023, pre-leasing for The Domaine has begun and the apartments will open in phases beginning in early 2023. Work on Phase 2 of the center’s redevelopment, which includes the expanded Hawthorn Row retail and additional 250 apartments, is expected to begin in 2023 and to be completed by January 2025.

Centennial first announced its transformative plans for Hawthorn Mall in 2019, which included new retail and dining options, luxury multi-family housing, and indoor/outdoor gathering spaces. The center kicked off its redevelopment with the 2020 unveiling of “Center Park,” a sophisticated 15,190-square-foot park-like experience in the mall’s former Center Court featuring a lush landscape accessorized by engaging lawn games and attractive, comfortable soft seating, the first step in the center’s transformation into a new and more inviting retail, dining and entertainment destination.

“The new, enhanced vision for Hawthorn 2.0 is everything people want in a modern, connected day-to-night community,” says Jeff Rutzen, General Manager of the shopping center. “With the changes we’re making to this center, we’re taking the opportunity to reinvent the retail real estate of today, creating an entirely new kind of mixed-use destination that other developers will use as a model for the future.”

Throughout the transformation, Hawthorn Mall will remain open, and shoppers will have full access to the retail, restaurants and entertainment located throughout the property. The shopping center will showcase its comprehensive redevelopment plans and progress in Hawthorn Mall’s Transformation Suite, located on the upper level of the mall near Center Park. The Transformation Suite is open to the public and will serve as an information hub for consumers as well as current and prospective tenants throughout the center’s redevelopment.

About Hawthorn Mall

Located in Vernon Hills, Illinois, Hawthorn Mall has been the preferred shopping and dining destination in Lake County since 1973. While the center currently boasts more than 120 specialty retailers, including Lake County’s only Maggiano’s and a state-of-the-art AMC Hawthorn 12 theater, Hawthorn has recently embarked on a comprehensive redevelopment that will transform the property from a traditional shopping center into a master-planned mixed-use development. This redevelopment, which represents the largest capital investment in the property since its grand opening nearly half a century ago, will redefine the customer experience and expand the center’s trade area by creating a new and distinctive sense of place that will continue to evolve with the community for generations to come. To learn more, visit the Hawthorn Mall website at www.ShopHawthornMall.com and follow the center on Facebook and Instagram.

About Centennial

Centennial is a real estate investment firm with a national portfolio of shopping, dining, entertainment and mixed-use destinations as well as a full-service third-party property and asset management division. Today, the firm operates more than 23 million square feet of managed properties in 18 states. Since 1997, Centennial has played a pivotal role in shaping the evolution of American retail by creating a superior multi-faceted shopping experience with properties that serve not only as a place of commerce, but as a place of community. For more information, visit CentennialREC.com.

About Focus

Focus is a Chicago-based developer and general contractor, that since 1993, has utilized an integrated delivery model to produce a diverse portfolio of distinctive real estate. Focus has delivered developments in the Chicago market that value over $2.4 billion and projects have ranged from smaller, multifamily communities in historic districts to high-density, mixed-use redevelopments in thriving downtowns. For more information, please visit www.workwithfocus.com.

About Atlantic Residential

Atlantic Residential is a private commercial real estate firm based in Atlanta, Georgia with regional offices in Chicago, Illinois and Ft Lauderdale, Florida. It was formed by Richard & Andrew Aaronson in 1995 to develop residential and mixed-use projects. Since its inception, the firm has been responsible for the construction of over $2.5 billion of institutional quality properties containing over 9,000 residential units. The firm is focused on developing luxury apartment communities and for-sale condominiums and townhouses. It has over 100 full-time employees engaged in property management, sales and leasing, construction, and development activities in the Southeast and the Midwest. Atlantic Residential pursues a dual strategy in housing development: (i) develop and manage a portfolio of luxury apartment communities under various proprietary brands and (ii) provide superior entry-level townhomes and condominiums, many within larger mixed-use communities. To learn more, visit https://atlanticresi.com.

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