Lehigh Valley Mall outdoor lifestyle center’s original retail tenant to close permanently | Eat, drink, shop

WHITEHALL TWP., PA – The Lehigh Valley Mall’s 15-year-old outdoor lifestyle center is losing its original tenant.

Williams-Sonoma, a global retailer of kitchenware, dinnerware and home furnishings, is set to permanently close its Whitehall Township store in the coming days.

Over the next few days, the final sale continues with 30% off food and glassware and 50% off over-the-counter tableware and electricals. Floor models of furniture, including dining sets and kitchen islands, are also discounted.

“Thank you for an amazing 15 years Lehigh Valley Mall,” reads the store’s sign.

On Tuesday, many store shelves were bare, but the remaining merchandise included dishes, glasses, muffin pans, casseroles, serving trays and bowls, cutting boards, cookbooks, bar tool kits, craft cocktail kits, mugs, kettles, hand soaps and lotions, stainless steel cookware sets, kitchen utensils such as whisks and spatulas and selected small appliances such as the waffle maker and Nespresso Creatista Plus.

Customers can also purchase a selection of food and beverages, including pancake mixes, maple syrup, cocoa powder, cupcake mix, margarita mix, fruit vinegar and barbecue sauces and spreads.

“This is the last week of business, with our last day open to the public being Sunday or Monday,” said general manager Cham Arkaah. “It’s really sad. The store’s lease was up and there wasn’t enough foot traffic. More and more people are shopping online.”

Williams-Sonoma, Inc., headquartered in San Francisco, is a multi-channel specialty retailer of high-quality home products.

In addition to its namesake cookware brand, Williams-Sonoma, Inc. the parent company of Pottery Barn and West Elm, among others.


The Pottery Barn store continues to operate at the Lehigh Valley Mall Outdoor Living Center in Whitehall Township.

The company was founded in 1956 by Chuck Williams, who turned a passion for cooking and eating with friends into a “small business with a big idea,” according to the company’s overview.

Williams opened a store in Sonoma, California to sell French tableware that had caught his eye while visiting Europe but could not be found in the United States.

The business took off and “helped spark a revolution in American cooking and entertainment that continues to this day.”

“In the decades that followed, the quality of our products, our ability to identify new market opportunities and our people-first approach to business facilitated our expansion beyond the kitchen into nearly every area of ​​the home,” the review continues. “Additionally, by embracing new technologies and customer engagement strategies as they emerge, we are able to continually refine our best-in-class approach to omnichannel retail.”

Today, Williams-Sonoma, Inc. more than 540 stores worldwide, with more than 150 in-house designers and artists in eight brands, 28 e-commerce sites and 12 supplier offices in nine countries.

Williams-Sonoma, Inc. in its 2022 investor presentation, it reported 2021 revenue totaling $8.2 billion, with revenue by channel comprising 66% e-commerce and 34% retail.

The company noted that the home furnishing industry is rapidly moving online.

“Our digital platform is well positioned to take advantage of this shift in consumer behavior to gain market share,” the company said.

In its final days, the Whitehall Williams-Sonoma store will be open Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday from noon to 5 p.m.

Arkaah and most of the Williams-Sonoma team in Whitehall will then go to the Pottery Barn store, which is located directly across the street from Williams-Sonoma, Arkaah said.

“This is just closing a single deal,” Arkaah said. “Other Williams-Sonoma stores will continue to operate, including nearby locations in King of Prussia and Bridgewater, NJ”

In response to the upcoming closing of the Lehigh Valley mall by Williams-Sonoma, Elizabeth DiDuca, the mall’s director of marketing and business development, listed several new stores, including those of And Pose Selfie Studio, Little TrenzSetters Boutique and Better Life with Bry, among others.

She has not commented on any potential tenants that may be lined up for the Williams-Sonoma space.

“I’m pleased to share that Lehigh Valley Mall continues to invest in brick-and-mortar retail offerings — with a number of local and national retailers arriving late last year just in time for the busy holiday shopping season,” DiDuca said in a written statement.


Bravo! The Italian Kitchen closed in October at Lehigh Valley Mall’s outdoor lifestyle center.

Bravo! Italian Kitchen, the lifestyle center’s other original tenant, closed in the fall. No announcement has been made to replace this space.

The full-service restaurant chain, which serves lasagna, spaghetti bolognese and other popular Italian dishes, closed in March 2020 amid the pandemic outbreak before reopening in October 2021 and closing permanently a few months ago.

The business’s former parent, FoodFirst Global Restaurants Inc., filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in April 2020 after months of problems related to labor costs, employee turnover and several underperforming restaurants, court documents show.

The negative effects of the pandemic only worsened the situation for FoodFirst, which eventually sold 45 restaurants to Orlando-based Earl Enterprises, which also owns Planet Hollywood, Buca di Beppo and other chains.

A handful of other vacancies remain at the Lehigh Valley Mall, including the former Ruby Tuesday and Almost Vegan restaurant spaces.

Openings in December included Lovisa, a global jewelry brand, and Otaku House, a store offering anime merchandise.

Lovisa fills the first-level space formerly home to edible cookie chain Dough Life, while Otaku House operates out of the second-level space formerly home to Norman’s Hallmark.

Other recent additions to the mall include Better Life With Bry, offering natural and handcrafted body, home and cleaning products, which held its grand opening in September on the first level (across from Verizon Wireless); and Chrystols Shoetique, offering women’s shoes, handbags and other accessories, which opened in October on the second level (next to Country Memories).

In addition, T-Mobile is preparing to move from its lower location near Boscov’s to a larger lower space between Better Life with Bry and L’amour in the coming months.

The new tenants join more than 140 Lehigh Valley Mall businesses, including other 2022 additions And Pose Selfie Salon (offering a creative space designed for taking photos or videos), Rivals Indoor Battlefield (offering a fun and safe environment to play with Nerf Rival guns ), Hamsa Exoticz (offers cold snacks and drinks from various countries), NYC Gyro (a restaurant offering American and international cuisine), Indian Bite (a takeaway offering authentic Indian cuisine), Cloud City (selling games, comics and toys), Warby Parker (offering glasses, sunglasses, contacts and eye exams).

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