Eddie Bauer to close in Aspen | AspenTimes.com

Eddie Bauer to close in Aspen

Janet UrquhartAspen Times Staff Writer

Aspenites will lose a local outlet for affordable blue jeans in April, with the closing of Eddie Bauer in the Mill Street Plaza.The long-rumored closing of the Aspen clothing store was confirmed Thursday by a spokeswoman at Eddie Bauer’s corporate offices in Redmond, Wash.”It’s a combination of store performance and rents,” said Jane Loeb, manager of public relations for Eddie Bauer.A 10-year lease for the Aspen store expires in April. The company evaluates the cost of doing business at a particular locale and an outlet’s sales performance each time a lease comes up and decides whether or not to renew the lease, Loeb said.Eddie Bauer is looking at other opportunities to open a store in the area, she added.The Aspen store, with more than 3,000 square feet of space on two floors, attracts a mix of local shoppers and Aspen visitors, said manager Carolyn Formica.”There’s still catalog and on-line options for shopping,” Formica said. “It’s a little more inconvenient for customers, but I think in this market, people are already familiar with on-line shopping because of the remoteness of the location.”That’s of little consolation, though, to those accustomed to popping into Eddie Bauer to buy a gift or article of clothing for themselves, said adjacent shopkeeper Annette Docimo at Aspen Sante Fe Trail.”Eddie Bauer closing – this is so sad. Where are we going to shop?” Docimo said with a sigh.However, customers of the interior furnishings shop will also be turning to the Internet soon. Aspen Sante Fe Trail, too, will close at the end of April, when it’s lease in the Mill Street Plaza expires. Owner Gayle Rasmussen is retiring after 14 years in business, Docimo said.The business will continue to operate on-line at http://www.aspensantafetrail.com, she said.The Mill Street Plaza building, at the corner of Mill Street and Hopkins Avenue, is owned by the Mill Street Plaza Association, represented by M&W Properties, according to documents on file in the Pitkin County assessor’s office.Tony Mazza of M&W Properties could not be reached for comment yesterday.Eddie Bauer, a subsidiary of Spiegel, has 10 stores in the Denver area and 553 outlets in the United States and Canada, Loeb said.