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Entertainment Retail: The New Big Box Kansas City Sales & Leasing Data

Lease Rate - $13.14
Vacancy- 5.1%


Lease Rate - $19.71
Vacancy- 6.9%


Lease Rate - $5.15
Vacancy- 5.1%


We live in a world of instant gratification. Never ending advancements in technology have allowed people instant access to more services, products, and experiences than ever before. Whether you’re searching for a movie, a conversation, or food, you can now access it or order it within seconds with the help of your smart devices. Sure, ordering rapid pick-up from Panera online, buying new shoes through Nordstrom’s mobile app, or messaging your friend via Facebook can satisfy you in just a few minutes or less. Genuinely connecting to your community and social interactions in real time, however, fulfills your social needs in a different way.

Over 250 million years of our evolutionary history, humans have become increasingly social and interactive in group settings. Social: Why our Brains are Wired to Connect, written by Social Cognitive Neuroscience Lab Director Matthew D. Lieberman, explores groundbreaking research that suggests the need to be social is more basic than our need for food and shelter. Lieberman informs, “Just as there are multiple social networks on the Internet such as Facebook and Twitter, each with its own strengths, there are also multiple social networks in our brains, sets of brain regions that work together to promote our social well-being.” Our brain’s social networks have emerged at different points within our evolutionary history to adapt to the progress of the world around us. Social media, specifically, has taken the world by storm and has increased our need for instant gratification and harmonization to the values and beliefs of the groups and communities around us. Still, interaction via apps like Instagram and Snapchat only satisfies a small portion of the multiple social networks within our brain.

Along with craving instant gratification and harmonization, humans also crave social connectedness. Successful modern-day entertainment retail concepts are tapping into this desire by creating comfortable and unique atmospheres in which audiences of all ages can come together and enjoy memorable experiences.

More well-known concepts around KC, like escape rooms, Top Golf, and pickle ball-focused restaurant, Chicken N’ Pickle, have become increasingly popular and have capitalized on this fundamental need for interaction and socialization. Because experiencebased tenants require customers to visit their spaces in person, other retailers and restaurants nearby also benefit from higher levels of foot traffic. Thus, these experiential retailers are taking the place of traditional anchor tenants in many cases.

As developers and leasing agents, we are constantly observing new and noteworthy entertainment concepts to identify potential tenants that would offer the best experiences and benefits for our communities. Beyond the concepts already mentioned, there are several other concepts we’ve been watching that have been designed to pull individuals away from the lure of their phones and encourage realtime social interaction. The first are some of our favorite recent concepts to enter KC. We’ve also thrown in a few that we hope will make the jump to our market soon!

A new concept seen taking space across the nation, Kansas City’s first urban axe throwing facility opened in the West Bottoms district in November of last year. Their unique axe throwing experience is “fun, casual, and expanding quickly to new cities!” Two new locations in Leawood and Wichita, KS are set to open this month, and Concept Website Locations Blade and Timber MO, KS, MN, OR, HI, WA Parlor MO Meow Wolf NM, CO, NV Punch Bowl Social CO, MI, TX, OR, OH, FL, UT, DC, MO, MN, IN, CA, GA several out-of-state locations opening soon after: Bloomington (home to the Mall of America), MN; St. Louis, MO; Springfield, MO; Portland, OR; Honolulu, HI; Miami, FL; and Seattle, WA.