DSW opens 12,000-square-foot store at Bellis Fair

The transformation of the old movie theater at Bellis Fair into retail stores is now complete.

With the opening of DSW on Thursday, April 30, all three spaces are now occupied at what was the Regal Bellis Fair Cinemas 6 movie theater, which closed in January 2014.

With DSW joining Chipotle and Buffalo Wild Wings, the area has a completely different look, said Susie Greig, a Bellingham resident who was among the first in line at the Designer Shoe Warehouse ribbon-cutting ceremony.

Greig, who was at the opening with her daughter, Heather, was particularly happy with DSW opening. They’ve been to five DSW stores and appreciate the fact they no longer have to drive out of town to shop at the retailer.

“A lot of our friends didn’t know what it (DSW) is, so we’ve been telling them all about this one,” said Susie Greig.

The Bellingham store has about 15,000 pairs of shoes, along with belts, purses, bags, wallets, hats and other clothing accessories in the 12,000-square-foot space.

“The first impression (from customers) we’re getting is that it’s much bigger than they thought it would be,” said Brandon Norby, the Bellingham DSW store manager.

Around 50 people walked into the store within the first few minutes of the 9:30 a.m. opening, something DSW District Manager Beth Micenko was pleased to see. She said they’ve heard from both local residents and Canadians, with the most common comment being that they are happy to not have to travel as far for a U.S. store.