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Celebrate

Fashion Island

with a look

back in time

Browse by decade: 1950s 1960s 1970s 1980s 1990s 2000s 2010s
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1953

50,000 Attend National Boy Scout Jamboree

The Irvine Ranch hosts the third annual National Boy Scout Jamboree welcoming some 50,000 Scouts from all over the world. It was the first international gathering of Scouts in the West and took place in part on what is now known as Fashion Island. The event gave Jamboree Road its name.

1960s

The

Ground-

breaking

Decade

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1966

Officially under construction

Groundbreaking for Newport Town Center (later named Fashion Island), a regional shopping center at the junction of MacArthur Boulevard.

1966

Groundbreaking Event

Watch this quick video with historical clips of the 1966 groundbreaking event for Newport Center. If you’re wondering where the time capsule is buried, we are too! It’s a mystery as to where it is and what’s inside it.

1967

Grand

Opening

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1967

Fashion Island Opens With a Bash

Fashion Island celebrates its grand opening on September 9, 1967 with an opening night charity benefit drawing 18,000 people.

1967

The Original Four

At 909,000 square feet, Fashion Island opens with four department stores: Buffums, The Broadway, Robinson’s, and Penneys (known today as J.C. Penney); 52 specialty stores; two restaurants: Bob Burns and the Velvet Turtle; and parking for 5,500 cars.

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1968

Construction Continues

Construction continues at Newport Center with Irvine Company headquarters. Employees in these office towers will enjoy expansive views of the Back Bay and Balboa Peninsula.

1969

Irvine Company Headquarters Completed

Irvine Company headquarters in Newport Beach are completed at 500 and 550 Newport Center Drive, steps away from Fashion Island.

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1969

Fashion Island Koi Pond Installed

The Koi Pond at Fashion Island was a popular landmark from the start. The pond holds 20,000 gallons of water and 80 koi.

1970s

Newport

Center

Comes to

Life

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1970

Bouffants and Sports Cars

While Newport Center continues to develop, locals and tourists enjoy coastal shopping at its finest at Fashion Island bringing with them the styles and trends of the '70s.

The “World’s Largest Wind Chimes” sculpture installed on the south side of then Robinson’s (now Macy’s) are the work of mural artist Tom Van Sant. While the chimes can no longer be heard, the sculpture still remains today.

1973

Butterfly Court

Guests enjoy the Southern California sunshine in Butterfly Court in front of The Broadway. Now called the Neiman Marcus – Bloomingdale’s Courtyard, this gathering space is home to StyleWeekOC fashion shows, the Fashion Island Tree Lighting Ceremony, live weekend entertainment, Bloomingdale's 59th & Lex Cafe, and much more.

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1978

Bullock's and Neiman Marcus Open

Neiman Marcus at Fashion Island remains the only Orange County location to this day.

Did you know? Since 1939, Neiman Marcus has issued an annual Christmas Catalog filled with unusual and extravagant gifts, much of which is not sold in its stores. How fun!

1978

GARYS Opens 3,500-Square-Foot Shop

Still a staple retailer at Fashion Island with a loyal following, GARYS, which opened in 1978, now features over 12,000 square feet of men’s fashion.

1980s

CONTINUED

GROWTH

1985

Atrium Court Opens

Penneys closes and Atrium Court opens in its place with numerous smaller shops and a food court on the lower level.

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1985

Skydivers Court

Atrium Court opens into Skydivers Court (also known as Stage Court). While referred to as skydivers, the three bronze figures are actually jesters as sculptor Aristides Demetrios drew inspiration from the graceful postures of circus aerials.

The figures, which were installed in 1967, are 12-feet-long each on top of 27-foot-high columns, making balance the utmost importance in positioning the sculpture.

1989

Fashion Island Expands

After extensive remodeling and landscaping, Fashion Island reopened in 1989 with a festive celebration. Included in this expansion was 70,000 square feet of retail, three outdoor paseos, the Island Terrace food court, a seven-screen theater, and a four-level parking structure.

1990

Grand

Openings

& Arrivals

1992

Thousands Welcome Hard Rock Café

Hard Rock Café opens with an outdoor concert featuring The Neville Brothers and draws more than 15,000 attendees.

1993

Robinson's Consolidates & Renames

Robinson’s becomes Robinsons-May after the consolidation of J. W. Robinson’s and May Company California.

1995

Wolfgang Puck Café Arrives

Shoppers dine al fresco at Wolfgang Puck Café.

1996

Macy's Opens

Bullock’s for Women quickly reopens as Macy’s women’s store as a result of the continued consolidation of the department store industry.

1998

It's Showtime

A family enjoying an afternoon at Edwards Theater (now Island Cinema).

2000s

A More

Modern

Era

2005

Island Hotel Newport Beach Arrives

Four Seasons Hotel Newport Beach rebrands as Island Hotel Newport Beach under Irvine Company management.

2006

Robinsons-May Becomes Macy's

Robinsons-May becomes a full-line Macy’s store following the merger of Federated Department Stores and The May Department Stores Company.

The former Macy’s women’s store closes and is ultimately demolished and rebuilt as Nordstrom in 2010.

2008

Snapshot In Time

As technology changes, so does retail! Here’s a look back at a former Ritz Camera storefront.

2010s

Major

Reinvestment

2010

New Logo & Signage

Fashion Island introduces a new logo, which is also reflected on the new monument signage at the Center’s entries.

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2010

Fashion Island Undergoes $100 Million Renovation

Fashion Island completes its $100 million reinvestment that transformed the Center’s buildings and outdoor spaces with dramatic new architecture and common area amenities, new landscape and water fountains, and expanded parking and retail spaces.

As part of the reinvestment, 20 new stores and restaurants were added including Nordstrom, Dick’s Sporting Goods and True Food Kitchen.

2010

Forever 21 Expands

Forever 21 opens a two-story location in place of the former Circuit City.

2011

Fashion Forward

Then Project Runway co-host and Liz Claiborne Inc. Chief Creative Officer Tim Gunn hosts a fashion presentation.

2011

Trolley Service

Fashion Island adds complimentary San Francisco-style trolley service to take shoppers throughout the parking areas.

2011

Mouse In The House

Mickey Mouse & Friends from the Disneyland Resort host Fashion Island’s Annual Tree Lighting Ceremony through 2015.

2011

Luxury Theater Raises Curtain

Island Cinema opens December 16, 2011, bringing one of the first luxury theaters to Orange County complete with reserved seating, in-theater dining, and beer & wine service.

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2012

Fashion Island Turns 45

Fashion Island celebrates its 45-year anniversary by adding 22,000 square feet of retail space. As a result of the recent reinvestment, more than 40 stores and restaurants opened at the shopping center since early 2010, including Great Maple, Joie, ‘lette macarons, and Tesla.

2012

STYLEWEEKOC Debuts

STYLEWEEKOC, which had previously been hosted at sister-property Irvine Spectrum Center since 2008, debuts at Fashion Island with fashion shows hosted outside in the Neiman Marcus – Bloomingdale’s Courtyard.

2012

Whole Foods Opens

“America’s Healthiest Grocery Store” arrives at Fashion Island.

2013

FIG & OLIVE Opens

FIG & OLIVE, the elegant Mediterranean restaurant from New York and Los Angeles, opens.

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2013

Red O Opens

Red O, the upscale, Mexican-inspired concept from renowned chef Rick Bayless, opens.

2014

Traditional Jewelers Debuts New Look

After 35 years as OC’s preeminent purveyor of fine jewelry, Traditional Jewelers debuts its new look and location at Fashion Island that also includes exclusive shop-in-shops from Rolex, Cartier, and more.

2014

Urban Decay OpensUrban Decay Opens

Urban Decay opens first stand-alone store/flagship location at Fashion Island.

2014

Louis Vuitton Boutique Opens

Louis Vuitton boutique opens at Neiman Marcus.

2015

The Bonobos Guideshop Opens First O.C. Location

Bonobos, the largest online-launched men’s clothing brand in the US, opens its first Orange County brick-and-mortar e-commerce store – the Bonobos Guideshop – bringing together the best of two shopping worlds for a unique hybrid shopping experience.

2015

Sushi Roku Opens First O.C. Location

Sushi Roku opens first Orange County location.

2016

“Ultimate Anthropologie Experience” Arrives

Anthropologie unveils its major expansion and transformation into California’s first “Ultimate Anthropologie Experience” store featuring 12 full-scale bedroom, living, and dining rooms filled with home furnishings, a design center, more than 800 beauty products, and nearly 40 brands of shoes. The expansions doubles the store’s footprint to nearly 20,000 square feet.

2017

50th Anniversary

2017

Celebrating 20+ Years

Local merchants celebrating 20+ years at Fashion Island include GARYS, Traditional Jewelers, Pain du Monde, Stevie Sister (formerly Modern Romance), Newport Tobacco, and Häagen-Dazs.

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2017

50th Anniversary

On September 9, 2017, Fashion Island celebrated 50 years of being a premier coastal shopping and dining destination. Thank you for 50 fabulous years!

2018

St. John Opens

The American luxury women’s apparel brand joined Fashion Island in February with a breezy new concept store.

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2018

Cinemas / Restaurant / Bar / Café

THE LOT, a luxury lifestyle entertainment destination that offers a dining, drinking and cinematic experience unlike any other opened to the public April 20 with its first showing of Avengers: Infinity War.

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