A Longtime Staple Is Returning to Westfield Old Orchard Ahead of the Holidays

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A familiar storefront is heading back to Westfield Old Orchard in Skokie: Barnes & Noble.

The bookstore originally resided on the suburban shopping center's grounds for 27 years before shuttering its doors in 2021 so the the site could be redeveloped. Word of its closure struck a chord with many shoppers, according to the company.

“The closing of the old Barnes & Noble last year almost broke our email inbox as customers wrote to express their dismay,” Barnes & Noble CEO James Daunt said in a statement. “It is especially pleasing, therefore, to reopen in Old Orchard. We do so with a truly stunning store. I think the book lovers of Chicago will be surprised and delighted at quite how beautiful it is possible to make a new bookstore.”

The revamped, two-story bookstore will span over 20,000-square feet at a different spot, 4999 Old Orchard Ctr. The first floor will be the home to Chicago-based stationery and gift retailer Paper Source.

Barnes & Noble is set to officially reopen at 10 a.m. Wednesday with a ribbon-cutting ceremony. The event will be joined by New York Times bestselling author Sara Paretsky, who will participate in a book signing, as well.

On top of welcoming the bookstore back, the shopping center expanded its roster with several other openings.

Luxury brand Louis Vuitton set up shop Nov. 10, and Bloomie's, a smaller retail version of the Bloomingdale's department store that once anchored the mall, will debut Nov. 17. Other newcomers, including Capital Grille, Levi's, Molly's Cupcakes, Bar Siena and Psycho Bunny, are also slated for openings.

Throughout the season, the mall will host a "Santa Trolley Experience" and other holiday events.

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