No More Sandals in Downtown Disney

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From The OC Register:

A casual shoe store quickly became one of the top sellers in Downtown Disney after it opened in November. But Sanuk is set to shut down as early as March 14 when its temporary agreement ends.

Sanuk and Disney are in talks to find a new location within Downtown Disney, but nothing has been found yet, said James Crush, marketing manager for Sanuk Footwear.

“We are working with Sanuk to develop future opportunities in Downtown Disney,” said Betsy Sanchez, a Disneyland Resort spokeswoman, in a prepared statement.

The Irvine-based footwear company opened up its first-ever stand-alone store in November as a temporary location for the holiday season in partnership with the Haagen-Dazs owner. Sanuk originally was supposed to close in January so that the store next door, Ridemakerz, could begin its expansion.

Because of delays in the renovations, Sanuk was able to stay longer. Ridemakerz also is set to close March 14 so it can start construction, Sanchez said.

“The store has been very, very successful. We’ve had huge days in the last few months. Disney is happy and we’re happy,” Crush said.

The problem is, there are no open storefronts in the tightly packed shopping district.

Sanuk usually sells its handmade shoes in surf shops and upscale stores, including Barneys New York and Fred Segal. The 10-year-old company specializes in comfortable shoes, including flip-flops made of yoga mats and closed sandal shoes that give the feeling of bare feet, Crush said.

The Downtown Disney store has become popular with tourists with tired feet who want to keep walking around the parks, Crush said.

“We’re waiting for an opening in one of the other retailers to open up for us so can get a permanent location,” Crush said. “The success of the store has really helped our cause.”

Sanuk is the Thai word for fun.

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