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Laguna Hills Mall
Entrance to the mall
LocationLaguna Hills, California, United States
CoordinatesCoordinates: 33°36′39″N 117°42′26″W / 33.61081°N 117.70709°W / 33.61081; -117.70709
Address24155 Laguna Hills Mall
Opening dateApril 1973
Closing dateDecember 31, 2018
DeveloperThe Hahn Company and Rossmoor Corporation
ManagementMerlone Geier Partners
ArchitectEdward Killingsworth
No. of stores and services11
No. of anchor tenants3 (3 vacant)
Total retail floor area867,000 square feet (80,500 m2)
No. of floors1

Laguna Hills Mall was a shopping mall in Laguna Hills, California, in southern Orange County that is being redeveloped by the owners as Five Lagunas. The enclosed mall closed on December 31, 2018 and will be demolished. The exterior stores remain open. New retail, a movie theater, apartments, and a parking structure are currently planned to replace the old mall structure.[1]


1973 launch

The mall opened in phases starting in Spring 1973 with 214,000-square-foot (19,900 m2) Sears as the first anchor open, followed by a 50,000-square-foot (4,600 m2) two-level Buffums on September 5, 1973. The Broadway followed, opening in August 1975, and J.C. Penney in 1976. Up to that point, the mall had cost an estimated $50,000,000 to build[2] and contained 393,000 square feet (36,500 m2) of retail space in Phase I with 55 shops and 832,000 square feet (77,300 m2) and 83 shops in Phase II.[3][4]


In May 1991, Buffum's closed due to the chain being liquidated and three years later, the store's second level was converted into an upstairs food court. The food court, which operated from 1994 to 2011,[5] was the only part of the general mall on the second level. The Broadway converted into Macy's in May 1996.[6]


In May 2013, Merlone Geier Partners purchased the property from Simon Property Group.[7] A year later, Merlone Geier purchased the Sears anchor store. Sears (the mall's original anchor store) closed in July 2014.[8] Renovations started in 2016.[9][10][11]


Former Laguna Cafes food court entrance at Laguna Hills Mall.
Former Laguna Cafes food court entrance at Laguna Hills Mall.

The Laguna Hills Mall is scheduled to be renamed "Five Lagunas". According to Laguna Hills' city documents, the renovations include pedestrian plazas, new retail sections, a 988-unit apartment complex, a multi-screen movie theater, new signage, and a 1,500-space parking structure.[10][11]

On January 3, 2018, it was announced that Macy's would be closing in March 2018 as part of a plan to close 11 stores nationwide, which halted construction on its end of the mall and left JCPenney as the only remaining anchor.[12]

On July 10, 2018, it was announced that JCPenney would be closing in October 2018, making it the last anchor store to close which left the mall with no anchors.[13]

On December 18, 2018, it was announced that the interior of the mall would close on December 31, 2018. The exterior stores will remain open.[1]

Plans for Five Lagunas

At a November 2019 City Council meeting, Merlone-Geier unveiled two major changes to the previous plans proposed since 2016: adding housing and reduction of retail space. Previously, the proposal called for 880,000 square feet of retail space and 988 residential units. Another reduction was made in office space to make room for the seasonal events. The revised proposal includes a new 110,000 square-foot cinema, 225,000 to 300,000 square feet of retail, a 125-room hotel, 390,000 to 520,000 square feet of office space, two three-story parking structures, and a potential of 1,200 to 1,500 more apartments.[14]


  1. ^ a b "Laguna Hills Mall closed Dec. 31". Orange County Register. 2018-12-18. Retrieved 2018-12-18.
  2. ^ "10th Buffum's to be introduced". Los Angeles Times. September 2, 1973.
  3. ^ "Hahn's Centers Number 13". The Courier-News Bridgewater, New Jersey. May 13, 1975.
  4. ^ Orange Coast Magazine. Emmis Communications. December 1980. p. 28. ISSN 0279-0483. Retrieved 2015-04-12.
  5. ^ "South County mall to close entire food court". The Orange County Register. Retrieved 2015-04-12.
  6. ^ Peltz, James F.; Masunaga, Samantha (November 9, 2017). "Macy's is shutting its Westside Pavilion store and others in California". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 13 November 2017.
  7. ^ "Laguna Hills Mall sold; makeover planned". Orange County Register. Retrieved 2015-04-12.
  8. ^ "Laguna Hills Mall Owner to Redo Redevelopment Plans". Orange County Business Journal. Retrieved 2015-04-12.
  9. ^ "Laguna Hills Mall". Retrieved 24 June 2015.
  10. ^ a b "Laguna Hills Planning Projects and New Developments". Retrieved 2016-08-01.
  11. ^ a b "Tired Laguna Hills Mall to add luxury apartments, park, new shops by 2018". Orange County Register. Retrieved 2016-08-01.
  12. ^ "Renovation stopped at Five Lagunas in Laguna Hills as Macy's set to close". Orange County Register. 22 September 2017. Retrieved 18 December 2018.
  13. ^ "J.C. Penney to close at Laguna Hills mall, developer says". Orange County Register. 10 July 2018. Retrieved 18 December 2018.
  14. ^ Chapman, Shayna (December 21, 2019). "New Plan Proposed for Laguna Hills Mall". Voice of OC.