If you are Canadian, there's no way you haven't heard about The Hudson's Bay Company (HBC) or the Bay as it's affectionately called. But they aren't only about those red Olympic mittens - you know the ones we are talking about.
The Hudson's Bay Company (HBC) - A Short History
There's a lot more to the Bay than meets the Canadian eye. Did you know that the Bay was chartered on the 2nd of May, 1670, which makes it the oldest incorporated merchandising company in the English-speaking world?! In addition, it began as a fur-trading company, because Europe had a big demand for felt hats made of beaver fur.
On March 8, 2013, the Hudson's Bay Company, known as The Bay, announced that it will now be called the Hudson's Bay. Even though HBC now has more than 250 department stores in Canada and the United States, it started building retail stores only in 1913.
Sadly, HBC isn't Canadian-owned anymore, having been bought out by American financier Jerry Zucker for C$1 billion in 2006. But that doesn't mean Canadians love HBC any less. Let's read on to learn more facts about this ubiquitous and Canadian icon that will always be in every Canadian's heart.
The Bay Online Shopping - Marketplace
The Bay is the largest fashion department store in Canada with 89 department stores across all major cities, like Toronto, Vancouver, Montreal, and more. The luxury retailer Saks Fifth Avenue is also owned by the Bay.
In April 2021, HBC announced that it would be opening up its online eCommerce store, which is called the Marketplace and sits on thebay.com, which is the 6th largest eCommerce business in Canada. It sells more than 25,000 products through the Marketplace and has introduced more than 1500 new brands since its launch in April 2021, with more surely to come.
The Bay Online Orders
The hybrid shopping experience that the Bay offers is unparalleled. You can order and shop online for items, and pick them up in-store, or vice versa. Also, shipping is free on orders over $99.
If you are the kind of person who loves shopping online, then you are going to appreciate the Bay's online shopping app. You can also earn points and rewards if you shop using the Hudson's Bay Mastercard, making it even more lucrative to shop with the Bay.
The Bay Furniture
If you are looking to purchase furniture that's not IKEA and that has a little bit more sophistication to it, then you need to check out The Bay's furniture store. Not only can you purchase furniture items online and get them shipped to your home, but you can also go to their iconic stores and see their furniture laid out enticingly.
It will make you wish that you could move into the Bay and live there. You can imagine yourself living with and using the Bay's furniture items for a long time to come.
They have sofas, accent chairs, ottomans and benches, coffee and side tables, sofa beds, and TV stands to browse through. They also sell mattresses, patio furniture, and home furnishings.
If you're not comfortable purchasing items online, but can't get to a store, you can also call their superior customer service to order through the phone. They also have a price match guarantee, so if you find a similar price online or with a competitor on an identical item, they will match the price.
The Bay Dresses
If you are a woman living in Canada, you must know about the flurry of activity that's involved with finding the perfect dress for all your festive occasions, particularly during Christmastime. And you have probably frequented the Bay during these times because it's so easy to find gorgeous dresses at the Bay which are unique and sparkly on whatever budget you have.
Not only do they have cocktail and party dresses from every brand you could imagine, but they also have ballroom gowns for those extra-formal events. In addition, they carry work and casual dresses, bridesmaid dresses, and prom dresses.
Is there anything you can't find at the Bay? That's why if you are stuck and needing a dressy solution, then your first stop has to be the dresses section at the Bay, either online or at one of their stores.
Some brands that they carry are:
- Tommy Hilfiger
- BB Dakota
- Club Monaco
- Emilio Pucci
- OSCAR DE LA RENTA
- VERO MODA
- And so many more
As you can see, you will never run out of options when shopping for dresses at the Bay. They have dozens of brands for you to pick from, fitting every budget from small to big to massive.
Topshop the Bay
It was a happy day indeed for all Topshop lovers when the Bay bought in this iconic store to Canadian lands. No more did Canadian women and men have to watch enviously across the seas at Londoners who could buy Topshop fashion items on the cheap without a hassle. This British fast-fashion chain came to the Bay in 2011.
But those happy days have come to an end, as Arcadia (the parent company that owns Topshop/Topman) has declared bankruptcy. Before their bankruptcy, Topshop/Topman had 510 retail stores around the world, with 300 of them in the UK.
The Bay announced that they would be getting rid of Topshop in their retail stores by October 2021, as Asos (the UK-based retailer that bought Topshop) declared that they wouldn't take over any of the Topshop's retail stores.
Unfortunately, this means that Canadians interested in purchasing Topshop/Topman items would have to either travel to the UK to do so or go online to Asos.com.
The Bay Shoes
The most fun expedition in the world isn't to Mount Everest or even to the African Safari. But to the shoe section (both for women and men) at the Bay!
Who doesn't love the idea of browsing dozens of boots, sandals, shoes, and slippers, either for their next trip to the tropics or their next formal event? And the Bay is where it's at when it comes to shoes.
As with their dresses collection, they have hundreds of shoes from dozens of brands, which will leave you gasping for air as you try to figure out which shoe or sandal to purchase.
Some brands to watch out for in the Bay shoe section are:
- Cult Gaia
- Earth Shoes
- Good Man Brand
- London Fog
- And more
As you can see, the problem with going to the Bay shoe section isn't whether you will find your shoes, but if you will end up buying too many shoes. If you believe there's no such thing as too many shoes, then you are in the clear!
The Bay Jewellery
Searching for fine jewellery options at an affordable price? Then the Bay is the place to go for this.
You can find engagement rings and wedding bands at the Bay as well, and jewellery for the little ones. If you wish to find jewellery with gemstones of all kinds and sterling silver jewellery options, then the Bay has you covered.
When you need to dress (yourself or any of your family members) up from head to toe, your first stop should always be the clothing, shoes, and jewellery section at the Bay. This way you don't have to go to three or four different stores to find everything you need.
You can minimize all that running around from store to store, and spend it instead at a coffee shop or restaurant imbibing some delicious sustenance. That's what they call 'smart shopping'.
The Bay One Day Sale
Which Canadian hasn't heard of 'Bay Days', which is what Bay sale days are called? It's one of the best sales of the year, and it should not be missed. As seen from the title, these Bay Days only last for a day and are a great way to stock up on all your shopping needs in one massive sale day.
There are some insane deals to be found on Bay items during this one day sale (sales run from 12 am EST to 1159 pm EST on the day), and you need to be on top of your game to get at them. So make sure you sleep 8 hours the night before and have a big hearty breakfast before heading out.
Don't miss them, because once they are gone, they are gone, until a few months down the line. You should even think about taking the day off from work to take advantage of these massive discounts.
The Bay Black Friday
The Bay isn't one to baulk from giving discounts to their customers, especially on hot sale days like Black Friday and Cyber Monday. So if you are waiting to do your Christmas shopping until Black Friday, then make sure to check out the Bay either online or at their retail stores.
Another thing to remember is that if you are a VIP in the reward tier (all reward options are broken down into three specific reward tiers: Rewards, Rewards Plus, and Rewards VIP), then you can access even more savings and special offers during Black Friday and Bay Days. That's why you need to ensure that you sign up and earn your VIP status before these massive sales happen.
The Bay Customer Service
The Bay's customer service team is as nice as all Canadians are (and smart as well). They are available 7 days a week from 7 am EST to 2 am EST. The phone number is 1-800-521-2364. You can contact their customer service for all sorts of questions like:
- Their return policy
- The status of your orders
- Senior discounts accessibility
- Rewards points status
- Questions about the Hudson's Bay Mastercard
- Ordering items by phone
- And more
Their exceptional customer service team is always at hand to help you with all your shopping-related enquiries. There's no need to feel alone when shopping at the Bay. They also have a contact form on their website where you can put in your questions and get replies as quickly as they can get to it.
The Bay Promo Code
There are dozens of bargain websites online that offer discount promo codes for the Bay, like Bargain Moose, RetailMeNot, WagJag, and more. If you are interested in getting a discount on the items that you wish to purchase at the Bay, then consider joining up some of these websites to get notifications of any sales happening or discounts available at the Bay.
You can also follow the Bay on their social media channels for when they announce massive sales or discounts on their products only to their loyal subscribers and followers. If you love shopping and love getting a bargain, then you are going to love promo codes from the Bay.
The Bay also has many sales on their online store which you can access if you subscribe to their newsletter. So don't forget to sign up for that.
The Bay Has Changed Quite a Bit Over the Years
If you have lived in Canada for a while now (or even if you have moved there recently), you've probably seen the Bay go through massive upgrades, changes, and transformations. It's nice to know that even a big retail giant like the Bay can go through growing pains of sorts.
Remember, when the Bay owned Zellers! In fact, they recently had a Zellers pop-up store and that bought up a lot of nostalgia and many fond memories for many Canadians who grew up with Zellers.
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