It may still be mild outside, but in its new Denver store, Uniqlo is hoping shoppers will have winter on their minds.

The Japanese clothing retailer will open its first Colorado location on Friday at 10 a.m. in the 16th Street Mall, the two-story store in the Denver Pavilions that’s filled with fall sweaters, cozy underwear, and brightly toned down jackets.

  • Helen H. Richardson, The Denver Post

    Rob Henderson, far right, with Apex Tint, places store labels on the walls of the new Japanese clothing store Uniqlo as they prepare to open his store on 16th Street Mall on October 27, 2016 in Denver, Colorado. Uniqlo, the popular Japanese clothing store, opens Friday and is the first store in Colorado.

  • Helen H. Richardson, The Denver Post

    Store Manager Rolena Richardson overlooks Uniqlo’s HeatTech underwear on display in Uniqlo at the 16th Street Mall in Denver, Colorado on October 27, 2016. Uniqlo, the popular Japanese clothing store, opens Friday and is the first store in Colorado.

  • Helen H. Richardson, The Denver Post

    New Japanese clothing store, Uniqlo, is preparing to open its store on 16th Street Mall on October 27, 2016 in Denver, Colorado. Uniqlo, the popular Japanese clothing store, opens Friday and is the first store in Colorado.

  • Helen H. Richardson, The Denver Post

    Rob Henderson, right, with Apex Tint, places a store label on glass at the new Japanese clothing store Uniqlo as they prepare to open his store on 16th Street Mall on October 27, 2016 in Denver, Colorado. Uniqlo, the popular Japanese clothing store, opens Friday and is the first store in Colorado.

  • Helen H. Richardson, The Denver Post

    Shelly Wu, left, area manager, and Dani Vincent, area manager, human resources, center, look at the displays as they prepare shelves and displays for the opening of Uniqlo on 16th Street Mall on October 27, 2016 in Denver, Colorado , to lock. Uniqlo, the popular Japanese clothing store, opens Friday and is the first store in Colorado.

  • Helen H. Richardson, The Denver Post

    Fashion reporter Khoa Sinclair looks at some of the merchandise on display at Uniqlo on 16th Street Mall in Denver, Colorado on October 27, 2016. Uniqlo, the popular Japanese clothing store, opens Friday and is the first store in Colorado.

  • Helen H. Richardson, The Denver Post

    New Japanese clothing store, Uniqlo, is preparing to open its store on 16th Street Mall on October 27, 2016 in Denver, Colorado. Uniqlo, the popular Japanese clothing store, opens Friday and is the first store in Colorado.

  • Helen H. Richardson, The Denver Post

    VIP shoppers get a sneak peek at Uniqlo, the new Japanese clothing store, as people prepare to open its store on 16th Street Mall on October 27, 2016 in Denver, Colorado. Uniqlo, the popular Japanese clothing store, opens on Friday and is the first store in Colorado.

  • Helen H. Richardson, The Denver Post

    Fashion reporter Khoa Sinclair looks at some of the merchandise on display at Uniqlo on 16th Street Mall in Denver, Colorado on October 27, 2016. Uniqlo, the popular Japanese clothing store, opens Friday and is the first store in Colorado.

  • Helen H. Richardson, The Denver Post

    A sock display at the new Japanese clothing store, Uniqlo, preparing to open on 16th Street Mall on October 27, 2016 in Denver, Colorado. Uniqlo, the popular Japanese clothing store, opens Friday and is the first store in Colorado.

“A personal goal of mine was to create this Uniqlo in Denver, not just a big box,” said General Manager Rolena Richardson during a media tour on Thursday.

Downtown and mall officials also have high expectations for the Japanese retailer. Uniqlo is known for its high quality yet affordable selection of clothing. He chose the pavilions only for his second location in the US, not the East or West Coast, and hired 130 people to run the business.

VIP buyers will get a taste of Uniqlo on October 27, 2016 in Denver.

Helen H. Richardson, The Denver Post

VIP buyers will get a taste of Uniqlo on October 27, 2016 in Denver.

“This is another important building block in the downtown development,” said Mark Sidell, president of Gart Properties, owner of the downtown mall. “I suspect the sales will be very, very impressive. The product line and the offer relate to a wide range of men, women and children and can lead to an even wider acceptance than H&M. “

Of course, H&M entered the Denver market in 2011 with great enthusiasm. The Swedish fast fashion retailer’s most dedicated fans, who camp overnight, are among the first to walk into the Pavilions flagship store.

Uniqlo may not have the same brand awareness on opening day, but Sidell said he expected “3x traffic” between Uniqlo and the previous tenant of the space. Overall, pavilion sales per square foot have nearly doubled since Gart Properties bought the downtown mall in 2008.

“If you are already familiar with Uniqlo, you will likely be in line for the Friday opening. It’s really an exciting thing for us, ”said Sidell. “If you are new to it, you’ll love it.”

From a business perspective, another first-time retailer’s decision to move to downtown Denver should only “open doors to potential retailers,” said Tami Door, CEO of the Downtown Denver Partnership.

A sock display at Uniqlo on October 27, 2016 in Denver.

Helen H. Richardson, The Denver Post

A sock display at Uniqlo on October 27, 2016 in Denver.

“Whenever an area, especially an urban center, launches a retailer, it sends a very strong message to other retailers about the opportunity and potential for success in that area,” Door said.

The downtown store is also likely to remain Uniqlo’s only outpost in the market for a while.

Although the company’s employees have expressed interest in future expansion in the region, Uniqlo’s agreement with the pavilions is structured in such a way that “they will be severely deterred from opening another store in the two years after opening,” said Sidell.

“Uniqlo, you have many options,” he said. “Your Denver selection is really eye catching for other retailers.”

The 17,000 square foot store in Denver is one of Uniqlo’s larger locations in the United States. Go up the red hand-guided escalator and a corner of the second level is dedicated to local partner businesses.

The ads change about every eight weeks depending on the season, Richardson said. On the first day, Elevation Cycles and the outdoor equipment supplier Feral Mountain Co. are among the companies featured.

Nearby, mannequins display staples such as the brand’s popular ultra-light down vests and jackets as part of the business casual and athleisure look. It’s a deliberate lifestyle tip in Denver, Richardson said.

“We are not trying to compete with Patagonia or North Face with our microlight,” she said. “We want to be a complement.”

Richardson looks forward to introducing additional Uniqlo designer collaborations and lines to Denver customers as the business takes its place in the market.

This includes Uniqlo’s spring collection of bright graphic t-shirts – perhaps a more appropriate option for an 80-degree day.

Uniqlo Grand Opening Block Party

When: Friday 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Where: 16th Street Mall and Glenarm Place (The store is on 16th Street and Tremont Street.)

Free