New Stores in New York Signal Hope for Big Apple Retail
Recent openings celebrate fresh beginnings, aesthetic sensibility and localization.
THOUGH THE STRUGGLES of the past may challenge our hopes for the future, New York retail in 2022 demonstrated that the days ahead are brighter than the days behind us. Even in the face of great political turmoil, a relentless pandemic and difficult economic challenges, the past year offered a sense of hope and optimism across New York’s retail landscape.
A promising sign for the future is the buzz of new retail ventures throughout the city. Madison Avenue and SoHo are clearly leading the way, with the Flatiron District, Fifth Avenue and the West Village not far behind.
In a shuffling of the cards, Maison Hermès left its longtime location for a new 20,250-square-foot gem on Madison Avenue. The French luxury label opened its largest store at 706 Madison Avenue, offering five floors of elegance, a rooftop garden and a touch of architectural history.
The fulcrum of the store is its Federalist style edifice built in 1921 for the Bank of New York. The strategic connection to contiguous structures on Madison Avenue and 63rd Street created an distinctive footprint for the new flagship. Upon entering, customers are welcomed by a small Hansom cab from the 1830s on loan from the Émile Hermès collection.
The space is anchored by a curved stone staircase running from the ground level to the fourth floor. Supporting the staircase is a 49-foot-high wall that doubles as a vertical gallery displaying curated artwork, both commissioned and from the Hermès collection.Advertisement
The lights are also shining brightly at 711 Fifth Avenue with the opening of Mango. The Spanish retailer designated the Neoclassical building, former home to Disney and Polo Ralph Lauren, as its New York flagship. The Barcelona-based purveyor of moderately priced trendy clothes remodeled the 23,000-square-foot space around the structure’s existing limestone façade and high-reaching Palladian windows. With a mix of terrazzo and wood floors, earth-toned ceramic presentation walls and a series of repeating archways, the environment speaks to the retailers Mediterranean roots.
Further uptown, Wilson Sporting Goods opened a neighborhood store on the Upper East Side. Located on what is quickly becoming an important retail crossroad, Wilson joins the likes of Ulta Beauty and Lululemon at the intersection of East 86th Street and Third Avenue.Advertisement
The 8000-square-foot store, spanning two levels, features the brand’s first-ever “Equipment Room,” allowing customers to test baseball, tennis, pickleball, basketball and football products before purchasing. The lower level is a journey of curated experiences including a golf simulator and pickleball court, and services such as golf club fittings, tennis racket stringing and baseball glove personalization.
Downtown, the cobblestone streets of SoHo are buzzing with excitement as new store openings inject renewed vitality into the area. Mulberry, a purveyor of handbags, accessories and outerwear, celebrates its British heritage in a new location on Wooster Street. Designed by London-based Toogood Design, the environment offers a touch of the English countryside with suede presentation shelves complimented by peach and grey toned surface treatments.
Givenchy’s two-level, 3500-square-foot boutique on Greene Street features tailored men’s and women’s ready-to-wear and accessories, in addition to exclusive made-to-order programs.Advertisement
The color and materials palette delights the aesthetic sensibilities with the intermingling of stone gray, lavender and stainless steel. In a nod to SoHo’s architectural history, a dramatic open-to-below with skylight above, draws visitors to the lower level. Adding to the experience are a series of lifestyle mannequins strategically positioned around thoughtfully curated works of art.Advertisement
The new Loewe store on Greene Street presents a wide array of fashion and leather offerings in a luxurious setting framed with peach-toned vertical tiles, original oak floors, terracotta vases and a contemporary neon sculpture. A wooden staircase leads to the upper level where menswear is highlighted against a backdrop of hunter green porcelain tiles.
From the broad avenues of the Upper East Side to the narrow cobblestone streets of SoHo, New York retailers are reimagining customer engagement in the Big Apple as they look to the future with confidence and a newfound positive outlook.
PHOTO GALLERY (17 IMAGES)
📷 KEVIN SCOTT
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