Adventures in retail redirection: New possibilities - by Faith Hope Consolo

June 19, 2018 - Shopping Centers
Faith Hope Consolo,
Douglas Elliman

In our new reality of shopping, we are seeing digital and in-store experiences blur opening up exciting new possibilities for forward-thinking retailers. Our constantly connected lifestyle is igniting changes across NYC and retail landscapes are experiencing shifts as on-line meets bricks and mortar meets technology and augmented reality. Change is always good and fuels the future. Take a tour of our current shopping scene…

On Madison Ave., after 64 years, the Upper East Side vintage fashion icon Michael’s, is moving uptown from 1041 Madison Ave.to 1125 Madison Ave., giving up its second-floor space for a ground-floor home. Alexandre Birman developing an exclusive collection for its first store in the U.S. at 957 Madison Ave. Ready-to-wear clothing and accessories designer Gabriela Hearst to join Vera Wang at the Carlyle House, 991 Madison Ave. The Rebag flagship at 575 Madison Avenue is just five blocks south of the Hermès store and steps away from Chanel, Dior, Burberry, and Louis Vuitton. The Walking Company has reopened at 551 Madison Ave. Sayki menswear to open in The Roosevelt Hotel at 46th St. The Molteni Group has launched a new outpost at 160 Madison Ave. is the first global flagship to house furniture from all three of their brands; Molteni&C, Dada and UniFor.

On Fifth Ave., global art platform Artsy is joining forces with Dior, Bergdorf Goodman and American Express to spotlight some of the most significant artists of today; unveiled as The Artsy Vanguard, the collaborative project spans in-store displays and editorial content bringing together art and fashion. Puma to have a first US brand store at 609 Fifth Ave. in the former American Girl spot and across from Saks Fifth Ave. 

On 57th St., Giorgio’s of Palm Beach to enter the city in the former Victoria’s Secret at 34 E 57th St. Jacob & Co. unveiled the redesigned flagship boutique on the corner of 57th St. between Madison and Park. Field Entertainment and Universal Brand Development taking 218 West 57th Street to develop DreamWorks Trolls the Experience. Expect to find 3-D technology, a Trolls hair salon and a life-size Trolls village. The 90-minute walk through will also feature augmented reality and several other interactive play areas for kids.

In Midtown, French furniture design company Roche Bobois, to relocate to 950 Third Ave.

In Herald Sq., Macy’s acquired Story, the concept store, focusing on in-store experiences and brand activations with the point of view of a magazine, changes like a gallery, and sells things like a store. Every four to eight weeks, the space reinvents itself.

In Times Sq., beauty continues to conquer as Coty, the beauty products maker, inked a deal at 719 Seventh Ave. for a flagship retail space. Jimmy Buffet’s Margaritaville Holdings, announced that it’s constructing a 29-story, 234-room resort on the corner of Seventh Avenue and West 40th St. to open in 2020; The Times Sq. Margaritaville Resort  to feature “several Margaritaville food and beverage concepts, a rooftop pool and retail businesses.” Women’s apparel e-commerce retailer MM.Lafleur took 130 West 42nd St. 

In Union Sq., Bulletin, a start-up will open its third physical retail store in NYC; operating as a membership-based retail model, each of the 60 female-led brands will “rent” retail shelf space to host their product.

In SoHo, Trader Joe’s Soho edition is here at 233 Spring St. expanding upon its recently debuted location on the Upper West Side at Columbus Ave. and West 93rd St. Fitness is featured as Peloton took 152 Christopher St. and Y7 Studio, the original hip-hop yoga studio to come to 250 East Houston St. Gucci’s store opened at 63 Wooster St. in what was formerly a pencil factory, spanning almost an entire city block. Mackenzie-Childs will relocate from 20 West 57th St. to 165 Spring St., also known as 410 West Broadway, previously Emporio Armani. LA-based designer Anine Bing has a new two-level store at 81 Greene St. E-commerce startup luggage creator Away coming to 82 Mercer St. Italian clothing designer Eleventy is opening its first permanent NYC flagship at 77 Greene St. Allbirds, known for its popular sustainable wool sneaker, will have a permanent retail space, 73 Spring St. Michael Kors, has leased 2,850 s/f at 90 Prince St., currently Moncler will be leaving 90 Prince for a bigger space at 99 Prince St. Cuyana now at 29 Prince St. E-commerce bedding and bath goods retailer Parachute Home will have a first N.Y. brick and mortar spot at 129 Grand St. Brooklyn based sneaker brand Greats has opened its second storefront this year at 42 Crosby St. Premium handcrafted leather bags and accessories label, Ateliers Auguste will open its first U.S. pop-up at 251 Elizabeth St. Feminist fashion brand Wildfang opened at 252 Lafayette, selling merchandise with a message.

In TriBeCa, premium bespoke menswear company Alton Lane has opened its second NYC flagship at 7 Harrison St.

In the Financial District, famed Leather Spa is opening inside Saks Fifth Avenue at Brookfield Place, 250 Vesey St.

The key to the future is adapting to the latest and the greatest, presenting a more personalized experience to the shopper. In our world of instant gratification, bricks-and-mortar stores have to set themselves apart to succeed. Brands who focus on creating an experience that goes beyond the transaction are gaining a competitive edge and leading the way into the future.

Happy Shopping!

Faith Hope Consolo is the chairman of the retail leasing, marketing and sales division and Douglas Elliman Real Estate, New York, N.Y.

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