Our friends at RACKED scooped us today with the news of what will become of at least one of Ralph Lauren's now shuttered Rugby locations. A new photo reveals plywood covering indicating that the University Place store will become a freestanding Denim & Supply boutique. Up until now, the label has been sold exclusively through Macy's and Ralph Lauren's website, but this, as far as we can tell, will be the first freestanding store for this particular division of the Ralph Lauren Empire.
It's not a total surprise that the designer would replace his defunct younger skewing brand with a newer, younger skewing brand. In fact, we have a theory that the more mainstream and widely distributed Denim & Supply brand cannibalized the potential success of the slightly more rarefied Rugby chain. In any event, Lauren has never been one to let a good real estate opportunity go unused. In fact, several of his downtown stores have been converted from one Lauren label to another. We do not yet know if the remaining Bleecker Street Rugby store (which was originally a RRL shop) will be similarly converted or if it will become the home of yet another of the designer's brands. Stay tuned for more developments.