Is Nordstrom Planning A Rack Store Just A Block From Its Manhattan Flagship?

Traditionally, prestigious department stores have made an effort to keep their outlet stores a safe distance away from their full-line flagships. After all, why confuse the issue for customers? It looks like Nordstrom may be busting that paradigm as The Real Deal is reporting that executives from the off-price Nordstrom Rack are eyeing a space at 3 Columbus Circle (pictured above) for a new location along with another on West 34th Street. That would put a Rack store less than a block away from the huge, full line flagship store that is being built at the bottom of a skyscraper at 225 West 57th Street. The Rack would be in the southeast corner of the building, replacing a Bank of America branch, and literally across Broadway from an entrance to the mother ship store that is expected to open in 2019. While the flagship will be a whopping seven floors, the proposed Rack store will be also be a sizable 40,ooo square feet over three levels, giving Nordstrom something of a mega-shopping headquarters that has never been seen among Manhattan's rarefied department stores where shopping neighborhoods have been strictly stratified, and outlets are more preferably sequestered in discount centers like Woodbury Commons. Outside of independent off-price chains like Century 21 and the defunct Lehmann's, Filene's Basement and Daffy's, Manhattan had traditionally been an outlet-free zone for its luxury department stores. Lately, however, that has been changing, in part thanks to Nordstrom which first entered New York City with a Rack location just off Union Square. Now a Bloomingdale's outlet is set to open later this season at 72nd Street and Broadway, and Saks Off 5th will open in the Financial District at 1 Liberty Plaza, just on the other side of the Word Trade Center complex from an upcoming full line store in Brookfield Place. Still, if this deal comes to fruition, Nordstrom will be the first one to have its own outlet located practically across the street from one of its largest flagship stores.

Nordstrom Rack eyeing 3 Columbus Circle space (The Real Deal)


Nordstrom Is Still Looking For A Second NYC Store

NordstromFlagshipWith a major Midtown flagship on the way in a few years and Rack stores popping up in a few boroughs, WWD tells us today that Nordstrom is still looking for a spot for a second full line store in New York City. And where are they looking?
Big surprise, right?
Speculation centers around several Lower Manhattan sites ranging from spaces on Wall Street to the Howard Hughes Corporation's complete renovation of Pier 17. None of the potential spaces are perfect slam dunks. They will all take some serious negotiations, and Nordstrom, as we have seen from the previous rounds of rumors regarding the store that will eventually open around the corner of Broadway and 57th Street, will kick a lot of tires before they make a final decision. They are extremely picky about location (as they should be) and, in most cases, insist on building their stores from the ground up which will be extremely difficult if not impossible in the landmark-laden financial District. The World Trade Center retail spaces are said to be too small to accommodate the 230 square foot flagship sized store that the Seattle-based chain is looking to construct, even though space might have freed up now that the much rumored talks to sign luxury stores from Tiffany, Tom Ford and Giorgio Armani boutiques are now rumored to have stalled due to their potential proximity to both Century 21 and the upcoming Saks Off-Fifth. Pier 17 would be a dramatic spot that would allow the chain's preferred construction requirements, but it is the site of a previous retail project that was a colossal failure. Saks has taken the largest space in Brookfield Place, and that store is only going to be 85,000 square feet, a little more than a third of the size of the presumed Nordstrom store. That leaves other buildings around the area that may or may not fit Nordstrom's bill. We don't expect the chain to settle on a space anytime soon, but keep in mind that when Nordstrom wants to put a store somewhere, they eventually find a way to do it, so add another great big department store to the list of openings before the end of this decade. That makes one new Barneys, one Neiman Marcus, one new Saks Fifth Avenue and now, two Nordstroms coming to Manhattan.
Five big stores.
Let's just hope people keep spending.

Nordstrom Said Eyeing Downtown NYC (WWD)


Nordstrom's New York Home Will Be The World's Tallest Residential Tower

We have known where Manhattan's first full-line Nordstrom store will be for a while, but we haven't known exactly what it will look like —until today.  New York YIMBY has the latest details on the building designed by Adrian Smith and Gordon Gill (pictured above) and has acquired new drawings of what Extell Development has dubbed the Nordstrom Tower at 225 West 57th Street. The new information puts the building at 1,775 feet upon its projected completion in 2008, making it the world's tallest residential tower and almost the city's tallest building just one foot shorter than One World Trade Center. The building will even top the roofline of Chicago's famous Willis Tower which was once the biggest building in the world.

The relatively sudden skyscraper war is distressing to many New Yorkers who see midtown's rapid proliferation of ultra-tall skyscrapers and other architectural changes happening at the expense of preservation and sunlight, but for Nordstrom it could work our quite well. It can't be a bad thing to have a captive customer base of wealthy homeowners right upstairs —assuming that the condos, which are bound to be staggeringly expensive, will actually have full-time residents —but that's a whole other discussion.

Nordstrom Tower to Become World’s Tallest Residential Building at 1,775 Feet (New York YIMBY) 


Nordstrom Sets Up Shop For Sarah Jessica Parker's SJP Shoes In SoHo

Don't be fooled by those Nordstrom banners that have appeared outside the old Tommy Hilfiger store on West Broadway. We still have a few more years to wait for a proper, permanent Nordstrom store. They are only there for the Pop-up shop being staged to launch Sarah Jessica Parker's SJP shoe collection this weekend. Tomorrow through Sunday will be the only opportunity to buy the collection in person  in New York City as it will be otherwise available only at selected Nordstrom stores and We had mistakenly thought that the chain would re-purpose its former Treasure & Bond space for the event a few steps downtown, but the former Hilfiger space, yet another store in SoHo that can't seem to find a permanent resident, will serve as a more polished, higher profile venue for the fleeting shop that pretty much everyone is expecting to be mobbed for the duration. We got a bit of a peek inside (through the window) to see the shop pretty much set up and ready for business. It appears that there will be a few apparel and accessory options available to complement the SJP shoes, if that rack of trench coats is any indication. Our friends at Racked have ascertained that Parker herself will be making her appearances at the store on Friday at 10am, Saturday at 3pm, and Sunday at 11am which is essential information if you either want to make sure you get a chance to see the Actress/Designer/Perfumer herself, or are a terribly blasé New Yorker who couln't care less about seeing celebrities and wants to avoid the most frenzied shopping times.

Have a look at the gallery below for a few more views including store hours and a peek inside.

SJP by Sarah Jessica Parker Pop-Up Store by Nordstrom runs from February 28 through March 2 at 372 West Broadway at Broome Street, SoHo
Sarah Jessica Parker's Shoe Line SJP Gets A 3-Day Pop-Up

  • SJP-Nordstrom-Inside
  • SJP-Nordstrom-Hours
  • SJP-Nordstrom-Ext


Sarah Jessica Parker Will Re-Open Treasure & Bond For Her Pop-Up


For everyone who is waiting to find out where Sarah Jessica Parker will be appearing in New York to launch her new SJP shoe collection, WWD is reporting that the 3-day pop-up store will be located in the space that used to be Treasure & Bond at 350 West Broadway in SoHo. The actress/perfumer and now cobbler will reportedly be on-site for all three days to meet and greet customers and sell some shoes, so prepare yourselves for a crush of loyal Sex And The City fans to inundate the shop. The line is to be exclusive to Nordstrom stores, so it is not terribly surprising to see that the pop-up store will be in the space of the now-shuttered Nordstrom-owned boutique, which the retailer, apparently, still controls. After the New York appearance, Parker will be visiting Nordstrom stores in Seattle, Los Angeles, Chicago, Miami and Dallas through March 9th. The line will initially launch on February 28th on the store's website as well as in only 25 out of 117 Nordstrom locations including Garden State Plaza and Cherry Hill in New Jersey and Roosevelt Field on Long Island in the New York City area.

SJP by Sarah Jessica Parker Pop-up February 28 - March 2 at 350 West Broadway between Broome & Grand Streets, SoHo
Sarah Jessica Parker Teams With Nordstrom (WWD)
Pop-Up Alert: Sarah Jessica Parker's Shoe Line SJP Gets A 3-Day Pop-Up


Sarah Jessica Parker Returns To Fashion With A New Shoe Line

SJPvogueThere's no need to encourage her to try, try again. Sarah Jessica Parker seems determined to make her mark on the fashion industry as more than just the style icon role that "Sex And The City" thrust her into. Starting early next year, Nordstrom will exclusively debut the SJP collection of shoes, handbags and a few trench coats for good measure. Parker may have learned to play to her strengths having seen her popularly priced sportswear line Bitten fizzle as retailer Steve & Barrys imploded her her creative director job at Halston come to little after that label once again went in another direction. Now, Parker will be focusing on the item most associated with her and her alter ego, Carrie Bradshaw: Shoes! And to ensure success, she has teamed up with George Malkemus who as CEO at Manolo Blahnik has had years of valuable experience keeping the actress and countless other women well-shod in fanciful footwear. At the very least, she and her future customers can feel confident that she has surrounded herself with people who really know what they are doing.

While not quite as bargain-priced as Bitten, the new line is planned to retail relatively affordably between $200 and $300, with handbags under $700. It will takes its design cues cues from the late 1970s and 80s, a time before shoes and bags became so embellished as to be hazardous for the wearer. Parker tells,

“We’re putting new colors together that people don’t typically do, just beautiful combinations that you wish existed in your closet. And in terms of bags, thinking about that period of the seventies into the eighties, what those women were carrying, taking away the bells and the whistles and hardware and really making it about the bag.”

Leading shoe designers of the time like Maud Frizon and Charles Jourdan serve as inspiration, and Parker promises that everything will be produced in either Europe or New York City —so, no collapsing Bangladesh factories for her, thank you.

Heart and Sole: Sarah Jessica Parker Launches the SJP Collection (Vogue Daily)


Why The GQ's SoHo Pop-Up Store Is Important For Nordstrom

Above, you can see the camouflage-covered couch that sits at the center of the GQ & Nordstrom Pop-Up shop that has taken up residence at SoHo's Treasure & Bond store through this coming Sunday. Without showing any actual merchandise, this piece of furniture tells you almost everything you need to know about the store, It is a tribute to that guy (or, more likely fashion editor) for whom there can never be enough camouflage print. It's that raw-denim-heritage-brand-longwing-brogue-stack-of-bracelets-double-monkstrap-shoe-sprezzatura-worshipping guy who has captivated the American menswear culture. It's the guy who loves anything authentically American, but loves it more if it comes by way of Tokyo or Milan.  It is, in many ways, like a current issue of GQ encapsulated in retail form, brought to life by Nordstrom.

GQ-Nordstrom-CamoDisplayWhat it doesn't look like is Nordstrom's men's department —but that appears to be changing. People who know Nordstrom know that it has one of the largest upscale menswear businesses in the retail industry. It has nearly three times the number of locations as Neiman Marcus or Saks Fifth Avenue, and menswear vendors who sell to Nordstrom will tell you that it is their biggest account by far. What Nordstrom hasn't had, however is a strong fashion image for its men's department. For decades, the direction there has been classic and conservative, and that has been extremely lucrative, but, in case you haven't heard, Nordstrom is coming to New York in a few years, and what plays as traditional in much of the rest of America can come off as bland in New York where Nordstrom aims to compete with Saks, Barneys and Bloomingdale's more than Lord & Taylor and Macy's.

Nordstrom has always had a strong women's designer business in it's top-ranking locations, which it bolstered seven years ago by buying the boutique Jeffrey and making the shop's former owner Jeffrey Kalinsky its chief merchant for men's and women's designer merchandise. Kalinsky seems to have mostly concerned himself with the women's side of the business, but a year ago, the Seattle based store hired former Bergdorf Goodman Men's Fashion Director and President of Simon Spurr, Tommy Fazio. This pop-up store and the company's recent partnership with GQ can be seen as a result of Fazio's presence in the company, and perhaps a glimpse of a more fashion-forward Nordstrom men's business of the future.

GQ-camobaseballsThe Shophound's recent visits to a couple of high-profile Nordstrom branches has seen the addition of some designer labels like Dolce & Gabbana and Rag & Bone for men that have not been seen in the store in the past and don't yet blend in so easily with the rest of its relatively conservative men's department, but the pop-up store pulls together the kind brands that can bridge that gap between traditional and stylish. Taking advantage of a fashion moment in menswear that is centered around new interpretations of classic American style, Nordstrom has an opportunity to lure in the kind of customer who might have thought the store was a little too conservative for his taste. To that end, and with GQ's guidance, this shop has been filled with a mix of heritage brands and designers like Michael Bastian, in both his main and Gant labels and Todd Snyder as well as specialty lines beloved by fashion insiders like Warby Parker eyewear and Miansai bracelets. There are shoes aplenty —this is a Nordstrom project, after all, and lots and lots of camo. There are even some camouflage patterned baseballs. When the Shophound stopped by last Friday afternoon, the store was buzzing with customers, so when Nordstrom finally opens on West 57th Street in 2018, don't be surprised to see a camouflage couch in the middle of the men's department.

GQ & Nordstrom at Treasure & Bond through September 16th
350 West Broadway between Broome & Grand Streets, SoHo



Nordstrom Officially Taking West 57th Street Location —In 2018

Well, we said don't believe it until it's confirmed, and yesterday's press conference at the company's Treasure & Bond specialty store in SoHo with Mayor Bloomberg in tow should be confirmation enough for anyone. Seattle based department store chain Nordstrom has finally chosen the base of yet to be built skyscraper planned for 225 West 57th Street at Broadway for its first New York City store. Here are the facts you have been waiting to hear:

The store will be Nordstrom's tallest at seven floors encompassing 285,000 square feet. That's bigger than Barneys and Bergdorf's Women's Store, but smaller by half or more than Saks, Lord & Taylor, Bloomingdale's and certainly Macy's Herald Square. The site extends through the block to 58th Street and is expected to have a main entrance on Broadway. So far, no architect has been chosen for either the store, or the building it will be anchoring which is being built by Extell Development. Interestingly, Nordstrom will not be paying rent, but will buy its space as a commercial condominium for a price that was not disclosed, but is sure to be breathtaking. Ultimately, store executives found the 57th street tower to be a less risky location than the Hudson Yards site the company had long been rumored to be circling according to Nordstrom’s director of merchandising, Peter Nordstrom who appeared at the conference as well as Extell President Gary Barnett.

There will be endless discussion about the effect Nordstrom will have on the neighborhood and the city's shopping scene in general, particularly in regards to the chain's famous high service ethic, but the store is not expected to open its doors for six years, so that will give competitors plenty of time to up their game.

Nordstrom will have a bit of work to do as well before it sails into Manhattan, particularly in securing vendors. While many customers know Nordstrom as moderate to high end store, it's flagship locations carry designer collections comparable to Saks, Bergdorf's and Barneys top offerings. The chain will want to put its best merchandise in the New York store, but many of those exclusive designers operate with very exclusive distribution strategies. It may take six years to convince some of the vendors they will want to carry to add another point of sale in midtown Manhattan without cannibalizing strong businesses thay have developed at Saks, Bergdorf's and Barney's along with their own boutiques.

But now the game of speculating where Nordstrom will go is officially finished. Now we have six years of watching the skyscraper and store go up and waiting to see what happens when everyone's favorite store from the Pacific Northwest goes up against a team of native New York retail powerhouses.

Nordstrom To Open First Full-Line Store In NYC ( Press Release)


Latest Nordstrom Rumors Focus On West 57th Street

1780BwayAt some point, Nordstrom will build a full-line store in Manhattan, but, for more than a decade, the question has been where? The chain has been placed at numerous sites in the city from the former Drake Hotel site at Park Avenue and 56th Street to the Hudson Yards development on the far West Side to any number of other spots around town WWD tells us that the latest location under serious consideration is in a skyscraper set to be built at 225 West 57th Street with a main entrance at 1780 Broadway. In a point of confusion, WWD has mistaken the building for another being developed by the same landlord at 157 West 57th Street between Sixth And Seventh Avenues which was also under serious consideration by Nordstrom. This more recent choice is reported to be under rapid development, and expected to be completed by the end of 2013, which could put a Nordstrom opening as early as Spring 2014.

There are pros and cons in many of the sites Nordstrom has considered, but this one looks like it may be  among the most favorable. Nordstrom almost always insists on its own buildout with its own very specific store design. This would be one of the rare sites in midtown Manhattan that would allow for this requirement. The corner store on Broadway and West 57th Street would put the chain in an area with a golden combination of wealthy residents, high tourist traffic and hotel density and close proximity to numerous subway lines. Nordstrom may never get an opportunity for a better location. Drawbacks may include the fact that the site is far west of Manhattan's luxury sweet spot which begins at 57th and Fifth and extends East to Park Avenue. Moving West on 57th street, one finds a less prestigious mix of stores heading toward Broadway, though Nordstrom's strength as a draw could ultimately change that. The Shops at Columbus Circle has already improved the area's retail mix somewhat. Still, its neighbors would include a TJMaxx and a (possibly faltering) Daffy's, not Chanel and Prada. The store ultimately could serve as a West Side counterpart to the Bloomingdale's Flagship at 59th and Lexington Avenue, creating a new luxury shopping corridor between Fifth and Broadway. After all, if there's any city that loves a new shopping corridor, it's New York.

As with any Nordstrom news, this is to be taken with more than a few grains of salt, but this rumor seems to have a lot of traction. Nothing is official without an announcement from the family-controlled company, and they have been notoriously picky, so stay tuned, and expect a twist or two.

Nordstrom Search for Manhattan Flagship Continues (WWD)
Nordstrom selects different West Side Extell space for its New York City flagship (The Real Deal)
Nordstrom finally coming to Manhattan (NYPost)


Nordstrom Takes A Bite Of Bonobos

BONOBOS-1It's a win for both sides as Nordstrom has made a $16.4 million cash investment in Bonobos, the New York based men's sportswear company. For the online-only brand, it will be an opportunity to launch their product in one of America's most popular department stores with a perfectly matched target customer. Bonobos made its reputation by banishing the baggy khaki pant and creating upscale men's trousers that fit so well that they could be purchased online without being tried on in person. Now expanded to a full sportswear collection, the label will be make its retail debut exclusively in Nordstrom's infuential men's departments.

In addition to launching a popular line, Nordstrom's investment will also allow the seattle-based chain to take advantage of the prodigious online retailing expertise cultivated at Bonobos to enhance its own evolving web business. Quiet, clever acquisition has been a business strategy for Nordstrom for a few years now. While it has not purchased Bonobos outright, the store recently got into the online flash sale business by buying HauteLook, and many customers remain unaware that the exclusive Meatpacking District boutique Jeffrey is also owned by Nordstrom, and its founder, Jeffrey Kalinsky is the chain's Executive Vice President of Designer Merchandising. There is no word that Bonobos co-founder Andy Dunn will be taking on an official role at Nordstrom, but should the 116-store chain increase its investment by buying the company, it's hugely successful but extremely conservative men's business could benefit from the fashion shot-in-the arm that Dunn could offer.

As for us in New York, we still don't have our own Nordstrom yet (though we are the only city with the chain's Treasure & Bond division and there are rumours of another Rack coming to Sixth Avenue in Chelsea). This news continues to keep Nordstrom's status as the most fascinating store we can't shop at just yet.

Stores Go Online to Find a Perfect Fit (NYTimes)