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This Season's Barneys Warehouse
Sale To Be A Week Shorter

Last Spring, The Shophound and a bunch of other bloggers were tossing around the rumor that the Barneys Warehouse Sale might be discontinued by the store's new management. Well, breathe a sigh of relief, because it hasn't been deep-sixed just yet. Our friends at Racked tell us that the sale will take place from Thursday, August 25th to Labor Day, September 5th.

Wait... that's it?

Yes, folks, Experienced Warehouse Sale shoppers will notice that an entire week has been lopped off of the sale's traditional two-and-a-half-week running time. So, the rumors weren't entirely unfounded. The sale is still with us, but somewhat diminished. We happend to stop by the Madison Avnue store this week, and we noticed that most (but not all) departments have had their sale merchandise removed from the floor in favor of new Fall goods, so your next chance for some summer designer bargains from Barneys will be in about four weeks.

What does this shortened time frame mean for New York bargain shoppers' beloved late-summer ritual? We just don't know yet, although we hope it means that the merchandise will start the sale at a price that is already discounted from the last selling price in the full-line stores. We aren't counting on that, but it would be nice, especially since The Shophound doesn't ever buy anything there until the middle of the second week anyway. Barnys may be trying out a shortened time frame so shoppers will feel a greater sense of urgency and buy right away instead of taking their chances and waiting for the deeper second week discounts. We won't really know until the sale actually happens, but we wouldn't be surprised if it is extra crowded and super-annoyingly-long-checkout-line-ish this season.
Can't wait.

Hallelujah! The Barneys Warehouse Sale is Officially Coming Back (RACKED)
The Reasons Why The Barneys Warehouse Sale May End ...And Why It Might Not (03.15.11)


David Beckham Back In His Underwear For H&M

BeckhamImage He certainly got quite a lot of attention modeling underwear for Giorgio Armani, but that contract has long expired, so David Beckham is launching his own line of men's "Bodywear" this February at H&M just in time for Valentine's Day. The line will be exclcusively available through the Sweden-based retailer' 1,800 stores in 40 countries.

Of her latest collaborator, Ann-Sofie Johansson, H&M’s Head of Design, says, “David Beckham is a true icon both of sport and style. It is incredibly exciting for H&M to be entering into a long-term partnership with him for his DAVID BECKHAM bodywear line. It is the start of an amazing adventure for us at H&M."

Nice, right? But we know what you're all thinking:
"Where's the advertising campaign?"

Sadly, today's press release came with no pictures. After all, why would H&M want to tip their hand this early in the game? We're expecting those "Beckham in his new undies" pictures to start appearing sometime around the new year, and we'll be sure to pass them along as soon as we get 'em, because we're generous like that. In the meantime, imagine what the windows of the Fifth Avenue Flagship will look like when it's time for that product launch. [Shophound Inbox]

David Beckham (Official Site)


A Last Look At (capsule) & Project

We had more material from last week's trade shows than we could make individual posts for, so we took it all and made a nice slideshow to wrap just a few things up and move on with our life. Look for news from Mark McNairy, Todd Snyder and all kinds of French Sailor jerseys. Apparently, they are a thing that's happening in a big way, so get ready.

Click HERE for more previews.

Project & (capsule) Spring 2012 Slideshow


Ghurka Escapes The Plaza
And Heads For Fifth Avenue

GhurkaTheSherryNetherlands After a stint in the failed experiment known as The Plaza Retail Collection, Ghurka, the American leathergoods brand has decided to move across the street to rival hotel The Sherry-Netherland and a store that you will be able to walk into right from the street!

Location is everything when it comes to running a store, and while many enjoyed snickering at the perceived folly of opening a luxury mini-mall in the basement of the Plaza Hotel, few seemed interested in actually going there to shop. Despite the best efforts of some enthusiastic publicists, the location seems to sit somewhere between Siberia and Oblivion in the minds of shoppers. For a company like Ghurka, having its only boutique hidden away in such a place wasted the opportunities that Manhattan offers to have your product seen by not only wealthy local customers but also free-spending tourists from all over the world. Now its upcoming 1,140 square foot flagship store will be visibly in the company of Apple and Bergdorf Goodman at the corner of 59th Street and Fifth Avenue. As far as we can tell, Ghurka is the most prominent of the retailers who have ditched The Plaza for a more advantageous location.
Definitely won't be the last.

Ghurka (Official Site)

We have received some additional information regarding the new store. Ghurka will be taking over the former A.Testoni store which is on the 59th Street side of the Sherry-Netherland building next to A La Vieille Russie. We have been informed that they are not, in fact, closing the store in the Plaza, but simply expanding with a second, much more visible addition.


More Apple News In SoHo And Grand Central Include Renderings &
A $1.4 Million Temporary Store

It's like someone turned on a spigot and the news about Apple stores keeps gushing out. While we were all digesting the news about Apple's upcoming store in Grand Central Station, AppleInsider discovered that 72 Greene Street (pictured above) will be the site of a temporary store in SoHo to replace the Spring Street Apple unit while it undergoes renovations and expansion.

With some additional work from ifoAppleStore.com (There's a whole cottage industry of Apple blogs out there) the tireless bloggers combed through building permits to conclude that the retailer would take over both ground floor retail spaces, the cellar and half of the second floor at the historic 1873 cast-iron, French Renaissance style building between Spring and Broome streets that sits about a block and a half from the former post office building holding the store set to go under construction within the next few months. This presumably means that King Of Greene Street, the boutique in one of the ground floor spaces that was named after the imposing building's longtime nickname, has closed, which, sadly, we hadn't noticed. The bloggers deduced who the renovating tenant was by matching the architectural firm cited in the documents with one which has frequently worked for Apple in the past. The most striking feature is the price tag on the store. Apple will be shelling out $1.4 million to alter and use the space for only a few months. When it will make the move is unclear, but all signs point to a mid-September launch for the newest iPhone, so we are guessing that the temporary replacement store will be up and running in plenty of time to prepare for that particular bit of rabid customer frenzy.

As for Grand Central, The Wall Street Journal's Metropolis blog has renderings of the upcoming store in the main terminal there courtesy of MTA officials who also announced that the historic station would also be welcoming a Shake Shack (Let's just move in there permanently, shall we?). The officials reported that the store would take only four months to build, which suggests that Apple will be making few if any architectural additions or changes to the existing landmarked structure and that it will be open in time for Holiday shopping. In addition, the Journal estimated the annual rent of the space up to $1.1 million —higher than earlier estimates— which would be on top of the $5 million it reports the company paid Chef Charlie Palmer to shut down his Metrazur restaurant more than eight years before his lease would have expired. Palmer, in stark contrast, was only paying $263,997 a year for a somewhat smaller space. This means that the MTA more than quadrupled its income for the space plus a portion of the balcony which had not been previously rented. It's no wonder that they were so eager to strike a deal with Apple.

And that's this morning's New York City Apple retail update. If things keep going the way they have been, we may have a whole new bunch of news by this afternoon

Apple building $1.4M temporary store in New York's SoHo neighborhood (AppleInsider)
Apple Won’t Skimp On Temporary NYC Store (ifoAppleStore)
First Glimpse of Apple’s Plans for Grand Central Terminal (Metropolis/WSJ)


Lease Reportedly Signed
For Apple Grand Central Store

GrandCentralTerminal Over the weekend, The New York Post reported that Apple has signed a 10-year deal for the north and northeast balconies at Grand Central Terminal (see map below from AppleInsider).  The lease will be worth $800,000 per year —more than a half a million dollars more than previous tenant Metrazur restaurant which, in fairness, occupied a somewhat smaller space. After 10 years, however, the rent will jump to over $1 million a year. Renovation and construction costs will be covered by Apple as well.

To emphasize just how complicated this process is, the deal must still be approved by the MTA's financial committee, which it is expected to do today, and then will have to be finally approved by its Board of Directors which is expected to happen this Wednesday.

The Post is reporting that the space totals 23,000 square feet which is many times the size of Apple's average retail store, and more than double the size of what is currently its largest unit on Fifth Avenue. The new store is also likely to be its most complex and contentious in design. Any changes and additions to the space will have to be approved by the MTA and the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission. The commission is known to be vigilantly protective of Grand Central in particular, as the building's rescue from demolition in 1978 was one of its most famous actions.

While no architectural plans have been released, perhaps the biggest question is how Apple will secure merchandise in what is currently an unenclosed, open-air space with few actual doors to lock when the store is closed? Will it be open during all hours the station is open, or will Apple be allowed to build some sort of enclosure on the balconies? The company is notoriously tight-lipped about such decisions, but the MTA's and Landmark Preservation Commission's public processes will require more disclosure.

So far, projected opening dates have been announced, but we are guessing that the store is about a year off at least —at which point we will be able to see how much more traffic Apple will draw to an already busy destination.

Apple's 'Grand' opening (NYPost)
Apple signs 10 year deal for massive Grand Central Terminal retail store (AppleInsider)


Mad Men, Cynthia Vincent, M Missoni, John Hardy, Stella McCartney, Gorjana, Frette, UGG, Valentino, All Saints, Kevyn Aucoin, Demeyere

Here is your weekly sampling of some of the brands you can expect to find on the bigger online Flash Sale Sites this week. You should click over to the sites themselves for a full schedule of events, and be sure to check for the correct start time for each sale. Happy clicking!

Banana Republic Mad Men Collection, Cynthia Vincent Shoes, Peter Som/Derek Lam, Free People, Pour La Victoire, BCBG Max Azria, Doo.Ri, Helmut Lang, Jay Godfrey, Donna Morgan, Matiko, Clu, Davek, Tart —join HERE
Hickey Freeman, Ashbury Sunglasses, BCBG Suiting, DURKL/Supra Sneakers, Strong Boalt, Patrik Ervell, French Connection, Raf Simons, Michael Kors Collection —join HERE
Emma At Home, Gense Flatware, Preservino/Skybar/Vinotemp, R&Y Augousti, Ferguson Coeland, Steuben, D.L. & Co., Missoni, Cuisinart, Coyuchi Bed & Bath, Alex Toys, Juicy Couture Kids, Kite Kids, L'Amour & Angel Shoes, Munster, Rhona Sutton Swimwear, Luna Luna —join HERE
Taryn Rose, Skagen Denmark, Joseph Abboud Home, Zak!, M Missoni, John Hardy, Briggs & Riley, 7 For All Mankind, Stella McCartney Handbags, Frette, Furla, Fratelli Rossetti, Gorjana, Reebok —join HERE
Vineyard Vines, Koret, Adrienne Vittadini, Marika, Kensie Girl, Linen Love, Meliss & Doug, MICHAEL Michael Kors, Yochi Designs, BCBGeneration, Andrew Marc —join HERE
EcoAccents, Barreveld, Lemon Tree Stationery, Old Hickory Tannery Furniture, Berezan Rugs, Meyer Antiques, Clos-ette, John Robshaw, Sarreid Furniture, nuLOOM, Peacock Alley, Demeyere, Dedon, Saint Parfum  —join HERE
UGG, Da-Nang, Valentino Tailored Clothing, All Saints, London Fog, Donald J. Pliner, Kevyn Aucoin, Joe's Jeans, Invicta, Monarchy, Ben Sherman —join HERE


It Looks Like Apple Will Open A Store In Grand Central After All

After much back and forth earlier this year, it looked like Apple would not be opening its heavily rumored Grand Central Terminal store due to the MTA's strict rules and guidelines for landmark location. However, an article in yesterday's New York Times, which mostly focused on the location's brutal leasing policies, mentioned that the computer giant had reconsidered and was close to an agreement to put a store on the main hall's east and north balconies. MTA approval is expected early next week, and construction should begin quickly as Metrazur, the restaurant that had occupied the east balcony, has cleared out.

The article also shed light on the MTA's demanding leasing policies, including the rule that longtime tenants reapply for their store spaces each time their leases come up rather than being granted a first option for renewal. This has often left what anyone else might consider solid tenants out in the cold, and explains, for example, why the much loved Little Pie Company was forced out of the downstairs concourse last year in favor of the richer but less interesting Magnolia Bakery.

As for the Apple Store, the company has a habit not announcing new stores until they are only a few weeks from opening, but the MTA is forced to be more public. We should know the final disposition of the proposed store by next week.

As Grand Central Changes, Longtime Tenants Are Left Behind by Christine Haughney (NYTimes)
Apple Out Of Grand Central? (03.18.11)


Project Favorites Part II:

This week, The Men's Spring 2012 trade shows happened. The Shophound made it to (capsule) and Project before we succumbed to sensory overload. While an exhaustive review of the shows would be, well, exhausting, we'll be posting what caught our eye from our favorite designers throughout the week.

The most interesting labels at Project were often the newest, so it's not surprising that the only-a-few-months-old Brooklyn Bootworks caught our attention. Inspired by a pair of 35-year-old boots that one of the brand's owners still wears, the line came about in an effort to produce the best boots possible. Founding duo Jess Draper and Mike Chamberas discovered that as much as they wanted to manufacture their boots in their home borough, Brooklyn's manufacturing capabilities are now too limited to allow them to produce the kind of product they wanted. Rather than looking to China or South America, however, they turned to Italy for production so they could ensure the best possible quality. Seeing the finished product, you can't dispute their decision. They have smartly kept their debut line simple and classic incorporating top quality Italian cordovan leathers. Taking all that into consideration, the prices, falling in the $400 to $600 range are still lower than we would have expected, and these boots look like they could easily last for 35 years themselves.

Brooklyn Bootworks (Official Site)