Anyone who remembers the original Barneys New York store in Chelsea knows that it was actually three buildings. There is the part of the old Men's store that was the "Traditional" side, became Loehmann's and is once again a Barneys store. There was the series of apartment buildings on 17th Street that became the Women's store and is now the Rubin Museum of Art, and then there was the building between them on the corner of 17th and Seventh Avenue which was housed the "International" side of the men's store. Most of that building has also been given over to the Rubin Museum, but, oddly, the street level was never incorporated. While the museum had always covered the windows of this section, recently they have been uncovered, revealing a dusty construction site. A closer look shows that since Barneys was forced to close the Chelsea store, this particular corner has never been turned over to something else. At least for a little while longer, you can see the old store's interior relatively left as it was when it was shuttered. Though it's hard to show in the photo through a dirty window, under the rubble you can see the original floor, shelves and the staircase to the upper floors. Why the sudden activity? The building at 113 Seventh Avenue as well as the rest of the Rubin Museum at 150 West 17th Street have been sold by the Museum and are now on the rental market. We might suggest that an excellent tenant for 113 Seventh Avenue on the corner might be . . . Barney's?
While it might be premature to suggest an expansion of the four-level store that just opened barely two months ago, There are some glaring omissions in the new Barneys where the men's offerings of what was once the most comprehensive men's stores anywhere have been reduced to less than a single floor of designer collections and luxury sneakers. The corner building would give Barneys enough room to add the missing home department as well as flesh out the store's incomplete menswear offerings on the upper floors.
We aren't holding our breath that this is somehow secretly in the works, but shouldn't it be?
Stranger things have been known to happen.
A Fully packed Shopping Week With Oscar de la Renta, Thakoon, Elie Tahari, Ports 1961 & More
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