By Kenny Dieglio
No city does retail like New York City. And Frank Sinatra was right. If you can make it there, you likely can make it anywhere. We don’t think he was talking about retail when he belted the iconic tune, but just go with it. As a major proving ground for success, just about every type of experience sets up shop in NYC, whether the retailer is trying to test a new concept, get some buzz for the holiday season, transition for DTC to physical or inspire some type of rejuvenation.
To kick off the 2020 retail year, we made a brand new start of it by checking out some of the newest, trendiest, impactful stores in New York.
- Neighborhood Goods
- We can’t help but consider the contrasting nature of the new Chelsea 4,500-square-foot Neighborhood Goods space and the immense 188,000-square-foot Neiman Marcus flagship at Hudson Yards. Just Neighborhood Goods second location, the store features 40 brands that will rotate and offers a nimble, well, neighborhood feel. As Neighborhood Goods is just starting out with a healthy financial backing, it provides an experience that seems more sustainable in today’s changing retail world. Time will tell whether the Neiman store makes it, but there’s a reason several other department store flagships have recently closed.
- From one store offering a unique assortment of brands to another, Showfields is the self-proclaimed Most Interesting Store in the World. With its fully experiential approach and focus on art, that claim just might be true. While Neighborhood Goods generates a shopping experience that could likely be replicated in big cities across the country, Showfields feels like a grandiose achievement that happens in New York, London, and Paris.
- At long last we found a toy store that encourages shoppers to test out the toys! Camp doesn’t just want to be a showroom that sells toys. It wants to be alive with activity and be a place where families can spend time together building, baking, and slime-making.
- From Instagram famous to In Real Life acclaim, Glossier has achieved success wherever it goes. In checking out its flagship space in SoHo, we couldn’t help but notice the attention to detail in that the entire space is Insta-influencer worthy. Shoppers can purchase things on the spot or can have them sent directly to their door.
- Starbucks Reserve Roastery
- With all of the stops on our retail tour, we had to take a break for some caffeine. We couldn’t help ourselves when we saw the impressive Starbucks Reserve Roastery. Unlike any Starbucks we’ve ever seen, this coffee dreamland provides signature Reserve beverages as well as a full coffee-inspired cocktail bar. The toughest part is deciding what to try, as the menu offers nitro options as well as barrel-aged coffees you can’t get at your neighborhood location.
Does retail victory in New York guarantee growth when it’s time to scale? Not at all. Brands need the right strategy for replicating success outside of the Big Apple. Maybe even something we call a retail portfolio strategy. Until next time, New York, New Yooooooork.