By Liana Grey
The clothing chain Tommy Bahama will be opening a 13,000 s/f flagship at the Fred French Building on the corner of Fifth Avenue and 45th Street this fall, following over a year and a half of renovations on the space.
Last January, Amira Yunis of CBRE helped the firm secure a 12-year lease for the building’s ground floor, mezzanine and basement space, which will feature a 5,000 s/f storefront as well as an 8,000 s/f restaurant and bar.
Of 90 Tommy Bahama outposts across the country, only 13 offer food and drinks. The retail portion of the flagship, which was formerly occupied by the clothing chain New York Look, will carry a collection of sportswear, swimwear, accessories and home décor.
“Tommy Bahama’s lifestyle concept will bring the corner of Fifth Avenue and 45th Street to life,” Yunis said in a statement after the lease was signed.
“This transaction further reinforces the national retailers’ desire to open on one of New York City’s best shopping corridors, Fifth Avenue between 42nd Street and Yunis said in a statement after the lease was signed. “This transaction further reinforces the national retailers’ desire to open on one of New York City’s best shopping corridors, Fifth Avenue between 42nd Street and Rockefeller Center.”
Tommy Bahama will join a handful of popular clothing brands that have leased storefronts on Fifth Avenue in the west 40s. Urban Outfitters has a 26,000 s/f shop near 43rd Street, Guess has space on 47th Street, and H&M has an outpost on the corner of 42nd Street.
According to a report released by REBNY this past spring, retail rents on Fifth Avenue between 42nd and 49th Street are rising. The average asking rent for ground-floor space on the corridor is $900 per s/f, up 75 percent from spring of 2011.
REBNY attributes this “both to the lack of space on Upper 5th Avenue, causing a trickledown effect, and the high degree of pedestrian traffic on the avenue,” according to the report.
“We are very excited to welcome Tommy Bahama to our building,” said Brian Feil, vice president of the Feil Organization, the landlord of the 38-story Fred French Building. “This prominent retailer will be a wonderful asset to the area.”
The Feil Organization was represented in-house in the transaction by French Partners, LLC, and New York French Building Co-Investors LLC.