By Faith Hope Consolo, chairman,
The Retail Group,
Prudential Douglas Elliman
We’re just days away from Memorial Day, and I can smell the ocean air now! But there’s still a lot of retail activity to report in the city and nationally.
The Easter shift affected sales in April, with the International Council of Shopping Centers Chain Store Sales rising just 0.6 percent on a year-over-year basis.
Unusually warm March temperatures also moved a significant amount of spring shopping into the month before, as well.
However, if March and April are measured together, ICSC notes, sales rose a quite respectable 2.4 percent. Luxury stores had the strongest numbers in April, rising 5.8 percent, with apparel shops increasing 2.2 percent. Wholesale clubs rose 4.0 percent.
I expect sales to stay strong through the summer. The Consumer Confidence Index remained fairly flat from March to April, as shoppers moderated their outlook in the short term, but remain positive for the long haul.
And as I write this, ICSC’s annual RECon show is just days away — look for a full report next month!
Leasing in New York City remains strong. Universal Gear is opening at 715 Ninth Avenue momentarily. Herman Miller’s pop-up shop at 68 Wooster Street features modern and contemporary furniture. Not far away, Piperlime’s first permanent store ever will open at 121 Wooster.
DSW has taken the Filene’s Basement space at Broadway and 79th Street. Pookie & Sebastian’s next location will be at 794 Lexington Avenue. Tumi has debuted at 125 Fifth Avenue. Pier 1 Imports is taking multiple levels at 1110 Third Avenue.
Century 21 has finally confirmed a store at the Fulton Street Mall in Brooklyn. JC Penney has leased 11,500 s/f at 200 Lafayette Street, for a format that remains to be seen. Portia & Manny’s vintage goods have relocated to 198 Elizabeth Street.
In extreme long-term planning, Havaianas will open a store in the city in 2013. Maison Martin Margiela’s MM6 Line will open at 363 Bleecker Street.
Ippolita will arrive at 796 Madison. IW Schaffhausen has come to 535 Madison. Swarovski will brighten the Roosevelt Hotel, 365 Madison Avenue.
I’m looking forward to one of the most rewarding programs my friends and colleagues at NYCREW sponsor each year: Its CREW Careers: Building Opportunities program, to be held June 7 from 9:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
The program will benefit Girls Quest, a not-for-profit organization that provides out-of-school enrichment programs for teenagers in the New York City metro area and the Catskills.
During the day, some 30 young women will learn about real estate as a possible career from some of the outstanding leaders of the New York chapter of Commercial Real Estate Women’ Network, and program sponsors Extell Development and Crowell & Moring. This day is always special – a chance to help create the next generation of real estate. For more information, visit www.nycrew.org.
Despite the summer slowdown, there still are opportunities to share information. I’ll be a panelist discussing “New York: The Economy and Our Market” at the Real Estate Board of New York Residential Membership Committee’s Annual Owner/Manager Luncheon on Tuesday, June 14 from 11:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. at the New York Athletic Club, 180 Central Park South.
Adam Rose, co-president of Rose Associates, and Hal Fetner, co-president of Durst-Fetner Residential also are on the panel, while Greg David, a columnist and former editor and editorial director of Crain’s New York, will moderate.
For more information, visit www.REBNY.com.