Amenity Arms Race
Following in the footsteps of The Mark and Extell’s Carlton House, which kicked off their partnerships with Bergdorf Goodman and Barneys last year, Elad has announced that its latest luxury conversion 22 Central Park South will also feature in-home access to personal shoppers and hair stylists from Bergdorf. The upscale department store is literally right around the corner, as a New York Times article on extreme amenities points out. But why go all the way down the street to find your own personal shopper when the concierge can call one 24/7? (The service will prove especially helpful, of course, for those last minute pre-gala emergencies.)
Those who want top-notch customer service at the likes of Bergdorf Goodman may do well to stop by after SoulCycle class. That’s my conclusion after road testing a Harvard Business School study that associated star treatment in luxury retail stores with wearing sweats.
Since 1995, Frederic Fekkai hair-care products—PrX Reparatives Shampoo: 16 oz. for $49; Ageless Overnight Hair Repair: 3.4 oz for $195—have graced the glass shelves of custom-tiled Upper East Side steam showers. Mr. Fekkai, the eponymous brand’s founder, also got his New York start in that neighborhood, when in 1989, Bergdorf Goodman invited him to open an on-site salon in their Fifth Avenue flagship. (Mr. Fekkai is now the proprietor of the world’s largest salon, the Frederic Fekkai salon, also on Fifth Avenue.)
But has the French-born stylist’s romance with the area gone sour? Well, according to city records, Mr. Fekkai has just sold his three-bedroom co-op at 829 Park Avenue for just under $3 million. For the sake of the Real Housewives, we hope he does not plan to go far.
Deluxe Gifts for Me! Me! Me!
The Waldorf-Astoria Hotel is currently cultivating a new kind of honey for its kitchens and bars. The hotel, where President Obama stays when he is in town, is used to painstaking attention to detail and extravagance, which makes its approach to the honey all the more intriguing.
Rather than relying on what could be called the Masa Imperative of luxury, after the top-dollar sushi joint that ships in fish from the Sea of Japan and the Bay of Spain with the urgency and costliness of helicoptered transplant organs (indeed, some of the fish are carried in organ containers), the Waldorf has gone in a direction more evocative of the Brooklyn Flea Market: its honey comes from beehives it is now keeping on a 20th-floor outdoor patio.
The initiative, brainchild of executive chef David Garcelon, relies on the expertise of the city’s premier beekeeper, Andrew Coté, who sells his own neighborhood-specific honeys at the Union Square farmer’s market.
Fashion Week Spring 2013
Screw gift-giving to others. This season should be all about you! Treat yourself to something extraordinary that, naturally, you’d never consider budgeting for to give to anyone else. Don’t dwell on the stigma of selfishness–you deserve a reward! Sixty-hour work weeks with dreadful colleagues that collide headfirst into a binge of holiday family time; menacing Read More
Fashion Week Observed
“I hope I have a job tomorrow.” That was personal shopper Betty Halbreich’s reaction to the Sept. 12 preview of Matthew Miele’s fashion documentary Scatter My Ashes at Bergdorf’s. Ms. Halbreich explained, “I spurt things without thinking!” But to others, her brutal honesty and WASPish sense of humor made her one of the film’s firm favorites. Gossip Girl costume designer Eric Damon spoke for all when he said, “It’s all about Betty.”
Ms. Halbreich, The Observer thinks you’ll be just fine.
As Fashion Week comes to a close, the celebration of Bergdorf Goodman’s 111th anniversary stepped into the spotlight. Swapping Lincoln Center’s front rows for the old-style stadium seating of The Paris Theater, a confluence of fatigued fashionistas enjoyed a show that for the first time in seven days allowed them to remain in their seats for more than 10 minutes.
“If you can keep the evening stuff to a dull roar that would great! There are just so many events,” gripped Bergdorf Goodman’s Linda Fargo to a publicist at Naeem Khan’s Valentine’s Day show. [sigh] The fashion week life!
We’re content to note that she had little reason to complain after Mr. Khan presented his Read More
Eastern Consolidated has promoted Lipa Lieberman and Aliza Avital, both former directors turned senior directors whom the firm’s president, Daun Paris, described in a press release last week as talented dealmakers and rising stars at the company.
It’s the great white whale of Manhattan retail.
Aside from Walmart, Nordstrom is the store every retail broker in the city dreams of harpooning and reeling into a new home. One prominent broker familiar with the store, the amount of space it needs and the rents it would probably be willing to pay estimates that the commission for handling its lease would be around $10 million.
But like a leviathan lurking beneath the waves, the department store has offered only fleeting glimpses around the city, most notably at several development sites and a few existing assets with the capacity to accommodate its sprawling footprint.
The scuttlebutt nowadays: Nordstrom is contemplating one of two leases, one at the West Side rail yards with the Related Companies or another at the base of Extell Development’s soaring new residential tower now rising at 157 West 57th Street.
Gap has a disappointing new logo and that logo has its own Twitter account. [Twitter]
Stacey Bendet-Eisner, alice + olivia designer and wife of film producer Eric Eisner, is pregnant with her second child. [Page Six]
There is a giant leather cheeseburger displayed in the Fifth Avenue window of Read More