1.4.10

TAKASHIMAYA TO CLOSE FIFTH AVENUE STORE


THE ERA OF THE FAMED ICONIC JAPANESE LUXURY RETAILER TAKASHIMAYA ON MANHATTAN'S FIFTH AVENUE IS COMING TO A CLOSE. THIS JUNE, THE COMPANY WILL SHUTTER ITS NEW YORK FLAGSHIP AT 693 FIFTH AVENUE, BETWEEN 54th AND EAST 55th STREETS. IT HAS BEEN AT THE LOCATION, WHICH IT OWNS AND PLANS TO SELL, SINCE 1993, BUT HAS BEEN ON FIFTH AVENUE SINCE 1958. TAKASHIMAYA CO, WHOSE STUNNING MULTI-LEVEL STORE SELLS EVERYTHING FROM HOME DECOR TO DESIGNER CLOTHES AND JEWELRY TO HAVING A FLORAL BOUTIQUE AND SPA. TRADITIONAL BENTO BOX LUNCHES AND OTHER DELICACIES ARE SERVED AT THE FAMOUS TEABOX RESTAURANT. THE COMPANY WILL NO LONGER BE MERGING WITH H2O RETAILING CORP PARENT COMPANY OF HANKYU AND HANSHIN DEPARTMENT STORES, ACCORDING TO WOMEN'S WEAR DAILY, WHICH FIRST REPORTED THE NEWS. A TAKASHIMAYA SPOKESPERSON MENTIONED THAT SIX ADDITIONAL STORES IN JAPAN HAVE ALREADY BEEN CLOSED. LIKE MANY JAPANESE RETAILERS, THE COMPANY HAS STRUGGLED WITH DECLINING SALES DUE TO THE ECONOMIC DOWNTURN. THE ANNOUNCEMENT LEFT MANY WONDERING ABOUT THE UPCOMING RETAIL VACANCY ON THAT STRETCH OF FIFTH AVENUE, AN UPSCALE STRIP WHERE RENTS ARE THE MOST EXPENSIVE IN THE WORLD, RANGING FROM $1,800 A SQUARE FOOT TO OVER $2,500 A SQUARE FOOT. TAKASHIMAYA CURRENTLY USES MORE THAN 37,000 SQUARE FEET FOR RETAIL AND OFFICE SPACE, WHICH INCLUDES OPERATIONS IN THE BASEMENT, UP THROUGH THE EIGHTH FLOORS. BROKERS SAY THE RETAIL PORTION OF THE SITE HAS BEEN ON THE MARKET SINCE OCTOBER. THE GROUND FLOOR IS ABOUT 3,000 SQUARE FEET, AND INDUSTRY INSIDERS EXPECT THE NEW TENANT TO TAKE AT LEAST THE FIRST THREE FLOORS FOR RETAIL, WHICH WOULD INCLUDE ABOUT 12,000 SQUARE FEET.

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