NYC Stores Can Reopen on Monday. Many of Its Biggest Won’t
(Bloomberg) -- New York City’s non-essential shops -- from clothiers to toy stores -- will soon be allowed to offer limited services to cabin-fevered shoppers after months on lockdown. But some of the city’s biggest stores won’t be participating.
A number of major retailers say they aren’t opening for curbside pickup on June 8, the date Andrew Cuomo set for the first phase of recovery for the epicenter of the coronavirus outbreak in the U.S.
Coach, Kate Spade and Stuart Weitzman will not be opening any of their New York fashion boutiques on Monday, according to a representative for parent Tapestry Inc. The luxury company has been reopening hundreds of stores across North America, Europe and Asia in recent weeks, with about half its store network in the U.S. and Canada providing curbside services, but is holding out longer in New York City.
Make-up purveyor Ulta Beauty Inc. is being cautious too, with no timeline yet for its city stores to reopen as New York remains a lofty hurdle for an industry that’s known for providing high-touch services to try out products. As of Thursday, only seven of Ulta’s 51 stores in New York state are open for curbside pickup, all of which are located in suburbs.
Retailers are wrestling with reopening for pickup as they try to determine whether it would be both safe and profitable. Curbside assistance is different in cities than suburban shopping centers and strip malls, with urban consumers reliant on public transport. Though pickup is sure to lift sales with nearby shoppers, it would need to drive enough business to make the costs worth it.
On top of that, some Manhattan shops have been damaged in looting, and storefronts on shopping thoroughfares like Fifth Avenue, Broadway and Madison Avenue have been boarded up with plywood to deter damage.
Tiffany & Co., which operates a major flagship off Fifth Avenue, has set a tentative reopening date for June 11, the company said. The jewelry store, in a temporary location next door while the main shop is under renovation, was boarded up this week amid protests.
Macy’s Inc., one of the world’s largest department stores, began talks with New York Mayor Bill de Blasio’s office in May about reopening. It hasn’t laid out a public plan yet for opening its Herald Square flagship, which was targeted by looters earlier this week.
When it comes to curbside pickup in New York City, “the plan is to participate,” Macy’s spokesperson Blair Rosenberg said, “but as you know we’re taking things day by day.”
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