Step off the street and into the fashion world at these designer stores
The city that never sleeps seemingly never stops shopping, either. But so many options often make it difficult to choose where to go and what to try on. These four designers, though, ease the process by having stores that make shoppers feel like they’re stepping off the street and into the pages of a magazine, and who doesn’t want that?
One of the most long-reigning queens of New York fashion – and fittingly from Queens – Donna Karan has defined the way that women dress not just in the Big Apple but around the world. Her flagship on Madison Avenue fully gives testament to the kind of atmospheric style she’s created. The three stories are centered around a bamboo garden, and stone, tall mirrors and a fountain continue the feng shui throughout. It’s worth being immersed in: walking into Donna-land and feeling what living the simple-beauty lifestyle her brand touts feels like. In addition to all of her garments and accessories for men and women, there are vases, candles, vintage furnishings as well as an organic café and book area. (Madison Ave. nr. 69th St.)
A Brooklyn-native, Kenneth Cole has similarly been in touch with what Manhattanites want, need, and how the two intersect – a rare combination of form and function that has kept Cole desired by the masses since he sold an astounding 400,000 pairs of shoes during his company’s first three and a half days in business. Sure, online shoe shopping is a practiced talent by many, but there’s nothing quite like slipping on a leather loafer to find yourself walking on air in person. More extensive selections of his men’s clothing lives at his SoHo location (Broadway nr. Houston St.); more women’s uptown (57th St. at Lexington Ave.); a combination of the two in Grand Central. Cole has also had a second career in philanthropy, and the writing is literally on the walls at his stores, which are often transformed into murals educating customers on certain causes such as AIDS awareness and the importance of voting while they rifle through soft wallets or slip on a crocodile belt for size.
Yet another New Yorker through and through, Michael Kors hails from Long Island, whose upper-crust jet set has influenced his designs ever since. In 2013, Time magazine named Kors as one of the 100 most influential people in the world, and when walking into his two-story flagship on Madison Avenue, it’s clear why. Kors-land is a seductive heaven of sorts that preaches a clean and polished American dream where leisure is practiced just as much as hard work. White leather, stainless steel and 22-foot-high ceilings house his oversized sunglasses, chunky watches, leather goods and ready-to-wear collections. That is, until his three-story space in SoHo opens, giving his luxury goods a new lap-of-luxury in which to sit pretty in the city. (Madison Ave. nr. 61st St.)
Hugo Boss may not be a New Yorker, but he certainly knows how to dress them. His German luxury fashion house opened a three-story home last fall in Columbus Circle at an event so anticipated that even then-mayor Bloomberg video-conference-called in to attend. As the brand’s largest store in the Americas, Boss’ full collection of goods resides here, waiting to help style-conscious men look even more so. From sportswear to bohemian-patterned shirts to luxurious leather goods, the range of products here must be seen to be believed. And then, of course, there are the suits: in every style imaginable, it’s impossible to not find one that makes you look a cut above the rest, literally. (The Shops at Columbus Circle)