Barneys New York CoOp will close its Phipps Plaza store June 8th. The store opened in early 2005 in place of Abercrombie & Fitch (which relocated to the former F.A.O. Schwarz at Lenox Square.) The store opening followed encouraging sales growth for the storied chain duringmuch of late 2004. In the time since, the chain has changed ownership multiple times, most recently earlier this week when Ron Burkle and Perry Capital purchased the brand in a debt re-structuring deal. Istithmar World, the investment arm of the Dubai government, purchased the retailer in 2007 for nearly $1 billion, and will retain a minority interest in the business.
At one point, there was talk of a full line Barneys coming to Atlanta, a store that many wanted in theory, but I doubt many would support with their pocketbooks. For that matter, Atlanta is often compared to Dallas, and on a recent trip to Dallas, I was amazed to find a full-line Barneys store in NorthPark Center all but abandoned on an otherwise busy Saturday afternoon.
Tory Burch will expand her boutique, taking over an undisclosed amount of the current Barney's space. I've had Barneys on my DeathWatch for months, and as I said in late February, Barney's needed to have another party interested in their space in order for them to be able to vacate. Given that Burch is only taking a portion of the space, there would seem to be another retailer in line for the remaining portion.
Over the past few months, there have been many changes at Phipps including the closure of Brookstone making way for Lilly Pulitzer later this month, and the unfortunate short-lived Latitude restaurant, which lasted only about four months. Additionally, as many will recall, Legoland Discovery Center opened just their third domestic location on the third floor of Phipps Plaza, and New Zealand-based Rebecca Taylor will open just her sixth U.S. location at Phipps Plaza later this year.
As of now I'm told the store will simply close June 8th and there will be no liquidation sale as inventory is being sent to other locations.