Dallas, texas-based Neiman Marcus is bringing its latest retail concept to metro Atlanta. Dubbed Last Call Studio, the store features clothing and accessories that have never been in a full-line Neiman Marcus, and is instead purchased specifically for sale in the Studio stores. The Studio stores are not to be confused with (although I'm sure many do) Neiman Marcus Last Call, which features plenty of merchandise from full line Neiman Marcus stores, but at reduced prices.
Neiman Marcus Last Call Studio was launched in 2010 with stores in Rockville, Maryland and Paramus, New Jersey. I visited the Paramus store a couple of years ago and was largely disappointed in the offerings. Neiman's called on their existing vendors to create what amounts to "made for outlet" merchandise to be sold in the Studio stores.
While this store would seem to be a faux outlet of sorts as consumers are not exactly getting what they think they are, nothing compares to the trickery I saw at Saks OFF 5TH.
According to the Neiman Marcus website, there are currently seven "Studio" stores in the country, mostly in city centers and shopping centers, versus traditional outlet centers. One was reportedly in the works at Atlantic Station but the deal fell apart. By comparison, there are over 30 Last Call Outlet stores across the country.
The Studio store in Buckhead will be located at Lenox Marketplace on the second level, in a portion of the former Filene's Basement. The 14,000+ square foot space will occupy just under two thirds of Filene's first level, leaving about 7700 square feet for what could be another retailer. The upper level of the Filene's Basement space is becoming Pirch (formerly Fixtures Living).
When Sembler opened Lenox Marketplace in 1999, the Pirch, Last Call Studio and current LA Fitness spaces were to be an Uptons department store, but the entire Roswell-based chain was closed before the store was built out. Upstart home store dekor, started by a roster of former The Home Depot employees, opened in the space instead, but after a short nine month existence in 2001, the entire chain closed.
Today Lenox Marketplace is owned and managed by EDENS and is home to a three-level Dick's Sporting Goods, two-level Target, Publix, Staples and a few smaller tenants.
Neiman Marcus operates one full line store in Atlanta at Lenox Square, and one Last Call Outlet, at Sugarloaf Mills in Duluth.
New York-based Sak's Fifth Avenue operates three OFF 5TH locations in metro Atlanta (Duluth, Dawsonville and Woodstock) and one full line store at Phipps Plaza in Buckhead.
Seattle-based Nordstrom operates four Nordstrom rack locations in metro Atlanta (Perimeter, Mall of Georgia, Alpharetta and Buckhead) and three full line stores in Phipps Plaza, Perimeter Mall and Mall of Georgia.
New York-based Bloomingdale's operates zero outlet stores in metro Atlanta and one full line store at Lenox Square.