|Typical interior of a C. Wonder retail store|
C. Wonder will soon close its remaining twelve retail locations as it winds down operations. Word got out in November the chain would be closing most of their stores to "transition into a wholesale brand," but apparently that plan failed to materialize, and the chain will instead discontinue operations entirely. Locally, C. Wonder locations in Lenox Square and an outlet at the Outlet Shoppes at Atlanta in Woodstock have already closed. Today, a location that had been open at Avalon in Alpharetta for about 90 days will also close.
A C. Wonder spokesperson furnished the following statement regarding the closure:
"Due to the highly competetive nature of the current retail environment, C. Wonder will be closing its remaining retail stores. The Company continues to evaluate its best alternative to maintain the C. Wonder experience for its customers."
Twelve locations in malls and lifestyle centers around the country will close while three international locations will reportedly remain open for now. The three international locations, two in Dubai and one in Kuwait, are operated via a partnership and may for now have escaped the company's domestic troubles.
Among the domestic closures are the chain's flagship locations in SoHo and The Shops at Columbus Circle, both in New York. The Mall at Millenia in Orlando also had a C. Wonder store as did Fashion Island in Newport Beach, California, and King Street in Charleston. These suddenly vacant spaces in high profile shopping areas will surely be desirable to brands looking to expand domestically. (Lucy, TopShop and UNIQULO to name a few.)
C. Wonder was launched in 2011 by Chris Burch, serial entreprenuer and ex-husband of style icon Tory Burch. The chain hired employees from the likes of Henri Bendel and Tory Burch and sold a variety of cheaply produced, often monogramed, female oriented clothing, gifts and accessories. Many in the retail industry called the brand "revenge retail," given its similarity to Tory Burch and its targeting of similar customers. I found the chain well merchandised and almost a Lilly Pulitzer / Tory Burch / Henri Bendel mashup.
Did you like C. Wonder? Did you hate C. Wonder? What should replace vacant C. Wonder stores in Atlanta?
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