Monday, May 18, 2020

[ALERT] Nordstrom to Shutter Atlanta Born Luxury Boutique

Nordstrom announced earlier today that is has permanently closed its three Jeffrey specialty stores as it continues to adjust to the fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic.  Women's Wear Daily (WWD) first reported the news which affects the company's original store at Phipps Plaza in Buckhead, as well as sibling shops in New York's Meatpacking District and in Palo Alto, California at Stanford Shopping Center.  The closures come just days after the company revealed that it planned to close 16 full-line department stores in eight states plus one in Puerto Rico.  Following the closures the company will operates 100 full-line department stores including two in Atlanta: Phipps Plaza in Buckhead and Perimeter Mall in Dunwoody.  
Jeffrey was one of several boutiques which added street signage during Phipps Plaza's 2016 renovation 

"Jeffrey developed a more comprehensive designer offering across all categories — shoes, handbags, accessories and ready-to-wear for men and women. He helped us secure new distribution,” Pete Nordstrom said in an interview with WWD. “He leaned in with buying teams to help us improve our edit and selection. His presence in the market alongside our buying teams helped validate our place as a designer destination.…There’s always been a tremendous synergy between Nordstrom, Jeffrey Kalinsky and his successful luxury specialty stores,” he continued.

For his part, Kalinsky said, “Nordstrom has been an incredible partner to me and to the Jeffrey brand. While I’m disappointed in their decision to close Jeffrey stores, I understand it is the right decision for the business given the circumstances of this global crisis. 

Following the winding down of operations, Kalinsky plans to retire from Nordstrom.  

Jeffrey Kalinsky opened Jeffrey at Phipps Plaza in 1990, pairing his upscale clothing boutique with Bob Ellis, a luxury shoe business started by his father in Charleston, S.C. and later expanded to Atlanta.  The store immediately found an audience and helped launch the careers of several local retailers, Jim Whitlow of Deka [Society] among them.  Kalinsky expanded the brand to New York in 1999, opening on 14th Street in the Meatpacking District.  

Nordstrom, which opened at Phipps Plaza March 11, 2005, purchased a majority stake in Jeffrey in August of the same year for an undisclosed sum, rumored to be in the $40-50 million range.  Jeffrey brought Nordstrom designer expertise and relationships that the corporate chain wished to develop to further the designer business not only at Jeffrey, but at the full-line Nordstrom stores, too. 
Kalinsky shared news of the closure on his person Instagram

The Palo Alto store opened in August 2018 followed by the debut of a renovated and expanded store - now about 12,000 - at Phipps Plaza later that fall.  The imminent closure of Jeffrey at Phipps Plaza will leave a huge hole in the Saks Fifth Avenue wing where recent additions have included Tom Ford and Dolce & Gabbana.  

Kalinsky has been deeply involved in LGBTQ rights through his Jeffrey Fashion Cares fundraiser and fashion show.  The event, which this past year celebrated its 27th year in Atlanta, was held at Phipps Plaza and due to the COVID-19 pandemic, had already been cancelled for 2020, with the charity's website saying "we look forward to celebrating in 2021."   The charity also put on a New York event.  It's unclear what the future will hold for the events in either city with Nordstrom, who was previously a major sponsor, now out of the picture.  

Simon Property Group, which up until recently was hard at work on a multi-million dollar redevelopment of the former Belk store at Phipps Plaza, now finds itself with another significant space to re-lease or subdivide.  Given its prime location on the first level, adjacent to Saks, the space is sure to command high rent, but there are few options for quality tenants able to pay or in the market to expand.  

Are you surprised that Nordstrom decided to close all three Jeffrey stores?  What would you like to see open in place of Jeffrey at Phipps Plaza?  What is your favorite luxury store?  

Please share your thoughts below.  

5 comments:

Ham said...

Yes, a little sad and another hit for Phipps. I'm sure Simon will find an appropriate tenant like Mattress Wearhouse or a nice Wing place.

Anonymous said...

sad but true. but this is also what happens when you sell your boutique to a giant. look at what starbucks did to teavana.

Cody Cargle said...

Anonymous said on May 23, 2020 at 3:33 Am Honestly Nordstrom’s just needs to be more like Von Maur and go back to what they used to be in general, because even Bloomingdales has been staying relevant thanks to Macy’s! 😁 But yeah in general department stores such as Sears, JCPenney’s, Lord and Taylor that used to exist in Metro Atlanta as well as Florida and other southeast states, and Neiman Marcus are money loosing stores thanks to Amazon, Walmart, Target, Von Maur, and Kohl’s sadly. 😞 Even though Macy’s, Dillard’s, Belks, Saks Fifth Avenue, and Bloomingdales are all struggling thanks to last economic crash and Covid 19, they are staying relevant to there customers because of online shopping and the latest trends in stores as well, because if they didn’t it would end up liked the stores I mentioned, but Sears along with Lord and Taylor will both be long gone from existence soon, if things don’t change now, but it’s unfortunately too late for either one of them in reality, but JCPenney’s and Neiman Marcus could both be easily turned around if they do it the right way, and Nordstrom’s in long term will be fine, but they will have Von Maur and Bloomingdales still gaining on them. 🤔 For three examples: Arbor Place Mall and Phipps Plaza, and Pier Park/Panama City Mall what’s left of it from Hurricane Michael, Arbor Place already lost Sears, if they close JCPenney’s heaven forbid, the mall won’t necessarily go under as long as Macy’s or Dillard’s don’t pull out, it can survive currently like it is, but it would be a lot harder replacing two stores instead of one, now Phipps Plaza on the other hand cannot survive if Nordstrom’s ever did close, because Saks Fifth Avenue may be the reason it stays alive, but it would put the mall further into decline especially with Lenox Square across street thriving happily, but it would be the opposite if Neiman did leave Lenox Square and more than likely it will be Phipps closing for good before Lenox Square, and finally Pier Park where I now currently live fyi to the haters on this blog, if JCPenney’s ever did leave there, Dillard’s and the mall would survive short term because of tourists, but long term when tourist season ends, it would be putting into a decline, so chances it would be bad, and it would sit abandoned until a shopping center replaces it, and then Panama City Mall remnants of Hurricane Michael the mall closed for good, but if JCPenney’s did close there instead of Pier Park, then it’s history because Dillard’s would consolidate with Pier Park afterwhile, so in conclusion department stores better straighten up or they will end up like Sears or Lord and Taylor! 😳

Anonymous said...

do you even read through what you write before hitting the button?

Cody Cargle said...

Anonymous said on May 26, 2020 at 10:49 Am Honestly why does it matter what I write on here do you have a problem? 🤔

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