At long last, luxury retailer Neiman Marcus will open its first store in the mecca of shopping: New York City.
The luxury department store will open a 250,000-square-foot location in Hudson Yards, in a new retail complex being developed by Related Companies on the west side of Manhattan. The store is scheduled to open in 2018.
Neiman's decision to plunge into the most competitive U.S. luxury retail market comes at the ripe old age of 107. Until now, the Dallas-based company had been wary of entering an already crowded New York market and cannibalizing the sales of its sister store, Bergdorf Goodman.
But with luxury sales exploding in New York, the company decided it was finally the right time. Neiman CEO Karen Katz in a statement spoke of the importance of a flagship "in one of the world's premier shopping destinations."
Neiman will be entering New York at a time rival luxury retailers are falling over themselves to take advantage of the tourism boom in New York, fueled by an influx of well-heeled visitors from Brazil, China and Russia. A number of retailers are tidying up or expanding in an effort to cash in on the sales bonanza.
Nordstrom (jwn) will also open its first Manhattan department store in 2018. Saks Fifth Avenue is spending $1 billion on upgrading its fleet of stores, the bulk of which is going to spruce up it Manhattan flagship. Macy's (m) is in the midst of a multi-year, $400 million overhaul of its flagship, which includes boutiques for luxury brands such as Louis Vuitton and Longchamp. And Bergdorf Goodman is about to undertake a five-year renovation.
While New York has always been a luxury hub and home to a lot of wealthy, local customers, tourism has skyrocketed, and sent luxury revenues through the roof. Spending by tourists rose 30.9% to $36.9 billion between 2009 and 2012. Last week, Tiffany & Co (tif) credited foreign tourism for the big sales gains at its Fifth Avenue flagship last quarter.
Neiman Marcus already has several stores in the New York area, including one in Paramus, New Jersey, another in White Plains, New York and plans for another in Long Island, New York. The Manhattan store will be Neiman's forty-third full service department store.
Also on Wednesday, the retailer said it would open a store in its outlet chain - Last Call Studio - in Brooklyn.