Fodor's New York City 2016 - Fodor's (2015)
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Updated by Christina Valhouli
The Big Apple is one of the best shopping destinations in the world, rivaled perhaps only by London, Paris, and Tokyo. Its compact size, convenient subway system, and plentiful cabs (or Uber or Lyft rides) make it easy to navigate with plenty of bags in tow. But what it really comes down to is the staggering number and variety of stores. If you can’t find it in New York, it probably doesn’t exist.
If you like elegant flagships and money is no object, head to Midtown, where you find international megabrands like Louis Vuitton, Yves Saint Laurent, and Gucci, as well as famed department stores Bergdorf Goodman and Barneys. Nearby Madison Avenue has couture from Carolina Herrera and Vera Wang, and 5th Avenue is lined with famous jewelry stores like Tiffany, Van Cleef & Arpels, and Harry Winston. This is also the neighborhood to indulge in bespoke goods, such as handmade shoes from John Lobb. If you like designer pieces but can’t afford them, don’t despair—there are plenty of upscale consignment shops around the city where you can find last season’s Chanel suit or a vintage YSL jacket.
The small, independent shops that once lined SoHo have largely been swallowed up by J. Crew and UNIQLO, but if you want to hit the chains, this is a great place to do it, because SoHo also provides high-quality people-watching and superb lunches. If craving some of old SoHo’s artistic spirit, don’t discount the street vendors’ stalls, which sell handmade jewelry and simple cotton dresses. You never know—you might buy something from a soon-to-be-famous designer.
The East Village and Lower East Side are hotbeds of creativity and quirky coolness, with little boutiques selling everything from retro furniture to industrial-inspired jewelry, tucked among bars and tenement apartments. The Meatpacking District is another great shopping destination to find chic stores like Diane Von Furstenberg and Catherine Malandrino along with independently owned boutiques.
New York Shopping Deals
Everyone loves a bargain—including a temporary New Yorker. Scoring a good deal is a rite of passage, and the city is home to everything from low-cost department stores like Century 21 to hawkers of pseudo-Rolex watches and Kate Spade bags stationed at street corners and Canal Street stalls. Then there are the sample sales.
If a seasonal sale makes New Yorkers’ eyes gleam, a sample sale throws them into a frenzy. With so many designer flagships and corporate headquarters in town, merchandise fallout periodically leads to tremendous deals. Although technically the term “sample sale” refers to stock that’s a sample design, show model, leftover, or already discounted item, the term is now also used for sales of current-season goods. Location adds a bit of an illicit thrill to the event: sales are held in hotels, warehouses, offices, or loft spaces, where items both incredible and unfortunate jam a motley assortment of racks, tables, and bins. Generally, there is a makeshift communal dressing room, but mirrors are scarce, so veteran sample-sale shoppers come prepared for wriggling in the aisles; some wear tank tops with tights or leggings for modest quick changes. Two rules of thumb: grab first and inspect later, and call in advance to find out what methods of payment are accepted. One of the ultimate experiences is the Barneys Warehouse Sale, held in February and August in Chelsea. Other luscious sales include the Vera Wang bridal-gown sale (early winter) and Dwell Studio (spring and late fall).
How to find out about these events? The level of publicity and regularity of sales vary. The print and online versions of New York magazine are always worth checking for sample sale tip-offs, as are regular bulletins on Racked (www.racked.com). If interested in specific designers, call their shops and inquire—you may get lucky.
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Lower Manhattan | SoHo and NoLIta | East Village and Lower East Side | Greenwich Village and West Village | Chelsea and the Meatpacking District | Union Square and the Flatiron District | Midtown East | Midtown West | The Upper East Side | The Upper West Side
Known primarily as the home of Wall Street, the Financial District isn’t the best place for browsing.
Fodor’s Choice | Century 21.
For many New Yorkers this downtown fixture remains the mother lode of discount shopping. Four floors are crammed with everything from Marc Jacobs shoes and half-price cashmere sweaters to Donna Karan sheets, though you have to sift through racks and fight crowds to find the gems. Best bets for men are shoes and designer briefs; the full floor of designer women’s wear can yield some dazzling finds. Don’t miss the children’s section either, for brands like Ralph Lauren and Ed Hardy. | 22 Cortlandt St., between Broadway and Church St., Lower Manhattan | 212/227–9092 | www.c21stores.com | Station: R to Cortlandt St.
Gifts and Souvenirs
The official store of NYC sells anything and everything having to do with the city, from books and pamphlets to fun gifts. Pick up NYPD T-shirts, taxicab medallions, garbage truck toys, and dish towels silkscreened with the skyline. The store shuts at 5 pm weekdays and is closed weekends. | 1 Centre St., at Chambers St., Financial District | 212/386–0007 | http://a856-citystore.nyc.gov/ | Station: 4, 5, 6 to Brooklyn Bridge–City Hall.
Known for its multimillion-dollar lofts and celebrity residents, TriBeCa is home to some of the most interesting boutiques in the city, most of them seemed geared toward deep pockets, especially the design and clothing stores. Specialty shops such as Korin or J. Crew Men’s Shop at the Liquor Store are worth a visit.
Stylish children’s shoes and accessories imported from all over the world are the name of the game here. Choose from ballet flats, trendy sneakers, and motorcycle boots along with pom-pom hats, brightly patterned socks, eclectic toys, and jewelry. | 42 Hudson St., between Thomas and Duane sts., TriBeCa | 212/406–3270 | www.shooflynyc.com | Station: 1 to Franklin St.
Fodor’s Choice | Issey Miyake.
This flagship, designed by Frank Gehry, attracts a nonfashion crowd who come just to gawk at his undulating, 25-foot-high titanium sculpture, The Tornado. Miyake’s signature style has clothes that are sleek and slim-fitting, and made from polyester or ultrahigh-tech textiles. This flagship carries the entire runway collection, as well as Pleats Please and Issey Miyake Fete. | 119 Hudson St., at N. Moore St., TriBeCa | 212/226–0100 | www.tribecaisseymiyake.com | Station: 1 to Franklin St.
This Israeli-born designer worked for Ralph Lauren and Nautica before launching her own collection for women. Nili Lotan is known for her knitwear, drapey coats, and love of solid colors. Her white-washed retail space also sells rare books. | 188 Duane St., between Greenwich and Hudson sts., TriBeCa | 212/431–7713 | www.nililotan.com | Station: 1, 2, 3 to Chambers St.
Steven Alan Annex.
This TriBeCa flagship sells casual cool sportswear. Steven Alan is the place to come if your preferred uniform is a cashmere beanie, untucked plaid shirt, and skinny jeans. The rustic space stocks clothing for men and women and sells its own line of clothing, as well as beauty products and home accessories. | 103 Franklin St., TriBeCa | 212/343–0692 | www.stevenalan.com | Station: 1 to Franklin St.
J. Crew Men’s Shop at the Liquor Store.
It would be easy to walk right past this place and think it’s a bar rather than an outpost of J. Crew for men, because it’s filled with manly knickknacks like old Jack Kerouac books and vintage photographs. Some of the best finds are the limited-edition suits and cashmere sweaters, as well as non–J. Crew items like Barbour jackets and Ray-Bans. | 235 West Broadway, at White St., TriBeCa | 212/226–5476 | www.jcrew.com | Station: 1 to Franklin St.
If you’re serious about cooking, head to this specialty knife store in TriBeCa. Previously only open to the trade, it is one of the best places to shop for top-quality knives imported from Japan. | 57 Warren St., between West Broadway and Church St., TriBeCa | 212/587–7021 | www.korin.com | Station: 1, 2, 3 to Chambers St.
Shoes, Handbags, and Leather Goods
Thankfully, the footwear at designer Matt Bernson’s new TriBeCa store is both beautiful and blister-proof. Though the native New Yorker’s comfy, affordable sandals are staples at Bloomingdale’s and Piperlime in SoHo, this shop is his first standalone venture. His shop also stocks accessories such as jewelry and handbags. Don’t miss the designer’s dog, Abraham, who accompanies him to work every day. | 20 Harrison St., between Greenwich and Staple sts., TriBeCa | 212/941–7634 | www.mattbernson.com | Station: 1 to Franklin St.
Fodor’s Choice | Shinola.
This World War II–era shoe polish brand, proudly based in Detroit, has been relaunched as a company that builds handcrafted watches, bicycles, leather goods, journals, and pet accessories. Shinola’s TriBeCa flagship store also sells American-made products from other brands, such as Filson. | 177 Franklin St., between Greenwich and Hudson sts., TriBeCa | 917/728–3000 | www.shinola.com | Station: 1 to Franklin St.
NYC Street Vendor Shopping
If you’re looking for original or reproduced artwork, the two areas to visit for street vendors are the stretch of 5th Avenue in front of the Metropolitan Museum of Art (roughly between 81st and 82nd streets) and the SoHo area of West Broadway, between Houston and Broome streets. In both areas are dozens of artists selling original paintings, drawings, and photographs (some lovely, some lurid), as well as photo reproductions of famous New York scenes (the Chrysler Building, South Street Seaport). Prices can start as low as $15, but be sure to haggle.
The east–west streets in SoHo are an excellent place to look for handmade crafts: Spring and Prince streets, especially, are jammed with tables full of beaded jewelry, tooled leather belts, cotton sundresses, and homemade hats and purses. These streets are also great places to find deals on art books; several vendors have titles featuring the work of artists from Diego Rivera to Annie Leibovitz, all for about 20% less than you pay at a chain. It’s best to know which books you want ahead of time, though; street vendors wrap theirs in clear plastic, and can get testy if you unwrap them but don’t wind up buying.
Faux-designer handbags, sunglasses, wallets, and watches are some of the most popular street buys in town—but crackdowns on knockoffs have made them harder to find. The hub used to be Canal Street, roughly between Greene and Lafayette streets, but many vendors there have swept their booths clean of fake Vuitton, Prada, Gucci, and Fendi merchandise. You might have better luck finding a “Faux-lex” near Herald Square or Madison Square Garden, and good fake handbags are still sold by isolated vendors around such shopping areas as Rockefeller Center and the lower stretch of 5th Avenue, near Union Square. If looking forbargain luggage, skip Canal Street, as the bags there might not last beyond the flight home, and instead pick up a bargain at Marshalls, TJ Maxx, or Century 21.
SOHO AND NOLITA
Head to SoHo for both the cheap and the hyperchic. The narrow sidewalks get very busy, especially on weekends, but this is a fun “seeandbeseen” neighborhood. There are plenty of familiar high-fashion names like Prada, Chanel, and Louis Vuitton,as well as several less expensive chains, like Banana Republic and Sephora, which have made land-grabs on Broadway. But you can still hit a few clothing and housewares boutiques not found elsewhere in this country. The hottest shopping area runs west from Broadway over to 6th Avenue, between West Houston and Grand streets. Don’t overlook a couple of streets east of Broadway, too: Crosby and Lafayette have several intriguing shops.
If the selection of grooming products at Duane Reade doesn’t cut it for you, head to MiN. This wood-paneled shop is decidedly male-friendly, with leather couches and exposed brick walls. Shop for unusual scents from Santa Maria Novella and L’Artisan Parfumeur, shaving products from Old Bond Street, or quirky items like mustache wax. | 117 Crosby St., between Prince and Houston sts., SoHo | 212/206–6366 | minnewyork.com | Station: N, R to Prince St.
Fodor’s Choice | Birchbox.
Cult favorite beauty subscription service Birchbox now has a retail space. Visitors to its SoHo store can stock up on best-selling products here, which range from $5-–$200 and include everything from lip balm and stylish mugs to curling irons, headphones, and fragrance. There’s also a BYOB (Build Your Own Birchbox) section, where users create their own box full of samples. The store also has a separate floor set aside for makeup, hair, and nail services. | 433 West Broadway, between Spring and Prince sts., | 646/589–8500 | www.birchbox.com | Station: N, R to Prince St.
Cameras and Electronics
Branch location at 103 Prince Street, between Greene and Spring streets. See Midtown East for full review.
This high-end baby store is often gridlocked with strollers but stocks nearly everything a stylish parent (and baby) could ever need. The Giggle flagship carries all the gear and accessories to build a chic nursery, including Dwell bedding, plush toys, and bold kids’ clothing. Basic gear such as highchairs and strollers are also sold, and the staff makes sure parents know how to fold that complicated stroller before leaving the store. Additional Giggle outlets are located on the Upper West and Upper East sides. | 120 Wooster St., between Spring and Prince sts., SoHo | 212/334–5817 | www.giggle.com | Station: N, R to Prince St.
If want to pick up stylish clothing for yourself as well as your children, head to this location of J.Crew, which stocks women’s clothing as well its Crewcuts line. Stocking pint-size versions of the preppy classic clothes the brand is famous for, this shop is replete with cords, cashmere sweaters, and blazers for the junior set as well as moms. | 99 Prince St., between Greene and Mercer sts., SoHo | 212/966–2739 | www.jcrew.com | Station: C, E to Spring St.
Les Petits Chapelais.
Designed and made in France, these clothes for kids (from newborn up to age 12) are cute and stylish but also practical. Corduroy outfits have details like embroidered flowers and contrasting cuffs, and soft, fleecy jackets are reversible. There’s also a line of sailor-inspired clothes. | 146 Sullivan St., between Houston and Prince sts., SoHo | 212/625–1023 | Station: C, E to Spring St.
& Other Stories.
Owned by Swedish megastore H&M, this new space focuses on midrange clothes and bold twists on staples designed in Paris and Stockholm. Come here to browse chunky sweaters, pointy-toed flats, and printed coats. Don’t miss the designer collaborations and beauty section. | 575 Broadway, between Houston and Prince sts., | 646/767–3063 | www.stories.com/us | Station: N, R to Prince St.
Fodor’s Choice | 3X1.
In this huge denim shop, which doubles as a factory, customers can watch 3x1 jeans being made. The walls of the pristine white space are lined with an assortment of more than 600 varieties of selvedge denim. Those looking for a bespoke pair start by selecting the perfect denim. Jeans are hand-cut and sewn by the in-house seamstresses, who work in a glass-enclosed space. Shoppers can also buy off-the-rack jeans, with hems tailored on the spot (starting at $195). | 15 Mercer St., between Grand and Howard sts., SoHo | 212/391–6969 | www.3x1.us | Station: 6, J, N, Q, R, Z to Canal St.
7 for All Mankind.
Whether you’re hunting for superskinny, high-waisted, or boot-cut jeans in a dark or distressed finish, this temple to denim has it all. The jeans are a firm celebrity favorite (Cameron Diaz is a fan), but be warned: although they are guaranteed to make your derriere look good, they don’t come cheap. You also find stylish and sexy dresses here, plus sweaters and jackets for men and women. | 394 West Broadway, between Broome and Spring sts., SoHo | 212/226–8615 | www.7forallmankind.com | Station: C, E to Spring St.
A Bathing Ape.
Known simply as BAPE to devotees, this exclusive label has a cult following in its native Tokyo. At first it may be hard to see what the fuss is about. A small selection of camouflage gear and limited-edition T-shirts is placed throughout the minimalist space; the real scene stealers are the flashy retro-style sneakers in neon colors. | 91 Greene St., between Prince and Spring sts., SoHo | 212/925–0222 | www.bape.com | Station: N, R to Prince St.
Fodor’s Choice | Agent Provocateur.
If Victoria’s Secret is too tame for you, try this British lingerie shop, which has a naughty twist. Showpieces include boned corsets, lace sets with contrast-color trim, bottoms tied with satin ribbons, and a few fetish-type leather ensembles. A great selection of stockings is complemented by the garter belts to secure them. | 133 Mercer St., between Prince and Spring sts., SoHo | 212/965–0229 | www.agentprovocateur.com | Station: N, R to Prince St.
Vogue darling Alexander Wang’s boutique is as unfussy—but cool—as his clothes. In between browsing for perfectly slouchy tank tops, sheath dresses, or edgy ankle boots, shoppers should check out the rotating display of luxe objects tucked inside the store’s cage, which has included furry punching bags and marbelized surfboards | 103 Grand St., between Greene and Mercer sts., SoHo | 212/977–9683 | www.alexanderwang.com | Station: 6, J, N, Q, R, Z to Canal St.
Allan & Suzi.
The duo behind Allan & Suzi has been selling pristine vintage clothing to celebrities for years—and has also outfitted the cast of Sex and the City. Their downtown store sells a mix of new and vintage finds, ranging from the elegant to the wacky. Dig, and you may find a Gaultier gown or a Pauline Trigère dress, along with crazy disco gear. | 237 Centre St., between Grand and Broome sts., SoHo | 212/724–7445 | www.allanandsuzi.net | Station: 6, J, N, Q, R, Z to Canal St.
American Two Shot.
This boutique sells a carefully curated mix of contemporary designs for men and women, including clothing from Timo Weiland, Lazy Oaf and Nanushka, as well as rare vintage finds. The displays are fun and witty (you might see a voodoo doll). The space also functions as an art gallery and includes an outpost of Cafe Integral for shoppers in need of a caffeine fix. The shop recently launched its own clothing line, which is made in LA. | 135 Grand St., between Crosby and Lafayette sts., SoHo | 212/925–3403 | www.americantwoshot.com | Station: 6, J, N, Q, R, Z to Canal St.
The violet-and-black salon, with its Victorian rock-chick vibe, is the ideal setting for Sui’s bohemian and rocker-influenced designs and colorful beauty products. | 113 Greene St., between Prince and Spring sts.,SoHo | 212/941–8406 | www.annasui.com | Station: N, R to Prince St.
This hip French boutique sells deceptively simple clothes in an equally understated setting. Choose fromsharply cut gabardine and corduroy suits to dark denim jeans and jackets. For women, best bets include striped sweaters and skinny jeans. | 131 Mercer St., between Prince and Spring sts., SoHo | 212/966–9685 | www.apc.fr | Station: 6 to Spring St.; N, R to Prince St.; B, D, F, M to Broadway–Lafayette St.
This glossy new flagship is sheathed in acres of green marble and limestone. The two-story space has a minimalist design, all the better to show off creative director Alexander Wang’s structured designs. Don’t miss the luxurious handbags and leather shoes. | 148 Mercer St., between Houston and Prince St., SoHo | 212/206–0872 | www.balenciaga.com | Station: C, E to 23rd St.
Bloomingdale’s. Branch location at 504 Broadway, between Broome and Spring streets.
Featherweight cashmere sweaters, wraps, and throws in every hue, from Easter-egg pastels to rich jewel tones, have made Fischer the darling of the preppy set. His shop also carries leather accessories, housewares, and baby clothes. | 80 Wooster St., between Spring and Broome sts., SoHo | 212/965–9009 | www.christopherfischer.com | Station: N, R to Prince St.
Fodor’s Choice | Comptoir des Cotonniers.
The “cotton counter” angles for multigenerational shopping, lining up stylish, comfortable basics for babies, twentysomethings, ladies of a certain age, and everyone in between. There’s a subtle Parisian vibe to the understated tunics, dresses, and separates; colors tend to be muted. The brand’s first U.S. branch has a nature-friendly minimalist look, with pale-wood floors and lots of natural light. | 155 Spring St., at West Broadway, SoHo | 212/274–0830 | www.comptoirdescotonniers.com | Station: C, E to Spring St.
Everything about this boutique is sexy and minimalist, with a rock’n’ roll edge. The clothes—and lighting—are dark. Shoppers find sharply tailored wool pants for men and silky tops for women in muted shades of black, gray, and charcoal, along with motorcycle boots and leather gloves. | 150 Greene St., between Houston and Prince sts., SoHo | 212/431–1530 | www.costumenational.com | Station: N, R to Prince St.
At this middle child of the Armani trio, the clothes are elegant without ever being fussy and frequently stocked in cream, muted blues, and ever-cool shades of taupe. | 410 West Broadway, at Spring St., SoHo | 646/613–8099 | www.armani.com/us/emporioarmani | Station: C, E to Spring St.
This Italian fashion house is known for its trademark paisleys and bold patterns, which cover everything from suits and dresses to lustrous pillows. Etro’s downtown location combines the best of Italy with a Soho loft, with high tin ceilings, brightly colored rugs, and industrial lighting. | 89 Greene St., between Spring and Prince sts., SoHo | 646/329–6929 | www.etro.com | Station: N, R to Prince St.
This British-owned company stocks an impressive collection of on-trend clothing for men and women at reasonable prices. Some of the best bets are the sharply tailored trench coats and jeans, as well as dresses. For men, try the cashmere sweaters and skinny trousers. | 435 West Broadway, | 212/219–1197 | www.frenchconnection.com | Station: C, E to Spring St.
Fodor’s Choice | Isabel Marant.
If you’re after that casually glamorous Parisian vibe, look no further than Isabel Marant. Long a favorite of globe-trotting fashionistas, this location is the French designer’s first U.S. retail store. The tailored jackets, shorts, and flirty dresses are eclectic and sophisticated, with textured, deeply hued fabrics. | 469 Broome St., at Greene St., SoHo | 212/219–2284 | www.isabelmarant.tm.fr | Station: N, R to Prince St.
Kiki de Montparnasse.
Named for Man Ray’s mistress and muse from the 1940s, this upscale lingerie store serves up decadent styles in a seductive but artistic setting. Shoppers find exquisitely made corsets and bra and underwear sets, but a large portion of the store is used as a rotating art gallery for erotic art. | 79 Greene St., at Spring St., SoHo | 212/965–8150 | www.kikidm.com | Station: N, R to Prince St.
Think of this space as a mini department store for some of the biggest names in fashion, including Alexander Wang, Azzedine Alaïa, Roland Mouret and Valentino Garavani. The multilevel store has a fun, Pop Art–inspired design, complete with neon signs suggesting that shoppers “leave looking lovely” and “life is short, buy the shoes.”|477 Broome St., between Greene and Wooster sts., SoHo | 212/941–9656 | www.kirnazabete.com | Station: N, R to Prince St.
One of Marc Jacobs’ various NYC boutiques, this location, housed in a former garage, retails crisply tailored designs for men and women in luxurious fabrics: silk, cashmere, wool bouclé, and tweeds ranging from the demure to the flamboyant. The details, though—oversize buttons, circular patch pockets, and military-style grommet belts—add a sartorial wink. The shoe selection is not to be missed. | 163 Mercer St., between Houston and Prince sts., SoHo | 212/343–1490 | www.marcjacobs.com | Station: N, R to Prince St.
If you’re a fan of the boho-chic look, stock up on Consuelo Castiglioni’s brightlycolored, happy clothes here. The collection features dresses and jackets in quirky prints and many of the silhouettes are vintage-inspired. Accessories are also eye-popping. | 161 Mercer St., between W. Houston and Prince sts., SoHo | 212/343–3912 | www.marni.com | Station: N, R to Prince St.
Prada front woman Miuccia Prada established a secondary line (bearing her childhood nickname, Miu Miu) to showcase her more experimental ideas. Look for Prada-esque styles in more daring colors and cuts, such as high-waist skirts with scalloped edges, Peter Pan–collar dresses in bold patterns, and patent-leather pumps. | 100 Prince St., between Mercer and Greene sts., SoHo | 212/334–5156 | www.miumiu.com | Station: N, R to Prince St.
Many New York women swear by Moncler coats to keep them warm but still stylish throughout the winter. This store is the Italian brand’s first foray into New York. The knee-length puffer is a firm favorite, but there are stylish ski jackets and accessories, along with pieces created in collaboration with designers like Giambattista Valli. | 90 Prince St., between Mercer St. and Broadway, SoHo | 646/350–3620 | www.moncler.com | Station: N, R to Prince St.
Gentlemen, if you’re tired of the corporate look, head to Odin to spruce up your weekend wardrobe. This boutique, which caters only to men, carries separates from cool brands including Rag & Bone, Thom Browne, and Band Of Outsiders. The cheerful and helpful staff guarantees you will leave looking hip—but not as if you’re trying too hard. | 199 Lafayette St., between Broome and Kenmare sts., SoHo | 212/966–0026 | www.odinnewyork.com | Station: 6 to Spring St.
Fodor’s Choice | Opening Ceremony.
Just like Colette in Paris, Opening Ceremony bills itself as a concept store, which means you never know what you’ll find. The owners are constantly globetrotting to soak up the work of foreign designers and bring back the best clothing, products, and vintage items to showcase in their store. Hong Kong, Japan, Brazil, and the United Kingdom have all been represented. There’s also a gallery space here. | 35 Howard St., between Broadway and Lafayette St., SoHo | 212/219–2688 | www.openingceremony.us | Station: 6, J, N, Q, R, Z to Canal St.
Fans love Paul Smith for his classic-with-a-twist clothes, and this 5,000-square-foot flagship is a temple to his design ethos and inspirations. Victorian mahogany cases complement the dandyish British styles they hold. Embroidered vests; brightly striped socks, scarves, and shirts; and tongue-in-cheek cuff links are all signature Paul Smith looks, along with classic suits and outerwear for men and women.Shoppers also find furniture and a selection of photography books and ephemera. | 142 Greene St., between Houston and Prince sts., SoHo | 646/613–3060 | www.paulsmith.co.uk | Station: N, R to Prince St.
Fodor’s Choice | Piperlime.
This popular e-tailer now has its first brick-and-mortar store. The large loftlike spacecarries clothing from top designers as well as its own Piperlime Collection. To round out your outfit, browse handbags from Zac Posen and Milly, or shoes from B Brian Atwood and Stuart Weitzman. Visitors can also shop online from in-store kiosks and iPads. | 121 Wooster St., between Prince and Spring sts., SoHo | 212/343–4284 | www.piperlime.com | Station: N, R to Prince St.
This ultramodern space, designed by Rem Koolhaas, incorporates so many technological innovations that it was written up in Popular Science. Dressing room glass walls turn opaque at the touch of a button, and instead of mirrors, shoppers can check themselves out in large video panels. | 575 Broadway, at Prince St., SoHo | 212/334–8888 | www.prada.com | Station: N, R to Prince St.
R by 45rpm.
This cult favorite Japanese denim brand may be pricey, but fans love the label for its attention to detail, like hand-dyed denim woven on antique looms. The T-shirts are particularly stylish. | 169 Mercer St., between Houston and Prince sts., SoHo | 917/237–0045 | www.rby45rpm.com | Station: N, R to Prince St.
Think of Reiss as the Banana Republic of Britain—a go-to place for casual-but-tailored clothes at a relatively gentle price. Kate Middleton is a loyal customer. Standouts for women include cowl-neck sweater dresses and A-line skirts. Men’s wool combat trousers are complemented by shrunken blazers, military-inspired peacoats, and trim leather jackets. | 387 West Broadway, between Spring and Broome sts., SoHo | 212/925–5707 | www.reissonline.com | Station: N, R to Prince St.
Saint Laurent Paris.
This fabled French house is now under the direction of Hedi Slimane, who is revitalizing the brand and opened a new downtown flagship, with high ceilings and a monochromatic palette. The new Saint Laurent nods to the past, with a refined, polished elegance. Don’t miss the sleek shoes and structured handbags. | 80 Greene St., between Spring and Broome sts., SoHo | 212/431–3240 | www.ysl.com | Station: N, R to Prince St.; 6 to Spring St.
This French-pedigreed shop carries classic, understated menswear imported from Europe at reasonable prices. Linen and corduroy painter’s coats are best sellers, along with V-neck sweaters and a respectable collection of slim-cut suits. | 181 Prince St., between Sullivan and MacDougal Sts., SoHo | 212/598–5980 | www.seanstore.com | Station: N, R to Prince St.
Seize sur Vingt.
Head to this boutique if you’re ready to splurge on an exquisitely tailored shirt or suit. Men and women can pick out an off-the-rack item and have it tailored in-house for a perfect fit, or create a fully bespoke shirt from a mind-boggling array of fabrics (linen, broadcloth oxford, flannel). To complete the look, sweaters, shoes, and accessories are also available. | 78 Greene St., between Spring and Broome sts., SoHo | 212/625–1620 | www.16sur20.com | Station: N, R to Prince St.
McCartney’s flagship store has a luxe look, thanks to parquet flooring and touches of gold found in the Art Deco sculptures and clothing racks. Her main collection, done mostly in gauzy, muted colors, is on the top floor, while children’s, Adidas by Stella McCartney, and lingerie are on the lower level. In keeping with McCartney’s vegetarianism, fur and leather are verboten. | 112 Greene St., between Spring and Prince sts., SoHo | 212/255–1556 | www.stellamccartney.com | Station: N, R to Prince St.
This Rhode Island School of Design graduate is making waves for her eponymous women’s collection. The boutique has an airy, minimalist feel, with whitewash walls and rotating art exhibits that perfectly match the clothing’s pared-down aesthetic. Your best bets are floaty silk dresses and striking knitwear. | 97 Crosby St., between Prince and Spring sts., SoHo | 212/226–1932 | www.tessgiberson.com | Station: N, R to Prince St.
British cult favorite Topshop, which has only a handful of U.S. stores, is a master at pumping out of-the-minute-fashion at reasonable prices. It can be a madhouse, and items sell quickly, but it’s worth fighting the crowds. Slinky dresses are around $130, and jeans and jumpsuits are about $90. Coats and shoes are also standouts. Male stylistas can browse through the ground-level Topman. | 478 Broadway, between Broome and Grand sts., SoHo | 212/966–9555 | www.topshop.com | Station: 6 to Spring St.; N, R to Prince St.
Retail is in the blood of Trademark founders Pookie and Louisa Burch, the daughters of C. Wonder founder Chris Burch. Both their boutique and clothing line reflect a restrained American design aesthetic. Their collection ranges from boxy jackets to totes and turtleneck sweaters. | 95 Grand St., between Greene and Mercer sts., | 212/206–8206 | www.trade-mark.com | Station: 6, J, N, Q, R, Z to Canal St.
In a nod to this brand’s almost 200-year history, Woolrich’s first retail space is decorated with vintage shearing tools and catalogs from the original Pennsylvania mill. The space is cozy, thanks to throw rugs and industrial-style lighting, and the full Woolrich product line is sold here, from sweaters to blankets and thick winter coats. | 125 Wooster St., between Prince and Spring sts., | 646/371–9968 | www.woolrich.com | Station: N, R to Prince St.
Not content designing just wedding dresses, Wang is also a star at evening wear and casual-but-chic daywear. Her entire ready-to-wear collection is showcased here in this gleaming, all-white store. Choose from clothes ranging from sexy one-shouldered satin gowns to cashmere sweaters and wool pencil skirts. Don’t miss the shoe collection. | 158 Mercer St., between Houston and Prince sts., SoHo | 212/382–2184 | www.verawang.com | Station: N, R to Prince St.
Known for her East-meets-West designs, Tam makes dresses, blouses, and trousers with clean lines and bold prints in luxurious fabrics like silk. | 40 Mercer St., at Grand St., SoHo | 212/966–2398 | www.viviennetam.com | Station: N, R to Prince St.
Fodor’s Choice | Warm.
If you want to feel the love, come to this little boutique owned by lifelong surfers Winnie Beattie and her husband Rob Magnotta. Everything has a sunny, beachy vibe, from leather sandals, bikinis, and bleached sweaters to hand-blown glass vases. There’s also a collection of children’s books, housewares, and menswear. | 181 Mott St., between Kenmare and Broome sts., SoHo | 212/925–1200 | www.warmny.com | Station: 6 to Spring St.
Fodor’s Choice | What Goes Around Comes Around.
Professional stylists and celebrities flock here to dig up pristine vintage items like Levi’s and Azzedine Alaïa dresses, as well as Hermès scarves and Chanel jewelry. The vintage rock tees (think Black Sabbath, Mötley Crüe) are great finds but can set you back an eye-watering $300–$600. | 351 West Broadway, between Broome and Grand sts., SoHo | 212/343–1225 | www.whatgoesaroundnyc.com | Station: 6, J, N, Q, R, Z to Canal St.
A herringbone coat or bit of neon trim is about as unruly as this label gets. The designs are unflappable, whether shirtdresses or boxy jackets, and the colors, subdued. | 30 Howard St., at Crosby St., SoHo | 212/925–2345 | www.jilsander.com | Station: 6, N, Q, R, J, Z to Canal St.
Fodor’s Choice | Purl.
Anyone with a crafty bent will fall in love with this colorful paradise of top-quality knitting and sewing supplies, gorgeous craft books, and much, much more. Prices aren’t cheap but the sales people are extra friendly. It’s worth a browse even if you’re not planning to buy anything. | 459 Broome St., between Mercer and Green sts., SoHo | 212/420–8796 | www.purlsoho.com | Station: 6 to Spring St.
Food and Treats
Fodor’s Choice | Harney & Sons.
Fancy a cuppa? Harney & Sons produce more than 250 varieties of loose tea, which can be sampled at their store and tea salon in SoHo. The design is sleek and dramatic, with a 24-foot-long tasting bar and floor-to-ceiling shelves stocked with tea. Shoppers find classic brews like English Breakfast and Oolong, along with interesting herbals (ginger and liquorice, or mint verbena). Enjoy a cup with a scone or other light fare, available at the tea salon. | 433 Broome St., between Broadway and Crosby St., SoHo | 212/933–4853 | www.harney.com | Station: 6 to Spring St.
Fodor’s Choice | Jacques Torres Chocolates.
Visit the café and shop here and be literally surrounded by chocolate. The glass-walled downtown space also houses Torres’s chocolate factory, so you can watch the goodies being made while sipping a richly spiced cocoa or nibbling on a Java Junkie bar. Signature taste: the “wicked” chocolate, laced with cinnamon and chili pepper. | 350 Hudson St., at King St., SoHo | 212/414–2462 | www.mrchocolate.com | Station: 1 to Houston St.
Owner Kee Ling Tong whips up delicious truffles and macaroons with unusual, Asian-inspired flavors. Try the ginger peach and rosewater lychee macaroons, or truffles flavored with lemongrass mint and tamarind. | 80 Thompson St., between Spring and Broome sts., SoHo | 212/334–3284 | www.keeschocolates.com | Station: C, E to Spring St.
The handmade chocolates here are nothing less than works of art. Square truffles and bonbons—in flavors like Earl Grey, cappuccino, passion fruit, and saffron—are painted with edible dyes (cocoa butter dyed with natural coloring) so each resembles a miniature painting. Relax in the Cacao Bar and Tea Salon while sipping an Aztec hot chocolate, made from rich cacao, rather than cocoa powder. | 484 Broome St., between West Broadway and Wooster St., SoHo | 212/925–6999 | www.mariebelle.com | Station: N, R to Prince St.; 6, C, E to Spring St.
Fodor’s Choice | Vosges Haut Chocolat.
This chandeliered salon lined with apothecary shelves takes a global approach to chocolate. Many of the creations are travel-inspired: the Budapest bonbons combine dark chocolate and Hungarian paprika, and the Black Pearls contain wasabi. Don’t miss the best-selling chocolate bacon bars. | 132 Spring St., SoHo | 212/625–2929 | www.vosgeschocolate.com | Station: N, R to Prince St.
Owner Federico de Vera crisscrosses the globe searching for unique decorative products, so shoppers never know what they might find here. Venetian glass vases, Thai Buddhas, and antique rose-cut diamond rings are typical finds. | 1 Crosby St., at Howard St., SoHo | 212/625–0838 | www.deveraobjects.com | Station: 6, J, N, Q, R, Z to Canal St.
Fodor’s Choice | Jonathan Adler.
Everything at this flagship store, housed in a former plumbing factory, is fun and happy. Adler boldly funks up midcentury modern design, with striped, striated, or curvy handmade pottery (ranging from a $30 vase to a chunky $400 lamp) and hand-loomed wool pillow covers, rugs, and throws. Pull up to the Gift Bar if you need inspiration for a present. | 53 Greene St., between Broome and Grand sts., SoHo | 212/941–8950 | www.jonathanadler.com | Station: 6, J, N, Q, R, Z to Canal St.
Fodor’s Choice | Matter.
This beautifully curated store appeals to fans of sleek, modern furniture—if money is no object. How about the iconic Tank armchair by Alvar Aalto for a cool $5,000? Or a smoked-glass coffee table by Established & Sons for $1,400? Even if your budget is limited, Matter is worth a visit for inspiration. | 405 Broome St., between Centre and Lafayette sts., SoHo | 212/343–2600 | www.mattermatters.com | Station: 6 to Spring St.; J, Z to Bowery.
Room & Board.
Fans of streamlined, midcentury modern furniture ascend to heaven here. This location is stocked with sleek sofas, beds, and children’s furniture as well as accessories like rugs and lamps—90% of it made in America. Design aficionados can choose from iconic pieces like seating cubes from Frank Gehry and Eames molded plywood chairs, or items from up-and-coming designers. | 105 Wooster St., between Spring and Prince sts., SoHo | 212/334–4343 | www.roomandboard.com | Station: N, R to Prince St.
Jewelry and Accessories
Fodor’s Choice | Alexis Bittar.
This Brooklyn-born designer began selling his first jewelry line, made from Depression-era glass, on a corner in SoHo. Now, Bittar counts A-list celebs and fashion editors among his fans. He makes clean-line, big-statement jewelry from vermeil, colored Lucite, pearls, and vintage glass. The store mirrors this aesthetic with a mix of old and new, like antique-white Victorian-era lion’s-claw tables and Plexiglas walls. | 465 Broome St., between Mercer and Greene sts., SoHo | 212/625–8340 | www.alexisbittar.com | Station: N, R to Prince St.
Fodor’s Choice | Aurélie Bidermann.
This French jeweler’s New York boutique is all white with pops of color, and includes a mural commissioned from a street artist. Bidermann’s signature look is bold and inspired by her travels and nature. Look out for lace filigree gold cuffs, large turquoise necklaces, and drop earrings in the shape of gingko leaves. | 265 Lafayette St., between Prince and Springs sts., | 212/335–0604 | www.aureliebidermann.com | Station: N, R Prince St.
Fodor’s Choice | Broken English.
This L.A. favorite has now made its way to New York. Owner Laura Freedman sells a well-curated selection of jewelry from designers including Anita Ko and Carla Amorim. Expect delicate and whimsical pieces, from diamond-encrusted ear cuffs to geometric rings. | 56 Crosby St., between Spring and Broome sts., | 212/219–1264 | www.brokenenglishjewelry.com | Station: 6 to Spring St.
The Donald’s daughter would like to see you dripping in her diamonds. Her SoHo location has an Art Deco look, with black-and-white furniture and plenty of glittering chandeliers. But the real bling is the jewelry—drop earrings, tassel lariats, and bold cocktail rings. Don’t miss the elegant Bridal Bar for wedding jewelry. | 109 Mercer St., between Prince and Spring sts., SoHo | 212/756–9912 | www.ivankatrumpcollection.com | Station: N, R to Prince St.
Robert Lee Morris.
If you buy into the mantra that bigger is better, make a stop here. Morris designs big, chunky jewelry that is anything but understated. Gold and silver cuffs have serious weight, and necklaces and earrings dangle with hammered disks for a “wind chime” effect. Some pieces incorporate diamonds; others have semiprecious stones like turquoise or citrine. | 400 West Broadway, between Broome and Spring sts., SoHo | 212/431–9405 | www.robertleemorris.com | Station: C, E to Spring St.
Everything about this boutique is minimalist, from the architecture to the jewelry. Most of the designs (from Henrich & Denzel to Beatrice Mueller) have a streamlined, almost industrial look: diamonds are set in brushed platinum, and gold bangles are impossibly delicate. | 411 West Broadway, at Spring St., SoHo | 212/941–1023 | www.stuartmoore.com | Station: C, E to Spring St.; N, R to Prince St.
Shoppers find innovative combinations of silver, gold, and platinum teamed with wood, leather, semiprecious stones, and diamonds at this bold jewelry store. There is also a wide selection of wedding bands, cufflinks, earrings, and pendants. | 152 Mercer St., between Houston and Prince sts., SoHo | 212/941–7770 | www.versani.com | Station: N, R to Prince St.
Shoes, Handbags, and Leather Goods
Urbanites love this Spanish footwear company for its funky but comfortable shoes. Their flagship store has an unusual pagoda-style roof made from tubes. Inside the store, there’s a vertical garden. All the slip-ons and lace-ups here have generously rounded toes and a springy feel. | 110 Prince St., between Wooster and Greene sts., SoHo | 212/343–4220 | www.camper.com | Station: N, R to Prince St.
Fodor’s Choice | The Frye Company.
This 6,000-square-foot mecca to boots has anold western feel, thanks to the exposed brick walls and reclaimed barn doors. Boots can be tattooed—or hot stamped—with your initials while you wait in the lounge. In addition to Frye’s famed boots, shoppers can also pick from flats, oxfords, clogs, and mules. | 113 Spring St., between Mercer and Greene sts., SoHo | 212/226–3793 | www.thefryecompany.com | Station: N, R to Prince St.
Their Le Pliage foldable nylon bags may have become a preppy staple but don’t think this label is stuffy—or all about nylon. There’s a wide selection of leather handbags as well as wallets, belts, and shoes. Kate Moss also designs a line for Longchamp. | 132 Spring St., at Elizabeth St., SoHo | 212/343–7444 | www.longchamp.com | Station: N, R to Prince St.
NoLIta (“North of Little Italy”) is a shopping mecca, thanks to the abundance of boutiques that range from quirky to elegant. Like SoHo, NoLIta has changed from an understated, locals-only area to a crowded weekend magnet, as much about people-watching as shopping. Still, unlike those of its SoHo neighbor, these stores remain largely independent. Running along the parallel north–south spines of Elizabeth, Mott, and Mulberry streets, between Houston and Kenmare streets, NoLIta’s boutiques tend to be small and, as real estate costs dictate, somewhat pricey.
Lafco New York.
A heavy, iron-barred door leads to a hushed, scented inner sanctum of beauty products. This location is the official retailer of the 600-year-old Santa Maria Novella products from Italy, which include intriguingly archaic colognes, creams, and soaps such as Dental Elixir and rose rice powder. Everything is packaged in bottles and jars with antique-style apothecary labels. There’s also a wide selection of fragrances. | 285 Lafayette St., between Houston and Prince sts., NoLIta | 212/925–0001 | www.lafcony.com | Station: N, R to Prince St.
Fodor’s Choice | Le Labo.
If you’re bored with the perfume stock at department stores, come to this tiny boutique with a rustic industrial vibe and resident mixologist who helps create your ideal perfume. After choosing your favorite scents, the perfume is mixed and a personalized label created for your bottle. | 233 Elizabeth St., between Prince and Houston sts., NoLIta | 212/219–2230 | www.lelabofragrances.com | Station: B, D, F, M to Broadway–Lafayette St.
Books and Stationery
Fodor’s Choice | McNally Jackson.
This cozy, independent bookstore is a bibliophile’s dream. The bright two-story space has hardwood floors, a café, and plenty of chairs for lounging and curling up with a book. More than 50,000 books are stocked and the literary section is organized geographically. Budding authors can self-print their tomes on a device called the Espresso Book Machine. | 52 Prince St., between Lafayette and Mulberry sts.,NoLIta | 212/274–1160 | www.mcnallyjackson.com | Station: N, R to Prince St.; 6 to Spring St.
Creatures of Comfort.
Owner Jade Lai has brought her popular L.A. outpost to New York. The open, airy boutique racks cool clothes from emerging designers alongside products from around the world. Most of the colors are muted, and brands carried include Acne, Band of Outsiders and the house label, Creatures of Comfort. There’s a small selection of shoes, as well as under the radar beauty products, such as Rodin hand cream. | 205 Mulberry St., between Spring and Kenmare sts., NoLIta | 212/925–1005 | www.creaturesofcomfort.us | Station: 6 to Spring St.
Fodor’s Choice | Duncan Quinn.
Described as “Savile Row meets Rock ‘n’ Roll” by GQ, this designer provides full bespoke and ready-to-wear services for everything from chalk-stripe suits to cuff links and croquet shirts, all in a shop not much bigger than its silk pocket squares. Off-the-rack shirts are handmade in Italy, but if you want to splurge, get fitted for a shirt with mother-of-pearl buttons. | 70–80 Kenmare St., between Mott and Mulberry sts.,NoLIta | 212/226–7030 | www.duncanquinn.com | Station: 6 to Spring St.
The clothing at this couture consignment store harks back only one or two seasons, and in some cases, the items have never been worn. Browse through the racks to spot gems from Lanvin, Chanel, and Alexander McQueen. There are multiple locations around the city; this outpost also carries menswear. | 15 Bleecker St., at Elizabeth St., NoLIta | 212/228–8511 | www.inanyc.com | Station: 6 to Bleecker St.
There aren’t too many boutiques where the owner sometimes whips up a snack for customers in the boutique’s custom kitchen, but this designer—famous for dressing Diddy and Johnny Depp—wanted his boutique to have a homey feel. The clothes veer toward the fabulous: suede shoes, linen suits, and cashmere sweaters, which are displayed in armoires. | 293 Mott St., at Houston St., NoLIta | 212/319–2770 | www.jaykos.tumblr.com | Station: B, D, F, M to Broadway–Lafayette St.
Fodor’s Choice | Malia Mills.
Fit fanatics have met their match here—especially those gals who are different sizes on top and bottom (bikini tops go up to size E). Flattering bikini tops and bottoms are sold separately: halters, bandeaus, and triangle tops, plus boy-cut, side-tie, and low-ride bottoms. There’s a collection of one-pieces as well. | 199 Mulberry St., between Spring and Kenmare sts., NoLIta | 212/625–2311 | www.maliamills.com | Station: 6 to Spring St.
Born in Ireland but settled in California, O’Leary is known for her knitwear. Her NoLIta boutique stocks everything from cashmere to cable knit in sweaters, tunics, and capes. Come here when the temperature starts to drop and you want to feel cozy. | 279 Mott St., between Prince and Houston sts., NoLIta | 646/274–9498 | www.margaretoleary.com | Station: N, R to Prince St.
Feminine and flirty are the best way to describe the line at this cheerful shop; skirts are pleated, shift dresses have lace appliqués, and fur shrugs have tiny sleeves. | 423 Broome St., between Lafayette and Crosby sts., NoLIta | 212/219–8265 | www.nanettelepore.com | Station: 6 to Spring St.
Most of the clothing here comes in black or leather, and the store carries high-end designers in addition to its own line. Come here for skinny jeans, capes, and draped jersey dresses. | 28 Bond St., between Lafayette St. and Bowery, NoLIta | 212/677–1293 | www.oaknyc.com | Station: 6 to Bleecker St.
If you’re serious about vintage—and have deep pockets—Resurrection stocks a treasure trove of pristine pieces from Chanel, Gucci, Halston, Alaia, and YSL among others. Kate Moss is a fan, and designers like Marc Jacobs and Anna Sui have sought inspiration among the racks. | 217 Mott St., between Prince and Spring sts., NoLIta | 212/625–1374 | www.resurrectionvintage.com | Station: 6 to Spring St.
Jewelry and Accessories
This Antipodean-owned brand designs jewelry and housewares inspired by nature and organic shapes. Resin is used to craft jewelry and vases in bold colors like hot pink and orange. Don’t miss the striking tableware. | 211 Elizabeth St., between Houston and Prince sts., NoLIta | 212/680–3523 | www.dinosaurdesigns.com.au | Station: N, R to Prince St.
This eponymous designer specializes in vintage-inspired jewelry and antiques: delicate Art Deco earrings, vintage lockets, and necklaces fashioned from antique charms.The Erica Weiner collection includes pieces under $200. | 173 Elizabeth St., between Kenmare and Spring sts., NoLIta | 212/334–6383 | www.ericaweiner.com | Station: 6 to Spring St.; J, Z to Bowery.
Minimalist, Eastern styling has gained these designers a cult following. The Indian-inspired, hand-finished gold bangles, earrings, and necklaces are covered in delicate jewels. Although the fine jewelry is expensive, small sterling silver pendants start at around $170. | 241 Elizabeth St., between Houston and Prince sts., NoLIta | 917/237–9215 | www.meandrojewelry.com | Station: N, R to Prince St.
Shoes, Handbags, and Leather Goods
L.A.-based designer Clare Vivier’s first New York store displays her signature simple-but-elegant leather fold-over clutches in every size and color, as well as understated totes and duffels. There is a line of men’s accessories, plus iPad cases, sunglasses,and other sundries. | 239 Elizabeth St., between Houston and Prince sts., NoLIta | 646/484–5757 | www.clairevivier.com | Station: N, R to Prince St.
The bags here marry form and function. Totes and messenger bags come in durable leather and nylon, and some handbags have a wealth of inner pockets. | 238 Mott St., between Prince and Spring sts., NoLIta | 212/966–4388 | www.highwaybuzz.com | Station: 6 to Bleecker St.
John Fluevog Shoes.
The inventor of the “Angel” sole (protects against water, acid, and “Satan”), Fluevog designs chunky, funky shoes and boots for men and women that are popular with rock stars and those that want to look like one. | 250 Mulberry St., at Prince St., NoLIta | 212/431–4484 | www.fluevog.com | Station: N, R to Prince St.
This designer, a graduate of the Fashion Institute of Technology, has perfected the sexy-but-edgy look in her handcrafted shoes. There are simple flats and wedges along with peep-toe ankle boots and sky-high heels. Most designs hover around the $250 mark. | 219 Mott St., between Prince and Spring sts., NoLIta | 212/842–2134 | www.kathrynamberleigh.com | Station: 6 to Spring St.
The details—just-right T-straps, small buckles, a perfectly pointy toe—make these women’s shoes irresistible. Prices start around $300, so the sales are big events. | 28 Prince St., between Mott and Elizabeth sts.,NoLIta | 212/219–3893 | www.sigersonmorrison.com | Station: 6 to Spring St.; N, R to Prince St.
Although messenger bags are now ubiquitous, pay homage to the store that started it all. Superdurable, they come in waxed canvas as well as nylon, and the line has expanded to include totes, duffels, and travel bags, all in unadorned, simple styles. | 258 Elizabeth St., between Houston and Prince sts., NoLIta | 212/226–9655 | www.manhattanportage.com | Station: N, R to Prince St.
EAST VILLAGE AND LOWER EAST SIDE
The East Village is a fabulous hunting ground for independent boutiques.
Antiques and Collectibles
Lost City Arts.
This sprawling shop is one of the best places to shop for 20thcentury–design furniture, lighting, and accessories. Lost City can help you relive the Machine Age with an in-house, retro-modern line of furniture. | 18 Cooper Sq., at 5th St., East Village | 212/375–0500 | www.lostcityarts.com | Station: 6 to Astor Pl.
Fodor’s Choice | Bond No. 9.
Created by the same fragrance team as Creed, this line of scents is intended to evoke the New York City experience, with a scent for every neighborhood: Central Park, a men’s fragrance, is woodsy and “green,” and Park Avenue is discreet but not too sweet. This flagship also carries candles and body creams. | 9 Bond St., between Lafayette St. and Broadway, East Village | 212/228–1732 | www.bondno9.com | Station:6 to Bleecker St.
Fodor’s Choice | Kiehl’s Since 1851.
At this favored haunt of top models and stylists, white-smocked assistants help you choose between the lotions and potions, all of which are packaged in simple-looking bottles and jars. Some of the products, such as the Ultra Facial Cream, Creme with Silk Groom hairstyling aid, and super-rich Creme de Corps, have attained near-cult status among fans. | 109 E. 3rd Ave., at 13th St., East Village | 212/677–3171 | www.kiehls.com | Station: L to 3rd Ave.
Books and Stationery
St. Mark’s Bookshop.
This legendary indie bookstore finally has a new home. The new space is smaller than the original, but has a sleeker, more functional design thanks to gleaming white bookshelves and display tables that can be reconfigured to chairs during readings. The store’s specialties include poetry and graphic design, and it stays open until 11 pm. | 136 E. 3rd St., between 1st Ave. and Ave. A, East Village | 212/260–7853 | www.stmarksbookshop.com | Station: F to 2nd Ave.
Cloak & Dagger.
Come here if you like refined but on-trend looks. The racks are lined with tulip skirts, belted dresses, and trenches hand-picked by owner and designer Brookelynn Starnes. | 334 E. 9th St., between 1st and 2nd aves., East Village | 212/673–0500 | www.cloakanddaggernyc.com | Station: 6 to Astor Pl.
Fodor’s Choice | John Varvatos.
This menswear designer has long been inspired by rock ‘n’ roll. His ad campaigns have starred Franz Ferdinand and Green Day, so it is fitting that he transformed the former CBGB club into his New York flagship. The space is dotted with vintage pianos, guitars, and vinyl records. And the clothes? The jeans, leather pants, and suede shoes give you rockstar cred, but there are also classic, understated styles for the corporate set. | 315 Bowery, between 1st and 2nd sts., East Village | 212/358–0315 | www.johnvarvatos.com | Station: 6 to Bleecker St.
Pas de Deux.
Fashion editors love this little boutique—which looks like it was imported straight from Paris—thanks to the marble checkerboard floor, chandeliers, and fine woodwork. The well-curated selection includes dresses, trench coats, and denim from Isabel Marant, Thakoon Panichgul, and Alexander Wang. There are also lots of lovely little accessories, like eyeglasses, cardholders, and delicate necklaces. | 328 E. 11th St., between 1st and 2nd aves., East Village | 212/475–0075 | www.pasdedeuxny.com | Station: 6 to Astor Pl.; L to 1st Ave.
If you loved Carrie Bradshaw’s wild outfits on Sex and the City, this is the place for you. As well as designing costumes for the show, Field has been a longtime purveyor of flamboyant and campy club-kid gear. Her 4,000-square-foot East Village emporium is chockablock with teeny kilts, lamé, marabou, pleather, and vinyl, plus wigs in every color and stiletto heels in some very large sizes. | 306 Bowery, between Bleecker and Houston sts., East Village | 212/966–4066 | www.patriciafield.com | Station: 6 to Bleecker St.
Browse through racks bulging with vintage finds from the 1920s through ‘90s. Retro wear includes everything from dresses to soccer shirts and prom dresses. Although most of the nondesigner finds are affordable, Screaming Mimi’s also carries vintage designer duds from Valentino, Chloe, and Gaultier. | 382 Lafayette St., between 4th and Great Jones sts., East Village | 212/677–6464 | www.screamingmimis.com | Station: 6 to Bleecker St.
Even fashion designers like Alexander Wang have been known to pop into this high-end consignment store to browse. Racks are loaded with goodies from A-list designers such as Gucci, Stella McCartney, Diane von Furstenberg, and Phillip Lim, and the inventory changes almost daily. | 83 E. 7th St., between 1st and 2nd aves., East Village | 212/353–8443 | www.tokio7.net | Station: 6 to Astor Pl.
Trash and Vaudeville.
This punk mecca is famous for dressing stars like Debbie Harry and the Ramones back in the ‘70s, and its rock ‘n’ roll vibe lives on. Goths, punks, and pro wrestlers shop here for bondage-inspired pants and skirts, as well as vinyl corsets and mini-kilts. | 4 St. Marks Pl., between 2nd and 3rd aves., East Village | 212/982–3590 | www.trashandvaudeville.com | Station: 6 to Astor Pl.
Looking for a midcentury modern Danish desk? This is your place. Owner Stuart Zamsky crams his store with surprisingly affordable pieces that are mostly from the ‘40s through ‘70s, including tables, lamps, and chairs. Quirkier pieces include paper mobiles from the ‘70s, old fondue sets, and antique medical-office cabinets. | 304 E. 5th St., between 1st and 2nd aves., East Village | 212/598–5956 | www.whitetrashnyc.com | Station: 6 to Astor Pl.
Jewelry and Accessories
All the jewelry here is handmade in New York City, and none of it is typical. Design motifs include wrenches, Big Macs, and grenades. Tilda Swinton is a fan. | 315 East 9th St., between 1st and 2nd aves., East Village | 212/388–9045 | www.verameat.com | Station: 6 to Astor Pl.
DJs and musicians flock here for hard-to-find genres on CD and LPs, ranging from Japanese electronica and Krautrock to acid folk and Americana. You can buy concert tickets at the in-house box office. There’s also a great selection of used CDs, including seminal punk classics from the Clash and Stooges. | 15 E. 4th St., between Lafayette St. and Broadway, East Village | 212/477–8150 | www.othermusic.com | Station: 6 to Astor Pl.
Forget about Elmo and Barbie. This little shop is crammed with quirky gifts for kids like hand puppets and marionettes from Asia, telescopes and wooden rattles. Don’t miss the unusual instruments, such as a cedar kalimba. | 306 E. 9th St., between 1st and 2nd aves., East Village | 212/473–5850 | www.dinosaurhill.com | Station: 6 to Astor Pl.
Astor Wines & Spirits.
Stock up on wine, spirits, and sake at this beautiful shop. To unwind and learn more about food and wine, there’s a wine library and a kitchen for cooking classes. | 399 Lafayette St., at 4th St., East Village | 212/674–7500 | www.astorwines.com | Station: 6 to Astor Pl.
LOWER EAST SIDE
Head to the Lower East Side for excellent vintage finds and edgy looks. Once home to multitudes of Jewish immigrants and crumbling tenement buildings, the Lower East Side has transformed from New York’s bargain hunting ground into a hotbed for indie design that includes everything from clothing to furniture. Ludlow Street, one block east of Orchard, is the main drag for boutiques, bars, and low-key restaurants. Head here if you want to revamp your look with a trendier style. For the full scope of this area, prowl from Allen to Essex streets, and south of Houston Street down to Broome.
Antiques and Collectibles
Fans of midcentury modern design and sleek lines need to make a beeline here. Las Venus stocks upscale vintage furniture and accessories in excellent condition. While most of the items are sleek, this is also the place to indulge in Lucite and zebra-print fantasies. | 113 Stanton St., between Ludlow and Essex sts., Lower East Side | 212/982–0608 | www.lasvenus.com | Station: F to 2nd Ave.
Shoes, Handbags, and Leather Goods
Having trouble fitting all your purchases into your bag? Altman sells top-of-the-line luggage from Rimowa, Samsonite, and Tumi at discount prices. A selection of watches and cosmetic bags are also for sale. | 135 Orchard St., between Delancey and Rivington sts., Lower East Side | 212/254–7275 | www.altmanluggage.com | Station: J, M, Z to Essex St.; F to Delancey St.
GREENWICH VILLAGE AND WEST VILLAGE
The Beats were born and raised in the Village, but today, the poets and have artists have long been replaced by New York University buildings and apartments with sky-high rent. There are still charmingly off-beat stores worth exploring here that retain the flavor of the glory days.
C. O. Bigelow.
Founded in 1838, this is the oldest apothecary-pharmacy in the United States; Mark Twain used to fill prescriptions here. They still fill prescriptions, but the real reason to come is for the hard-to-find-brands like Klorane shampoo and Elgydium toothpaste. Bigelow also has its own line of products, including green-tea lip balm and quince hand lotion. | 414 6th Ave., between 9th and 10th sts., Greenwich Village | 212/533–2700 | www.bigelowchemists.com | Station: A, B, C, D, E, F, M to W. 4th St.
Denim & Supply.
Owned by Ralph Lauren, this boutique has a rustic, utilitarian look, with distressed wood floors and plenty of Americana. Jeans, denim shirts and jackets are available in every hue along with T-shirts, dresses, and cargo pants. | 99 University Pl., between 11th and 12th sts., Greenwich Village | 212/677–1895 | www.denimandsupply.com | Station: 4, 5, 6, L, N, Q, R to 14th St.–Union Sq.
Fodor’s Choice | La Petite Coquette.
Everything at this lingerie store is unabashedly sexy, and the helpful staff can find the perfect fit. The store’s own line of corsets, camisoles, and other underpinnings comes in a range of colors. | 51 University Pl., between 9th and 10th sts., Greenwich Village | 212/473–2478 | www.thelittleflirt.com | Station: N, R to 8th St.–NYU.
Personnel of New York.
“Lifestyle boutique” is an overused term, but it is the best way to describe this indie favorite, which specializes in men’s and women’s clothing from New York and L.A. designers. The boutique also stocks unusual home goods, such as bottle openers by Japanese designer Tadanori Baba and soap from Juniper Ridge. | 9 Greenwich Ave., between Christopher and 10th sts., Greenwich Village | 212/924–0604 | www.personnelofnewyork.com | Station: 1 to Christopher St.–Sheridan Sq.; A, B, C, D, E, F, M to W. 4th St.
One of the most beautiful spots in New York, the West Village is filled with charming boutiques, restaurants, and bars—many of which have retained their vintage charm thanks to exposed brick walls and pressed tin ceilings. Stroll around, get lost on a cobblestone street, and finish a day of shopping with a drink at a cozy bar.
Bleecker Street is a particularly good place to indulge all sorts of shopping appetites. Foodies love the blocks between 6th and 7th avenues for the specialty purveyors like Murray’s Cheese (254 Bleecker St.). Fashion fans forage the stretch between West 10th Street and 8th Avenue. Hudson Street and Greenwich Avenue are also prime boutique-browsing territory. Christopher Street, true to its connection with the lesbian and gay community, has a handful of shops sporting rainbow flags.
Antiques and Collectibles
From the outside, this shop is beyond cute, thanks to its old-fashioned sign and sandwich board. The specialty here is decoupage that has been turned into quirky trays and paperweights. Owner Carol Kaas uses antique prints, vintage postcards, historical maps, and ephemera in her works and customizes decoupage trays from wedding invitations, photos, baby announcements, or other paper keepsakes. | 117 Perry St., between Greenwich and Hudson sts., West Village | 212/366–0322 | www.kaas.com | Station: 1 to Christopher St.–Sheridan Sq.
Fodor’s Choice | Aedes De Venustas.
Arguably the best place to buy fragrance in town, this boutique’s super-knowledgeable staff helps shoppers find the perfect scent. High-end brands like L’Artisan Parfumeur and Annick Goutal are stocked, along with luxurious skincare products, pricey candles, and room diffusers. The shop’s signature gift wrap is as beautiful as what’s inside the box. | 9 Christopher St., between 6th and 7th aves., West Village | 212/206–8674 | www.aedes.com | Station: 1 to Christopher St.–Sheridan Sq.
This crisp black and white boutique sets a serene backdrop to sample tangy scents like lime blossom and mandarin, or Earl Grey and cucumber. Fragrances can be worn alone or layered. The flagship gives complimentary hand massages (by appointment) and has a sampling bar to create a bespoke scent. | 330 Bleecker St., between 10th and Christopher sts., West Village | 212/242–1454 | www.jomalone.com | Station: 1 to Christopher St.–Sheridan Sq.
Books and Stationery
This small, independent bookstore is crammed with the latest new releases as well as a thoughtful assortment of general nonfiction, guidebooks, and children’s books. But when the weather cooperates, the real focus here is the carefully selected sale tables that spill out onto the sidewalk, with deals on everything from Graham Greene to Chuck Palahniuk. | 266 Bleecker St., between 6th and 7th aves., West Village | 212/807–8655 | www.bookbooknyc.com | Station: 1 to Christopher St.–Sheridan Sq.; A, B, C, D, E, F, M to W. 4th St.
Three Lives & Company.
One of the city’s best book selections is displayed on the tables and counters of this bookshop, which highlights the latest literary fiction and serious nonfiction, classics, quirky gift books, and gorgeously illustrated tomes. The staff members’ literary knowledge is formidable, so don’t be afraid to ask for their own picks. | 154 W. 10th St., at Waverly Pl., West Village | 212/741–2069 | www.threelives.com | Station:1 to Christopher St.–Sheridan Sq.
The new CAP Beauty is a one stop shop for natural skin care, which means that 100% of the products are free from synthetic ingredients. Brands carried include Elizabeth Dehn, Tata Harper and Ko Denmark. CAP also does spa treatments, facials, and acupuncture. | 238 W. 10th St., at Hudson St., West Village | 212/645–6572 | www.capbeauty.com | Station: 1 to Christopher St.–Sheridan Sq.
This boutique delivers flirty, whimsical dresses that are perfect for cocktail parties. To complete the look, throw on some of her colorful pumps and sharply tailored coats. | 376 Bleecker St., between Charles and Perry sts., West Village | 212/242–3803 | www.cynthiarowley.com | Station: 1 to Christopher St.–Sheridan Sq.
Fisch for the Hip.
This high-end consignment store sells carefully curated men’s and women’s clothing and accessories, from top designers including Tom Ford, Balenciaga, and Lanvin. Hermès bags are a specialty. | 90 7th Ave., between 15th and 16th sts., West Village | 212/633–6965 | www.fischforthehip.com | Station: A, C, E to 14th St.; L to 8th Ave.; 1 to 18th St.
This unprepossessing nook stocks some of the most elegant (and expensive) designers in the world, ranging from Alexander McQueen to Vivienne Westwood. If you have to ask how much an item costs, don’t try it on. | 378 Bleecker St., between Charles and Perry sts., West Village | 212/206–7475 | www.hotoveli.com | Station: 1 to Christopher St.–Sheridan Sq.
This former magazine editor now designs an elegant line of handbags, clutches, and accessories that are favorites among stars like Blake Lively and J. Lo. She uses luxury materials, including python, alligator, crocodile, and stingray skins. | 102 Charles St., between Hudson and Bleecker sts., West Village | 646/998–5240 | www.khirmaeliazov.com | Station: 1 to Christopher St.–Sheridan Square.
Food and Treats
What sets this chocolate emporium apart is minimalist design, which also turns up in the groovy packaging. Scoop up chocolate bars, whose flavors include salted caramel and milk Cheerios, or try a coffee cardamom truffle washed down with a steaming cup of spicy hot chocolate. | 19 8th Ave., between Jane and 12th sts., West Village | 917/388–3761 | www.chocolatebarnyc.com | Station: A, C, E, to 14th St.; L to 8th Ave.
Feeding the Village’s sweet tooth since 1923, Li-Lac indulges with almond bark and coconut clusters as well as such specialty items as chocolate-molded Statues of Liberty. The coconut rolls and chocolate-covered graham crackers tempt even the most stubborn dieter. To see how the small batch chocolates are made, visit Li-Lac’s Brooklyn factory. | 40 8th Ave., at Jane St., West Village | 212/924–2280 | www.li-lacchocolates.com | Station: A, C, E to 14th St.; L to 8th Ave.
Who knew Scandinavians were obsessed with candy? There’s much more than Swedish fish at this gleaming white candy emporium that stocks hard candies, gummies, licorice, and chocolate. Have fun pronouncing the names of treats like Bumlingar Jordgubb and Zoo Klubba. | 89 Christopher St., between Bleecker and 4th sts., West Village | 212/206–8170 | www.sockerbit.com | Station: 1 to Christopher St.–Sheridan Sq.
Shoes, Handbags, and Leather Goods
Fodor’s Choice | Flight 001.
Frequent flyers can one-stopshop at this travel-themed store that puts a creative spin on everyday accessories. Shop for bright luggage tags, passport holders, satin sleep masks, and innovative storage for everything from shoes to toiletries. | 96 Greenwich Ave., between 12th and Jane sts., West Village | 212/989–0001 | www.flight001.com | Station: 1, 2, 3 to 14th St.
Fodor’s Choice | Leffot.
This simple, understated store focuses on one thing: selling top-quality men’s shoes. Owner Steven Taffel, who previously worked at Prada, has stocked his shop with selections from John Lobb, Church’s and Edward Green. These shoes are meant to last a lifetime, and many have a price tag to match. Bespoke footwear is also available. | 10 Christopher St., at Gay St., West Village | 212/989–4577 | www.leffot.com | Station: 1 to Christopher St.–Sheridan Sq.; A, B, C, D, E, F, M to W. 4th St.
Hit this black-and-white-boutique for cheerfully eccentric accessories such as handbags printed with images of lips, dolls, and cameos. Other accessories, including umbrellas and luggage, are equally fun. | 394 Bleecker St., between 11th and Perry sts., West Village | 212/367–2120 | www.luluguinness.com | Station: 1 to Christopher St.–Sheridan Sq.
CHELSEA AND THE MEATPACKING DISTRICT
Chelsea offers one-stop shopping for some of the biggest retail brands.
Books and Stationery
Books of Wonder.
Readers young and old delight in Manhattan’s oldest and largest independent children’s bookstore. The friendly, knowledgeable staff can help select gifts for all reading levels. Don’t miss the extensive Oz section, plus the collection of old, rare, and collectible children’s books and original children’s book art. | 18 W. 18th St., between 5th and 6th aves., Chelsea | 212/989–3270 | www.booksofwonder.com | Station: F, M to 14th St.; L to 6th Ave.
Posman Books has an outstanding selection of contemporary and classic books across genres. Don’t miss the cheeky and serious high-quality greeting cards. | Chelsea Market, 75 9th Ave., between 15th and 16th sts., Chelsea | 212/627–0304 | www.posmanbooks.com | Station: A, C, E to 14th St.; L to 8th Ave.
Comme des Garçons.
The designs in this swoopy, gold-adorned space consistently push the fashion envelope with brash patterns, unlikely juxtapositions (tulle and neoprene), and cuts that are meant to be thought-provoking, not flattering. Architecture students come just for the interior design. | 520 W. 22nd St., between 10th and 11th aves., Chelsea | 212/604–9200 | www.comme-des-garcons.com | Station: C, E to 23rd St.
New York Vintage.
Stylists to the stars, TV costumers, and the deep-pocketed descend upon this boutique to browse racks of prime vintage clothing. Everything is high-end, so don’t expect any bargains. Take your pick from Yves Saint Laurent, Madame Grès, and Thierry Mugler items. There’s a good selection of handbags and stilettos, too. | 117 W. 25th St., between 6th and 7th aves., Chelsea | 212/647–1107 | www.newyorkvintage.com | Station: 1 to 28th St.
Fodor’s Choice | Story.
Launched by former consultant Rachel Shechtman, Story is a concept store with a twist. Every few weeks, it partners with a new sponsor to develop a retail “story,” like a magazine spread, which ranges from wearable tech to “home for the holidays.” Pop by often to admire the artful displays, and you never know what will be for sale, from chocolates to clothing and books. Story also hosts events such as talks with TED speakers. | 144 10th Ave., at 19th St., Chelsea | 212/242–4853 | www.thisisstory.com | Station: A, C, E to 14th St.; L to 8th Ave.
Gifts and Souvenirs
Take a bite out of the Big Apple—in cookie form—with these perfectly decorated treats, shaped like yellow cabs, the New York skyline, and police cars. It’s not just New York depicted here; the iced cookies come in every design imaginable, from iPhones to bottles of nail polish.Photos of loved ones can be transferred onto cupcakes—if you don’t mind taking a bite. | Chelsea Market, 75 9th Ave., between 15th and 16th sts.,Chelsea | 212/255–6804 | www.elenis.com | Station: A, C, E to 14th St.; L to 8th Ave.
Music Stores and Media
Jazz Record Center.
If you’re seeking rare or out-of-print jazz recordings, this is your one-stop shop. Long-lost Ellingtons and other rare pressings come to light here; the jazz-record specialist also stocks books, collectibles, DVDs, posters, CDs, and LPs. | 236 W. 26th St., 8th fl., between 7th and 8th aves., Chelsea | 212/675–4480 | www.jazzrecordcenter.com | Station: 1 to 28th St.
Bottlerocket Wine & Spirit.
Fun and approachable, this shop puts a new spin on wine shopping. Vintages are organized by quirky factors like their compatibility with Chinese takeout and whom they’d best suit as gifts (ranging from “Third Date” to “The Boss”). A kids’ play nook and doggie area make the space extra-welcoming. | 5 W. 19th St., between 5th and 6th aves., Chelsea | 212/929–2323 | www.bottlerocketwine.com | Station: 4, 5, 6, L, N, Q, R to 14th St.–Union Sq.
For nearly a century, the industrial western edge of downtown Manhattan was defined by slaughterhouses and meatpacking plants, blood-splattered cobblestone streets, and men lugging carcasses into warehouses before dawn.
But in the late 1990s the area bounded by 14th Street, Gansevoort Street, Hudson Street, and 11th Avenue speedily transformed into another kind of meat market. Many of the old warehouses now house ultra-chic shops, nightclubs, and restaurants packed with angular fashionistas. Jeffrey, a pint-size department store, was an early arrival, followed by bigger brands such as Diane von Furstenberg and a few lofty furniture stores. Despite the influx of a few chains—albeit stylish ones like Scoop—eclectic boutiques keep popping up. The one thing that’s hard to find here is a bargain.
Cameras and Electronics
Apple Store. Branch location at 401 West 14th Street. See Midtown East for full review.
Celebs like Halle Berry love this French-born designer for her sexy-without-trying-too-hard looks. Shop for silk V-neck gowns or one-shouldered ruched wool dresses. | 652 Hudson St., at 13th St., Meatpacking District | 212/929–8710 | www.catherinemalandrino.com | Station: A, C, E to 14th St.; L to 8th Ave.
Fodor’s Choice | Diane von Furstenberg.
At this light-filled New York flagship, try on the iconic DVF wrap dress in myriad patterns. The blouses, shorts, and skirts are equally feminine. | 874 Washington St., at 14th St., Meatpacking District | 646/486–4800 | www.dvf.com | Station: A, C, E to 14th St.; L to 8th Ave.
The Meatpacking District really arrived when this Atlanta-based mini-Barneys opened its doors. You can find an incredible array of designer shoes—Valentino and red-soled Christian Louboutin are some of the best sellers—plus top labels such as Yves Saint Laurent and Lanvin. | 449 W. 14th St., between 9th and 10th aves., Meatpacking District | 212/206–1272 | www.jeffreynewyork.com | Station: A, C, E to 14th St.; L to 8th Ave.
Fashion Institute of Technology grad Phillip Salem transformed this space into a whimsical place to shop, thanks to the 25,000 paper bags that line the arched ceiling. This upscale boutique sells men’s and women’s wear from 70 established and independent designers. Come here for skinny jeans, luxurious sweaters, and dresses from J. Brand, Garter+Derringer, and Roksanda Ilincic. | 809 Washington St., between Gansevoort and Horatio sts., Meatpacking District | 212/524–9770 | www.owennyc.com | Station: A, C, E to 14th St.; L to 8th Ave.
This designer is known for her soft, feminine work, which runs the gamut from sexy to understated, all with a slightly vintage flair. Taylor’s downtown location is a serene, spacious environment for browsing racks of silky shirtdresses, embroidered tunics, and ruffled overcoats. Her shoes, handbags, and jewelry are equally romantic. | 34 Gansevoort St., between Greenwich and Hudson sts., Meatpacking District | 212/243–2600 | www.rebeccataylor.com | Station: A, C, E to 14th St.; L to 8th Ave.
Make a bee-line to this boutique if you like bright, happy colors and 1970’s-influenced clothing. The shop, designed by Jonathan Adler, showcases Turk’s ready-to-wear clothing in a bright, airy setting. Swimwear is a standout, and menswear is also sold here. | 67 Gansevoort St., between Washington and Greenwich sts., Meatpacking District | 212/206–7383 | www.trinaturk.com | Station: A, C, E to 14th St.; L to 8th Ave.
Jewelry and Accessories
Ten Thousand Things.
You might find yourself wishing for 10,000 things from the showcases in this elegant boutique. Designs run from delicate gold and silver chains to long Peruvian opal earrings. Many shapes are abstract reflections of natural forms, like twigs or seedpods. Prices start around $180 but quickly rise. | 423 W. 14th St., between 9th and 10th aves., Meatpacking District | 212/352–1333 | www.tenthousandthingsnyc.com | Station: A, C, E to 14th St.; L to 8th Ave.
UNION SQUARE AND THE FLATIRON DISTRICT
The several blocks around Union Square—which itself is home to the city’s best greenmarket, and a holiday market leading up to Christmas—is a bit south of the Flatiron District and has large retail chains such as LuLu Lemon, J.Crew, Banana Republic, and Anthropologie
Long a beauty favorite, with ingredients that are good enough to eat (think brown sugar, soy, and black tea), the Fresh flagship has an apothecary-inspired look, with beautifully packaged soaps displayed like pastries in a glass case. Pull up a seat at the communal Kitchen Table to try out a new product. | 872 Broadway, between 18th and 19th sts., Union Square | 212/477–1100 | www.fresh.com | Station: 4, 5, 6, L, N, Q, R to 14th St.–Union Sq.
Books and Stationery
Fodor’s Choice | The Strand.
Opened in 1927, and still run by the same family, this monstrous book emporium—home to 2 million volumes,or “18 Miles of Books”—is a symbol of a bygone era, a mecca for serious bibliophiles, and a local institution. The store has survived the Great Depression, World War II, competition from Barnes & Noble, and the Kindle. The stock includes new and secondhand books, plus thousands of collector’s items and merchandise. A separate rare-book room is on the third floor (it closes at 6:15 daily). The basement has discounted, barely touched review copies of new books, organized by author. If you’re looking for souvenirs, visit the New York section of the bookstore for New York–centric literature, poetry, and cookbooks, as well as T-shirts and totes. Visitors should also check the Strand’s events calendar and try to attend an author or artist event. Headliners have ranged from Anne Rice to James Franco. | 828 Broadway, at 12th St., Union Square | 212/473–1452 | www.strandbooks.com | Station: 4, 5, 6, L, N, Q, R to 14th St.–Union Sq.
Brooklyn favorite Beacon’s Closet now has a Big Apple outpost. This simple space, which is lit by multiple chandeliers, has a wide selection of gently used modern and vintage clothes. Comb through the racks and you might find pieces from Christian Dior, Marc Jacobs, or AllSaints as well as stylish items from under-the-radar labels. | 10 W. 13th St., between 5th and 6th aves., Union Square | 917/261–4863 | www.beaconscloset.com | Station: 4, 5, 6, L, N, Q, R to 14th St.–Union Sq.
Forever 21. Branch location at 40 East 14th Street.
This preppy-chic staple in so many people’s closets continues to push the envelope under superstar Jenna Lyons. Yes, you can still get cardigans, cords, and tees in every pastel color of the rainbow, but the clothes today are sometimes downright sexy. The leather jackets and sequined skirts are also perfect for that casual, thrown-together look. This flagship carries women’s, men’s, and Crewcuts for children as well as a wedding gown collection. | 91 5th Ave., between 15th and 16th sts., Union Square | 212/255–4848 | www.jcrew.com | Station: 4, 5, 6, L, N, Q, R to 14th St.–Union Sq.
Food and Wine
Fodor’s Choice | Max Brenner: Chocolate by the Bald Man.
This shop and restaurant is all about a Wonka-ish sense of entertainment. The café encourages the messy enjoyment of gooey creations like chocolate pizzas for kids, but there are also savory options to soak up all that sugar. Take-away treats include caramelized pralines and tins of hot-chocolate mix. | 841 Broadway, between 13th and 14th sts., Union Square | 646/467–8803 | www.maxbrenner.com | Station: 4, 5, 6, L, N, Q, R to 14th St.–Union Sq.
Fodor’s Choice | Union Square Wine & Spirits.
Tastings are easy at this well-stocked store, thanks to Enomatic machines. These card-operated contraptions let you sample dozens of wines. If machines don’t do it for you, generous tastings are held most Fridays and Saturdays. | 140 4th Ave., at 13th St., East Village | 212/675–8100 | www.unionsquarewines.com | Station: 4, 5, 6, L, N, Q, R to 14th St.–Union Sq.
Fodor’s Choice | ABC Carpet & Home.
If you love eclectic goods from around the world, this is your place. Spread over 10 floors is a superb selection of rugs, antiques, textiles, furniture, and bedding, including sleek sofas and Balinese daybeds. The ground floor is a wonderland of silk pillows and jewelry. To refuel, there’s an in-house restaurant from Jean-Georges Vongerichten. More rugs and carpets are unrolled across the street at 881 Broadway. | 888 Broadway, at 19th St., Union Square | 212/473–3000 | www.abchome.com | Station: 4, 5, 6, L, N, Q, R to 14th St.–Union Sq.
Jewelry and Accessories
Beads of Paradise.
Not your ordinary bead store, the baubles here are sourced from around the world. Shoppers can choose silver from Bali and Mexico and ancient glass beads from China, along with semiprecious stones. Sign up for a class to learn how to put it all together. | 16 E. 17th St., between 5th Ave. and Broadway, Union Square | 212/620–0642 | www.beadsofparadisenyc.com | Station: 4, 5, 6, L, N, Q, R to 14th St.–Union Sq.
The Flatiron District, north of Union Square, stretches from about 17th Street up to 29th Street, and us between 6th Avenue and Lexington, This is one of the buzziest areas in New York, brimming with both large and small stores. Come here if you want to shop the big chains minus the Midtown tourist crowds.
Books and Stationery
Named for the pre-1960’s JFK Airport, this travel-inspired bookstore is one of the last of its kind in America. They stock guidebooks, novels, and children’s books grouped by destination, and also run foreign-language classes, ranging from Arabic to German. If those chairs look familiar, it may be because you huddled in one during a layover at the American Airlines terminal. | 12 W. 19th St., 2nd fl., at 5th Ave.,Flatiron District | 212/414–8888 | www.idlewildbooks.com | Station: 4, 5, 6, L, N, Q, R to 14th St.–Union Sq.
The funky (Elvis-print rompers, CBGB onesies) mixes with the old-school (retro cowboy-print pants, brightly colored clogs, Bruce Lee T-shirts) and the high-end (Lili Gaufrette, Kenzo, Boo Foo Woo from Japan) at this casual, trendsetting store. | 26 E. 22nd St., between Broadway and Park Ave., Flatiron District | 212/420–9878 | www.spacekiddets.com | Station: 6 to 23rd St.
Bohemian-chic is the aesthetic of this popular women’s clothing and home accessories chain. | 85 5th Ave., Flatiron District | 212/627–5885 | www.anthropologie.com | Station: 4, 5, 6, L, N, Q, R to 14th St.–Union Sq.
In addition to the brand’s signature clothing (think of a hipper Banana Republic), this flagship includes an outpost of Williamsburg favorite Toby’s Estate Coffee, as well as a bookstore operated by the Strand. | 160 5th Ave., between 20th and 21st sts., Flatiron District | 212/352–0936 | www.clubmonaco.com | Station: N, R to 23rd St.
This J.Crew spinoff is ideal for casual women’s staples like jeans, t-shirts, and sweaters with a vintage look. The two-story Manhattan flagship has a quirky, homespun design; merchandise is displayed on everything from old mill tables to meat hooks. Don’t miss the shoe shop and home goods collection. | 115 5th Ave., between 18th and 19th sts., Flatiron District | 212/228–5172 | www.madewell.com | Station: 4, 5, 6, L, N, Q, R to 14th St.–Union Sq.
Fodor’s Choice | Maison Kitsuné.
This decades-old French fashion and music label made its stateside debut in this airy, sunwashed boutique for men’s and womenswear classics with a stylish Gallic twist, ranging from cardigans and loafers to blazers and dresses. | NoMad Hotel, 1170 Broadway, at 28th St., Flatiron District | 212/481–6010 | www.kitsune.fr | Station: N, R to 28th St.
NYC Holiday Markets
Between Thanksgiving and Christmas, holiday markets—rows of wooden stalls, many with red-and-white-stripe awnings—spring up around town. The gifts and goods vary from year to year, but there are some perennial offerings: colorful handmade knitwear and jewelry; sweet-smelling soaps, candles, and lotions with hand-lettered labels; glittery Christmas ornaments of every stripe; and New York–theme gift items (a group called Gritty City sell T-shirts, coin purses, and undies printed with pictures of taxicabs and manhole covers).
While the holiday market in Grand Central Terminal’s Vanderbilt Hall is indoors, most vendors set up outside. There’s one every year at Columbus Circle, near the southwest entrance to Central Park, and another at Bryant Park, behind the New York City Public Library. The largest and most popular, however, is at the south end of Union Square, where you can go from the greenmarket to the stalls, just like the downtowners who meet in the afternoon or after work to look for unique or last-minute gifts.
Fodor’s Choice | Fishs Eddy.
The dishes, china, and glassware for resale come from all walks of crockery life, including corporate dining rooms and failed restaurants, so you never know what you might find. Fishs Eddy also sell their own line of dishes, which has a classic look. The shop is a great place to pick up New York–themed gifts, such as mugs and trays. | 889 Broadway, at 19th St., Flatiron District | 212/420–9020 | www.fishseddy.com | Station: 4, 5, 6, L, N, Q, R to 14th St.–Union Sq.
If you love bright, cheerful patterns, make a beeline to the Marimekko flagship. This 4,000-square-foot store is primarily white, so the colorful merchandise pops. Everything from pot holders and shower curtains to coats and dresses is available here in the bold signtaure Marimekko prints. If feeling crafty, pick up a few yards of fabric to create something of your own. | 200 5th Ave., between 23rd and 24th sts., Flatiron District | 212/843–9121 | www.marimekko.com | Station: N, R to 23rd St.
This independent shop is piled high with old-fashioned wooden toys, sturdy musical instruments, and plenty of arts-and-crafts materials. The costume racks are rich with dress-up potential. | 60 W. 15th St., between 5th and 6th aves., Flatiron District | 212/645–6337 | www.kiddingaroundtoys.com | Station: F, M to 14th St.; 4, 5, 6, L, N, Q, R to 14th St.–Union Sq.
If money is no object, put on your best shopping shoes and most glamorous sunglasses and head to Midtown East. Some of the world’s most luxurious brands—from Gucci to Christian Dior—have their flagship stores along 5th Avenue. All the stores on 5th Avenue are included in Midtown East, although some might be on the west side of the street and have West in their address.
Antiques and Collectibles
A La Vieille Russie.
Antiques dealers since 1851, this shop specializes in European and Russian decorative arts, jewelry, and paintings. Behold bibelots by Fabergé and others, enameled or encrusted with jewels. If money is no object, there are also antique diamond necklaces and pieces of china once owned by Russian nobility. | 781 5th Ave., at 59th St., Midtown East | 212/752–1727 | www.alvr.com | Station: N, Q, R to 5th Ave./59th St.
The Chinese Porcelain Company.
Though the name of this prestigious shop indicates one of its specialties, its stock covers more ground, ranging from lacquerware to Khmer sculpture as well as work by contemporary Chinese artists. | 475 Park Ave., at 58th St., Midtown East | 212/838–7744 | www.chineseporcelainco.com | Station: 4, 5, 6 to 59th St.; N, Q, R to Lexington Ave./59th St.
Flying Cranes Antiques.
At this world leader in Japanese antiques, shoppers find rare, museum-quality pieces from the Meiji period, Japan’s Golden Age. Items include ceramics, cloisonné, metalwork, baskets, and samurai swords and fittings. | Manhattan Art and Antiques Center, 1050 2nd Ave., between 55th and 56th sts., Midtown East | 212/223–4600 | www.flyingcranesantiques.com | Station: E, M to Lexington Ave./53rd St.
Leo Kaplan Ltd.
The impeccable items here include Art Nouveau glass and pottery, porcelain from 18th-century England, antique and modern paperweights, and Russian art. | 114 E. 57th St., between Park and Lexington aves.,Midtown East | 212/355–7212 | www.leokaplan.com | Station: 4, 5, 6 to 59th St.; N, Q, R to Lexington Ave./59th St.
Newel Art Galleries.
Housed in a renovated six-story building, this huge collection spans the Renaissance through the 20th century. The nonfurniture finds, from figureheads to bell jars, make for prime conversation pieces. Newel is a major supplier of antiques for Broadway showsand luxury department store windows. | 425 E. 53rd St., between 1st Ave. and Sutton Pl., Midtown East | 212/758–1970 | www.newel.com | Station: E, M to Lexington Ave./53rd St.
Books and Stationery
Fodor’s Choice | Argosy Bookstore.
Family owned since 1925, Argosy is a charmingly old-fashioned place to browse for both bargain and priceless books. The shop keeps a scholarly stock of rare books and autographs. It’s also a great place find low-price maps and prints for gifts. | 116 E. 59th St., between Park and Lexington aves., Midtown East | 212/753–4455 | www.argosybooks.com | Station: 4, 5, 6 to 59th St.; N, Q, R to Lexington Ave./59th St.
A mecca forthose who love role-playing games,this shop stocks board games and classic soldier sets,as well as fantasy games. | 11 E. 33rd St., between 5th and Madison Aves., Midtown East | 212/685–3880 | www.thecompleatstrategist.com | Station: 6 to 33rd St.
Cameras and Electronics
Fodor’s Choice | Apple Store.
New York’s flagship Apple Store features a 32-foot-high glass cube that appears to float over its subterranean entrance. The Apple-obsessed will be happy to know this location is open 24/7, holidays included. Make an appointment at the Genius Bar if you need tech help. | 767 5th Ave., between 58th and 59th sts., Midtown East | 212/336–1440 | www.apple.com | Station: N, Q, R to 5th Ave./59th St.
Located on the ground floor of the Sony Building, this sunny space is a wonderland of electronics, with all the latest home-theater equipment, cameras, tablets, and smartphones. | 550 Madison Ave., at 55th St.,Midtown East | 212/833–8800 | www.store.sony.com | Station: E, M to 5th Ave./53rd St.
Abercrombie & Fitch.
This brand is known for its casual preppy clothes for men, women, and kids—but brace yourself for the thumping club music and dim lighting. | 720 5th Ave., Midtown East | 212/306–0936 | www.abercrombie.com | Station: F to 57th St.; N, Q, R to 5th Ave./59th St.
Although there are nearly a dozen Banana Republic stores around the city, come to the flagship for the biggest selection of clothing. Don’t miss the Heritage collection or the big clearance racks. | Rockefeller Center, 626 5th Ave., at 51st St., Midtown East | 212/974–2350 | www.bananarepublic.gap.com | Station: B, D, F, M to 47th–50th Sts./Rockefeller Center; E, M to 5th Ave./53rd St.
The clothes at this classic American haberdasher are, as ever, traditional, comfortable, and fairly priced. Summer seersucker, navy-blue blazers, and the peerless oxford shirts have been staples for generations; the women’s and boys’ selections have variations thereon. Get scanned by a digital tailor for precisely measured custom shirts or suits; an appointmentis recommended. | 346 Madison Ave., at 44th St., Midtown East | 212/682–8800 | www.brooksbrothers.com | Station: 4, 5, 6, 7, S to Grand Central–42nd. St.
This six-story glass-and-stone flagship is a temple to all things plaid, British, and Cara Delevingne. The iconic trench coat can be madetomeasure here, and the signature plaid can be found on bikinis, scarves, and wallets. For children, there are miniversions of quilted jackets and cozy sweaters. | 9 E. 57th St., between 5th and Madison aves., Midtown East | 212/407–7100 | www.us.burberry.com | Station: N, Q, R to 5th Ave./59th St.
The Midtown flagship has often been compared to a Chanel suit—slim, elegant, timeless, and decorated in the signature black-and-white colors. Come here for the iconic suits and quilted handbags, along with other pillars of Chanel style: chic little black dresses, evening gowns, and yards of pearls. There’s also acosmetics area where you can stock up on the famed scents and nail polish. | 15 E. 57th St., between 5th and Madison aves., Midtown East | 212/355–5050 | www.chanel.com | Station: N, Q, R to 5th Ave./59th St.
This very white, very glossy space sets a serene background to showcase the luxe ready-to-wear collection along with handbags and accessories. If you’re not in the market for an investment gown or fine jewelry, peruse the latest status bag. The Dior menswear boutique is next door; the cigarette-thin suits are often snapped up by women. | 21 57th St., at Madison Ave., Midtown East | 212/931–2950 | www.dior.com | Station: N, Q, R to 5th Ave./59th St.
Fodor’s Choice | Dover Street Market.
The New York location is the only U.S. outpost of Rei Kawakubo’s Dover Street Market (the others are in London, Tokyo and Beijing). It’s basically a multilevel fashion-store emporium: each floor has miniboutiques from brands including Prada, Alaïa, and Alexander Wang alongside lesser-known designers. The seven-story building is worth a look just for people-watching. The in-house Rose Bakery is the perfect spot to refuel with an espresso or iced pound cake. | 160 Lexington Ave., at 30th St., Midtown East | 646/837–7750 | newyork.doverstreetmarket.com | Station: 6 to 33rd St.
Fodor’s Choice | Dunhill.
If you’re stumped on what to buy the man in your life, head to Dunhill. The menswear is exquisitely tailored, and the accessories, like wallets and cufflinks, are somewhat affordable. The walk-in humidor stores top-quality tobacco and cigars. | 545 Madison Ave., at 55th St., Midtown East | 212/753–9292 | www.dunhill.com | Station: E, M to 5th Ave./53rd St.
The architecture here, with its marble floor and glittering chandeliers, provides the perfect backdrop for the outrageous designs and colors of Versace clothes. The brand’s housewares and bedding collection are also available here. | 647 5th Ave., near 51st St., Midtown East | 212/317–0224 | www.versace.com | Station: E, M to 5th Ave./53rd St.
Located in the Trump Building, this 46,000-square-foot flagship with floor-to-ceiling glass windows is the largest Gucci store in the world. Here, shoppers find a special “heritage” department, plus goods exclusive to the store. The clothing is edgy and sexy. Skintight pants might be paired with a luxe leather jacket; silk tops leave a little more to the imagination. Many of the accessories, like wraparound shades or snakeskin shoes, have Gucci’s signature horsebit detailing. | 725 5th Ave., at 56th St., Midtown East | 212/826–2600 | www.gucci.com | Station: N, Q, R to 5th Ave./59th St.
Of-the-moment trends are packaged for the mass market at this affordable Swedish clothing chain, which has numerous stores in the city. H&M has collaborated with many designers, including Karl Lagerfeld and Isabel Marant. | 640 5th Ave., between 51st and 52nd sts., Midtown East | 212/489–0390 | www.hm.com | Station: E, M to 5th Ave./53rd St.
Think of this brand as the Canadian version of H&M crossed with the Gap, selling stylish but classic clothes for men and women at affordable prices. The New York flagship stocks everything from sweaters and denim to button-down shirts and shoes in a rainbow of colors. Just about all items are under $100. | 510 5th Ave., between 42nd and 43rd sts., Midtown East | 212/764–1730 | www.joefresh.com | Station: 7 to 5th Ave.
Owned by Zara, think of this brand as its older, more sophisticated sibling. The three-story space specializes in sleek basics that are perfect for work or the weekends, such as blazers, trench coats, and silky sweaters. | 689 5th Ave., between 54th and 55th sts., Midtown East | 212/371–2555 | www.massimodutti.com | Station: E, M to 5th Ave./53rd St.
The global flagship oozes old-school Americana, with its dark-wood paneling, shirts displayed on bookshelves, and scattering of antiques. It’s filled with tailored suits for men, smart sweater sets and pencil skirts for women, and evening wear along with sportswear, plus a whole floor devoted to denim. | 681 5th Ave., at 54th St., Midtown East | 212/223–1824 | usa.tommy.com | Station: E, M to 5th Ave./53rd St.
At 89,000 square feet, this location is the biggest UNIQLO in the world (there are also branches in SoHo and near Herald Square). Shoppers can scoop up staples such as sweaters, skinny jeans, and button-down shirts in a rainbow of colors. Don’t miss the limited edition collaborations with big-name designers and stylists. The Heattech clothing range is always a big hit. Weekday mornings are the best time to avoid long lines for the dressing rooms. | 666 5th Ave., between 52nd and 53rd sts., Midtown East | 877/486-4756 | www.uniqlo.com | Station: E, M to 5th Ave./53rd St.
This massive store is one of Zara’s biggest in the U.S. and the place to come for affordable, stylish fashion. New merchandise arrives twice a week and ranges from classics like blazers to edgier skinny trousers. There are also two lounge areas, in case you need a shopping break. | 666 5th Ave., between 52nd and 53rd sts., Midtown East | 212/765–0477 | www.zara.com | Station: E, M to 5th Ave./53rd St.
This luxury department store is the ultimate shopping destination, offering ladies (and men) who lunch designer clothes, a stellar shoe department, and top-notch service. The fifth floor is where to go for contemporary lines. The range of products in the beauty department is unparalled, and shoppers can complete their look with highlights at the in-house John Barrett salon. If you need to refuel, grab a bite at the seventh-floor BG Restaurant, with Central Park views, or a quick bite at the beauty-level Good Dish. | 754 5th Ave., between 57th and 58th sts., Midtown East | 212/753–7300 | www.bergdorfgoodman.com | Station: N, Q, R to 5th Ave./59th. St.
Fodor’s Choice | Bloomingdale’s.
Only a few stores in New York occupy an entire city block; the uptown branch of this New York institution is one of them. The main floor is a crazy, glittery maze of mirrored cosmetic counters and perfume-spraying salespeople. Once you get past this dizzying scene, you can find good buys on designer clothes, bedding, and housewares. | 1000 3rd Ave., main entrance at 59th St. and Lexington Ave., Midtown East | 212/705–2000 | bloomingdales.com | Station: 4, 5, 6 to 59th St.; N, Q, R to Lexington Ave./59th St.
Behind the graceful Lalique windows, discover a world of luxe accessories, all from Henri Bendel’s own collection. Work your way through two floors of jewelry, scarves, handbags, and sunglasses. If you really want to pamper yourself, visit Frédéric Fekkai’s hair salon on the fourth floor. | 712 5th Ave., between 55th and 56th sts., Midtown East | 212/247–1100 | www.henribendel.com | Station: E, M to 5th Ave./53rd St.
Lord & Taylor.
This is not your mother’s Lord & Taylor. The department store has been working hard to attract a younger, hipper crowd. Shoppers find classic brands like Coach and Ralph Lauren along with skinny jeans from Seven for All Mankind and Trina Turk tops. Don’t miss the lovely ground-floor beauty department. Best of all, it isn’t nearly as crowded as competitor Macy’s. | 424 5th Ave., between 38th and 39th sts., Midtown East | 212/391–3344 | www.lordandtaylor.com | Station: B, D, F, M, N, Q, R to 34th St.–Herald Sq.
Saks Fifth Avenue.
This iconic store has been upping its fashion stakes and revamping its résumé, by adding more contemporary lines such as Proenza Schouler and Victoria Beckham. The department store now has a designer sneaker shop, as well as an enormous Christian Louboutin shop-within-a-shop. The ground-floor beauty department stocks everything from the classics to the edgy. | 611 5th Ave., between 49th and 50th sts.,Midtown East | 212/753–4000 | www.saksfifthavenue.com | Station: E, M to 5th Ave./53rd St.
Gifts and Souvenirs
New York City Transit Museum Gift Shop.
Located in the symbolic heart of New York City’s transit system, the store features an eclectic array of merchandise all linked to the MTA (Metropolitan Transportation Authority), from straphanger ties to earrings made from old subway tokens. | Grand Central Terminal, Vanderbilt Pl. and 42nd St., Midtown East | 212/878–0106 | www.transitmuseumstore.com | Station: 4, 5, 6, 7, S to Grand Central–42nd St.
In keeping with the Armani aesthetic, the minimalist furniture and housewares here have a subdued color scheme (gold, gray, cream, and black). Big-ticket items include luxuriously upholstered sofas and sleek coffee tables. The desk accessories and throw pillows are equally understated. | Decoration & Design Building, 979 3rd Ave., Suite 1424, between 58th and 59th sts., Midtown East | 212/334–1271 | www.armanicasa.com | Station: 4, 5, 6 to 59th St.; N, Q, R to Lexington Ave./59th St.
Jewelry and Accessories
This Italian company is certainly not shy about its name, which encircles gems, watch faces, and an ever-growing accessories line. There are beautiful, weighty rings and other pieces mixing gold with stainless steel, porcelain, and the brand’s signature cabochon multicolored sapphires. Wedding and engagement rings are slightly more subdued. | 730 5th Ave., at 57th St., Midtown East | 212/315–9000 | www.bulgari.com | Station: N, Q, R to 5th Ave./59th St.
Established in 1914, this legendary French jeweler, and firm favorite among royals and celebrities, is the place to come for exquisite engagement rings, luxury watches, or cufflinks. Cartier’s iconic designs include the panther motif, the Trinity ring, and Tank watches. | 767 5th Ave., between 58th and 59th sts., Midtown East | 212/457–3202 | www.cartier.com | Station: N, Q, R to 5th Ave./59th St..
Sleek designs pose in an equally modern 5th Avenue setting; smooth cabochon-cut stones, most from South America, glow in pale wooden display cases. The designers make notable use of semiprecious stones such as citrine, tourmaline, and topaz. | 645 5th Ave., between 51st and 52nd sts., Midtown East | 212/655–3910 | www.hstern.net | Station: E, M to 5th Ave./53rd St.
These jewels regularly adorn celebs at the Oscars, and you need an A-list bank account to shop here. The ice-clear diamonds are of impeccable qualityand set in everything from emerald-cut solitaire rings to wreath necklaces resembling strings of flowers. No wonder the jeweler was immortalized in the song “Diamonds Are a Girl’s Best Friend.”|718 5th Ave., at 56th St., Midtown East | 212/399–1000 | www.harrywinston.com | Station: F to 57th St.; N, Q, R to 5th Ave./59th St.
The Japanese originator of the cultured pearl, Mikimoto presents a glowing display of high-luster pearls. Besides the creamy strands from their own pearl farms, check out diamond-and-pearl earrings, bracelets, and rings. | 730 5th Ave., between 56th and 57th sts., Midtown East | 212/457–4600 | www.mikimotoamerica.com | Station: F to 57th St.; N, Q, R to 5th Ave./59th St.
Fodor’s Choice | Tiffany & Co.
It’s hard to think of a more iconic New York jewelry store than Tiffany, along with its unmistakable blue box. Daydream among the displays of platinum-and-diamond bracelets and massive engagement rings, but head to the sterling-silver floor for more affordable baubles. The new Tiffany T line is streamlined and modern. | 727 5th Ave., at 57th St., Midtown East | 212/755–8000 | www.tiffany.com | Station: N, Q, R to 5th Ave./59th St.
Van Cleef & Arpels.
This French jewelry company is considerably more low-key than many of its blingy neighbors, in both design and marketing ethos (you won’t see them opening a store in your average mall). Their best-known design is the cloverleaf Alhambra, which can be found on rings, necklaces, and earrings. | 744 5th Ave., between 57th and 58th sts., Midtown East | 212/644–9500 | www.vancleef-arpels.com | Station: N, Q, R to 5th Ave./59th St.
Shoes, Handbags, and Leather Goods
If you want to channel your inner princess, you can’t go wrong with the ladylike pumps and high-heeled boots here. The accessories and clothing are equally tasteful. | 628 Madison Ave., at 59th St., Midtown East | 212/751–9082 | www.bally.com | Station: N, Q, R to 5th Ave./59th St.
The signature crosshatch weave graces leather handbags, slouchy satchels, and shoes; the especially satisfying brown shades extend from fawn to deep chocolate. The stylish men’s and women’s ready-to-wear collection is also sold here. | 699 5th Ave., between 54th and 55th sts., Midtown East | 212/371–5511 | www.bottegaveneta.com | Station: 4, 5, 6 to 59th St.; N, Q, R to Lexington Ave./59th St.; E, M to 5th Ave./53rd St.
Department Store Discounts in New York City
If you don’t have one of these stores in the state where you live, take advantage of special discounts available by showing a state ID card.
Bloomingdale’s: Go to the visitor center on the balcony level between the ground and second floors for a 10% discount on all purchases bought that day.
Lord & Taylor: Hit the ground-floor information desk to pick up a coupon for 15% off that day’s purchases.
Macy’s: Stop by the visitor center on the balcony level between the ground and second floors for a 10% discount voucher. The coupon is valid for five days for U.S. visitors and one month for international visitors.
This brand is known for its comfortable but stylish footwear—many shoes have Nike Air cushioning in the heel. Everything from sandals to boots and pumps is available. | 620 5th Ave., between 49th and 50th sts., Midtown East | 212/765–9747 | www.colehaan.com | Station: E, M to 5th Ave./53rd St.
Once known for its furs, Fendi is now synonymous with decadent handbags. The purses are beaded, embroidered, and fantastically embellished within an inch of their lives. Buttery soft leathers, ladylike evening dresses, structured handbags, and other accessories are also available. | 677 5th Ave., between 53rd and 54th sts., Midtown East | 212/759–4646 | www.fendi.com | Station: E, M to 5th Ave./53rd St.
Don’t come here expecting sexy, skyscraper stilettos. This Italian leather goods company excels at classic shoes. Riding boots are among the most popular items, but there are also pumps, loafers, and slouchy ankle boots. Men can choose from oxfords and boots. There’s also a line of leather handbags. | 625 Madison Ave., between E. 58th and E. 59th Sts., Midtown East | 212/888–5107 | www.fratellirossetti.com | Station: N, R, Q, 5th Ave./59th St.; 4, 5, 6 to 59th St.
Fodor’s Choice | Louis Vuitton.
In the mammoth 57th Street flagship, shoppers get their fill of LV-emblazoned handbags and accessories, as well as the more subtle Damier check pattern and colorful striated leathers. The clothes and shoeshere are devastatingly chic. | 1 E. 57th St., at 5th Ave., Midtown East | 212/758–8877 | www.louisvuitton.com | Station: N, Q, R to 5th Ave./59th St.
Elegance and restraint typify these designs, from patent leather ballet flats to weekender ankle boots. The company rework some of their women’s styles from previous decades, like the girlish Audrey (as in Hepburn) ballet flat, released seasonally for limited runs. Don’t miss the silk ties for men. | 655 5th Ave., at 52nd St., Midtown East | 212/759–3822 | www.ferragamo.com | Station: E, M to 5th Ave./53rd St.
The broad range of styles, from wingtips to strappy sandals, is enhanced by an even wider range of sizes and widths. Bridal shoes are hugely popular, if pricey. | 625 Madison Ave., between 58th and 59th sts.,Midtown East | 212/750–2555 | www.stuartweitzman.com | Station: N, Q, R to 5th Ave./59th St.; 4, 5, 6 to 59th St.
American Girl Place.
Grade school kids are crazy for American Girl dolls, whose line ranges from historically accurate characters to contemporary girls with all the accompanying clothes and accessories. Bring your doll here for a doll hairdressing station, café, and Dress Like Your Doll shop. | 609 5th Ave., at 49th St., Midtown East | 212/371–2220 | www.americangirl.com | Station: B, D, F, M to 47th–50th Sts./Rockefeller Center.
Whether you’re window-shopping or have money to burn, Midtown West includes some of the best (and priciest) department stores, including Bergdorf Goodman and Henri Bendel.
Cameras and Electronics
B&H Photo & Video.
Low prices, good customer service, and a liberal returns policy make this a favorite with pros and amateurs alike looking for audio and video equipment, new cameras, or a laptop. Be sure to leave a few extra minutes for the checkout procedure; also, keep in mind that the store is closed Saturday. B&H is also known for its ceiling-height conveyor belt system to move packages. | 420 9th Ave., between 33rd and 34th sts., Midtown West | 212/444–6615 | www.bhphotovideo.com | Station: 1, 2, 3, A, C, E to 34th St.–Penn Station.
The pounding music, plethora of jeggings, and graffiti-covered NYC taxicabs parked inside appeal to tween shoppers. But even if you are older than 21, there’s still reason to shop here. This location, clocking in at a whopping 90,000 square feet, is crammed with supertrendy clothes that won’t break the bank, such as slouchy sweaters, shirtdresses, and pouffy skirts. Menswear and children’s clothes are also sold here, and the jewelry is surprisingly well done. There are several other locations in Manhattan, including Union Square. | 1540 Broadway, between 45th and 46th sts., Midtown West | 212/302–0594 | www.forever21.com | Station: N, Q, R to 49th St.
Gap may be as ubiquitous as Starbucks, but it is still a go-to place for classic denim, khakis, and sweaters in a rainbow of colors as well as on-trend capsule collections from top designers. This flagship also carries GapBody, GapMaternity, GapKids, and babyGap. | 60 W. 34th St., at Broadway, Midtown West | 212/760–1268 | www.gap.com | Station: B, D, F, M, N, Q, R to 34th St.–Herald Sq.
A fashion fixture from the 1980s has a thoroughly modern, though still ‘80s-influenced, line. Her luminously white store carries graphic bathing suits, Grecian-style draped dresses, and her signature poofy “sleeping-bag coats.” The in-house Wellness Café sells olive oil–based beauty products. | 11 W. 56th St., between 5th and 6th aves., Midtown West | 212/957–9797 | shop.normakamali.com | Station: N, Q, R 5th Ave./59th St.
Macy’s headquarters are in the midst of a multiyear renovation, and visitors can expect a glossier, grander look with acres of marble and new video screens. On both the cosmetics and clothing floors, the focus has been shifted to prestige brands such as Gucci jewelry and Kate Spade. There is over one million square feet of retail space, so it would be easy to spend an entire day shopping here. | Herald Sq., 151 W. 34th St., between 6th and 7th aves., Midtown West | 212/695–4400 | www.macys.com | Station: B, D, F, M, N, Q, R to 34th St.–Herald Sq.
Food and Treats
Morrell & Company.
This high-end, sprawling wine shop also includes a wine bar and auction division. Come by for a free tasting or if money is no object, head to the rare wine vault. More than 100 fine wines are available by the glass at the store’s café. | 1 Rockefeller Plaza, at 49th St., Midtown West | 212/688–9370 | morrellwine.com | Station: B, D, F, M to 47th–50th Sts./Rockefeller Center.
If you’re into simple, chic, cheap style, Muji will be your trifecta. The name of this Japanese import translates to “no brand,” and indeed, you don’t find logos plastered on the housewares or clothes. Instead, their hallmark is a streamlined, minimalist design. The whole range of goods, from milky porcelain teapots to wooden toys, is invariably user-friendly. | 620 8th Ave., at 40th St., Midtown West | 212/382–2300 | www.muji.us | Station: A, C, E to 42nd St.–Port Authority.
Jewelry and Accessories
Brave the crowds in Times Square to head to Skagen’s flagship, which sells watches, handbags, and leather accessories inspired by Danish design. Many of the time pieces and satchels have a unisex design and are logo-free. | 1585 Broadway, between 47th and 48th sts., Midtown West | 845/384–1221 | www.skagen.com | Station: N, Q, R to 49th St.
Museum of Arts and Design.
This well-curated gift shop stocks crafts like beautiful handmade tableware, unusual jewelry, and rugs, often tied into ongoing exhibits. It’s a great place to stock up on gifts. | 2 Columbus Circle, at 8th Ave.,Midtown West | 212/299–7700 | thestore.madmuseum.org | Station: 1, A, B, C, D to 59th St.–Columbus Circle.
Museum of Modern Art Design and Book Store.
The MoMA’s in-house shop stocks a huge selection of art reproductions and gorgeous coffee-table books about painting, sculpture, film, and photography. Across the street is the MoMA Design Store, where you can find Charles and Ray Eames furniture reproductions, vases designed by Alvar Aalto, and lots of clever toys. | 11 W. 53rd St., between 5th and 6th aves., Midtown West | 212/708–9700 | www.moma.org/visit/plan/stores | Station: E, M to 5th Ave./53rd St.
Performing Arts Memorabilia
Drama Book Shop.
If you’re looking for a script, be it a lesser-known Russian translation or Broadway hit, chances are you can find it here. The range of books spans film, music, dance, TV, and biographies. The shop also hosts Q&As with leading playwrights. | 250 W. 40th St., between 7th and 8th aves., Midtown West | 212/944–0595 | www.dramabookshop.com | Station: A, C, E to 42nd St.–Port Authority; 1, 2, 3, 7, N, Q, R, S to Times Sq.–42nd St.
One Shubert Alley.
This was the first store to sell Broadway merchandise outside of a theater. Today souvenir posters, tees, and other knickknacks memorializing past and present Broadway hits still reign at this Theater District shop. | 1 Shubert Alley, between 44th and 45th sts., Midtown West | 212/944–4133 | Station: 1, 2, 3, 7, N, Q, R, S to Times Sq.–42nd St.
Theatrical posters both large and small are available, and the selection is democratic, with everything from Marlene Dietrich’s Blue Angel to recent Broadway shows represented. | The Film Center, 630 9th Ave., Suite 808, between 44th and 45th sts., Midtown West | 212/765–2472 | www.tritongallery.com | Station: A, C, E to 42nd St.–Port Authority.
Shoes, Handbags, and Leather Goods
These sexy status shoes are some of the most expensive on the market. The signature look is a pointy toe with a high, delicate heel, but there are also ballet flats, gladiator sandals, and over-the-knee dominatrix boots that cost nearly $2,000. Pray for a sale. | 31 W. 54th St., between 5th and 6th aves., Midtown West | 212/582–3007 | www.manoloblahnik.com | Station: E, M to 5th Ave./53rd St.
Fodor’s Choice | Smythson of Bond Street.
Although Smythson still sells stationery fit for a queen—check out the royal warrant from England’s HRH—it is also a place to scoop up on-trend handbags, iPad cases, and wallets. The hues range from sedate brown and black to eye-popping tangerine. The softbound leather diaries, address books, and travel accessories make ideal gifts. | 4 W. 57th St., between 5th and 6th aves., Midtown West | 212/265–4573 | www.smythson.com | Station: F to 57th St.; N, Q, R to 5th Ave./59th St.
Toys “R” Us.
The first thing that shoppers see when they walk into the Times Square megastore is a revolving 60-foot-high Ferris wheel. There’s also a life-size T. Rex that roars and a 4,000-square-foot Barbie dollhouse. With all the movie tie-in merchandise, video games, yo-yos, stuffed animals, and what seems to be the entire Mattel oeuvre, good luck extracting your kids from here. | 1514 Broadway, at 44th St., Midtown West | 646/366–8800 | www.toysrus.com | Station: 1, 2, 3, 7, N, Q, R, S to Times Sq.–42nd St.
Cool Local Chains in NYC
New Yorkers in the know hit these fabulous local chains for unique frocks and the best of the city’s one-stop shopping.
Loud and fun, these drugstores sprinkled around the city attract a young, eclectic crowd who come just as often for the crazy-color wigs as they do for Dove body wash and toothpaste. If you’re feeling spendy, high-end haircare and makeup is also sold here. Every fall the stores turn into Halloween Central, with a huge assortment of costumes referencing everything from Avatar to Jersey Shore. | 375 Broadway, between White and Franklin sts., TriBeCa | 212/925–5490 | www.rickysnyc.com | Station: 6, J, N, Q, R, Z to Canal St.
If you want to look stylish without trying too hard, come here to stock up on jeans (Rag & Bone, Citizens of Humanity), slinky tops, vintage-looking tees, and cozy knits from designers like Stella McCartney, Theory, and Veronica Beard. Other locations in the city sell menswear. | 473–475 Broadway, between Broome and Grand sts., SoHo | 212/925–3539 | www.scoopnyc.com | Station: 6 to Spring St.
THE UPPER EAST SIDE
This neighborhood is known for its antiques shops and high-end designers, such as Carolina Herrera, Oscar de la Renta, and Tom Ford. They are primarily sprinkled along Madison Avenue.
Antiques and Collectibles
Established in 1900, this store has an unassailable reputation among knowledgeable collectors. Expect to find American and European antiques and paintings from the 18th to 20th century. Gilt mirrors, chandeliers, and mahogany tables abound. | 962 Madison Ave., between 75th and 76th sts., Upper East Side | 212/288–6770 | www.florianpapp.com | Station: 6 to 77th St.
Leigh Keno of Antique Roadshow fame presides over this auction house, which specializes in Americana. As expected, he has a good eye and an interesting inventory; he’s sold silver sauceboats from Paul Revere, masterpiece paintings, and Chippendale furniture. | 127 E. 69th St., between Park and Lexington aves., Upper East Side | 212/734–2381 | www.kenoauctions.com | Station: 6 to 68th St.–Hunter College.
Women adore NARS for their iconic products such as Jungle Red Lipstick and multiuse sticks. The NARS flagship has glossy white walls and a red counter, and stocks the full NARS makeup range as well as a collection of “François’ Favorite Things,”which includes books, films, and photographs that have served as inspiration. | 971 Madison Ave., between 75th and 76th sts., Upper East Side | 212/861-2945 | www.narscosmetics.com | Station: 6 to 77th St.
Books and Stationery
Crawford Doyle Booksellers.
You’re as likely to see an old edition of Wodehouse as a bestseller in the window of this shop. Bibliophiles find a high-quality selection of fiction, nonfiction, and biographies, plus some rare books on the balcony. Salespeople offer their opinions and ask for yours. | 1082 Madison Ave., between 81st and 82nd sts., Upper East Side | 212/288–6300 | www.crawforddoyle.com | Station: 4, 5, 6 to 86th St.
Celebrities love this French children’s boutique for the beautiful designs and impeccable workmanship—think pony-hair baby booties and hand-embroidered jumpers and cashmere onesies. The flagship has a loftlike design with whimsical touches, such as a large indoor tree and a cloud sculpture. | 805 Madison Ave., between 67th and 68th sts., Upper East Side | 212/879–0900 | www.bonpoint.com | Station: 6 to 68th St.–Hunter College.
Prep-school girls and their mothers giggle and gossip over the tween clothes (with more than a few moms picking up T-shirts and jeans for themselves) with Les Tout Petits dresses, Juicy Couture jeans, and tees emblazoned with Justin Bieber. | 1116 Madison Ave., at 83rd St., Upper East Side | 212/734–0077 | Station: 4, 5, 6 to 86th St.
Fodor’s Choice | Alexander McQueen.
The New York flagship of this iconic fashion designer is full of rich details like intricately patterned floors, and tiny architectural details meant to draw the eye, such as feathers in the molding. Now under the helm of Sarah Burton, this location sells menswear and womenswear, which lean towards edgy gothic. | 747 Madison Ave., between 64th and 65th sts., Upper East Side | 212/645–1797 | www.alexandermcqueen.com | Station: 6 to 68th St.–Hunter College.
The signature look here is the company’s waxed cotton and quilted jackets, available for men and women. The quilted jackets, tweeds, moleskin pants, lamb’s-wool sweaters, and tattersall shirts invariably call up images of country rambles. | 1047 Madison Ave., at 80th St., Upper East Side | 212/570–2600 | www.barbour.com | Station: 6 to 77th St.
BCBG Max Azria.
This brand’s initialsare short for “bon chic, bon genre,”which means stylish sportswear and embellished, embroidered evening dresses here. The collection ranges from leather pants to maxi dresses. | 770 Madison Ave., at 66th St., Upper East Side | 212/717–4225 | www.bcbg.com | Station: 6 to 68th St.–Hunter College.
Nearly a century old, this British brand specializes in motorcycle gear that has quite the pedigree—both Che Guevara and Steve McQueen have worn Belstaff. The relaunched company have expanded their collection to include luxury basics for men and women, including peacoats, waxed jackets, and body-hugging dresses with luxury touches like python and crocodile. | 814 Madison Ave., between 68th and 69th sts., Upper East Side | 212/897–1880 | www.belstaff.com | Station: 6 to 68th St.–Hunter College.
Chic and sexy underthings in soft cottons and silks line the shelves of this uptown staple. In addition to the selection of bridal-ready white bustiers and custom-fit swimsuits (made, cleverly, in bra-cup sizes), the store is best known for its knowledgeable staff, many of whom can give tips on proper fit and size you up on sight. Cup sizes run from AA to J. | 905 Madison Ave., at 73rd St., Upper East Side | 212/772–9400 | www.brasmyth.com | Station: 6 to 68th St.–Hunter College.
Though the namesake designer has bowed out, the label keeps channeling his particular style. This stark flagship store emphasizes the luxe end of the clothing line. Men’s suits tend to be soft around the edges; women’s evening gowns are often a fluid pouring of silk. There are also shoes, accessories, housewares, and makeup. | 654 Madison Ave., at 60th St., Upper East Side | 212/292–9000 | www.calvinklein.com | Station: 4, 5, 6 to 59th St.; N, Q, R to Lexington Ave./59th St.
Calypso St. Barth.
Catch an instant island-vacation vibe from Calypso’s colorful women’s wear, which includes caftans, tunics, and dangly jewelry. To complete the look, there are also boho housewares at the brand’s New York flagship, which has a suitably beachy vibe (check out the shell chandeliers). There are multiple branches throughout the city with different themes, including an outlet on Broome Street. | 900 Madison Ave., between 72nd and 73rd sts., Upper East Side | 212/535–4100 | Station: 6 to 77th St.
A favorite of the high-society set (and A-list celebs), Herrera’s designs are ladylike and elegant. Her suits, gowns, and cocktail dresses in luxurious fabrics make for timeless silhouettes. | 954 Madison Ave., at 75th St., Upper East Side | 212/249–6552 | www.carolinaherrera.com | Station: 6 to 77th St.
Dolce & Gabbana.
It’s easy to feel like an Italian movie star amid these exuberant (in every sense) clothes. Corseted dresses are a favorite; the fabric could be sheer, furred, or leopard-print. Men’s suits are slim and sharp. | 825 Madison Ave., between 68th and 69th sts., Upper East Side | 212/249–4100 | www.dolcegabbana.com | Station: 6 to 68th St.–Hunter College.
Judith & Charles.
This Canadian import is an ideal place to shop for work clothes that have an edge (think shift dresses in bold stripes). The clothing here is separated by color and style, so it’s easy to rifle through racks of blazers, office-appropriate dresses, and well-cut tees. | 1355 3rd Ave., between 77th and 78th sts., Upper East Side | 212/988–4411 | www.judithandcharles.com | Station: 6 to 77th St.
This French-born designer’s boutique is housed inside an elegant townhouse. Her designs combine the best of New York and Parisian chic; think leather leggings, chiffon blouses, and little black dresses. | 153 E. 70th St., at Lexington Ave., Upper East Side | 646/360–3300 | www.juliettelonguet.com | Station: 6 to 68th St.–Hunter College.
Fodor’s Choice | Kate Spade.
The new Kate Spade flagship is located in a townhouse, so it feels like shopping in a well-appointed home—albeit one with oversize chandeliers and glamorous custom rugs. The nearly 8,000-square-foot space contains every Kate Spade product, from clothing to shoes and beauty. | 789 Madison Ave., between 65th and 66th sts., Upper East Side | 212/988–0259 | www.katespade.com | Station: 6 to 68th St.–Hunter College.
Fodor’s Choice | Lanvin.
This French label has been around since 1889 and is the oldest French fashion house still in existence. With Alber Elbaz at the helm, Lanvin’s signature look is fluid and sexy; think one-shouldered cocktail dresses, cigarette pants, and ruffled blouses. This elegant town house is the first U.S. outpost. The interior design itself is a showstopper; the three-story space oozes old money and glamour with its Art Deco chandeliers and soothing gray walls. And the clothes? Just as slinky. | 815 Madison Ave., between 68th and 69th sts., Upper East Side | 646/439–0381 | www.lanvin.com | Station: 6 to 68th St.–Hunter College.
If money is no object, shop here for some of the sexiest underthings around. The collection includes lace sets, corsets, and exquisite bridal lingerie. | 803 Madison Ave., between 67th and 68th sts., Upper East Side | 212/570–0050 | www.laperla.com | Station: 6 to 68th St.–Hunter College.
This designer takes an artist’s approach in her gleaming white space. She has created dresses printed with famous Andy Warhol photographs, such as the image of him drowning in a Campbell’s Soup can. Pop Art aside, her store is filled with a mix of ‘60s and ‘70s vintage clothes, as well as her own designs. | 988 Madison Ave., between 76th and 77th sts., Upper East Side | 212/431–7467 | www.lisaperrystyle.com | Station: 6 to 77th St.
Fodor’s Choice | Ludivine.
Make a beeline for this store if you love French designers. Owner Ludivine Grégoire showcases of-the-moment Gallic (and a few Italian) designers like Vanessa Bruno, Jerome Dreyfuss, and Carvin. | 1216 Lexington Ave., between 82nd and 83rd sts., Upper East Side | 212/249–4053 | www.boutiqueludivine.com | Station: 4, 5, 6 to 86th St.
If you are a curvy gal and want to celebrate your figure rather than hide it, shop here. Marina Rinaldi sells form-flattering knit dresses, wool trousers, and coats that are tasteful and luxurious. | 13 E. 69th St., between Madison and 5th aves., Upper East Side | 212/734–4333 | www.marinarinaldi.com | Station: 6 to 68th St.–Hunter College.
Think subtle colors and classics in plush fabrics—pencil skirts in heathered wool, tuxedo-style evening jackets, and several choices of wool and cashmere camel overcoats. The suits are exquisitely tailored. | 813 Madison Ave., at 68th St., Upper East Side | 212/879–6100 | www.maxmara.com | Station: 6 to 68th St.–Hunter College.
This designer keeps rolling out boutiques in the city. This location, spread over two levels, showcases his clean-cut, American classic clothing and accessories. If you need fashion inspiration, images from his runway shows are screened on an 18-foot high television. | 667 Madison Ave., between E. 60th and E. 61st Sts., Midtown West | 212/980–1550 | www.michaelkors.com | Station: N, Q, R to 5th Ave./59th St.
These bright, cheerfully patterned clothes look as at home on the Upper East Side as they would in Palm Beach or Marrakech. At designer Michelle Smith’s U.S. flagship, find flirty cocktail dresses, beach-ready maxis, andboldly patterned bathing suits. | 900 Madison Ave., between 72nd and 73rd sts., Upper East Side | 212/395–9100 | www.millyny.com | Station: 6 to 77th St.
Morgane Le Fay.
The clothes here have a dreamy, ethereal quality that is decidedly feminine. Silk gowns are fluid and soft, while blazers and coats are more tailored. Her dresses are also popular with brides who want a minimalist look. | 980 Madison Ave., between 76th and 77th sts., Upper East Side | 212/879–9700 | www.morganelefay.com | Station: 6 to 77th St.
Oscar de la Renta.
Come here for the ladylike but bold runway designs of this upper-crust favorite. Skirts swing, ruffles billow, embroidery brightens up tweed, and even a tennis dress looks like something you could go dancing in. | 772 Madison Ave., at 66th St., Upper East Side | 212/288–5810 | www.oscardelarenta.com | Station: 6 to 68th St.–Hunter College.
This stylish mini-chain has outposts around the city, but the Upper East Side location has the biggest selection of clothing from on-trend designers such as Helmut Lang and Band of Outsiders, as well as its own line of clothing. If you want that nonchalant chic look, like a tailored cape thrown over skinny jeans, this is your place. | 1232 3rd Ave., between 71 and 72nd sts., Upper East Side | 212/744–4002 | otteny.com | Station: 6 to 68th St.–Hunter College.
Fodor’s Choice | Polo Ralph Lauren.
Even if you can’t afford the clothes, come just to soak up the luxe lifestyle. This women’s flagship is housed in a 22,000-square-foot building built to look like a historic Beaux Arts mansion (or a small palace), complete with a curving marble staircase and stone floors. In addition to the complete women’s collection, the brand’s lingerie, homewares, and fine-jewelry and watch salon are here. | 888 Madison Ave., at 72nd St., Upper East Side | 212/434–8000 | www.ralphlauren.com | Station: 6 to 68th St.–Hunter College.
This former Coach creative director has branched out to launch his own luxury lifestyle store. The clothing has an edgy look, with little black dresses in heavy wool and massive cuff bracelets. The handbags and shoes, however, are more feminine. | 831 Madison Ave., between 69th and 70th sts., Upper East Side | 212/988–0560 | www.reedkrakoff.com | Station: 6 to 68th St.–Hunter College.
Rockstar style (at rockstar prices) means clothing decked out with fur, feathers, and lots of sparkle. Animal prints are big in this temple to the over-the-top. | 711 Madison Ave., at 63rd St., Upper East Side | 212/755–7722 | www.robertocavalli.com | Station: N, Q, R to 5th Ave./59th St.
Famous for revamping Gucci, Ford does not disappoint with his eponymous line. Women’s stilettos and clutches are unabashedly sexy, while men’s selections veer towards the traditional and are impeccably tailored. Shirts come in more than 300 hues, and off-the-rack suits start around $3,000. His Black Orchid unisex fragrance is a cult favorite. | 845 Madison Ave., at 70th St., Upper East Side | 212/359–0300 | www.tomford.com | Station: 6 to 68th St.–Hunter College.
The creative director of luxury Italian company Bottega Veneta now has an eponymous store in Manhattan. The elegant, wood-floored space showcases Tomas Maier’s understated clothing for men and women as well as jewelry and home goods, such as candles. Best bets include classic black dresses and structured handbags. | 956 Madison Ave., between 75th and 76th sts., Upper East Side | 212/988–8686 | www.tomasmaier.com | Station: 6 to 77th St.
The global flagship of this preppy boho label is housed in an elegantly restored townhouse. The five-story space features Tory Burch’s signature orange lacquer walls, purple curtains, and gold hardware. If you already own her iconic ballet flats, browse through the ready-to-wear collection, handbags, shoes, and jewelry. | 797 Madison Ave., between 67th and 68th sts., Upper East Side | 212/510–8371 | www.toryburch.com | Station: 6 to 68th St.–Hunter College.
No one does a better red than Valentino, and the mix here at this four-story townhouse is at once audacious and beautifully cut; the fur or feather trimmings, low necklines, and opulent fabrics are about as close as you can get to celluloid glamour. Big spenders can request the VIP suite. | 821 Madison Ave., between 68th and 69th sts., Upper East Side | 212/772–6969 | www.valentino.com | Station: 6 to 68th St.–Hunter College.
Vera Wang Bride.
This star wedding-dress designer churns out dreamy dresses that are sophisticated without being over-the-top. Choose from A-line and princess styles, and slinky sheaths. If money is no object, bespoke wedding dresses are available. An appointments is essential. | 991 Madison Ave., at 77th St., Upper East Side | 212/628–3400 | www.verawang.com | Station: 6 to 77th St.
Allow St-Tropez to influence your swimsuit; these striped, floral, and solid-color French-made trunks come in sunny hues as well as matching boys’ styles. Waterproof pocket inserts keep your essentials safe from beachcombers. The company now has a women’s line as well. | 1007 Madison Ave., between 77th and 78th sts., Upper East Side | 212/650–0353 | us.vilebrequin.com | Station: 6 to 77th St.
Barneys New York.
This luxury boutique continues to provide fashion-conscious and big-budget shoppers with irresistible, must-have items at its uptown flagship store. The extensive menswear selection has a handful of edgier designers, though made-to-measure is always an option. The women’s department showcases posh designers of all stripes, from the subdued lines of Armani and Nina Ricci to the irrepressible Alaïa and Zac Posen. The shoe selection trots out Prada boots and strappy Blahniks; the cosmetics department keeps you in Kiehl’s, Sue Devitt, and Chantecaille; jewelry runs from the whimsical (Jennifer Meyer) to the classic (Ileana Makri). | 660 Madison Ave., between 60th and 61st sts., Upper East Side | 212/826–8900 | www.barneys.com | Station: 4, 5, 6 to 59th St.; N, Q, R to Lexington Ave./59th St.
Fodor’s Choice | Fivestory.
This luxurious minidepartment store, located inside a townhouse, carries clothing, accessories, shoes, and home décor for men, women, and children in an elegant setting (think marble floors and lots of velvet and silk). It specializes in independent designers but also showcases designs from heavy-hitters such as Jason Wu and Lanvin. | 18 E. 69th St., between 5th and Madison aves., Upper East Side | 212/288–1338 | www.fivestoryny.com | Station: 6 to 68th St.–Hunter College.
Food and Treats
Famed French patissier François Payard has multiple boutiques around the city but this location is the flagship. Chocolates, pastries, and macarons are displayed like jewels in glass cases. If you need to calm the sugar rush, there’s a small dining area serving dishes like croque-monsieur. | 1293 3rd Ave., between 74th and 75th sts., Upper East | 212/717–5252 | www.payard.com | Station: 6 to 77th St.
Fodor’s Choice | La Maison du Chocolat.
Stop in at this chocolatier’s small tea salon to dive into a cup of thick, heavenly hot chocolate. The Paris-based outfit sells handmade truffles, chocolates, and pastries that could lull you into a chocolate stupor. | 1018 Madison Ave., between 78th and 79th sts., Upper East Side | 212/744–7117 | www.lamaisonduchocolat.com | Station: 6 to 77th St.
Fodor’s Choice | Ankasa.
Owners Sachin and Babi Ahluwalia used to source textiles for luxury designers like Oscar de la Renta. Now they are using that same design sensibility to produce a gorgeous line of housewares, womenswear and accessories, which are globally inspired. The embroidery is exquisite. | 1200 Madison Ave., between 87th and 88th sts., Upper East Side | 212/996–5200 | www.ankasa.com | Station: 4, 5, 6 to 86th St.
Jewelry and Accessories
This luxury retailer’s claim to fame is jewelry; its own eponymous diamond cut has A-shape facets but this British brand caters to all tastes. Everything from leather goods and rare books to polo equipment and scarves is available. | 853 Madison Ave., between 70th and 71st sts., Upper East Side | 212/688–1811 | www.asprey.com | Station: 6 to 68th St.–Hunter College.
If you’re in the market for vintage diamonds, this is the place, whether your taste is for tiaras, Art Deco settings, or sparklers once worn by a Vanderbilt. The skinny, stackable diamond eternity bands are hugely popular. | 773 Madison Ave., at 66th St., Upper East Side | 212/288–1872 | www.fredleighton.com | Station: 6 to 68th St.–Hunter College.
Fodor’s Choice | Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum.
Prowl the shelves here for intriguing urban oddments and ornaments, like sculptural tableware, Alexander Girard dolls, housewares by Alessi and Japanese notebooks by Postalco. | 2 E. 91st St., at 5th Ave.,Upper East Side | 212/849–8400 | www.cooperhewitt.org | Station: 4, 5, 6 to 86th St.
Metropolitan Museum of Art Shop.
This sprawling shop has a phenomenal book selection, as well as posters, Japanese print note cards and decorative pillows covered in William Morris prints. Reproductions of statuettes and other objets d’art fill the gleaming cases in every branch. Don’t miss the jewelry selection, with its Byzantine- and Egyptian-inspired baubles. | 1000 5th Ave., at 82nd St., Upper East Side | 212/570–3894 | store.metmuseum.org | Station: 4, 5, 6 to 86th St.
Museum of the City of New York.
Satisfy your curiosity about New York City’s past, present, or future with the terrific selection of books, cards, toys, and photography posters. | 1220 5th Ave., at 103rd St., Upper East Side | 212/534–1672 | www.mcny.org | Station: 6 to 103rd St.
Like the museum, the in-house bookshop and design store focuses on German, Austrian, and Central European art. Everything from children’s toys to accessories and home décor is available here. | 1048 5th Ave., between 85th and 86th sts., Upper East Side | 212/628–6200 | www.neuegalerie.org | Station: 4, 5, 6 to 86th St.
Shoes, Handbags, and Leather Goods
Although arguably most famous for her “I’m Not a Plastic Bag” tote, Hindmarch’s real standouts are buttery leather shoulder bags and hobos, which are decidely understated. Her designs run the gamut from cheeky to ladylike. Leather goods can be embossed with monograms, entire sentences, or a sketch. | 795 Madison Ave., between 67th and 68th sts., Upper East Side | 646/852–6233 | www.anyahindmarch.com | Station: 6 to 68th St.–Hunter College.
Fodor’s Choice | Charlotte Olympia.
The Art Deco–inspired space at this British shoe store showcases very sexy and expensive stilettos, pumps, and flats. Accessories such as shoulder bags and clutches are also available. | 22 E. 65th St., at Madison Ave., Upper East Side | 212/744–1842 | www.charlotteolympia.com | Station: 6 to 68th St.–Hunter College.
Lipstick-red soles are the signature of Louboutin’s delicately sexy couture slippers and stilettos, and his pointy-toe creations come trimmed with beads, buttons, or “tattoos.”|965 Madison Ave., between 75th and 76th sts., Upper East Side | 212/396–1884 | www.christianlouboutin.com | Station: 6 to 77th St.
Church’s English Shoes.
Beloved by bankers and lawyers, these shoes are of indisputable quality. You could choose something highly polished for an embassy dinner, a classic penny loafer, or a suede ankle boot for a country weekend. | 689 Madison Ave., at 62nd St., Upper East Side | 212/758–5200 | www.church-footwear.com | Station: N, Q, R to 5th Ave./59th St.; F to Lexington Ave./63rd St.
You may have spotted her snakeskin hobo on celebs such as Halle Berry and Ashley Olsen. This serene space is a perfect backdrop for the designer’s luxury handbags and shoes, which are crafted from premium leather. Roomy shoulder bags come in python and calf leather, and evening bags have a touch of sparkle. There’s also a selection of jewelry and scarves. | 717 Madison Ave., between 63rd and 64th sts., Upper East Side | 212/644–4499 | www.devikroell.com | Station: N, Q, R to 5th Ave./59th St.
This legendary French retailer is best known for its iconic handbags, the Kelly and the Birkin, named for Grace Kelly and Jane Birkin, as well as its silk scarves and neckties. True to its roots, Hermès still stocks saddles and other equestrian items in addition to a line of beautifully simple separates. | 691 Madison Ave., at 62nd St., Upper East Side | 212/751–3181 | www.hermes.com | Station: N, Q, R to 5th Ave./59th St.; F to Lexington Ave./63rd St.
Pointy toes, low vamps, narrow heels, ankle-wrapping straps—these British-made shoes are sometimes more comfortable than they look. | 716 Madison Ave., between 63rd and 64th sts., Upper East Side | 212/759–7078 | www.jimmychoo.com | Station: F to Lexington Ave./63rd St.
Fodor’s Choice | Jack Rogers.
This brand, beloved by prepsters everywhere, is most famous for its Navajo sandal, worn by Jackie Onassis. You can still buy the Navajo at the Jack Rogers flagship store, as well as other footwear like ballet pumps, boots, and wedges. | 1198 Madison Ave., between 87th and 88th sts., Upper East Side | 212/259–0588 | www.jackrogersusa.com | Station: 4, 5, 6 to 86th St.
If you truly want to be well-heeled, pick up a pair of these luxury shoes, whose prices start at around $1,200. Owned by Hermès, John Lobb offers classic styles such as oxfords, loafers, boots, and slippers. | 800 Madison Ave., between 67th and 68th sts., Upper East Side | 212/888–9797 | www.johnlobb.com | Station: 6 to 68th St.–Hunter College.
Although best known for its chunky, comfy wedges, this French brand is not without its sense of fun. The sandal selection includes beaded starfish shapes, and for winter, the ankle boots have killer heels but the soles are padded. | 19 E. 62nd St., between 5th and Madison aves., Upper East Side | 212/207–8600 | www.robertclergerie.com | Station: N, Q, R to 5th Ave./59th St.; F to Lexington Ave./63rd St.
These coveted driving moccasins, loafers, and boots are the top choice for jet-setters who prefer low-key, logo-free, luxury goods. Though most of the women’s selection is made up of low-heel or flat styles, an increasing number of high heels are bent on driving sales, rather than cars. The handbags feature the same fine craftsmanship. | 650 Madison Ave., near 60th St., Upper East Side | 212/644–5945 | www.tods.com | Station: N, Q, R to 5th Ave./59th St.
THE UPPER WEST SIDE
Although largely a residential neighborhood, the Upper West Side has some excellent food (Zabar’s) as well as smaller boutiques.
Books and Stationery
Westsider Books & Westsider Records.
This wonderfully crammed space is a lifesaver on the Upper West Side. Squeeze in among the stacks of art books and fiction, or pop outside for the $1 bargains. Don’t miss the rare book collection. | 2246 Broadway, between 80th and 81st sts., Upper West Side | 212/362–0706 | www.westsiderbooks.com | Station: 1 to 79th St.
Cameras and Electronics
Apple Store. Branch location at 1981 Broadway. See Midtown East for full review.
A Time for Children.
When you shop at this funky boutique, you’ll also be doing some good, as 100% of the profits go to the Children’s Aid Society. Choose from toys, books, and clothing, which include classic brands such as Petit Bateau as well as graphic-print footed PJs. | 506 Amsterdam Ave., between 84th and 85th sts., Upper West Side | 212/580–8202 | www.atimeforchildren.org | Station: 1 to 86th St.
Who needs to go downtown for cutting-edge designers? This store stocks sleek designs from Ulla Johnson, Destin and A.L.C. The selection of bags, shoes, and jewelry is just as stylish. | 410 Columbus Ave., between 79th and 80th sts., Upper West Side | 212/799–1567 | www.bocnyc.com | Station: 1 to 79th St.; B, C, to 81st St.–Museum of Natural History.
Fodor’s Choice | Intermix.
Whether you’re looking for the perfect daytime dress, a pair of J Brand jeans, or a puffer coat that doesn’t make you look like the Michelin man, Intermix sells a well-curated assortment of emerging and established designers. Expect to see designs from DVF, Rag & Bone, and Missoni. There are a number of locations in the city. | 210 Columbus Ave., between 69th and 70th sts., Upper West Side | 212/769–9116 | www.intermixonline.com | Station: 1, 2, 3, B, C to 72nd St.
Trendy pieces that don’t break the bank are what Mint is all about. The collection includes Alice & Olivia, Susana Monaco, and Joe’s Jeans. The walls are painted, of course, in mint. | 448 Columbus Ave., between 81st and 82nd sts., Upper West Side | 212/362–6250 | www.shopmint.com | Station: 1 to 79th St.; B, C to 81st St.–Museum of Natural History.
This cozy boutique, which means “simple” in Hebrew, specializes in stylish casual wear. If your weekend uniform consists of button-down shirts, understated jewelry, and espadrilles, then make a beeline here. | 57 W. 84th St. , between Columbus Ave. and Central Park W, Upper West Side | 212/501–9400 | www.pachute.com | Station: B, C to 86th St.
Food and Treats
Le Palais des Thés.
If you prefer a mellower caffeine kick, come to this French-owned tea boutique. All varieties of black and green teas are available as well as rarer leaves and globally inspired blends, such as a Turkish hammam flavor that includes roses and dates. The box sets and canisters make excellent gifts. | 194 Columbus Ave., at 69th St., Upper West Side | 646/664–1902 | www.palaisdesthes.com | Station: 1 to 66th St.–Lincoln Center; B, C to 72nd St.
When it comes to authentic New York food, it’s hard to beat rugelach, bagels, or lox from this favorite specialty food emporium. | 2245 Broadway, at 80th St., Upper West Side | 212/787–2000 | www.zabars.com | Station: 1 to 79th St.
Shoes, Handbags, and Leather Goods
Fodor’s Choice | Tani.
Fashionable Upper West Side ladies love this shoe store for its huge selection and patient staff. Tani’s selection is mostly classic-with-a-twist, and shoppers find brands that are more cool than sexy, such as Doc Martens and Camper. | 2020 Broadway, between 69th and 70th sts., Upper West Side | 212/873–4361 | Station: 1, 2, 3 to 72nd St.
Acker Merrall & Condit.
Founded in 1820 and billing itself as America’s oldest wine shop, Acker Merrall &Condit carries a superb selection of red Burgundies. There’s also a wide range of rare and fine wines. | 160 W. 72nd St., between Amsterdam and Columbus Aves., Upper West Side | 212/787–1700 | www.ackerwines.com | Station: 1, 2, 3 to 72nd St.