Over 20,000 people had RSVP’d to come to last week’s opening of the shops and restaurants at New York’s new Hudson Yards. The project of course, is the multi-billion dollar development on Manhattan’s far West Side, which includes offices, housing, event spaces, restaurants, and, well, a mall.
But this is no regular mall—it’s shiny and glistening on the outside and filled with luxury brands and other shopping fare on the inside. There’s New York’s first Neiman Marcus and a Lululemon; there’s a Cartier and the first-ever brick-and-mortar Mack Weldon (an online-birthed underwear brand). There are chic eateries by big-name chefs (David Chang) and precious coffee joints (Blue Bottle). It’s all very much new New York—packaged with a luxury bow on top.
One shop that stands out, however, is the Forty Five Ten on the fifth floor. The Dallas-based high-end store mixes men’s and women’s fashion with art and homewares, and it practically has the entire level to itself. There are four separate shops for various departments (including 4510/SIX, which focuses on emerging designers, and another section that features an excellent assortment of vintage). The 16,000-square-foot space was co-designed by Kristen Cole, Forty Five Ten’s president and creative director and Joe Cole, Headington Companies’ senior vice president of retail and hospitality. Additionally, they worked with the trendy design collaborative Snarkitecture on the storefronts.
With its blue walls and matching modular racks, the men’s store is both spare and whimsical. “I love the minimalist design we accomplished while pulling in really bold color and structural elements,” Ms. Cole told Robb Report. “We wanted the design to feel clean, modern and bright. The product is so well-highlighted here and the custom display pieces, like the Yves Klein blue, cubist grid really allows us to change the way we present clothing and accessories. I think a systematic no-fuss display really appeals to men.”
All the spaces, while separate, interact with each other in fun and unexpected ways, using bold hues to unite them but also give them distinct identities. “Color in scale is really important to the brand expression as well, so you’ll see a lot of bold applications—the pink “pill” rooms in women’s, the ombre spectrum colored walls in 4510/SIX, the Yves Klein blue in men’s, and the gorgeous chunky black speckled terrazzo in the vintage space.”
The products within, of course, are the real draw, and Cole has made sure to display them in a way that’s both accessible but also treats them like wearable artworks. Additionally, they represent a Dallas-New York mix of sorts. “The designers are typical of our store’s robust roster in luxury and emerging designers for men and women across the portfolio, but we certainly edited the buy with New York in mind. I lived in New York for many years and have always spent so much of my time here—I have a clear sense of how New Yorkers dress. Buying to meet the lifestyle and aesthetic differences for our markets is one of many joys of operating in unique cities.”
The overall scope of the Hudson Yards project is indeed impressive, and Forty Five Ten’s breadth and sprawl is no exception. I asked Cole if there were any hiccups or challenges in bringing her part of it to life. “We’ll keep those to ourselves!” she said. “We are open and ready for business—the rest is history.”