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Racked Recap: The Year In...Retail Menaces

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It's been a big year for New York City retail (and not just because Racked was born in March). This week, we'll relive the glorious highlights and gruesome lowlights. We'll be recapping, among other things, the most notable closings, biggest openings, lamest openings and the most important retail stretches the city has to offer. Here we go...


Mega-Scoop, shot in April by Keith Kin Yan

It's not all sunshine, cotton candy and rainbows in the New York City storescape. Retail menaces, those forces that threaten good taste and endanger great shopping, are everywhere. Here, our top three.

3) Scoop: This year, Scoop really outdid itself. The boutique chainlet, which dumbs down really good fashion for hordes of tanned lemmings, birthed Mega Scoop, a 10,000-square-foot store the size of a city block, in Soho. The store carries clothing for men, women, children and baby, as well as beachwear, shoes and accessories. Next, founder Stefani Greenfield conquered television, going on HSN to promote her brand with a show, Scoop Style. And most recently, the company decided to grab another portion of the market, beauty products, with one of its many tentacles. Greenfield, we live in fear of you while remaining awed by your evil genius.

2) Chase: Do we really need so many Chase banks? Do we? No, we do not.

1) A Hollister for Soho: Perhaps the most crushing news of the past year was the revelation that the Pottery Barn at 600 Broadway and Houston Street in Soho will soon close to make way for an enormous Hollister, Manhattan's first. We really are hard-pressed to think of a worse addition to the neighborhood. Readers felt similarly. One commented, "I'm trying to think of how a Hollister is worse than a Pottery Barn, or two H&Ms, or Old Navy. I have no good reasons, but it somehow is worse. Way worse." You are correct, sir.

Honorable mention goes to the Starbucks/North Fork hybrid (also known as "Starfork" or "Northbucks"), endless celebrity-"designed" clothing lines, the garish Tommy Hilfiger denim store in Soho, Duane Reade and its lackluster holiday window displays and greedy landlords.