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As 2012 draws to a close, we're surveying our friends in the fashion industry about the year's biggest news stories and most exciting developments. So far, we've looked at the best and worst trends, and favorite personal purchases; now, let's discuss which neighborhoods or streets have improved the most, retail-wise. Readers, let us know what you think in the comments.
Image via WWD
Kay Lee, store owner of Otte: Uptown has greatly expanded its offerings, particularly around the 60s and 70s and on Madison Avenue. So many contemporary brands (Yigal, Rag & Bone, Alice and Olivia) opened next to the high-end designers. In addition, we opened our newest location on 71st and Third after seeing such potential in that neighborhood.
Eddy Chai and Paul Birardi, store owners of Odin: Williamsburg is hardly a newcomer for shopping, but it's still surprising how many new stores keep emerging.
Shana Tabor, store owner of In God We Trust: I think Wythe Avenue in Williamsburg is really going for it. We spent six years on that street with no action and now it is insane!
The Shophound, fashion blogger: We don't know if it is an improvement, but Mercer Street between Houston and Prince Streets is becoming one of the city's most opulent blocks, bursting with new or soon-to-open designer boutiques like, Versace, Balenciaga and Saint Laurent. It solidifies Soho's resurgence as a premier shopping district to rival Midtown with the same mix of chain stores and exclusive luxury.
Kirsten Fleming, fashion writer at the New York Post: I think the NoMad area keeps getting more interesting, especially since Maison Kitsune set up shop there.
Lindsey Green, fashion publicist: I was recently staying on the Upper East Side (thanks Hurricane Sandy!), and I was super impressed/surprised with the additions to Madison Avenue. I'm now fully considering a retail-driven move there.
Faith Hope Consolo, Chairman of the Retail Group for Douglas Elliman Real Estate: Meatpacking, without a doubt. A lot of pundits thought the neighborhood would change for the worse when many of the pioneering stores like Stella McCartney opted to relocate, but clearly that did not happen. And Soho continues to be "so sought after" and has attracted a multitude of national and international retailers.
Karin Bereson, store owner of No.6: Definitely Williamsburg.
Mizhattan, fashion blogger: Not a neighborhood or street, but the biggest improvement this year would be the renovations of all the shoe salons at department stores. As a person with an insatiable appetite for shoes, this is definitely a good thing.
As for a particular street, surprisingly enough, it would be Fifth Avenue. This tour de force strip of concrete and asphalt hasn't fared so well since the recession. Now, it's nice to see new additions like the goliath Uniqlo store, the first-ever US Massimo Dutti boutique, and the new Zara flagship.
Morgan Yakus, store owner of No.6: The north side of Williamsburg.