Yigal Azrouël has had a shop in Meatpacking for over ten years, but the designer has decided to trade it in for a more prestigious zip code this fall. WWD broke the news today that the 408 West 14th Street store will close in August, and in September, it'll reopen at 1011 Madison Avenue.
According to the article, "The decision was spurred in part by the changing retail scene of the Meatpacking District." CEO Donata Minelli adds, "For the first five years, there was a more high-end nature of shoppers. Having the Apple store there has brought in another wave of shoppers." There's where to point your finger.
But, does it count as MePa Creep? A few months back, a lot of attention was paid to the fact that boutiques were being pushed out of Meatpacking, due to the arrival of larger stores like Sephora and Intermix. The boutiques set up in other neighborhoods, hence the creeping. The key, though, is that the smaller stores were mostly pushed out because they couldn't compete with the demanding rents of bigger retailers.
In Yigal's case, it doesn't sound like he was forced out, especially since WWD mentions that the brand was looking for an uptown store for "a couple of years." And it's not like it's cheap up there, either. Just think of it as more of a Stella McCartney type of situation.
To maintain a downtown anchor, the brand is also looking in Soho, "preferably on Mercer or Greene Street." If all goes well, Yigal and team hope to open a store around there within the first half of 2013. As for the time being, there's always Cut25 on Grand Street.
· Yigal Azrouël Heading Uptown to Madison Ave [WWD]
· Henry Beguelin's West Village Shop Is a Sign of "MePa Creep" [Racked NY]
· Stella McCartney Says Soho Is More Grown Up Than Meatpacking [Racked NY]