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Retail Run on Bowery


Bowery is fast becoming a retail hotbed. (image: Peter Guthrie on Flickr)
Bowery is fast becoming a retail hotbed. (image: Peter Guthrie on Flickr)

Much has been made of the metamorphosis of the Bowery from one time skid row to trendy runway. Boutique hotels, apartment buildings, the New Museum and residential developments have landed and it seems retail is realizing the street’s potential.

“I really think it’s coming together down there,” said Faith Hope Consolo, chairman of the retail group at Douglas Elliman. Anthropologie will soon be coming to 250 Bowery, stylist Patricia Field has moved to 302 and Intermix boutique is new to the street. “Bitsy Bardot is opening a restaurant at 341 Broome, right on Bowery,” Ms. Consolo told The Commercial Observer.SRO restaurant at 245 Bowery may open soon.”

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“Maybe this coming year we will finally have the ‘booming bowery,’ she said. “Artsy but more retail, defined by some well known tenants and more galleries…”

“It’s a long time in the make,” said David Tricarico, senior director with Cushman & Wakefield (CWK). A rebirth which started six years ago hadn’t gained momentum until a little over a year ago. “That’s when things started changing.”

Most of the play is on Bowery south of Houston, said Mr. Tricarico, pointing to the intersection of Spring Street. There, restaurant and lounge company, EMM Group, has leased roughly 20,000 square feet for a new venture, he said.

According to Ariel Schuster, executive vice president with Robert K. Futterman, top retailers are finding the spaces on Bowery north of Houston to be most attractive, noting the 8,100 square feet of space Patagonia leased in the former punk club, CBGB OMFUG. Fashion retailer John Varvatos is next door. National brands are also on the prowl for space, though he wouldn’t name names for fear of interrupting a deal in progress. “The activity, the tenants that are attracted there—there seems to be more happening,” Mr. Schuster said. “It’s a little bit of a tighter market.”

Though he feels the northern section may be more attractive to top tier retailers, within five to ten years Bowery will likely be “one golden strip.” “Bowery has certainly replaced Nolita,” Mr. Schuster said.