Online shopping darling Monica + Andy has opened a physical store in Manhattan.
RKF’s Justin Fantasia and Carly Geller represented the organic baby clothes retailer in a lease for 810 s/f space at 410 Columbus Avenue. The landlord, Orleans Realty, was represented in-house.
Opening tomorrow (Thursday) it is the third store Monica + Andy has opened since being launched online in 2014 by new mom Monica Royer as a supplier of clothing featuring kid-friendly fabrics free of lead, phthalates, and flame-retardants. The company’s products are also available at Nordstrom and it has two physical stores in Chicago.
“The Upper West Side is a dense residential market and kid-friendly neighborhood that provides great pedestrian foot traffic and a strong mix of both national and local co-tenants,” said RKF’s Fantasia. “It was the perfect fit for Monica + Andy’s first foray into New York City.”
Located between 79th and 80th Street, 410 Columbus Avenue is across from the family-friendly American Museum of National History, Theodore Roosevelt Park and Central Park. Neighbors include Flying Tiger, Polarn O. Pyret USA, Scotch & Soda, and Pure Barre Upper West Side.
Located on the ground floor of a 10-story condo building, the space features a windowed storefront with 15 ft. of frontage on Columbus Avenue.
“When looking for a space in New York City it was important for us to be in an area where we were not only amongst other established retailers, but also a family area,” said Royer. “RKF was the perfect partner and as expected, they found us the perfect retail location for our first NYC Guideshop.”
The retailer explained, “Guide Shops essentially allow the consumers to receive one-on-one attention with a guide, aka stork. Consumers are given the opportunity to shop, experience and feel the product and find the perfect fit. It also allows the retailer to have less physical inventory, so they can show a larger breadth of product in store. The product is then wrapped at distribution centers and sent directly to the consumer.”
Monica + Andy is the latest online brand to turn clicks to bricks in a volatile sector that some experts believe is a prelude to retail’s best days.
David Birnbrey, chairman and CEO of The Shopping Center Group, believes the sector is undergoing a renaissance being driven by creative developers conceiving and designing retail, restaurant and entertainment venues in spaces and places one would never have imagined.
“Urban’ no longer defines danger, but rather convenience and pleasure. ‘Exurban’ is where disposable money and disposable time meet—the ‘experience’ is better than ever,” says Birnbrey.
“Croqs, Peter Millar, Frye Boots, Shinola, Apple and Samsung were all brands first, before becoming stores. That rarely happened in the old days. And now on-line brands like Bonobos, Warby Parker, Rent the Runway, Sweaty Betty and Blue Nile Jewelers recognize that actual brick and mortar stores provided new opportunities for revenue growth and improved customer service.”
Monica + Andy is moving to a space previously occupied by Alexis Bittar, the jewelry company best known for Lucite bangles and high fashion collaborations.