Tenants already ditching the Limelight

April 18, 2011 10:01AM

Chelsea’s Limelight Marketplace — the church-turned-nightclub-turned-retail mall on Sixth Avenue and 20th Street — debuted to much fanfare less than a year ago but has already begun to shed tenants. According to Crain’s, foot traffic has plummeted since the initial hype surrounding the property’s $15 million conversion, and now there are grumblings of poor management amongst the vendors that remain. Tenants at the 30,000-square-foot venue are mostly small businesses for whom this is their first retail location. Alongside them were more established brands, like LeSportsac and Hunter Boots, both of which have since ditched their spots there. Grimaldi’s, the popular Brooklyn-based pizzeria, didn’t open at the Limelight until February, by which time things had already started to go downhill. Critics have pointed to the venue’s lack of focus — gifts, clothing and food are all currently on offer — as a reason for its failure to draw shoppers. Entrepreneur Jack Menashe, who spearheaded the conversion project, now says he hopes to transform the space into a haven for high-end fashion tenants, with French Connection, Edwing D’Angelo and Covert Shoe Lab all slated to open in the coming months. [Crain’s]

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