Opening Ceremony is the latest Soho retailer to close

“We are stepping back from multi-brand retail, for a moment,” the company said

New York /
Jan.January 15, 2020 09:45 AM
Opening Ceremony founders Humberto Leon and Carol Lim and the brand's Soho location at 35 Howard Street (Credit: Getty Images, Google Maps)  

Opening Ceremony founders Humberto Leon and Carol Lim and the brand’s Soho location at 35 Howard Street (Credit: Getty Images, Google Maps)

Yet another Soho retailer is packing up shop as headwinds hit the retail sector.

Opening Ceremony, the hip clothing store that has been in Soho for almost two decades at 35 Howard Street and has another location at the Ace Hotel in Koreatown, announced it will close its retail locations.

“We are stepping back from multi-brand retail, for a moment, so we can come back with an experience that is just as inspiring,” the retailer wrote in an Instagram post.

Even though the store had become a staple of the neighborhood, it couldn’t survive an ownership changeover. The closing announcement came one day after Opening Ceremony was acquired by New Guard Group, a subsidiary of Farfetch, The Cut first reported.

Last month, another beloved Soho retailer, skate gear company Blades, closed its location at 659 Broadway after 30 years of operation.

“Costs are going up, and as the internet economy is becoming increasingly stronger, the retailers are getting squeezed out,” Blades founder Jeff Kabat said at the time.

The closures come even as retail rents Soho are declining. In the third quarter of 2019, asking rents on Broadway in Soho dropped 14 percent in 12 months to $486 per square foot, according to CBRE. Asking rents on Broadway are close to half of what they were at the peak of the market in 2015.

Some landlords, however, are finding promise in Soho deals. Last month, Acadia Realty Trust and Prusik Group acquired the leasehold interest in the retail space occupied by Victoria’s Secret Pink at 565 Broadway. The location is currently occupied by Victoria’s Secret. [The Cut] — David Jeans


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