Brookstone, a retail chain that sells massage chairs and other novelty merchandise, filed for bankruptcy and plans to close all of its 102 stores in shopping malls, including five in South Florida.
Brookstone’s mall locations in South Florida include Aventura Mall, Boca Town Center in Boca Raton, Dadeland Mall in Miami, the Galleria in Fort Lauderdale and the Gardens at Palm Beach in Palm Beach Gardens.
The retailer plans to sell its 35 stores at airports, including one at Miami International Airport.
The retailer’s owner is a Chinese conglomerate called Sanpower, which acquired Brookstone at a 2014 bankruptcy auction for $173 million.
Merrimack, New Hampshire-based Brookstone on Thursday filed for bankruptcy for the second time in the last four years amid declining business conditions at shopping malls and booming retail sales online.
Retail analysts say Brookstone and other specialty retailers have struggled as Amazon, Target and other large retailers have expanded their selection of unusual gadgets and other types of novelty merchandise.
Brookstone’s rival Sharper Image filed for bankruptcy a decade ago, and mail-order retailer SkyMall did so three years ago. [Washington Post] – Mike Seemuth