future home of Sabon, 10/11/11, A. Fine
The first is in the two small retail spaces on the west side of Lexington just south of 86th Street which formerly housed a Tim Horton's and a cheesy cell phone store. The replacement, which is combining the spaces, is Israeli luxury soap maker, Sabon. Sabon does have competition from L'Occitane which is expected to be open in time for the holiday season on East 86th between 3rd and Lex. In any case, the Sabon sure is an upgrade from what was there, and adds yet another luxury store to the 86th Street landscape. It has been quite a rapid and remarkable transformation of what was a forlorn stretch of Lex just a few years back.
Patagonia pop-up, 10/11/11, A. Fine
Also coming soon is a Patagonia "pop-up store" on the northeast corner of 84th and Third Avenue. The space, a combination of the former Mumtaz (Indian restaurant) that was there forever and a Lenscrafters that disappeared a couple of years ago. The space has been gutted and glassed up. According to Racked.com, the Patagonia will give it a shot for six months and the gauge whether they are interested in the long term. I find the placement of this retail as an interesting development. Being a full 2 blocks from 86th Street this would be the southernmost large retailer on this stretch of Third Avenue (Ann Taylor Loft is slightly further north across the street). The area is still high traffic, so I think a Patagonia type retailer could be successful there at the right price. Still, to be honest, I was really rooting for a quality hardware store which the neighborhood lacks. No offense, Wankel's!