By  on September 26, 2008

NEW YORK — Bergdorf Goodman is maximizing its main-floor potential.

The luxury specialty store, which had a 9.1 percent increase in sales to $579.7 million this year, will mark the completion of its 18-month, main-floor renovation with the opening of a 3,000-square-foot Modern Accessories Room on Saturday.

Located on the 57th Street side of the store, the room heralds a fresher, more modern direction. Created under the direction of Bergdorf’s senior vice president of fashion office and store presentation, Linda Fargo, the room features traditional elements such as crown moldings fused with contemporary touches like custom-made Swarovski crystal chandeliers, clear and smoked-glass cases lined with metal strapping and onyx details. Vendors in the space are more cutting edge, such as Balenciaga, Lanvin and Azzedine Alaïa.

“It’s the most modern environment that we have on the main floor,” said Jim Gold, president and chief executive officer of Bergdorf’s. “It’s still very glamorous, but the overall vibe of the room is a bit more modern than what we’ve done in the past on the main floor.”

For the first time, all accessory categories from a particular brand will be displayed, from bags and belts to jewelry and eyewear. Mannequins dot the room showing how styles look. Other designers in the room include Alexander McQueen, Chrome Hearts, Yves Saint Laurent, Jimmy Choo and Pierre Hardy.

“We designed this fixturing in a way that, when appropriate, we can take a brand and showcase a world of accessories that brand offers,” Gold said. “We’ve never been able to do that. [Accessories] haven’t always been the easiest [category] to show. It requires more thought to properly display accessories than place a fixture for ready-to-wear.”

There also will be exclusive brands to Bergdorf’s, such as Debora Sinibaldi, Pauric Sweeney and Renaud Pellegrino. Eyewear will be a displayed nearby, with styles from the likes of Tom Ford, Chanel and Barton Perreira. Also close by is an Oliver Peoples in-store eyewear boutique.

Prices start at $750 and go up to $25,000 for an exotic skin bag. While he declined to divulge sale projections for the Modern Accessories Room, Gold anticipates that the area will draw a lot of interest, despite the dour economic climate.

“Women love accessories,” he said. “Handbags, jewelry, sunglasses and belts are product categories that we are very passionate about. Our strategy doesn’t change. We edit the market for the best products. We would never trade down.”

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