By  on April 29, 2008

The redeveloped Plaza Hotel is about to have its first new boutique opening.

Vertu, the 10-year-old British mobile phone brand owned by Nokia, is scheduled to open Wednesday, in the first of what soon will be a string of upscale boutique openings inside the famed hotel on Fifth Avenue and 59th Street. Elad Properties bought the Plaza for $675 million in 2004 and has poured $400 million into its two-year renovation.

"The legendary Plaza Hotel is now more than just a hotel, catering to shoppers, travelers and tenants who enjoy and expect upscale services and lavish amenities," said Vertu chief executive officer Alberto Torres.

Vertu plans to open more stores in the U.S. The only other unit in America is at The Wynn in Las Vegas. The 500-square-foot boutique in the Plaza is designed with polished black glass walls, marble floors and a signature white "features wall" to accommodate the full range of handsets. There is also a "craft unit" featuring components from the handsets, including the bespoke farmed crystal quartz used for the screens, and samples of the precious metals forming the body of each Vertu phone.

Other boutiques in the Plaza will be opening this spring, primarily smaller niche brands from Europe and the U.S., including Rachel Roy, Kenneth Jay Lane, Gurka, Marlies Dekkers, lingerie designer Arthur and Eton, a shirtmaker.

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