NEW BEAUTY: Kiehl’s has opened its first freestanding apothecary store in Greater China, a 485-square-foot shop in Hong Kong. The store is in the Gateway, an upscale mall in the tourist center of the city, Tsimshatsui.

An in-house team designed the store’s interior, which is based on the company’s first shop on New York’s Lower East Side. The whimsical-but-businesslike decor features Mr. Bones (a skeleton), a limited-edition 100th anniversary Harley Davidson, a baby photo wall, a blackboard and white marble countertops. A Kiehl’s spokeswoman in Hong Kong declined to project sales figures for the shop.

Kiehl’s also has an apothecary counter in Seibu at Pacific Place (a high-end mall on Hong Kong Island) that opened in March. The counter has been the focus of lots of publicity here as film actress Michelle Yeoh lent her name and presence to an AIDS Concern fund-raising effort led by Kiehl’s. The three-month event raised proceeds from the sale of three products chosen by Yeoh. Last week, Yeoh joined Kiehl’s Stephen Mosely in presenting a check for $12,830, or 100,000 Hong Kong dollars, to the charity. —Constance Haisma-Kwok

SLIP SLIDING AWAY:
Same-store sales at department stores in Japan fell 2.3 percent to $6.5 billion (775.1 billion yen) in July compared with a year ago, the Japan Department Stores Association said Monday. The 16th drop in a row in total sales of 290 department stores throughout Japan resulted from unseasonable weather, according to the association. Sales of apparel, which made up 37.2 percent of total sales, dipped 0.7 percent to $2.4 billion (288.7 billion yen). Men’s wear sales, which accounted for 6.7 percent of overall sales, fell 2.8 percent, while sales of women’s wear, 24.5 percent of total sales, were flat compared with a year earlier. Kids’ wear sales, 2.8 percent of the total, rose 3 percent.Sales of other apparel merchandise, representing 3.2 percent of the total, slid 4.4 percent. Dollar figures have been converted from the Japanese yen at current exchange.

At chain stores, sales in July fell 0.5 percent to $10.2 billion (1.2 trillion yen) in spite of a huge rise in the number of units, according to the Japan Chain Stores Association. Sales of 8,867 stores, 2,670 units more than the same month of last year and 28 units more than in June alone, dropped 5 percent.Apparel sales fell 12.0 percent to $1.4 billion (168.4 billion yen). — Koji Hirano

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