NORA ZANDRE GOING OUT OF BUSINESS; LANDLORD REFUSES TO RENEW LEASE
Byline: Sharon Edelson
NEW YORK — Nora Zandre said she will hold going-out-of-business sales at the two Connecticut stores that bear her name beginning tomorrow.
In the last three years, the going-out-of-business sale has become an all-too-familiar sight at upscale boutiques.
Charles Sumner, the Boston specialty store that dressed an affluent clientele for nearly half a century, held one when it closed in October. Other venerable names that were relatively recent casualties of the tough business climate include Martha’s, Lou Lattimore, Sara Fredericks and Gazebo.
Zandre, however, said her store closings were not prompted by competition or the economy. She said she has had a five-year lease with a five-year renewal option for almost 35 years, and now the landlord doesn’t want to renew it. She would not elaborate nor would she identify the landlord.
Zandre opened her first store in New Canaan in 1963 and followed with a second location, in Orange, seven years later.
The stores, which had a reputation for exacting service, carried designers such as Escada, Rena Lange, Valentino, Yves Saint Laurent and Oscar de la Renta.
“There was no competition from upscale shopping malls or other boutiques,” Zandre said Tuesday. “This has nothing to do with me.”
Unlike some high-end retailers that have seen their clientele age and dwindle, Zandre said she has been able to cultivate the next generation with lines such as Mondi and Max Mara.
“Many of the children of my customers are now my customers,” she said. “It would be very difficult to open at another location, but I’m still keeping my corporation. There could very well be a chance that I would open a boutique in the future. Somebody in Florida wants me to open a store. I haven’t decided anything yet.”