Ariel Foxman, former editor in chief of InStyle, has taken on a new gig, and it’s in a completely different industry.
Foxman has been named general manager of Boston Seaport, a development project consisting of 33 acres of waterfront land with a mix of residential, hotel, office, retail, entertainment, civic and cultural uses, and public open space. Seaport aims to become a destination for fashion, culture, arts, dining and entertainment, as well as technology and life sciences.
Foxman, who started Monday, will oversee day-to-day operations, marketing and guest experiences for the neighborhood, and spearhead civic and brand partnership efforts. He’ll also focus on attracting, retaining and growing Seaport’s tenant base, whose current retail mix includes Lululemon, Bluemercury, Everlane, L.L. Bean and Outdoor Voices, along with workout classes, outdoor yoga, art installations, and beer gardens. Adjacent in the neighborhood are places such as the Boston’s Children’s Museum, Boston Tea Party Ships & Museum, and Institute of Contemporary Art
Foxman said he relocated to Boston last January for his husband’s new job and moved to the Seaport. “It’s on the water, and our son has become obsessed with boats, and we thought this is a great mix of waterfront and green space, and the Children’s Museum is here, and there’s all this new retail and dining and they’re building, and we thought this would be a really fun place to move to.”
He said he’s always been interested in the way things change in a neighborhood and new ideas and experiences. “And certainly with my background in fashion and lifestyle, I’ve always been fascinated and a student of how brands can engage consumers, how they are creating passion in consumers and evoking loyalty, and the way in which brands, communities and neighborhoods are inspiring people to move there, to visit there, to work there, to play there.”
Consequently, he became curious about the philosophy and the company that was working on this project and connected with WS Development, which is heading it up. He saw there was an opportunity and explored it. “We realized over time, that for me, editorial and publishing and even consulting has always been about storytelling, in order to inspire, entertain, primarily to get people to try new things, to experience new things, to buy new things. The more we talked about the skill sets this will require — content creation, marketing, brand partnerships, activations, ambassadorships — these are the skill sets I have used over the last two decades at brands like InStyle or Conde Nast. The overlap is kind of fascinating. I look at this as an opportunity to tell stories in live 4D.”
Foxman said he will continue as a contributing editor to Vanity Fair, and will continue to write for outlets including Architectural Digest and Maisonette.
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