NEW YORK — As any Apple store shopper or Philip Johnson fan can attest, all-glass cubes are an easy sell.
Perhaps with that in mind, the London-based consulting agency Edit 151 is bringing its trunk show concept to one of New York’s Midtown cubes at 432 Park Avenue.
Architect Rafael Viñoly helped realize the spindly skyscraper, which is one of Macklowe Properties’ prized locations, resting in the high-rent district between East 56th and 57th Streets. At 1,396 feet, it is also the tallest residential tower in North and South America, according to founder and chairman Harry Macklowe. The building was designed with the architect from the inside out, and once the floor plans for 432 Park Avenue were developed, the pair decided that the most efficient way to put it together would be to create a square. Noting how The Cube’s equal sides attract the attention of pedestrians and others passing by in vehicular traffic along Park Avenue, Macklowe said, “This rather beautiful, graceful piece of architecture is just pretty to look at, and then your eyes drift up to the towers.”
If only temporarily, Edit 151 takes up residency at “The Cube” tonight with a preview party, followed by two days of by-appointment shopping. The extended hours — 10 a.m. until 9 p.m. — should appeal to harried Midtown workers, residents and shoppers alike. This will mark the first time the year-old Edit 151 has hosted a trunk show in the U.S. And the trunk show location is housed in a well-heeled address where only 11 apartments are still available. Americans comprise 35 percent of the current occupants international ones account for 65 percent.
With 100 shoppers expected during the New York run, Edit 151 has about 800 units of ready-to-wear, accessories, fine jewelry and fragrances. Consumers will be able to check out 18 labels and meet select designers like Thierry Colson and Melissa Kaye. During tonight’s preview party, a portion of the proceeds will be donated to the Robin Hood Foundation. To add an element of art and interiors to the New York pop-up, ABC Carpet & Home will provide an assortment of rugs retailing from $8,000 to $35,000 that will be available to purchase as well, and Tom Dixon will be providing furniture as well. “It is to furnish the space but they are also available to purchase,” he said.
Moving forward, Edit 151 aims to schedule more trunk shows that will keep in step with clients’ social calendars and travel plans. With that in mind, the company is eyeing Gstaad, East Hampton, Monaco and Miami [during Art Basel] for next year’s stops. Regional partner Olympia Landeau noted that each trunk show will be customized to appeal to each respective crowd.
Edit 151 founders Line Samdal and Simon J. Sonar offer consumers’ pre-orders on seasonal collections, brand visibility in new markets, detailed feedback and other strategic services. Samdal said, “We felt from working for many years in the industry that retail is changing especially in luxury brands. We felt that all of these luxury brands are doing everything correctly but they are losing the human touch. We wanted to bring the designers directly in touch with the end customer and the target client because there is so much knowledge that is lost between the shop floor, the head office and the designing team. There is a lot of qualitative data that naturally gets lost.”
Given Edit 151’s temporary stay in New York, Macklowe mentioned how along with the 11 residential units that are up for sale, The Cube is available for a full-time institutional showroom or store along with the lower level concourse. And there are those remaining dozen apartments on the floors above. Asked if Alex Rodriguez and Jennifer are interested in an apartment at 432, as has been reported, Macklowe said, “Yes, it seems that way. I have not met her but I met him. He’s a very imposing man.”
While Macklowe is not an investor in Edit 151 in any way, he is a fan. “They’re young people with terrific ideas, tremendous enthusiasm. When you go over to see it, it’s kind of infectious. It’s wonderful to see,” he said.