Charming Charlie-Manhattan

Must See NYC Retailers in 2016

The National Retail Federation annual meeting convened last week with much discussion about the myriad of  headwinds facing retailers in 2016. Amidst the challenges of shifting consumer behavior, harnessing technology advancements, and unpredictable weather patterns that many retailers are grappling with, smart merchants are finding solutions in the design, product offers and customer service at their physical stores. It’s enlightening to see those who’ve developed innovative and fun shopping environments. This map, provided by the Retail Design Institute, is a guide to visiting a host of such retailers in Manhattan and Brooklyn. The list ranges from European designers such as Valentino on Madison Ave to Lowe’s Home Improvement on the Upper West Side to various Soho shops with a fresh approach to selling designer sportswear (Totokaelo), socks (Stance), footwear (Melissa) and more.


A standing-room-only crowd gathered at the Retails BIG Show EXPO stage Monday morning for the 2016 New York City Virtual Store Tour. Moderated by James Farnell, international president of the Retail Design Institute and creative director of brand experience for Little, the session featured video case histories narrated by Nick Stowe, CEO of watchmaker Nixon; Chris Dieringer, principal solution/portfolio manager for the retail technology division ofMicrosoft; and Jonathan Luster, vice president of market and concept development for Lowe’s.

The tour itself was comprised of 34 New York-based retailers, selected by the Retail Design Institute and located in various Manhattan neighborhoods (Lincoln Square, Lenox Hill, Midtown, Greenwich Village, SoHo, Tribeca and Wall Street) as well as Brooklyn. The digital map is available at; virtual tourists can follow along on Instagram and Twitter with the hashtags #retailsafari and #nrf16.