Commercial Real Estate & Advisory

Ready-to-Wear Report – Rock & Republic Flagship Coming to SoHo

By Sharon Edelson | September 16, 2008

NEW YORK – Rock & Republic is planting its retail flag in SoHo.

The cult denim brand plans to open a two-level 2,800-square-foot flagship in the spring at 102 Greene Street between Broome and Spring Streets. The flagship will occupy the first level and lower level of a three-story residential building.
“We looked for years for the right location in New York,” said Rock & Republic’s president, Andrea Berbholtz. “We’re really excited about the space, which was an artist’s studio. It’s an historic landmark building.”

Rock & Republic’s first freestanding store will open in November on Robertson Boulevard in Los Angeles. The following month, a unit will bow at the Wynn Hotel and Resort in Las Vegas. “We’re talking about doing things in the Middle East and London,” Bernholtz said. “We have shop-in-shops at Harrods and Harvey Nichols in London and Tsum in Russia. We’d like to expand our retail. We’ve narrowed it down to two neighborhoods in London.”

The Culver City, Calif.-based Rock & Republic has been focusing an increasing amount of attention on Manhattan. Its efforts started in 2006 when it abandoned fashion week in Los Angeles in favor of New York.

The brand is expanding its offerings beyond denim, activewear, children’s wear and maternity. The company in 2006 introduced handbags, footwear and eyewear. In July, Rock & Republic unveiled a 116-item cosmetics collection. Now the company is expanding its ready-to-wear collection with one-of-a-kind items and special prints, which will be available only in its stores. There’s also a collaboration in the works with Maria Buccellati, wife of the jeweler, Andrea. “We’re doing cashmere with [Buccellati’s] MB Couture and swimwear with MB Beach,” Bernholtz said.

Greene Street attracts “classic luxury brands like Louis Vuitton side by side with hip labels like A Bathing Ape, which primarily sells sneakers, though at prices close to Louis Vuitton’s, and home furnishings emporiums like Moss,” said CHRISTOPHER OWLES, a principal of Sinvin Realty, who represented Rock & Republic in the deal.