Original NYC Soho Store Renews Engagement with one of New York’s Most Vibrant Local Communities
“A New Tokyo in Soho” is the theme of the new UNIQLO store that will be unveiled on September 2 in Soho. Japanese apparel retailer UNIQLO opened its first global flagship store in 2006 with the concept “From Tokyo to Soho,” and after ten years, renews its engagement with one of New York’s most vibrant local communities. Through the re-modeled store, UNIQLO will once again bring the very latest in Tokyo creativity, innovation and shopping experiences to Soho.
(In addition to Soho, UNIQLO occupies a prominent location on 5th Avenue and 53rd Street, and on 34th Street. The 5th Avenue and 34th Street stores opened in October 2011.)
Renovation work at UNIQLO Soho began in July and will continue through the end of August. The store will close from August 22 and will re-open to customers on September 2.
The renovated store will feature multiple shop-in-shop areas, each telling a story that highlights UNIQLO LifeWear and the company’s passion for innovation. The shop promoting performance items such as Ultra Light Down and Jogger Pants will focus on functionality, while another will celebrate the art of design, emphasizing the care and attention UNIQLO dedicates to fabrics like cashmere and the patterns of flannel. A new shop will bring Japanese urban style together with Soho street style, through classic items like denim and oxford shirts. In addition, this shop will present the best of Japanese styling through a special partnership with Popeye magazine, Japan’s iconic men’s fashion and lifestyle print publication.
“Introducing the UNIQLO brand in the U.S. and opening the very first global flagship store in Soho in 2006 were important milestones in the company’s plans to expand internationally. During the past ten years, Soho has evolved as an important hub of design, creativity and art, and UNIQLO too has grown in the community,” said Hiroshi Taki, UNIQLO U.S.A. CEO. “‘A New Tokyo in Soho’ symbolizes a celebration of our first ten years and our commitment to deepen our roots in the community over many years to come. By engaging with the neighborhood in new and exciting ways, we wish to contribute to the next phase of Soho’s growth.”
In honor of Soho’s rich artistic history, UNIQLO will engage with its neighborhood through regular events around cultural moments. The store’s mezzanine level will work as an exhibition space, evoking images of a Soho artist’s loft and featuring products like SPRZ NY (Surprise New York)**, a collaboration between UNIQLO and New York City’s Museum of Modern Art that gives access to iconic artists such as Andy Warhol, Keith Haring, and Jean-Michel Basquiat. In May 2013, UNIQLO became a multi-year, corporate sponsor of MoMA, home to one of the world’s greatest collections of modern and contemporary art. At that time, UNIQLO began its sponsorship of the Friday night free admission program, which is known as “UNIQLO Free Friday Nights.” Since the start of the partnership, over one million visitors have enjoyed free admission at MoMA.
(In March 2014, UNIQLO launched SPRZ NY (Surprise New York), a new global project featuring a collection of modern art-inspired fashion products that are intended to surprise New York and the world. In partnership with MoMA, the second floor of the Fifth Avenue store was remodeled to resemble a museum, with special areas for each artist and framed displays of T-shirts and other items. In another first, Starbucks opened an outlet at the location, creating a space to drink coffee and enjoy art. The products resulting from the partnership are today available at UNIQLO stores worldwide.)
UNIQLO Soho will also partner with local stores and restaurants, and the company will extend its relationships with local non-profit organizations such Free Arts NYC and municipal agencies, including the NYC Department of Homeless Services. UNIQLO already collaborates with the NYC Department of Homeless Services throughout the city by donating winter clothes to underprivileged youth as part of A Warm Gesture program, in addition to providing other clothing donations, art and job-experience workshops.
In September 2014, UNIQLO began its quarterly T-shirt making workshop in partnership with Free Arts NYC and the NYC Department of Homeless Services. For these workshops, UNIQLO invites up to 50 children who are living in the city’s homeless shelters to the Fifth Avenue store to learn about the lives and works of artists who are featured in the SPRZ NY collection. At the same time, children create their own works of art on T-shirts, guided by professional art educators from Free Arts NYC and assisted by UNIQLO volunteers.
To learn more about “A New Tokyo in Soho,” visit http://www.uniqlo.com/us/uniqlo-soho.