Must-See Times Square
by nycgo.com staff, 12/25/2012
Forever 21. Photo: Marley White
Really, Really Big Retail
Like almost everything else located in the area, Times Square's stores promise larger-than-life experiences—and they deliver. Take, for instance, the 1,700-square-foot MAC Cosmetics flagship. The exterior is illuminated in LED tiles, while its sleek interior features numerous makeup stations, touch-screen computers and many makeup artists working the floor.
As big as it is, the M.A.C. store is dwarfed by Forever 21's massive 90,000-square-foot location, which includes 151 fitting rooms and over 30 cash registers ringing up the brand's affordably priced merch. In addition to three floors of women's apparel, makeup and accessories, there's also a floor devoted to menswear—rare for the brand—and girls' clothing. Night owls, take note: the emporium is open until 1am.
Looking for more of a tropical experience? Try Quiksilver. The 42nd Street flagship's outdoor LED display features over 100 screens projecting scenes of surfers hanging ten, and the thematic decor continues inside. Surfboards line the ceiling, set against even more LED displays projecting footage of ocean waves. The 3,300-square-foot store is loaded with men's and women's apparel and accessories.
Fans of Hello Kitty, meanwhile, should head to the Sanrio store. The 1,200-square-foot boutique stocks all manners of items featuring the world's most famous Japanese cat, including luggage, towels and even a waffle maker (how else are you going to make Hello Kitty–shaped waffles?). Purchase limited-edition products here as well, including items from the Kimora Lee Simmons collection. The cute factor is just as obvious on the store's exterior, where a stars-and-stripes–clad Hello Kitty sits on the marquee, holding an apple.
By way of contrast, the minimalism at Muji is refreshing. Located in The New York Times building, this 4,350-square-foot space, which overlooks a tranquil garden, resembles a downtown loft. Its high ceilings and glass windows augment to the brand's restrained approach. The store stocks more than 2,000 quality products, ranging from stationery and colored pencils to furniture, clothing and bed linens.—Christina Parrella