When it was first settled by the Dutch in the 17th century, Lower Manhattan was a hub for trade between the indigenous Lenape tribe and new European settlers. Though its bartering days are over, the neighborhood remains an important point of commerce. Lower Manhattan is not only home to landmarks like Wall Street and the Fraunces Tavern Museum but retail giants like Century 21 and shopping hubs like Brookfield Place. Upscale boutiques dot the streets in between. To find out more about the stores that make this historic area a shopping destination, read on.
10 Corso Como
1 Fulton St.
This legendary shop was founded in Italy by gallerist Carla Sozzani, sister of famous Italian journalist Franca Sozzani. The NYC version is enormous, encompassing a restaurant, art gallery and boutique. You’ll find the usual luxury labels like Gucci, Balenciaga and Alaïa alongside installations from artists like Helmut Newton. Exclusive collaborations and a sleek design, accented with black, silver and white fixtures, make the Milanese import a standout.
230 Vesey St.
Enjoy Hudson River views while you flip through the racks at dozens of high-end stores including Bottega Veneta, Louis Vuitton and Joie. This expansive mall features a picturesque atrium with real palm trees, perfect for snapping sunset selfies. During breaks from shopping, check out the art space for performances, tons of food options and a waterfront terrace where seasonal activities like yoga classes and tennis matches take place.
22 Cortlandt St.
Four floors of deeply discounted designer duds await at this flagship that’s been in Lower Manhattan for over 50 years. Clothing, shoes, accessories, home furnishings and cosmetics are discounted up to 75 percent, even from labels like Tom Ford, Celine and Dolce & Gabbana. It’s adjacent sister store, Next Century, skews younger with a more curated collection from up-and-coming, established and vintage designers. Think Moschino, Raf Simons and Fenty by Rihanna.
189 Front St.
Axl Rose, Steven Tyler and Lady Gaga are all fans, donning custom leather jackets or vests from this upscale label. Inspired by NYC’s punk rock scene of the ’70s and ’80s, the New York City–based designer is sought out for his bespoke creations, often made from distressed leather. The brand also offers painted and studded ready-to-wear pieces that can run a price tag of $2,000. Other apparel includes distressed T-shirts in black and white.
1 Centre St.
Located in the architectural gem that is the Manhattan Municipal Building, CityStore is stocked with NYC-themed mementos such as subway map socks, a parking ticket magnet and replica taxicab medallions. Peruse official NYPD, FDNY, DSNY and Parks Department merchandise, as well as postcards, clothing and books about NYC.
16 Fulton St.
Known for her printed dresses, lacy tops and girly yet edgy swimwear, Cynthia Rowley opened her second NYC boutique in the Seaport District. Rowley’s wetsuit (a cross between a bikini and a wetsuit) has been a staple in her collection since it debuted in 2012. Shop different patterned versions of it here, as well as ready-to-wear pieces and products from brands Rowley backs—Goop, Maisonette and Manhattan Portage among them.
21 Fulton St.
This luxury eyeglass brand prides itself on high-quality materials and innovative designs, influenced by frames popular in the 1950s through ’80s. Materials include titanium, 18-karat gold and light Japanese acetate. Find regular glasses and sunglasses at this location, which is decorated in muted tones of gray, black and white.
4 World Trade Center
Modeled after the European style of open-air grocery shopping, Eataly is your base for all things Italian. Equal parts market, food hall and scuola, Eataly Downtown offers high-quality products for sale like olive oil, cheese, pasta and vinegar as well as multiple restaurants for dining or takeout. If you’d rather make the pasta yourself, stop by Foodiversitá; classes range from bread making to wine tasting.
15 Broad St.
While Brookfield Place has its fair share of luxury stores, including an Hermés Parfumerie, this store stands apart. Located directly across from the New York Stock Exchange, the upscale French boutique carries its coveted line of clothing, accessories and, of course, silk scarves and ties. The major draw here is the array of the brand’s most coveted item, the classic Birkin bag. Admire them all you want, but note that some of these bags have a waiting list for buyers.
Pasanella & Son Vintners
115 South St.
Each wine bottle here—and there are more than 400—is carefully selected by the staff. Owner Marco Pasanella, whose family hails from Italy, prides himself on a friendly shopping experience for customers and displays cards with information on the wines as well as recipes that go along with certain varieties. Most of the bottles here are made by small, family-owned vineyards. A tasting room that opens to a private garden enhances the intimate shopping experience. Spirits and wine accessories round out the selection.
SJP by Sarah Jessica Parker
93 South St.
Known for her role as shoe-loving Carrie Bradshaw in Sex and The City, Sarah Jessica Parker extends her devotion to footwear off-screen. The actress-designer’s collection features fun, cute and affordable heels and flats. Each pair is handmade in Tuscany and features a grosgrain ribbon detail, which pays homage to her childhood. The shop’s flower-toned furniture was selected by SJP herself.
Westfield World Trade Center
185 Greenwich St.
Built inside the World Trade Center Transportation Hub’s bright-white Oculus, Westfield World Trade Center comprises over 100 stores that range from apparel and footwear to tech and cosmetics. Brands include Apple, Sephora, Dior Beauty Boutique, Kate Spade and Montblanc. This one-of-a-kind space hosts special events and a number of restaurants, too.