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Neiman Marcus dazzles with technology, services at Manhattan’s Hudson Yards

BY Marianne Wilson

Neiman Marcus is making a big bet on the Big Apple with the opening of its first-ever store in Manhattan, on Friday, March 15.

The luxury retailer will anchor The Shops & Restaurants at Hudson Yards — the expansive new complex on Manhattan’s fare West Side that has been called the largest private real estate development in the U.S. by square footage — with a three-story, 188,000-sq.-ft. flagship that promises the latest in “luxury fashion, digital innovation and delectable dining.”

Housed on floors five, six and seven of the center, the store is Neiman’s fifth largest and most innovative to date. It boasts a number of new services and experiences, ranging from a performance stage (“Neiman Marcus Live”) for events and concerts to three dining venues to a personal shopping suite for women decorated to resemble a luxury apartment. A demo kitchen will offer events with chefs, tastings and mixology classes.

Technology is used to create a seamless and more engaging shopping experience throughout the space. Over 60 Videri screens are located around the store, broadcasting both promotional messages and real-time content. Digital directories, 11 in all, are located at both store entrances and in the customer service area. The directories have an intuitive interface that provides customers with a quick search of departments, vendor locations, in-store events, and promotions. Mobile POS is available throughout, along with traditional checkouts. And to optimize associates’ time on the sales floor, the employees are outfitted with a wireless headset (from Theatro) that connects them to an artificial intelligence-enabled device with voice recognition requests.

In other tech enhancements, Rockbot audio services allow shoppers to modify the store’s music playlist like a digital jukebox, letting them choose a song from a pre-set playlist or vote on a queue of upcoming songs via the Rockbot app. Digital signage reveals what song is currently playing and what’s coming up next.

The fitting rooms in the contemporary and men’s areas are digitally-enabled (powered by AlertTech), with interactive touchscreens that allow shoppers to get help from associates and adjust the lighting to one of five settings. Customers can also check out directly from the fitting rooms.

The store also features a “digital styling lounge” where customers can connect with one of the retailer’s 50-plus stylists, who previously were available only online.

Other highlights of Neiman Marcus at Hudson Yards include:

• A customizable shop offering embroidery, painting, patchwork, distressing, and embellishments;

• Santana Leather Care

• The brand’s first Resurrection Vintage boutique;

• A Lucchese boot shop in a nod to the brand’s Texan heritage;

• A pop-up florist;

• Santana Leather Care, offering shoe shines and repairs;

• The BLVD beauty salon for blowouts, eyelash extensions; brow shaping, chemical peeling, hair removal and more;

• Beauty treatments rooms and spa services, including access to a LED LightStim bed, which is said to promote cell rejuvenation;

• A walk-up brow bar and a nail bar for quick specialty services;

• A Men’s Club Room featuring a private fitting room and styling experience; and

• New York City-themed shop with New York-logoed T-shirts, ceramics, glassware, handbags and more.

The food selections include:
• Fine dining in the Zodiac Room, which will feature customer favorites from Neiman’s 45 restaurants nationwide along with “innovative” culinary creations;

• Bar Stanley, named for the company’s legendary president and chairman Stanley Marcus, will offer lunch and dinner

• A café for quick snacks in Cook & Merchants; and

• A chocolate bar features chocolates from local New York chocolatiers.

Neiman Marcus said it collaborated with several companies on the design of the store, including Related, Janson Goldstein, and Avro|Ko, to create a space that connects the brand’s heritage and reputation for modern luxury with the vibrancy and texture of the new Hudson Yards neighborhood.

“We’re thrilled to be introducing Neiman Marcus Hudson Yards as a continuation of our strategy to transform the Neiman Marcus brand into a digital luxury platform,” said Geoffroy van Raemdonck, CEO of Neiman Marcus Group. “This store recognizes our brand’s history and heritage while adapting to how the next generation of luxury customers shop. Neiman Marcus Hudson Yards will be all about providing physical and digital experiences in a way not seen at other stores, creating a personal customer experience that is seamless and magical.”

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J.Parrott says:
Mar-14-2019 09:20 am

These innovations by Nieman Marcus are fantastic and what department stores should be doing to stay relevant. Many people say the mall is dead and they feel it is because malls are outdated format that customers no longer want to shop at. The real problem with malls is that the department stores that anchor most of them, and are supposed to be generating shopper traffic, have failed to innovate and evolve. Their inability to meet the needs of today’s customers has not only led to their own problems, but their lack of traffic is also bringing down the specialty shops too and often times the entire mall.

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