Before you have a heart attack, Williams Sonoma is not going out of business. It’s just closing its Upper East Side store, with huge bargains on kitchen gear, including from such top brands as Cuisinart, All Clad and Nespresso, which are rarely discounted.
According to Madison Avenue Spy, everything at the store at 110 East 59th St., near Bloomingdale’s, is 40% off.
The Williams Sonoma store closing is the latest in the ongoing NYC saga of stores vs. greedy landlords, which has forced any number of local businesses and even chains to move, or shut their with doors entirely. There’s no word whether the store’s neighbor, Pottery Barn, will stay or go.
The New York Post reported in June that the national chain would not be renewing its lease. Prior to Pottery Barn and Williams Sonoma the space was occupied by the famed Fiorucci. It’s reported that the asking rent is now $400 per foot for the ground floor, which is about half of what rents are on Lexington.
Remember that FAO Schwarz and Crate & Barrel just shut down a few blocks west, at 59th and Fifth/Madison, because of rising rents.
Personal note: Greedy landlords are nothing new. My dad owned a store at 86th and Broadway. When his lease was up, the landlord wanted 4x the rent. My dad shuttered the store and retired. His store was cut into three smaller ones, each one paying more rent than he did. That was 25 years ago. So greedy landlords are nothing new.