Armani, Ports 1961, Paul Smith Open Shopping Hot Spots

The floors of the new Armani/5th Avenue Emporium are connected by a staircase made in Italy.

The floors of the new Armani/5th Avenue emporium are connected by a surreal staircase made in Italy.

Spring has awakened our senses, and we’re ready to emerge from semi-hibernation into the urban landscape to forage for fashion. Here’s a rundown of three exciting new places for retail therapy.

Armani/5th Avenue

Amid a galaxy of stars such as Victoria Beckham, Robert DeNiro and Leonardo DiCaprio, Giorgio Armani opened Armani/5th Avenue in Manhattan at Fifth Avenue and 56th Street. The four-level emporium was designed by architects Doriana and Massimiliano Fuksas and features a stunning, surreal Escher-meets-Dalí staircase. Here, we can find almost anything Armani under the sun — including women’s fashion and accessories, Armani/Casa, Armani jeans and EA7 sportswear. (We also took a peek at menswear since we were feeling very Julia Roberts, circa 1990 Golden Globes.) Speaking of stars, at the helm of third-floor restaurant/bar Armani Ristorante, you’ll find chef Lorenzo Viani, whose Tuscan seaside establishment Ristorante Lorenzo has a sought-after Michelin star.

Ports 1961

The second U.S. location of Ports 1961, which recently opened on 3 Ninth Avenue in New York City’s Meatpacking District, was three years in the making — and worth the wait. Designed by architect Michael Gabelleni, the shop incorporates scrims with projected images and floating Lucite shelves as well as warm walnut floors and handmade carpets. A skylight allows natural light to illuminate the retail floor, the second-level event/art space and designer Tia Cibani’s third-floor studio. The building’s design complements, rather than rivals, the garments within; we can’t imagine Cibani’s innovative, globally inspired creations capable of fading into any background.

Paul Smith

British designer Paul Smith chose 46–50 Geary St. for his San Francisco boutique, which opened a few weeks ago. Among the eclectic interior elements that includes midcentury modern furnishings, a massive illuminated globe and mahogany paneling reclaimed from a 19th-century bank, you’ll find Smith’s unique blend of classic looks with modern twists for both genders. We love his use of gingham this season in the Paul Smith Blue and X women’s collections, as well as the elegantly chic and simple items of the Black label. Shoppers also can peruse the shop for home décor items, books and curios.

We love that each space is so thoughtfully planned to the tiniest detail as an extension of the designer and fashions. Do you think that the décor and amenities enhance your shopping experience?

Photo credit: Ramon Prat

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