Manolo Blahnik will soon have a new Manhattan home — a double-fronted store at 717 Madison Ave. that will be designed by architect David Thomas, in collaboration with founder Manolo Blahnik and group CEO Kristina Blahnik.
An announcement is expected today.
The store, which will offer the men’s and women’s collections, is set to open in the spring and will replace the brand’s smaller unit, at 31 W. 54th St., which recently closed. Thomas was the architect who designed the Manolo boutique at the Palais Royal in Paris, which opened in June.
The move to Madison Avenue is the latest in a wave of changes sweeping the company and follows the termination earlier this year of a longtime deal with U.S. President George Malkemus. As reported, Manolo Blahnik plans to bring its North American business in-house as of Jan. 1.
Kristina Blahnik said the new flagship on Madison Avenue “is the latest in a series of key investments that we are making to ensure that we fulfill the potential of the Manolo Blahnik brand in North America.
“Our U.S. customer is among the most discerning and knowledgeable in the world. This new store will allow us the opportunity to uphold our promise to those customers as we strive to exceed their expectations in quality, creativity and service.”
Manolo Blahnik said that New York was where his journey began. “Without guidance from the legendary Diana Vreeland, we wouldn’t be where we are today. New York has always evoked a great sense of excitement for me, a city of endless possibilities. So it is an honor for me to open on Madison Avenue, an exquisite location, which I remember fondly from our formative years.”
Earlier this year, the company named Andrew Wright as president of Manolo Blahnik Americas, alongside a team of luxury execs.
In April, the company vowed to put “significant strategic investment” behind its North American operations as it prepared to take control of business in the region after 37 years.
At the time, Kristina Blahnik said she was looking forward to what lies ahead. “These are very exciting times for Manolo Blahnik. The U.S. and Canada are a core part of our business, which we are fully committed to.”