When I heard that Ralph Lauren was going to move the women’s and home collections out of the old Rhinelander Mansion on 876 Madison Ave, I was devastated. That gorgeous stairwell, the high ceilings, the history, the beauty… all made the perfect backdrop for Ralph’s home collections. I still remember being in the store to soak it up one last time as I mourned the upcoming move.
Little did I know what was in store. Naturally, Ralph Lauren knows exactly what he is doing… The new Neoclassical mansion at 888 Madison Avenue directly across the street is the perfect feminine complement to the handsome Rhinelander Mansion. In fact, the layout and stairwell create a mirror image to the men’s store. The interior design is pure elegance- French Rococo style, light colors, limestone, gorgeous molding details and ironwork, mirrors, a feeling of history with inspired touches of cutting edge technology. Ralph Lauren is pure genius.
He was right. Women did deserve a more feminine backdrop.
He gave women the she-space to that gorgeous he-space across the street.
And the Ralph Lauren Home collections sit beautifully in and around the women’s collections.
Classic meets contemporary better than ever over here at the newer store.
Thank goodness he didn’t use the existing building to do so. Of course he wouldn’t, what was I thinking?
The beautiful fixtures and black and white photography keep everything looking so light and feminine. There are so many details to take in. The lighting is impressive, the iron work is incredible, as is the molding- no detail is spared. Obviously by the time I got to this stairwell, I was completely over the notion that the Rhinelander stairwell could not be matched. Well played, Ralph.
This incredible stairwell is said to be inspired by those of the Astor and Duke residences. Is it possible that Coco Chanel’s Paris apartment might have offered a little influence?
Coco Chanel’s stairwell… one of the many beautiful things about her Paris apartment. See more photos and interesting Coco Chanel factoids in this blog post, where I found the above photo: http://thecoveteur.com/Coco_Apartment
The shoe salon, just inside the women’s flagship store, with high def Ralph Lauren fashion shows to inspire visitors through the rest of the store, just when you want to sit and relax to try on a fabulous pair of boots. Wow. If you have other plans for the day when you set foot into this store, they might be forgotten at this point… you might find yourself thinking “I’ll send for my things” or ” I could live here….” as you become thoroughly engulfed in Ralph Lauren’s vision. He managed to seamlessly blend historical glamour with breathtakingly modern style and technology. He is amazing. Next time I go to New York I want to stay there.
All photos by Courtney Price unless otherwise stated.
If you want to read about the original Ralph Lauren Flagship location, still in use across the street, it makes for an interesting story…
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