March 15 2019  |  Retailers

International Shoppes to open first Yves St. Laurent store in North America

By Ronnie Lovler

International Shoppes (iShoppes) will open the first Yves St. Laurent (YSL) duty free store in North America when the shop makes its debut at New York’s Terminal One at John F. Kennedy International Airport later this month.

The YSL boutique is scheduled to open at the end of March - and join the already extensive offering that iShoppes is making available to passengers transiting through JFK’s Terminal 1.

In an exclusive interview with Americas Duty Free, iShoppes Vice President Scott Halpern said iShoppes is thrilled to be breaking ground with the YSL boutique at JFK.

“YSL is a wonderful brand,” Halpern said. “YSL is growing, and we look forward to being part of their aviation frontier. We have a lot of great luxury boutique partnerships already and this will enhance our assortment.”

The YSL store will occupy about 1,000 square feet. Halpern described it as “a full range boutique” which will offer travelers at T1 men and women’s fashion and accessories.

The YSL project is one of two iShoppes developments at JFK T1. The second part of the equation is the renovation of the 7,200 square feet beauty store which opened in 2017. “We are renovating approximately 25% of the store, bringing in new brands and upgrading visibility for existing brands,” Halpern said.

Halpern said the renovation is a result of iShoppes’ success to take over an adjoining area that had been occupied by another company. “We were able to win the space allowing us to break through the wall and have an additional entrance into the duty-free beauty store,” he said.

The renovations include creating an external pass thru boutique for Chanel, establishing a larger space for Christian Dior & Dior Backstage, and offering larger displays for SKII & Gucci, as well as bringing in newness for Le Lebo, Atelier, Two Face, and several other brands.

The beauty store renovations will be unveiled in four phases over the course of the year, Halpern said, with the first phase to open early to mid-May.

The upgrades at the beauty store, along with the YSL boutique opening, will make the high-profile iShoppes offerings at JFK’s T1, even more appealing.

The improvements come on the heels of what has already been an extensive expansion of iShoppes offerings at JFK in 2018. Late last year, iShoppes opened an upgraded 5,800 square-foot liquor, tobacco, confectionery & luxury store, across the way from the 7,200 square foot beauty store, which is primed to become even more appealing.

We are bringing a lot of newness. We have seen what’s working and not working. We are always looking to reinvent the wheel to meet consumer demand,“ Halpern said.

Halpern and his partner, Matt Greenbaum, are the third generations to be at the helm of this family-owned business, started at what was then Idlewild Airport (now JFK) in 1961. In addition to JFK, iShoppes also has stores at Boston Logan International Airport, Bradley International Airport BWI International Thurgood Marshall Airport, Washington-Dulles International Airport and Rhode Island Green Airport in Providence, Rhode Island.

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