J. Press Flagship Closing

by Harry Sheff

J. PressJ. Press will close its Madison Avenue flagship store in New York later this month. CEO Yuki Okita said in a statement that the retailer has been searching for a new space in the neighborhood since spring 2013 after word that the building’s owners would not renew retail leases to make space for renovations.

“Our goal at this moment is to reopen our flagship by spring of 2015 at the latest,” Okita said. “If we can find the right place, we might be able to open this year.”

J. Press opened its first store on the grounds of Yale University in New Haven, Conn. in 1902. Its first New York store, on Wall Street, opened in 1912 and moved around a number of times over the decades. It has been in its current location at Madison and 47th Street—a few blocks north of the Brooks Brothers and Paul Stuart flagship stores—since 2007.

Okita added, “As for the Bleecker Street York Street store, we do not plan to mix the J. Press heritage line within that store, but there is a possibility that we might consider opening made to measure service to continue serving our existing customers.”

J. Press York Street

J. Press opened the J. Press York Street store on Bleecker Street in the West Village about a year ago. The York Street brand, designed by brothers Shimon and Ariel Ovadia of Ovadia & Sons, serves a younger customer with trimmer fits.

Onward Kashiyama, J. Press’s Japanese licensee, acquired the company from the Press family in 1986. The company currently operates J. Press stores in New Haven, Boston and Washington, D.C. as well as Japan.