Farewell Pearl River! 8 Stylish Bargains to Snag Before the Chinese Shopping Emporium Closes vogue.com by LYNN YAEGER APRIL 10, 2015 4:40 PM
It is December 24, and it is snowing. Too late for Internet shopping, too sad to look for gifts at Duane Reade! You’re broke, but you are a person of taste, and refinement, and people expect a great present from you! What do you do?
For 23 years, New Yorkers have found the answer to this dilemma at Pearl River Mart in SoHo, three floors crammed with velvet slippers, brocade change purses, miso soup spoons, painted chests, parasols, paper fans, and things you never knew you—or your friends—wanted: a set of penguin tea cups? A cartoon dog lamp?
Or maybe it isn’t Christmas, it is spring-cleaning time, and you are in desperate need of something to hide the junk that has accumulated in your studio apartment. (Well, that is my idea of spring cleaning . . . ) Pearl River has a room divider, and it’s six feet tall and gorgeous and printed with graceful bamboo stalks. And just because you love them, and they put you in the mood for the Met’s upcoming exhibition, “China: Through the Looking Glass,” why not blow $16.50 on a pair of satin slip-ons decorated with dragons?
Now this wonderful emporium, a beloved New York City landmark, is closing, another victim of skyrocketing neighborhood rents. Believe it or not, their current rent of more than $100,000 a month is purportedly being raised to more than half a million dollars. (Who could imagine that lacquer chopsticks and bamboo bird cages would add up to $100,000 a month?)
The Pearl River website is still alive and kicking, and store owners say they are searching for another location. Which is a very good thing—you never know when you will just have to have a take-out-container-shaped purse, or a scarlet lantern, or maybe—splurge!—a $295 handmade gong with a mallet. Bang it slowly: RIP, Pearl River in SoHo.
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