Fifth Avenue and East 57th Street in New York City share first place as the worldâ€™s most expensive retail location in this yearâ€™s edition of Main Streets Across the World, an annual report by Cushman & Wakefield Healey & Baker. Amsterdam´s Kalverstraat makes 18th spot. Europe has shown the biggest regional increases in retail rents, with Porto in Portugal taking top spot.
With rents per square metre at US$7,535 per annum, the New York retail destination that stretches from 52nd to 58th on Fifth Avenue and then along East 57th Street to where it meets Madison Avenue is 20 per cent more expensive than Parisâ€™ Avenue des Champs ElysÃ©es, which is in second place. Meanwhile, rents on Madison Avenue, at US$6,997 per square metre, were the fastest growing in the US, showing an increase of 25 per cent.
Main Streets Across the World 2002 shows the results of monitoring rental levels in 221 key shopping destinations in 44 countries around the world between June 2001 and June 2002. The least expensive of the worldâ€™s 44 most expensive retail locations is the Latvian capital of Riga - a retailersâ€™ bargain compared with New York, with annual rents at a mere US$420 per square metre.
David Gialanella, Executive Vice-President, National Retail Services in Cushman & Wakefieldâ€™s New York World Headquarters, said: 'Despite the events of 9/11 and the slowing US economy, the top areas of New York retail have experienced improved fortunes in 2002. This is against a fall in demand for retail space in secondary areas.
'The key Manhattan streets of Fifth Avenue, East 57th and Madison Avenue have enjoyed a renaissance as the world-class destination for the big names of international luxury retail,' he added.
The junction of East 57th and Fifth Avenue is one of the worldâ€™s most famous shopping spots. One corner is taken up by the new Louis Vuitton flagship store, which opens in 2003, while the three other corners are occupied by Tiffanyâ€™s, Bvlgari and Van Cleef & Arpels.
On Fifth Avenue, new names this year include Boucheron and De Beers. Existing brands to commit to major expansions and relocations in Fifth Avenue include Asprey & Garrard, Ermenegildo Zegna and FaÃ§onnable. And East 57th has become home to Christian Dior and Jil Sander, and has also seen the expansion of Burberry.
Madison Avenue was the choice for Swarovskiâ€™s flagship store and has seen French-style US luxury retailer Pierre Deux triple the size of its store on the Avenue. In addition, Graff, Breguet, Jean-Paul Gaultier, DiModolo and Gucci have arrived on Madison Avenue.
On a worldwide basis, the location with the fastest rental growth between June 2001 and June 2002 is in central Kuwait City, with a rise of 180 per cent. This is due to the opening of the countryâ€™s first western-standard malls for a number of years. Rents in the traditional retail areas have remained largely unchanged.
In the Americas, the biggest rise is Oscar Freire Jardins shopping centre in SÃ£o Paulo, with rents rising 48 per cent; in Asia, Seoulâ€™s Kangam Station, 41 per cent; and in Europe, in the Portuguese city of Porto, Avenida de Boavista, 34 per cent. The biggest falls, of up to 75 per cent, are witnessed in Argentina, hit by continuing economic crisis.
After the Middle East and Africa region, Europe has shown the biggest regional increases in retail rents, with growth of around 3 per cent between June 2001 and June 2002, rising to 6 per cent for the Euroland countries.
David Hutchings, Cushman & Wakefield Healey & Bakerâ€™s Head of European Research, comments: 'A shortage of the right-sized retail units offering the right dimensions has been a real spur for pushing up rents in the more mature markets of Europe. This has been despite the economic slowdown which has reduced demand and alleviated some of the acute space pressures seen a year or two ago.'
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(source: Cushman Wakefield)