As you probably know, Michaels is home to the Upper East Side of New York City, one of the most lively retail areas of Manhattan, known for its luxurious stores and oh-so stylish residents. Believe it or not, the Upper East Side has always been a vessel for retail and cultural expansion, even dating all the way back to the 1800s. The East River served as a means for transportation of both people, products, and ideas. The coast was booming with salesman and New Yorkers eager to make a living. While this commercial traffic was mainly made up of fish and other seafood goods for many years, the Upper East Side took a turn in the 1900s.

The Stylish History of the Upper East Side

Upon the completion and implementation of the Harlem Railroads in the early 1900s, the fashion retail market began to rise along the East River. Madison Avenue, where Michaels is located, found itself becoming home to nearly 100 fashion boutiques during this time period. Brands such as The Row and Hermes are currently located in some of the oldest standing retail buildings in the area. The river brought an eclectic group of people, including immigrants, who traveled far to reach New York and its hidden gems.

The Upper East Side has these residents to thank, as they brought a sense of culture and prestige that is hard to match in the other New York City neighborhoods. European immigrants brought furs and fine leathers to the village while American made businesses excelled in tailoring and luxury authentication. The Upper East Side became an homogenous blend of all types of luxuries and lifestyles, which is what continues to make the area so special to this day.

History of the Upper East Side

With years of history on the Upper East Side, Michael’s staff is well versed in all of the best locations and must sees in the area. For starters, you must visit the Metropolitan Museum of Art, located just a couple blocks from the store. Right next door to the Met is Central Park, which is absolutely beautiful at this time of year. Be sure to grab a bite to eat at Butterfields and sip your coffee on a bench in the park- you won’t regret it! Or simply take a stroll along Madison Avenue and window shop the best stores around- Michael’s (of course), Zadig & Voltaire, Lafayette 148, Gabriela Hearst and Aquazzura are just a few. Take time to admire the iconic architecture of the buildings and the lush greenery that is hard to find in other NYC neighborhoods. 

Something the Upper East Side is especially known for are its celebrity residents. The UES is home to people such as Sarah Jessica Parker, Rihanna, Drew Barrymore and Madonna-just to name a few. These fashionable ladies can be seen on the streets alongside paparazzi waiting to see what looks they will dawn everyday.

There are also countless Instagram and TikTok accounts to follow, such as @LadiesofMadisonAve  that document UES street style looks from everyday people. From watching these videos, it is clear that the fashion and culture is still alive and well in the neighborhood! Other fashion accounts we love to follow are @TheFashionGuitar@margaretzhang and @KitKeenan. And while not a fashion account but we love following @UESthings for all the best places to eat, drink, shop and hang out!

Today, brands continue to flock to the Upper East Side in hopes of connecting with the incomparable customer base that the local residents makes up. At Michael’s Luxury Consignment, we can attest that our Upper East Side customers are like family. We have a deep connection and personal bond with the shoppers who come in weekly to help support our local business. Community members here take pride in luxury, quality and care-which is something we, and all of the stores in the area, hope to provide everyday. It is an honor to uphold the traditions of commerce and community building in the historic Upper East Side of New York City.

August 31, 2023 — Michael's Manager

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