Spanish Footwear Company ‘Camper’ Laces up for 221 Bowery

Posted on: August 9th, 2016 at 5:00 am by
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When Chair Up packed its bags for a new retail space around the corner on Delancey Street, chatter on the block indicated that a shoe store of some kind was opening in its stead. It only grew latter as time went on, yet not much was otherwise known. Until today.

It’s time to lace up.

As the Bowery mid-section (i.e. South of Houston) succumbs to hyper-gentrification – condos, hotels, and galleries- the corporate brands are starting to follow. In this case, word on the street is that it’s Camper.

The contemporary footwear company – headquartered in Inca, Spain – planted a flag shortly after the departure of Chair Up. But it might be a minute before any real progress is measured. Plans for the purported new store remain in the Department of Buildings purgatory. Four different applications related to the space carry a “disapproved” status.

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It’s also worth noting that Camper already has a downtown presence, currently with a location at 110 Prince Street in SoHo.

Installing an international retailer here makes sense. After all, this building is owned by Joseph Betesh who arguably owns more buildings on the Bowery than any other. His track record seems to confirm an MO of ridding longtimers in favor of the new – retail or residential (e.g. Bank of America at the old Diamond Corner).

Camper was founded by Lorenzo Fluxà Rosselló in 1975 after inheriting a shoe factory from his father. They apparently didn’t make inroads into the American market until 2000.

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