‘Totokaelo’ Opens Jumbo Pop-Up Space this Friday at 190 Bowery

Posted on: October 4th, 2017 at 5:12 am by

There is major activity happening inside the ground level of the Germania Bank Building on the Bowery. Final preparations are underway to transform this massive space into a temporary fashion emporium.

As previously reported, the owner of 190 Bowery, Aby Rosen, signed an abbreviated lease over the summer with Totokaelo to take 8,918 square-feet. It officially opens to the public on Friday.

The sprawling store won’t be here for long, though, with a stated expiration of March 2018.

Totokaelo was founded in Seattle in 2008, and peddles designer lines including Acne Studios, Comme des Garçons, Jil Sander, and Proenza Schouler. The brand also has a location in nearby SoHo at 54 Crosby Street.

The New York Times had more yesterday:

The first floor is high-ceilinged and airy. Echoes of the bank lobby that occupied it more than a century ago are still there: The walls are a marble the color of desert dust, and uneven mosaic tiles line the floor. Polished wood panels cover the rest of the floor, remnants of a basketball court that Mr. Maisel installed.

Head to the basement and you will pass an elongated cage with a square-shaped swinging door. Its purpose is a mystery. The downstairs is darker, more stark — a cross between a dungeon and an asylum out of a B-horror flick. “Down here you’ll find things a bit more raw and broken,” Ms. Schley said.

A large bank vault with a four-door layer of protection and a cage around it dominates the space. Inside, shoes are displayed on metal shelves that attach magnetically to the walls.

Rosen’s RFR Realty purchased the landmark Germania Bank Building from photographer Jay Maisel three years ago for $55 million. Until now, the Great Bowery – a consortium of creative agencies – had been the only commercial occupant in the building.

Importing Totokaelo to 190 Bowery is seemingly a stop-gap measure in the absence of a permanent occupant. RFR Realty still seeks a commercial tenant willing to cough up the full $2 million per year for the retail space.

Recent Stories

‘Parkour Expo’ this Weekend Atop Seward Park High School

Parkour enthusiasts take note: Move NYC is headed to the Lower East Side this weekend. Nomadic outfit The Movement Creative is setting up a temporary rooftop playground, composed of of 8,000lbs of metal pipe, joints, and wooden beams atop the New Design High School (nee Seward Park High School at 350 Grand Street). Movement Creative […]

66 Clinton Street Sees New Life as 8-Story Luxury Development

Two months ago, New Life of New York City sold its flagship building at 66 Clinton Street and relocated to Alphabet City. Next up, luxury living. Just last month, the nascent landowners – Vault Development and TLM Equities – filed paperwork with Department of Buildings for the new development. Set to rise eight stories, the […]

Mayor de Blasio’s Flawed Jail Plan Leaves Inmates Further from Home [Op-Ed]

As summer winds down, we head ever-closer to the city-wide ULURP hearings on the proposed borough-based prison plan. All said and done, it’s been one big farce the past several months, through various public hearings in four boroughs held by city agencies (save the respective community boards). At each turn, neighborhoods rallied to oppose Mayor […]

The Ten-Story Development Now Atop the East Village’s Last Gas Station

It was the neighborhood’s last gas station to shutter. Now, it’s a ten-story luxury development. Foundation was first poured for 11 Avenue C way back in December 2016. The timeline upon its conception two years earlier was a fourteen-month construction period. As of this week, the superstructure is pretty much topped out. Rotwein + Blake […]

Eldridge Street’s Formosa Cafe Folds

Casual Taiwanese establishment, Formosa Cafe, is finished. The Eldridge Street hangout hung it up earlier this month. Token tombstone signage now hangs from the cartoony marquee. The Lower East Side location is survived by an outpost in Sunset Park, Brooklyn. Formosa debuted at 34 Eldridge back in May 2015. It was a large, accommodating space […]