Monday, October 02, 2006

4 Seasons - Beverly Hills / Travel for Clothes!

OK, before disclose my next shopping tidbit I just have to say that if you ever get the chance to have someone else pay for you to stay at the Four Seasons - Beverly Hills - TAKE THEM UP ON IT. I am here now for my "day job" and was surprised shortly after checking in with a tray of chocolate covered strawberries and a bottle of evian (see low-budget phone photo>>). Oh joy. But I digress...

Oh I have so many pearls of wisdom, stories, triumphs and failures to share, but today's lesson in shopping is this:
Be Willing to Travel for Good Deals - As I mention in my Blog intro (see orange box), I learned this from my parents. My mother would travel to Seacaucus, NJ to get cool, different garb at LOW low prices. Although Seacaucus still brags multiple outlets and malls (Kenneth Cole being one of the best - also Calvin Klein, Jill Sander, YSL and more!), back in the day they were literally warehouses with no heat, cluttered with boxes and bins.

And ever the shopping adventurer, my father traveled to Aaron's on Fifth Avenue in Brooklyn to buy gifts for my mother and eventually me. And believe me, in the 70s and 80s this 'hood was not your trendy younger brother's Park Slope.

Ever the good daughter, I have kept up the family tradition. If you have a car or are willing to hop the bus, Seacaucus is very close to the City off route 3 right near the Lincoln Tunnel (but get directions, I always get lost!). On one of my more successful jaunts, I scored 3 pairs of Kenneth Cole shoes for a grand total of $90(!) -- I get complimented on all of them regularly.

As for Aaron's...well, after keeping up the family tradition for a decade and taking the 40+ minute ride on the snail's-pace R train for the sole purpose of visiting this exciting store in which I would spend 3 hours trying on at least 20 items, I am sad to report that Y2K has taken its toll. I visited a couple of weeks ago to find the store literally cut in half and the inventory quality and intrigue to be vastly diminished from its glory days...what happened to the days when I could buy black satin sequined Tahari trousers? What about the great deals on Barcelona Custo tops? A red velvet Italian made coat? My ghetto fabulous "Taurus" necklace? They are long gone my friends...and so am I. And the new bagel store across the street sucks too.

I have more to say on this topic (read: Woodbury Commons), but I will hold off until I can illustrate some of my recent successes visually.

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