West Elm Relocates Its Headquarters & Opens Its 100th Retail Store

by | Aug 19, 2016 | Business


Headquartered in Brooklyn since 2002, West Elm opened its first store in DUMBO. With the mission of helping customers express their personal style at home, everything West Elm does is designed to make an impact in everyday life, from creating unique to affordable designs for modern living to its commitment to Fair Trade Certified, from to local and handcrafted products to community-driven in-store events and collaborations.

It was announced this week that West Elm is relocating its headquarters and opening its 100th retail store within the landmark Empire Stores, the new Brooklyn Bridge Park cultural complex along the East River. As an active partner in the restoration, West Elm helped lead conversations about how to best reinvent the late 19th century coffee roasting facility and warehouse, thereby reestablishing its active role in community life. The LEED Silver Certified building — incorporating architectural elements from the original structure including storied schist walls and arched brick windows — is expected to have seven floors of private and public spaces, including corporate offices, a rooftop park, restaurants, and retail stores.

“At our core, West Elm is a start-up Brooklyn brand. So we were happy to support our hometown by making an early commitment to Empire Stores as its anchor tenant. And we were fortunate to connect with the right development partner in Midtown Equities, who shared our vision and willingness to invest in our community,” said Jim Brett, president of West Elm. “The offices will also showcase our belief in design to impact, featuring handcrafted installations by local and global artisans who we are committed to supporting through our growth.”

Photo by Megan Swann for Jenna Bascom Photography

Photo by Megan Swann for Jenna Bascom Photography

West Elm opened its new headquarters with more than 300 in-house designers, merchants, planners and creative teams. The 97,650 square foot office, a showcase for Workspace, West Elm’s contract furniture line, reflects the brand’s core tenets of choice, community and consciousness:

● Choice: Workspace products and solutions offer a variety of aesthetic and functional options for shaping individual work environments.

● Community: Inspiring and innovative common spaces, from cross-functional staircases, to coffee and revitalizing bars, along with indoor and outdoor meeting areas that promote conversation, collaboration and creativity;

● Consciousness: Building a sense of place and purpose by including recycled materials from the original Empire Stores structure and nearly 170 handcrafted works commissioned from artisan partners around the globe.

“Our headquarters and new Brooklyn store further cements our hometown roots,” says Brett. “And Empire Stores sets the stage for West Elm and DUMBO to become the newest destination for New Yorkers and visitors alike to experience what makes our neighborhood special.”

Photo by Megan Swann for Jenna Bascom Photography

Photo by Megan Swann for Jenna Bascom Photography

The West Elm retail store at Empire Stores, which opened Aug. 18 at 8:00 AM, serves as a gathering spot for customers to shop unique designs at a great value, discover local New York-based makers and artisans, and connect with other members of the community over a cup of coffee or at a LOCAL pop up event. Like its headquarters, the store architecture and design aesthetic pays homage to the original warehouse, incorporating salvaged materials into its design features, from a uniquely patterned floor featuring reclaimed support columns to a mural of the Brooklyn Bridge made entirely of reclaimed pine. Additional store highlights include:

● A first look at new limited edition collaborations and the 2016 holiday assortment featuring ASPCA, Casper, Sonos, St. Jude Children’s Hospital and Whole Foods Market
● A LOCAL selection of 16 New York-based makers and artisans, including: Brooklyn illustrators Two Arms Inc, Lark and Raven LLC, offering up cheeky greeting cards and stationery, and In The Seam’s eccentric pillows inspired by photography
● West Elm Market, complete with a coffee shop operated by Brooklyn Roasting Company and a communal area to be used for socializing and workshops
● The Design Lab, offering complimentary design services to support customers in their journey to discover and express their personal style at home
● Smart speakers by Sonos, the best home sound system, in the store’s Loft

For up-to-date information on in-store promotions and events, customers are encouraged to “like” the West Elm Dumbo store on Facebook: www.facebook.com/westelmdumbo and follow the store on Instagram: @westelmdumbo.

Downtown Magazine