Will displaying fantasy gifts lift Neiman Marcus’ Christmas sales?

Discussion
Dec 08, 2015

For the first time, Neiman Marcus is putting some of the extravagant items in its famed annual Christmas Book on public display. An exhibit of five items is taking place during the holiday season at the upscale Roosevelt Field Mall in Garden City, Long Island, where the chain is set to open a store next February.

The Fantasy Gifts, now in their 56th year, are individually curated and crafted by Hollywood celebrities, renowned artists, and fashion and jewelry designers from around the world.

The Fantasy Gifts exhibition will feature:

  • An Arch motorcycle and ride experience with Keanu Reeves, $150,000;
  • The Orphan Barrel Project of rare whiskeys and exclusive trip to Kentucky, $125,000;
  • World View space exploration voyage trip and luxury Arizona resort experience, $90,000;
  • Italy tour with acclaimed jewelry designer Ippolita Rostagno and Artemest craftsmen, $150,000;
  • Abigail and Paul Vogel one-of-a-kind Couture Diary, $10,000.

“Giving our Roosevelt Field shoppers a chance to view these gifts — beautifully presented in custom-designed cases — is something that has never been done before and is the perfect way to welcome in the holiday season,” said David Contis, president of Simon Malls, in a statement. “It’s also a glimpse into all that Neiman Marcus will add to the Long Island shopping scene when they open their Roosevelt Field location early next year.”

A portion of the proceeds from this year’s purchased gifts will be donated to the Heart of Neiman Marcus Foundation, which brings enriching art experiences to youth in communities nationwide.

“This is a way to generate excitement in the mall beyond the regular advertising that’s to be expected,” says Mimi Sterling, a spokesperson for Neiman Marcus, told Fortune. “This is to capitalize on the incredible holiday foot traffic at Roosevelt Field.”

Is openly displaying Neiman Marcus’ Fantasy Gifts a good example of how stores can bring theater to traditional retail? What other retailers are doing a good job of combining entertainment and events into the shopping environment to improve the customer experience this holiday season?

Please practice The RetailWire Golden Rule when submitting your comments.
Braintrust
"My only question is — why haven’t they done this before? Obviously, this is exciting for both the buyers of these extravagant gifts and those who simply dream about them."
"It’s great that Neiman Marcus is displaying some of their fantasy gifts, but they are only doing it at one location. How could they bring the same excitement to their other stores?"
"It’s a great idea, and long overdue. The reason Neiman Marcus hasn’t done this before is that they haven’t had to — all the fantasy gifts sell out — but this is a great way to drive sales at stores."

Join the Discussion!

9 Comments on "Will displaying fantasy gifts lift Neiman Marcus’ Christmas sales?"


Sort by:   newest | oldest | most voted
Liz Crawford
Guest
6 years 5 months ago

My only question is — why haven’t they done this before? Obviously, this is exciting for both the buyers of these extravagant gifts and those who simply dream about them. And what a great brand equity play for Neiman Marcus! My advice: Do this at every flagship in every major city.

Max Goldberg
Guest
6 years 5 months ago

It’s great that Neiman Marcus is displaying some of their fantasy gifts, but they are only doing it at one location. How could they bring the same excitement to their other stores? Consumers love retail-tainment. Retailers should do more than simply feature holiday items. Think about the core story of your store. What makes it different from your competitors? Then highlight those differences/benefits throughout the store in an entertaining, engaging way. Neiman Marcus is doing just that. It doesn’t have to be as extravagant, but it should be as creative.

Cathy Hotka
Guest
6 years 5 months ago

It’s a great idea, and long overdue. The reason Neiman Marcus hasn’t done this before is that they haven’t had to — all the fantasy gifts sell out — but this is a great way to drive sales at stores. Putting displays in stores would generate excitement, even among those of us who don’t have $150,000 to spend on a single gift.

Naomi K. Shapiro
Guest
Naomi K. Shapiro
6 years 5 months ago

Yes. Openly displaying Neiman Marcus’ fantasy gifts is entertaining and informative (in terms of what people who have money can buy and what we others can fantasize about), but it’s also absolutely brilliant FREE miles and miles of publicity for Neiman Marcus and the mall.

Look at the articles and reactions about this and look at the fact that we are writing about it and spreading it even further … and further — fabulous publicity.

Lee Kent
Guest
6 years 5 months ago

I know consumers love retail-tainment, but this isn’t it to me. Who wants to make a trip to a store to see pictures of a SPA package or of a trip to Kentucky? Now, if it had been that lavish Winnebago they featured years back, I might have considered.

This one falls short of my 2 cents.

Tom Redd
Guest
6 years 5 months ago

Sure. Window shopping is still alive and well. Theatrical (large word) has always been in retail. Fashion windows are wild this year with the added “digital” element.

NM keeps the spirit of holiday dreams alive. Imagining being on NM toys is the fun part of holidays!

Craig Sundstrom
Guest
6 years 5 months ago

Good idea — well, maybe a good idea — but a poor choice of items. Most of them had substantial travel/celebrity components so there really wasn’t much to look at. OTOH, this would have seemed like a natural opportunity to showcase jewelry (perhaps security concerns nixed that).

Karen McNeely
Guest
6 years 5 months ago

Clearly any time you can get someone talking about your brand, it’s going to help your business, but since they are only on display at Roosevelt Field, this is a huge boon for the mall as is presumably the opening of a new store the caliber of Neiman Marcus.

I don’t think we really see many larger retailers bringing great customer experience to the table. In general, I see small businesses doing this better, by bringing in locally made items and makers and carrying merchandise that has more meaning behind it. Once things become large scale, some of that specialness disappears.

Kai Clarke
Guest
6 years 5 months ago

Great concept and a different way to put a spin on the holidays. This is less about the customer experience and more about a unique gift that helps others as well.

wpDiscuz
Braintrust
"My only question is — why haven’t they done this before? Obviously, this is exciting for both the buyers of these extravagant gifts and those who simply dream about them."
"It’s great that Neiman Marcus is displaying some of their fantasy gifts, but they are only doing it at one location. How could they bring the same excitement to their other stores?"
"It’s a great idea, and long overdue. The reason Neiman Marcus hasn’t done this before is that they haven’t had to — all the fantasy gifts sell out — but this is a great way to drive sales at stores."

Take Our Instant Poll

Does openly displaying Neiman Marcus’ Fantasy Gifts provide a bigger benefit to Roosevelt Field Mall or to Neiman Marcus?

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...