All chrome everything, literally.
If you ever wished for a Chrome Hearts theme park, get ready because the brand’s new flagship is a black, silver and leather playground, unlike anything to hit the Manhattan retail scene. Set in a whopping 16,000-square-feet warehouse-esque venue in the West Village, the grand interior features a fluid, two-story setup encompassing gallery space, a showroom, shop, lounge and chef’s kitchen. “The Chrome Hearts on 64th Street was our first freestanding store,” co-owner Laurie Lynn Stark told The Hollywood Reporter. “Now we have almost 30 stores, so it’s monumental to come back to New York 30 years later.”
After more than four years of searching for the perfect destination and tailoring it to fit their vision, husband-and-wife duo Laurie Lynn and Richard Stark decided their second Manhattan location would be on Washington Street. “There was a lot of good energy here,” Laurie Lynn said about the store, which formerly housed Art + Commerce, the agency that represented such giants as Annie Leibovitz and Steven Meisel. “My husband had very big restrictions on the type of building. He wanted to be able to pull a tractor into here.”
But beyond the space’s impressive artistic legacy — and extremely high ceilings — it occupies a prime street corner in what was at the time, a more up-and-coming neighborhood. Their intuition proved to be spot-on. Two years ago, the Whitney Museum’s Renzo Piano-designed site opened in the Meatpacking district mere minutes from the new Chrome Hearts.
While the factory headquarters will remain on the West Coast, the New York flagship will serve as the East Coast and retail headquarters. In addition to selling jewelry, shoes, apparel and unique finds like sterling silver chairs, staplers, incense and even a walker, also of note are the lavish Baccarat chandeliers. Chrome Hearts put its signature silver spin on the 250-year-old crystal company to create these extraordinarily special pieces, suspended above another store centerpiece, a spiraling ebony staircase.
Regarding concept, versatility was key, in terms of design, inventory and events. Laurie Lynn plans to have monthly offerings of unexpected culinary, artistic and musical collaborations. With an artsy network of friends and family as expansive as its NY flagship, Chrome Hearts is sure to have an exciting roster — the couple’s it-girl daughter Jesse Jo will be among the performers. Rather than capitalizing on every inch of the building, the Chrome Hearts founders created a space that feels less like retail and more like a home where they express their brand through the decor and the art they make, as well as the creative experiences they host.
But if you are looking to shop, anything and everything Chrome Hearts does, from nail polish to eyewear, will break here first. Not to mention, the store currently has the highly coveted, debut Bella Hadid collection, previously released only in Paris.
As for the giant leather dinosaur, 150-pound chain-mail flag, 8-by-9 feet solid silver door and other one-of-a-kind creations made by Richard Stark? “Everything is technically for sale,” said Laurie Lynn, whose photographs are also on view. “If you can convince my husband to sell it.”
755 Washington St., New York, NY; chromehearts.com.