World Famous Retail Store with Lafayette Ties Closes
Henri Bendel, the luxury retailer with over 23 stores worldwide, is closing their doors for good. The world renowned retail store opened in Greenwich Village, New York, 123 years ago, and has been a staple of the rich and famous ever since. They are known for handbags, jewelry, luxury fashion accessories, home fragrances and gifts. And every year it was a highlight of the holiday season to view their elaborate and beloved Christmas window displays.
Henri Bendel, who was a hat maker, came from Lafayette, Louisiana to New York in 1895 to set up a shop that catered almost exclusively to the wealthy. According to Wikipedia, Bendel, was born in Vermillionville, Louisiana in.1868. His mother was apparently an amazing business woman, and later in life married Benjamin Falk, who was one of the most successful business owners in Lafayette history. She also operated retail furniture outlet, a drug store, a dry goods store, and an undertaker parlor. Bendel also owned a millinery shop in Morgan City, but after it burned to the ground, he and his wife made the trek to New York City.
Their most famous location, their flagship store, is on 5th Ave, and it has been the setting for countless movies and television shows for decades. Their brown and white striped shopping bags and hat boxes remain a status symbol to this day.
The company was bought out in 1985 by L Brands, who stated they wanted to 'focus on larger brands with more growth potential.'. All locations will reportedly close in January, 2019.
And yes, this is who Bendel Gardens, and Bendel Road is named after.