Friday, November 25, 2005

H&M Slowly Makes Its Way to Los Angeles

San Franciscans have been rushing to the city's two new H&M stores, the first outposts of the popular Swedish retailer (think IKEA, but with clothes) in the Western U.S.

The L.A. Times chronicled the frenzy in the Bay Area:

With 91 stores in the U.S., the Swedish retailer's clothing has quickly gained a reputation for being at once well-made, affordable and trend-conscious. Partnerships with designers such as Karl Lagerfeld and Stella McCartney have only boosted the chain's cachet.

The latest H&M locations here are notable both for their size — one on Powell Street occupies a 35,000-square-foot space in a former furniture store, while a Post Street store is 10,000 square feet — and for their proximity to the headquarters of homegrown competitor Gap Inc.

In the wee hours of Saturday morning, H&M fans began lining up outside the two new stores here...

The retailer, founded in Stockholm in 1947, plans another store in Concorde, near San Francisco, next spring.

As for Los Angeles, "we're actively looking" for a location, spokeswoman Lisa Sandberg said.

On the bright side, we have Beard Papa -- which LAT reviewer S. Irene Virbilia raved about in Thursdays paper -- and SF doesn't. So Bay Area, bite it.

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