Bloomingdale’s: 15 Things You Didn’t Know (Part 1)

Bloomingdale’s is one of the most iconic companies in the world. They high-end luxury retailer may have been around for awhile, but it’s not going anywhere anytime soon. However, despite the fact that the retailer has spent a considerable amount of time in the spotlight and under the scrutiny of the public eye, there are still some things that many people don’t know. With that in mind, here we present our list of 15 things you probably didn’t know about Bloomingdale’s. Check out part one below, and stay tuned for part two, coming soon!

Number Fifteen: Its Midtown Location Has a Secret Restaurant. And it’s called Le Train Bleu. The restaurant is located on the sixth floor of the Manhattan-based store and is modeled after the 19th-century French express train called the Calais-Mediterranee Express.

Number Fourteen: It All Began With Hoop Skirts. Bloomingdale’s was started by the brothers Joseph and Lyman G. Bloomingdale in 1861. The brothers had a Ladies Notions’ Shop in the Lower East Side of Manhattan, and it was there that they began selling hoop skirts.

Number Thirteen: It’s Been in the Same Place Since 1886. The Bloomingdale’s located on 59th Street and Lexington Avenue in Manhattan has been in place since 1886. When it first opened in 1886, it was revolutionary in its design. While many retailers used the display windows to fill with everything they sold, Bloomingdale’s created more of a curated display window that was suggestive and visually appealing.

Number Twelve: It Once Sold Suits for $10. You’ll be hard-pressed to find socks less than $10 at the retailer today, but in the early 20th century, they were selling clothing for pennies. Ladies’ stocking were just 10 cents a pop and men’s wool suits cost just $10.

Number Eleven: It Advertised Itself on Beach Umbrellas. Free beach umbrellas, at that. Though you won’t see retailer’s logo on umbrellas today, in the early 20th century, Bloomingdale’s handed out 5,000 free beach umbrellas for street vendors.

Number Ten: It Has One of the Only Freestanding Suburban Stores in the World. It’s common to find outlet malls all over in suburbia; however, it’s significantly less common to find standalone stores in the suburbs. Bloomingdale’s has a standalone location in White Plains, New York that was originally meant to combine their Eastchester and New Rochelle locations, and today, it’s one of the only standalone stores in the suburbs.

Number Nine: Its Designer Shopping Bags Were Inspired by Tarot Cards. It’s true! The retailer used shopping bags in 1961 that were inspired by French tarot cards. Stay tuned for part two of our list of 15 things you didn’t know about Bloomingdale’s, coming soon!