New York - Best Buy opened its
first 24-hour store in the U.S.,
a 48,000-square-foot two-story location on Union Square at the corner of East 14th Street
and 4th Avenue
The store celebrated the grand opening by presenting $5,000 checks
to two local non-profit organizations: Union Square Partnership, which will
fund a new project in the area, and Safe Horizons.
As Phil Chacra, district
manager of Best Buy, said, the 24-hour format matches the city it serves. "This
is the âcity that doesn't sleep,' so if you can't sleep, you can shop here."
Chacra and Mike Vitelli,
executive VP of the customer operating group, both noted that this is the sixth
Manhattan Best Buy store, with a total of 10 in the five boroughs of New York City.
Chacra, in comments to
Best Buy associates, and assorted corporate executives, consultants and media,
noted that two more stores are set to open in Flushing, Queens, and on East 116th
Street in Manhattan soon, and that "as we speak, another store is opening
across the river in Jersey City, N.J."
All Best Buy locations have names, and execs at the opening call
this one, "The Show." It is aptly named since it is the chain's largest
Manhattan-area store and features a stage in its new musical instruments area,
called live@Best Buy.
The state will feature local artists and is the first Best Buy
with a musical instruments department in Manhattan.
While the location does have musical instruments, will offer
same-day delivery, and has Wi-Fi in the store for customers' devices, it does
not have a major appliance department. It does have a small appliance area.
The store, formerly a Circuit
City store that closed
earlier this year, is larger since Best Buy opened up the back of the second
floor, which was previously a warehouse area, according to Amy Adoniz, general manager of the Union Square store.
And as with many store openings for any independent or chain,
this one had its own adventure: 12 hours before opening, a pipe burst in the
ceiling on the second floor and there were 3 inches of water on parts of the
sales area. Adoniz credited the hard work of store personnel and Best Buy
associates from other New York
locations for making sure there was no sign of water or water damage anywhere
in the store.
Opening-day activities will include a CD-signing today with
Grammy Award-winning band Bon Jovi, who will be promoting its promoting latest
album, "The Circle." The first 500 fans to purchase the CD from selected Best
Buy stores in Noho, Chelsea or Midtown Manhattan will receive a wristband,
which grants access to the Union Square CD signing.
Other opening week events include:
- Saturday, Nov. 14: Lamb of God appearance and signing from 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.; Peter Erskine
and Friends performance and signing from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.
- Sunday, Nov. 15:
Anthrax performance and signing 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.
- Tuesday, Nov. 17: Wyclef
Jean performance and signing from 6:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.
The Union Square store is diagonally across
the street from a Best Buy Mobile location, and there is no truth to the rumor
that New York
will rename the intersection "Union Square/Best Buy Corner."