1.pngAt the northern tip of Miami Beach’s famed barrier island, atop what was once a tangle of mangrove-filled swamps, sits a three-story, 466,000-square-foot sanctum for the super-rich. A pair of models dressed in beige linen outfits strut silently past onlookers like a wandering catwalk ad. Outside, shoppers shell out $30 for valet parking and the right to show off their supercars near the main entryway. It’s sunny and breezy on this picturesque Monday afternoon, but when it does rain, mall workers will scurry out front with umbrellas to escort shoppers to shelter.
在迈阿密海滩著名的沙洲岛北端,曾经的一片长满红树林的沼泽地,现在已变成了一座占地46.6万平方英尺的三层楼的购物天堂。这里是富豪们的胜地。两个穿着浅色亚麻时装的模特趾高气扬地从驻足的路人身边走过,好像是在T台上走猫步一般。购物的人们掏出30美金小费让服务生代他们泊车,顺便炫耀一下自己的超跑。微风徐来,阳光明媚,真是个风景如画的周一下午。不过如果外面下雨了,工作人员也会跑出来打着伞将购物者们毕恭毕敬地迎接进去。Bal Harbour Shops looks like a posh resort compared with the 1,100 or so indoor malls sprinkled throughout America’s suburbs. Instead of the glare of fluorescent lights and fake plants, the main drag here is lined with tropical greenery and ponds with turtles and koi. It’s different from your run-of-the-mill mall in other ways, too: This one isn’t constantly cutting deals on rent to get stores to stay. In fact, there’s a waitlist. And while some malls are desperately seeking financial lifelines, this one is planning a $400 million expansion.跟美国各大城市郊区的1100多家其他室内商场相比,巴尔港购物中心倒更像一个豪华度假村。这里最引人注意的不是灯光和假植物,而是随处可见的热带植物以及池塘里的乌龟和锦鲤。它和普通商场还有一些不同之处。比如这家商场的地租极少降价,商场根本不愁招不到商,很多商家排着队等着进驻。就在一些商场连生存都成问题时,这家商场却打算再投资4亿美元进行扩张。On this day, Matthew Whitman Lazenby, the Bal Harbour Shops’ developer, is biting into a veggie club sandwich at the mall’s second-floor grill. The view is expensive: Range Rovers and Porsches sit outside amid the palm trees. Lazenby, 40, has just returned from a business trip to South America, where he visited several malls, including one in Sao Paolo that’s a virtual duplicate of his. The grandson of the mall’s late founder, Stanley Whitman, Lazenby says he’s fully cognizant of the industry’s troubles-and how they don’t really affect Bal Harbour.这一天,巴尔港购物中心的开发商马修.惠特曼.拉曾比在商场二楼的餐厅里咬着一个蔬菜三明治。映入眼帘的没有一件便宜东西,楼下的棕榈树间停着的都是路虎和保时捷。今年40岁的拉曾比刚从南美洲出差回来,他此行去了那里的几家商场,其中有一家圣保罗的商场几乎就是他这家商场的翻版。他是这家商场的已故创始人斯担利.惠特曼的孙子。拉曾比表示,他已经充分认识到行业存在的问题,以及这些问题对巴尔港购物中心的影响。“There’s not many luxury stores you go into and say, ‘Ugh, this is terrible,’” he says. “There are some, though. Not here.”“一进去就让人感觉‘这里真糟糕’的豪华商场并不多。也许有一些,但绝对不是我们这里。”Malls across America are dealing with what’s been called the “retail apocalypse:” the looming death of an industry unable to cope with the shifting shopping habits of consumers. Clothing retailers close stores by the thousands as households shift spending to travel, eating out and other leisure activities. More importantly, foot traffic continues to slow as customers abandon the suburban mall for the ease of online shopping. U.S. e-commerce sales are expected to account for 17 percent of all retail by 2022, up from 12.7 percent in 2017, with Amazon.com Inc. the main driver, according to Forrester Research.美国的所有商场都面临着“零售业末日”的问题。随着消费者购物习惯的变化,无法跟上变革脚步的传统零售业已现出行将就木之相。很多家庭都把支出的大头放在了旅游、在外就餐和其他休闲活动上,卖衣服的零售店几千家几千家地倒闭。更重要的是,随着人们日益享受网购的便利性,传统商场的人流量也江河日下。据福雷斯特研究公司的数据显示,到2022年,美国的电商销量将占所有零售业销量的17%,远高于2017年的12.7%,而亚马逊公司则将成为主要推动力。Even worse for the American mall, Credit Suisse has predicted that from 20 percent to 25 percent of the complexes will shut their doors within the next five years. It’s the kind of cultural cataclysm so total that suburban explorers now trek through dead malls with their cameras, chronicling decay as if they were ancient ruins.对于美国商场来说,更糟糕的消息是,据瑞士信贷预测,未来五年,有20%到25%的商业综合体将关门大吉。这不啻于一种文化的大革命,对传统零售业的打击是致命的。美国已经有一些所谓的“郊区探险家”扛着摄像机在荒废的郊区商场里探险了,仿佛是在探寻什么古代踪迹一般。While the malls Generation X came of age in are on death row, luxurious versions of those dinosaurs are doing just fine. Malls such as Americana Manhasset on the wealthy north shore of New York’s Long Island, the Forum Shops at Caesars in Las Vegas, and the Grove in Los Angeles, often teeming with a healthy mix of wealthy locals and spendthrift tourists. But even among these successful swanky malls, Bal Harbour Shops stands tallest. It regularly tops the annual list of the most productive shopping centers in America, according to real estate research firm Green Street Advisors. Bal Harbour Shops declined to share revenue numbers, conceding only that it’s profitable.那些给“70后”的青春留下了美好回忆的传统商场都已经到了风烛残年,然而一些豪华商场却依然呈现出勃勃生机。比如纽约长岛的美国购物中心,拉斯维加斯的凯撒宫购物中心,洛杉矶的格罗夫购物中心,经常挤满了生活滋润的本地人和大把撒钱的外地游客。不过即便和这些商场相比,巴尔港购物中心的表现也算是最好的。它经常被评排美国效益最高的购物中心。不过巴尔港购物中心拒绝发布详细收益数字,只承认自己是盈利的。Though it’s not enough for a mall to simply be near rich folks, it sure does help, says Michael Brown, a partner in the retail practice of consulting firm A.T. Kearney. “Those malls in the densely populated, high-income sectors are continuing to thrive,” he says. Bal Harbour is certainly among them. Many shoppers do come here from afar, but some live right next door. The two towers of the equally decadent St. Regis Hotel across the street are visible from the mall’s second floor. The Ritz-Carlton is just down the road, with one-bedroom suites that can run more than $1,000 a night. Between them sits more than a half-dozen luxury high-rise condominiums lining that famous beach.要吸引富人前来购物,光是把商场开在富人区里是不够的,但“近水楼台先得月”依然是个朴素的真理。咨询机构A.T. Kearney的零售业务合伙人迈克尔.布朗表示:“在人口密集和高收入者聚居区域的商场仍然保持了较好的增长势头。”巴尔港购物中心显然是其中之一。很多消费者的确是从其他地方慕名而来的,但是住在附近的购物客也有不少。从商场的二楼,你可以看到马路对面的圣瑞吉斯酒店的两座大楼。顺路步行不远便是丽思卡尔顿酒店,每晚房价经常高达1000美元以上。在这片著名的海滩上还矗立着七八座豪华公寓楼。One downside for luxury malls located among the well-to-do, however, is that they constantly need to update their offerings to appease all those discerning buyers searching for the hottest brands.开在富人区的商场当然也有一个难处,那就是他们总是得进行升级,好不断满足挑剔的消费者对最热品牌的渴求。But if your mall’s in the wrong place, all the hot stores in the world won’t save you-no matter what you’re selling.如果你的商场开错了地方,你就是卖遍全世界的潮牌也没有用,不管你卖的是什么。Look no farther than a traditional mall located just 15 minutes from Bal Harbour. The Mall at 163rd Street in North Miami Beach is a desolate shell of its former self. Its decline took decades, as department store anchors slowly departed for a more upscale mall nearby. The only direction to go was downmarket, as a chunk of it was demolished and replaced by a Walmart Inc. Supercenter. What remains today is a tall, arched hallway where blocks of five storefronts or more remain vacant. Most kiosks are abandoned, too.远的不看,只看离巴尔港购物中心仅有15分钟路程的一座传统商场就知道了。这座商场位于北迈阿密海湾163街,它几乎只剩了一具空壳。它的衰弱持续了整整20年,很多主打的品牌纷纷撤柜,搬到了附近的一家更高端的商场。它的唯一选择就是走低端路线,它的很大一部分已经被拆了,变成了一家沃尔玛的超级购物中心。今天还能看到的只有一个高大的拱形大厅,有五个店面左右的空间完全是平地,大多数店面也早被废弃了。The few shoppers walking through on a weekday were headed to the discount racks at Marshall’s or Ross Dress for Less. A hopeful sign on the wall promises: “New stores coming soon!”在工作日,走进这家苟延残喘的老商场的人寥寥无几,仅有的几个购物者也是来买便宜衣服的。墙上的一张标语还在强行打鸡血:“新店马上开张!”There is no Sears-to-Chanel story for the mall in Bal Harbour. It sought to be ostentatious from the start. When Stanley Finch Whitman opened the doors in 1965, he hoped to attract the poshest stores. Most European luxury brands had yet to invade the U.S., which left New York as the nation’s sole home for the glitziest names. Early shops and boutiques at Bal Harbour included FAO Schwartz and a Martha Phillips dress salon, but Whitman was unable to lure a major anchor for years. Then, in 1971, Neiman Marcus agreed to open its first department store outside its home state of Texas. New York’s Saks Fifth Avenue soon followed.巴尔港购物中心的商家不是慢慢升级来的,它从一开始走的就是豪华路线。1965年斯坦利.惠特曼刚开办这家商场时,他就希望引来最高端的品牌。当时多数欧洲豪华品牌还没有入侵美国,全美潮牌云集的城市也就只有纽约。早期巴尔港购物中心的商家里就有FAO Schwartz、Martha Phillips等颇有知名度的潮牌,但惠特曼好几年都能没能招来一个经营一线品牌的商家。直到1971年,内曼马库斯在这里开设了在德州以外开设第一家门店。纽约的萨克斯第五大道很快也进驻了这里。Lazenby joined his family’s company in 2003 and took over as chief executive in 2013. He’s more expansion-minded than his predecessors, investing in a second mall property downtown rather than staying put in Bal Harbour, as his grandfather did. “Now we have an eye on possibly doing some other things,” says Lazenby, who adds that while he’s open to more individual projects, he doesn’t plan to expand nationally. “Size has never been what it’s about.”拉曾比2003年进入了他的家族企业,2013年接任CEO。他比祖父更有进取心,他不甘心做一个守成之主,而是投资在市中心开设了第二家商场。拉曾比表示:“现在我们也在关注能不能做些其他事情。”他表示,他对更多具体的项目都持开放态度,不过他目前并不打算在全国范围内扩张。“规模并不是最重要的。”For the bulk of the U.S. retail world, the word “mall” has become a curse, one inexorably tied to the aforementioned apocalypse. Owners prefer “collection” or “town center” or “promenade.” Lazenby grudgingly concedes that Bal Harbour Shops is indeed a mall, but goes on to refer to “store clusters” as “shopping environments” instead.对于美国大部分零售业者,“商场”一词已经成了后零售时代人人避之唯恐不及的诅咒。业者们现在更喜欢“聚合体”、“城镇中心”和“休闲区”这样的字眼。拉曾比虽然不情愿地承认巴尔港购物中心确实是一家商场,但转眼又抛出了“商店聚合体”和“购物环境”之类的词来形容它。Malls for the rich aren’t immune to e-commerce, Lazenby acknowledges-they just have more time than normal malls before the online monster hits. Much of luxury hasn’t shifted there yet-it’s much harder to convince shoppers to dump $10,000 on a bejeweled necklace or alligator shoes without seeing the items up close. Nevertheless, elite labels that once spurned e-commerce are now moving some business online. Internet retailers such as Net-A-Porter and Farfetch have proven that there is an appetite for high-end online shopping.拉曾比坦承,即便是专门面向富人的高端商场,也不能完全避免电商的冲击,他们无非是能比传统商场招架得更久一些,毕竟奢侈品很大程度上还没有迈进电商时代--要说服消费者光凭网上的几张照片,去掏10000美元买名贵首饰、买名牌鞋包,显然还是很有难度的。尽管如此,不少一度拒绝电商的高端品牌现在也向电商投降了。Net-A-Porter和Farfetch等电商的火爆已经证明,消费者对在线购买高端产品是有需求的。There are luxury brands that still shun the internet, but Lazenby warns they should pursue both sides of the business. “One shouldn’t be at the expense of the other,” he says.有些奢侈品牌直到现在仍不肯“触网”,拉曾比表示,他们应该实体线上同时发展。他表示:“一方面的发展,不一定要以牺牲另一方面为代价。”Inside Bal Harbour, a row of jewelry stores draws double-takes, even from well-appointed passersby. These shiny outposts include Bvlgari, Harry Winston and Chopard. At Graff, the biggest head-turner is a ring with an emerald-cut diamond the size of a fingernail. These are among the few shops at Bal Harbour whose doors are closed-even the 1 percent sometimes have to get buzzed in. Still, the complex is generally a plush, pleasant, materialistic paradise for shoppers with cash to burn.在巴尔港购物中心,珠光宝气的珠宝店时常会吸引路人驻足,连那些见过世面的富豪们也不会例外。宝格丽、海瑞温斯顿、萧邦等都在这里设有门店。在格拉芙珠宝店中,最引人注目的是一枚镶有指甲盖大祖母绿型钻石的戒指。为了营造高端感,这些珠宝店的门一般是掩着的。但有时就连这些珠宝店里也人声鼎沸。不过总体上,这个商业综合体依然是一个奢华、愉悦的物质天堂。Not so for the mall’s tenants, who operate in an environment best labeled as cutthroat. Space is limited, so underperforming stores are often culled to make room for up-and-comers (That is, except for a fancy bookstore that earned a permanent spot on the third level). Shops are often relocated around the mall’s main hall as they jockey to gain additional selling space. Fashion labels such as Chanel, Gucci and Goyard currently rank as three of the most productive stores at Bal Harbour, the mall says.不过商场租户的日子却并非都非常好过,他们的经营环境可谓弱肉强食、优胜劣汰。由于商场空间有限,业绩不佳的商家经常会被扫地出门,腾地方给新品牌入驻(只有三层的一家书店获得了永久开店权)。大厅周围的那一圈店面更是经常改换门头。目前,香奈儿、古驰和戈雅是该商店效益最好的三大店面。Bal Harbour does include some stores you would see at a middle-class mall, but their offerings are much fancier. Ralph Lauren is here, for example, but this one is full of the retailer’s Purple Label line, the highest-end merchandise it sells, including $5,000 silk dinner jackets and $500 bronco belt buckles. More often, though, Bal Harbour serves up boutiques you won’t see at your local turnpike shopping center. Chanel’s shop, one of the biggest in the mall, has a VIP lounge for the highest rollers. Its store here is known for a selection of exotic leather bags that cost many times those of the already pricey lambskin basics.巴尔港购物中心也有一些中端商场常见的品牌,但即便是这些平价品牌,在这里也走的是比较高端的路线。比如这里虽然有拉夫劳伦的专卖店,但这家店面主要卖的是品牌旗下的紫标系列,也就是拉夫劳伦的最高端产品,比如5000美元一件的丝绸晚礼服,500美元一个的皮带扣等。但这里更多的还是你平时在一般商场里难得一见的奢侈品品牌。比如作为商场里最大的商家之一,香奈儿在这里专门有一个VIP厅。这家香奈儿卖的进口皮包,比市面上的已经很贵的一般香奈包皮包还要贵上好几倍。As successful as Bal Harbour is, Lazenby isn’t sitting still. In 2015, demolition crews descended on a 70-year-old Congregational church behind the mall’s parking garage. “Worship this Sunday,” the sign for the Church by the Sea still read as a Caterpillar excavator ripped down its walls. Bal Harbour Shops had purchased the land for $30 million after a decades-long negotiation begun by Lazenby’s grandfather, who died last year. The deal sparked an uproar in the community.虽然巴尔港购物中心已经很成功了,但拉曾比并没有就此满足。2015年,一支拆迁队将商场停车场后面的一座拥有70年历史的教堂夷为平地。当推土机开始推墙的时候,教堂的墙上还写着“本周日来作礼拜吧”的字样。其实早在几十年前,拉曾比的祖父(于去年过世)就曾谈判购买教堂的地,但直到去年,巴尔港购物中心才以3000万美元的价格将这块地皮买下。这笔交易也在当地引起了轩然大波。“It’s crazy that they would go ahead at Christmas time-a religious time of year-and start demolishing a historic church,” one local resident told the Miami Herald. “What a Christmas gift for the residents of Bal Harbour and the congregants.”“他们在基督教的圣日来拆迁,简直是封了,而且拆的还是这样有历史意义的教堂。”一对本地居民对《迈阿密先驱报》表示:“对于巴尔港的居民和信教群众,这算是一份什么圣诞节礼物!”Lazenby was unmoved. “Activist naysayers,” he called his detractors.拉曾比却不为所动,他称这些唱反调的人都是“激进否定分子。”The new wing of Bal Harbour Shops that will take the church’s place is expected to open in 2023. The mall recently announced that a three-floor, 53,000-square-foot Barneys New York would be its new anchor shop.在这片教堂上建起的商场附楼预计将于2023年开放。巴尔港购物中心还宣布,它在纽约建成的一座占地5.3万平方英尺的三层建筑将成为它的新旗舰店。On a recent sun-soaked afternoon, Lazenby is about to head back to his corporate office across from the mall. Shoppers who just finished lunch look into a window or two on their way out. A man in a T-shirt and basketball shorts exits Le Zoo, a restaurant where a cheeseburger costs $18. His friend asks him what stores are inside Bal Harbour. “Pretty much anything bougie,” he replies, as they stroll toward the shops.在最近一个阳光普照的下午,拉曾比打算从商场回到马路对面的办公室。刚吃完午饭的购物者们漫不经心地看着旁边的橱窗。一个穿着T恤衫和篮球短裤的男人走出了一家叫Le Zoo的餐厅,这家餐厅的一个汉堡大概卖18美元。他的朋友问他,巴尔港购物中心里都有哪些商店。他回答:“几乎所有小资的东西这里都有。”然后他们一起向商场逛去。They’re back just a few minutes later, toting a Versace shopping bag, and hop into a yellow, half-million-dollar Lamborghini parked right in front. The driver revs the engine repeatedly as they roll away, leaving nearby diners annoyed.几分钟后他们转了回来,手里提着范思哲的购物袋,跳进一台50万美元的兰博基尼。开车的男人大脚轰了几次油门,车子的噪音让附近的食客纷纷皱眉。“Who was that?” a mall worker asks as the valet returns to his post.“他是谁?”等泊车的服务生回来时,一个商场工作人员问他。The valet shrugs. “Somebody’s son.”服务生耸耸肩:“某个富二代。”