The deep-discount retailer 99 Cents Only Stores announced Tuesday that they were setting their sights on Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills, Calif. as the next location for their newest store.
That's right -- Rodeo Drive, where three blocks of couture fashion boutiques sell suits for tens of thousands of dollars and there's an unspoken dress code if you want to be treated like you might buy something (cue "Pretty Woman" montage).
Is this a stunt? A statement about America's growing inequality? A late April Fools joke?
None of the above, assures company president Jeff Gold.
"We are quite serious," Gold writes in an email to the Huffington Post. "We would love to open a store on Rodeo Drive and we are not doing this to prove a point, other than that 99¢ Only Stores is a tremendous destination for values on quality everyday household needs, for everyone… not just the 99%."
While the news might have some clutching their pearls, the numbers simply don't add up.
Still, Gold writes that their highest volume store, a location on nearby Wilshire Boulevard, pulls in over $10 million in annual sales. "We would expect that a good location on Rodeo drive could potentially be our highest sales volume store," continues Gold, "and we would certainly sell significantly more product at our 99¢ Only Stores than any other merchant on Rodeo Drive."
Those are some bold words and a challenge for Rodeo Drive retailers, who are struggling to pay high rents despite their languishing sales.
But anyone who lives in Los Angeles knows that chutzpah alone isn't enough to take on parts of Beverly Hills' notoriously protectionist community. LA Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa has accused residents of the wealthy city of trying to kill plans for the "subway to the sea," a metro line that would tunnel underneath Beverly Hills High School.
"Remember: Beverly Hills has a history of opposition to the subway,” Villaraigosa said to the New York Times. "I can’t tell you what their motivations are. They say they want it, but they don’t want it there."
Also on HuffPost:
1. Try Unexpected Fast Fashion Stores
Instead of hitting the usual suspects (like Topshop and Zara) try other destinations that aren't as high traffic for picky fashionistas, but still offer tons of options. <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/07/20/walmart-target-best-stores_n_1688038.html?1349217665" target="_hplink">Stores like Kohl's, Chico's and Talbots</a> can require some hunting, but since they are less-frequented the chances of someone else having your item is decreased. Taylor Haircalf Skinny Belt, $44 <a href="http://www.anntaylor.com/ann/product/ANN-Must-Have-Outfits/SEP1031M/Haircalf-Skinny-Belt/289639?colorExplode=false&skuId=11833529&catid=cata000023&productPageType=fullPriceProducts&defaultColor=1479">Anntaylor.com</a>
Try Unexpected Fast Fashion Stores
Chico's Luster "Diva" Pullover, $109 <a href="http://www.chicos.com/store/browse/product.jsp?maxRec=263&pageId=1&productId=570058983&viewAll=&prd=Luster+Diva+Pullover&subCatId=&color=&fromSearch=&inSeam=&posId=2&catId=cat40036&cat=New+Arrivals&onSale=&colorFamily=&maxPg=17&size=">Chicos.com</a>
2. Shop The Men's Section
The women's section is chock-full of great finds ... but what about the <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/08/23/menswear-mens-clothing-for-women_n_1819463.html?1349217395" target="_hplink">men's section</a>? There are tons of pieces you can wear from the men's side of the store that are both unique and stylish. The best part? None of your (girl)friends will be in the same look. Zara "Saffiano" Leather Briefcase, $89 <a href="http://www.zara.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/product/us/en/zara-us-W2012/269247/928553/SAFFIANO LEATHER BRIEFCASE">Zara.com</a>
Shop The Men's Section
Old Navy Men's Military Jackets, $57 <a href="http://oldnavy.gap.com/browse/product.do?cid=85238&vid=1&pid=250891&scid=250891012">Oldnavy.com</a>
3. Shop The Sale Rack
Some of the best pieces are often overlooked by most consumers. Hitting the sale rack is a great way to choose items that were less popular and often more special. An extra hour of hunting through bins can mean you'll score something no one else has, at a great price no less. Forever21 Checkered Knit Sweater, $15 from $22 <a href="http://www.forever21.com/Product/Product.aspx?BR=f21&Category=sale_women&ProductID=2087533742&VariantID=">Forever21.com</a>
Shop The Sale Rack
Lyell "Fletcher" Flatform Sandal, $29 from $59 <a href="http://www.urbanoutfitters.com/urban/catalog/productdetail.jsp?id=24929523a&parentid=SALE_W_SHOES">Urbanoutfitters.com</a>
4. Get A Piece Tailored
Sometimes the problem with an item you find at a high street store is the fit. Just because something might not be the most flattering cut doesn't mean you can't make it perfect. Take <a href="http://www.allure.com/beauty-trends/how-to/2007/How_To_Get_Your_Clothes_To_Fit" target="_hplink">a piece to the tailor</a> and have it altered to fit your body like a glove. Not only will it make your clothes look more expensive, but it'll totally change the way a garment hangs and can make it unrecognizable. Topshop High Neck Swing Dress By Boutique, $130 <a href="http://us.topshop.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/ProductDisplay?beginIndex=0&viewAllFlag=&catalogId=33060&storeId=13052&productId=6718762&langId=-1&categoryId=&searchTerm=dress&pageSize=200">Topshop.com</a>
Get A Piece Tailored
Gap Classic Two-Button Blazer, $98 <a href="http://www.gap.com/browse/product.do?searchCID=25781&vid=1&pid=908375&scid=908375002">Gap.com</a>
5. Avoid Prints
Although it can be tempting to get your fill of<a href="http://www.glamour.com/fashion/blogs/slaves-to-fashion/2012/02/3-easy-tips-for-pulling-off-a.html" target="_hplink"> prints </a>from fast fashion stores, this can be dangerous. Although it is easy to camouflage a plain t-shirt or a pair of jeans, a print from a mass retailer can be spotted instantly and is much harder to style in different ways. American Apparel Unisex Oversized Fisherman Turtleneck Sweater, $135 <a href="http://store.americanapparel.net/rsakwft.html?c=Green">Americanapparel.net</a>
Mango Double Breasted Wool Coat, $59 <a href="http://shop.mango.com/US/p0/mango/new/double-breasted-wool-coat/?id=73000554_15&n=1&s=nuevo&ie=0&m=&ts=1349216523760">Mango.com</a>