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Fortunoff Backyard to take over Pier 1 space in New Jersey

Al Urbanski
Fortunoff Backyard Store has more than two dozen locations in New York and New Jersey.

The long-honored retail name Fortunoff continues to thrive in New Jersey.

Fortunoff Backyard Store has signed a lease at the Somerset Shopping Center, a high-profile 219,000-sq.-ft. property in Bridgewater where it will inhabit a space formerly occupied by Pier 1.

Pier 1 filed for Chapter 11 early in 2020 and went out of business at the end of that year. Fortunoff, a strong name in jewelry and furnishings in New York and New Jersey, itself filed for Chapter 11 protection twice in the first decade of this century.

In 2009, the Fortunoff and Mayrock families, original owners of the company, purchased Fortunoff’s intellectual property rights. They continued to sell jewelry online and reached an agreement with Furniture Concepts to continue selling furniture at brick-and-mortar locations in Backyard Stores. More than two dozen locations now operate in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Delaware, and Pennsylvania.

Levin Management, the broker for the deal on the 9,400-sq.-ft. location in Somerset, reported that Fortunoff Backyard will open there in advance of the spring buying season and will complete a full renovation of the space later this year.

“Fortunoff Backyard Store is a well-recognized and very strong brand and a perfect match for Somerset Shopping Center,” said Levin senior leasing rep Vanessa Fernandez-Kelty.

Somerset Shopping Center serves a growing residential population of 121,000 people with an average household income of $140,000 within a five-mile radius. Other tenants there include Christmas Tree Shops, Barnes & Noble, Gap, Rite Aid, TGI Fridays, and Men’s Wearhouse.

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