Ralph Lauren is closing its flagship Polo store in New York in less than two weeks.
The Fifth Avenue location will be one of dozens of stores that the company will shutter in an effort to cut costs and improve efficiency.
In the last quarter, same-store sales declined 5% compared to the same period a year before.
The brand is struggling to connect with millennials, stay relevant, and keep up with fast-fashion brands like H&M, Uniqlo, and Zara.
We visited Ralph Lauren’s Polo store on Fifth Avenue the same day the company announced it would close. The store was full of unfashionable clothes and lacked shoppers, despite being located on one of the busiest streets in New York. Take a look inside:
Ralph Lauren's Polo flagship is located at 711 Fifth Avenue, next door to stores like Gucci and Armani. This strip of Fifth Avenue is one of the most exclusive shopping spots in the world.
The Polo brand is known for its signature preppy style, which was on full display in a storefront window.
That stood in stark contrast to the inside of the store, where we found row upon row of Polo shirts in garish colours. The Polo logos varied in size, but some were unfashionably large.
The shirts we saw cost $US85 and up -- hard to justify when a similar cotton polo shirt costs just $US9.99 at H&M.
The mannequins in the front of the store were poorly dressed. In this picture, a men's bathing suit was squashed under a pair of un-zipped jeans.
The menswear section was neatly laid out and felt uncrowded, which was a definite plus. However, most of the collections of clothing were grouped together by colour, which made it hard for any of the products to stand out.
One room was awash with beige suits. We found it hard to see how this clothing would appeal to the modern urban man.
Unless you are channeling the 'Downton Abbey' look, we can't see how these suits would be practical in New York City.
Ralph Lauren had a great selection of coloured chinos, but again, they seemed overpriced. At $US125 a pair, they cost $US85 more than a similar pair of pants at Uniqlo.
There were only a handful of people in the store when we visited on a Tuesday morning. The menswear section was completely empty.
As was the women's section of the store. There were multiple people working, but no one for them to help.
There was a selection of khaki clothed mannequins in the women's section. A lot of the styles on display seemed very dated.
There was a similar selection of polo shirts in the women's section. These shirts looked suitable for tennis but we struggled to see how these would appeal to young shoppers.
In some sections of womenswear, there was very limited stock left. A spokesperson for Ralph Lauren said that any unsold clothing will be sent to the other store locations after the store closes.
But there were very few discounted items in the store and those that were on sale had only a very small reduction in price.
We noticed that some of the women's clothing looked grubby. This navy jacket had dust marks on the front.
The store also had kid's section which just as expensive as adult wear in some cases. One navy wool jacket cost $US295.
The clothing was an odd mix of expensive formal and casual wear. This tie and denim jacket combo seemed like an uncomfortable choice for kids.
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