Best Place to Shop Like There's No Recession - 2010
In the past few years, designer Christophe Decarnin has revitalized French fashion house Balmain by introducing exaggerated, almost Klaus Nomi-esque shoulders into many of his frocks. Recession be damned — fashionistas have been spending big dough on Balmain. In fact, a gray cotton sweatshirt that would otherwise be unremarkable save for the angry shoulders and deliberate deconstruction will cost you $2,450 at South Beach's newest luxury boutique the Webster. All apologies, but if you haven't yet recovered from the price, steer clear of the 20,000-square-foot store located in a historic former hotel on Collins Avenue. You might be in for a serious series of fainting spells. The trio that founded the store has a professional pedigree that includes stints at some of France's most storied houses, magazines, and boutiques, so it's safe to say they can attract a discerning, international clientele. Besides, this once was a land of unrestrained glamour. Do you really want to live in a South Beach where there aren't designer sweatshirts for sale that are worth the equivalent of a down payment on a car, recession or not?