Mon-Sat, 10am-9pm; Sun, 11am-7pm
B, D, F, M at Broadway-Lafayette St.; N, R at Prince St.
American Express, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
Shirtless models stripped down to swim trunks and sunscreen flex in the doorway of this self-proclaimed “epic” megastore, welcoming a beachy, surf-bum style to Manhattan. The four-story, 40,000-square-foot space is dark and cavernous, with dark-wood floors, a glowing central staircase, and videos of crashing waves playing from behind faux window panes. The décor is ornate and coolly fusty: Rich floral prints cover the walls, leafy plants bend over the racks, and hanging light fixtures are topped with mismatched patterned lampshades. Teenage girls giggle in the stairway and sing along to the blaring top-40 soundtrack, while drained-looking fathers and boyfriends flip through magazines in the clusters of high-backed armchairs dotting each floor. The apparel extends through a mazelike series of rooms, where it’s is obsessively refolded by perky, head-bobbing clerks and arranged by color. The “dude’s” selection is dominated by rumpled plaid shirts, Cali-centric tees, polos, and jeans, while attire for “Bettys” spans floral dresses, embellished tanks, short shorts, chunky knits, and miniskirts. Stacks of denim fill a room on the second floor, and the third level houses an emporium of perfume and body products named after various California beaches. The scent permeates all four floors and wafts out onto the sidewalk, enveloping passerby as well as the scantily clad greeters.