New York’s 5th Avenue, Ranked No. 1 in the World’s Most Expensive Retail Locations

Hong Kong’s Causeway Bay no. 2 in Global Rankings; LA’s Rodeo Drive no.2 in Americas as Highest Retail Rents

NEW YORK, New York – Cushman & Wakefield has released the 29th edition of its global flagship report, Main Streets Across the World, and New York’s 5th Avenue (between 49th – 60th Streets) is listed as the most expensive location in the world (*see table listing below).

The report tracks 451 of the top retail streets around the globe, ranking the most expensive in 68 countries by their prime rental value and enabling an analysis of trends in retail real estate performance.

The top-five global city locations include: 1. New York’s 5th Avenue (49th – 60th Streets); 2. Hong Kong’s Causeway Bay; 3. London’s New Bond Street; 4. Milan’s Via Montenapoleone; and 5. Paris’ Avenue des Champs Elysees.

In the Americas, the list’s top five includes: 1. New York’s 5th Avenue (49th – 60th Streets); 2. Los Angeles’ Rodeo Drive; 3. San Francisco’s Union Square; 4. Chicago’s North Michigan Avenue; and 5. Miami’s Lincoln Road.

"Today's shopping experience is evolving, with retail's transformation driven by factors like experiential bricks-and-mortar environments, omni-channel shopping, and supply chain innovations," said David Gorelick, Executive Managing Director and Head of Retail for the Americas at Cushman & Wakefield. "In New York City, the environment is especially competitive, and brands who call Manhattan home set the pace for retail globally. We know that international luxury brands will continue to look to high streets to support their plans for expansion -- and as retailers search for new opportunities to connect with consumers, the market will undoubtedly respond in ways that leverage the unique overlap between the retail, industrial, and eCommerce sectors."

According to the ‘Main Streets across the World’ report, in the U.S., a number of retail submarkets in New York’s Manhattan recorded lower asking rents and higher availability at the mid-year point, including SoHo, Times Square and Meatpacking.  However, the top-tier market, Fifth Avenue (between 49th Street to 60th Street), continues to command the highest asking rent both locally and globally for direct and subleased space.  In June, the asking rent was $3,000 USD per sq.ft, unchanged from 2016, albeit nearly 20% up over five years and back to its pre-GFC level. 

The food hall concept continues to expand rapidly throughout Manhattan and one of the most significant recent announcements was the Cipriani family’s plans to open a new 28,000 sq.ft specialty market in the base of a new Upper West Side residential development at Two Waterline Square/30 Riverside Boulevard at West End Avenue.  Trader Joe’s also announced an additional supermarket commitment for 22,500 sq.ft at 432 East 14th Street in the East Village, a proposed residential development near First Avenue.

The long-term outlook for the Manhattan retail market remains optimistic, with healthy consumer spending driven by steady employment growth and New York City’s dominance in commerce, culture, and tourism.

Across the Americas as a whole, recent economic growth has been encouraging and looks set to remain so in 2018, however, retail real estate trends have varied across the region’s diverse set of markets, according to the report’s author, Darren Yates, Head of EMEA Retail Research, at Cushman & Wakefield.

“While the growth of online retail is a common theme in all of America’s markets, retailing in much of Latin America is still maturing. However, most of the region’s developed cities now have high quality retail developments which cater for a variety of income groups, including a rapidly growing middle class,” Mr. Yates said. 

“In the US, while there has been a lot of discussion around store closures, the main high street markets have not been as adversely affected as some of the headlines might suggest. The fact is that most retailers are not turning their backs on high street locations,” he said.

*Below is the Americas’ Top 20 listing in the ‘Main Streets across the World’ Global Report

About Cushman & Wakefield

Cushman & Wakefield is a leading global real estate services firm that helps clients transform the way people work, shop, and live. Our 45,000 employees in more than 70 countries help occupiers and investors optimize the value of their real estate by combining our global perspective and deep local knowledge with an impressive platform of real estate solutions. Cushman & Wakefield is among the largest commercial real estate services firms with revenue of $6 billion across core services of agency leasing, asset services, capital markets, facility services (C&W Services), global occupier services, investment & asset management (DTZ Investors), project & development services, tenant representation, and valuation & advisory. 2017 marks the 100-year anniversary of the Cushman & Wakefield brand. 100 years of taking our clients’ ideas and putting them into action. To learn more, visit, or follow @CushWake on Twitter.