Yes! This is the new Target at 117th & Pleasant in E. Harlem. While the official opening isn't until July 25, I ventured there last night with my friend, Melinda A., who is blessed to live only 2 blocks away. I didn't realize the store had a soft opening until I read it on Uptown Flavor. My friend had also called me from Target this week telling me how quiet and well stocked it was since virtually no one knew of the soft opening. So last night I had to find out for myself!
It's on the 2nd level of the shopping complex and the escalator delivers customers right to the door. I had read snippets in the press that the bus takes you door-to-door and having been familiar with the m116 bus, that is definitely not true. While you do have to walk about a block and make a turn to get there from the bus in no way, shape, or form is it door-to-door.
I LOVE the artwork for the new Target, and they have it plastered along the outside storefront. I seriously got butterflies in my stomach when I saw the sign pictured above: "Hello Harlem" - "Wow, they're talking to me!!!" I thought. Here's the fliers that were being passed out as customers entered:
Now those of you reading this blog who are not in NYC are probably wondering why this is such a big deal for the city. Well, NYC is very anti-big box stores and while we've had pop-up Targets over the years, many residents have desired to be have the store be a permanent fixture on our island. At last our prayers have been answered!
The store was indeed well stocked, and while it wasn't crowded, there were still small waits at the check-out lines. There were quite a few children running around that I was surprised about, but there is security at the door, and I'm sure as it gets busier they'll crack down on unsupervised children. On another note, I was disappointed at the trash on the floor in the bathroom. The store hadn't even been open a week and there was strewn toilet paper, empty bags and hangers throughout. Perhaps it was just in-between cleanings, but I'll re-check how it is on my next visit.
Now I had told myself I wouldn't purchase anything, but I keep an ongoing shopping list for various stores around the city, and I checked my Target list which included "slippers for hospital," so I was compelled to check out the inventory. I was thinking more along the lines of ballet style slippers, but saw in the shoe section they only had winter-type fuzzy slippers. I kept looking and ventured over to the socks section where I found these:
Aren't they cute? I happened to find an abandoned Target gift card in the bottom of my wallet which helped subsidize their $6 price tag! I already feel more confident going into labor knowing that I'll have these on ;-)
While I do like this new Target and will probably visit on the occasions I'm on the east side, the Target in the Bronx is much closer to me and is neat and relatively well-stocked so I'll alternate my visits between the two. Now that my lil' sister is moving to E. Harlem (she'll be living a short walk from the Target), and I have 2 other friends living there, I'll have plenty of reasons to visit and compare inventory!
Wanna see more pictures of the glorious Target? Check them out here.