I’ve been to New York City at Christmas time before, but usually just limiting our stops to Macy’s, Toys R Us, F.A.O. Schwarz (when it was still in business), and Rockefeller Plaza.
I guess I didn’t pay too much attention to the windows displays on our visits, but apparently it’s a big deal.
Well now you don’t even have to leave your house to get an up close look at these spectacular windows displays, thanks to Google Maps and Google Shopping.
New York’s holiday window tradition dates back nearly 150 years. This year, Google has created a special Window Wonderland Walkthrough allowing you to take a virtual walk through the streets of Manhattan, past Santa’s high-tech command center, cotton candy couture gowns, ice skating bunny rabbits, and the gang from “South Park.”
Here is the list of stores in the walkthrough, along with a description of the display taken from the walkthrough web site:
- Lord & Taylor’s “Enchanted Forest” display takes you on a whimsical winter journey with a wonderland filled with 34 hand-sculpted holiday animals.
- Macy’s 2016 holiday windows salute nine years of the “Believe” campaign, combining the wonder of modern technology with stunning visuals and an extra dose of holiday nostalgia.
- Bloomingdale’s Holiday windows feature one-of-a-kind chandeliers created by a group of dynamic artists. They will be auctioned off to support the Child Mind Institute.
- Bergdorf Goodman’s “Destination Extraordinary” holiday displays depict a dreamlike itinerary of lush locales, unexpected landscapes, and verdant gardens.
- Tiffany & Co.’s holiday windows depict a dazzling New York City and capture the sparkle of the season.
- Barneys New York’s 2016 holiday display is the “#LovePeaceJoyProject”, featuring Nick Cave, Rob Pruitt, Studio Job, and Trey Parker and Matt Stone of Comedy Central’s South Park.
- Saks Fifth Avenue transforms its flagship store unto a “Land of 100 delights”, with enchanting landscapes of colorful candy and fabulous festive fashion.
- Polo Ralph Lauren’s “Home for the Holidays” celebrates the season in iconic Polo style, with cozy cashmere, timeless tartans, and the perfect present for everyone on your list.
- Burberry’s festive windows feature white-honeycomb orbs inspired by origami, with mirrors creating an infinity effect.
- Louis Vuitton’s display presents winter animals in their snowy native habitat. Like opening a music box, the animals come to lie animated by golden and crystal clear gears.
- Henri Bendel presents from Bendel with Love, a collaboration with renowned street artist and creator of the Love Wall, James Goldcrown.
- abc carpet & home wants you to feel the heart at the center of the we. We the people, we love, we give, we connect, we coexist, we vision. We partner, we create we serve. We heal, we rise, we believe, we shine, we have a ream.
- American Girl’s “Joy Is Dreaming of Holiday magic” display celebrate’s a girl’s excitement and anticipation during this special time of year.
- Michael Kors’ holiday windows at its flagship store at Rockefeller Center’s are inspired by the word “shine”, and feature giant red and gold holiday bows floating and spinning amidst the best gifts of the season.
- Fendi’s holiday window concept is a sensorial and visual experience sliding between ironic and graphic, and linked to the Fendi DNA.
- Cartier’s Fifth Avenue Mansion has magic inside its snowy windows. View scenes inspired by the Cartier flagship boutiques across the world.
- Tory Burch was inspired by a black-and-white sketch on her family’s Christmas card when she was growing up. The cross-stitch birch trees nod to her father’s love of needlepoint
For each window display, there is the option to listen to the creator of the window display provide some background about the store’s window display. For example, the Macy’s spokesperson notes that between 10 and 15 thousand people walk past the Macy’s window display every hour! There is also the option to take a 360 degree look around the surrounding area.
Like I noted earlier, I was completely unaware of this tradition (I was probably too busy keeping track of how much the visit to NYC was costing us), but now that I’ve seen this virtual walkthrough, I want to go up there and see the windows in person.
Seems like it would be quite the day, strolling the streets of New York City with my fam and a cup of hot coffee…