Terminal 4 gets shopping makeover as expansion project continues
New York JFK’s Terminal 4 is the midst of an exciting $1.2 billion makeover. The aim of the overhaul is to make the whole place bigger, more efficient and user friendly. Security will be quicker; nine new gates are being added and a high-tech baggage system is being installed. When all the work is finally done travellers will undoubtedly have more time to spend their cash in what has always been a decent line up of shops and restaurants.Admittedly, there has been an awful lot for passengers to put up with during the lengthy building work. Terminal 4 is big and busy, handling around 10 million passengers a year and home to Delta and scores of other international and domestic carriers. The expansion project has necessitated building a whole new fourth floor to house security and immigration, which has of course caused a considerable amount of disruption.All the inconvenience is in a good cause, however. The project will boost Terminal 4’s capacity to around 15 million passengers a year, and making transiting to other JFK terminals easier. It will also put more retail space behind security and immigration, which is an important step in this post-9/11 world, where most people prefer to clear the arduous security process before thinking about shopping or finding a place to grab a bite to eat.At the moment, however, travellers will find a sizeable chunk of Terminal 4’s shopping and dining offer in the pre-security Main Retail Hall on the Third Floor. There is a strong fashion line up in this part of the terminal with at least three multi-brand boutiques. New York Fashion features street fashion label Zoo York, sportswear classic line Puma, Italian leather goods brand Zippo and US sunglass brand Oakley. The aptly named Exclusive features high-end European names such as Zegna, Ferragamo and Hermes, while Fashion stocks Guess, Hugo Boss, Juicy Couture, and men’s swimwear line Vilebrequin.
Is that enough fashion for you? Well, there is plenty more pre-security if your wardrobe needs updating. Racy US lingerie chain Victoria’s Secret has a store, for instance, as does Austrian crystal jewellery brand Swarovski. Leather goods house Fossil has an outlet here too. At Voyager you will find stylish luggage and bags from the likes of Longchamp, Tumi and Kipling.There could and should be a stronger electronics offer at Terminal 4, but if you need a new pair of headphones to watch a movie on your iPad or listen to some music on your MP3 player, head to Bluwire Electronics, which stocks a wide range of cool, wireless headphones (see www.bluwire1.com). Alternatively, if you want a more traditional way of whiling away the time during your flight, Hudson News has a number of outlets in this part of the airport, which stock a wide range of newspapers, books and magazines.The range of souvenir shops in the Main Retail Hall is pretty poor and our advice would be to head airside if you need to buy a last-minute gift. The excellent Metropolitan Museum of Art shop in B Concourse is thoroughly recommended. Choose from superb wall hangings, desk trinkets, arty jewellery, watches and coffee table books. Look out for new lines linked to upcoming exhibitions opening at the museum downtown. For more details on what you are likely to find in this store, see http://store.metmuseum.org/.Once airside at Terminal 4 it has to be said the retail selection is pretty limited. Let’s hope this state of affairs is being remedied by the ongoing refit. The undoubted highlight of the current line up in both Concourses A and B are the DFS duty-free shops. Around 90% of passengers are flying from Terminal 4 are on international flights so duty-free is definitely big business. DFS is a top-class retailer and the selection on offer in these two outlets is wide, especially when it comes to fragrances and fashion labels. For a peek at the latest launches and promotions, log on to http://www.dfsgalleria.com/en/north-america/.
When New York JFK’s Terminal 4 first opened its doors in May 2001, the $1.4 billion-building marked a highpoint for JFK, introducing travellers to a whole new world of upscale airport shopping and dining seldom found elsewhere in the US. The dreadful terror attacks of 9/11 a few months later, however, quickly made the landside-heavy retail layout inconvenient for passengers.
The current renovation works should go a long way to restoring Terminal 4’s fortunes, however. Details of the new retail line up are under wraps for now, but when they are announced rest assured we will let you know which brands and boutiques have taken up residence in the new-look terminal.