Originally Posted by Edward Appleby
As far as Neiman's goes, I've always been happy. The men's people are perfectly polite, though of course not extraordinarily knowledgeable (but that's the case with 90% of stores.) I've always been pleasantly suprised by the salesgirls in the women's furnishings, so to speak, department. I go in always go in around Mother's Day and Christmas to get stuff for my mom, hardly spending anything, and they always help me find something nice in my budget.
Also, as far as the Needless Markups comments, yes it's a fun pun, but there are far worse offenders (Korshak, Louis, BG, Wilkes, etc.)
I hate NM. I've gotten mediocre to poor service at any NM I've been to, and I've been to them all over the country, from LA (mediocre) to SF (a bunch of rude queens) and Houston Galleria (a bunch of rude fat dudes in poorly fitting suits). It's too bad, because the selection at the Wilshire one in LA has some decent stuff and better markdowns than the nearby Barneys and Saks, and the SF sometimes has okay things as well. However, in SF, the Saks Men's store (on the 5th, advanced designers department) has great service and a better selection than any other Saks (the NYC one has more, but are less discriminating) that I nearly always by something there. And I find the service at all the Barneys CO-OP and designer stores to be consistently good.
Korshak has really high markups - I think that they rely on rich, ignorant clientele. BG is high, but not significantly higher than the NYC average, ime. Wilkes, I haven't been to in a while, but I don't remember their stuff being marked up to much. On the other hand, Louis, with some notable exceptions, has lower markups (about 5-10%) than Maxfield or NYC boutiques for similar items (I am thinking of a specific Cloak piece as I write this.) On the other hand, they tend to carry merchandise over to the next season more than Maxfield, for example, which literally clears everything out. Of course, Debi Greenberg doesn't hold a candle to Tommy Perse as a buyer. I think that in Boston, only Alan Bilzerian is in the same league as the big boys in LA and NYC.