A.R.C. Alife Rivington Club
158 Rivington Street
New York, NY 10002
In some circles, a pair of just-released or limited edition Nike or Adidas sneakers can have more social cachet than-and cost just as much as-the right pair of Manolo Blahniks. So if your style is more Neptunes than Nikki Hilton, check out Lower East Side sneaker store Alife Rivington Club, which bears no resemblance to Foot Locker. With no exterior signage and a barely-marked buzzer to let customers in the locked door, the shop has the feel of a James Bond-style gentleman’s club: Purple carpeting covers the floor, a low, green leather couch runs against an ostrich-skin wall, and, opposite the couch, numerous individually lit, built-in cubbyholes display the shop’s undeniably cool sneakers. Above the cubbies, more sneakers sit behind locked glass. Featuring the absolute latest and highest-end styles from all the major brands, the sneaker stock rotates often, with new arrivals coming in about once a week. Hot items sell out quickly, however, and in order to make room for the Next Big Thing, Alife doesn’t restock. So if you want a certain pair, act fast.
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