Modern Living: Quinta Strada

The Italians are coming, the Italians are coming—to New York City. Their beachhead: Fifth Avenue, the home of Saks, Tiffany and the Easter Parade. Their mission: to plant the red-white-and-green flag of Italian luxury products—from $50 silk scarves to $150,000 necklaces—profitably in American turf. At last count, in an eleven-block stretch of Fifth Avenue in midtown Manhattan, there were eleven Italian botteghe, each one apparently striving to be the most exclusive shop on its block. "Fifth Avenue?" asks the proprietress of one recent arrival. "Oh, you must mean La Quinta Strada."

The...

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