New York City-based Posman Books is slated to open a fifth location, this time in Boston, by summer. The bookstore will be the second Posman’s to open nationally this year and the first new bookstore to open in the city’s Back Bay neighborhood in a generation. According to Posman v-p Robert Fader, the store will also house an ice cream parlor.
The 1500 sq. ft. store will occupy two storefronts among the boutique stores on Newbury St., with 1,000 sq. ft. devoted to books, and the remainder for the ice cream shop. By genre, the store’s selection will lean heavily toward fiction and children’s books, but Fader said that the location affords Posman’s the ability to stock an “untraditional” book selection similar to the Chelsea Market store. “We want this store to be unexpected,” Fader said. “If it’s good, it will translate.”
By embracing an offbeat approach to title selection—and having an ice cream parlor instead of a café—Fader hopes the new store will avoid creating competition for nearby Trident Booksellers and Café. “We’re aware that there’s Trident Books at the other end of Newbury St.,” Fader said. “I think one of the things we want to be is clearly different than Trident and not going after the customers that Trident is going after.”
Posman began looking at the Boston location at the invitation of Jamestown, the real estate company responsible for redevelopment of Chelsea Market, where Posman has one of its two New York City locations. Jamestown sold Chelsea Market to Google in March 2018. Not long after Posman’s signed a lease on the Boston location, Jamestown sold the Boston property to another development company.
Fader said that the new landlord has supported the buildout, adding that "they really like the concept and really want to see it through."
This spring, Posman will add another new store in the Atlanta suburb of Alpharetta. The company also has an existing location nearby in Atlanta’s Ponce City Market. Fader told PW that the family-owned indie-chain is “always looking” for new locations, and has often explored locations at the suggestion of developers.
As for the Boston location, Fader said Posman’s is open to letting the store take shape over time, and curious about the directions it might take. “It may be that once we’re up and running on Newbury Street we’ll be more traditional. Or not,” Fader said. Either way, he added, “we hope people in Boston will like it.”