The eagle has landed.
After the surprising and unwelcome discovery in June that their lease at 14 Gingerbread Lane in East Hampton would not be renewed, Nancy and Tom Rowan, owners of the Golden Eagle, embarked on a search for a new location. Meanwhile, patrons of the local institution mourned the imminent loss of their go-to provider of fine art supplies, children’s art supplies and toys, and fun and unusual gifts. After a 30, then 50, then 75-percent-off sale, the store on Gingerbread Lane closed in mid-September.
Happily, the owners’ search was successful, and the Golden Eagle is now open at 79 Newtown Lane, across the street from the East Hampton Middle School. All of the store’s employees, plus a new staffer, have moved with the business.
The new space, at 800 square feet, represents a considerable downsizing of the Golden Eagle’s footprint, but there is a silver lining, Ms. Rowan said. “We went with this store because there is a big basement and a second floor,” she said, explaining that a search that had spanned Amagansett to Bridgehampton turned up only locations lacking storage or other usable space. “We’ve trimmed the fat and gotten rid of things that didn’t sell — whatever wasn’t selling at 75 percent off did not come with us. We’ve become incredibly organized. Although the space is much smaller, we’re carrying, for the most part, everything we had before.”
One component that did not follow the business to Newtown Lane is the art instruction offered to adults and children at its Gingerbread Lane location. “Sadly, we can’t do classes right now,” Ms. Rowan said. For now, she said, “We’re going to take a year and focus on the store — that’s how we started in the last space. Once it is up and running and doing well we’re going to look into classes.”
At the new location, however, the Golden Eagle offers significantly more gift items than before. Given its close proximity to the other retailers on Newtown Lane and Main Street, it is also a convenient location for gift-wrapping. “We’re excited for the upcoming Christmas season. It’s our favorite time and we love to wrap for people,” Ms. Rowan said. “People can come after they’ve shopped in the village, drop off their packages, and we wrap them for a small price.”
A wall of the new location is dedicated to local professional artists, and Scott Hewett, Ms. Rowan said, recently brought his work for display. “This painting is massive,” she said, surveying the new space’s cathedral ceiling on Tuesday morning.
The Golden Eagle is open daily from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. except Sunday, when it is open from 11 to 5.
“We’re thrilled about it,” Ms. Rowan said. “It’s a new beginning for us.”