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The Best Retail Contractors in New York City (2022)

July 25, 2022 18 Min Read

New York has a strong economy, a burgeoning job market, and a diverse economy. As the city grows, construction and development will continue to be on the rise, and many enterprises are responding to the demand by establishing commercial stores in the area.

The list below includes the best retail contractors in New York City, selected based on their accreditations, certifications, and professional affiliations. Our editorial team also considered their industry awards, client reviews, and press features. Check out the list below to learn about the range of services the firms offer, their specializations, and the length of time they have been in the industry.

Shawmut Design and Construction

3 East 54th Street, 10th Floor, New York, NY 10022

Shawmut Design and Construction is a leading construction manager in New York for 30 years. It has a diverse and dedicated team committed to better building experience for their clients. The firm is proudly 100% employee-owned, ensuring that everyone in the company has a stake in its future. Shawmut prides itself on its extensive nationwide portfolio made of extremely complex and logistically challenging projects for some of the most high-profile clients in the industry. Fortune awarded Shawmut the Best Workplaces Award. Shawmut has done construction projects for institutions, commercial, tenant, museums, and healthcare systems.

Project by Shawmut Design and Construction

Shawmut built the Bucherer TimeMachine on the 57th St, or formerly known as the Tourneau TimeMachine. The company worked on renovating the space completely, from complex structural work, complete relocation of the staircase, and to the finer luxury details. The whole project has lounges, three bars, and high-tech video installations.

JRM Construction Management

242 West 36th St, 11th Floor New York, NY 10018

JRM Construction is a construction management and general contracting firm based in New York City. The firm was founded by David McWilliams and specializes in commercial interiors and retail construction. The company takes pride in its accountability, diversity, teamwork, and excellence.

Project by JRM Construction Management

JRM Construction recently completed work on the Gucci NYC Flagship Store, Gucci’s largest retail establishment. The construction featured four floors of selling space, three glass-enclosed floors, and a striking staircase made of brass and glass. JRM Construction Work has been recognized with awards, including the IFMA Award for Excellence and the Thea Award.

Holt Construction

875 Avenue of the Americas, Suite #1100, New York, NY 10001

Holt Construction Corporation is a full-service construction firm offering general contracting, construction management, and design-build services. The firm was originally founded in 1919 by Fred Holt and is now led by CEO Jack Holt. Holt Construction stands on three core values: building lasting relationships, upholding respect, honesty, and integrity, and maintaining harmony and efficiency.

Project by Holt Construction

Holt Construction Corporation completed a retail store fit-out at the iconic Westfield World Trade Center Oculus. The space was designed to mimic the exterior of a vintage oak wine barrel, which is more evident when viewing the 40-foot ceiling. The modern rustic motif is echoed by the floor-to-ceiling white oak cabinets filled with wine from across the globe, along with specialty display lighting to illuminate the products. At the back of the space are state-of-the-art refrigerators to house specialty wines with built-in display lights. Behind the coolers are a combined office and kitchen area that serves as a venue for free wine tasting events.

Mc Gowan Builders

160 East Union Ave, East Rutherford, NJ 07073

With a team of over sixty professionals, the East Rutherford-based Mc Gowan has become an industry leader characterized by its highly collaborative, team-spirited culture. It has a proud core of executives, each with more than thirty-five years of experience. Aside from new construction and additions, the firm also specializes in conversions, renovations, and interior construction across multiple sectors. CEO Patrick McGowan founded the company in 2001 after 20 years of construction experience in New York.

Project by Mc Gowan Builders

McGowan handled the demolition and construction to make the Wonder Photo Shop for Fujifilm a reality in New York City. In addition to a retail offering, the Wonder Photo Shop hosts a print area, photo booth, DIY Lounge, the Cash Wrap, as well as the Lab and inventory areas where visitors can directly connect their smartphones to create prints and explore traditional services like printing and studio photography. The new space utilizes environmentally sensitive materials and contemporary design translated through custom millwork, vinyl plank flooring, Terra Mia wood wall panels, painted partitions, and a new coffee bar.

Reidy Contracting Group

58 W 40th St, 2nd Floor, New York, NY 10018

Reidy Contracting Group works with some of New York’s most well-known names to provide exceptional general contracting and construction management services, and it has been doing so since 2010. The firm successfully handles a wide range of client needs through its extensive renovation, new construction, construction infrastructure, and refurbishment solutions. The firm is staffed by highly competent and qualified experts to execute in-house budgeting and estimation, purchasing, pre-construction, construction phase scheduling, quality control, value engineering, and strong partnerships with experienced subcontractors.

Project by Reidy Contracting Group

The firm’s expansive portfolio includes numerous corporate, hospitality, infrastructure and mission-critical, media, health and fitness, and retail projects. One example is the first permanent retail space for the mattress brand, Casper. The store is filled with oversized and surreal objects that create a whimsical landscape to explore the future of sleep. Reidy also constructed this retail space for CAMP with a storefront, a full kitchen, and a milk bar. The firm integrated structural steel, architectural woodwork, and HVAC.

The firm has also received several awards for its work, including the 2021 Project of the Year Award in the 25,000 to 50,000 RSF Category from CoreNet Global New York, the 2020 Award of Merit from ENR New York for the LMCC Arts Center at Governor’s Island, and 2019 Best of Year Award: Best Small Corporate Office for Soros Capital Management from Interior Design Magazine.

EW Howell

48 West 37th St, 2nd FL, New York, NY 10018

With a rich history spanning 125 years, E.W. Howell has built a strong reputation in the New York City construction industry. E.W. Howell Construction Group was founded in 1891 by Elmer Howell and George Brown and is now led by the current president, Howard Rowland. The firm specializes in construction projects in the retail, education, government, cultural, and healthcare industries. By keeping up to date with the most current building technologies and innovations, E.W. Howell continues to be one of NYC’s most prominent construction firms.

Project by EW Howell

E.W. Howell has completed multiple Lowe’s stores, including this new construction in Garden City. The 126,482-square-foot retail store was built with a 15,196 square-foot outdoor garden center. The company has also constructed over sixteen Target stores in the span of 25 years. Target stores range from 120,000 to 150,000 square feet and include a dry goods grocery area.


126 5th Ave. 9/F, New York, NY 10011

Michilli, Inc. was founded by Angelo Michilli in 1999. Michilli provides construction and consulting services, from offices and retail boutiques to private residences. Their work’s consistency is reflected throughout all sizes and locations of their projects. The film follows three key commitments as they build: constant communication with their client, responding to challenges as they arise, and delivering the client’s needs within the client’s budget.

Project by Michilli

In addition to construction services, Michilli provides special project services, including air conditioner installations, architectural probes, and electrical retrofits. Michilli is affiliated with multiple construction-related organizations, including the ICSC, the AIA, NFPA, the American Chamber of Commerce in Italy, the Retail Design Institute Environmental Protection Agency, the National Italian American Foundation, and Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED).

One of Michilli’s most prominent projects is this Google store in Chelsea, New York. Full height light oak paneling and columns, and coordinated millwork for displaying Google devices. Bolon carpet throughout gives the space a warmer feel. There are several individual experience areas and rooms, including a one-of-a-kind suspended glass “Magic Space” with surrounding video screens.

Schimenti Construction Company

575 Lexington Ave, 18th Floor, New York, NY 10022

Schimenti Construction Company is an industry-leading and relationship-driven construction management firm. With 25 years of experience in the construction industry, Schimenti Construction, with 300+ experts, has specialized in complete ground-up developments and store build-outs, structural renovations, store build-outs, and general interior remodeling. The firm has projects in various sectors including retail, hospitality, corporate, commercial, and industrial.

Project by Schimenti Construction Company

The company takes a solutions-based approach which recognizes their ability to build better for people, clients, and communities.

The LEED-certified store spans two floors and contains 6,000 square feet of retail space. The store is digitally enabled, offering a revolutionary, data-driven experience for shoppers. This Nike store is the first to break barriers, featuring a gender-neutral apparel section with extended sizing.

Vanguard Construction & Co.

350 Fifth Ave, Suite #5500, New York, NY 10118

Vanguard Construction & Co. was established by Michael Strauss in 1986. The New York City-based general contractor and construction management firm has earned a reputation for its efforts and ability to manage complex projects throughout the city over the years.

Project by Vanguard Construction & Co.

He has 40 years of experience overseeing complex construction projects, from high-end interiors to ground-up. His background, which encompasses serving as president of the NY AIA Center for Architecture Foundation, has been instrumental for Vanguard in executing commissions.

Vanguard renovated the women’s shoe floor of Saks Fifth Avenue. The firm provided new lighting and controls, marble floors and custom carpets, architectural metal screens, and reconfigured MEPS/FA. The team took care of coordination for high-end mirror, metal, glass, and millwork display fixtures, upholstered seating, and loose furniture. Painted temporary walls were also maintained to appear “front-of-house” while ensuring sprinkler and security coverage for customers and staff remained through each phase.

Aurora Contractors

100 Raynor Ave, Ronkonkoma, NY 11779

Aurora Contractors, founded by Frank Vero, Sr. in 1983, provides high-quality build-outs while maintaining competitive pricing. The company specializes in retail, industrial, corporate, hospitality, and recreational building projects. Providing creative solutions from the contracting phase through the end of construction, they aim to exceed expectations while developing lasting relationships.

Project by Aurora Contractors

Aurora is a general contractor with design-build and construction management abilities and a varied and expansive portfolio all over New York. Its work has garnered accolades such as the Commercial Project of the Year Award from the Queens Chamber of Commerce and the Top Hospitality Development Real Estate Award.

Aurora Contractors was selected by Macy’s to act as the general contractor for their three-story, 160,000 SF store at the mall located in Bay Plaza in the Bronx, New York. The project features an extensive amount of marble, glass, and LED lighting, giving shoppers a very unique experience.

Plaza Construction

360 Lexington Ave, 2nd Floor, New York, NY 10017

Plaza Construction is a well-known construction management and general contracting firm in the United States. Since its establishment in 1986, the company has expanded into an interdisciplinary practice with regional offices in New Jersey, Washington, Miami, Tampa, Orlando, Los Angeles, and San Jose.

Project by Plaza Construction

The company is led by Peter Wu, a construction industry specialist with over 30 years of experience supervising creative building and civil construction projects globally, including in the United States, Asia, and the Middle East. During the previous 12 years, Peter has been associated with the growth of the heavy civil construction sector in the US, and he has managed the company as it has completed several large projects.

Plaza has experience in construction, real estate, investment, and development management. Plaza’s aggregate experience spans numerous industries, and its uniqueness originates from understanding what it takes to be an owner, developer, and builder. With three decades of experience, the firm plays a vital role in the construction of retail spaces such as Ferragamo USA, Inc.

Plaza renovated Ferragamo’s private showrooms, main building lobby, corporate executive offices, and elevator modernization. In addition, the complete MEP system was replaced, including the mechanical cooling tower and riser system, steam station, core bathrooms, electrical service, and fire protection systems. Connecting floors four through six is a cantilevered limestone staircase with ornamental metal railings and glass panels.

Structure Tone

330 West 34th St, New York, NY 10001

Known for its office interior buildout work in the city, Structure Tone has constructed spaces valuing over $1.8 billion, and with a total area of 2.17 million square feet. Michael Neary heads the firm as president, while Eugene Peter White is its executive vice president. Together, they lead the company in working on some of the largest projects in New York City. Structure Tone is the core of a family of companies that include LF Driscoll, Structure Tone Southwest, Pavarini Construction Co., Pavarini McGovern and Govan Brown. The firm employs 350 professionals in New York, all of whom are trained in a client first mentality. Among its many accolades, Structure Tone received the ACEC Platinum Award.

Project by Structure Tone

With Structure Tone’s extensive showroom experience, the firm successfully constructed this Lamborghini showroom. The two-story, gallery-style venue offers a wide array of private rooms and meeting spaces for guests. The team imported high-end finishes and featured Italian luxury manufacturers throughout, creating a true “Made in Italy” experience. The full-service kitchen is available to host private gatherings with trademark Italian furnishings.

L&K Partners

104 East 25th St, 9th Floor, New York, NY 10010

Founded in 1997, L&K Partners, INC. is a construction management and general contracting firm with experience covering a wide range of commercial sectors and project types ranging from interior fit-outs to new core and shell buildings. Over the course of their 25 years of business, the firm has cemented partnerships with several globally influential companies, and including 5 of the top 10 Fortune 500 financial companies as well as each of the top 5 technology companies in the world. The L&K team is comprised of architects, engineers, quantity surveyors, and cost managers, providing valuable specialization to find the smartest solution for each project.

Project by L&K Partners

Included in L&K Partners’ robust retail portfolio is its recent renovation and interior build-out of the Levi Strauss headquarters and showroom in New York City. The 45,000 square foot space provides workspace and meeting areas for several Levi brand teams, as well as display and storage space for seasonal and sample product storage. The showroom and gallery includes a private shopping suite and runway. The Levi brand is integrated throughout the space with full wall video boards, showroom displays, and creative graphics.

King Rose Construction

375 East 163rd St, Bronx, NY 10451

King Rose Construction was founded in 2007 in New York, and over the years, it has grown a portfolio of New York projects. King Rose is responsible for the construction of many landmark projects in New York City, including the International Cosmetics & Perfumes, Inc., House of Creed’s Madison Avenue boutique, and Tourneau TimeMachine. The firm is also strongly dedicated to sustainability, boasting an Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Lead-Safe Certification.

Project by King Rose Construction

Yoel Borgenicht leads King Rose’s field operations and staff development. His 21 years in the industry have molded him into a NY State Supreme Court certified expert in construction estimating. He imparts his construction know-how to King Rose’s collection of retail projects.

King Rose transformed a former bank space into the Macklowe Gallery in Manhattan. The building includes a first-floor main gallery space, a mezzanine library, and a lower-level showroom for their extended collection of decorative arts pieces sought by private collectors and museums from around the globe. In the employee-only spaces of the gallery, King Rose built a large open office, a kitchen/break room, a photo studio, a mailroom, and additional storage spaces.

MG & Company

350 7th Ave, New York, NY 10001

Mark Goldberg started MG & Company, where he puts 40 years of experience into practice. Specializing in construction services for new buildings, slender hi-rise structures, complex gut renovations, and interior programs, the firm currently serves diverse market sectors including food service, residential, commercial, office interiors, and retail. The principal’s in-depth experience as a construction professional leads him to gain a deep understanding of the visions and goals of clients and designers and execute them with the utmost quality. MG & Company is proud of its portfolio of successful projects not only within the New York metropolitan area but also around the US. Its work has been spotlighted in The Architectural Digest, American Luxury, and the New York Post.

Project by MG & Company

MG & Company was selected as construction managers in the design-build phases of this flagship store for Derek Lam. The clean simplicity of the design, the incorporation of 12-foot high custom curved acrylic walls throughout, and the attention to detail required by the award-winning architects made this project both challenging and exciting for the construction team. Following the successful completion of the store, MG & Company was contracted for a full build out of the Derek Lam Headquarters, covering 10,500 square feet over two higher floors of the same building.