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Two Macy's Backstage stores to launch on LI

Macy's Backstage store will be opening at the

Macy's Backstage store will be opening at the Melville Mall in Huntington, seen on Thursday, Aug. 27, 2015. At Backstage, employees are called "stage crew." Credit: David L. Pokress

Department store chain Macy's will open four off-price stores called Macy's Backstage next month, including two on Long Island, which are among the first of these locations opening across the country.

Macy's Backstage stores, which are a fifth of the size of a regular Macy's store, will be located at the Lake Success Shopping Center in New Hyde Park and at the Melville Mall in Huntington, located north of the Northern State Parkway on Route 110.

The Melville Mall store and the other stores in Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn, and Queens Place in Elmhurst will officially open Wednesday. The Lake Success Shopping Center store will open Sept. 19.

"We are a New York-centric company," Vanessa LeFebvre, senior vice president of Macy's Backstage, said Thursday at the Melville Mall store's "soft" opening. "It felt right to open close to home. That way we have a chance to experiment."

The openings come after Macy's said in February it was exploring an off-price retailing business similar to T.J. Maxx, Ross and Nordstrom Rack. This would be the first off-price business for Macy's. The Macy's Backstage stores will offer off-price, discount, clearance and full-price items. They will also sell some brands Macy's normally doesn't offer.

"We see this as the younger sister to Macy's," LeFebvre said. "We see this as a way to cultivate new customers," such as millennials and young mothers. "It is giving people exposure to what Macy's had to offer in our full stores."

The grand opening for the Melville Mall store, which replaced a shuttered Kohl's, will start Wednesday at 9:30 a.m. The nearly 35,000-square-foot store sells products ranging from $1 to $1,500, with an average price of $200. The store will employ about 45 people.

The merchandise will include women's, men's and children's clothing, cosmetics, fine jewelry, shoes, toys, home furnishings, housewares and bed and bath items. The stores also offer charging stations and dressing rooms with tri-fold mirrors.

"Everything is in order," said Linda Weinfeld, of Melville, a real estate agent, who walked in when she noticed the store was open and walked out with makeup, sweaters and socks. "It is so nice. It is a pleasure."

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