was the kind of store to make mommies-to-be drool and grandmas-in-waiting rip out the gold card. A luxury store in the Crosspointe Town Square shopping center, catering to creating the luxe childhood of which dreams are made.
Then the Recession of '08 happened, and luxury stores in middle class hit the skids.
Last November, Destination Baby was shuttered amid bankruptcy proceedings. But come Wednesday, June 6, expectant mothers and the families that love them and the coming baby can pick up some high-end baby items for a song.
That's because the store fittings, fixtures, and tons of baby merchandise left behind when the store closed will go to the highest bidder. Caspert Management, an "industrial, commercial, and institutional" auctioneer from Englewood Cliffs, will be putting the store's entire contents up for sale.
The auction starts at 11 am, with a preview at 9 am.
Although many of the company's auctions are usually attended by companies who snap up goods in bulk for resale, regular retail customers looking for a bargain are welcome, said Mitchell Caspert, the firm's vice president of marketing and finance.
There is a list of over 300 lots to be auctioned, along with representative pictures, and the names are familiar to those in the baby biz: Bonavita, Graco, Dutailier Gliders, Gund, Cocalo. Cribs, armoires, bedding sets, toys, some groups of outfits, changing tables, walkers, and pretty much anything one would need to get the world ready for baby will be for sale.
This type of auction works a little differently from a typical auction, Caspert said. You don't take that darling crib or adorable stroller with you when you win. "You pay 25 percent down" - in cash, Caspert emphasized - "then we draw up an invoice, and you return in a day or two to pay the rest and take your items with you."
The firm charges a 10 percent buyer's premium, plus sales tax if the bidder doesn't hold a NJ resale certificate.
Caspert said he can't guarantee a steal, particularly with the way bidders have a visceral reaction to an item they love.
"Typically we do have bargains, but it's hard to forecast," he said. "It could be a bad weather day and not a lot of folks come out, or 500 new moms can come and fight over the crib they must have."
It all depends on the bidders. "If there's an ugly crib hidden in the corner, two strangers will fall in love with it and get into a bidding war, to the chagrin to everyone watching it," Caspert said.
So bring cash, get a bidding paddle, and let the baby stuff wars begin.
Please note: buyers are welcome, but Caspert said parents shouldn't bring their children because of the crush of people and nature of auction sales. "It's not an environment for children during an auction," he said.