Christmas windows are a traditional part of New York City during the holidays. Every year the famous department stores decorate their storefront windows with holiday themes and people come from far and wide to stand on the sidewalk and gaze at the dreamy scenes.
For department store locations, view the Christmas Windows Map at the bottom of the page.
Theme: Share the Joy
Once again, the windows at Lord & Taylor do not disappoint. This year, there is an interesting personal touch. Lord & Taylor asked people to share their favorite holiday stories. From the many responses, twelve stories were chosen to illustrate through the intricate scenes featured in the windows.
Store Location: Fifth Avenue and 39th Street
Visiting Tip: Combine your visit to the Lord & Taylor windows with a trip to the nearby Bryant Park Ice Skating Rink and Holiday Shops (Sixth Avenue and 40th Street).
Theme: "Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus."
The Macy's windows along Broadway illustrate the famous line from a New York newspaper editorial written in 1897 in response to a letter from 8-year-old Virginia O'Hanlon. Each window tells a part of the story, which is narrated over the speakers.
As always, the windows along 34th Street side of Macy's display the classic "Miracle on 34th Street" theme.
Store Location: Broadway and 34th Street
Theme: The Snowflake and the Bubble
The theme is a bit peculiar for Christmas. One might think the windows seem more set on drawing attention to the clothing than the holidays. Even so, the scenes are interesting. Perhaps the best part is the projection of bubbles and snowflakes onto the entire front of the Saks building.
Visiting Tip: Saks is located across Fifth Avenue from Rockefeller Center, making it an easy stop while enjoying the Christmas tree and the rest of the decorations in Rockefeller Center. Beware that it also attracts large crowds due to this location.
Store Location: Fifth Avenue and 49th Street (across from the Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree)
Theme: Happy Merry Peace Love
These windows are simply full of screens showing scenes of a Christmas tree with falling snow. The screens change back and forth between displaying words and the snowy scenes. It's soothing to watch but much less interesting than the others.
Store Location: Lexington Avenue and 59th Street
Theme: Wish You Were Here
The Bergdorf Goodman windows are elaborate, complicated, and extraordinarily busy. It may take you several minutes to visually process one window scene. One passerby was overheard saying, "I like them but they're just too much".
Store Location: Fifth Avenue and 57th Street
Theme: Have a Foodie Holiday
Barney's teamed up with the Food Network and illycafe to create a one-of-a-kind holiday display. These funny window scenes feature well-known chefs like Bobby Flay, Emeril, and Martha Stewart in rather humorous positions.
Store Location: 660 Madison Avenue and 61st Street
|Barney's - Madison Avenue and 61st Street||Bergdorf Goodman - Fifth Avenue and 57th Street||Bloomingdale's - Lexington Avenue and 59th Street||Saks Fifth Avenue - Fifth Avenue and 49th Street||Lord & Taylor - Fifth Avenue and 39th Street||Macy's - Broadway and 34th Street|
Remember your New York vacation and share it with others. Scenes of New York City make perfect
Cards feature original New York City photography.
Back to Christmas Windows 2011