So as you know when I was in the Big Apple the week before last I was treated to a guided tour of Macy’s New York. My guide, John, has worked at Macy’s for 17 years so knows absolutely everything there is to know about this iconic store, and he gave me the fascinating history as well as some insight into all the thought that goes into improving the shopping experience.

The Macy’s chain of stores was founded by Rowland Hussey Macy in 1843 (the red star in the Macy’s logo was the same as the one he had tattooed on his hand when he worked on a ship). The flagship store at Herald Square at 34th Street and Broadway – the one I was visiting – opened in 1902, and the celebrated movie Miracle on 34th Street takes place after the famous Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade. In addition to the Thanksgiving Parade in November they also have an annual flower show every March when the store is filled with floral displays (John showed me photos on his phone and it looks stunning), and 4th of July fireworks, and Macy’s New York is officially the 2nd most visited attraction in the Big Apple, after the Empire State Building.

After a multi-million dollar makeover to enhance the customer experience it’s looking fabulous (I particularly loved the cosmetics hall – this is the Chanel concession, which is just down the stairs from the visitor’s centre). Until 2009 Macy’s was actually the biggest department store in the world, and it’s still very big, so I’d probably allow at least a few hours to explore it properly, and make the most of the 10% discount voucher you get from the visitor’s centre if you’re an international shopper.

Anyway John gave me some lovely gifts – a Macy’s New York tote bag, umbrella and gorgeous red notebook – and I’ve decided to share the love by giving you the chance to win them in my Macy’s New York prize draw. To enter, simply leave your answer to the question below by the closing date, 11.59pm on February 8 2015. The usual The Mum Blog competition rules apply and the winner will be chosen at random using a random number generator.

Q: Who founded Macy’s New York?

Good luck!

Thank you to everyone who entered. This competition is now closed and the winner will be announced later this week.

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