Bombay Company Incorporated
Housewares treated as art

AT the soon-to-open Royal/T showroom for contemporary Japanese art and design in Culver City, a cafe will be staffed by waitresses in uniforms inspired by manga cartoons. The next time British lighting phenomenon Tom Dixon visits Los Angeles, he will be feted at an artist reception inside a special store-within-a-store at Twentieth dedicated to his work. And at the new Limn on La Brea Avenue, shoppers won't miss the "Private Atelier" sign and red velvet rope guarding access to VIP client rooms upstairs.Cynics might call this stunt retailing, but industry watchers see a method in the madness. As major chains such as Levitz and the Bombay Co. go out of business, and the U.S. Department of...