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Bryant Park Hotel, Midtown-NYC

Words/Images Judith Ecochard

Gushing over the fashion sporty wear brand Nautica, is easy: the company sponsors a series of Triathlons from coast to coast (muah-thank-you).

And the menswear we saw during Mercedes Benz New York Fashion Week was terrific and full of winning nautically inspired day and activewear ensembles that American guys would actually want to wear.

A classic

Striped trench---tabs, navy tabs & button holes

Happily, there are ample reasons to savour the Spring 2011 ensembles for gals too---

Anorak style with roll up collar-DWR finish for sailing on water/cruising the streets-love roomy pockets with rivet details

Optional roll-ups

Zipped pocket makes it more modern---

 Even we were surprised at how well and refined, actually---the collection is fabulous.
And the colors (navy, white, red, yellow, a bit of beige)---and navy/whitestripes--crisp summery shades...that never lose their "in"-ness.

Navy piping on a chic white jacket with a very fun print as lining.

The fabrics and finishes---design elements, some from the menswear world--- are what we expect from upscale contemporary designer wear...and were happy to find here.

Tab snap collar

And the triple/flat contrast stitching, the placement of pockets...

Our fav Spring coat jacket---navy tab closures with white --- on a bright yellow coat....urban casual

Contrast linings---often in nautical prints...really set Nautica apart and above most collections similarly priced...we think downright chic.

 Love the blend of menswear and the feminine ---in a ruffled blouse with navy piping.

A great color ---this green trench not too tropical/lime---just right. And the top with stripes two ways...adds interest to a classic look.

Other high end finishes---buttons---

The swimwear and cover-ups were cute---and fit the MO of Nautica perfectly.

Taking their cues straight from boating marinas and ocean faring attire---web canvas belts, sailor pant style double buttons....

ROmpers, shorts, mini skirts...tunics...all stellar.

In Europe, the swimwear is HUGE. And even if one never goes near the water---there's a lot here that would work for landlubbers too.