Cortelyou's Wizarding Department Store is the largest store in Stuyvesant's Alley in lower Manhattan. Abram Cortelyou opened a small dry goods store in the Alley about 1845. He gradually expanded his offerings, moving to larger quarters on several occasions. Jacobus Cortelyou, the founder's son, built the current 7-story store in 1905 and coined the slogan, "an Emporium for All Your Magical Needs." Although Stuyvesant Alley still boasts smaller stores focused on potion ingredients, animals, clothing, wands, books and brooms, Cortelyou's offers all of these products and more under one roof. The magnificent cast-iron storefront is adorned with figures of famous witches and wizards, as well as magical creatures including owls and dragons.
Cortelyou's is well known for its magical Christmas window displays. The store employs dwarves (dressed as Santa and his elves) to sing Christmas carols during November and December each year. The dwarves' surly renditions of songs such as "I'm Dreaming of a Charmed Christmas" are a holiday tradition of the New York magical community. Cortelyou's restaurant, which takes up most of the fifth floor, is also famous for its high afternoon tea; generations of Gotham witches have made the restaurant their gathering place for elegant dining and conversation.
Coretleyou's clerks use a spell to shrink all purchases so that they fit in one bag; customers are given a spell that reverses the shrinking charm when they get home.