London - Los Angeles based eyewear label Oliver Peoples is set to open its debut European stand alone boutique in heart of London. News that the luxury eyewear brand aims to open its first store in Europe in London’s Sloane Street, comes in spite of fears a Brexit would ward off foreign retailers from setting up shop in the UK.
The store, located at 151 Sloane Street and measures approximately 650 square feet, will offer Oliver Peoples optical frames and sunglasses, and features an opticians as well as an eye doctor on site, reports Women’s Wear Daily. In addition to featuring the brands seasons collections for men and women, the stand alone store will also offer some of its collaborative collections, such as Oliver Peoples x Byredo and Oliver Peoples The Row, as well as a selection of limited custom frames and vintage styles.
Oliver Peoples to open debut store in London
The opening of Oliver Peoples first stand alone store in the UK comes 30 years after the brand first began offering its iconic frames in the country, via a network of retailers and high-end opticians, including Dover Street Market and Browns. The store opening also comes 30 years after the opening of its first store on Sunset Boulevard, and rapidly shot to fame with is distinct frames which lacked any discernible logo. The luxury brand has long set its sights on opening its own store in London, according to David Schulte, Oliver Peoples chief executive officer, but was in search of the right store in the right location. “We would have loved to have been here five years ago. I think the real estate in London is one of the toughest cities right now in the world,” said Schulte to WWD.
The store’s interior was inspired by Schulte take on London and it’s history, built by the Los-Angeles based architects Marmot Radziner. Unlike the brands other stores in West Hollywood, San Diego, San Francisco, New York and Tokyo the store in London is darker, featuring original teak and leather furniture, as well as authentic optometry stools. “We wanted to take advantage of the history of London. I had been going for years, and am obviously a huge fan of the club culture that exists in the city, whether it’s Annabel’s or Loulou’s or all that cool stuff that’s going on over there,” added Schulte.
Oliver Peoples London store to strengthen position as the "most exclusive eyewear brand in the world"
“It’s very beautiful and rich. I can’t stand when I’m flying all over the world and I go to different stores and it’s always the same thing. So we really try hard to give people a sort of city-centric experience.” The new store, which will become flagship location for the brand, is projected to become an ‘A plus store,’ thanks to its location. “London is one of the great cities of the world and it will continue to thrive no matter what happens. The London real estate market is very hot right now, whether it’s Sloane Street or Mount Street or parts of the East End,” said Schulte. “So we’re thrilled to finally be able to put a flag in the ground.”
The new flagship store will also help strengthen the brand’s position in the market, as Oliver Peoples aims to become the most exclusive eyewear brand. “We are really trying to position Oliver Peoples as the most exclusive eyewear brand in the world. For us to be positioned as the most exclusive eyewear brand in the world — which is our goal — we need retail, we need that visibility, and we need to give all of our customers an experience at the highest level.”
Headquartered in West Hollywood, California, Oliver Peoples Inc. was co-founded in 1986 by eyewear visionary and designer Larry Leight. The luxury eyewear brand is best known for its high quality frames, which are handcrafted from the finest materials and available in limited numbers. Oliver Peoples currently sells its frames via a network of retailers in more than 60 countries around the world. In addition to owning the brand Oliver Peoples, the company also holds the global rights to market and distribute Paul Smith Spectacles, a collection of eyewear frames launched in 1994, designed by Sir Paul Smith.
Photos: Oliver Peoples store in East Hampton and San Francisco