The San Francisco Business Times spills the beans on our latest plan for world domination: consolidating and expanding (doubling, actually) our current stores and club to 550 Montgomery, aka the original Bank of Italy building.
At the corner of Clay & Montgomery in the heart of the Financial District, 550 Montgomery is a national historic landmark building constructed in 1908 just after the earthquake. To walk through the ground floor space –our future retail space– is to be transported to another time, and we have every intention of showcasing the history of the building. In fact, some of that has already begun with the acquisitions of turn-of-the-century pieces for our barber chair, fitting room mirror, barber pole, cash register, and more.
The full article requires a subscription, so here are some of the highlights:
- The building was home to the original Bank of Italy, founded by A.P. Giannini, which later became Bank of America. The ground floor probably has more Italian Carrara marble than the city of Carrara, which came from the same quarry that Michelangelo used. The ceiling, which is a work of art in itself, is 25′ above you, the original solid brass teller windows have details that you have to see up close, and the windows into the store are huge. Due to the historic nature of the space, we are not allowed to alter most of that, but when you see it, you’ll realize we’d be crazy to change a thing. For the most part, we’re just moving in.
- The main store will live on the Ground Floor space with the custom (Bespoke) shop on the Lower Level in the bank’s original vault. The old safe deposit box room will become our new fitting room. Each customers’ measurements and swatches will be stored in their own safe deposit box!
- Wingtip, our private club for our loyal customers, will relocate to the two penthouse floors (10 & 11), comprising 12,000 sq ft, and quadrupling its current footprint.
- The space has some incredible views, especially of the Transamerica Pyramid and Coit Tower, and if all goes well, a roof deck will be in our future for Wingtip.
- Save the Date for our Grand Opening Party on Thursday, September 20th for an all-day sales event. Wingtip will open a few months later as its build-out is much more involved.
This would not be possible without the continued support from customers like you. It’s easy for employees to tell other employees not to take business issues “personally,” but when it’s your business, everything is personal: the good and the bad. And I feel very blessed to have great customers and great employees.
Enjoy some photos of the new retail space. There will be photos of the future club space next week, and plenty of additional blog posts about progress on both spaces…
Founder & President