Browsing Tag

Bluemercury

Shop news: openings, a closing, renovation & new construction

Nicki's Central West End Guide Art & Architecture Shop News  Tenderloin Room Kendra Scott Ian Froeb Bob Brazell Bluemercury AG Jeans AC Hotel by Marriott

It’s wonderful to see lights on and action once again at the prominent corner of Euclid and Maryland now that Bluemercury, a high-end luxury beauty brand retailer, has opened.

The national chain, founded by D.C.-based Carla and Barry Beck in 1999 (the first store was located in Georgetown), was sold to Macy’s, Inc. in 2015. The Becks remain onboard as CEO and COO.

Learn more about what brands are available and which spa services are offered at Bluemercury, 2 Maryland Plaza, open Mon. – Sat. 10 to 7, Sun. 11 to 6.

Next door you may have noticed a For Lease sign on a space situated between Bluemercury and Busey Bank. Rumor has it that something is in the works. When the cat is officially out of the bag, I’ll let you know.

Nicki's Central West End Guide Art & Architecture Shop News  Tenderloin Room Kendra Scott Ian Froeb Bob Brazell Bluemercury AG Jeans AC Hotel by Marriott

And down the block, Kendra Scott, a boutique specializing in jewelry, beauty, and home decor items, will open its second St. Louis location soon in the  former Bissinger space at 32 Maryland Plaza. Kendra Scott also has a shop at Plaza Frontenac.

The Austin-based company was started in 2002 when Kendra Scott designed her 1st jewelry collection at home. The new shop will feature the Kendra Scott Color Bar, an interactive experience that allows customers to create custom jewelry in minutes and leave with it in-hand. The store will open with the goal of engaging philanthropically in the St. Louis community. The website states that the brand donates $5 million to charitable causes annually.

Nicki's Central West End Guide Art & Architecture Shop News  Tenderloin Room Kendra Scott Ian Froeb Bob Brazell Bluemercury AG Jeans AC Hotel by Marriott

photo courtesy of Kendra Scott

Regional Marketing and Philanthropic Manager Anna Keenan emailed that they are very excited about the new store, the 106th retail location across the country. The 2000 s.f. space will “be absolutely stunning. It will look nothing like the Plaza Frontenac store, and we can’t wait to bring the new concept store to the St. Louis market.”

Look for the grand opening on November 22, when 20% of  sales will go to St. Louis Children’s Hospital. On the 23rd there will be a special gift with purchase. More events and surprises are planned for the week following Thanksgiving.Nicki's Central West End Guide Art & Architecture Shop News  Tenderloin Room Kendra Scott Ian Froeb Bob Brazell Bluemercury AG Jeans AC Hotel by Marriott

If you’ve heard how well AG Jeans fit but haven’t yet tried them on, you have until November 17 to check them out. AG Jeans has announced that it is closing its Maryland Plaza location.

According to an employee I spoke with, the decision on the part of the corporate office has nothing to do with sales at this location, which have been strong since the store opened. Instead, the business owner wants to concentrate on larger stores in Los Angeles and New York. St. Louis isn’t in the new plan.

On a more positive note, Sam Koplar emailed that they hope to be announcing a new restaurant for the former ‘Scape space by year end.

Nicki's Central West End Guide Art & Architecture Shop News  Tenderloin Room Kendra Scott Ian Froeb Bob Brazell Bluemercury AG Jeans AC Hotel by Marriott

The storied Tenderloin Room at The Chase Park Plaza Royal Sonesta Hotel closed for renovations starting today, November 4, and will reopen under new ownership (Bob Brazell of Byrd & Barrell and Tamm Avenue Bar) in early December. Read more in Ian Froeb’s article in St. Louis Post-Dispatch here.

Nicki's Central West End Guide Art & Architecture Shop News  Tenderloin Room Kendra Scott Ian Froeb Bob Brazell Bluemercury AG Jeans AC Hotel by Marriott

And finally, demolition is nearly complete on the former KPLR studio building (on York Avenue between Lindell and Maryland) to make way for an AC Hotel by Marriott. Construction on the $40 million, 162-room structure will begin in January. Koplar Properties and HomeBase Partners are developers of the project.

Interestingly, this new hotel is not viewed as competition by management of The Chase Park Plaza Royal Sonesta Hotel. When plans were first presented, a Sonesta representative said they are delighted to have more hotel rooms next-door, which will enable them to attract larger conventions.

Andy Holloran, president of HomeBase Partners, said that “The Central West End is one of America’s great neighborhoods and we’re excited to bring a marquee property to a thriving neighborhood we love. Since we are proposing a limited service hotel, the Central West End’s walkable access to bars, restaurants, and shops makes it the ideal location for this type of property.”

What’s new in the commercial district

It’s been a while since I’ve assembled information about shop and restaurant news in the neighborhood. There have been occasional comments on the nextdoor website that the neighborhood seems to have lots of vacancies. Yes some shop windows have been covered in brown paper, but that doesn’t mean nobody’s home. In fact, there is lots going on. Here’s the good news:

Nicki's Central West End Guide Art & Architecture Food and Drink Shop News  The Vino Gallery Salt & Smoke Left Bank Books East and West Cocina Latina Bluemercury

For instance, The Vino Gallery closed last Friday, August 9th, for “a mini-makeover” that included a few repairs, some fresh paint, and a little rebranding. Proprietor Alex Head also mentioned that they will be adding small plates to pair with their stellar selection of wines. The new art on a post at the entry is a sign of what’s to come. There is a soft opening tonight, but the big reveal is in full bloom tomorrow, Saturday the 17th, starting at 1 p.m.

The Vino Gallery, 4901 McPherson.

Nicki's Central West End Guide Art & Architecture Food and Drink Shop News  The Vino Gallery Salt & Smoke Left Bank Books East and West Cocina Latina Bluemercury

East•West. at 387 N. Euclid closed in July for some renovations and rebranding after the business sold to Roy Brady, a customer of the original owner, Brian Simpson. Simpson opened the upscale men’s clothing and furnishings shop in August 2016.

Brady said that as he and Simpson chatted during his visits to the store to shop, they discovered that each was looking for a change in career. Brady wound up purchasing the business. Simpson remains in the background as an advisor.

Nicki's Central West End Guide Art & Architecture Food and Drink Shop News  The Vino Gallery Salt & Smoke Left Bank Books East and West Cocina Latina Bluemercury

Owning a shop is quite a switch for Brady, right, who moved back to St. Louis from California and was working with his sister Nora at Blueprint Coffee. Brady said that the transition was seamless, thanks to Trevor Kirkland, left, who had worked for the previous owner.

Brady will be adding more brands over the next couple of months but said he envisions East•West. as much more than a clothing store. He is bringing local designers and makers into the merchandise mix and wants the shop to be a welcoming space for the community, hosting events to attract an eclectic group of people.

The event aspect got off to a great start when the shop reopened earlier this month. A former St. Louisan brought his line of clothing called Huey Lewis USA from LA for the celebration. A Huey Lewis USA design is featured on the mannequin above.

Nicki's Central West End Guide Art & Architecture Food and Drink Shop News  The Vino Gallery Salt & Smoke Left Bank Books East and West Cocina Latina Bluemercury

East•West. stocks home goods too, including Boda Clay  pottery created by Brady’s girlfriend, Molly Svoboda. Prices for spoon rests, mugs, bowls and colanders range from $18 to $54.

Branding for the shop, including a new logo and website design, is by CWE-based Visitor Assembly.

East•West. , 387 N. Euclid, Tues.-Sat. 11 to 7, Sun. 12 to 5

Nicki's Central West End Guide Art & Architecture Food and Drink Shop News  The Vino Gallery Salt & Smoke Left Bank Books East and West Cocina Latina Bluemercury

After months of speculation regarding who would succeed Coffee Cartel in the prime corner location at Euclid & Maryland, construction has begun in preparation for a fall opening of bluemercury, a national make-up and skin care chain that has 30 locations around the Midwest and Texas.

There’s been a cry for more retail businesses in the CWE for years, so I was a little surprised when a male neighbor asked, “Do you think this ‘blue’ thing is going to work?”

My response: “Are you kidding? You’ve obviously never had to drive to the Galleria for a lipstick. Make-up in the CWE? I know I’m not alone when I say I can’t wait!”

There are more openings on the horizon. News is expected soon about Barrett Barerra’s (projects+gallery) latest projects on McPherson, where they are re-purposing the former Shelton Davis Gallery at 4724, and Arlene Lilie’s building at 4739, which most recently housed Selkirk until the auction house moved downtown to Washington Avenue last fall. Cocina Latina, a Peruvian restaurant, has opened at 508 N. Euclid. Balaban’s is returning to the CWE and opening on the second floor across from its original location, now Up-Down. Salt & Smoke is opening next to Mission Taco. And Commerce Bank Connect has opened a fully automated facility at 54 S. Euclid, next to Shake Shack.

Good news indeed!

With all the hustle & bustle evident in the neighborhood, it’s refreshing to stumble across a scene like the one that follows. At its essence, it’s the people who live here that make the CWE such an interesting neighborhood. It was early one Sunday morning when I was delighted to find a dressed-up mother and daughter peering in the windows at Left Bank Books.  Simple pleasures are the best.

Nicki's Central West End Guide Art & Architecture Food and Drink Shop News  The Vino Gallery Salt & Smoke Left Bank Books East and West Cocina Latina Bluemercury

Nicki's Central West End Guide Art & Architecture Food and Drink Shop News  The Vino Gallery Salt & Smoke Left Bank Books East and West Cocina Latina Bluemercury

Have a great weekend.