By and  on December 13, 2010

Stephen Webster has opened his first stand-alone U.S. store in a Beverly Hills space that is a fusion of art and commerce.

The 3,100-square-foot store covers two floors and is located in the former Garrard shop at Two Rodeo. The ground floor showcases the jewelry collections, and Webster transformed the top floor into an entertainment-space-cum-art-gallery with exhibitions planned.

“The location is phenomenal — it overlooks the Beverly Wilshire Hotel — but the building we started with was just so boring,” Webster said. “So we ripped the walls down, took the ceilings out and installed a sweeping, sculptural staircase. We put in a wet bar upstairs for the No Regrets Lounge, which Pernod Ricard will be sponsoring.”

Prices range from $200 to $40,000, and there are one-of-a-kind and couture pieces from $40,000 to $125,000.

Kate Beckinsale, Rosanna Arquette, Jordan Bratman and Lady Victoria Hervey were among the guests at the opening party on Dec. 6.

The interior was designed by Los Angeles-based Alexis Readinger, owner of Preen design firm. On the first level, Readinger incorporated elements such as skull-engraved concrete floors, black crocodile jewelry cases, serpentine stairs and a metal sculpture resembling a tree trunk with winding branches and illuminated from below by multicolored changing lights. Upstairs, the No Regrets Lounge boasts a red neon sign and a red flecked metal and crystal bar, as well as a Swarovski-crystal shark chandelier created by Denham-Smith.

The pipes and ceiling ducts are exposed, and the upstairs space has room for a dining table to seat 24. Webster plans to hang his own art — including a neon heart by his pal Tracey Emin and works by D*Face. The first exhibition will feature photographer Brian Duffy.

“It’ll be a constant moving feast upstairs,” said Webster, who is also the creative director of Garrard. Ron Burkle’s Yucaipa Cos. LLC owns Garrard and has a stake in Webster’s company.

Downstairs, he has earmarked a big picture window for stylists of his choice to embellish. “It doesn’t have to be editorial, and they can use any clothing — and mine and my favorite jewelry,” Webster said. The first stylist to design the window will be Marjan Malakpour followed by “Black Swan” costume designer Amy Westcott (the display will be themed to the film and timed for Oscar season), then Trish Somerville.

Webster has 150 outlets in the U.S. and sells through stores such as Neiman Marcus, Saks Fifth Avenue and Tivol in Kansas City. Webster expects the Rodeo Drive boutique to generate $5 million in annual sales after three years in operation.

He has no plans to open more U.S. locations in 2011, but if all goes according to plan, Webster will launch a store in Manhattan in 2012. Over the past year, he has opened stand-alone units in Vienna, London, and Marbella, Spain. The London and Beverly Hills stores are wholly owned, while the smaller units are owned with local partners.

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