NEW YORK — After a well-received turn in the Bryant Park tents during the recent spring collections, Rosa Cha president Amir Slama debuted his junior swim line, Sais (pronounced Say-Z), to U.S. buyers on Tuesday. Slated to hit U.S. stores early next summer, the line is designed by Slama’s wife, Riva, under his direction, and has already been retailing in their native Brazil for five years. Wholesale prices will range from $23 for a basic bikini to $40 for an appliquéd version.

Based in São Paulo, the designer-priced Rosa Cha line is best known for its daring cuts and inventive prints, elements which will be carried over into Sais. “It has a similar spirit,” said Amir Slama. “But is more basic in design and offers a heavier focus on beachwear, and youthful detailing.” A solid purple bandeau without underwire, for example, is paired with heart-print pants with a plastic A-ring closure, and tiny charms dangle from the hip of turquoise side-tie bottoms, while appliqués adorn a two-tone triangle top. “The reality is I have so many ideas, materials and colors in my mind,” said Slama. “I couldn’t possibly use it all in one collection.”

Interest from the American market, where Rosa Cha is in approximately 60 stores, has been positive. “It complements the main line certainly, but a secondary collection can be placed in more doors without the concern of exclusivity that we face with Rosa Cha,” said International Sales Director Jutta Kurz. Tom O’Hara, owner of Gone Bananas Beachwear in San Diego, who bought Sais as part of his summer mix, sees another draw, aside from the lower price point. “The demand for thongs over the past few years has steadily declined, but the skimpier styles are hot. Who better to do that than the Brazilians?”

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