By  on February 20, 2008

After updating boutiques in Europe and Asia, Stuart Weitzman brought his new store concept to the U.S. Monday when he unveiled his revamped Beverly Hills store.

Designed by Italian architect Fabio Novembre, the more than 2,000-square-foot North Rodeo Drive flagship reopened after three months of renovations. It features a new color palette of white and icy blue, and a ribbon shelving concept that evokes a mazelike feel throughout the store. Weitzman said he was inspired to update his stores in October 2006 after deciding to open locations in Rome and Milan.

"The catalyst for us was our decision to go to Italy and offer our product and compete in the fashion capital of footwear," Weitzman said. "We needed something quite special and unique. We couldn't open a store without a very special and beautiful, modern design. So it triggered the search for a great idea. And it will be just as important in the U.S., where we do most of our business and where we are based."

The 22-year-old brand is known for its classic, pointed heels and soft leather handbags.

Weitzman's new concept already has been implemented in several of his stores abroad, including those in Milan, Rome, Beijing, Saint-Tropez, France, and Capri, Italy. Other units of the same design launching this year include locations in Madrid and Macau.

This spring, Weitzman will close his New York store on Madison Avenue for about three months to implement a version of Novembre's design.

"The great thing about Fabio is that he really is not a retail store architect or designer," Weitzman said. "He's exactly what I was looking for, not someone with preconceived conditions or thoughts on how a shoe store should look."

Weitzman will host an event at the Beverly Hills store Friday to celebrate the reopening. On display will be a pair of one-of-a-kind shoes made with Kwiat diamonds that an unnamed actress will wear to the Academy Awards on Sunday.

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