Jimmy Choo plans to mark its 20th anniversary with a strong focus on the U.S. The luxury goods firm will begin its birthday celebrations with a limited-edition “Memento” collection, as well as a sizable investment in U.S. brick-and-mortar openings.
“We are still a very young company, but 20 years is a moment where you are starting to be more established and looking back at what you should do,” chief executive officer Pierre Denis said of the occasion.
“The U.S. market is at the heart of the 20th anniversary because it’s very much a place where the brand was largely developed,” he added, owing to the brand’s success in U.S.-based endorsements including widespread success on the red carpet, and multiple plot features in “Sex in the City.” “It’s very much a U.S. year at Jimmy Choo,” he said.
A key initiative for 2016 will be reinvestment in its New York retail operations. The brand will move its current Upper East Side store at 716 Madison Avenue one block south to 699 Madison Avenue, beside Hermès. The 2,200-square-foot unit will stock women’s and men’s styles, and will open in April.
Around the same time, a 1,300-square-foot store at 111 Greene Street in SoHo will also open.
“I think the two are going to complement each other quite nicely,” Denis said. The Madison flagship, which Denis feels will serve as one of the brand’s “key flagships worldwide,” will appear “very institutional, very Madison, very classical in its idea of Jimmy Choo.”
The SoHo store, by contrast, will be “a bit more raw,” he said. “We are keeping the raw features of the store, so you will have exposed pipes, etc. So far the existing space is coming across stronger than the concept, I like that and think it will be something more modern.”
Addressing both spaces, Denis said: “We have taken locations that are suitable for Jimmy Choo, down to the size we need. We are not building castles…I think luxury clients don’t want to go into a huge palace anymore to shop; they want something more intimate. What counts more is the atmosphere.”
Additional U.S. openings are planned in April for San Francisco, Chicago and King of Prussia, Pa.
Also to mark its 20th anniversary, Jimmy Choo will release a collection inspired by its greatest red carpet hits. Called “Memento,” the collection includes 20 styles that can be purchased individually or by special order as a set packaged in a vanity shoe trunk. The price of the trunk has yet to be determined.
Creative director Sandra Choi said she sees the 20th anniversary as a time to celebrate Jimmy Choo’s “positive feeling.”
“It’s quite a limitless brand, and quite positive and I love that it makes people feel that way.”
This year she will hit the road, particularly in the U.S., as a public ambassador for that attitude.
Said Denis: “Sandra is going to take time to regularly come to the U.S. We are going to increase her public presence. It will be interesting for her to be close to the market.”