Frette Inc. will open its 10th signature store in the U.S. at the Americana Manhasset Mall in Manhasset, N.Y., on the day after Thanksgiving.
The 1,200-square-foot luxury linens boutique, which will be near Chanel, Gucci, Van Cleef & Arpels and Wolford, represents the initial phase of a retail rollout in key U.S. markets, said Paul Raffin, chief executive officer of Frette’s North American operations. He projected the Manhasset store would generate sales in “numbers north of $2,000” per square foot.
Prices start at $60 for six soaps in rose and lavender scents; $65 for rose, orange and lavender-scented candles in frosted glass, and a scented lounge candle with a Mediterranean fragrance, $125. Bed linens range from $450 for the Hotel Collection to $2,400 for the Couture Linen Collection. Cotton pajamas are priced at $350, while lounge pieces such as a knitted cashmere and fox shawl-collar robe with silk lining will be listed at $2,500. Chantilly lace-trimmed silk sleep gowns will be $400 to $650.
Designed by architect Janson Goldstein, the unit will exude a modern flavor without compromising Frette’s 150-year heritage. An elaborate glass and metal facade and canopy will frame the entrance and display window. Frette’s iconic pattern — a diamond-shaped double F logo called a “rhomba” — will be featured above the canopy as a signpost for the brand.
Raffin said the mood of the boutique’s interior will be enhanced with raw materials such as Russian-fumed oak contrasted with white marble floors, dramatic lighting, stained ash and glass and nickel mill work, to create a contemporary and vintage ambience. There will be a custom-pattern “luxury wall” to provide a hands-on experience for shoppers featuring an array of specialty items such as cashmere throws and blankets, silk and crushed velvet throws, taffeta duvets, and boudoir and home accessories rendered in Russian sable, mink and chinchilla.
The company, which was acquired in 2006 by San Francisco-based JH Partners, a private equity firm specializing in brand development and marketing, began initiating expansion plans when Raffin was named ceo in January. The nine other Frette boutiques, outlets and in-store shops in the U.S. are in Chicago, Aspen, Colo.; Manhattan, an in-store shop at ABC Carpet & Home in Manhattan; Woodbury Commons in Central Valley, N.Y., and four shops in California: Beverly Hills, San Francisco, Palo Alto and South Coast Plaza in Costa Mesa.
Raffin said plans to expand “are proceeding on a very strategic, selective basis with initial focus on entry into new markets where there is currently no Frette representation. We know there are high concentrations of Frette customers in the Southeast and Southwest, given the e-commerce business generated by all of these markets. We are targeting Bal Harbour [Fla.], Atlanta, Dallas and Houston as major opportunities in the Sunbelt region.
“We will announce shortly a major project in Boston that represents a future vision of Frette,” he said. “The next five to seven years will see a tiered rollout of flagships on street locations, mall-based store formats, smaller studio stores in resort locales and high-profile markets such as Greenwich [Conn.], Santa Barbara [Calif.], and East Hampton [N.Y.]. We also envision a 30- to 50-store retail division in the U.S., as well as multiple wholesale points of distribution with key partners such as Bloomingdale’s and ABC.”