Detroit Luxury Brand Shinola Opening Standalone Store In Jackson Square

Shinola, the American-made luxury-goods success story out of Detroit, is opening a retail shop in January in the newly renovated Belli Building (722 Montgomery St.) in Jackson Square. It'll be the company's first full store in San Francisco; it has 12 others across the U.S. and U.K.

Nestled in the budding fashion district, the 3,200-square-foot space will stock Shinola's products and house a rotating pop-up shop from American designers. Another standalone store will also open at 261 Hamilton Ave. in Palo Alto in December.

Shinola sells its wares at dozens of other retailers throughout the city and Bay Area, including Bloomingdale's and Nordstrom in the Westfield San Francisco Centre and Neiman Marcus and Saks Fifth Avenue in Union Square. Shinola items are also sold at some smaller shops, such as Huckleberry Bicycles in Mid-Market and The Booksmith in the Haight. This will be the brand's first standalone store in the city, however. Hours will be 11am–7pm Monday-Saturday and 11am–6pm Sunday.

"Shinola" is a play on the rough-hewn, old-timey saying, "You don't know shit from Shinola." But don't let that fool you: The company's sleek luxury craftsman products, ranging from watches and leather satchels to bicycles, pet products and journals, have been featured in umpteen glossy magazines.

Shinola in Portland's Pearl District. (Photo: Shinola/Facebook)

These two new stores join a long list of upscale locations where Shinola is sold. According to the Washington Post, the company's Detroit roots have actually become an asset: "Shinola, in an amazing piece of marketing legerdemain, promotes this hardscrabble, poverty-pocked city as a luxury brand, selling its $475 to $1,500 watches in some very non-Detroit-like places: New York’s Tribeca, London’s Soho, suburban Saks Fifth Avenue and Neiman Marcus locations, the Abu Dhabi airport, the cult Parisian store Colette and, as of last Saturday, in a holiday pop-up shop on the gentrified corridor of 14th Street in Northwest Washington. Early next year, a permanent Washington store will open nearby."

We reported in September that a large retailer would be moving into one of the ground-floor spaces of the newly renovated Belli Building, which also includes 12 market-rate apartments. A few weeks ago, we heard that Shinola was moving in and saw that it was advertising for a new retail store manager in San Francisco, but a representative denied a store was slated to open here.

Shinola watch. (Photo: Shinola/Facebook)

Today, we received a press release confirming the locations of the new stores and details about the openings, along with this quote from COO Heather Carr:

When Shinola was conceived in 2011, the hope was that people would be interested in the concept of creating world-class manufacturing jobs in a city like Detroit, known for its manufacturing legacy. In addition to Detroit, we collaborate with factories and makers from many cities. It’s with these collaborations that we create products that are long-lasting and made with passion and purpose. We at Shinola are energized by the entrepreneurial spirit of the Bay Area and are excited to be part of the community.

As we reported back in May, Shinola's future environs have become a new nexus for fashion in the city, with stores like Eden & Eden, Iron & Resin, Isabel Marant and Legion SF (which moved in September from Clay Street in Chinatown) offering upscale clothing and accessories. Tailor shops, such as Alton Lane and Tailors' Keep, are cropping up as well.

Although two boutiques, La Boutique l'Art et la Mode and Urban Sidewalk, recently closed, Victor Tung couture and ready-to-wear has re-opened next to Point Grey Couture on Commercial Street.

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