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R.F. Moeller Jeweler

AMERICA'S COOLEST: A Minnesota institution builds a luxurious new flagship store.

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R.F. Moeller Jeweler, St. Paul, MN

OWNERS: R.F. Moeller Jeweler; ADDRESS: 2065 Ford Parkway St. Paul, MN 55116; PHONE: (651) 698-6321


MARK MOELLER needed more space. To get it, he decided to move from R.F. Moeller Jeweler’s original location, where the firm had operated for more 50 years, to a luxurious new flagship store measuring 11,500 square feet. The new store boasts state-of-the-retail-art features such as a full-service bar and a gym. The only problem? With all the traffic he’s getting, and his plans for bigger, grander events, Moeller is finding that the store is still not big enough!

What are your store is most unique features?

Probably our full-service bar. It’s centrally located and features an espresso machine. There is no beverage that we cannot offer our clients. Whether it’s a latte or a martini, we can get it for them. We have a fabulous Lazare Diamond boutique that features a dedicated showcase for Lazare products. There’s also a full-service kitchen in the lower level of the store. Because we hold many events for clients and charities, we decided to prepare hors d’oeuvres on site. In addition to that, there is a smaller, full-service kitchen on the main level, which we use to warm hors d’oeuvres during events. Staff also use the kitchens for breakfasts, lunches and diners every day. Another nice feature is the complete exercise and workout facility we have on-site. It’s got satellite television, exercise bicycles, treadmill, a Universal-Nautilus system and an elliptical cross-trainer.

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What’s it like inside?

It’s very open and inviting. As you approach the building, you notice the large picture windows on each side of the store. As you enter, you see nearly 300 feet of display cases … designed to match the back-lit sofas above. A medium-dark cherry wood motif is seen throughout the store and is accented by stainless steel and glass. It is an upscale contemporary store that makes you feel like you’re in your neighborhood coffee shop.

Who did the design for you?

Anderson-Dale Architects designed all three of our stores. We worked very closely with them, including directing them on colors, design and enhancements.

Were there any specific requirements when it came to converting the building?

The entire space had to be gutted. We had to shut down Cleveland Avenue for half a day in order to build our walk-in vault on-site. The safe weighs several tons, and the engineers determined that the floors couldn’t support the load, so we had to cut a hole in the roof and use a crane to bring in each wall and the door to the safe.

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How much did it cost to adapt the building?

Nearly $2 million. And yes, it was worth it.

Do you think all the special features in the store helps sales?

We had our best year ever last year, and this year we are up 20 percent over last year. Over the past three months, we are up 50 percent over last year! Yes, the store helps, but if we didn’t have the best-educated staff in the country, an in-house design and repair studio featuring three platinum smiths and goldsmiths, an in-house watchmaker with over 35 years of experience, and who is a Rolex-trained technician, and the fact that we represent jewelry that is among the finest in the world — including Lazare Diamonds, Mikimoto Pearls and Rolex timepieces, we would be just the proverbial “house of cards”.

What do you like most about the store? And least

I like that the store represents who we are, what we’re about, and where we are going. The store is very open and inviting. It’s the perfect venue for us to show both existing clients and potential clients the difference between us and other jewelers. We build relationships. We don’t look for the one-time sale. The only problem with the store is… it’s still not big enough! We can accommodate 300 to 400 people, but we would like to be able to accommodate 1,000.

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