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These 10 Stores Were America’s Coolest Stores Honorable Mentions for 2023

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BIG COOL

These 10 Stores Were America’s Coolest Stores Honorable Mentions for 2023

Kesslers
Grand Rapids, MI

An airy storefront with three walls of windows attracted the Kesslers Diamonds’ team to the space for their newest, and eighth, store, which now has a lounge, bar and booth seating. Founder Richard Kessler taught his team to treat the business as if it were their own, advice they took to heart, because when Kessler retired in 2019, the business became 100% employee-owned.

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These 10 Stores Were America’s Coolest Stores Honorable Mentions for 2023These 10 Stores Were America’s Coolest Stores Honorable Mentions for 2023
These 10 Stores Were America’s Coolest Stores Honorable Mentions for 2023These 10 Stores Were America’s Coolest Stores Honorable Mentions for 2023

These 10 Stores Were America’s Coolest Stores Honorable Mentions for 2023

Shaftel Diamonds
Houston, TX

Keith Shaftel launched his business supplying loose
diamonds to wholesalers and local jewelers, later adding a retail showroom. With son, Danny, and daughter, Gaby on board, the family recently reinvented their store. Designer Jesse Balaity’s concept was based on Houston being a big city that doesn’t take itself too seriously, prioritizing fun and engaging over formal and controlled.

These 10 Stores Were America’s Coolest Stores Honorable Mentions for 2023

L. Priori Jewelry
Washington, D.C.

GIA graduate gemologist Lauren Priori left Philadelphia’s Jeweler’s Row in 2016 to start the kind of jewelry company she’d always wanted to work for. With an appointment-only business focused on custom engagement rings, the company has grown tenfold over six years. In 2021, Priori opened her third location in Georgetown.

These 10 Stores Were America’s Coolest Stores Honorable Mentions for 2023

Springer’s Jewelers
Portsmouth, NH

Owners Lily Beaulieu Mullen, who designed Springer’s newest store, and her sister, Zoe Beaulieu, represent the millennial fourth generation of family-owned Springers Jewelers, founded in 1870. Their Portsmouth store is at the gateway of the historic downtown on the ground floor of 100 Market, a high-end building that’s home to New England’s premier private club.

These 10 Stores Were America’s Coolest Stores Honorable Mentions for 2023

Occasions Fine Jewelry
Midland, TX

In 2021, collaborating with interior designer Leslie McGwire, second-generation owner Michael Fleck remodeled his store with a motif and palette he describes as desert luxury. “We wanted Occasions to be a luxurious celebration of everything that’s best about Midland, Texas, and its prairie landscape,” Fleck says.


SMALL COOL

These 10 Stores Were America’s Coolest Stores Honorable Mentions for 2023

William Travis Jewelry
Chapel Hill, NC

Wiliam Travis Kukovich, a fifth-generation metalsmith, designed his shop with Feng Shui principles in mind to harmonize the guest experience. Everything moves in a circular pattern, avoiding any entrapment of energy. As for marketing, video is essential, he says, because it captures the natural movement of the wearer and the play of light and form as the jewelry is worn.

These 10 Stores Were America’s Coolest Stores Honorable Mentions for 2023

Powell Jewelry
Wichita, KS

Dan and Lynn Hernandez own Powell Jewelry, which has grown over 90 years from a small store to a multiple brand retailer. Their newest store, designed by Leslie McGwire & Associates, represents a cutting edge, elegant, and classy design that stands out in Wichita with its Italian marble floors and museum cases accented in black, white and brushed gold.

These 10 Stores Were America’s Coolest Stores Honorable Mentions for 2023

John Thomas Jewelers
Albuquerque, NM

John Thomas Jewelers, owned by John Thomas Mead, occupies 1,500 square feet on the third floor of an office building with almost all alloy samples in bridal. The entire store is client facing with 5-foot wide pullout double level drawers that display more than 2,000 rings. With 3D software and 3D wax printers, a magnetic try-on station, and all of the accessible jewelry, it truly is a hands-on experience.

These 10 Stores Were America’s Coolest Stores Honorable Mentions for 2023

Dutille’s Jewelry Design Studio
Lebanon, NH

Second-generation jeweler Jude Dutille and son Beau began a major renovation of their full-service store with the help of Retailworks in late 2019. They relocated their workshop from the basement to the main floor, where customers can now observe the repair, design, and creation of jewelry on-site.

These 10 Stores Were America’s Coolest Stores Honorable Mentions for 2023

Water Street Jewelers
Guilford, CT

At Daniela Balzano’s store, customers have meaningful jewelry transformed into wearable art. Balzano has a commitment to ethical sourcing, independent designers, and sustainable packaging. The store, awash in natural light, is designed with a calming palette of turquoise, white and cream. Plants, natural wood and hand-built cases contribute to an artisanal feel.

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When the Kids Have Their Own Careers, Wilkerson Can Help You to Retire

Alex and Gladys Rysman are the third generation to run Romm Jewelers in Brockton, Mass. And after many decades of service to the industry and their community, it was time to close the store and take advantage of some downtime. With three grown children who each had their own careers outside of the industry, they decided to call Wilkerson. Then, the Rysmans did what every jeweler should do: They called other retailers and asked about their own Wilkerson experience. “They all told us what a great experience it was and that’s what made us go with Wilkerson.” says Gladys Rysman. The results? Alex Rysman says he was impressed. “We exceeded whatever I expected to do by a large margin.”

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