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Welcome to the Racked Awards, our annual celebration of the best in local shopping and stye.Photos: Ashley Brozic
To understand why a tiny, year-old shop like Respice could win the category for best concept store in Miami, one must first understand what a concept store is. To put it simply, a concept store is the type of brick and mortar that explores a new idea for consumers, that handpicks the sort of items that, together, create a lifestyle covetable by anyone who can double tap an iPhone- precisely what this curious South Miami shop does.
In a city where the topic of sameness has been a ringing theme in independent retail stores until now, Respice could stand out solely for the breadth of specialized brands and items it carries— Clare Vivier clutches, Etnia Barcelona eyewear, recent issues of Monacle Magazine and, soon, watches by Shinola—. Every detail inside has been accounted for, from the long row of vintage stadium seats to the cruiser parked by the window. One year in and exclusive collaborations are already starting to roll in. To start, the boutique is the only one in Miami to carry Apolis' Bangladesh Project market bags with Miami stamped boldly across the front.
When we spoke to owners Alejandro Orestano and Gisela Balassa, they explained to us that they didn't sell things, they sold stories. In a sense, Respice is making its own story as the kind of carefully curated store that trail blazes a particular zip code, causing others to take note and maybe think twice about the way retail could be.
· How Respice is Putting Quality Back into South Miami [Racked Miami]
· Racked Awards [Racked Miami]