“Albeerta” clothing; Canadian retailer Simons opens its doors in Calgary.
Simons is saying bonjour to Calgary! On March 16 Simons, a 176-year-old, fifth-generation fashion retailer from Quebec City, will open its doors in the Lancaster Building, a 98-year old brownstone building in downtown Calgary. Simons has been a staple of the Quebec shopping scene for decades, but since 2012 it has expanded to five stores beyond the province making for a total of 14 Canadian stores. At the helm of the expansion — and of Simons' unique mix of boutique fashions, home accessories, and art-filled stores — are brothers Peter (pictured) and Richard Simons.
“Our goal has never been to be a big company,” says Peter Simons. “But we had opportunities to work with different creative people around the world, and previously lacked the size to take these on. Expanding gave us more clout to be able to take on more creative projects — our own perfume line, original graphic designs for stores and product, social merchandise with charities, working with eco-suppliers, and bringing some European products exclusively to Canada.”
The Calgary store will have the same great selection of clothing, accessories, and housewares for men, women, and children — including Simons own in-house lines such as Twik and Maison. “We’re focused on the creative aspect of beauty and individual expression,” says Simons. “Our customers don’t need a brand or label to justify their purchase. They’re open to discovering the individual, story-driven artisanal brands we carry. Our customer tends to mix it up a lot and has no trouble recognizing the creativity and authenticity of a lot of smaller brands.” One thing that will be different, as it is in every store, is the layout. The five-level store is housed in a historic sandstone building and custom artwork by Calgary artists Maya Gohill and Megan Jentsch, as well as noted Canadian artist Chris Cran, will adorn the walls. “We’re always trying to create unique spaces, and I think people enjoy that,” Simons says. “I’m hoping people will explore and discover the store.” Simons, The Core, 324 - 8 Ave SW, simons.ca