A peek inside Saks Waikiki
During a media tour Aug. 22, Saks Fifth Avenue Waikiki's local born and raised vice president and general manager Shelley Tadaki Cramer had the audience of writers, editors and photographers at hello.
That is, until the group reached the third floor, when instead of zigging to the left at the top of the escalators, there was a mad zag to the right, toward the women's shoe department. It took a while to restore order and corral the shoe fans into rejoining the group in the men's department.
There's good reason for their excitement. It's been three years since we first learned that Saks Fifth Avenue would open its first full-service, luxury retail store in Hawaii at the redeveloped International Market Place. Construction on the new complex began in March 2014, so it's been a long wait.
The shoe department was to be our last stop in a tour that took us from beauty and handbags on the first floor; to women's contemporary, designer and intimate apparel on the second floor; to our final destination at the shoe department, with a look at the Fifth Avenue Club and International Lounge, with space for personal shopping experiences and a treatment room for tailored facials.
I was in the store Aug. 15 while boxes were still being opened, and mannequins stood naked. What a difference a week makes now that everything is in its place. The store will open to the public following a blessing at 9:15 a.m. Aug. 25.
The festive occasion will be marked by Cirque Soleil-style performers on the first floor coinciding with Saks’ Cirque de Beauté, a circus of beauty offerings and exclusive product previews, including the introduction of Alexander McQueen's McQueen Parfum and McQueen Eau de Parfum, available exclusively at Saks Fifth Avenue Hawaii ahead of their official launch Sept. 1.
Emma Hepburn Ferrer, granddaughter of fashion icon Audrey Hepburn, will make a special appearance on behalf of DECORTÉ, a Japanese luxury beauty brand that will be exclusively available at Saks Fifth Avenue. Also exclusive to the store in Hawaii is the beauty brand by Terry, founded by Terry De Gunzberg, noted for introducing the click pen to beauty by creating the popular highlighter Touché Eclat for YSL.
As the anchor tenant of the newly reimagined International Market Place, Saks Fifth Avenue will offer the Hawaiian community its iconic and curated designer assortment, best in class service, and unparalleled experiential offerings, including its Fifth Avenue Club.
Here's a peek at what you'll find on opening day:
Nadine Kam is Style Editor and staff restaurant critic at the Honolulu Star-Advertiser; her food coverage in print in Wednesday's Crave section. Contact her via email at email@example.com and follow her on Twitter, Instagram and Rebel Mouse.