With the Rodeo Drive Walk of Style Awards only a few short days away, we decided to catch up with Tom Blumenthal, president of the Rodeo Drive Committee, as well as the third generation in his family to own and operate Gearys, the high-end tabletop shop, which has maintained a presence in the posh city for more than 75 years.
At the helm of the merchants’ association and marketing arm for the sophisticated street, Blumenthal has clear and visionary insight on what makes Rodeo Drive so haute. He talked with us about how “the Drive” has managed to maintain such a revered reputation as one of the leading destinations for luxury shopping the world over. “Our stores tend to be much larger and feature more over-the-top design details than other luxury retail plazas,” he shared. Blumenthal explained that even though other luxury streets and shopping plazas are experiencing store closings and street-front windows sitting empty for months, Rodeo Drive is still close to 95 percent occupied.
The elite leader of the street, who is respected by all who know and work with him, shared with Haute Living the importance of selecting Cartier and Prince Grace of Monoco as this year’s Walk of Style Award winners. “It was an appropriate time to honor Cartier’s longstanding commitment to quality craftsmanship and their ongoing contributions to Rodeo Drive because 2009 marks their 100-year anniversary in America. And it is fitting to tie the famous jeweler with Princess Grace because she adored Cartier and was often photographed in their exquisite pieces.”