The new concept will be stocked with shoes, bags and other accessories in a buildout one of its cofounders dubbed “Fantasia meets a very, very affluent apartment.”

A former real estate broker and fashion industry executive have teamed on a luxury boutique concept timed for a June opening.

The Kingdom, once open, will be about 1,400 square feet of what cofounder Jason Salstein called “Fantasia meets a very, very affluent apartment.”

That would be in keeping with the concept’s name, aimed at evoking a luxury fantasy world in a space designed by Ballentine Architects Studio. The store will be infused with marble, crystal chandeliers, herringbone oak floors, Fornasetti tile, Fortuny Le Tigre pillows, shagreen walls and a carved French-inspired fireplace mantle among other touches with a luxe, residential hand.

“The Kingdom really represents a different kind of world,” Salstein said. “The world that I’m creating is a mix of luxury fantasy and [whimsy], but at the same time, we want to resonate with high-end customers.”

The boutique itself will carry what Salstein said would be a mix of fashion-forward, directional pieces, mostly for women with some unisex items. Brands include Gucci, Manolo Blahnik, Balmain, Saint Laurent, Alexander McQueen, Salvatore Ferragamo and Proenza Schouler.

Salstein partnered with his best friend of nearly 30 years and former Newmark Grubb Knight Frank broker David Lipp on The Kingdom’s first location at The Commons at Calabasas, part of the Caruso group of properties.

“It’s one of the most affluent neighborhoods in all of California. We really found that there was a void in the market,” Lipp said of the store’s location, adding that there’s also close enough proximity to major cities such as Los Angeles and Malibu.

The business partners, not yet off the ground with their first store, said they would consider additional locations in the U.S. but the focus on the immediate future is building out the clientele at The Commons with e-commerce potentially following.

Based on Salstein’s previous experience — working at places such as Capretto Shoes, handbag line VBH and St. John, along with starting his own labels Hunting Season and Our Lord & Saviour — he and Lipp are bent on creating an environment that’s approachable with nothing behind glass, focusing on what’s on the minds of most retailers: the experience.

“I think right now is a great time to enter [the market] if you have what the customer wants,” Salstein said. “The customer is educated and sophisticated. What they really crave is a one-on-one relationship.”

The Kingdom soft opens June 1 with a grand opening set for June 10.


By Kari Hamanaka