In the midst of a year full of bad news about Warren businesses closing, here’s some good: Francis Jamiel will sell shoes on Main Street once again.
David Grande, a Lincoln resident who owns three family shoe stores in North Providence and Pawtucket will re-open the former Jamiel’s Shoe World soon, renaming the institution as “Savon Shoes.” Francis Jamiel, who managed the family-run Jamiel’s Shoe World in the same spot for years, will come back as manager of the store.
Mr. Jamiel wrote in an e-mail to customers and friends last week that the re-opened store will specialize in children’s footwear as well as top brands like Nike, Reebok, Uggs, Dansko, Clark’s and StrideRite.
“The inventory selection will be huge!” he wrote.
That it will, Mr. Grande said. He first heard about Jamiel’s some time ago and became interested in the building, though it is far afield from his other stores in the north-central part of hte state.
“We knew that it was an institution, and a great opportunity for us to get into the East Bay,” Mr. Grande said. “It’s a different area but the people are very friendly; we’re a family business and it’s a perfect town for it.”
Since Mr. Grande signed the deal to bring Savon to town, he’s spent a lot of time at the vacant store front, getting it ready for the re-opening. Numerous people have come in and said hello, he said, and seem genuinely happy to see the place come back.
When it does open, Savon will carry a broader selection of shoes than the former Jamiel’s. High-end and quality brands such as Keen, Nike, Ugg, Dansko, Rockport, Timberland, Merrill and others will be for sale, as will so-called “fashion” footwear, including high end sneaker products. There will also be a large selection of women’s dress shoes.
Mr. Grande said the store will be completely remodeled, with new hardwoods inside, and he expects every inch of the store’s 7,000 total square feet to be filled with stock.
He’s optimistic about Savon’s chances in Warren, and said he plans to use social media to help market his business effectively. In the end, though, it’s about the customers, and he likes what he sees so far.
“People are enthusiastic,” Mr. grande said. “We’re anxious to get going.”