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French Luxury Swimwear Brand Vilebrequin Opens 1st Canadian Storefront in Montreal [Photos]

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French luxury brand Vilebrequin, known for its colourful swimwear and fashions for men and women, has opened its first Canadian storefront in Montreal’s affluent Westmount area. 

The store is located at 4912 Sherbrooke Street in a 1,148 square foot space. Included is a range of swim styles for men, women, boys and girls as well as ready-to-wear, accessories and beach day essentials. 

The store design is inspired by the vibrant azure and white hues of the Mediterranean Sea. The brand said in a statement that the colourful environment “brings its signature sense of laidback, seaside cool while hinting at the glamourous lifestyle of the French Riviera”. 

Vilebrequin Montreal (Image: Vilebrequin)
Vilebrequin Montreal (Image: Vilebrequin)

The brand is known primarily for its pricey swimwear. Vilebrequin has expanded into fashions for men, women and kids including an assortment of fashion and accessories and even flip flops priced at $110 CAD according to the retailer’s website. The brand says that it celebrates “the art of carefree living in the sun all year long” and that it is focused on developing and implementing sustainable solutions, fabrics, and processes “that only make an impact on vacation, not on the ocean”.

The Westmount storefront is owned by franchisee Cheryl Glense, who has been a staple in Montreal and Westmount fashion for decades. Glense owns two high-end independent boutiques a block away from the new Vilebrequin store. That includes Courval Fine Lingerie which she recently acquired as well as the 40-year-old Ritsi women’s fashion boutique.

No other Vilebrequin stores are planned for Canada at this time. 

Vilebrequin was founded in 1971 in Saint Tropez by Fred Prysquel, a photographer and sports automobile journalist and his wife Yvette, a fashion designer. Interestingly, Fred is colorblind and Yvette picks out all the colours. In 2012 the company was acquired by US-based G-III Apparel Group Ltd. The company has over 170 stores globally in 62 countries as well as distribution in multi-brand retailers. 

Article Author

Craig Patterson
Craig Patterson
Located in Toronto, Craig is the Publisher & CEO of Retail Insider Media Ltd. He is also a retail analyst and consultant, Advisor at the University of Alberta School Centre for Cities and Communities in Edmonton, and a public speaker. He has studied the Canadian retail landscape for over 25 years and he holds Bachelor of Commerce and Bachelor of Laws Degrees.

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1 COMMENT

  1. This is an impressive coup for Cheryl Glense to land the first stand alone Vilebrequin store in Canada. It’s even more remarkable when any brand opens a first-in-Canada location somewhere that’s not Greater Vancouver or Greater Toronto. Westmount’s Victoria Village stretch of Sherbrooke Street West is on the comeback. It was only three years ago that stories in the media, including televised coverage, featured worrying reports about store closures and increasing vacancies. Now that it’s become a hotspot for upmarket retail, the question is why there? Why not Greene Avenue or Westmount Square? The real estate heat seems to migrate capriciously: I’m old enough to remember when the chic, commercial part of Sherbrooke Street West stretched from the Roddick gates at McGill to about Fort Street. The Ritz-Carlton is still there, the Museum Fine Arts, The McCord Museum, the grand apartment buildings, and of course the McGill Campus too, but the retailers have mostly decamped, especially after the closure of the old Holt Renfrew location. But The Golden Square Mile has not entirely lost its luster. With all the new condominium developments going up nearby, I’m hopeful that the vibrancy found in Victoria Village will also return further east.

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