I went on a shopping spree, well more like a window shopping spree (Summer fun with the kids is cutting into my shopping budget) following Southern Living magazine’s advise.
This month they featured 7 Miami boutiques in their travel section and I took a day last week to go check them all out.
All of the stores they recommended were on Miami Beach but only one was in what I consider South Beach “proper.” Some would consider that an oxymoron, but there are definite boundaries to the heart of the Art Deco, bikini/thong clad, anything, I MEAN ANYTHING goes district, that gives this area its reputation. I mean there is South Beach, and then there is SOUTH BEACH…does that make sense? We’re talking Ocean Drive and Collins Ave from 5th through 22nd Street… And that might be stretching it but I thought I should include the W Hotel.
The Orchid Boutique is located at 8th Street and Collins Avenue.
If Southern Living had not recommended this store I might have walked on by (sorry Orchid Boutique). Not that it doesn’t have a nice store front, but from my experience, the South Beach stores that display swimsuits, and are not national chains that we all know and love, are a little bit, if I may be frank, cheesy and cheap (not necessarily price, but material).
But what do I know? Obviously, not much, because I had probably my best bathing suit trying on experience of my life at the Orchid Boutique. And it is not because I LOOK the best I have ever looked in a suit- no pictures here, you are just going to have to trust me on this one.
I loved the Orchid Boutique because
1. The inventory was beautiful and unique, yet not over the top expensive. It seems like I could buy a suit here and not see it walking by me on every trip I take to the beach.
2. The space was bright, light and not filled to the brim with inventory, which I find overwhelming. Walking in this beautiful shop took me to a happy place, which is a good place to start when trying on swim suits.
3. The sales person was super nice and accommodating. I believe there is an art to being helpful, yet not pushy, and suggestive, but not judgemental when it comes to selling clothes, or anything, really. The perfect sales associate some how knows when to leave a shopper alone to browse by themselves or when to come to the rescue when a customer needs some help. The sales person at Orchid Boutique, whose name I wish I knew, was all that and more which made my shopping experience very pleasant.
Southern Living magazine explained, “The Orchid Boutique is an e-retailer that went brick-and-mortar in March, giving beach bunnies instant access to their unique collection of 22 hand-picked labels.”
I found that I really loved the brightly colored Columbian line, Maaji.
According to the About page of their own website, “the Maaji signature has been built up by avant-garde combinations and prints, mix of materials and textures, inventive and cutting-edge silhouettes and the sweetness and ubiquitous presence of small details.” I think that it is the mix of material feel that I liked best and really made this line feel special and unique. The fabrics felt very expensive and BONUS, their suits were reversible… so with one purchase it’s almost like you are getting two bathing suits for one. PLUS, when you purchase a suit from the Maaji Underwater Conquest Collection, the company will plant a tree in your honor. Click on the link below for further details of the company’s environmental initiative and a fun tool that let’s you calculate your own carbon footprint:
I am excited that Southern Living magazine introduced me to this beautiful boutique. Shopping for a new bathing suit can be quite stressful but I know from now on I won’t have to look any further than the Orchid Boutique.
Don’t worry, even if you don’t live in Miami you have full access to this store online. Visit their store at: <a href="http://www.theorchidboutique.com
And here is a tip: if you want to make your swimsuit shopping day more enjoyable, just stay away from the 3 way mirrors. You can FEEL if a suit doesn’t fit correctly on your backside, right? Why worry too much with what lies on the other side? If you look in the mirror and what you see makes you smile just go with it- trust me, it will completely change your bathing suit shopping experience.