By Kevin Collison
The Delaware Street retail renaissance in the River Market is greeting a fresh face, a stylish women’s boutique called “Kate.”
Abby Flores, the owner of COCO and Lady Bye in Brookside, is combining the best of both “sister” stores in a boutique named after a strong woman she admires, actress Katharine Hepburn. She plans to open next month at 412 C Delaware.
Flores is looking forward to joining a stable of new business along Delaware that have opened over the past year under the direction of Craig Slawson. Slawson is the Denver developer who acquired a score of properties in the River Market two years ago.
“The River Market is on everyone’s radar these days thanks to the farmer’s market and all the revitalization along with the streetcar,” Flores said. “It’s a fantastic hub for the city.”
“Customers have been asking for a boutique on Delaware since we began curating for the destination, so we are excited to bring a locally owned merchant offering unique clothing, shoes and accessories to meet the need,” Slawson said in a statement.
Flores said Kate, which will occupy the 1,353 square-foot former Hair Spray Café space, will combine the more laidback West Coast fashion style of COCO, located at 112 W. 63rd St., and the modern classic East Coast vibe of Lady Bye, 6245 Brookside Plaza.
“They’re sister shops and like sisters, there’s some similarities but different style,” she said.
The River Market has had a men’s clothing store, Houndstooth, for five years, and Flores believes its ready for more retail.
“In general, the River Market is a fantastic destination both for people who live there, and the Kansas City metro and surrounding area,” she said. “It’s also a destination for out-of-towners coming to Kansas City for the weekend.
“What you’re looking for as a boutique owner is both walk-by traffic and destination traffic. You get a great mix of both there.”
Hours of the new Kate haven’t been determined, Flores wants to tailor them to activity in the River Market. The new boutique also is expected to employ several people, applicants can contact General Manager Paulina Boydston at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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