A New Home for "Brides of Beverly Hills"
...and we are OPEN!
I'm so very proud and excited to announce that the new salon -- Renée Strauss for the Platinum Bride -- is open, and we have shot the first 2 episodes of Brides of Beverly Hills in our new home.
The salon is located on La Cienega Boulevard at the cusp of Melrose Place (the "Rodeo Drive of Bridal”). Visitors are greeted with soaring two-story windows and my brand spanking new sign. This truly is a wonderful neighborhood! Fig and Olive, the restaurant where the President and First Lady dined when last in LA, is directly across the street. Neil Lane Jewelry is kitty-corner from me. Monique Lhuillier (Monique purchased her bridal gown from me when she got married!) and Vera Wang are a stone’s throw away.
Much thought went into the floor plan and design of the space, and I am just thrilled with it. I created five distinct spaces that have their own personalities, yet work beautifully together.
As you enter the salon, you are greeted by a stunningly dressed mannequin enveloped in my signature gold shingled backdrop. You immediately realize you have entered a treasure trove.
Take a few steps into the reception salon -- an art gallery of couture gowns set off by our oh-so-contemporary bright chartreuse walls. A United Nations of wedding gown design, I cannot imagine a bride not finding the dress of her dreams here. Colors: silk white, ivory, platinum, blush, lavender. Fabrics: silk organza, tulle, silk satin duchese, alencon lace, chantilly. Everything you imagine to be the most luxurious, right here. Ines di Santo, Liancarlo Couture, St. Pucchi, Sareh Nouri and Stephen Yearick to name but a few of the designers who have partnered with us to showcase their gorgeous gowns to the world!
Step into the great room, a sophisticated chamber of rhapsody, titanium and sea fog colored furnishings with French roast accents and an impressive fireplace mantel as the focal point (or maybe Kevin’s one-of-a-kind high back “throne” is the focal point -- you decide). The windows peek out into our garden, where we had our production party last week. My incredibly generous and gracious friend, Steve Lang, virtually stocked the great room. His company Mon Cheri has 21 independent licensed bridal lines including Kathy Ireland, Sophia Tolli, Tony Bowls and James Clifford. I am so grateful to Steve for his amazing participation. The payoff came immediately as one of our brides on the show purchased a James Clifford the day the collections arrived!
But we are not done yet!
Step to the south side of the space. Being in a bridal salon can be intimidating to many men, so I created an espresso bar complete with generously sized stools where the Men of Our Lives could rest an arm or read the paper while the Love of Their Life or Darling Daughter slips on her next gown. Pasquini Coffee Co. set up the most efficient espresso machine that makes delicious coffees and provided their gorgeous signature cups to serve it in!
I don’t know about you, but I love a piece of chocolate with coffee. Candy by Sandee did me proud by creating a sumptuous candy display with oversized glass decanters filled to the brim with the good stuff.
Adjacent to the espresso bar is the main salon. While the dearly beloved tries on gowns from European designers Complice and Elizabetta B, a conversation nook allows the MOB, SOB (that’s Sister of the Bride) and trusted friends to comfortably gather and view the bride's selections. An ornately framed mirror makes every bride feel like she is enjoying the lap of luxury.
Actress Mae West once joked “too much of anything is wonderful.” I think that describes my favorite area in the salon, the boudoir. Stepping into this space feels as though you have entered a fabulous private dressing room of royalty or a celebrity. Something along the lines of what Elizabeth Taylor would have had for herself, and yet it's for you and me! Bridesmaid dresses, Mother of the Bride dresses and select evening wear complete our offerings. Gorgeous, oversized framed photographs from Jen O'Sullivan provide both an elegant setting and inspiration for the brides-to-be. Mirrored cabinets dazzle with tiaras, belts, shoes and jewelry from around the world.
I don’t know what blows me away more: how beautifully the salon has come together, or the astounding support I have received by so many people and companies I’ve worked with over the years. I am blessed with love and encouragement from an amazing husband, family, co-star, network, producers, crew and colleagues. No one can do this by themselves.
Please stay tuned as I report on upcoming events in the salon, and all the glossy and exciting things we have planned.
The best is yet to come!
For more from Renée, visit her blog, Brides Made.
All images courtesy Renée Strauss. From top to bottom: the exterior of the salon, the mannequin in the salon's entryway, the main salon, the great room, the candy display adjacent to the espresso bar, the boudoir.