London Jewelers celebrates 90 years in business with the opening of its first New York City outpost—at the Oculus in lower Manhattan.
Nine decades of history isn’t about to stop London Jewelers from moving boldly into the future, as it prepares to set up shop in the soaring, Santiago Calatrava-designed Oculus.
When asked why London Jewelers, Long Island’s premier fine jewelry retailer, has been able to stay in business for nine decades at a time of never-ending turnover in retail, co-owner Candy Udell says it’s “because we are first and foremost a family business. Everyone in the family is so passionate about what they do.”
The London family—and the Udell family by marriage since 1946—has always emphasized taking care of clients, whatever their needs. “It’s our number-one virtue,” says Udell. “In today’s world, a good reputation and integrity are the most important things you can have. It means a lot to us to be able to uphold it every single day.”
That also means being involved in the community, she adds: “We love to support the customers who support us.” The company arrived on the East End in 1996, when Mark Udell, Candy’s husband, found a former VFW building and school badly in need of repair. It’s now the anchor of East Hampton’s tony, bustling downtown, something the Udells take great pride in.
“It serves the entire community,” she says, “both year-round and second-home people, and we have great relationships with all our clients.” Building lasting relationships is important to the Udells, and they’ll continue doing so in their newest venture, a London Jewelers boutique at the Oculus, the new transportation and retail hub in New York City’s Financial District.
“We’re so looking forward to coming into Manhattan,” says Udell. “We love downtown. It’s a great place for all kinds of people, and we’ll be able to take in their repairs, help with their anniversary gifts, birthday gifts—whatever they need, we’ll deliver. We’ll do whatever we need to do to make our clients happy, and our services will be the same as what people expect from our other stores.”
Opening August 16, the shop will offer pieces from London Jewelers partners such as Rolex and Tacori. “We’re the only Manhattan retailer to carry Tacori,” says Udell, “and it’s very exciting.” There will also be an associated Roberto Coin shop across from London Jewelers in the Oculus. “Roberto has been a friend of ours for 30 years,” she says, “and he’s a great addition under our umbrella.”
The new boutique will also feature the London Collection, which Udell designs with her daughter, Randi Udell-Alper, and they’ll continue their tradition of crafting custom original pieces (twice they created a bra for the Victoria’s Secret fashion show, one of them worth a whopping $2.5 million), although Udell expects traditional styles to remain popular.
“Classic is always in for engagement rings,” she says, adding that they can design anything the client desires, with trending stones including rubies, sapphires, and yellow diamonds. Van Cleef & Arpels, Cartier, David Yurman, and other brands will be available, but a partnership with the Women’s Jewelry Association will also bring in a rotating selection of pieces from new designers.
While it’s a busy year for London Jewelers and its family owners, Udell insists that they’ll never lose sight of their original mission: to provide outstanding service. “We’re in the business of making memories.” 2 Main St., East Hampton, 329-3939, and 185 Greenwich St., NYC, 877-601-9924
photography Courtesy of London JeweLers; RendeRing © dbox