Following yesterday’s announcement that Zara would open a two-level flagship location at the Mall of America comes today’s news that retailer Mona Williams will also be coming to the megamall this May. While the merchandise selection of its original location has been focused on designer vintage, the Mall of America location will emphasize the hard-to-find European brands that owner Patric Richardson has slowly been incorporating into his original Northeast storefront, such as Copenhagen’s Baum und Pferdgarten.
“I’ve been describing it as ‘international style with a Minnesota sensibility,'” Richardson tells me. “I want to combine things that feel very European with the artsy-casual vibe of Minneapolis—modern, wearable, and easy.”
He says he was originally planning to open the store later this summer, but the MOA management convinced him to give it a go earlier in order to capture the mall’s summer tourism spike. The shop will open in the former location of Caché on a temporary basis—”as a test for both myself and the mall to make sure it’s the right fit,” says Richardson. He plans to open with spring and pre-fall collections from his roster of designer lines, including Baum and Paris brand Each x Other, plus knits from Autumn Cashmere, luxury basics from Paris-based t-shirt brand Majestic, and unisex raincoats from Norway. True to the store’s origins, it will feature a rotating selection of vintage-designer clothing, with a different theme each week.
The store will also feature an expanded apothecary highlighting cult products Richardson has culled from around the world, including Italian toothpaste, Scandinavian soap, volcanic-ash soap from Iceland, and made-in-Minnesota aromatherapy dots that release as the body heats up. The apothecary is key for the store because “I want everybody to be able to buy something—and it doesn’t have to be a $600 raincoat,” says Richardson.