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NEW ORLEANS — Two prominent New Orleans area jewelers are setting up shop in Baton Rouge’s newest upscale retail center, marking both companies’ first foray into that city’s marketplace.

Canal Street stalwart Adler’s will open a gallery in Towne Center at Cedar Lodge in Baton Rouge this summer said the development’s spokeswoman Toby Stark. Jeweler Mignon Faget will also open a store in the same retail development in August, said company Executive Vice President Virginia Saussy Bairnsfather.

Towne Center, a project of The Creekstone Cos. of Houston, is a 440,000-square-foot retail and office development at the intersection of Jefferson Highway and Corporate Boulevard opening in phases this spring and summer. The project will be anchored by a Whole Foods Market opening in June.

Stark said Adler’s owner Coleman E. Adler Jr. has agreed to open an 8,000-square-foot gallery that will offer antique and contemporary jewelry as well as china and crystal. She said Adler and the center’s developers have discussed the possibility of bringing a Waldhorn & Adler Antiques store to the site as well, though that is not a done deal.

Adler did not immediately return a phone call seeking comment for this article.

Saussy Bairnsfather said at 2,000 square feet, Mignon Faget’s Towne Center gallery will be one of its largest. The company also has two stores in New Orleans in Uptown and in Canal Place Shopping Center as well as a store in Lakeside Shopping Center in Metairie.

Saussy Bairnsfather said when Towne Center officials first approached the company about the Baton Rouge location “we were instantly interested.” That interest was only bolstered she said by market research the company conducted showing the sizeable name recognition Mignon Faget has in the Baton Rouge community.

“Baton Rouge is booming,” she said. “This is a great location in the center of Baton Rouge in a nice high-income neighborhood that’s also close to LSU. … It’s a good natural growth area for Mignon. It’s a New Orleans product and it’s a south Louisiana product so the next logical step would be to go to Baton Rouge."

Adler’s and Mignon Faget will join an already crowded Baton Rouge jewelry market. Lee Michaels, Classic Jewelers, Barker’s and Ballin’s Ltd. are just a few of the more prominent jewelers in the area. Baton Rouge-based Lee Michaels is also reportedly building a new gallery across Corporate Boulevard from Towne Center.

“This will be jewelry central in Baton Rouge,” said Saussy Bairnsfather, who added she doesn’t believe the competition will be too much for Mignon Faget to handle. “We think we’re bringing something new into the marketplace and any advertising the others do will only help us.”

Mignon Faget will move some of the antique cases from the Dublin Street location, which it closed last year, to the Baton Rouge store “to recreate the atmosphere in the original store,” Saussey Bairnsfather said.

By A.J. Mistretta
The Biz Network

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