Inspiring new stores reinforce Whitaker Street as a shopping destination
The Downtown Design District — home to the cluster of shops along Whitaker Street roughly between West Charlton Lane and West Taylor Street — was born in 2002, when friends and entrepreneurs Gale Singer and Jennifer Grayson purchased the building where their respective shops, Circa Lighting and One Fish Two Fish, were located.
“We didn’t have two nickels to rub together, but we knew investing in the building meant investing in our businesses and ourselves,” Grayson recalls. Nearly two decades later, a slew of recently opened stores is continuing the area’s chic legacy, bringing high-end design and fresh aesthetic to a storied Savannah neighborhood.
Here, take a stroll along this stylish street to see what’s new.
Hannah E. | 412 Whitaker Street
A Hershey, Pennsylvania, native, Hannah Lewis had been coming to visit Savannah, where her family had a home, for five years before deciding to open her shop last fall. “My whole concept is simple staples; those pieces that form your capsule wardrobe,” she says. “I want customers to find their perfect jeans or top — the piece they’ll continue to wear.” Her well-curated boutique, Hannah E., delivers with vintage-inspired denim from AMO, colorful and cozy knits by CeliaB and other labels that shoppers won’t find elsewhere in the city.
StoneLords | 415 E. Whitaker Street
After working for more than 15 years in fashion and costume design for film and television in New York, Roz Morris returned to Savannah last year and opened StoneLords, a concept shop that blends style, art and music. Each piece in the store, whether a simple, handcrafted silver necklace from Hireth Jewelry, or a statement, metallic Sabina Musayev cocktail dress, represents Morris’ aesthetic, which sits squarely at the intersection of art and fashion. As for what’s next? “I want to bring in local, indie and ethical designers — and launch some of our own pieces,” she says.
The Printed Peach | 417 Whitaker St.
As Savannah’s only locally owned and operated Lilly Pulitzer store, The Printed Peach offers shoppers the chance to peruse a number of colorful shifts, tops, sweaters and more in an airy and bright boutique. There’s something for everyone here, from muted, pastel knits to the more recognizable elements of the Lilly Pulitzer brand: bold, pattern-covered frocks in bright gem tones.
Gaston Crue Lifestyle & Interiors | 412 Whitaker St.
After opening his first store in Vidalia, Georgia, Gaston Crue Conley opened his second lifestyle and interiors shop in Savannah last fall. The interior designer offers design and decor services, but customers can also drop by his Whitaker Street boutique to pick up more traditional home goods, like Thucassi candles and scent diffusers, or more one-of-a-kind pieces, like Georgia-made, hair-on-hide wine totes. www.gastoncrue.com
Asher + Rye 348 | Whitaker St.
Erika and Joel Snayd, wife and husband, and co-founders of Rethink Design Studio, bring their Scandinavian-inspired, high-touch flair for interiors to their first brick-and-mortar shop, Asher + Rye. From antique algae terra cotta pots to wicker furniture to a number of home goods (think brass shelves or lavender hand wash), the store is a visual representation of the couple’s tastes, travels and experiences.
“After designing for clients for nearly two decades, it was exciting to share our own tastes — the things we liked — without limitations,” Joel Snyad says. As Erika adds, the store is just the beginning. “I’m excited to explore a food concept and also think about what the space could be for our community,” she says.