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Businesses in Southbank

27 Oct 2014

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It may be just a short trip from Albert Park, but Scoogle’s brand-new premises in Wells St, Southbank is vastly different than its predecessor.

As proprietor Josie Redmond puts it, after six years in the designer-spectacle space, Scoogle has “grown up”.

This is evidenced by her new approach to matching frames to faces – which doesn’t involve the actual product being on display.

As long-term clients attest, Josie’s talent is suggesting what is going to work best for each individual, so it’s now a consultation rather than a retail experience that is on offer.

“It’s a service approach where the customer is the absolute focus,” Josie said. “I guess it comes down to having the type of trust that our returning customers have.”

“Over the years we’re heard them say so many times: ‘I love these frames but I would never have tried them on’.”

Another aspect of Scoogle’s development is the in-store optometry provided by contact lens specialist Loan Vu.  Loan’s other strengths include expertise in ortho-keratology, a technique of correcting vision through wearing contact lenses.

Scoogle is a great match with Southbank’s cosmopolitan feel and artistic tendencies.

Stocking just three brands, Scoogle is confident and relaxed that it is the destination for people with the most discerning taste.

“All our frames are hand-made so we appeal to people who approach life from a design perspective,” she said.

“If you’re going to have to wear glasses, then why not wear a piece of art that has been created by a craftsman?”

Scoogle stocks Belgian brands Theo and Hoek, with Hoek making only 200 pieces of each frame worldwide.

And Scoogle is also the global flagship store for up-and-coming Australian brand Niloca.  According to Josie, Niloca is turning heads at the European shows this year but she may be biased, as the range has been created by her industrial-designer-husband Colin.

Niloca is a Southbank success story, with the locally-designed, French-manufactured product being available in 40 stockists globally and being heralded with critical acclaim.

Colin has also applied his design talents to the shop fit-out.  Inspired by the Guilfoyle-designed botanical gardens, the store has an indoor-outdoor feel encased in a vaulted, raw-steel industrial conservatory which could be mistaken for an apocalyptic gothic cathedral.

Scoogle is a destinational retail outlet, with loyal customers returning from wider metropolitan Melbourne, regional Victoria, interstate and even internationally.

Josie says the new Southbank location brings the store closer to the centre of Melbourne and makes it even more accessible due to ample parking and proximity to St Kilda Rd trams.

“It boils down to having a personal consultation to get the best frame and the best script for your face,” she said.

Scoogle can be found at 131 Wells St, Southbank. Ph: 9077 9883

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