When I go shopping, I want go to a store that has a bigger vision than just making money. I want to go to a place that has a soul; that really cares about the customer and knows how to have fun. A.K. Rikk’s is the rare business that has all the right personality traits!
If you asked me about A.K. Rikk’s two weeks ago, my reaction probably would have been “Who? What?” Lol! In just a short amount of time, however, they have made me one of their biggest fans.
A.K. Rikk’s is an upscale boutique located in Grand Rapids, Michigan. A.K. Rikk’s is set in a sleek, modern setting that carries on-trend designer apparel from all over the world, with a focus on European style trends for both men & women. When you think about boutiques, you probably imagine a small, cozy setting. For me, A.K. Rikk’s is the size of a department store (28,000 square foot), but has the personalized, family culture you would expect from a small boutique.
Last Thursday, I was invited to their Tokyo Meets Silicon Valley || A.K. Rikk’s E-Commerce Site Launch Celebration along with other local influencers. When I walked in to the store, I was warmly greeted by A.K. Rikk’s Events Coordinator, Kelley Hughes. Right away, they offered to take my coat and get me a glass of wine from their fully stocked bar. I had read about their outstanding VIP level services on Yelp from other customers and it always feels great when I’m treated like a million bucks! Lol! While I was sipping my wine and chatting with others, I was also blown away by the beautiful interior of the store.
Each of us got the chance to experience A.K. Rikk’s personalized shopping service firsthand, with a couple of fun personal stylists. I told my stylist, Morgan, I was looking for a pair of jeans that fits me perfectly and I wouldn’t need to shorten. Lol, if you are a petite woman like me, you know how annoying it is to hem every new pair of pants, right? Sure enough, she and another stylist, Amanda, found me the perfect pair of black jeans and a great pair of white jeans (no hemming required for either one). It didn’t take long for me to notice that A.K. Rikk’s attracted a very special type of employee. Everyone there was very stylish, modern, and edgy, but still possessed a timeless taste. Not only did they look the part, but everyone who worked there seemed to be having fun! I was so eager to find out why.
After a 50 minute tour in this beautiful store with President, Jim Murray, I got the answer. By the way, you can watch the whole Facebook Live below to see what I mean. When a business truly focuses on people, the goals for the business becomes very clear. A.K. Rikk’s focuses not only on their customers, but also on their staff, their suppliers, and their communities. With a focus on people, A.K. Rikk’s is able to maximize their clients personalized shopping experience, maximize each member of the staffs talents in their respective roles, find suppliers with a similar vision, and make giving back to the community more fun and stylish. Who would not like shopping or working at a business with such a warm heart, right?
Our fun continued after the tour. All the influencers did an 8 minute styling challenge. Basically, we needed to style an outfit for the same model in 8 minutes using something from the store. I didn’t win, but it was so fun to see all the fabulous outfits everyone created. After this, we visited the E-commerce center, and I was like, “They are really killing the game!”
With everything digitized there was no need for a photographer. The machines and iPads effortlessly took and edited the photos, and even put all the videos together. How crazy! We were all having fun taking pictures with the high tech machines that it made me wish that I had one at my house for my photos!
After all the excitement, we were further spoiled by getting a limo ride to our dinner before the launch party. When we got back to the store, the place was already packed. On a Thursday night, with more than 250 stylish people in attendance, it had to be a fantastic party, right?
I am not much of a dancer, but even I danced for about 2 hours. Lol! Did you see my dance moves?! I had so much fun! By the way, the founder of A.K. Rikk’s, Rick Gaby, was at the celebration too. He is such a stylish man himself, of course, and he started to dance when everyone else hesitated at the beginning of the party. Lol. I chatted with him and was fascinated by his story. Since this post is already super long, I am not going to talk about it in this post, but you can watch this YouTube video to learn more about him.
Two weeks ago, A.K. Rikk ’s was a total stranger to me. Now, I know we are going to hear a whole lot about them in the near future! Watch out world, A.K. Rikk’s is coming!
Photo credit: Grace Liang/@firstname.lastname@example.org/@bradgillette
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