Germantown-based Kessler’s Diamonds announced that it plans to open a store in downtown Milwaukee in the George Watts & Son Building at 761 N. Jefferson St.
The new store will open Oct. 1, occupying 2,200 square feet of space in the building.
“This is a fantastic and vibrant area, and our store there will give us a strong presence on the east side of metro Milwaukee,” said Richard Kessler, president of the employee-owned company. “With the Pfister Hotel across the street, Northwestern Mutual constructing its new office tower nearby, all the other great businesses and the activities such as Jazz in the Park, it’s a very attractive part of town.”
Kesslers currently has five stores in Germantown, Greenfield, Brookfield, Appleton and Madison. The company also plans to open a store in Grand Rapids, Mich. On Nov. 1.
“With the downtown Milwaukee center, access to a Kesslers Diamonds (store) will be very convenient to anyone I the metro area,” Kessler said.
Kessler said he also is excited about being part of a wedding-focused destination, as the George Watts & Son Building is home to George Watts & Son, Watts Tea Shop, Zita Bridal Salon, and Walny Legal Group.
“Kesslers Diamonds is a perfect fit for us,” said Sam Watts, president and COO of George Watts & Son. “I was thrilled when Zita Bridal Salon located here nearly four years ago. With Kesslers Diamonds, our building becomes the premier bridal destination. The industry leaders will all be in one location.”
Kesslers Diamonds deals exclusively in diamonds, and is Wisconsin’s largest seller of diamonds and diamond engagement rings.
The downtown Kesslers space is being designed by Milwaukee-based Retailworks, Inc. The company said the interior space of the downtown Kesslers store “will be a visual showpiece with unique finishes, specialty lighting, and clever focal points. Key windows will have New York style’ art installations, creating a buzz on Mason and Jefferson streets.” Changed on a regular basis, those displays will become a “must see” for locals and out-of-town visitors, Kessler said.
“We’ll have a very inviting appearance that will have a bit of a twist on the already strong Kesslers Diamond brand design to appeal to the downtown market while respecting the historic integrity of the iconic Watts building,” Kessler said.
The space was made available when DeLind Gallery of Fine Art owner William DeLind decided to retire and close the business. Watts said he immediately thought of Kessler’s Diamonds as a new tenant for the space, based on its reputation and the synergies the diamond center would create with the other businesses there.
“One of our great assets is the reputation we’ve earned over our 150 years in business,” Watts said. “When we have space available, we look for stellar businesses that have earned excellent reputations, as well.”