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Giorgio Conti Jewelers Prioritizes Hangout Space in Metro Detroit Boutique


Giorgio Conti Jewelers is entering its fourth decade of business with a shift in its retail philosophy, creating a destination boutique that is more tailored in its fine jewelry selection and has spaces for customers to relax and socialize.

The family-owned business relocated from one metro Detroit suburb city to another: It moved from a multistory office building that catered to jewelers in Southfield to a smaller, street-front retail location on Woodward Avenue in Ferndale. Owner Joseph Shihadeh says the move is part of the company’s efforts to connect with new customers.

“We were in Southfield for 40 years inside the Advance Building on the third floor. Clients came to see us directly,” Shihadeh says. “We wanted to transition for a few years now to where we could have more of a boutique experience and customers could spend time and feel like they could hang out.”

Conti interior image
The new Giorgio Conti Jewelers boutique features multiple seating areas for customers to meet for custom orders as well as just to hang out.

Shihadeh says the Advance office location was about 4,000 square feet, but it was difficult for new customers to find Giorgio Conti Jewelers. The Ferndale boutique at 22637 Woodward Avenue is around 2,100 square feet, where every inch counts in terms of what kind of jewelry is displayed and how the store feels, Shihadeh says.

“We changed the floor plan completely. We still have small offices and a workshop for custom jewelry and repairs. But we pulled back on inventory, created a better atmosphere, and have this great lounge area where people can sit together,” Shihadeh says. “It’s common now for clients on a Saturday to be sitting on our couch, enjoying champagne, and talking.”

The new store’s exterior is immediately eye-catching along the famous Woodward Avenue corridor with its black cladding and all black window trim. Its glass door and sizable windows allow ample natural light to flood into the boutique.

Inside, Giorgio Conti Jewelers created a sleek, all-white gallery canvas for its gold case and lounge area. Wall-mounted glass cases as well as modern artwork decorate the walls. The lighting is modern and simple, allowing the jewelry to shine. The sitting area at the front is defined by a warm rug and tons of live plants, and features a large, comfortable couch along with several chairs.

Giorgio Conti lounge
The Giorgio Conti lounge area feels like a living room, giving customers a space to chat, talk jewelry, or enjoy a glass of champagne.

It’s the kind of atmosphere Shihadeh says he wanted, fitting into the more modern way of shopping for jewelry where clients feel like it is homey yet elevated.

“It’s a strolling concept floor plan that is finished and inviting,” Shihadeh says.

Giorgio Conti Jewelers specializes in its own custom jewelry and new and certified pre-owned name-brand watches, so having more specialized inventory has been a welcome shift, Shihadeh says. The boutique still gets longtime clients as well as a slowly growing number of new customers who are popping in as they shop in Ferndale or hear about the new location.

Giorgio Conti Jewelers is planning a grand-opening celebration in April. Shihadeh says he hopes people around metro Detroit will stop in to enjoy a drink, check out the jewelry, and stay a while.

“We are thrilled to be a part of the Ferndale community and share our passion for exceptional jewelry with its residents,” Shihadeh says. “We believe that every piece of jewelry tells a story, and we are excited to help our customers find the perfect piece.”

Top: Michigan-based Giorgio Conti Jewelers recently moved from Southfield to Ferndale, creating a more relaxed jewelry-shopping atmosphere, says owner Joseph Shihadeh. (Photos by Jasmine Weddle/courtesy of Giorgio Conti Jewelers)


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Karen Dybis

By: Karen Dybis

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