LeBron James’s resume doesn’t end with being the best player in basketball. The Lakers forward has branched out over the last several years into other fields, most notably as the shepherd of UNKNWN, a boutique that curates the best in sneakers and covetable streetwear. The retailer has just opened a stunning multi-purpose flagship in Miami to coincide with the city’s bustling Art Week.
Settling in the Wynwood district, the new 10,000-square-foot space has an expansive shop floor and uses urbane concrete shelves to display its colorful goods. A central, sculptural water feature that highlights its soaring ceilings. But the real showstopper is perhaps the open-air basketball court at the rear which is lined with palm trees, its bright blue and orange color scheme perfectly in sync with Miami’s aesthetic. The project was designed with artist John Margaritis of New York Sunshine and a 200-foot mural wall will eventually rotate work between new visual artists.
UNKNWN was cofounded by Jaron Kanfer, Frankie Walker Jr. and LeBron James, who opened their first store in 2011 with the goal of creating a more edited shopping destination for customers. The company has made the experience of shopping one of its key points of differentiation from the start, which makes the multi-faceted nature of its latest concept shop logical next step.
“What we wanted to do was make sure that for that guy who comes in he was not only able to get the latest and the best sneakers, but also put together some of the looks he may see on some of the blogs and things of that nature,” Walker told The Miami Herald. Some of the brands available in the store include Pleasure, Bape, Just Don and select re-releases of classic Jordans.
However exciting the new venture may be for shoppers and sneaker collectors, James is focused on the store’s bigger picture. “From the basketball court that will host community events to featuring custom collaborations and celebrating local art, this location is all about fusing fashion, sport, culture and community,” he said in a press release.