Lush wood grain, fine clothing, furnishings, accessories and impeccably trained employees all await visitors to the Brooks Brothers store at Biltmore Fashion Park. The apparel, like Abraham Lincoln and the 39 other U.S. presidents outfitted by the oldest men’s clothier in the United States, is woven into our country’s history, commands attention and leaves a striking impression.
It’s no surprise that the brand founded in 1818 is built on being truly a one-stop shop for high quality suits, tuxedos, shirts, ties, pants, blazers, belts, socks, shoes, polo/sport shirts, walking shorts, underwear, watches, sunglasses, cufflinks, tie bars, hats, gloves, scarves, pocket squares, umbrellas, wallets, pens, stationery, briefcases, attaché cases, cologne, dresses and even leather-bound diaries.
Brooks Brothers offers fashions for both men and women, as it does 20 percent of its business in women’s clothing and accessories. And if you walked into the Biltmore Fashion Park store right now, you’d likely be greeted warmly by associate Robert Rosenthal, a purveyor of excellent sartorial advice primed to provide Brooks Brothers’ legendary customer service.
Robert has a unique ability to gain his customers’ confidence before he’s even said his first word. His signature, custom-made vests, striking cufflinks and classic collar pin leave no doubt that timeless style is this former New Yorker’s forte.
“Really, how you dress is your business card,” Robert says. “Style is the perfection of a point of view.”
At Brooks Brothers, Robert assists his clients in defining and expressing their stylistic points of view. In addition to Brooks Brothers’ suits, vests, ties and shoes, a fully realized outfit includes four key accessories.
“The standout accessories are a distinctive watch, classy or conversational cufflinks, a tie bar and of course, a collar pin,” Robert says.
Not widely used today, Robert explains that the collar pin attaches to both sides of the collar, running directly underneath the tie knot area. It is typically worn with a pointed or rounded collar and is designed to accentuate the tie knot while keeping the collar tight. Collar pins were worn by luminaries including Frank Sinatra, Fred Astaire, Mad Men’s 1960s-era Roger Sterling and by many of the characters in the show Boardwalk Empire, set in Prohibition-era Atlantic City. A collar pin is also worn each day at Brooks Brothers by one modern-era Robert Rosenthal.
“The collar pin was a classy look that made great sense to me way back when I began to develop my own personal style,” Robert says. “I maintain the look to this day because I never tire of the elegance it affords me. The collar pin is a small detail that presents a big impression.”
Whether it’s closing a big business deal, nailing that first big job interview, applying to college or anything in between, Brooks Brothers associates are there to help their customers feel confident, achieve success and look their best. And Robert is one of the best.
“In addition to being our top sales associate, Robert possesses deep expertise and passion about style and all things Brooks Brothers,” says Itzia Gonzales, store manager for Brooks Brothers Biltmore Fashion Park. “He is a true gentleman with an undeniable ability to connect with our customers and create a personalized experience for them.”
Robert works hard to make Brooks Brothers’ customers’ style appear effortless.
“Famous English fashion designer Hardy Amies, Queen Elizabeth II’s official dressmaker, once said ‘A man should look as if he had bought his clothes with intelligence, put them on with care, and then forgotten all about them,’” Robert says.
And how have both Brooks Brothers, which is getting ready to celebrate its 200th anniversary, and Robert, preparing to celebrate his one-year anniversary at the Biltmore Fashion Park store, lasted so long in the ultra-competitive, perpetually evolving world of fashion?
“Yves Saint Laurent’s quote ‘fashions fade, style is eternal’ has been my personal theme from the very beginning and will continue to be until my final day in this world,” Robert says.
– Written by Josh Coddington, marketing and communications manager, Greater Phoenix Chamber of Commerce.