ALLENTOWN, Pa. — A prominent business owner and Allentown’s newest councilman plans to expand his retail business into downtown Allentown.

Santo Napoli, owner of assembly88 men’s clothing, footwear and accessories store at 544 Hamilton St., plans to open a women’s fashion boutique adjacent to assembly88 later this year at 542 Hamilton St.

The new store, which is expected to open in late summer or early fall, will occupy a renovated space that previously housed Lehigh Valley Pretrial Services, Inc., which recently moved to the lower level of 501 Hamilton St.







assembly88

Santo Napoli, owner of assembly88 men’s clothing, footwear and accessories store at 544 Hamilton St. in downtown Allentown, plans to open a women’s fashion store adjacent to assembly88 later this year at 542 Hamilton St.




The name of the new store is still being finalized, but it will have a connection to its neighbor – something like assembly88 women or assembly88 for her, Napoli said.

Interior connections in a party wall will allow customers to pass from the men’s side to the women’s side and vice versa without going outside.

“You will also be able to make purchases for men and women at the checkouts on both sides,” Napoli said. “I don’t want it to be where a husband and wife come in and have to check out at two different times. It’s a pain. So if someone buys two items for men and two items for women, they can’t do only one purchase on either side.”

Napoli opened assemblage88 in 2014 and previously operated other Hamilton Street fashion stores, The Archive and New York Urban.

When opening assembly88, Napoli aimed to create a shopping destination for the mature man “who wants to look smart and confident, whether in a boardroom or at a football match”, according to a description on the company’s website.

The store, featuring exposed brick walls, a restored tin ceiling and the original 19th century hardwood flooring, combines “the strength of the city’s manufacturing heritage with the harmonious professionalism of its 21st century renaissance”. .

There are also enlarged photos of Allentown’s manufacturing heyday displayed on the walls.







Assembly 88

Santo Napoli, owner of assembly88 men’s clothing, footwear and accessories store at 544 Hamilton St. in downtown Allentown, plans to open a women’s fashion store adjacent to assembly88 later this year at 542 Hamilton St.




Napoli, the son of Italian immigrants, chose the name assembly88 in homage to Kramer’s House of Music – the original occupant of 544 Hamilton St. – and the number of keys on the pianos that were built and sold there. .

The new women’s store will be similar to assembly88’s long, narrow footprint, but will be about 2 feet wider, Napoli said.

“It will have a similar aesthetic, but the plan with the architect is that we’re going to make it a bit softer for women,” Napoli said. “We’re also adding additional dressing rooms – larger ones that can accommodate pushchairs. So we’re really thinking about it and wanting it to become a friendly and fun place for women to shop.”

Assembly88 carries over a dozen leading clothing brands, including Faherty, Marine Layer and Peter Millar, as well as high-quality footwear and accessories such as belts, hats, socks and wallets.







assembly88

Santo Napoli, owner of assembly88 men’s clothing, footwear and accessories store at 544 Hamilton St. in downtown Allentown, plans to open a women’s fashion store adjacent to assembly88 later this year at 542 Hamilton St.




Napoli is still finalizing what women’s clothing lines will be offered, but it notes that some of assembly88’s brands, including Patagonia, Barbour, Vuori and Vans, also have women’s lines and will be moving to the women’s store. .

“You’re going to see some of that, but we’re also going to include some new women-only brands,” Napoli said. “On the women’s side, I also want to get into other accessory brands and maybe homeware.”

Napoli, a member of the Downtown Allentown Business Alliance and the Allentown Parking Authority Board, was nominated earlier this month by the Allentown City Council to fill the vacant seat left by current state Representative Josh Siegel.

With over 25 years of small business experience, he is thrilled to bring a fresh perspective to City Council.

“It’s my passion,” Napoli told 69 News after his appointment. “We have a very large and diverse small business community in Allentown, and I want to help be a part of representing those people.”

On Tuesday, Napoli also received the Community Partner Award from the Greater Lehigh Valley Chamber of Commerce.

The distinction is awarded to a successful and esteemed business/person who is well known for operating with integrity and who is a prominent supporter of the Chamber and its communities, mission and goals.



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