Monmouth Street will soon welcome a boutique for young girls, specializing in dresses and gowns for special occasions. (Photo by Danielle Tepper. Click to enlarge)


Two new businesses plan to call Red Bank home in coming months: a dress shop for teens-and-unders called Angel’s Gowns, and Pure Barre, a fitness club.

Each will take over a space that’s been vacant for more than half a decade.


The storefront at 71 Monmouth Street, next door to David Levin Salon, will soon be filled with gowns specially made for all the milestones in a young girl’s life.

Owner Maria Paganoni, a fashion designer, moved to Red Bank three years ago from Mexico, where she worked for a clothing company that catered to little girls. She decided to put that passion to work here.

“I think it is necessary to have something like this,” said Paganoni. “There is not anything around the area like this.”

Salon Concrete, which plans to reopen at 123-127 Broad Street next week, will share the building with Pure Barre. (Click to enlarge)

Angel’s Gowns, a clothing boutique offering a shopping experience that includes jewelry and accessories, will open by the end of the month, said Paganoni, offering dresses for First Communions, Quinceaneras (the Spanish version of a Sweet 16, celebrated on the fifteenth birthday) and Sweet 16s. Christening gowns will also be available, and Paganoni said she hopes to add prom dresses to the collection in the future.

“The good thing is that it is going to fit all budgets,” she said. “The gowns will be from $40 to $200, so not for just one kind of family.”

Minor renovations are about to start, which Paganoni said will include installing hardwood floors, painting, and new signage. She is also awaiting the arrival of some last-minute gowns being shipped from Spain and Mexico.

As a grandmother, Paganoni said she is looking forward to the experience of helping all the young ladies find the perfect dress for their special occasion. “I’m going to enjoy it a lot,” she said. “It is going to be beautiful.”

The space, longtime home of retailer Faith’s Aura, has been vacant since 2008, shortly after the death of shop owner Steven Montanino.


Pure Barre, a fitness chain that employs isometric movements on a ballet barre, plans to jeté into Red Bank late this spring. The method, founded by professional dancer Carrie Rezabek Dorr and launched as a national franchise in 2009, allows for focused work on problem body areas while accompanying music creates the mentally soothing atmosphere similar to that of yoga or meditation.

Melanie Colman of Fair Haven, who will own the shop with Molly D’Alessio of Fanwood, was first introduced to the concept in 2010, and has been a teacher for the past two years.

“Pure Barre is a compilation of yoga, ballet, and Pilates, which sets it apart,” said Colman. “It’s a perfected technique with a real skill and method behind it.”

Colman noted that even though the outlet is part of a franchise, the two women will do all that they can to keep a local feel to it.

“Our opening party will source everything from downtown, we got our hand weights from Ocean Fitness in Eatontown, so we’re keeping it pretty back-to-basics,” she said. “Even though it’s part of a bigger umbrella, it’ll be embedded in its own environment. And I think it’s different from the fitness places currently here. It’s really fast-paced and fun.”

Pure Barre will operate seven days a week with scheduled classes. For more information, call (732) 542-7873 or email.

In taking over half a free-standing building long occupied by Surray Luggage, Pure Barre will join Salon Concrete, which is scheduled to open at that location after many years on the second floor at 15 Broad Street. The building, at 123-127 Broad, has been vacant almost six years.