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RED BANK: JEWELER MOVING TO BROAD STREET

The facade of 73 Broad will be rebranded for Leonardo Jewelers when the business relocates to the space later this year. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

Betting big on the central business district, a longtime Red Bank jeweler plans to relocate to one of Broad Street’s most prominent buildings, redbankgreen has learned.

Leonardo Jewelers manager Paul Monteiro and owner Leo Zeik in the store’s current showroom on East Front Street. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

Leonardo Jewelers will move its showroom to 73 Broad Street, the distinctive 1920 structure known as the Whitfield Building, which sits facing west down Monmouth Street.

The family-owned jewelry business has been at 35 East Front Street for the past 35 years. But with the move, it will gain visibility, parking and, critically, floor area, said owner Leo Zeik.

That makes the high-end Swiss watchmaker Rolex happy, he said. Leonardo is the only jeweler in Monmouth County authorized by Rolex to sell its brand, just as the Leonardo Jewelers in Metuchen is the only one in Middlesex County. The watchmaker now requires retailers to devote 1,000 square feet to the brand, or lose the connection, he said.

“We’re keeping up with Rolex’s times and moving to the center of town,” Zeik said earlier this month. “We’ve been very successful here, but nothing in the immediate area was conducive to what we wanted to build.”

Though its present location is “off the beaten path, we’ve been able to succeed by becoming a destination store,” said Paul Monteiro, who has managed the shop for 29 years. Grandchildren of Leonardo’s earliest customers now shop there, buying gifts for their own children, he said.

Jay Herman, a principal in Downtown Investors, which owns the building, calls the location “the corner of Main and Main.” The space was vacated by a spa called Soul Focus, in late 2023.

With dedicated, free parking on Linden Place, behind the new address, and a bold presence in the heart of town, “now we’ll be able to reach a whole new audience,” Monteiro said.

The new store is expected to open by October.

Zeik co-owns the two Leonardo Jewelers shops with his sisters, Ivette Zeik Fernicola and Vivian Zeik Lund. The trio’s late father, Leonardo Zeik, a Lebanon native who emigrated to the United States via Cuba, launched the business in Elizabeth in 1964.

The siblings also own the building at 35 East Front Street, which they expect to lease to a new retail tenant, Zeik said.

Woodhouse Day Spa, which occupies the basement level of 73 Broad, plans to reopen next Thursday, according to an email sent to clients Wednesday.

The spa was closed by flooding related to interior construction for Leonardo March 18, when a worker accidentally broke a sprinkler head, triggering water flow, Herman said.

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