A Victoria sneaker store offers customers a unique shopping experience.
Sole Priorities has thrived since opening in October 2020, owner Joe Saenz, 26, said. Part of that success is providing rare and hard-to-find sneakers, and the other part is providing a service that no other shoe store in town has, a fully functioning barber shop.
“Our first year went even better than expected,” Saenz said.
Sales were impressive, and Saenz said some customers would spend $ 1,500 to $ 2,000 at a time for multiple pairs of shoes when they passed through the store.
The shoes sold at Sole Priorities can be hard to find in retail stores, Saenz said, and they can get expensive. Saenz pointed to a row of sneakers on display and said each of them sold for at least $ 700.
“At the mall, these shoes all sell out instantly,” he said. “They’re almost impossible to get in retail stores, so that’s an alternative. “
In addition to the shelves and displays filled with colorful sneakers, the store has three barbers, one person who will braid the hair and two more barber chairs waiting to be filled, Saenz said.
The idea of combining a sneaker store and a barber isn’t original, but Saenz may be one of the first to bring the distinct combination to Carrefour.
As a teenager, Saenz often visited sneaker stores that have in-house barbers in big cities like Houston and Corpus Christi, he said. When he felt ready to open his own store, Saenz opened his floor to barbers to reflect the stores he visited as a child.
Much like handbags, sunglasses, and jewelry, the sneaker market is susceptible to counterfeit goods such as fake Air Jordans and Yeezys.
“With sneakers, it’s a big ‘fake’ industry,” Saenz said. “We do a lot to make sure everything is authenticated. “
Testing the authenticity of sneakers is a complex process that requires a lot of attention to details such as stitching inconsistencies, wrong colors, and the feel of the wrong shoe, but Saenz said there is now technology that sneaker enthusiasts can use them to help them ensure their the product is the real deal.
Saenz has loved sneakers since he was around 13 years old.
“Being younger, my mom wouldn’t buy me all the latest,” he said. “I had one or two a year, but I always kept up to date with the latest ones. It was something that always caught my attention, my interest.
Today, Saenz is able to get well over one or two pairs a year. The displays are full of new sneakers in a wide range of colors and styles, and Saenz often incorporates new products into his inventory.
Cody covers the pace of business for the lawyer. He can be reached at (361) 580-6504 or [email protected]