St. Louisans in need of a little retail therapy will soon have another place to shop when Iowa-based Von Maur Department Stores, one of the nation’s oldest department store chains, opens its first store in Missouri this month. The two-level, 130,000-square-foot store, in The Meadows at Lake Saint Louis, debuts Sept. 18 with some 250 sales associates.

    Family-owned, Von Maur is known for its wide selection of brand-name merchandise and its shopper-friendly design and customer service. “Our personalized service really sets us apart—we offer free basic alterations, gift wrapping and shipping,” says advertising manager Amy Davis. “Along with top brands like Polo Ralph Lauren, Burberry, Kenneth Cole, Austin Reed, Tommy Bahama and Joseph Abboud, we also feature specialty vendors you wouldn’t ordinarily find in a department store, such as Nic + Zoe.”

    Davis also emphasizes Von Maur’s merchandising philosophy, which includes an emphasis on the upscale shopping environment. “In addition to open, airy spaces and comfortable seating areas, we also have a constant flow of new products and merchandise,” she says. Davis says customers are likely to find some things new on the floor every time they visit.

    “The Meadows at Lake St. Louis, located in one of the region’s fastest growing areas, represents a significant opportunity for us, so we’re excited to be entering into a partnership with them,” Davis says. “It’s a prime shopping destination, and we look forward to bringing our long-standing commitment to quality, style, selection and service to the residents of St. Louis and its surrounding communities.” The Meadows, which features more than 30 shops, specialty boutiques and restaurants, was developed by Davis Street Land Co., which also owns Plaza Frontenac.

    Von Maur store manager Lyndsey Patton is looking forward to the challenge of opening a new store in a tough retail environment. “Von Maur has a long history of excellence and measured, strategic growth, so we’re confident about expanding into the St. Louis market,” she says. “We’ve always stayed true to our business model: great products, a beautiful environment and associates who provide outstanding service. It’s worked for us in the past, and we have every confidence we’ll be able to successfully transfer and adapt that culture to our new location.”

    The von Maur family opened its first store in 1872 in Davenport, Iowa. Today, the business has grown to a 25-store chain with locations in 10 states: Iowa, Missouri, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Michigan, Minnesota, Nebraska and Ohio. “The family’s involvement ensures the continuation of the company’s successful strategies and traditions,” Patton concludes.