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04/30/2021

Free Market makes LA debut with shop-in-shop format

Marianne Wilson
Editor-in-Chief
Marianne Wilson profile picture

A concept that features a rotating curation of mostly independent brands, restaurants, cultural installations and services under one roof has opened for business in Los Angeles.

Free Market has opened its second location, as one of the anchor tenants at Runway, the retail center at Playa Vista, in West Los Angeles. The concept, which has a shop-in-shop format, made its debut in 2019, at the Dairy Block in Denver.

Designed by LA-based architects Design, Bitches, the new, 21,000-sq.-ft. Free Market was created to serve as a hub for high-end pop-up and permanent shops curated to appeal to digitally savvy shoppers. The space features nine retailers (encompassing furniture, art, gifts fashion), two restaurant experiences, a “world-class bar,” a classroom and event space. 

“We’ve pulled some of our favorite restaurant groups together with forward-thinking brands, merchants and services to rethink the traditional department store as a collection of things that are bought, not just sold, all while offering something fresh and new for the Los Angeles community to discover,” said Raan Parton, who co-founded Free Market along with Raan Parton and Lindsay Parton. 

The opening lineup for Runway is below.
 
Alchemy Works: A coastal California retail, gallery, and event space concept launched in 2013 by Raan and Lindsay Parton;

County Line Florals: Actress Abigail Spencer’s artfully curated retail experience that offers bouquets, branches and plants;

Heyday: The one-stop skincare shop where knowledgeable experts, customized facials, and powerful products come together to help customers put their best face forward;

Studio C by C Magazine: C Magazine’s store that celebrates the very best in Californian design and creativity;

Natural Rough: The handmade clothing retailer known for its use of natural and sustainable fabrics;

Teressa Foglia: Designer of handmade, bespoke hats;

Period Correct: Maker of automotive motorsports vintage apparel;

Urbanic Paper Boutique: The LA-based curated stationery boutique featuring unique and inspired greeting cards, gifts, home goods, office supplies, toys, books, and candles;

Please Do Not Enter: A one-of-a-kind progressive luxury retail and exhibition space; and

Spread Love Project: NYC-based artist Nicholas Konert’s art installation designed to foster love and communication without restriction, reason or reward.

The food and restaurant lineup includes Joliet Café and Bar, a brand new concept from Ben Adams and Alex Meza, bar owners behind Hollywood’s Know Where Bar, along with Mexican eatery Loqui and Jeni’s Spendid Ice Cream.

Runway, the reimagined retail center at Playa Center, is owned by Invesco Real Estate and managed by DJm, which has been upgrading the property since 2018.