Farewell Rowena, Hello hanoiwildlotushotel!
Posted: Dec 04 2020
Wait a minute... farewell who? And we already know who hanoiwildlotushotel is! If you have been with us for a while you may know that hanoiwildlotushotel is the website/online store for Rowena, a brick and mortar store located in the stunningly unique shopping district of Whyte Avenue located in Edmonton, Canada.
Kathleen Rowena Cameron dressed up in her grandfathers military garb
Rowena's first business papers were signed in 1998 and by summer of 1999 it was in full swing at its Whyte Ave location. Named for the owners grandmother, Rowena has been a staple to the Edmonton alternative community for years and a pioneer in the Canadian pinup scene being the first to bring many brands to Canada such as Collectif, Hell Bunny (operating then under the label Misery), Liquor Brand, Pinup Girl Clothing, and Trashy Diva. Rowena would participate in community events like car shows, tattoo shows, and rockabilly/psychobilly shows with friends and family (when you have a small staff like we do, it really is family), as well as work creating a safe welcoming environment at our shop that would lead to many viewing it as a home away from home.
In 2012 we launched our website to bring our fashion and wares to a world wide audience which has lead us to meeting (digitally and in person!) amazing people from all over the world. While 'Rowena' wasn't available for a website name, 'hanoiwildlotushotel' was and we thought it was a great fit for what we were all about.
This past year has been an incredibly hard year for everyone - how could it not be with the COVID-19 pandemic effecting everyone across the globe? Like many, decisions have had to be made and with our lease coming up, as well as uncertainty for the future, the hard decision to close Rowena was made. hanoiwildlotushotel is here to stay, rest assured, but Rowena as we know it will be coming to an end at the end of the year.
What is the plan from here on out? We hope to have this transition be as easy as possible!
* Starting today our online store and brick and mortar are 40% off excluding new arrivals, Besame, and consignment (only in store). This applies to both Rowena and hanoiwildlotushotel.
* We anticipate our last day of business for Rowena to be December 28th; we request that all in store pick ups, and layaways, be collected by this date at the latest. If you haven't been able to, not a problem though, as we will contact you to make alternative arrangements.
* Have a gift card to use? Fantastic! Online ones obviously will not be effected at all by the closure of Rowena but the ones in store will be since they cannot be used online. We will have a record of all gift cards and their details to cross reference with if you are unable to come in and use your card before the 28th - just send us an email and we can get things sorted out for you.
We are incredibly saddened, but also excited, over this change. Rowena has been a part of so many peoples lives, and we have truly loved the friendships we have created and fostered with the amazing people who have walked through our doors. We want to keep that community going so we have created The hanoiwildlotushotel Studio as a social space to be able to share, engage, and continue with the feeling the shop has created - we hope to see you there.
Thank you. Thank you all for your support for the last 22 years, thank you for your continued support as we shift gears, thank you for sticking with us as we move to a completely online format.
With love from the staff at Rowena/hanoiwildlotushotel