Once overflowing with stolen bikes, 927 Queen West lands a new tenant: jewellery boutique Rue Pigalle.
No-one tell Igor Kenk, but four years after the bike thief was arrested, his former base of operations on Queen Street West is now a boutique hawking costume jewellery and accessories.
Isabelle Fish takes a few seconds to stop laughing when asked about the building’s long-time former tenant. (“Igor!”) Vacant since the churrasqueira Inigo closed in December 2011 after less than a year there, 927 Queen West is the new home of Fish’s shop, Rue Pigalle.
“It’s a beautiful neighbourhood,” says Fish, whose boutique was once on the second floor of 104 Yorkville Ave. but now faces Trinity Bellwoods Park. ”I chose Queen West because I think that the clientele will understand the products better. My products are made from small, independent designers…there’re no brands there. In Yorkville, I think that the clients didn’t quite understand the concept.”
There’s much more to be said about how much Queen West has changed since 1995, when Kenk paid just $85,000 to buy the property and turn it into his notorious Bicycle Clinic. (He resold it in 2010 for nearly eight times that, and according to property records, when the narrow plot of land sold again on January 31, 2012, it was for $1,175,000.) But for now, there’s stuff to sell: Rue Pigalle opens today, Thursday, June 21. There will be Champagne.
Those eyeing one of Kenk’s old bicycles instead, meanwhile, will have to wait a while longer—Central Commerce Collegiate, the west-end school where thousands of the stolen bikes and bike parts ended up, won’t be having their sale of fixed-up bikes till the fall, principal Iwona Kurman told The Grid.