The website reads, “coming soon,” revealing just how new Sole Lounge really is to Houston. This men’s clothing and shoe boutique originates from an unlikely source, someone who has been seen more as a wearer of shoes, specifically size 16 basketball sneakers, rather than a seller of them.
Tracy McGrady, former member of the Houston Rockets, along with younger brother Chance McGrady and a handful of friends, have opened a local store to give Houstonians access to exclusive brands like Plain Jane and Publish. These brands have previously only been offered online, says the younger McGrady.
In addition, the shop offers access to popular athletic shoe brands that the former Rocket is more than familiar with, such as Addias, Reebok, and Nike.
A sales associate told me their most popular items include products from Mostly Heard Rarely Seen, Marshall Artist, and Weekend Offender, but then he added, “everything is a big seller.”
Men searching for higher end casual and athletic clothing make up the majority of their customers, and the sporty atmosphere of the shop definitely draws them in. Athletic shoes and flat-bill hats from various leagues and conferences dot the walls, and the leather ottomans and exposed-brick details cater to Houstonians searching for a more lux shopping experience.
While the vibe inside is lux, the location is not. Nestled on the second floor of what seems to be a run-down strip center, the store that boasts exclusive brands seems out of place. When I was there (granted, it was a weekday morning), it was void of any customers and pretty silent, minus the two store employees and a TV playing the current World Cup soccer game. However, the sales associate was quick to point out that in the three weeks they have been open, they have found their busiest times to be the weekends. The takeaway: if you prefer a private shopping experience, go on Wednesday morning.
Having just opened at the end of May, Sole Lounge may be new, but the store is eager to make an impression on Houston. It regularly hosts deejays to enhance the shopping experience and seems to have accrued a solid base of satisfied customers in the short time it’s been open.
Soul Lounge is located on the corner of Richmond and Fountainview. It is open Monday through Thursday from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m., Friday and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., and Sunday from noon to 6 p.m.