For Books+Books+Bikes+LEBO, longtime bookseller (and publisher/film producer) Mitchell Kaplan is partnering with the indie bike store across the street from his flagship Books & Books in Coral Gables, Fl., No Boundaries Sport. The 10,000 sq. ft. bookstore/outdoor lifestyle shop/gallery opened late last month in Miami's Wynwood neighborhood and, according to Kaplan, the location marks his first “analog” shop, since it features no digital items.
Acclaimed graffiti artist David “LEBO” Le Batard painted the façade of the store and has a gallery inside it, where he is selling unframed prints. The pairing with Batard makes sense, according to Kaplan, since Wynwood--which is full of art galleries and clothing stories--is an artsy area similar to New York City’s Soho.
The store is now the fifth South Florida one that Kaplan owns. (Books & Books also has four affiliates, ranging from Key West to Westhampton Beach, N.Y.) Because Books+Books+Bikes+LEBO has only a one-year lease, Kaplan told PW that “if the concept works, we’ll just move it someplace else.”
Not wanting to take sales from any of Books & Books’s other locations, the store is stocking remainders exclusive to it, along with vintage vinyl records, which are displayed in milk crates. Kaplan plans to add typewriters and reconditioned cameras. While most other Books & Books locations fuse books and cafés, Kaplan wanted to experiment by juxtaposing books, bikes, running gear, and colorful art in the same space.
The store's books, which fill wooden bookcases along its walls and sit on display tables, remain its main feature. Books+Books+Bikes+LEBO carries approximately 2,000 discount hardcovers, paperbacks, and coffee table tomes.
The grand opening of Books+Books+Bikes+LEBO will take place on Tuesday, June 28, with a DJ and an open-mic reading by VONA/Voices, a writing workshop for people of color co-founded by author Junot Diaz.