Luxury retailer RH Jacksonville in downtown St. Johns opens


RH Jacksonville, the luxury home furnishings store that opens Friday in downtown St. Johns, is dazzling the moment you walk through the front doors.

Its “wow factor” ranges from its namesake cheeseburger served at its rooftop restaurant to the elegant handcrafted chandeliers bathing the first-floor lobby in a warm, welcoming glow.

The three-level store has a roof garden with comfortable sofas and outdoor chairs as well as a view of the city center. Inside, individual galleries showcase classic and modern furniture and decorations, including handcrafted artwork from glass artist Allison Berger and others.

RH Jacksonville, The Gallery at Town Center – its official name – at 4831 Village Shops Way is designed to be a destination – an elegant and memorable destination.

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Whether it’s for a fresh ingredient-inspired breakfast, lunch, brunch or dinner at the restaurant, a relaxing glass of wine in the rooftop garden or serious shopping in the galleries, the atmosphere is welcoming.

RH Jacksonville, a luxury home furnishings store with a rooftop restaurant, is in the final stages of preparations before Friday's opening at St. Johns Town Center in Jacksonville.

Two decades after Jacksonville buyers said they wanted catering equipment in the newly opened downtown St. Johns, their wish came true.

But let’s be clear. This is not a hardware store. And it’s not your father’s Restoration Hardware anymore either.

It is HR – a destination made to be experienced. Any furniture store can sell a sofa. RH sells a lifestyle.

Located in the southeast corner of the sprawling mall, RH Jacksonville spans 70,000 square feet of indoor and outdoor space. It includes the rooftop restaurant and park, wine bar, RH interior design studio and studio, RH interiors, RH Modern and RH Outdoor.

The store is unlike any other downtown.

This difference is evident on the outside and inside. The building is “conceptualized as a transparent and contemporary structure”. It has retractable glass walls to let in natural light and fresh air.

RH Jacksonville's rooftop restaurant is a garden getaway with a skylight under an atrium with retractable glass walls, chandeliers, and heirloom olive trees.  A large fountain serves as the centerpiece of the dining room.

The exterior of the building has an anthracite gray Venetian plaster. On levels 1 and 2, the gallery has an expanse of glass and French doors. They open onto lush garden courtyards, terraces and a progression of imposing Zahidi date palms.

Live plants, such as giant banana trees, as well as trickling fountains, can be found throughout the store to create a sense of serenity.

RH Jacksonville reflects the vision of the company’s President and CEO, Gary Friedman, whose philosophy is to “blur the lines between residential and retail, interior and exterior, home and hospitality. “.

The target audience is the luxury shopper, but Friedman emphasized that hospitality is at the heart of the HR brand.

Guests can begin their HR experience with a glass of wine, signature bellini, cup of coffee, or espresso, then explore levels one and two before dining in the restaurant.

RH Jacksonville, a luxury home furnishings store with a rooftop restaurant is in the final stages of preparations before it opens next Friday at Jacksonville's St. Johns Town Center.

Galleries showcase luxury goods, works of art

Level 1: HR interiors. Shoppers enter through a 25-foot threshold of glass and steel pocket doors, then make their way to the gallery’s central lobby, which has 14-foot ceilings and chandeliers providing soft lighting.

The gallery showcases RH’s best-known furniture and decor, such as its Cloud Sofa. Six to eight feet long and super soft, the Cloud Sofa can cost up to nearly $ 10,000. It became popular in TikTok videos. Architectural summary reports that the sofa is a favorite of celebrities, including Kendell Jenner and Kerry Washington.

A large double floating staircase spanning nearly 40 feet leads to the upper floors. (Elevators are also available.)

Natural light streams in from a huge skylight three stories above. Additionally, the hand-blown Serenella chandeliers hang 54 feet above the head to showcase a composition of antique gilded mirrors cascading down the stairwell to create endless reflection and further illuminate the path.

Level two: RH Modern and RH Interior Design Firm & Atelier. It focuses on more modern furniture, textiles, lighting and decoration. Contemporary art from the GENERAL PUBLIC for the RH Collection presents nearly 400 works by renowned artists from around the world.

A long-time art collector and actress, Portia de Rossi founded GENERAL PUBLIC with the aim of bringing good art to more people. His company uses “revolutionary 3D technology” to achieve this by capturing every nuance of brush, texture and technique to authentically reveal the hand of the artist.

RH Jacksonville is one of the first design galleries to preview Berger’s lighting collection. Its glassware includes chandeliers and wall sconces.

RH Interior Design Firm & Atelier is a 5,000 square foot interactive studio offering professional design services. There’s also the RH Rug Showroom and specialty galleries for luxury window treatments, bed and bath linens, and bath hardware.

Rooftop restaurant offers an ingredient-based menu

Level three: restaurant. Probably a destination of choice for more than a few visitors and buyers of RH Jacksonville, it is dedicated to the rooftop restaurant with its adjoining park, wine bar and RH Outdoor.

The restaurant is inspired by the great classical gardens of Europe. There is a garden escape with a skylight under an atrium with retractable glass walls, chandeliers and heritage olive trees. A large fountain serves as the centerpiece of the dining room.

The park will have RH Outdoor lounge spaces defined by “a layered composition” of sculpted conifers, shade canopies and water runoff.

Among the top offerings at the rooftop restaurant at RH Lifestyle is the Lobster Roll with pulled butter, mayonnaise and Old Bay seasonings.

The menu will be guided by fresh ingredients.

Some of the most popular items include the Lobster Roll ($ 30) with melted butter, mayonnaise, and Old Bay seasoning. The lobster meat is stacked and overflowing from the bun.

The RH Burger ($ 20) is also popular with tangy American cheese, pickles, onions, and Dijonaise with the option to add avocado or thick pork belly bacon for an additional fee.

The menu also offers sharing platters, salads and entrees such as Burrata with oven-roasted tomatoes and charred sourdough, minced vegetables with baby leaves and pecans, roasted chicken with garlic and mashed potatoes in olive oil. There will also be “high takes” on classics such as rib eye steak and grilled cheese with truffles.

Entrance prices vary from $ 20 to $ 59 depending on the dish.

The rooftop restaurant menu also includes minced vegetables with baby greens, pecans, and cider vinaigrette.

The Wine Bar offers a “carefully curated” selection of vintages and champagne selections from around the world. There will be 40 wines by the glass as well as limited production offerings from some of Napa Valley’s respected little wineries.

The RH Restaurant expands the upscale dining options downtown, which already include The Capital Grille, J. Alexander’s, Cantina Laredo, Bazille in Nordstrom, and Prati Italia in nearby downtown markets.

Two decades in preparation

In 2000, when the downtown St. Johns project was announced, The Times-Union asked its readers what stores and restaurants they wanted to see in Jacksonville’s new shopping destination.

Among their requests was Restoration Hardware. In 2003, two years before the downtown opening, Restoration Hardware was on the list of planned stores. On Friday, nearly two decades later, RH Jacksonville is finally a reality.

RH Jacksonville will be open daily from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Joshua B. Speller