Meet The 88-12 months-previous Cobbler Who Rescues The Designer Stilettos Of Beverly Hills’ Elite
BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. (Reuters) – Arturo Azinian plucked a pair of Chanel pumps from a field full of footwear, unfazed by the leather-based peeling off the interlocking Cs on the toes or the tarnished metallic heels.
“These have loads of miles on them, however they are going to be like new, for about $70,” mentioned Azinian, an 88-12 months-old Beverly Hills cobbler famous for saving the fancy footwear of the elite within the ritzy 90210 zip code.
Just steps from boutique-lined Rodeo Drive sits the decidedly unglamorous Arturo’s Shoe Fixx, where the Argentine immigrant toils for 13 hours a day in a warren of whirring machines and footwear stacked to the ceiling.
A pair of males’s Salvatore Ferragamo caramel lace-ups awaits repair, whereas brand new patent leather-based Jimmy Choos are getting some rubber reinforcements on the bottom to forestall slipping and put on-and-tear.
While dealing with sneakers price a whole bunch and hundreds of dollars, Azinian is completely clueless about the well-known people to whom they belong.
“Lately, I needed to go to the house of an actress,” Azinian stated.
“It was Jennifer Aniston,” chimed in grandson Ari Libaridian.
“She gave me shoes to restore, but she also wished to talk to me,” mentioned Azinian.
Italian style designer Donatella Versace as soon as got here in with a bunch of sandals, after which later sent a limousine to have Azinian taken to her lodge. Actress Nicole Kidman additionally requested a house call.
Arturo Azinian works in his shoe restore shop in Beverly Hills, California April 24, 2015. Azinian is an 88-yr-outdated Beverly Hills cobbler famous for saving the fancy footwear of the elite in the ritzy 90210 zip code. REUTERS/Mario Anzouni
Most actors, studio executives and Hollywood producers send their assistants to the store, though the likes of Orlando Bloom and Jodie Foster have come themselves. The designer retailers and upscale malls down the road typically tell prospects to take their intractable shoe and handbag issues to Arturo’s for a fix.
Asked for particulars about his encounters with celebrities, the unassuming Azinian laughed and mentioned, “I do not remember a factor. I hardly remember my title!”
77 YEARS IN Footwear
Azinian did not select the profession, it was chosen for him, at the age of 11, when his father took him to apprentice with shoemakers in Buenos Aires.
He and his late spouse came to work in Los Angeles virtually 60 years ago and repaired shoes for department shops earlier than setting up the Beverly Hills store in 1988.
Ronny Gross ferragamo red purse has been a loyal buyer since then and always brings in her crimson-soled Christian Louboutins, like a pair of thigh-high black boots on a recent visit.
“After you wear them a number of times, the pink comes off and they put this rubber factor on it and it simply stays higher,” stated Gross. “I do it with each Louboutin.”
An exterior of Arturo’s shoe restore store in Beverly Hills, California. REUTERS/Mario Anzouni
Within the back, where Azinian prefers to work, he has a couple of employees who have been with him for more than a decade. And when he needs help, he turns to the skilled craftsmen among immigrants from Latin America.
Customers often ask him to come out for a chat. He charms the women with flirtatious talk about dancing tango, and lightens the mood together with his wry sense of humor.
“On the age of 88, he’s a bit bit annoying, but he’s the guts and soul of the shop and other people love to see him,” stated Libaridian, the only grandchild who has joined the enterprise.
Libaridian, 38, stated he learns from his grandfather about being patient with the client and using humor to get through the day, although he believes the customers 60 years ago weren’t as demanding as they are actually.
There is no such thing as a level talking to Azinian about retirement or what is going to happen to the business when he leaves. He’ll stay so long as “the boss” (his grandson) will have him.