Bizwatch: Asian Village Antiques
Vail, CO, Colorado
Business name: Asian Village
Date opened: September 2001
Owners: Susan Bristol and UnChu Ring
Contact Info: We’re in the Riverwalk in Edwards, on the corner between Starbucks and The Bookworm. Open daily 10 a.m. ” 6 p.m. and Sundays 11a.m. ” 5 p.m. Phone, 926-6188, or on line at http://www.asianvillageantiques.com
What goods or services do you provide? A shopping adventure and lifestyle, with fine authenticated antique Chinese furniture and accessories, individually selected contemporary American artwork, one-of-a-kind jewelry from seven different designers, clothing for the well-traveled woman and imaginative gifts.
UnChu and Susan delight in offering personal shopping assistance to each visitor. We often visit a customer’s home with a selection of possibilities, furniture and accessories. We often work on a “special order” basis for antiques, jewelry, clothing and gifts.
What strategy do you use to differentiate your business from your competition? Each piece of Asian Village’s ever-changing collection of authentic Chinese antiques is conserved in China before it comes to us. The beautiful patinas and signs of use are living proof that our pieces have been cherished by generations. They’re just waiting to become part of the lives of families here.
Susan and UnChu hand pick each item in the store, reflecting their taste and belief that life is best enjoyed with a mix of interests and influences.
We believe we offer a unique experience to each person who visits our store. Our insistence on authenticity and integrity is coupled with a simple enjoyment of life. We aim to make people happy that they decided to come visit.
What philosophy do you follow in dealing with your customers? What can your customers expect from you? Our customers, new and returning, can expect friendship, intelligent conversation, and complete satisfaction in their dealings with Asian Village.
Tell us a little about your background, education and experience: Susan is the antique, UnChu the Asian! A Michigan transplant, Susan came to Vail 38 years ago, a graduate of Connecticut College who majored in German and an architectural writer who worked after college with Gropius.
UnChu is a business major from University of Colorado, via Des Moines and Korea. Previous to beginning the business together, they had worked together in the fields of clothing and jewelry for 16 years. Both UnChu and Susan are mothers of grown children, holding the belief that family is the most important thing in their lives.
What is the most humorous thing that has happened at your business since you opened? On our first trip to China, entirely on our own and speaking no Chinese, we met UnChu’s brother and business associates in Beijing only to discover that we had been mispronouncing the Chinese words for “Thank You.” All through China they had been smiling and saying “crazy crazy” instead.
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