The location could not be more perfect, with the open and breezy shop reflecting a traditional Cayman shack – just the way Luigi wants it. It welcomes locals and visitors alike to come and hang out while Luigi regales them with the stories behind his creations.
Although he says there might have been quicker and easier ways to go about building his brand, Luigi wanted to create something real that was of Cayman, not just a slogan on a t-shirt that he could sell to tourists. The Swanky Shack certainly reflects this, with the open door hospitality that made Cayman the popular tourist destination it is today, along with a wide range of local products, from the clothing to Seven Fathoms Rum, which is distilled right next door.
Luigi even makes a point of playing local music in the shack, and has plans to include demonstrations of local traditions like silver thatch rope making, or even how local treats like peppermint candies are made.
For Luigi the location could not have been more perfect, as he recalls that it was after hurricane Ivan, seeing the sense of community among the people who gathered at Hammerheads, where he was truly inspired to do something that would help build a sense of community in Cayman.
Over the years Luigi has extended his range of clothing and it now includes not only men’s and ladies’ t-shirts but also swimsuits and other clothing items. He is also looking to extend the custom clothing side of the business, which will enable him to create unique items of clothing for groups visiting the Cayman Islands with a short turnaround time, thereby creating something that will serve as a special reminder of time spent on the island.
The One 345 brand has always had a very close connection to the community as well, whether through involvement in fundraising initiatives for charitable organisations or organising events that bring the community together. Although Luigi’s brand may have grown up somewhat now that he has his first store, he says that if anything the community involvement of One 345 will only grow from here on in.
For those who have not dropped in on Luigi yet, the Swanky Shack will be having its grand opening event on Saturday 10 December from 5pm. Knowing Luigi, this will be an event not to miss. WH
For more information on One 345 and the Swanky Shack, visit onetreefourfive.com