Saintwoods makes streetwear and merch, sure, but the duo also runs a couple of bars in Apt. 200. While they hesitate to label it a “concept bar,” the idea behind Apt. 200 is straightforward enough: Gannage and Macklovitch wanted to capture the feel of a laid back house party and put it in an elevated bar space. They first opened in Montreal, but the boys quickly expanded their empire to Toronto, and when we caught up with them on a snowy day in March, they had just flown in from a series of business meetings in Los Angeles. Then there’s the nightclub, École Privée, and their restaurant, SUWU. As de facto booking agents for all of these venues, Saintwoods invited then-emergent acts like Post Malone, PARTYNEXTDOOR, Tory Lanez and Daniel Caesar to play. With a proven taste level and track record of successful events and experiences, brands eventually took notice of the duo’s savvy, and Saintwoods has gone on to consult for blue chip brands like Hennessy as well as collaborate with Nike.
Macklovitch says that the core of the Saintwoods brand is their ability to identify the importance of offering “more than just a T-shirt.” Saintwoods merch was originally offered as a souvenir, a keepsake to take home from a wild party at Apt. 200 or École Privée. Nowadays, says Macklovitch, the brand has fans in Paris and Hong Kong who might not be able to visit the bars, or even Montreal, but the duo hope to bring those experiences to them in the future. “Building a community,” says Macklovitch, “wherever we are is definitely important.”
While it may sound like they’re constantly moving at light-speed between all of these projects, Macklovitch’s advice to aspiring entrepreneurs is pragmatic and simple: “Answer your emails. Send emails if you get asked.”
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