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Levi's brand opens retail store in Castro Neighborhood

Nov '08
The Levi's brand opens its newest U.S. store in San Francisco's historic Castro neighborhood at 525 Castro Street. The Castro location is the brand's second owned-and-operated retail operation in its hometown city.

In celebration of its new home in the Castro, the Levi's brand is honored to sponsor the “People's Premiere” of Milk, the highly anticipated biopic about the life of gay-rights icon Harvey Milk. Inspired by the life of Harvey Milk, and in honor of the opening of Levi's new store in Milk's beloved Castro neighborhood, the Levi's brand and the Levi Strauss Foundation are also proud to be making cash grants to two nonprofit organizations with a presence in the Castro.

“It's a perfect fit,” said Mark Breitbard, Levi's Brand Retail President. “We have a unique relationship with the Castro neighborhood that goes back decades. As the Castro was being reborn in the 1960s and 1970s, Levi's jeans were an important part of the neighborhood uniform. Over the years we have also provided philanthropic support to numerous San Francisco and Castro neighborhood organizations that provide services to and advocacy for neighborhood residents.”

The Levi's Castro Store:
The Castro store's unique design concept reflects the character and history of the historic neighborhood. Design elements were developed to take into account the distinctive location and neighborhood demographic. Architects restored the store's exterior to reflect the neighborhood's history and the building's character. The materials and color palette selected by the Levi's store design team capture the original Victorian architecture and historic feel of the Castro.

Neighborhood inspired decorative elements including archival photographs of Levi's jeans worn by residents and visitors through decades of Castro history are used throughout the store interior.

"Magnet is a unique neighborhood institution that provides residents with critical health services and serves as a cultural and social gathering place for the community," said Merle Lawrence of the company's Corporate Affairs department. "Its focus on slowing the spread of HIV through on-site HIV testing, counseling and care referrals aligns with our company and foundation history of supporting HIV/AIDS prevention and advocacy efforts globally for more than 25 years."

Another grant for $50,000 will be awarded to the GLBT Historical Society to support a year-long temporary exhibit on the history of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community in Northern California at the corner of Castro and 18th streets.


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