While driving over to Liberty Park Emporium the other day, to meet with shop owner Monica Zoltanski and take a couple pictures for this profile, ideas for the articles title seemed to be ricocheting around my head like pinballs against a set of new bumpers. However, by the time I pulled into the stores parking lot, I had pretty much settled on the moniker “CHICK MAGNET” around which to build the profile.
Last November, when Lyn and I dropped by Liberty Park Emporium for their grand opening celebration, I had barely eased past the front door before I began to sense the estrogen. The shop, described by Monica as a mix of selected antiques, home décor, trendy accessories and unusual gifts, was all of that. LPE was a terrific little shop, visually enticing, with lavish displays and stylish hand picked merchandise. However, I couldn’t help but feel like the cases, shelves and racks all seemed to be sending out a furtive whisper, “come on in girls”.
Almost a year later, all I can say is “hey guys, pull up a comfortable chair and relax”. It seems that shop owner Monica Zoltanski has been busy weaving a little magic. I wouldn’t call the place a man-cave, there’s still plenty for the ladies to salivate over, but you’re also going to find enough old wood, brass and patina to bring on a smile. I found a few old cameras, crates, vintage sporting goods, industrial objects, old bottles, watches and antique furniture among what has become a diverse inventory.
Along with antiques & collectibles, the shop also offers a nice selection of local art. Of particular interest were a small LeConte Stewart painting, a pair of Mahonri Young brass “Elephant” bookends, and a collection of particularly clever robots created from old gages and industrial odds and ends by Salt Lake artist Billy Wells.
Evolution, seems like an apt description. Liberty Park Emporium has evolved into a very nice, well rounded upscale shop. If “survival of the fittest” is any gauge of endurance, It looks like we’ll be shopping at LPE for a good long time. Stop by and see this great shop again, for the very first time.
LIBERTY PARK EMPORIUM is located at 1465 So. 700 E., in SLC. Open Tues. through Sat. 11:00 to 6:00. Happy hunting!