After a long winter, North Hills patrons are ready for warmer weather. From families making summer vacation plans to college students revving up for spring break, Raleighites are about to come down with a serious case of spring fever. Enter Cariloha, a shop new to North Hills in 2016 that features island-inspired bedding, bath, apparel, and accessories. The staple of the store is Cariloha Bamboo, a material native to the Caribbean and the foundation of all Cariloha products.
To celebrate the upcoming beach season, North Hills Live spoke with Guy White, who owns North Hills’ Cariloha location with his wife, Shannon. Guy, a native Australian, was happy to tell us about the benefits of natural luxury bamboo products and how North Hills is like island living without the beach.
North Hills Live: What is the story behind the name Cariloha, and how does the name represent your brand and its products?
Guy White: Driven by a comfort, health, and eco-conscious lifestyle, Cariloha joins the style of the Caribbean with the spirit of Aloha to provide the best in natural luxury. Therefore, the name is a blend of “Caribbean” and “aloha”.
Cariloha, the brand, was born in the islands back in 2007; the brand has grown to become the only multi-store retailer in the world to provide an entire store experience that’s completely merchandised with products made from eco-friendly viscose from bamboo.
NHL: Why do you feel that North Hills is a good fit for a Cariloha retail location?
GW: Shannon and I spent three years researching and visiting Cariloha stores from D.C. to South Carolina. We had narrowed it down to three locations in Raleigh, yet we were always drawn back to North Hills.
North Hills is not a mall and it’s not a shopping center. It’s a multi-use urban location where you can shop, dine, live, stay, attend a free concert, go bowling … the list goes on. North Hills is almost like island living without the beach, so it fits the Cariloha brand perfectly.
NHL: What’s been your experience as first-time store owners?
GW: We have learned that for the customer to understand and fall in love with your product, you too have to truly love your own product. Customers pick up on that authenticity. We have been customers ourselves since 2010, when we fell in love with Cariloha Bamboo while cruising the Caribbean with our family. We love the look and feel of all of the products. When we say we sleep on our sheets, or dry off using our towels, we truly mean it. Our products are the best!
NHL: What are some of the top items your customers are choosing to complement their island-inspired lifestyles? Any trends you’re seeing?
GW: We are seeing the interest in bamboo materials as a trend on the rise. Bamboo is softer and three degrees cooler than cotton, wicks away moisture, is highly breathable, and does not absorb odor. Aside from our best-selling sheets and towels, our customers are quickly learning the benefits of bamboo in fitness gear and everyday wear. We are constantly updating our colors and styles to keep them fresh and current.
NHL: How can customers incorporate Cariloha products into their spring/summer purchases?
GW: With our new line of colors and shirt styles coming available for spring and summer, we have all sorts of options for everyday wear needs. We have also expanded our bedding line to offer the complete bedding experience. We now offer bamboo-infused mattresses, pillows, sheets (of course), and duvet covers. And because bamboo is thermal regulating, our products will keep your body temperature just right, no matter the season.
NHL: What’s your favorite thing about your retail location in North Hills?
GW: Being located right next door to busy stores like Total Wine and Sur la Table, we enjoy the daily exposure that allows us to help educate our customers on the benefits of our eco-friendly products. We love to chat with our customers, and we have developed great lifetime friendships in the process. If you haven’t already figured it out, we love North Hills and the benefits it provides as first-time store owners. We look forward to seeing new faces in our store, so stop by and say hello, g’day, aloha, or better yet Cari-LOHA!