Small Business Spotlight: ambassador: NYC

By: Heather Ducharme

Small businesses are an integral part of the Lower Manhattan community. In anticipation of Small Business Saturday (Nov 24), we’re introducing you to a local Lower Manhattan business on our new Instagram TV series “Small Business Spotlight” and on our blog every week.

Toma Kawanishi is the owner of ambassador: nyc, a boutique that brings cutting-edge Japanese fashion to NYC and allows Toma to act as an ”ambassador” for some of his favorite Japanese designers.

Originally from Tokyo, Toma had a vision of opening a boutique in New York City with his best friend. Flash forward to today, their dream has become a reality here in Lower Manhattan. The best in Japanese apparel, jewelry and footwear can be found at their chic store at 49 Warren Street.

Toma knows firsthand that running a business, especially a clothing shop in the city is no easy venture. “Just to do a fashion boutique is not enough to keep business going in New York,” he explains. “It’s all about the concept. To do business in New York, you need a great concept and a unique idea to keep the business running.”

ambassador: nyc stands out because it only carries Japanese designers.

After being in the fashion industry for six years, Toma believes that designers from his country are unlike any other. “Japanese designers are known for being not only creative but they focus on detail.” Some of the prominent designers available in the store include Fashionese, 9494, and SToL.

Whether you are looking for a new head turning ensemble or bold, original footwear that helps you put your best foot forward, ambassador nyc has what you need to look runway ready.

Miss last week’s spotlight? Explore underrated wines and lavish spirits with Pure Liquid Wine & Spirits, and get ready for next week when we uncover fine art at Philip Williams Posters.

And now that you’ve discovered some Lower Manhattan gems, you can shop at them! The Downtown Alliance has launched the “Shop Small in Lower Manhattan Sweepstakes”. Nominate your favorite Lower Manhattan small business and be entered to win up to 5 gift cards valued at $500.