Rita Schwartz opened Upscale Furniture Consignment Gallery seven years ago in the midst of the greatest recession since 1929.
In 2009, more than 7,000 furniture stores had closed their doors across the country, yet Schwartz, against all odds, decided to open a furniture store with a twist: selling high end (and gently used) furnishings.
Hence the name: “Upscale Furniture Consignment Gallery,” in “Shoppes by the Falls,” an area that has become known as southwest Miami-Dade’s “Art District.”
Upon entering the Gallery, a visitor immediately realizes this is not the typical consignment shop as the eyes gaze on a varied assortment of all types of furniture of incredible quality, in classic, traditional and modern stylings.
Throughout the Gallery’s 6,000 square feet of space are additional hidden treasures including accessories to fit perfectly within any room of a home or office needing added décor touches.
Such a rare display of quality in upscale furnishings results because Schwartz personally reviews every item that comes into her store. When customers want to consign an item, she meticulously researches its background to make sure that each is presented exactly as advertised, reflecting an exquisite taste and knowledge of furniture as well as Schwartz’s experience in knowing the types of furniture that appeal to her customer base.
The Gallery inventory “is constantly changing as new pieces arrive daily,” said Schwartz. “That makes any trip to Upscale Furniture a new and exciting journey, discovering hidden gems among the newest arrivals.”
An important aspect of the Gallery: prices of most items have been reduced by 70 percent of their original cost, explained Schwartz, noting that “Not only are there bargains galore but the ‘upscale’ quality enhances every purchase.”
Constantly involved in the community, Schwartz has spent the past 20 years working to save the lives of animals, raising more than $1 million to fund local animal rescue groups.
As a well-known personality in Miami-Dade affairs, she is the cofounder of Pets’ Trust Miami, an initiative supported by 500,000 Miami voters, and she continues to generate public awareness of the plight of its stray cats and dogs while creating a hugely successful niche business that has appealed to thousands of customers in the market for outstanding buys in fine furniture.
“Where vintage and class meet, at prices that can’t be beat,” Schwartz says.
Upscale Furniture Consignment Gallery is located at 8845 SW 132 Street. For information, call 305-491-5651.