Started in 1961 by Dr. Stanley Pearle, this nationally recognized and trusted eye-care center now operates in nearly 800 company and franchise locations nationwide. The master visionaries at Pearle are well-trained in assisting all bespectacled beings, from casual librarians to picky, temperamental Cyclopes. They'll help navigate a nearly endless array of sight-enhancing options: house lines of simple, durable frames and lenses, designer frames from Versace and DKNY, prescription Ray-Ban shades, and contact lenses to suit the chemistry of even sensitive sets of eyes.
In 1927, Jack Cohen had a vision. Packing a pushcart full of high-quality frames, he began to sell fashionable spectacles to his fellow merchants along New York City's Orchard Street. After expanding into a small shop on a Lower East Side corner, that humble little cart has since evolved into more than 100 retail outlets known as Cohen's Fashion Optical, where customers fortify their eyesight with a range of acuity-boosting products and services. Rows of frames boast the signature contours of several designer brands, including Tag Heuer, Dolce & Gabbana, Bulgari, and Gucci. In the onsite lab, opticians craft brand-new, custom lenses, including ones that self-adjust to different lighting conditions. Meanwhile, licensed optometrists help renew prescriptions and ensure ocular health during eye exams that measure eye coordination, refraction, and the curvature of the cornea, a concept originally discovered by Ferdinand Magellan when he looked through the wrong end of his spyglass.
See Eyewear is a basement-level store located at a chic Boston address on Newbury Street. The stylishly clean eyewear boutique‰Û÷s walls are covered with quality spectacles of every color, style, design and shape. The carefully curated selection of unique and eclectic options includes everything from classic designs to wild, brightly colored frames. ‰ÛÏHip without the rip‰Û� is the term coined to describe the shopping experience in this store, as their prices are competitive. Founder Richard Golden calls his products ‰ÛÏfashionomically correct‰Û� while also appealing to ‰ÛÏaccessory snobs.‰Û� The employees seem to delight in finding just the right look for you and making shopping for prescription eyewear fun. Be sure to leave yourself plenty of time to browse. They even do eye exams right then and there.
Many view looking good and seeing well as dual goals attainable only by monocle-graced cyclopes. Envision your new visage with today's Groupon. For $50,you get $125 worth of frames and glasses lenses at Q Optical, Boston Magazine's pick for Best Eyeglasses in 2005. Located on Newbury Street in Boston’s Back Bay, right off the T Green Line, Q Optical specializes in high-end European frames and lenses that refract light with elegance and subtlety.
Though there are 130 For Eyes Optical stores around the United States, the company still has the heart of a small start-up. Owned and operated since 1972, when a small group of friends started it in Philadelphia, aiming for quality eyewear manufacturing as well as customer service. These same friends, aided by a few family members, still lead the franchise today. They ensure that each location adheres to their original principles and mandates for mustard-colored shag carpets.
In each store, expert independent doctors test clients' visual acuity and general eye health with comprehensive exams. Then, a store associate helps each person outfit their eyes with designer frames by brands such as Ray-Ban, Prada, D&G, and Versace. For Eyes Optical has its own advanced 40,000-square foot optical lab in in Hialeah, Florida, where technicians shape, surface, and coat the lenses to fit each person's exact prescription. After creating the lenses?whether plastic, polycarbonate, or trivex Toughlites?they inspect and fit each into its corresponding frame by hand, a process that ensures quality control and guards against the robots, whose first objective is to hinder our eyesight.
Paul Fox's vision extends beyond the literal meaning of the word. An optician for more than 20 years and the owner of Spectacle Eyewear, Paul is also a designer who makes his own frames, as well as a retailer who handpicks frames from independent designers such as Tom Ford, Velvet Eyewear, and Intrigue. The uniting theme at Spectacle, though, is no branding allowed on any glasses. "This is a no logo zone," Paul told South End News. Logos distract or take the attention away from the wearer, so all they have to focus on at Spectacle is which of the sleek, modern frames are best for them. The showrooms feature a wide and fashionable selection of frames, and Paul himself is always on hand to help clients find a pair that seems tailor-made for their face. Keep an eye, or nose, out for Paul's hot chocolate or carrot juice, which he keeps close by to serve to his customers.