The acronym stands for Strategic Business Unit, but the name is misleading. This is a fashion label founded in 1993 by brothers Cristiano and Patrizio Perfetti, and one of the city’s most stylish jeans shops. Overseas, the luxury SBU brand is sold at high-end retailers like Jones and The Library in London, Fred Segal in Los Angeles, and Beans in Tokyo, to mention a few.
The Rome flagship store is just around the corner from Piazza Navona, and specializes in denims, but also designs a refined range of casual clothing, sportswear and tailored leather goods, shoes and very posh fashion accessories, like the 100% cashmere balaclava. I love their crisp white cotton T-shirts, stylish motorcycle jackets and cream canvas plimsoles.
The vintage wooden counters, stacked drawer chests, and cast iron columns of former 1800s draper’s workshop provide the perfect, understated setting for the Perfetti brothers range of classic and ink-dyed denims. The pair I bought was a superb indigo stretch jeans, which looks (and feels) perfectly worn, soft and supple; and a men’s leather combat boot, which–if properly treated–keeps my feet chic and dry in all weather conditions.
Besides the large street-front rooms, one for the men’s collection, with a suspended racing scull hanging from the ceiling, and the women’s collection room, there is a photography studio used for commercial and creative work, and then there’s a small hidden backyard, which is perfect for a relaxing pause between shopping sprees.