Jan 19, 2015

The Bonobos Guideshop Experience

If you take a stroll through your nearest shopping center...


If you take a stroll through your nearest shopping center or mall, you’ll find that the options for shopping destinations geared solely towards men sadly limiting. They tend to sell suits that may or may not be fashionable and you’ll likely find a pair or two of pleated pants.

Bonobos is among a number of online-only outlets devoted to a different fashion experience for men with tailored fits, bold colors, a selection of Made in the USA goods and an increasingly expanded collection.

I mentioned that they’re online-only, and I’m sure as you’ve taken a peek at the photos in this post, they’ve slowly started to expand their brick & mortar experience to allow guys to kick the tires so to speak. They still call their locations e-commerce stores, as their guideshops are an extension of the online experience.


Bonobos reached out to me to test-drive their new location here in sunny San Diego at their recently opened guideshop at Westfield UTC in La Jolla. They encourage potential shoppers to schedule an appointment online (walk-ins also welcome) for the best experience with a representative to get a guided tour through the store and measure for the perfect fit.

I’m familiar with their chinos, and own a pair of shorts that are among my favorites and picked out a pair of their American-made travel jeans crafted with Cone Denim that were extremely comfortable. They’re made from 99% cotton with 1% stretch. I checked out a variety of fits, with a Stone Pale Ale in hand. The slim straight fit didn’t quite work for my size but the straight fit, a bit more tailored than other brands, fit me like a glove.


What makes the Bonobos e-commerce store a bit different from the stores located around it, in this case an upscale Southern California mall, is that you do have to wait for the jeans to be shipped to you, after ordering in-store or back at your computer in the comfort of your own home. Unlike retailers that are forced to have sky-high prices and then discount items that don’t sell, they’ve combined the savings of an online model with still allowing potential buyers to check out their wares. You’ll find a handful of sizes in store, and in the off chance that you’re not satisfied with what is shipped to you, they offer hassle-free returns.

They’re in the process of opening locations nationwide, with Atlanta, San Diego and Silicon Valley being their newest locations. If you’re not near one of these locations, they’re open to requests on their website.

All photos by Broderick Smylie

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tagged san diego, style, bonobos, details, guideshop, la jolla...