By Christina Failma, Web editor
|Although her business is quickly making a name
for itself, many customers may be unaware that the owners of
the store are international HPU students majoring in business.
We each take five classes, run the store, or have other part-time
jobs,” said Carlos Carriker, Figueroa’s husband.
Opened on Jan. 1 of this year, their store, San Lorenzo, has
attracted many people from all over O‘ahu.
Figueroa runs the business together with her brother and husband.
The trio is living proof that dedication and confidence can go
a long way.
However, San Lorenzo hasn’t always been what it is today.
Coming from humble beginnings, the retail store was originally
the brain-child of Figueroa’s parents.
My father went through the long process of hiring a lawyer and
taking care of all the legalities. In about six months, we were
ready to go,” Figueroa said.
Figueroa originally got the idea for the store during the summer
of 2004 when she traveled home to Peru and brought back jewelry
and bikinis to Hawai‘i for her friends.
My friends really liked all the earrings that I’d bring
back. I would have a lot, and they would be gone just like that,” Figueroa
Figueroa’s family business began small by selling its products
at various high school craft fairs, small boutiques in Waikiki,
local college campuses, and eventually at the 2005 New Product
Show held at the Neal S. Blaisdell Center.
It was hard setting up the booth”, said Carriker. “We
didn’t have a car, so I would have to carry the boxes and
ride the bus. And it was time consuming having to lay out the
earrings on the table one by one.”
On San Lorenzo’s opening day, the family was proud to welcome
visitors to its own store. “We’re able to offer more
to our customers now that we have our own store,” Figueroa
said. “All our bikinis are handmade and are directly from
our manufacturers. Customers can even get custom-made bikinis!
They can pick whatever color or design they want.”
San Lorenzo hopes to eventually expand and open more stores on
other parts of the island.
We want to get our name out there and be known for custom making
good, quality merchandise,” Figueroa said.
If there’s one thing I’ve learned about opening a
business, it’s that you have to expect to give up part
of your freedom,” Figueroa added. “You definitely
need to be very dedicated to do this, because it’s not
San Lorenzo is located at 3464 Wai‘alae Ave. in Kaimuki.
Anticipate excellent customer service and quality merchandise
when visiting the store.
For more information about San Lorenzo, visit their Web site
at www.myspace.com/sanlorenzobikinis or call them directly at