Rupert Sanderson Talks Level Shoe District Pop-Up And Dubai Street Food

Rupert Sanderson at Level
The designer at his pop-up shop.
Courtesy of Level Shoe District

Level Shoe District is fêting some new designer digs. Last week, the Dubai retailer bowed a pop-up with Rupert Sanderson, featuring the brand’s exclusive Gold Pebble styles in a special-edition 24-karat gold-leaf collection. Here, Spy gets the scoop from Sanderson on the  Pebble styles’ origins and the best spot in Dubai for street food.

It’s your first shop at Level. What excited you about the opening?
“The Alexander Calder-esque mobile installation couldn’t have been done better and really made the shoes stand out. It fit in seamlessly with the rest of the store concept.”

Tell us about the collection’s special-edition Pebble shoes. Why 24-karat gold, and how did you land on the unique details?
“The ‘Gold Pebble’ has been in our collection for more than five years now, and it has sold strongly in our Eastern markets. It was born out of an accessory that was designed to match a pebble I found on a beach in Sri Lanka years ago that has been sitting on my desk ever since. We decided to bring it to Dubai as a total story across a multitude of heel heights, fabrications and colors to really tell the story to its fullest potential. It has been a resounding success.”

Rupert Sanderson at Level

How was the trip to Dubai? Any fun tourist stories?
“Dubai amazes me in terms of how luxurious the experience is and the people are. I had the chance to eat fantastically well at the La Serre restaurant in the Vida Hotel, but also to eat some great local Lebanese street food. The Burj Khalifa [the world’s tallest building] was as awe-inspiring as ever, and I love the light, especially emerging from a long English wintertime.”