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Major Italian designer plans Houston boutique in new River Oaks luxury complex

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Roberto Cavalli spring summer collection with model Karolina Kurkova
Model Karolina Kurkova in a Roberto Cavalli spring/summer 2013 creation Roberto Cavalli/Facebook

Speculation that the new River Oaks District mixed-use complex will become Houston's newest luxury shopping destination got a boost with word that Roberto Cavalli has chosen the center for a new boutique.

The Italian designer, a favorite of Houston's flashy society set for his revealing, body-hugging designs, plans to open a store late next year in the complex to be built at 4444 Westheimer, according to a report in PaperCity magazine.

Calls to San Diego-based developer OliverMcMillan, which is developing the property on a 15-acre tract where a large apartment complex once stood, were not immediately returned.

Other luxury retailers rumored to move be eyeing the complex are Hermès, which currently has a Houston address at BLVD Place on Post Oak, Christian Dior, which quietly closed its doors in the Galleria last year, Tom Ford and John Lobb.

Also confirmed for the mixed-use development is a 560-seat "luxury movie theater" to be built by iPic Entertainment, a Florida-based theater company. It will include eight auditoriums offering seating from between 50 to 90 guests each, an extensive wine list, a chef-prepared grab-and-go food selection from Tanzy Express and an exclusive bar by the name of Salt Lounge. 

Guests can pick between Premium seating (large, plush leather seats with an option to carry in your food and drink) or Premium Plus seating ("reclining, oversized chairs" with pillows, blankets and "individual service-call buttons that summon ninja-like servers"), and reserve spots ahead of time.

The complex will also include 99,000 square feet of office space and 278 residential units.

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