More about Leonardo Jewelers
Leonardo Jewelers is one of New Jersey’s premiere jewelers and one of America’s leading watch stores. It is a family business that has operated for more than half a century and is now in the hands of the second generation of family members. But their story is much more than that: Theirs is a story that shows that the American Dream is still alive and well. It is a story where a penniless immigrant arrives to the United States and builds a successful family business.
Leonardo Zeik founded the business. He fled Cuba in 1961 with no worldly possessions and with his wife and four very young children. He immediately started working in a bookbinding factory, then a pepper mill factory, and in his spare time, cleaning cars at a gas station. Shortly after arriving, he began augmenting his income by selling jewelry door to door and by 1964, he opened his first store in Elizabeth. He built the business the old fashion way: By working hard, treating customers the way he would want to be treated, and by having great compassion for the other Cuban immigrants who were arriving to this country without credit or money. He saw in those immigrants himself, and in that first store, he sold items other than jewelry, offering necessities to these newly arriving refugees with a handshake and a promise by them to make $5 weekly payments interest free. By the early 1970s, Leonardo began traveling to Europe and he became one of the first independent jewelers to import jewelry directly from some of Italy’s top jewelry designers. It was during this period that the store became widely recognized as a place to find exceptionally beautiful jewelry. It was also during this period that the business began to offer high-end Swiss timepieces.
Today, Leonardo’s children own and run the business, with stores in Red Bank and Metuchen. But they do so with their father’s tried and true approach of treating customers with exceptional care and offering a gorgeous selection from which to choose. “We have been raised by the golden rule to treat others the way you would want to be treated,” says one of the owners, Vivian Zeik Lund. She adds, “We are also excited to be in this wonderful Borough of Metuchen. And as we have gotten to know the borough better, we are astounded by the warmth and true friendliness of the town. It has been such a pleasant surprise.”
The new Leonardo Jewelers location is a part of a larger $100 million capital investment in Metuchen which includes Whole Foods, the new CVS drug store, and other retail and luxury apartment development like the Woodmont Metro complex.
“Our family is honored to be a part of the new renaissance occurring in Metuchen. We love that the borough has done this development while keeping the small town charm intact,” says Vivian. “We invite everyone to join us on November 2nd, meet our family and see our gorgeous collections of jewelry and watches.”