Ron Soto is a very groovy guy, if you don’t mind my using the word “groovy”. First of all, before we go any further, Ron and Kim Soto own and operate Soto’s Optical Boutique, at 1383 Main Street in Sarasota. They sell fashion eyewear, glasses, and accessories. The first time I visited their store, just to check things out, I was salivating. There’s top-of-the-line eyewear displayed so fashionably, with pendant lights that look like something cool from the future.
Their expansive collection of fashionable frames is huge! Ron and Kim go to most of the major trade shows in the U.S. and Europe, so whether you’re looking for standard or high-fashion frames, Soto’s Optical is the place. To give you a better idea of just what an expansive and exclusive collection they carry, here’s a list of their top sellers:
Zero G Eyewear, Eye Wood Eyewear, Specs 2 C Eyewear, Dolabany, OGI, Kawasaki, Swiss Flex Eyewear, Seraphin Eyewear and Minima Eyewear. Also, red lunettes, Porsche Design, Bevel, Orgreen, Freudenhaus, Beausoleil, and Wiley X, as well as Loree Rodkin, Satsuda, Yabi/art Frames, and Costa Del Mar sunglasses. Wow! That was a mouthful!
Accessories for your eye fashions are also available at Soto’s Optical Boutique, such as Paw Pets glass holders, La Loop eyeglass leashes, ready-made readers in lots of colors and strengths, and Custom Dive Masks. Don’t miss the Anuschka hand-painted handbags and small purses as well!
When I looked at the Anuschka bags I loved how unusual and one-of-a-kind they are and what a great gift they would make. Ron had said to me “What do women like most?” I shrugged. He said, “Purses and shoes”. Good point. The La Loop products are quite an improvement from those chains your Granny wore so she wouldn’t lose her glasses. I am crazy about them, and they come in every style from basic to sterling silver and leather. Well, La Loop is a sensational new way to hang your glasses in a safe but decorative way. The neck-chains come in leather, fabric, precious metals and more. A simple necklace made out of the above materials, with a silver or gold loop at chest level, will secure your glasses in high-fashion. La Loop also has a decidedly modern jewelry feeling. What a great idea for a gift! Some have sterling silver loops with designer finishes. Check them out yourself, especially if you’re a fashion forward person.
This is a real family business. Ron’s father had his original store in 1949, then moved to another location in 1958. As a teenager, Ron would come in and help his Dad after school and learn the trade by watching and assisting.. Ron and his brother each have their own optical business. Ron completed his 4 year apprenticeship and became a licensed optician around 1980. He puts the frames and lenses together on every pair, which is something he calls “old school” and is another way Soto’s Optical is different from the rest. His philosophy is “If you do one thing, do it well!”
There’s a sweet-natured black Lab JR, who lazes on the floor, taking it easy while his master is taking care of customers and doing the various tasks he has to do each day. There is also an assistant named Mike, who is a gentle soul and often works the front of the store while Ron is in the back and Kim is busy. If you need a repair, new nose tips, or an adjustment, your business is welcome at Soto’s Optical. Some customers have been coming to Ron for 30 years, which speaks volumes about the quality of service and customer care that goes into each job.
Hours of operation are Monday – Wednesday, 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. and Thursday and Friday, 9:30 a.m., to 8:00 p.m. They are also open 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. on Saturdays. Soto’s Optical Boutique is a family-run business with top-of-the-line frames, glasses and accessories that will be fitted to your vision needs, and where you get individual attention to any optical problem or upscale optical product you want to purchase. Visit Soto’s Optical Boutique soon. You won’t be disappointed! Oh, they have a brand new websitewww.sotosoptical.com, and it is the coolest site in town!