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Design Review on Metropolis Living

I recently visited Metropolis Living’s new location in the Castlefield design district which opened November 1, 2014. They relocated from the Junction where they opened their business almost 5 years ago, where I first found them.

Business partners and siblings, Phil Friere and Maggie Gattesco, share a long history of collecting, picking, and refurbishing vintage items. Phil was trained as a millwright, in mechanical drafting, graphics, and has always been drawn to steel.

They outgrew their store in the Junction and have now doubled their space to accommodate the increased quantity and wider variety of custom furniture designs, large scale vintage signs, and art installations.

This past year, Metropolis Living has seen a significant increase in custom designs as well as commissioned pieces through the design trade.

“I really enjoy collaborating with home owners and designers on custom pieces as well as working with local artisans to make them.” –Phil Freire


Metropolis Living is known as a home décor store specializing in industrial machinery that is repurposed into tables (coffee, side, and dining), lighting, and other items, based on the enduring appeal of industrial design.

“We collect salvaged materials, recondition them for sale, or repurpose them into signature pieces.” –Phil Freire


Both Phil and Maggie are passionate about finding new items which they source throughout North America and Europe. They’re both very knowledgeable about all the items in the store.


New products are coming in constantly and there are too many vintage items and refurbished pieces to mention, but a few include: a large custom elm table top with an operable crank complete with saw marks, which is hand stained for $6000; a 1950s atomic flashing ball for $3800; and a wall mounted Marlin for $2500. They also create high quality reproductions including 18” high stock bulb lit letters and numbers made locally for $290, metal signs, as well as custom lighting. Phil is particularly fond of antique medical cabinets that he hand-strips and polishes.

Metropolis Living will continue to provide a prop rental program and have plans to rent their store as an event space based on their previous experience with Metropolis Factory in the Junction, which just recently closed due to the owner selling the building.

My impression from when I walked across the street was that this store is different. I was drawn to the flashing lights and the front display with unique items I’ve never seen before. The dimly lit store with its dark walls creates a moody atmosphere. The quality and variety of the items kept me in the store longer than planned. Metropolis Living is a refreshing addition to this area.


Check them out at 81 Ronald Avenue, Unit B, across from Elte, next to Ginger’s, Threadcount, and Reznick Carpet. I really enjoyed going into the store and talking to both Phil and Maggie. I bought a great sign, “Customer parking at rear” which is now hanging in my interior design office. You can contact them at 647-343-6900 or visit their website

Look for more of my design related blogs on local businesses coming soon.


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