ZELAI Óptica opened in Pozuelo de Alarcón, just outside Madrid, 30 years ago by Mentxu Ormazábal. An optician and lover of exclusivity, Mentxu began the search for eyewear with a personality and style outside of Spain. “In those days, it was impossible to find healthy vision and innovative design together,” comments Amaya Ázocar, the founder’s daughter. Following the success of the first shop, the second location opened in 1999 in Chueca, a trendy, gay-friendly neighborhood in the heart of Madrid.

Working with independent brands such as Monokol, Michel Henau, Andy Wolf, Res Rei, and Kaleos, their buying policy limits the purchase to one or two pieces of the same models, maintaining the exclusivity of the collection. “We work with many suppliers and designers that we love. In general, we focus on independent design that adapts perfectly to changes in style because their structures allow it.”

Since the beginning, their philosophy has been to provide a complete personalized experience and to create a special connection with the clients. With this in mind, the shops have been designed with a careful attention to details from optometry to choosing the right pair. ZELAI Óptica also prides itself in being a pioneer of introducing metal models, while also counting all-black models as their staples. The trend factor for this season is reflected in the mini glasses and hexagonal models in their assortment.

Zelai Optica

Plaza de Chueca 9
28004 Madrid, Spain
+34 91 524 0547

Photos: courtesy of Zelai Optica

This article originally appeared in the SPEED issue // published in September 2018.