New e-cig store gets arty

JAHNA PELOQUIN | Updated 1/13/2014

Not content to be just another e-cig store, the new Infinite Vapor in Uptown adds an artfully local touch.

[Infinite Vapor in Uptown]

The latest e-cig shop to open its doors, Infinite Vapor (1400 Lagoon Av. S., Mpls.) is definitely not your typical e-cig shop. Part of a new vapor e-cig franchise with seven locations in Minnesota and North Dakota headed up by former Twin Cities promoter Beecher Vaillancourt and his business partner Gavin Rydell, the shop looks more like a slick design studio than a head shop.

To give the space its stylized feel, they enlisted the help of Tricia Khutoretsky, curator of the hyped art gallery Public Functionary. She’s styled the space with a collection of graphic, street art-inspired screenprints by local and locally-connected artists Burlesque of North America, Greg Gossel, Eric Inkala, Adam Garcia and Mike Davis, plus an abstract, large-scale wallpaper mural by Michael Cina, released by Minneapolis luxury artist wallpaper line Area Designed Environments. The shop will also carry Glam Doll Donuts on Sundays and act as an official hard ticket location for First Avenue concerts.

Over the past year, Minnesota has seen an unprecedented rise in e-cigarette retailers. According to a list posted by MNVA, Minnesota is now home to 38 e-cigarette and vapor shops, about 20 of which are located in the Metro Area of the Twin Cities, four locations in Minneapolis and one in St. Paul. The rising popularity of e-cigarettes has been a boon to Twin Cities retailers, as many cigarette smokers are turning to e-cigs as a healthier alternative to traditional smoking, as well as a way to help them quit smoking. In fact, both Vaillancourt and his sister Anjel Vaillancourt, the Uptown store’s manager, say they’ve successfully quit smoking since establishing the business.

More photos of the shop's interior:

Detail of the store's wallpaper by Michael Cina

Detail of the store's wallpaper by Michael Cina

[Images by Michael Johnson for Infinite Vapor]