40 Under 40' 2023
Company name: Luxe Outdoor Living
Position in the company: Owner – Manager
Bio: Quebec native Catherine Rathe is the owner of Luxe Outdoor Living in Pompano Beach, FL, and her entrepreneurial spirit comes honestly. She inherited it from both paternal and maternal sides of her family with entrepreneurial grandparents, aunts, and uncles. She credits her father with being the most influential role model. He was the president of a leisure furniture and outdoor lifestyle company with 42 franchise stores. At 14 she began working in his store and while attending HEC Montreal, one of Canada’s most elite business schools, she worked part-time at their head office.
While working for TD bank in Montreal, studying to become a chartered financial analyst and planning a career in the world of high finance, an opportunity came knocking that she couldn’t pass up. She was approached by Pool & Patio Depot. They were expanding into the US and due to her industry experience, impressive education and references, they offered her the managerial post over locations they were to opening in South Florida. “There are moments in life,” she says, “when a door opens into a world that has so much color, challenge and creative potential that you’d be foolish not to leap into it.” So, even though she hadn’t planned to return to the casual furniture market, she realized that she had a passion for the industry, could use her finance and marketing skills to help grow the business, and was excited to test herself in a new country.
After seven years of running two locations for Pool & Patio Depot, Catherine felt it was time to leave and open her own store. In 2021, Luxe Outdoor Living was born. She knew had the chops to negotiate with financial institutions, manufacturers and vendors and a vision for a new, upscale outdoor lifestyle brand that responded to the needs and demands of the South Florida market. “It’s not enough to be on trend but to help shape those trends.” She’s tailored her store to cater to a clientele who expect the finest quality, timeless designs, superior comfort, white glove service and a knowledgeable staff. The Luxe brand carries only furnishings that are as durable as they are fashionable. With Catherine’s fine eye for design and talented visual merchandising skills her store is welcoming and features some of the most respected lines in the industry. Hers is the exclusive Jacuzzi dealer for hot tubs, saunas and swim spas from West Palm Beach to Key West. In addition to patio furniture and accessories, Catherine has also selected top lines of performance grill islands and green walls that create a unique outdoor room experience.
In a few short years, Catherine has established a multi-million-dollar casual furniture showroom to which clients flock from Miami, Ft. Lauderdale, and Palm Beach. With determination and confidence, she accomplished this during the challenges of Covid and plans for even greater achievements in the near future. In addition to curating new products to attract more customers, she’s also plans to begin franchising throughout the state.
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