In the realm of business, the clash of personalities can often transform the workdays, weeks, and even years into a tumultuous and unproductive journey. Egos run rampant, territorial disputes arise, and the pursuit of credit becomes a relentless pursuit, all culminating in a challenging and rocky road ahead.
However, amidst this sea of discord, there emerges a remarkable anomaly. Meet Lisa O’Hurley, the Founder and CEO of LOHLA SPORT, a name synonymous with premium ladies’ golf-lifestyle apparel. In her corner stands none other than Paul Rees, a figure akin to the Wizard of Oz in the world of golf fashion.
Their story began when O’Hurley took the reins of U.S. operations while Rees spearheaded product design for the now-muted Golfino women’s clothing range. The synergy between them was instantaneous, as Rees fondly recalls, “We clicked from Day One.”
Hailing from London, the 50-year-old Rees is an unsung legend in golf fashion circles. In the aftermath of the Y2K frenzy, he masterminded the transformation of a fledgling Burberry golf line, catapulting it from $100,000 to a staggering $100 million in U.S. sales alone. His creations, like the men’s mercerized cotton polo shirt with the subtle Burberry check and the women’s capri pant adorned with check trims, were nothing short of sensational. The endorsement of Adam Scott, the best-dressed man in golf at the time, only fueled the fire.
Rees has never been more creatively inspired in his career than when working alongside O’Hurley. His approach to delivering what women desire, precisely when they desire it, seamlessly melds science and fashion, making LOHLA SPORT a must-have label in the discerning golf-lifestyle circles. While many designers rely on intuition, Rees’s approach is rooted in the scientific and psychological aspects of trend creation. The term “follower” is conspicuously absent from his vocabulary.
For LOHLA SPORT, the foundation lies in establishing a core identity of blue and white staples, encompassing tops, bottoms, skorts, outerwear, and accessories. Leading the charge are The Very Pant and The Golf Fitness Pull-On Pant. Rees and O’Hurley then infuse geometric designs and patterns into both their core and new collections. The emblematic LOHLA star, subtly integrated into each style, pays homage to O’Hurley’s Texan roots and the allure of Hollywood.
Rees’s creative genius shines through in LOHLA SPORT’s immensely popular collections like “Streets of Los Angeles,” “Winter Wonderlands,” and “Lavish Summer Locales.” As he puts it, “We took what worked at Golfino and brightened it up.”
The current autumn-winter “007” collection stands as a testament to Rees’s pride in its mystique and sophistication. With capsules named after iconic James Bond movies like Skyfall, Diamonds are Forever, For Your Eyes Only, Casino Royale, and Golden Eye, it underscores the significance of self-expression for women, both on and off the golf course.
Rees points to the forthcoming Bond Girl Jacket, in a sumptuous autumnal hue that offers both comfort on the course and a touch of espionage chic. It embodies LOHLA SPORT’s European design with a Los Angeles flair, drawing inspiration from the suave James Bond’s captivating Scottish accent and the Bond Girls’ adventures in Monaco—a fusion of flattery and sophistication.
O’Hurley chimes in, emphasizing, “Our 007 designs pack star power yet are timeless. There’s a bit of devilish flirtation in every piece to reimagine you in true Bond Girl magnificence on and off the golf course.” (Fun fact: O’Hurley once teed it up with Bond actor Sean Connery at Sherwood Country Club outside L.A.)
“We don’t simply produce clothing,” Rees says. “There’s a meaningful story behind every collection and coordinated capsule.”
LOHLA SPORT’s offerings exude a sporty-resorty-private-clubby aesthetic with touches of elegance that boost women’s confidence, catering to sizes ranging from XXS to XXL. Luxurious, soft, and functional fabrics sourced from Italy and Paris, along with meticulous craftsmanship from their manufacturing partner in Portugal, create a top-shelf look and feel.
“Our ‘Made for Play’ mantra is forever in our minds,” says Rees. “We make women look good and feel good about themselves as our styles are versatile in golf, yoga, pickleball, clubhouse and everyday social settings.”
Despite their pioneering work, Rees remains humble. There’s no room for personal glory as he and O’Hurley continue to craft designs that set the worlds of golf and women’s fashion ablaze.