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Guest Contributor

Rodd & Gunn's sporty approach to upscale menswear is inspired by the outdoorsy lifestyle and spectacular scenery of its home in New Zealand.

More than a third of the island nation is set aside for parks and marine life – fertile ground for multiple sports from skiing to sailing. Its most populous city, Auckland, has more boats per capita than anywhere else on earth – one for every 11 residents. It’s yachting heaven.

Rodd & Gunn captures the adventurous Kiwi spirit and rugged sophistication in clothing, shoes, accessories and luggage. The look is preppie with contemporary lines.

Signature styles are cotton piqué polos embroidered with the brand’s English pointer logo, jeans-style pants crafted of Italian fabrics, and softly tailored jackets.

“The beauty of the collection is that it can be dressed up or dressed down,” a Rodd & Gunn representative says.

The piqué polo is perfect for watching a kid’s soccer match but also looks great worn under a jacket for dining out. It’s offered in two fits: trim and classic.

Save for a bit of spandex for stretch, nearly all Rodd & Gunn clothing is made exclusively of natural fibers for breathability and comfort, i.e., cotton, linen, silk, wool, cashmere and leather.

“We use very fine quality fabrics – 90 percent of our shirts and all of our pants are made of Italian textiles,” notes the brand. “We use special denim from Mauritius in our jeans, which have more of a soft wash.”

Pops of color and whimsical prints – penguins, for instance – enliven the brand’s classic palette of blues, grays, sand and white.

Open now, the store is stocked with both summer and fall looks. Leather messenger and weekender bags that are hand stitched in New Zealand round out the mix.

Here in America, Rodd & Gunn tries to maintain a really great summer range all year round, especially for people who travel to resorts during the winter.

Rodd & Gunn's English pointer named Gunner

And about that logo, Rodd & Gunn is perhaps the only men’s wear retailer in the world with a full-time canine ambassador – a handsome speckled liver English pointer named Gunner who travels among Rodd & Gunn’s U.S. stores charming customers. (It’s a full-time job for him and his owner.)

If he’s not around, you can still see the carved greenstone, a mountain jade of spiritual significance to New Zealand’s Maori and English populations. Traditionally, it is given only as a gift.