Melissa Gonzalez

Founder & CEO

The Lionesque Group

Melissa Gonzalez is a pioneer in bringing the pop-up retail format to the mainstream. She is the founder and CEO of The Lionesque Group, a firm of award-winning retail strategists and pop-up architects™ as well as a Principal and Shareholder in MG2, a global architecture firm. 

Beginning with a deep dive into strategy, Melissa helps clients rethink environments and in-store experiences to convey compelling stories – ones that animate discovery and engagement – attracting new customers, elevating loyalty with existing customers, and building a platform for their future evolution. Some of her impressive clients include brands such as Amazon, COTY, Estee Lauder, M.Gemi, Nordstrom, Purple, Stella & Dot, The RealReal, YUM brands, and others, as well as property groups such as GGP Properties (now Brookfield) and Steiner & Associates.

Melissa reflects on her work in her best-selling book, The Pop-Up Paradigm: How Brands Can Build Human Connections in a Digital Age. She is a regular go-to expert in retail and is often featured in Forbes, Fortune, WSJ, Business Insider, Glossy, Digiday, Retail Touchpoints, WWD and on Cheddar and CBS News. She is also a regular contributor for ABC LA Radio, Yahoo Finance and Advertising Week 360. 

The work behind Melissa and her team has received notable award recognition from CLIO, Glossy, and New York Design Awards. Melissa has also been recognized as one of LinkedIn’s top 10 must-know writers and creators, Design: Retail’s Top 10 Retail Design Influencers of the Year, Design: Retail's 40 under 40, and Innovator of the Year by Retail Touchpoints.