“A company must evolve without losing the essence with which it was created”

Pilar Lekube is the third generation of the Meltxora store.
Paul Vignes

The origin of Meltxora is in Somera, 13 and dates back to 1898. It was the first store designed as a place of cultural tradition in Basque fashion to dress baserritarras and arrantzales. In the first store, in addition to traditional clothes, they sold wallets, wedding rings, earrings, belts, handbags, images of the Sacred Heart, straw hats for the fields…“It was like a bazaar full of things. My aitite put sticks at the entrance to place the different straw patterns. Customers came from the regions of Arratia, Durangaldea to buy clothes and different things”, says Pilar Lekube, the third generation of the company. With effort and hard work, they have become a reference of typical Basque costumes. Meltxora’s granddaughter, Pilar, has helped her mother and father in the store since she was a child. She took over the reins of the business when her aunt fell ill and it is now her son, Daniel Duñabeitia, of the fourth generation, who is in charge of perpetuating the family tradition. “I am very happy because after so many years this activity can continue,” she says.

Through constant evolution and innovation, They offer a wide range of traditional Basque clothing, handmade tableware and household items, created and handcrafted. When Pilar took over the business, she decided to merge her passion for design and shape new creations. In this way, their experience allowed them to develop their own designs and to have an immense capacity to advise professionally on how to combine the different pieces of the costumes. “Before, the teachers’ gowns were all the same and I decided to change things and move forward in this area.”

Pilar believes that a company must evolve and adapt to new times without losing the essence with which it was founded. For this caste merchant, the recognition of the town hall of Bilbao is a “gift” that has thrilled her. “I’m happy. It’s a pity that my son, who has gone on vacation, is not here, but for us it is very important that the Town Hall takes us into account and values ​​​​the effort we have made to the city”. Meltxora is still open in Carnicería Vieja, in the heart of Casco Viejo and also has another store in Sopela, Doctor Landa, 2. “It’s very sacrificed, but it’s a passionate world”he concludes.


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