Phone-oriented flagship retail locations seem to be all the rage these days, but who would've thought MVNOs would be getting into the action? MySpace-friendly Helio looks to gain some additional visibility when it opens its first of five dedicated stores in Santa Monica this October. If the renderings hold true, we have to admit the place looks pretty nifty -- just add some hot new devices to match the decor and Helio may have a winner on their hands. Additional facilities will be opening in New York, Denver, San Diego, and Palo Alto through late '06 and early '07. Any love for the midwest, guys?

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Helio to open flagship store in Santa Monica