cli·​en·​tele ˌklī-ən-ˈtel How to pronounce clientele (audio)
 also  ˌklē-ˌän-
: a body of clients
a shop that caters to an exclusive clientele

Examples of clientele in a Sentence

… Gottfried had been complaining for months that our local clientele didn't have the class to appreciate the house. Jane Smiley, Good Faith, 2003
The lunchtime clientele at TJ's was polymorphous as usual, as at District Court, though there was a higher percentage of respectable clients here—local business folk having lunch at one of the last downtown bars that served decent food but wasn't fancy. Tracy Kidder, Home Town, 1999
The collections shown last month not only had plenty of clothes for the couture clientele to choose from, but, even more importantly, they were loaded with multiple messages for the fashion community at large. Carrie Donovan, New York Times Magazine, 21 Feb. 1988
According to the State Department in-jokes, this was the most exclusive place in Washington. For its clientele was made up almost entirely of CIA and KGB agents watching one another watching other people. Erich Segal, The Class, (1985) 1986
The restaurant generally attracts an older clientele.
Recent Examples on the Web Drinks will be served to Silencio’s discerning clientele while a world-class DJ or performer plays on in the background. Elise Taylor, Vogue, 8 Feb. 2024 The 500,000 square foot al fresco shopping destination is unlike any mall in the U.S. with its uber luxe mix of retailers, koi ponds, palm tree covered parking and well-heeled clientele. Miami Staff, Miami Herald, 30 Jan. 2024 Though South Lake Tahoe/Stateline always had nightclubs for younger clientele (Opal Ultra Loungue and Blu), its restaurants have lagged behind. Sacramento Bee, 30 Jan. 2024 Servicing a prestigious clientele, including several Fortune 500 companies, MGR Workforce caters to a comprehensive range of staffing needs. Kansas City Star, 29 Jan. 2024 In place of Patrick Swayze’s James Dalton, Jake Gyllenhaal leads the film as Edward Dalton, an ex-UFC fighter helping to keep rowdy clientele at a Florida Keys roadhouse in check. Larisha Paul, Rolling Stone, 25 Jan. 2024 Corado and others say their clientele includes people from all over Latin America. Angie Orellana Hernandez, Los Angeles Times, 23 Dec. 2023 For Michelle Phu, a wedding planner in Dallas with a primarily Asian American clientele, couples have requested EDM music for their receptions for years. Sanam Yar, New York Times, 14 Dec. 2023 Will financial advisers create new business models for diverse clienteles? Washington Post, 16 Jan. 2024 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'clientele.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


French clientèle, from Latin clientela, from client-, cliens — see client

First Known Use

1570, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of clientele was in 1570

Dictionary Entries Near clientele

Cite this Entry

“Clientele.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 21 Feb. 2024.

Kids Definition


cli·​en·​tele ˌklī-ən-ˈtel How to pronounce clientele (audio)
: a group of clients

More from Merriam-Webster on clientele

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