Located on the prestigious rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré in Paris the new design is an achievement of “unification” for the Italian brand in France.
Upon entering the boutique visitors are immediately captivated by an enormous 7-meter tall handcrafted mosaic glass tile portrait of first Empress of France Joséphine de Beauharnais. A sumptuously curved stair carved from the intensely red Rouge du Roi marble sweeps in front of the mural like a flowing imperial gown transporting visitors to the upper level women’s area. A second sculpted red marble stair with a monumental glass mosaic mural of the Emperor Napoléon Bonaparte links to the men’s areas. Both murals, intense in detail and color, are interpretations of the early 1800’s coronation paintings by half-Italian half-French painter, Baron François Gérard.
The interior spaces are not designed as distinctive rooms, rather they are conceived as large open areas that flow together creating a soft, sensual, baroque inspired perception of fluidity and movement. Paradoxically the soft, gently rounded walls are carved from solid blocks of Fior de Bosco, Rosa Tea, and Rosa Libeccio marbles. Cylindrical glass jewelry cases are nestled into the curved marble walls, like motionless sentry guards, to symmetrical mark the transitions between the different product areas. Adding further to the magical allure, in contrast to the stone, a fine layer of architectural jewelry composed of floor-to-ceiling polished brass bands supporting mirrors, shelves or small display cases slide freely in front of the sinuous marble walls adapting to each customers needs. The large undulating walls of the Sartoria, a private area for bespoke men’s tailoring, are finished in vertical bands of rich, warm, exotic Ebony, Mango and Radica wood marquetry and highlighted with pinstripes of polished brass. The flooring throughout the boutique is composed of an interlocking diamond pattern of polished Fior di Pesco, Salome, and Sequoia Red marbles further exemplifying the prowess of the Italian marble craftsmen. In contrast to the floor, the ceilings are cast planes of roughly textured board-formed concrete scored by luminous curvilinear light gorges.
The design of the Parisian boutique for an Italian brand is inspired by the history and unity of two cultures. The result is “Maximal Contemporary” creation, an architecturally seductive experience rich in texture color and allure.