Maison Louis Vuitton Venezia, which is situated next door to Piazza San Marco has opened its door to the public on April 21, 2013. Espace Louis Vuitton Venezia is the first in Italy and only the sixth of its kind in the world. Michael Burke, President of Louis Vuitton says “Venice has always been special to the House. A city on a lagoon at the crossroads of East and West, it symbolizes travel and openness to new horizons. It is also a city of art and design, which has always known how to bring together beauty, elegance and art de vivre. With this Maison, we wanted to pay homage to Venetians and lovers of the city by offering them our most beautiful designs, as well as a space for art and culture wholly dedicated to them. ”
Upon arrival on the Calle San Marco, visitors encounter the amazing sight of a rationalist and monumental palazzo, designed by architect Brenno Del Giudice in 1936. This is followed by sculptor Napoleone Martinuzzi’s haut-reliefs, making symbolic references to the building’s cinematic past. Today, they are joined by the building’s new stars, elegant and sophisticated shoes in specially created windows, the fruit of the region’s artisans and their savoir-faire, designed and made in the nearby Fiesso d’Artico shoes Manufacture. Once past the front doors, visitors enter a vast lobby opening onto spaces dedicated to men’s and women’s leather goods. The architecture and design, with the collaboration of architect Peter Marino, are based on a game of shadows and light, reminiscent of Louis Vuitton’s iconic Damier, a geometric symphony of chiaroscuro. On the floor, onyx flagstones repeat the play of light and dark. On the walls, the glossy ivory of the Venetian stucco, decorated with pale golden shelves, contrasts with the dark wood of the floor counters. The concept is one of modernity punctuated by tradition, as seen in the antique Venetian mirror and a collection of carnival masks which pays homage to the city’s craftsmanship. Next to familiar Monogram or Damier bags, the store will showcase reinterpreted icons in mini versions, such as the Petit Noé and the Alma BB, as well as designs in Epi leather reworked in 15 new and vibrant colours.
Venice and Louis Vuitton have had a long-standing relationship. A question that is still asked is whether Georges Vuitton was inspired by the quatrefoils on the façade of the Palazzo Ducale when he designed the Monogram pattern.