Design codes

Playing with contrasts between past and present, white and black, lights and shadows. This is the concept by Gwenael Nicolas for the new Versace boutique recently opened in Florence

Versace, Florence, Italy
Versace, Florence, Italy
DATA SHEET

Owner: Versace
Interior design: Gwenael Nicolas ñ Studio Curiosity
Furnishings: on design
Photo credits: courtesy of Versace

Versace, Florence, Italy

The French architect residing in Tokyo, where he founded his studio Curiosity, always keeps in mind the relationship between space and what will happen inside it, to design places capable of offering clients a true experience. With extensive retail design experience, Gwenael Nicolas has worked on other Versace boutiques, including the one in Miami that has inspired certain aspects of the store in Florence. Here, contemporary design blends in harmony with the history of the building at Via De’ Tornabuoni 17. Near Piazza Santa Trinità, the boutique welcomes customers with many windows featuring geometric motifs that alternate white triangles of Venus marble with dark ones in Pierre Bleue (inverted with respect to the facade of the store in Miami).

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The layout is clear: the front part of the store, towards the street, is entirely for women, while by crossing an intermediate space with a blue lounge one reaches the area for men. The original vaulted ceilings and capitals have been conserved and enhanced by a gilded metal structure of great visual impact, which contributes to the lighting of the space. To keep the geometric pace, the architect has designed a similar feature in strips of brass for the wall on which women’s accessories are displayed. Gates clad in gold galvanized metal connect the various areas of the Versace boutique, filled with the inimitable codes of the brand that is always surprising, always with an eye on innovation. These codes include the gold of the suspended ceiling, the wood floors clad with inlaid tiles made by Italian artisans, the walls covered in paint with a materic texture developed together with Oikos to add a rough look to the space. In several areas carpeting takes the place of the wood floors, in tones of gold and blue that blend well with the settees and armchairs in ton-sur-ton velvet, designed by the studio Curiosity. Marble and elements in gold galvanized metal set off the beauty and luxury of the creations of the maison.

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