Like its fashion siblings, Milan's design retail scene is dominated by Italian behemoths running their own single brand stores. Multi-brand shops specialising in a quality edit of contemporary design can be hard to find, which is why Spotti is one of the city's best-kept secrets.
Opened in 1986 by brothers Claudio and Mauro Spotti, the shop hangs quietly on the fringes of Milan's central shopping district and features a considered selection of new furniture, lighting and carpet designs jumbled seamlessly with iconic re-issues.
Inside, the shop's good mood and fresh scene are owed to its twice-yearly installations curated by Arianna Lelli Mami and Chiara di Pinto of local design firm Studiopepe. The latest incarnation, entitled 'Summer Tales', features a colourful mix of Kettal's outdoor 'Bitta' sofa (in a new rope version), 'Modernica Bubble' lamps and chairs by George Nelson, exclusive ceramic sculptures by Livia Polidoro and Adobe terracotta desktop accessories, all set against a canvas of tropical wallpaper by Cole & Son.
The store first enlisted Studiopepe in 2009 because of their unconventionally Milanese approach to interiors. 'We knew that they could make a difference,' says Claudio Spotti, 'especially in a city where design is everywhere but it's often presented in a stiff way.' Lelli Mami's and di Pinto's first project involved transforming the store's interiors completely in white and since then has grown in scope to also include research of young designers and specially commissioned pieces.
For each seasonal store takeover, the studio is now given total creative control of Spotti's showroom design, window and product installations, reigned in only if there are new launches to include such as the Kvadrat and Raf Simons collaboration from this year's Salone del Mobile or Lina Bo Bardi's 'Bowl' Chair for Arper.
Spotti also offers interior design services for homes and offices, kitchens produced by Valcucine, and custom-made furniture under its eponymous label, including pieces designed by Studiopepe. The presentation of 'Summer Tales', which will run in-store throughout October, is the shop's tenth exhibit with Lelli Mami and di Pinto.