Modern heritage: David Collins Studio designs new De Grisogono flagship
An illuminated sign (a rarity on New Bond Street) marks the spot of De Grisogono’s new flagship. All shiny black with gold lettering, its façade doesn’t differ greatly from the Swiss jewellers’ other stores (and there are 15 worldwide) but inside tells a different story. A ‘heritage’ look (think trad hotel meets Italian frescoes) has been replaced by the modern brush strokes of David Collins Studio.
‘De Grisogono was founded in 1993, so there was no genuine heritage to draw upon,’ explains Lewis Taylor, design director of retail at David Collins Studio. Instead, Taylor turned to the house’s watches and jewellery for inspiration. De Grisogono first found fame with its cloudy and black diamonds; hence, a dark palette of brown faceted marquetry (referencing the faces of men’s watches) and a black marble floor. This is designed in a pear drop pattern that references the Briolette cut, first used in the 12th century and a De Grisogono signature. Interlaced bronze detailing refers to the jeweller’s ever-popular ’Allegra’ bracelet, and throughout the 130 sq m space, gemstone-bright red, amethyst and green pops up unexpectedly on furniture and upholstery.
The ‘Stanza del Tempo’ room is dedicated to (mainly men’s) watches and David Collins Studio is working with a Bond Street gallery to curate ever-changing artworks within the space. (It does this successfully with Sadie Coles gallery in its Alexander McQueen stores.)
A modern and luxurious drawing room, in the form of a ‘Grand Sala’, hosts royal and loyal customers and their entourages. Fawaz Gruosi, De Grisogono’s larger-than-life founder insists on such a space in all his stores. It’s where 75 per cent of deals are done and where Gruosi likes to settle down on the sofa, light a cigar and discuss high jewellery commissions in all their glittering detail.