Fashion premiere: Delvaux

The beloved Belgian luxury-brand has opened its first boutique in Milan.

Photos: Santi Caleca

id joins the city of Milan in celebrating Delvaux’s first flagship in Milan, designed by the Italian architectural Studio Vudafieri-Saverino Partners in via Bagutta 12, in the heart of the Fashion Quarter.

The project was designed by Vudafieri-Saverino Partners, Milanese Studio which since 2012 has been creating the Delvaux boutiques’ design worldwide.

‘In this new boutique, we wanted to celebrate the brand’s values and heritage, through elements having a strong link with Milan’s artistic-cultural context. For this, our starting point has been names such as Caccia Dominioni, Gardella and Portaluppi, who have made Milanese architectural history and who have always been references for our work’, explain the architects Tiziano Vudafieri and Claudio Saverino.

Located in the recently restored Palazzo Reina, the concept is characterised by a pairing of twentieth century Milanese design and references to Belgian creativity. The result is a distinctive place; both a celebration of Delvaux, of Belgitude and of the city of Milan.

The boutique extends over 200 sqm and is subdivided in a series of salons of both different dimensions and aesthetic atmospheres: ample spaces alternate with other more intimate ones, where noble materials and neutral colours recall the delicate luxury and refinery of the Delvaux creations.

As visitors enter, they inhale a blend of history and the contemporary life – in a space in which every element acts as a spokesperson to a story.

In the first room, marble panels are placed on the walls which celebrate the typical entrances of twentieth century Milanese palaces. Ceilings and walls have been decorated by the artist Filippo Falaguasta, who in homage to the culture of great Milanese masters like Gio Ponti and Piero Portaluppi, has created a lozenge-shaped drawing, besides the original patines murales, as if to re-evocate an ancient, and later removed affresco.

The tribute to Milanese tradition is also found in the historic pieces signed by the greatest Milanese designers of the 20th century, such as Luigi Caccia Dominioni, Ignazio Gardella, and Angelo Lelli.

In the second room, undulating shapes of the iconic Delvaux boutique wardrobe stand out. Normally designed in white plaster, here it appears in Macassar ebony. A work of artisan excellence of the Van der Kelen school in Bruxelles – unique in the world in teaching the traditional decorative picture technique – the covering has been hand-painted on-site by two of its scholars and the school’s director. The result is a unique piece, a surprising trompe l’oeil, which enhances a historical Piero Portaluppi wardrobe.

The great walled bookcase characterizes the third room. Five metres tall, it is inspired by an iconic 1960s building, designed by Luigi Caccia Dominioni in Piazza Carbonari in Milan.  Within it are displayed Delvaux accessories, along with a precious collection of twentieth century ceramic vases of ancient Gant production. On the opposite wall stand out the colors of a large mosaic of the ’70s, a unique piece by the artist Charles Gianferrari.