Louis Vuitton’s new Maison Louis Vuitton Vendôme in Paris, housed in a stately building that dates back to 1714 and was designed by Versailles architect Jules-Hardouin Mansart, has today been carefully and thoughtfully restored and reawakened by another architect of nobles and aristocrats, Peter Marino. It marks a homecoming of the highest order for the French heritage brand. Place Vendôme is the site where, over 160 years ago, a young Monsieur Vuitton opened his very first store. Today, the ritzy enclave is populated by luxury brands and the recently restored Ritz, but the rich history of the area—both as it pertains to France and to the brand itself—is at the heart of the new Maison, which houses Vuitton’s entire women’s and men’s collections, accessories, haute joaillerie, a VIP atelier, and the Objets Nomades range of travel and home objects.
Marino, one of the top interior designers in the world, is the principal of Peter Marino Architect PLLC, an internationally acclaimed architecture, planning and design firm founded in 1978 and based in New York City, with several offices around the US, like Philadelphia, Miami and so on. Marino’s designs can usually be characterised by emphasised materiality, texture, scale light and the constant dialogue between interior and exterior. He is widely known for his residential and retail interior designs for the most iconic names in the fashion and art worlds. Notable and recently completed retail projects include Ermenegildo Zegna flagship stores in Paris, Milan, New York, Tokyo and Shangai or Chanel boutiques in Paris, New York and Singapore.
“The Place Vendôme façades were created for Louis XIV and are marvellously Baroque, but they were stage sets for the king. The work behind them was not completed in his lifetime and is not considered of equal historical importance. So, as a philosophy, I thought I would juxtapose a modern aesthetic to everything within the walls and restore as beautifully and faithfully as possible the exterior” explained the architect.
“The ultramodern insertions bring an element of transparency, increasing the flow of natural light within the space. We filled in what was a courtyard between the two townhouses—now a double-height space with a skylight introducing daylight from above”.
We reference various French periods and contrast this with a light-filled, art-filled, sleek, ultramodern interior.