Coc­cinelle Un­veils New Flag­ship in Mi­lan

The Ital­ian ac­ces­sories com­pany worked with es­tab­lished ar­chi­tect Roberto Ba­cioc­chi.

WWD Digital Daily - - News - BY LUISA ZARGANI

MI­LAN — Coc­cinelle's new flag­ship store here is quite unique in the city — a fun com­bi­na­tion of el­e­ments rem­i­nis­cent of both a pas­try shop and a beauty par­lor.

De­signed by es­tab­lished ar­chi­tect Roberto Ba­cioc­chi, the unit, which re­veals a new store con­cept for the Ital­ian ac­ces­sories brand, is lo­cated on the busy shop­ping street Corso Vit­to­rio Emanuele II, op­po­site a Michael Kors flag­ship. Cov­er­ing two floors, the store is mainly de­vel­oped on the lower level, with bistro-like round ta­bles, co­coon­ing arm­chairs and soft poufs that look like cream puffs — all in a color palette rang­ing from pow­der pink to pas­tel green. The sugar level is balanced by sleek steel dis­plays, Plex­i­glass columns and a ceil­ing with a white origami-like dec­o­ra­tion.

Ba­cioc­chi, who has de­signed stores for Prada, Miu Miu, Pas­tic­ce­ria March­esi and La Perla, com­pared the blue­print to “step­ping into the brain of a woman.

It's a world unto it­self, with a path that is un­pre­dictable, not lin­ear, like a woman's di­ver­si­fied mind and thoughts.” To wit, columns are not round but mul­ti­fac­eted and there are sev­eral asym­met­ric niches. There are no edges, and the space is also made soft by some sur­faces cov­ered in eco-fur. Ba­cioc­chi said that, sim­i­larly to a pas­try shop, the store can “grat­ify that ado­les­cent side that all women have. I love to watch how women com­mu­ni­cate, with­out hi­er­ar­chies, and I love how they suc­ceed in a very mas­cu­line world. This is like ‘Alice in Won­der­land' and the col­ors help ma­te­ri­al­ize the emo­tions.”

Ba­cioc­chi worked in sync with the brand's creative di­rec­tors Eleonora Pu­jia and Vin­ciane Stou­ve­naker. “There was noth­ing like this be­fore — you feel you step in a place of sur­prises and emo­tions, like a child in a pas­try shop,” said Pu­jia. “It's all about the senses, and tick­ling the senses.” Echo­ing Ba­cioc­chi, she said the store re­flected a “fem­i­nine uni­verse that is dy­namic, a ref­er­ence to the many faces of fem­i­nin­ity.”

“This is a dream­like world, where you feel any­thing is pos­si­ble for a woman,” mused Stou­ve­naker. “The women's uni­verse is cen­tral here.”

The lower floor spans over 1,296 square feet, dou­ble the ground level.

Chief ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer Fabrizio Stroppa en­thused about Ba­cioc­chi's “im­me­di­ate un­der­stand­ing of the dreams the creative di­rec­tors had about the store. He re­al­ized in the phys­i­cal space what they had in mind,” said Stroppa, who joined the com­pany in Oc­to­ber.

Coc­cinelle is lev­er­ag­ing Stroppa's years of ex­pe­ri­ence at Coach, where he held the role of vice pres­i­dent of sales, Europe, and at Mul­berry, where he served as global head of sales. Prior to that, Stroppa was brand man­ager at Donna Karan in the LVMH Moët Hen­nessy Louis Vuit­ton head­quar­ters in Ja­pan. He has also worked at Gior­gio Ar­mani.

The flag­ship is a gift for Coc­cinelle's

40th birth­day, said Stroppa, and marks the first step in a process of ex­pan­sion of the brand. It brings Coc­cinelle to a to­tal of 160 stores world­wide. The of­fi­cial cut­ting of the rib­bon for the store will be held on Dec. 8, which is an im­por­tant fes­tiv­ity for Mi­lan, as it cel­e­brates Sant'Am­bro­gio, the city's pa­tron saint Am­brose.

Up next is the ren­o­va­tion of the Coc­cinelle store on Re­gent Street in Lon­don in 2019. Next year, the com­pany is plan­ning to roll out 25 new stores in China, but the first step is a unit in Guangzhou due to open on Dec. 21.

New head­quar­ters will be cel­e­brated in Fe­bru­ary dur­ing Mi­lan Fash­ion Week as Coc­cinelle will move to a 14,040-square­foot space in a his­tor­i­cal palazzo in Mi­lan.

Coc­cinelle was founded in 1978 in Sala Ba­ganza, near Parma, Italy, by the Mazz­ieri fam­ily. In 2012, the Korean E-Land fund ac­quired the com­pany and the Mazz­ieri fam­ily ex­ited.

Coc­cinelle is ex­pected to re­port sales of al­most 100 mil­lion eu­ros in 2018, up from 65 mil­lion eu­ros three years ago, and Stroppa said the plan is to dou­ble the 2018 fig­ure in three years.

The new Coc­cinelle flag­ship in Mi­lan.

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