The Armani Group announced today that it will open its first Armani Casa store in Switzerland in November 2004. The Armani Casa store will be located in Brandschenkenstrasse 132, covers over 200 square metres and will be owned and operated by Colombo La Famiglia AG under a franchise agreement with the Armani Group.
Inspired by modern loft design, the store is partitioned off using black vertical grid elements for spatial definition in the various areas. The lightweight structures, with a see-through effect, nevertheless afford an overall perception of the space. These areas, juxtaposed in a smooth sequence, are defined at floor level by strips of steel or black Plexiglas as an aid in focusing on the product and in giving the set an atmosphere of sophisticated elegance.
The large illuminated wall images, replaced regularly, are core elements in the Armani Casa collection, the hi-tech effect toned down by placing natural gauze over the picture to create hazy edges for a softer result. The suffused light, never flat or harsh and carefully balanced between the ceiling spotlights and the lamps in the collection, is adjusted to accent the pure shape of an item of furniture, the softness of a fabric or the special features of an object, a crucial factor in putting across the idea of formal elegance and sophisticated mood.
Accessories, an integral part of the furniture set, are also exhibited on the display wall. This wall, with its simple structure of vertical raffia-covered panels with straight aluminium shelves, focuses attention on the product displayed.
Armani Casa is a comprehensive and significant home collection, featuring much more than just home accessories and fabric furnishings. Instead Giorgio Armani has concentrated on creating a complete line including furniture, tableware, lighting, linens and decorative objects. The collection is neither minimalist nor trendy. It is neither decoration nor design, but rather a combination of the two. The collection's roots lie in simplicity and purity, practical shapes, luxury materials and fabrics and craftsmanship from around the world. The idea is sophisticated comfort, which is at the heart of Armani's fashion philosophy.
Giorgio Armani says, “I undertook a huge project, knowing that it would be both risky and personally challenging. I asked myself, %u2018What can I do that is rooted in design, yet different. That is modern yet contains references to the past, and has my signature?' I found the answer in my fashion philosophy and the beginning of my career as a designer, when I created the Armani suit, which was a classic, basic suit but cut in a fresh, new way.”
The Armani Casa Collection is currently available in 17 free-standing stores around the world; Milano (Italy, 2 stores), Paris (France), Munich (Germany), Marbella (Spain), Athens (Greece), Nicosia (Cyprus), Istanbul (Turkey), Moscow (Russia), New York (USA), Los Angeles (USA), Shanghai (China), Hong Kong (China), Seoul (Korea), Taipei (Taiwan), Jeddah (Saudi Arabia), Riyadh (Saudi Arabia) as well as select Giorgio Armani boutiques and specialised showrooms, while a new opening will include Kuwait City (Kuwait) on December 15th.