Image: Louis Vuitton
With the news that Louis Vuitton is opening it’s first restaurant in its Osaka flagship store in Japan and the opening of The Tiffany Blue Box Cafe at Harrod’s in London, it feels inevitable that this is the new normal for luxury fashion brands.
As traditionally retail-only brands expand more in to hospitality and experiences, these iconic fashion houses are rounding out their business models in an age when retailing on the high street is in decline.
And what’s not to love? Dining and staying in spaces as cleverly curated as Bulgari’s hotel in Milan or Ralph Lauren’s restaurant Ralph’s in Paris (read our review here) is a high-end experience that luxury brand lovers will adore. It also gives those who may not be able to afford that LV handbag or Tiffany diamond Atlas ring a chance to experience the brand without forking out the thousands needed to own a piece of it.
LV’s new restaurant will have two dining areas, Le Cafè V with a menu prepared by famed chef Yosuke Sugo and Sugalabo V an ultra-luxe dinner only experience. There will be a bar and terrace for al fresco dining and of course patrons will be mere moments away from LV’s range of designer goods, making it possible to pick up a new LV Speedy bag on the way to dinner.
We can already imagine that dining at LV’s new restaurant will be every young fashion-loving instagrammers dream picture so expect competition for bookings to be fierce.
With Armani, Bulgari and Versace already all in the hotel game and Gucci and Burberry dipping their toes in the water with their own restaurants it is only a matter of time before we see more of these hotels, restaurants and cafes popping up giving luxury lovers a chance to fully immerse themselves in the high-end experience. Who knows, perhaps we may even see a Chanel hotel opening its doors some time soon. In the meantime we are still wondering how they manage to keep their patrons from ‘accidentally’ taking home the branded cutlery and linen..
Louis Vuitton’s restaurant in Osaka opens on February 15. The Tiffany Blue Box Cafe at Harrod’s in London also opens it doors in February, visit here for opening times and booking information.