Women’s Wear Daily
04.16.2014
fashion-features
fashion-features

Dolce & Gabbana’s Fairy-Tale Flagship

With their sprawling new women’s flagship in Milan, Dolce and Gabbana are unveiling a new retail concept and embracing a kind of egalitarian luxe.

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The new flagship at Via Della Spiga

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Photo By WWD Staff

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Photo By Mauricio Miranda

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MILAN — Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana have a larger canvas on which to project their fashion fairy tale.

With their sprawling new women’s flagship here, Dolce and Gabbana aren’t just unveiling a new retail concept, they’re embracing a kind of egalitarian luxe. Located at 26 Via Della Spiga, just doors down from their original store, the 11,800-square-foot space may stock everything from jeans to $100,000 one-of-a-kind pieces in the by-appointment-only VIP room, but its purpose, according to the duo, is to offer the same thing to women of all budgets.

“Fashion is a dream. Fashion is luxury and when a woman goes to buy fashion — actually, when we all go to shop — we want, even if it’s just for a moment, to dream that we’re in a fairy tale,” Dolce told WWD during an exclusive preview of the store last week.

“It doesn’t matter if it’s a tank top or an incredibly special piece, the approach is the same. At that moment, you’re buying a dream.”

An in-store cafe, along with some dozen handmade black Murano glass chandeliers, enclosed Sicilian garden atria and fitting rooms covered entirely in mirrors, create a high-gloss fantasy with a palpable Dolce & Gabbana imprint.

In fact, the duo’s signature gray balsatina stone floor is the only matte surface in the store. Mirrored mannequins are sprinkled throughout, some lounging across long, black, glass fixtures, others positioned next to chain-link curtains that cascade over windows. Marble is sparingly used to frame cash register areas and thresholds, while big gold Ds and Gs serve as door handles.

“We want to give women a sense of luxury,” Gabbana said. “A real sensation of something superluxurious, something that makes one dream.”

The space until recently housed two separate Dolce & Gabbana stores, accessories and vintage, and from the street, they still appear as two distinct units with individual entrances. The combined stores now have eight windows on the Via Della Spiga, creating a dominant space in one of Milan’s prime shopping streets for the $675 million company, which last year had pretax profits of $102.1 million.
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