Global diversification. Emotional engagement. Luxury fashion brands are increasingly aligning themselves with experiential hospitality. The media focuses on the star-studded catwalk show and the individual designer’s celebrity and genius. Yet the typical elite fashion house is really a giant corporation. One whose profit derives from the mass production, marketing and consumption of ready-to-wear clothing and accessories.
And thus, many luxury fashion brands are reinventing themselves. Branching out into delivery of the full lifestyle package. Through hotels, where such packages can be put on display and sold to guests, and through lifestyle experiences. Take a look at these 7 luxury fashion brands that have branched into experiential hospitality.
Palazzo Versace, Queensland
Opened in Australia in 2000, the Palazzo Versace Queensland is credited as being one of the world’s first fashion brand hotels. With an exclusive waterfront setting on the Gold Coast, the hotel features spectacular architecture, opulent accommodations, and a design distinguished by Versace bespoke furnishings. The chandelier in the foyer of the Palazzo Versace once hung in the State Library of Milan and was originally purchased by Gianni Versace to place in one of his homes. More than $11.5 million worth of marble was imported from Carra in Italy and the driveway mosaic is the second largest in the world.
A wide range of items from bathrobes to bedheads, all on display and for the use of guests, are also for sale through the lobby shop. However, in this case, the initiative did not come from the Versace organization itself. Palazzo Versace was the brainchild of Gold Coast-based Sunland Group. From the Versace perspective, it was a new step in the journey towards globalization and diversification from the purveyors of high-end designer fashion.
Audemars Piguet, Hotel des Horlogers
Authenticity, harmony, ingenuity and liberation. These are the values of luxury Swiss watchmaker Audemars Piguet. And the Hotel des Horlogers offers guests all this in the shape of luxurious accommodations. Originally built in 1857, this historic hotel was purchased by Audemars Piguet in 2003. It was renamed “Hôtel des Horlogers” in tribute to the know-how of the watchmakers in the surrounding La Vallée de Joux.
The hotel aims to break down the boundaries between nature and architecture, creating a space of harmony. In the true essence of Audemars Piguet, one of the world’s leading luxury fashion brands, the spirit of innovation inspired by watchmaking roots extends to the architecture and overall guest experience. The hotel features its own watch exhibition and the opportunity to visit the nearby Audemars Piguet watchmaker’s museum. It might lead you to place your name on the list for one of these distinguished timepieces.
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Armani Hotels, Milan & Dubai
The exclusive collection of Armani Hotels & Resorts are styled to reflect elegance, simplicity and sophisticated comfort. Designed in collaboration with Mr. Giorgio Armani and his in-house interior design team, the hotel embody his signature style and aesthetic. Each hotel promises “uncompromising attention to detail” and stunning views along with world-class services and award-winning cuisine.
Set in the Armani style, “a way of being and presenting oneself, certainly incorporating clothing and accessories, but also including gestures, ways, behaviors and attitudes; a style that goes beyond the sum of its parts, and well beyond what one wears.” Restaurants offer gourmet dishes created by some of the world’s leading chefs. Luxurious spas offer the ultimate in pampering and relaxation.
Tiffany & Co’s Blue Box Café, Harrods, London
Opened in 2020, on the ground floor of Harrods in London, customers get yet another way to immerse themselves in the world of Tiffany. Guests can literally enjoy Breakfast at Tiffany’s. With afternoon tea and dinner also on the menu. Dine surrounded by Tiffany jewelry, with surroundings that feel like one of the brand’s famed blue boxes. Dishes are served on the Tiffany & Co bone china, as part of a beautiful Tiffany tablescape. For Tiffany & Co, one of the most iconic luxury fashion brands, this makes for an ideal and classy Instagram opportunity.
Have your very own Audrey Hepburn moment and dine on New York-style pancakes dusted with sugar, served with maple syrup, strawberries and whipped vanilla cream. Or try a signature crab muffin, with Cornish crab and cheddar rarebit. Sip on Tiffany cocktails such as Velvet Lychee, with Harrods Brut NV, lychee, egg white and vanilla vodka. Or a White Gold and Rose Gold B, with Harrods Brut NV, rose peach puree and raspberry.
Why not visit whilst in London on our Castles & Kingdoms luxury guided tour?
Dior and Belmond Hotels
In the summer of 2022, the high-end hospitality group Belmond Hotels partnered with Dior to offer a pop-up spa experience on the Italian Riviera. Located in the gardens of Splendido, a Belmond Hotel, in Portofino, the Jardin des Rêves Dior (Dior’s Garden of Dreams) featured two spa treatment spaces offering signature face and body rituals.
Dior’s creative director reimagined the fashion house’s iconic Toile de Jouy fabric to dress up the cabanas. A temporary concept store offered a wide range of clothing options from the fashion house’s Dioriveria capsule collection, as well as the limited Splendido Edition of its Escale à Portofino perfume.
As well as hotels, Belmond leads the way in luxury train travel as owners of the Venice-Simplon Orient Express.
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Ferragamo, the Lungarno Collection
Created by the Ferragamo family the Lungarno Collection consists of seven boutique properties. The Ferragamo footprint runs through all the fashion brand hotels, with five in Florence, one in Rome, and one in Milan. Branded beauty products adorn every bathroom. Picasso and Caravaggio paintings direct from the family’s private collection are displayed on the walls.
Frequented by an international jet-set crowd of art enthusiasts, expect to see fashion seekers and well-heeled weekenders. The Ferragamo family’s values of quality, service and lifestyle permeate every second of your stay.
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Aston Martin and the Waldorf Astoria
Not just luxury fashion brands, high-end car companies too have entered into exclusive partnerships with hotels to expand their market share and cultivate a richer brand image. Waldorf Astoria, for many years has paired with Aston Martin Lagonda to present hotel guests with Aston Martin’s latest models and offer guests VIP hospitality at automobile shows and international races. Tapping into each other’s clientele, exciting driving opportunities were offered at hotels worldwide along with exclusive trackside access at top racing events.
For the ultimate luxury journey, take a look at the Luxury Gold collection of limited edition guided tours.