Italian brand bolsters its retail position in the U.S. with company stores.
Furla brought blossoms and butterflies to fete its one and only Florida store. The Bologna, Italy-based accessories brand and its chief executive officer of the Americas, Scott Link, hosted back-to-back events on July 12: a brunch at its new, nearly 1,200-square-foot location in Aventura Mall, and a sit-down dinner with a flower stand for press and influencers to make their own bouquets at Soho Beach House. The summery theme referenced pre-fall 2018’s women’s bags printed and embellished with florals and butterflies from studs to leather appliqués.
“Our DNA is grounded in quality, colorful creativity, joyfulness and an Italian lifestyle — all of which will resonate with Floridians,” said Alberto Camerlengo, ceo of the Furla Group, of reentering the strong market. (The company previously operated at the Shops at Merrick Park in Coral Gables, Fla.) “We found the perfect location at Aventura Mall. The area has a robust local and tourist economy. We are always looking for optimal locations.”
Furla’s sixth full-price store in the U.S. opens at South Coast Plaza in Costa Mesa, Calif., in September. It will feature the new store design prototype of durmast oak accented with Champagne-colored metal, which debuted at Aventura. There’s also a yearlong pop-up in the Forum Shops at Caesars in Las Vegas.
Camerlengo said business has been brisk at Miami wholesale accounts including Saks Fifth Avenue and Bloomingdale’s. Customers are responding to pre-fall’s Mughetto top handle bag and Metropolis S crossbody; hands-free looks, and day-to-night, convertible styles. Aventura carries the full assortment encompassing scarves, jewelry, key rings and men’s leather accessories but isn’t considered a flagship like the Fifth Avenue location in New York. Located on Aventura Mall’s upper level, the store is flanked by Kiehl’s and Coach and sits across from Swarovski and Chanel.
“The state as a whole is enjoying population growth, and the Miami area is among the fastest-growing, multicultural cities in the U.S. We want to be part of this growth,” said Camerlengo, who sees similarities between South Florida and Southern California. “Furla has wholesale accounts in the Los Angeles area, but this will be our first store in California. We are a global brand, and it was so important for us to have a freestanding store on the West Coast.”