#LuxuryWatch: Cucinelli, Silence as Luxury, LVMH, Vanquish Zagato

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Brunello Cucinelli

The week’s news and views on luxury from Rebecca Robins, Interbrand Director EMEA LatAm and Meta-luxury co-author.

The FT Business of Luxury Summit took place in San Francisco this week under the aegis of “Creative Synergies”. The hard narrative, however, is brought into focus by Thomas Chauvet at Citi: “Luxury is no longer capable of 5% growth: retail expansion is ending. Companies must adjust business models”.

How luxury businesses sustain growth within the perfect storm that is ever encroaching is the big question, and it will involve some seismic shifts as brands rebalance the traditional purview of product with levels of access, service and experience.

There is a re-evaluation of what we value and why that we haven’t seen since 2009, and we know that authenticity, purpose and a brand’s commitment to society and the world can make or break consumer choice. One of the most compelling speakers at the Summit was Brunello Cucinelli, founder of a €1.2 billion (US$1.34 billion) business based on his philosophy of “humane capitalism”. As brands redefine categories and sectors, this is a beautiful example of a brand that is building and sustaining a community, investing in the unique knowledge and skills behind his creations—and hitting double-digit growth in the process.

An inspiring insight into a meta-luxury brand that is achieving growth through the symbiosis of a culture and economy of purpose-driven excellence. Here’s to the visionaries behind the brands that are making a real difference.

Across Europe, LVMH  threw open the doors last weekend as part of its annual Journées Particulières, #JPLVMH offering unique access to the artists and processes behind the creation of some of their brands.

LVMH Journees Particulieres

LVMH Journees Particulieres

A thing of beauty… Let’s just take a moment, as Aston Martin unveils the Vanquish Zagato against the languid backdrop of Lake Como. And if you were wondering about the story behind the name, Zagato is the eponymous tribute to Ugo Zagato, who was behind the DB4 GT at the very beginning of the Aston Martin relationship in 1960, as his grandson now carries forward the heritage.

Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato

It’s no surprise that silence has become a luxury experience as two new hotels in Japan offer total tranquility.

Japan Hotel

Along with “luxury” the word “iconic” has also become diluted through overuse and misuse. Either we invest words with meaning or we change the lexicon.


Rebecca Robins is Regional Director, EMEA LatAm at Interbrand and co-author of the book Meta-luxury. Beats and tweets: @robins_rebecca

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