WWD.com/media-news/retail-features/grand-plans-for-gucci-s-manhattan-opening-476655/
government-trade
government-trade

Grand Plans for Gucci’s Manhattan Opening

Gucci will open its biggest store in the world on Fifth Avenue and 56th Street here in February, and to fete the occasion, the brand is promising its biggest event ever.

NEW YORK — Gucci will open its biggest store in the world on Fifth Avenue and 56th Street here in February, and to fete the occasion, the brand is promising its biggest event ever.

On Feb. 6, Gucci will team up with Madonna to throw a fund-raiser for Raising Malawi, which the singer cofounded, and UNICEF. The brand’s creative director Frida Giannini will serve as the evening’s co-chair.

Madonna and Giannini will be joined as co-chairs by Salma Hayek and her fiancé, PPR chief executive officer François-Henri Pinault, Sting and wife Trudie Styler, Gwyneth Paltrow, Adrien Brody, Téa Leoni, Lucy Liu, Demi Moore and Ashton Kutcher, financier Arpad Busson and economist and Columbia University professor Jeffrey Sachs.

“I am grateful that Gucci is joining forces with me to bring attention to a country with millions of children in desperate need of our help,” Madonna said. “Raising Malawi has already done tremendous work in helping these children.”

The night will consist of dinner, followed by a guest speaker, musical performance and an after party; all details are undisclosed.

“We are honored to have Madonna host this very special event with us, celebrating the opening of our New York Fifth Avenue flagship while generating funds for Raising Malawi and UNICEF,” Mark Lee, ceo of Gucci, which is the event’s sole underwriter, said.

Gucci and Madonna are reuniting in their fight against AIDS. In 1997, the company held a fund-raiser for AIDS Project Los Angeles, for which Madonna served as honorary co-chair. Gucci has also been corporate partner to UNICEF since 2004, resulting in several special holiday campaigns benefiting UNICEF programs in Malawi and Mozambique. For this holiday season, Giannini again created a special edition Gucci for UNICEF bag.

This story first appeared in the November 15, 2007 issue of WWD.  Subscribe Today.