PARIS — Since it launched in 2009, the name Rivieras has become synonymous with essentially one style: the laid-back loafer in cotton and mesh. Inspired by a Spanish classic — the espadrille — the shoe got a more mature look through an elevated back sole and a more elegant shape, taking cues from the moccasin.
“We were both in our late 30s and we just didn’t feel like dressing in streetwear, so we made the Rivieras for ourselves, and it wasn’t long before our friends started asking for a pair,” explained Fabrizio Corveddu, who set up the label with his cousin, Dan Amzallag.
Amzallag, whose background includes stints at Calvin Klein and Swatch, is the man behind Rivieras’ quirky branding: each pair comes in a narrow rectangular box of a different color; when stacked together — ceiling-high — the mini-packages create a pixelated image or mosaic that has become germane to Rivieras’ retail concept. The brand currently boasts four flagships — in Paris, Ibiza, Jakarta and St. Barths — in addition to some 800 wholesale accounts, including Colette and Dover Street Market, which have stocked the collection from the first season.
Its most ambitious project yet is to be a store in Shanghai — slated to open in May and meant to change its look every three to four months. The store will be accompanied by a capsule line in matching colors that will also feature small accessories such as hats and clutches, as the label is slowly moving away from strictly seasonal collections.
“We want Rivieras to be a timeless classic rather than a fashion product. With 300,000 pairs it’s still niche, but that’s because we want organic growth,” which stood at 30 percent last season, according to Corveddu.
The shoes retail between 60 euros, or $67, and 85 euros, or $95.
Also new this year are high-top Rivieras, or “Montante,” resembling laid-back ankle boots; a line of waterproof rain boots, and vinyl tuxedo loafers dubbed “le Smoking.”