Maison Assouline on London’s Piccadilly got a regal inauguration on Tuesday night with Valentino Garavani signing his new book, “Valentino: At the Emperor’s Table.”
The Assouline tome, which has an introduction by André Leon Talley, shows how Garavani has turned his eye to designing his residences and hosting gatherings at them. During the evening, Garavani noted that his approach to entertaining isn’t so different from his approach to design. “I told [Assouline] it was not very far from my evening gowns and my creations — it’s joyful beauty,” he said of his inspiration.
The designer also noted that he had put together all the recipes in the book “because I love good food, especially organic food.” He’s headed to New York later this week to sign books at the new Valentino boutique on Fifth Avenue, he added. “I have stopped designing [clothing], but I’m always involved in a certain way. I have thousands of things that they ask me [to do],” he said. “I’m not comfortable to stay home and to be quiet. I’m always doing something.”
Guests at the launch included Roland Mouret, Anne Hathaway, Princess Marie-Chantal of Greece and Prosper Assouline. Nicky Haslam said he admires Garavani’s eye for interiors. “What’s good about his taste in interiors is that it’s got a bit of an edge. [His interiors have] the prettiness of his clothes, but with a bit of an edge to it,” Haslam said. Mouret, meanwhile, was marveling at the grand, wood-paneled walls of Assouline’s new maison.
“It’s Paris in London,” said the designer. “Only Prosper could think to do books this way. He has a way of editing books that makes them like beautiful objects.”