TIFFANY TO OPEN IN ROME
Byline: Wendy Hessen / Marc Karimzadeh
NEW YORK — Romans will soon be able to take their cappuccinos and swing on their Vespas for a ride to Tiffany & Co.
That’s because America’s renowned jeweler is planning to open a store in the Italian capital this fall. The Rome store will be located on Via del Babuino directly across the street from Chanel near the Piazza di Spagna and the famous Spanish Steps. It will consist of about 4,400 square feet of retail space over two levels.
Although Tiffany’s famed Fifth Avenue flagship is about to undergo its most extensive facelift in the store’s 60-year history, the new unit will feature design elements of the original store, including cherrywood interiors and stainless steel detailing on showcase and vitrines.
The offering will include designs by Tiffany veterans Elsa Peretti, Paloma Picasso and Jean Schlumberger, as well as fine and engagement jewelry, including Lucida, Tiffany’s patented engagement ring, and an assortment of Tiffany & Co. gifts.
“The opening of a Tiffany & Co. store in Rome is an important occasion for us,” said James E. Quinn, the company’s vice chairman. “Rome has a rich history of art and architecture and is the capital of a country renowned for style and design innovation.”
This is the third Italian store for Tiffany, after Milan and Florence. In Europe, the company also has stores in London, Zurich, Frankfurt, Munich and Paris. The plans for a Rome store fall in line with Tiffany’s U.S. retail expansion plans, with stores slated to open this summer in Westfield Shop-pingtown Valley Fair in San Jose, Calif., and at the International Plaza in Tampa.
Tiffany also recently unveiled plans for its first store in South America. In May, the company is slated to open a 4,600-square-foot unit in Sao Paulo, Brazil’s upscale Iguatemi Shopping Center.
Few firms have attempted to move into South America, largely because of the still fairly steep import taxes, which Quinn acknowledged and said “can’t be passed along to the consumer.” However, he said Brazil is “a huge market, the ninth-largest economy in the world, with a sophisticated customer and great demand for luxury products.
“Sao Paulo is the most important city in South America, and we thought that’s where we should start,” he added. “We have a long-term view [of the region] and, while this first store may not immediately be a home run, it will be the first store in a five-to-10-year strategy.”
The Sao Paulo unit, which will have mall and street entrances, also will have a similar assortment to many of Tiffany’s international locations, which carry less in china and crystal in favor of more jewelry, silver and gifts.