The runway show marks the Italian luxury brand’s first return to China’s capital city in 11 years. In 2011, Prada revisited its men’s and women’s spring 2012 collection with added new styles at Beijing’s Central Academy of Fine Arts museum. The same year, Prada went public on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange.
The fall 2022 collection will be shown at Prince Jun’s Mansion, a courtyard hotel in downtown Beijing in the traditional Chinese style, which was formerly the residence of Prince Jun in the Qing dynasty.
“Prince Jun’s Mansion seemed the perfect setting to celebrate once again our ongoing dialogue and commitment to Chinese culture that we have pursued with different activities throughout the years,” Prada co-creative directors Miuccia Prada and Raf Simons said in a press release.
Despite COVID-19-related travel restrictions, the brand sought out creative methods to bring its runway shows to China, one of the brand’s key markets. China sales were up 56 percent compared with 2019 for the 12 months ended Dec. 31. Last September, Prada showcased its women’s spring 2022 ready-to-wear collection simultaneously on catwalks in Milan and Shanghai, a first in fashion history.
In June 2019, Prada skipped Milan Fashion Week to showcase its men’s spring 2020 collection in Shanghai. Minsheng Wharf, the 80,000-ton warehouse, was transformed by OMA/AMO into a neon-lit space with ’80s synth-filled soundscape for the event.
In September 2017, Prada restaged its resort 2018 collection at Rongzhai, the restored historic mansion in Shanghai.
Prada’s Beijing runway show next week will go live at a critical time for the country. The capital city and economic hub is cautious to stick to its Zero-COVID policy ahead of the Communist Party National Congress later this year, when President Xi Jinping is expected to secure an unprecedented third term.
Beijing started easing COVID-19-related restrictions in June, but maintained regular testing every three days for people to enter public venues.
Prada might be the only luxury brand to host a physical runway show in China this year. So far, no luxury brands have hosted a physical fashion show in the country, and according to local PR agencies, none have revealed plans to host offline screening events or large runway shows in China for the rest of the year.