Skip to content
subscribe
Account
SEARCH

Categories

LASTEST

Design Holding.

Design Holding CEO Daniel Lalonde Shares Details on Its New Flagship

The CEO of Design Holding shares with Whitewall details behind its latest store on Madison Avenue and where he predicts the future of the industry is.

On March 7 in New York City, Design Holding opened a new world-class flagship at 135 Madison Avenue. Its collection of iconic brands—B&B Italia, Flos, Louis Poulsen, Maxalto, Arclinea, and Azucena—can now be experienced under one roof, with new items and signature designs spanning 25,000 square feet across two floors. 

Design Holding.

Courtesy of Design Holding.

Divided into distinct sections of the store, each brand showcased its diverse products in individual vignettes, while cohesively adding to an alluring, complete atmosphere. Here, European heritage design and esteemed craftsmanship blend to meet the modern-day consumer with a thoughtful and holistic shopping experience. 

Design Holding.

Courtesy of Design Holding.

“The opening of our flagship on 135 Madison Avenue stands as a statement for Design Holding, the first of its kind in New York City—a distinctive destination uniting the finest in Italian and Nordic design,” said Daniel Lalonde, CEO of Design Holding since 2021. “Our ecosystem of iconic brands excels in innovation, craftsmanship, and design services, catering to diverse needs from residential to bespoke contract projects. This space offers a captivating experience, showcasing the creativity and excellence that define our heritage. The American market is key for us and New York is our chosen city to present the dialogue across our brands creating unprecedented creative and business synergies.”

Lalonde—whose background spans key leadership roles in fashion, spirits, and more—shared with Whitewall details on the brand-new Madison Avenue destination, how the future of design is ripe for global growth, and why his purpose is designing for a beautiful life.

Design Holding.

Portrait of Daniel Lalonde by Mattia Zoppellaro / Contrasto, courtesy of Design Holding.

Design Holding on Madison Avenue

WHITEWALL: Design Holding recently opened its new NYC flagship. Why now, on Madison Avenue? What about this space is special?

DANIEL LALONDE: The multi-brand flagship store in New York, on 135 Madison Avenue, is a project we have been working on for several years and we are very excited to have recently opened its doors. This project is a pillar of our U.S. strategy and the manifestation of our purpose: we design for a beautiful life. This flagship store reimagines how to present a singular destination as a group, while preserving individual company identities that all have a shared purpose.

The ground floor of the new flagship was a B&B Italia store, which opened in September 2016, and we since had the wonderful opportunity of integrating the ground floor to the first floor to create what we believe to be a one-of-a-kind destination, showcasing B&B Italia, FLOS, Louis Poulsen, Maxalto, Arclinea, and Azucena brands.

This space is special as it invites customers, architects, and designers alike to experience a flawless journey of our iconic brands, coexisting under one roof, generating unprecedented creative synergies, whilst each preserving their individual brand identity.

Design Holding.

Courtesy of Design Holding.

Uniting Italian and Nordic Design

WW: How do Design Holding’s labels represent what’s best about Italian and Nordic design and craftsmanship?

DL: Our brands unite the finest of Nordic and Italian design. Our collaboration with the world’s leading architects and designers is a testament to our commitment to excellence and innovation. By heavily investing in research and development, we ensure that our products not only meet but exceed the highest standards of design and functionality. Our unique manufacturing capabilities are rooted in our factories located in Italy, Spain, and Denmark, where craftsmanship is infused with cutting-edge technology. This strategic blend allows our designs to represent excellence from every perspective, showcasing unparalleled quality, innovation, and aesthetic appeal.

In our pursuit of sustainability, we are diligently working towards incorporating eco-friendly materials and processes across our operations, ensuring that our production methods not only preserve but enhance the environment.

Our ecosystem of iconic brands stands at the forefront of innovation, craftsmanship, and design services. We are dedicated to meeting the diverse needs of our clients, ranging from residential to custom-made contract projects. Our objective is to empower our brands to expand their global footprint, enhancing their reach and scale. This commitment ensures that Design Holding’s brands continue setting new benchmarks for quality and innovation in the design world.

Design Holding.

Courtesy of Design Holding.

WW: Your history in the field is expansive, with roles in brands like Louis Vuitton, Ralph Lauren, and Moët & Chandon. How would you describe good design, regardless of whether it’s for a chair, a coat, a handbag, or a bottle of champagne?

DL: There are many similarities between luxury fashion and high-end design brands: craftsmanship, product innovation, sustainability, and heritage are some of the key ingredients for good design. Furthermore, the customers are the same, who shop across categories. We invest heavily in research and development and seek to collaborate with the world’s best architects and designers as well as new talents to have an increasingly rich and unique product change. Needless to say, quality and long-lasting design are also key.

Design Holding.

Courtesy of Design Holding.

Creating an Emotional Connection Through Design

WW: From 2006–2010, you were the CEO of Louis Vuitton North America. During that time, you turned it into the number-one luxury brand on the market. What is the “special sauce” in making a brand successful? 

DL: At Design Holding, brand desirability and creating an emotional connection with customers. We have a clear roadmap and a strong ambition to continue to be the leading group in luxury design. We are doing this through pursuing a clear strategy to grow our business, aimed at enhancing brand appeal by creating products that embody the pinnacle of luxury and innovation. Our approach to making our offerings highly desirable involves a blend of unique design elements, unmatched quality, and the infusion of contemporary trends with timeless elegance. Scaling our brands to achieve global reach is key to our strategy, enabling us to cater to diverse consumer bases. Pursuing our direct-to-consumer journey through DOS and e-commerce allows us to get closer to our customers and create more personalized and engaging shopping experiences, fostering stronger connections with them. Another important pillar for Design Holding is enhancing leadership in high-end contract business by focusing on segments such as hospitality, residential, retail, and public spaces, demonstrating our brand’s versatility and our ability to create luxury experiences across a variety of settings.

Design Holding.

Courtesy of Design Holding.

Design Holding’s Biggest Markets

WW: What is your fastest-growing market right now?

DL: We have several high growth markets where our brands enjoy success but also regions where we are pioneering the overall high-end design industry like China and the U.S. The Middle East is a region which we believe has a very high potential for growth, especially in the explosive contract channel.  

WW: Is there something you’re focusing on internally at the moment?

DL: We are focusing on strengthening our leadership; positioning and developing an omnichannel strategy for our brands to deliver a seamless and consistent customer experience across all touchpoints and ultimately put the customer first and foremost. We do not exclude, for the future, the entry of new companies to enrich our portfolio if we identify a brand that can complement our portfolio and where we see further value creation opportunity. 

Design Holding.

Courtesy of Design Holding.

The Future of Design

WW: Design is changing. Where do you think the future of the industry is?

DL: We are firmly convinced that the design industry possesses significant potential for growth, particularly through the globalization of our diverse brands and our strategic objective of fostering closer connections with our customers worldwide, via all channels, including DOS, mono-brand, SIS, Contract, and E-commerce. The online channel is still nascent in our industry hence it has untapped growth potential. This industry will be more global and more customer-focused, just like the journey that fashion luxury brands undertook years ago.

​​

SAME AS TODAY

FURTHER READING

8 Young Designers to Watch for in Milan This Week

Milan Design Week is about to debut its latest chapter, and within it, a spotlight on the novel and the next—including the young designers.

Studio PCH Shares the Private Design Details Behind the Nobu Ryokan Malibu

Whitewall spoke with Nobu Ryokan about its design for Nobu Ryokan Malibu.

SUBSCRIBE TO MAGAZINE

Kelly Wearstler

THE WINTER EXPERIENCE ISSUE
2023

Subscribe

SUBSCRIBE TO NEWSLETTER

Go inside the worlds of Art, Fashion, Design and Lifestyle.

READ THIS NEXT

Milan Design Week is about to debut its latest chapter, and within it, a spotlight on the novel and the next—including the young designers.
Whitewall spoke with Nobu Ryokan about its design for Nobu Ryokan Malibu.

SUBSCRIBE TO NEWSLETTER

Go inside the worlds
of Art, Fashion, Design,
and Lifestyle.