Images: Chanel Opens New Miami Design District Flagship

In late May of 2020 WWD was reporting – sadly prematurely – that Miami’s Design District had decisively reopened after the initial COVID quarantines, and that developer Craig Robins’ vision of a destination characterized by major fashion flagships was continuing apace.

It’s been a rollercoaster since then, obviously, with the citizens of Florida especially getting caught up in the political crossfire of the virus regulations. But as we limp into 2022, and despite the Omicron variant’s best efforts to once again derail our attempts at regaining some sense of normality, extravagant retail spaces are once again opening up in major cities (Fendi in New York, Burberry in London, etc.). Chanel, notably, is closing out the year by having just thrown open the doors on a spectacular new flagship in the aforementioned Design District, just in time for picking out those glamorous New Year’s Eve outfits – even if going out this December 31 will again involve a certain degree of social distancing. (Honestly, we highly recommend dressing up even if you’re staying home – as we’ve all certainly earned that much.)

Coming in at 7600 square feet and spread over two stories, Chanel has gone especially ambitious with this one. And so the exalted French fashion house could hardly have trusted the project to anyone but Peter Marino, their most distinguished design collaborator, who also counts the likes of Dior, Armani, Fendi and Louis Vuitton amongst his clients. Setting aside any maximalist impulses (he does have a few), the facade is clean white stucco, and interiors are of the mostly stark black and white variety, decisively putting the focus on the clothes – which are arranged with an almost architectural precision. A grand staircase is partially lit by a dramatic skylight, which also illuminates the boutique’s open shopping spaces, allowing each to soak up as much of the illustrious Miami sunshine as possible.

The new flagship debuts with the Chanel 2021/22 Cruise Collection, and going forward will carry every season of ready-to-wear, as well as shoes, handbags, eyewear and fine jewelry. Oh, and in between flipping through the racks, one can admire artworks by Chris Succo, Gregor Hildebrandt and our favorite German multimedia experimentalist Vera Lutter.

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