Well, it technically wasn't an entire summer in Italy. Only a single week that just so happened to be the hottest week of the summer. Which probably made it feel a bit longer than it actually was. Our goal on this trip was to dive deeper with existing brands, explore new relationships, and finally to inspect recent work.
We arrived in Milan via JFK after a few important meetings in Manhattan. We checked into the TK Hotel in the Brera Design District. After a quick nap, we began to be tourists for the remainder of the day. Did we mention it was hot?
Our week started with a deeper dive into CEA DESIGN, a high-end contemporary kitchen and bath plumbing company based here in Italy. We explored more in-depth technical information about the stainless steel manufacturing process that allows for indoor/outdoor use that is perfect for our West Coast and Hawai’i lifestyles. With CEA, the plumbing can be consistent throughout the entire home, in the standard and specialty finishes.
After a delicious lunch, hello typical Milano risotto, we reviewed the three new bathroom and outdoor shower pieces that were launched during Salone de Mobile in April 2018.
We ventured east on a 3 hour train ride to Pordenone to visit with Valcucine. The day was spend exploring Valcucine’s diverse brand offering for the modern American kitchen. Their signature mix of glass, wood, and stone materials fit well with the San Francisco lifestyle.
A short one hour train ride to Padova to meet with Rossato, our high-end contemporary furniture company, had a few unexpected surprises. After meeting the team and touring the Rossato factory, we were treated with a visit to one of the best metal finishers in all of Italy. Think Fendi, Gucci, Prada, and Ferrari. Oh, and a few Knoll custom pieces too.
METAL FACTORY TOUR
And as if the day couldn’t get any better or hotter, we were asked to preview the new Rossato Home collection with a trip to Venice. A 30 minutes drive into Venice and a short water taxi landed in the city. A short walk to Rubelli (avail at Donghia in the SFDC) and we were pulling fabrics for our showroom pieces.
After a few hours on the train, we landed in Florence for the evening. It was quite late but still warm out, so our inner tourist went exploring.
THURSDAY & FRIDAY
Road tripping to Siena. An hour and a half car ride down the countryside to Vaselli’s factory was the path. Upon arrival, we begin the inspection of two custom pieces for the Los Angeles design firm, name of firm, and a single Vaselli T180 Table for a Nicole Hollis project.
We spent our last full day with Vaselli reviewing new products coming to the market in Fall 2018 and Winter 2019. After a road trip back to Florence and a train transfer to Milan, some nice R&R before an early morning flight back to NYC.