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LES FACETTES: a boutique dedicated to niche brands

by Serge Maillard



LES FACETTES: a boutique dedicated to niche brands

22 April 2016

Standing against the tide of vertical integration currently sweeping the luxury industry, the new Geneva boutique Les Facettes is offering hand crafted products at affordable prices. It hopes to attract clients who want to express their individuality with exclusive products. It’s a bold wager. We went to take a look around.

LES FACETTES: a boutique dedicated to niche brands

Nestled between Geneva’s upmarket Rue du Rhône and the more democratic Rue du Marché, the new jewellery boutique Les Facettes mirrors its geographical location and lives up to its name. It offers a wide range of products, from the affordable to the ultra-exclusive, from CHF 1,000 to a million, from bracelets to cufflinks.

Open since September 2015, it now represents nine jewellery and accessory designers, for most of whom it is the sole agent in Switzerland: GB Enigma, Wendy Yue, Masterstrokes, Mattia Cielo, Scavia, Roxalana, Thee Wild, Bao Bao Wan Fine Jewellery and Michele Della Valle (see our selection). “In the future, it will vary; we may have seven or eleven brands. Our concept is to be a living boutique, a salon, a cultural space that can also welcome special guest stars for short periods,” explains Vivien Yakopin, who was entrusted with the task of developing the shop by her Swiss investors.

From right to left and top to bottom: Wendy Yue, Thee Wild, Scavia, Michele Della Valle, Mattia Cielo, GB Enigma, Masterstrokes, Roxalana, Bao Bao Wan Fine Jewellery
From right to left and top to bottom: Wendy Yue, Thee Wild, Scavia, Michele Della Valle, Mattia Cielo, GB Enigma, Masterstrokes, Roxalana, Bao Bao Wan Fine Jewellery

How have your four months been? “I’ve been amazed by the number of customers. We began making major sales from the first day we opened. Local clients tend to go for more affordable items compared with foreign customers. That’s the Swiss spirit – they’re pragmatic and don’t like to show off, and that translates to jewellery for everyday wear. In any case, our choice of products seems to have hit the right note.”

MADE-TO-MEASURE IS THE WAY TO GO

Vivien Yakopin has observed a growing demand for unique pieces and limited editions. Although the brands she represents are not the most well-known names in the industry, their designs are quite unique. “We don’t want to turn up at a cocktail party and find everyone’s wearing the same necklace! Luxury these days is not so much about price, it’s about rarity.” Having worked for major companies including Sotheby’s and Van Cleef & Arpels, the manager is now staking her reputation on niche products and smaller brands.

“The general trend is still for vertical integration. We want to offer the opposite: small brands and personalised service, which sets us apart from groups that own fifty different brands and have armies of designers. It’s the niche of the future. We’re seeing more and more demand for bespoke products, not just in jewellery but in cars and shoes, for example.”

That explains the choice of brands present: they are often built around a single person, a creator or artist like Michele Della Valle, with whom it is possible have a direct link, a one-on-one conversation. Another criterion is originality, both aesthetic and technical, such as in Mattia Cielo’s complex rings or the Roxalana necklaces that can easily be shortened or converted into bracelets. Every brand offers made-to-measure products, whether the client wants to start from a blank sheet of paper or merely swap an emerald for a ruby. The boutique caters for children too, offering baby jewellery.

LES FACETTES

Rue du Rhône 40, 1204 Geneva, Switzerland

www.lesfacettes.com

Les Facettes enriches its range of activities by also buying jewellery - 25 February 2016
Les Facettes exhibits the works of Maestro Enrico Cirio - 11 January 2016



 

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