Bulgari’s eye-catching Pop-Up Corn at ION Orchard is shutting its doors end of the year, but in its place is the long-awaited opening of its latest boutique at the luxury mall. While this is certainly not Singapore’s first, it is currently the only store to be heavily inspired by the brand’s latest muse: its iconic Via Condotti flagship in Rome.

It is also significant to note that the 230-square-metre space is designed by renowned American architect Peter Marino, the same man behind the 2014 transformation and restoration of Bulgari’s original Via Condotti boutique.

Just as how the Pop-Up Corn borrows architectural cues — most prominently the Via Condotti doors — in its design, the permanent space adopts and reinterprets these elements in direct and subtle ways.

Bulgari’s eight-pointed star motif is adorned across its marble floors, just as it was in the historic flagship. Upholstered across the walls are saffron-coloured Shantung silk, simulating the sunset glows of Rome in the enclosed space. Windows around the boutique are emblazoned with Pantheon Mesh screens, first designed for the Via Condotti store. This bronze lattice work takes inspiration from the Roman Pantheon’s floor with the additional motif of the iconic Bulgari eight-pointed star. Inside, the walls bear showcases identical to the ones at Via Condotti, displaying unique jewellery creations.

In celebration, Bulgari has created a limited edition ION Orchard-exclusive Serpenti Forever Handbag retailing at S$10,500.

The boutique shows off the breadth of Italian design throughout. Marble counters, inspired by architect Carlo Scarpa, showcases the latest jewellery collections gleaming under the elegant chandeliers by Italian architect Gio Ponti.

Beyond the public rooms is the inner sanctum, exclusive only for valued clients to view high jewellery pieces. The private space is also a reproduction of the room dedicated to Elizabeth Taylor in Via Condotti. The Hollywood actress, a self-professed Bulgari fan, would spent hours admiring pieces in the room while escaping from Italian paparazzi. Vintage armchairs, onyx coffee tables and rich carpets complete the 1960s vibes.

The boutique also doubles as a mini art gallery. Alongside showcases, walls are adorned vintage photographs of Bulgari’s celebrity ambassadors. Also on display are prints from Andy Warhol, a tribute to Bulgari’s collaboration with the Andy Warhol Foundation for the 2018 Wild Pop High Jewellery Collections.

Jasmine Tay
Senior Writer
Jasmine Tay is the dining, culture and jewellery writer. She makes fine silver jewellery and causes mini-explosions in the kitchen when she can't afford fancy dinners. Sometimes she tells people what she thinks about art, and binges on the music of Danzig when they don’t agree.