Louis Vuitton, Hermès to Strengthen Presence in Southeast Asia

3月 06, 2024

On March 1, the French luxury brand Louis Vuitton opened a new store, Louis Vuitton The Place Bangkok, in Bangkok, Thailand, alongside the luxury shopping mall Gaysorn Amarin where it is located.

This is Louis Vuitton’s sixth store in Thailand, described on the brand’s official website as a “new destination.” With the opening of this store, Thailand has become the country with the most Louis Vuitton stores in Southeast Asia.

Singapore follows closely with five stores, ranking second in Southeast Asia in terms of the number of Louis Vuitton stores. Among them, the Louis Vuitton Island Maison at the Marina Bay Sands in Singapore is the first Louis Vuitton Maison in Southeast Asia, established in 2011.

In February, Louis Vuitton opened its second chocolate shop outside of France at the Louis Vuitton Island Maison. In January, Louis Vuitton launched the first “apartment-style” retail space designed for VIC customers at Ngee Ann City, one of Singapore’s largest commercial shopping centers.

Louis Vuitton’s recent activities in Thailand and Singapore have refocused attention on Southeast Asia.

In recent years, Southeast Asia has emerged as a burgeoning market for luxury brands. According to the “Southeast Asia Fashion Report” (2023 Update) by Luxe.CO Intelligence, Singapore and Thailand were ranked as the most active countries in fashion and luxury dynamics in Southeast Asia from January 2022 to October 2023.

Bangkok’s New Store Merges Restaurant, Café, Retail, and Exhibition Under One Roof

Louis Vuitton The Place Bangkok is located in the bustling Ratchaprasong Square shopping area in the center of Bangkok, near the famous Erawan Shrine.

The flagship store’s venue, Gaysorn Amarin shopping mall, which started renovations at the end of 2022 and reopened on March 1, aims to be a comprehensive commercial hub combining fashion, food, lifestyle, health, and office spaces.

Gaysorn Amarin, formerly known as Amarin Plaza, was developed by Thai real estate developer Gaysorn Property in 1984. The renovated Gaysorn Amarin retains classic architectural elements such as Roman columns.

Amarin Plaza before refurbishment

Gaysorn Property has a history with the LVMH Group.

In 1994, Gaysorn Property built Thailand’s first luxury shopping mall, Gaysorn Plaza.

In 1997, Charn Srivikorn, the current chairman of Gaysorn Property, approached the LVMH Group with a proposal to build another mall next to Gaysorn Plaza, which became the Gaysorn Centre as seen today. The LVMH Group facilitated an investment by Hong Kong Land, and a joint venture, Gaysorn Land Co., was formed. Hong Kong Land currently holds a 49% stake in Gaysorn Land Co., with the founding family owning 51%.

Gaysorn Amarin, along with Gaysorn Centre and Gaysorn Tower, form what Gaysorn Property envisions as Gaysorn Village, continuing its status as a landmark shopping and business district in Thailand.

Louis Vuitton The Place Bangkok spans four floors and was designed by the Hong Kong-based firm CL3, featuring a combination of dining, café, shopping, and exhibition spaces, including the first Louis Vuitton restaurant in Southeast Asia, Gaggan at Louis Vuitton; the second Louis Vuitton café in Southeast Asia, Le Café Louis Vuitton; a retail area; and the lifestyle and travel exhibit Visionary Journeys.

The Louis Vuitton restaurant, with a menu created by famous Indian chef Gaggan Anand, blends the brand’s signature style into its lunch and dinner offerings.

The Louis Vuitton café, designed with a lush, plant-inspired ambiance, offers a variety of Louis Vuitton-patterned delicacies, such as cakes, frozen desserts, and mango sticky rice.

The retail area provides a modern shopping experience with exclusive products like the Alma Nano Rainbow and personalized services such as hot stamping, including a special “Nong Vivienne” hot stamp for the opening.

The Visionary Journeys exhibition, through immersive experiences, recreates the legend of Louis Vuitton, showcasing the brand’s creativity, craftsmanship, and spirit of travel in a series of unique rooms and displays.

Previously, Louis Vuitton’s stores in Thailand were located at Siam Paragon, Emporium Shopping Center, Iconsiam Shopping Center, Central Phuket, and Suvarnabhumi Airport.

In addition to store layouts, Louis Vuitton also announced Thai rapper BamBam as a brand ambassador in January of this year.

From the store’s standards and business model, Louis Vuitton The Place Bangkok is similar to a “Louis Vuitton Maison.”

Currently, Louis Vuitton has one Maison each in Thailand, Singapore, and Korea, six in Japan, and three, two, two, and one in Mainland China, Hong Kong, Taipei, and Macau, respectively.

Singapore: The Second Chocolate Store Outside France

Louis Vuitton opened Le Chocolat Maxime Frédéric at Louis Vuitton in Singapore on February 7th. This chocolate store, located within the Louis Vuitton Island Maison at Marina Bay Sands, marks the brand’s second chocolate store outside France, following the first one launched in March 2021 inside the Louis Vuitton Maison in Tokyo’s Ginza district.

The store in Singapore is a permanent establishment offering takeout only, without dine-in options.

The store’s head chef, Maxime Frédéric, is the pastry chef at Cheval Blanc Paris. An award-winning patissier, Frédéric is known for his strict ingredient requirements, such as using hazelnuts grown on his own farm in France and opting for a century-old mill for grinding over machines to ensure precision. He also adjusts recipes based on the seasonal flavor variations of milk to maintain the quality and taste of the desserts.

The store offers a variety of chocolates featuring Louis Vuitton’s iconic patterns, including pralines, chocolate bars, and chocolate hazelnut spread, with prices ranging from 30 to 420 Singapore dollars. The most expensive item, a brand mascot-shaped chocolate Vivienne on Malle, is priced at 420 Singapore dollars. Interestingly, turning the key at the base of Vivienne on Malle causes the mascot Vivienne to rotate.

Other Louis Vuitton stores in Singapore are located at Orchard Turn mall, Changi Airport T1 and T3, and the recently opened “apartment-style” retail space at Ngee Ann City.

The newly opened retail space on the second floor is positioned directly above Louis Vuitton’s largest women’s boutique in Singapore, designed exclusively for the brand’s top 1% “super VIP customers.” Spanning 690 square meters, the new space features the Louis Vuitton Apartment concept, resembling a chic French apartment with an exhibition area, main hall, gallery, and three private salons.

The exhibition area showcases many of the brand’s historical pieces, the main hall displays the latest haute couture collection, and the three private salons feature women’s ready-to-wear and evening dresses, men’s wear, and high-end jewelry, watches, and rare leather goods.

Hermès, also recently renovated and expanded a boutique in Southeast Asia, opening on March 1st. This store, located on the ground floor of  The Gardens Mall in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, has been redesigned by Hermès’ Parisian architectural firm RDAI, showcasing a range of products, including fragrances, beauty, home, ready-to-wear, accessories, and jewelry.

The store design incorporates natural elements and traditional craftsmanship, blending Malaysian cultural features such as bamboo and sugarcane elements reminiscent of local weaving skills, unique floorings and partitions inspired by traditional Malaysian architecture, and showcases featuring Malaysian handcrafted puppets.

| Image Credit: Louis Vuitton, Gaysorn Amarin official website & official Facebook, Hermès official website

丨Reporter:Huang Yuting

| Editor: Zhu Ruoyu