Baccarat is one of the most prestigious manufacturers of crystal ware in the world, and traces its origins back to 1764, when King Louis XV granted the Bishop of Metz the right to build a glassmaking factory.
With Louis XVIII the first to buy, commissions eventually came in from the Japanese emperor, the kings of Morocco and Arabia, as well as the intricate crystal tables and chairs ordered by spendthrift maharajas who had their delicate furniture delivered to them on the backs of elephants once it reached the Indian subcontinent. Perhaps one of their most famous clients was the ill-fated Czar Nicholas II and his Czarina.
In October 2003, they opened a museum / show room / shop / restaurant in an old private palace in the city centre on the Place des Etats Unies. (Baccarat Museum: 11 place des États-Unis, Paris; phone: 33 (40) 221100. Open from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Closed Sundays).
Designed by Philippe Starck, one of France’s top designers, and living up to Baccarat’s slogan “La beaute n’est pas raisonable” (beauty is not reasonable), Philippe create a very interesting place to visit and you don’t have to eat if you don’t want to (or if you can’t get a table). Philippe, who has just designed for Samsonite an entire range of luggages, from the toilet bag to the handbag… as well as San Francisco’s The Clift Hotel, and lent his famous clock design to create a line of beautiful modernist FOSSIL watches, has designed what may be the most stunning corporate headquarters in Paris.
His “Darkside Collection” of glassware will feature prominently at the flagship store in Takashimaya on level 2.
At twice the size of their previous space, there is plenty of space for Gothies with cash to spare to stock up on the moody onyx inspired black crystal pieces, such as the grand Black Zenith chandelier (a bargain at S$91,000) with lampshades, or a black Un Parfait glass set suitable for the dark lord himself at just S$2,960. If you’re maxed out on the cards, it’s still worth coming by to check out the work of a master artist like Philippe Starck.
– Level 2, Takashimaya Dept. Store, 391 Orchard Road, Tel: + 65 6835 1252 – Fax : + 65 6835 1252, Monday – Sunday from 10 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. Closed the first two days of Chinese New Year. Country Manager: Lucy Pan