beirut: louis vuitton store opening

it's official: luxe is back in beirut. we're talking the opening today of louis vuitton's flagship store in the rapidly changing downtown area. the influx of upmarket foreign brands started a little while ago but the arrival of louis vuitton is an unprecedented step for the city towards becoming the middle east's leading luxury shopping destination, and rivalling dubai's current top position. the store measures 270 sqm. spread over two floors of a restored 1920s townhouse and is designed according to the signature aesthetics laid down by house architect peter marino. this includes the use of beige and brown marble stone, off-white bleached wooden panelling and circular metal netting posing as the monogram flower. a collection of vintage trunks and luggage pieces is put on decorative display on the ground floor while lebanese artist marwan rechmaoui was commissioned window installations specifically for the opening. louis vuitton's new store carries the brand's women's collections of bags, shoes, jewellery and accessories while it also caters to male customers with men's city bags, shoes and sunglasses. prior to the store opening louis vuitton c.e.o. yves carcelle threw a little dinner party where he rubbed shoulders with catherine deneuve, christian louboutin [who was in town to launch his own new boutique] and a slew of local dignitaries and glitterati. location: 103 rue allenby [central beirut]. © louis vuitton + david atlan [bottom picture]