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Going back to Swiss red and white |


Going back to Swiss red and white

Scott Garceau - The Philippine Star
Going back to Swiss red and white
Bally high: (from left) SSI Group, Inc. and Rustan Commercial Corporation president and CEO Anton Huang, Heart Evangelista, Chris Nick and Kyline Alcantara

MANILA, Philippines — With Simone Bellotti at the helm as Bally’s creative director, the 170-year luxury brand has turned another corner — back to its heritage and Swiss origins.

And so has Rustan’s Makati, officially opening its 81-square-meter boutique on the 3rd level (already visible to customers since April). The new space echoes Bally’s signature elements — the meticulously designed wooden boiserie (paneling), walls finished in beige and blond woods, complemented by the store’s marble touches.

Bally is long associated with men’s shoes, but the new space showcased women’s ballerina flats (a classic Bally throwback), a playful “cowbell” design women’s bag (a nod to the brand’s Swiss history) and co-gender bags sporting sports flags. And there was Bellotti’s new “Bally” logo — sans serif, embossed on men’s white sneakers and across ballerina shoe straps.

Previous design director, Filipino Rhuigi Villaseñor’s 2023 collections, were a radical departure from Bally’s trademarks, towards more streetwear and prints; Bellotti, after 16 years with Gucci, brings a more traditional approach but with updated, playful touches.

Bally sports new logo at Rustan’s Makati store, Ballyrina Flat – Balby and Bally Kerbs Drivers in Black Leather

You can see it in the return of the Bally ribbon: that red and white strap nodding to Switzerland’s flag was dropped for a while; Bellotti brings it back to men’s leather messenger and carryall bags. According to SSI, they’ve been receiving a lot of good comments and feedback from loyal customers, saying thank you for bringing back the ribbon. All over, there are nods to the Bally legacy, injected in new ways.

Then there’s the new logo, introduced last year. For men, it’s bold to see the “Bally Spell” embossed on the side of white sneakers. Other places the Spell turns up is on co-gender, sporty weekend bags in the Pennant collection. In a nod to sports, the name appears inside the repeating flag motif. Again, playful, youthful, but not a radical departure. More like a modernized update.

Legacy is on Bally’s mind. For women, the ballerina flats are a direct nod to the 1940s, when Bally continued manufacturing them during WW2 to support the ballet. For 2024, they dug through their archives to craft a contemporary twist on everyday footwear. And again, the revamped Bally Spell across the buckle, bringing it to now.

Bally Pennant Messenger Bag and Bally Bar Denim Mini Bucket Bag

For men, there’s a classic heritage of Bally styles that can be tweaked modern. Simple styles, more elegant. You can easily pair the leather dress shoes or sneakers with jackets or more casual wear. Call it “easy-wear chic.”

The Bally boutique at Rustan’s itself reflects sustainable style and durability: a mix of plush seating, sophisticated velvet and black metal, and a strong emphasis on natural wood displays. History, for Bally, is more of a flat circle than a straight line: “The progression of the house's design represents not just a novel idea but also an evolution in design,” says the release. “A conscious effort to align with the present, learn from the past, and welcome the future.”

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The Bally boutique is located on the 3rd level of Rustan’s Makati. In the Philippines, Bally is exclusively distributed by Stores Specialists, Inc., with other locations at Shangri-La Plaza, City of Dreams, Power Plant Mall, and Newport Mall. Visit or follow @ssilifeph on Instagram for more information.

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