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Fashion and Beauty

Armani strengthens Philippine presence, still very hands-on at 88 — Filipino exec

Deni Rose M. Afinidad-Bernardo - Philstar.com
Armani strengthens Philippine presence, still very hands-on at 88 â Filipino exec
From left: Italian fashion designer Giorgio Armani acknowledges applause following the presentation of Emporio Armani's Women's Spring Summer 2023 fashion collection on September 22, 2022 in Milan; Armani Exchange's new concept store in Glorietta, Makati (top, right) and new scents in the Beauty Floor of SM Makati.
AFP/Filippo Monteforte; SSI, Rustan Marketing Corporation/Released

MANILA, Philippines — Armani Exchange and Armani Fragrances, diffusion lines under Italian luxury fashion house Giorgio Armani, recently unveiled new collections in the Philippines in time for the holidays.

"Yes, definitely. When we go to Milan, to their showroom, he’s still there,” Christiane Chan, merchandise group manager for Stores Specialists Inc. (SSI), told Philstar.com of her encounters with the legendary mover and shaker behind the Armani brand, designer Giorgio Armani, Italy's second richest man, according to Forbes

According to Chan, the 88 year-old Armani is still very much involved as his fashion house’s chief executive officer.

“(He’s) going around, checking on each sample and the silhouettes, the designs.”

When asked when the Italian maverick would visit the Philippines, she said: “I have no idea. But he’s really very hands-on with all the designs. Even the materials he chooses by himself.”

Before “sustainability” became today’s byword, Armani has been championing such, Chan enthused.

“Actually, Mr. Armani is one of the first designers to campaign for sustainability. Of course, other brands have been campaigning for sustainable materials, care for the environment.”

Armani’s continuing sustainability efforts can be seen in the new fall-winter 2022 collections of his high-street label Armani Exchange, exclusively distributed in the Philippines by SSI.

Also highly identified by its logo, A|X presents a fall-winter 2022 omnibus that includes heavier jackets, sweaters and shirts with wool in neutral colors and subtle camouflage prints. The highlights are two special collections: the first is a collaboration for the 50th anniversary of Smiley World, featuring Giorgio’s iconic eyeglasses and A|X’s logo rendered as smiley patches and all over prints.

“This campaign aims to give positivity, happiness, joy in the world,” Chan explained.

From left: SSI Merchandise Group Manager for Stores Specialists, Inc. Christiane Chan pointing at the emoji rendition of the A|X logo; models sporting pieces from A|X's new collaboration collection for Smiley World's 50th year.
Philstar.com/Deni Rose M. Afinidad-Bernardo; Armani Exchange/Released

Another special collection is “You. Me. Us.” – named as such as it espouses universal materials, such as sustainable cotton and nylon, as well as inclusivity in statements and design.

“Cotton Pima is very popular for A|X, for their T-shirts,” said Chan. “(Cotton Pima) is a very soft cotton material that A|X uses to make its garments comfortable enough that you can sleep on them, but it’s very durable and very nice quality.”

Apart from Cotton Pima, the brand also boasts of its organic cotton denim trousers and jackets in manmade leather, made with recycled plastic and resin, as opposed to the use of unsustainable animal leather.

“A|X now is moving toward casual wear, even athleisure, because we’re trying to capture a very young market… who are now raving for more casual wear,” Chan shared.

The sustainability and inclusivity themes flow from the best-selling shirts and shoes to the new concept store at the ground floor of Glorietta 4 in Makati City. 

“We’re proud to say that this is the first store in Southeast Asia with the latest collection and new store concept,” said Chan of the store’s minimalist flooring, tiling and use of wood in its accessories wall for sustainability.

The new concept shop blurs gender boundaries by having no division and a seamless transition from men’s to women’s sections, acknowledging that many women, like Chan herself, also shop at the men’s department. Such gender-bending extends into the label’s ad campaigns and to other Philippine outlets in Powerplant Mall, Shangri-La Plaza Mall, Alabang Town Center and Abreeza Mall Davao.

It’s beginning to smell like Christmas

From left: Model holding Acqua di Gio by Giorgio Armani; Armani Global Beauty Ambassador Cate Blanchett stars in a new campaign for the brand's new scents.
Rustan Marketing Corp./Released; Philstar.com/Deni Rose M. Afinidad-Bernardo

To usher in the Christmas season this year, Armani unveiled a new holiday campaign that captures the enduring joy of the festive season. The magical holiday campaign film, which stars the brand’s Global Beauty Ambassador – Oscar-winning actress Cate Blanchett, unveils the most spectacular Armani beauty gifts, displayed on a glistening Ferris wheel.

For a refreshing aromatic aquatic scent, the brand presents the for-him fragrance Acqua di Gio by Giorgio Armani. A scent of freedom full of wind and water, its bitter citrus with an aromatic scent of rosemary perfectly intertwines with sweet and salty fragrance of sea water and pellucid hedione aiming to immediately transport men to the sunny coast of the Mediterranean Sea. 

Sì Passione by Giorgio Armani, on the other hand, is a bright and sensual perfume that emits confidence, seduction, and strength; fitting for the modern woman. The fragrance opens with notes of spicy pink pepper like a burst of adrenaline and continues on with radiant pear which adds an essence of boldness. Rose and jasmine are added into the mix to exude femininity while heliotrope, vanilla, and cedarwood act as an invitation to self-indulgence and pleasure.

Exclusively distributed by Rustan Marketing Corp. and available in leading online shopping sites and department stores nationwide, these new Armani fragrances can be sampled until November 30 in a special showcase in the Beauty Floor of SM Makati.

RELATED: Fendi Casa opens first Asia store in the Philippines

CATE BLANCHETT

GIORGIO ARMANI

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