The new showroom showcasing a leading Italian luxury furniture brand - Interior Design NZ
The new showroom showcasing a leading Italian luxury furniture brand

The new showroom showcasing a leading Italian luxury furniture brand

One of the world’s most important luxury interiors brands, Italy’s Molteni&C | Dada is known for its endless pursuit of beauty and quality. A market leader with a long tradition of collaborating with Europe’s most important designers, Molteni&C | Dada is now available in New Zealand.

Words by ArchiPro Editorial Team

Angus Dawson and Scott Fisk of Dawson & Co spoke to ArchiPro about why being selected to showcase Molteni&C in New Zealand is such a big deal—and why they’ve made it their flagship brand, even though most New Zealanders have never heard of them.

ArchiPro: What specifically impressed you about the brand?
Angus: What completely blew us away was the sheer scale of the market-leading designers, architects, fabricators and craftsmen they had partnered with—and that they weren’t already represented in New Zealand. Globally, they’re one of the largest brands in furniture, wardrobes and kitchens at the luxury end of the market with a distribution network of more than 700 retailers spread over 80 countries.

AP: Why haven’t we heard of them before?
Angus: In short, New Zealand has never been on their radar. Our market has simply not been big enough. When you represent them, they require you to build an entire gallery dedicated to the brand. But even if you haven’t heard of the Molteni&C brand, you’ll know the architects and designers they collaborate with—luminaries such as Vincent Van Duysen, Jean Nouvel, Foster+Partners, Rodolfo Dordoni, Aldo Rossi, Tobia Scarpa, Gio Ponti, Patricia Urquiola and many more.

AP: Why is New Zealand right for Molteni&C now?
Scott: There is a growing level of wealth in New Zealand, which has resulted in a comparable growth in purchasing power at the luxury end of the market. Those customers desire more choice and are seeking something the market hasn’t offered until now.

Part of a collection of square and rectangular tables designed by Michael Anastassiades, the Half A Square table is minimalist in design but rich in the combination of materials.

AP: How did the relationship come about?
Angus:
For the past several years, we’ve actively sought a luxury interior furniture brand at European furniture fairs that fits with what our clients want within our aesthetic. We’ve already had great success at the luxury end of the outdoor industry and were looking at how we could take that experience inside the home.

Scott: We’ve always tried to be unique and to bring something new to the market. Last year prior to lockdown, the goal was to go to Milan and engage with the few brands we were interested in. Obviously, that didn’t happen. So, it became a discussion online and through Zoom calls and luckily our preferred brand was interested.

AP: Why did Molteni&C select Dawson & Co to showcase their brand?
Angus:
In New Zealand, the market is quite small. Retailers tend to have multiple brands because it gives choice. However, Molteni&C like to be independent. Because of the sheer size of their business, they insist on it. As a retailer, they want you to dedicate a significant amount of floorspace to their brand and not carry other luxury brands, which would be difficult for those already established in that part of the market. Whereas for us, we had the opportunity to say, you can be our flagship brand.

AP: What does the relationship mean for Molteni&C and for you?
Angus:
It worked well for both parties. Molteni&C were looking for a partner that would give them the floorspace and exclusivity. We were looking for a brand that gave us exclusivity. The beauty of this relationship is, we’re not going to be a house of brands. Molteni&C is THE Brand.

Paying homage to both Piet Mondrian and Carlo Scarpa, Intersection by Vincent Van Duysen is a kitchen with a strong expressive character and refined details that combine in unparalleled craftsmanship.

AP: You’ve dedicated more than 200sqm of showroom space to Molteni&C. How will that work?
Scott: We prefer to give our brand partners lots of space, like we have previously done with the Timothy Oulton gallery, so customers get the impact of what our designers do. Our business philosophy is to have fewer relationships but more meaningful ones. Molteni&C has given us that.

AP: What does it mean for your customers?
Scott: If you’re spending a significant amount of money at the luxury end on your home, it’s hard to make choices without seeing the product. That’s what excites us. Customers can come in and walk into the wardrobe, lie on the bed, sit on the sofa and have a coffee in the kitchen. Having that level of tactility and feeling for the product helps our customers make those decisions.

AP: How will you evolve the showroom?
Scott: We’ll rework the space regularly to keep it current. The pieces in the 2021 collection by Vincent Van Duysen, for example, will get reworked to trend. The design itself doesn’t necessarily change—maybe just the materials and finishes. Molteni&C is always bringing new and inspiring products to the collection that we’ll want to showcase. We’ll update the entire showroom over a two or three period, area by area.

Octave is a series of 'mix-and-match' modular elements marked by geometrical lines that came together in a variety of linear and angular compositions.

AP: What sets Molteni&C designs apart?
Angus:
Everything the Molteni&C designers create relates to a piece of architecture, form or design they’re in love with. They bring that feeling to the product. There is so much more to the pieces than what you see on the showroom floor. The big thing is the longevity of their design. That’s significant.

AP: What are some key differences between Molteni&C and other luxury brands?
Scott:
They embrace the heritage of the brand to show how vintage pieces can be reworked within a contemporary environment. They bring back the likes of Gio Ponti’s key chair designs and coffee tables and put them into a contemporary setting alongside a Vincent Van Duysen sofa in the 2021 collection. That’s the joy of dealing with the aristocracy of Italian furniture manufacturing.

AP: What’s the most exciting thing about having the Molteni&C brand?
Angus:
We’re adding another beautiful brand to the industry; offering more choice. What’s unique about this store is we are concentrating on a few key brands, giving their collections the space they deserve.

AP: When will the showroom open?
Scott:
The boutique will be open from Friday, 13 August. Come and see us, we would love to show you the new collection!

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