Luminaire expands its reach with two new rebranded showrooms—one in San Francisco and another in Menlo Park.
Fans of a contemporary aesthetic will find countless options for European design at the transformed Luminaire.
For years, those in love with modern design found their decor fix at DZINE on Utah Street in downtown San Francisco. While the space will still offer the best of European design, rebranding to Luminaire is a part of a recent strategic and functional change. Austin Forbord, the brand’s managing director, discusses the transformation—including a new boutique in Menlo Park this spring—and what it means for creating beautiful spaces in 2022.
WHAT’S THE BACKGROUND ON THE REBRANDING?
Luminaire was purchased by Haworth in 2016, and DZINE was purchased in 2019. We’re actually incorporated under Lifestyle Design, a Haworth subsidiary headquartered in Milan, which owns several iconic Italian furniture brands like Poltrona Frau, Cassina and Cappellini. The strategy is to create a network of stores throughout the United States to better serve the distribution of Italian furniture, including the manufacturers owned by Haworth. DZINE and Luminaire share many of the same lines, as well as a similar ethos and approach. By acquiring DZINE, opening a new showroom in Menlo Park and adding these to Luminaire’s four existing showrooms, Haworth is able to quickly establish a national brand.
A Los Altos bedroom dressed in minimalist pieces from Luminaire
For us, it means a refresh of the San Francisco showroom to more closely align with some of Luminaire’s brand guidelines, while retiring the art gallery program in favor of a more design-focused objects program. For Eve Forbord, DZINE’s founder and CEO, and myself, it means a focus on the downtown showroom and Menlo Park showroom, respectively, in addition to serving as part of the brain trust for Luminaire as it expands and its founders retire.
Tense kitchen furniture from MDF Italia
WHAT DO YOU THINK READERS WILL LOVE MOST ABOUT THE LUMINAIRE AESTHETIC?
Luminaire has been in business for more than 45 years. It has honed its approach to the retail experience—from customer service to design education—by [offering] an extraordinary and unique curation of design objects from all over the world.
WHAT CHANGES WILL CLIENTS SEE IN THE DOWNTOWN VENUE ITSELF?
The art on the walls will be replaced by design objects. There will be more pops of iconic design pieces, and [customers will see] an overall display more oriented toward a focus on design. Though we share many of the same brands, DZINE has been more inclined to show our furniture in a practical way with a focus on comfort and elegance over an aesthetic that’s more specifically driven by contemporary design. There will be a [signature] scent pumped into the showroom—every detail is really looked after.
WHAT DO YOU LOVE MOST ABOUT THIS REBRANDING AND TRANSITION?
Many of the day-to-day tasks of running a business will shift to corporate headquarters in Miami, including logistics, purchasing and human resources—freeing us to focus more on business development and customer service in our market. We’ll have a larger brain trust to support our business and growth, while feeling like we’re part of a larger goal.
WHAT ARE SOME STANDOUT PIECES YOU LOVE?
These aren’t necessarily pieces I love the most, but are pieces we will be adding that we don’t currently show, as they are iconic Luminaire display pieces: Corallo from Edra, Kuramata bookcases from Cappellini, Minima cabinet from MDF, Tense table from MDF and Bubble Rock from Living Divani.
Luminaire also offers sleek looks for bedrooms.
I KNOW YOU’RE OPENING A VENUE THIS SPRING IN MENLO PARK—WHAT CAN HOMEOWNERS EXPECT?
It has been a goal of ours—even before we were acquired by Haworth—to open a new showroom on the peninsula. We believe strongly that there’s a tremendous appetite for our aesthetic in [Silicon Valley]. We want to bring this aesthetic to our customers where they live. Menlo Park already has a good concentration of shops dedicated to home and design, including a number of showrooms and galleries. After an extensive remodel, we will occupy a building formerly occupied by a furniture showroom for more than 40 years, so it’s a natural location for our new store. The showroom will have 11,000 square feet of interior space and display furniture, kitchens, bath and design objects, as well as a 5,000-square-foot roof deck featuring outdoor furniture. If all goes according to plan, the roof deck will transition to a wine bar and event space every evening.
Photography by: PHOTOS COURTESY OF LUMINAIRE