Thursday, April 1, 2010

A Toast to René Lalique

Just in time for the 150th birthday celebration of the renown Art Deco glass designer: A new showroom specializing in the company’s architectural elements in crystal.

How does crystal fit into today’s modern lifestyle? Well, first imagine a toast at a special occasion- a wedding without the chime of two crystal glasses touching which produces that beautiful unique sound. For this feature alone I recently picked up a set of crystal martini glasses and they really do add a cheerful element to any celebration.

The attractive optical properties of crystal are another appealing characteristic. This is often highlighted with a patterned design in the mold or cut into the exterior by hand. Crystal cutting creates a more brilliant, sparkling effect as each cut facet reflects and transmits light through the object.

Lalique’s showroom just opened inside the Chicago Merchandise Mart. The space includes Haviland and Daum brands, the first joint presentation of the three French names under one roof. Unlike the Lalique-Haviland New York boutique, which opened in October to the public, the Chicago showroom is to-the-trade only.

The focus here is on the interior design capabilities and architectural elements such as panels, tables, mirrors and lighting. Installations can be seen within the cars of the famous Oriental Express.

Lalique product highlights in the showroom include a custom-made fountain composed of the iconic ‘Masque de Femme’ (detail shown above) and Coutard Panels, as well as a customized, large-scale rectangular version of the popular Cactus Table and pieces from the new Cristalight lighting collection.

One destination not on wheels that celebrates Lalique interiors is the legendary Mr. Chow’s restaurant in mid-town Manhattan. A visit begins by opening the doors fitted with Lalique crystal handles and other interesting details throughout the space including illuminated crystal reliefs identifying the different washrooms.

Merchandise Mart, Suite 1867
Chicago, IL 60654
Phone 312-867-1787

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