Category Archives: Events

London Design Week – The Ermesponti report.

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Last week the London Design Week 2016 was on so we went to the Design Centre Chelsea Harbour in different occasions.

The Design Centre in Chelsea always tries to offer the latest directions in interior design and displays a good example of global names of the luxury interiors.

During this week, the place has been buzzing with people especially interior designers and – actually – if you are an interior designer or decorator, this is the place to come.

There are more than one hundred of shops offering materials and products (fabrics, carpets, wallpapers, trimmings, furniture and lightining) ready to be screened. Some products we saw were really inspiring and we found really close to what we think is beauty, unicity and luxury.

Among them, the trimmings by the Sevinch Passamanterie were beautiful pieces of art, handmade by artisans who master a very antique technique in making tassels and trimmings. This artefacts are so precious and unique, they are mainly produced for royal palaces and historycal houses (like The Wallace Collection Museum where we took pictures of few tassels weeks ago, without knowing where they came from!).

This year, the London Design Week also offered some brief insight from the hospitality world with two events.

We found very interesting the experience of Pasrichan Sharan, who took care of developing the Hoxton, well known place where-to-go in Shoreditch, especially among young professionals. The task of his team was to find the potential right location, to understand the right target and how to attract them.

The same task, although with a more ‘mature / high-end’ target, was undertook by another guest, Brian Clivaz in developing and managing an exclusive men’s club in Soho, the Arts Club.

The room they concentrated on was the main lounge area, the social space, where people come and gathered together. In both experiences (young professionals the first one, royalties and high society, the second) design plays a very important role. In order to create a smooth atmosphere, bespoke interiors with a few design pieces are used, some are vintage, in order to give a distinctive but recognizable character, a lifestyle, they are trying to sell to the customer.

Very interesting was also the meeting with Bernie Gallagher, chairman of the Doyle Collection, a family company, owner of eight boutique-hotels located in Ireland, England and US.

As they move to redesign and transform their hotels, the main thread for all of them was to deliver something “to be desirable and forever”.

For this long project, Bernie has been working with the architect Denis Looby from Sheehan & Barry Architects, met long time ago. Amazingly, every Doyle Collection Hotel is bespoke-designed, each with “a wholly individual look and feel”, combining fine architecture with elegant, modern interiors. I felt the views  this lady shared with us were really sensible and condivisible: a good manager spends with care, invests in the long run, has to aim high to be sure to deliver the best. We think they spotted it.


1 – Ermesponti bespoke interiors has a London-based Export manager: to contact her is as easy as sending an email.

2 – Feel like checking out Ermesponti’s international references? Here you are!

3 – Ermesponti bespoke interiors has just completed a bespoke interior project in the heart of London.

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Christmas 2015: A Short Message for us?

So it is Christmas again.
It happens once a year. Is it all about holidays, greetings and gifts? Is our Christmas in Europe or in western countries still genuine and credible?
This year we are wondering about the meaning of Christmas nowadays to give you a more real gift or send true greetings. Maybe the meaning of Christmas is simpler than we can imagine. It is just about God’s Son being on earth with us and for us. That makes sense. There is only one God and his Son came here just to tell us we are all brothers and sisters. That’s the message of Christmas!
If you just believe in this simple message, the New Year will be really new and happy.
It is not  only a  number on our calendar. A simple, humane idea can affect the world so your neighbour becomes you brother. How about behaving to him as you would like him to behave to you?
We wish you a new kind of Christmas and so  a real New Year.
If everyone of us lives in peace with his  neighbour, there will be no more war.
Let’s go for it. Two thousand years have gone by.  What are we waiting for?
Image: “Supper in Emmaus”, 1601
Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio 
National Gallery, London

After visiting Salone del Mobile 2015, what we liked the most was: Porro.

Porro al Salone del Mobile: il post di ermesponti
Nobody in our industry can afford to miss Milan’s Salone del Mobile…

In fact, we too made sure to have the space, between the various appointments, for a focused visit.

A lot could be sad about “special effects” and visual marketing.

But our architects’ eye has settled on the quality of design and manufacturing.

The company whose manufacturing impresseb us above everything else has been Porro – and it’s no surprise, for whoever knows them, always consistent in their qualitative approach.

Not necessarily in priority order, this is what we liked:

1 – Creative solutions
See how to “hang” a pillow to the headboard with a simple and elegant anchor… this is the relationship between form and function: impressive…

2 – Accuracy of construction details and assemblyPorro al Salone del Mobile 2015: note di ermesponti
Beautiful hinges, purposely designed and made with a rare attention to detail – very familiar to us in the bespoke world, but not so in orderly production

3 – Beautiful laquers
We feel a certain affinity with the contrast effect of lacquered wood and shiny-matte of some parts of the living area; the detail of the junction between these two finishes on the edge is not simple at all, but it’s performed flawlessly

4 – General usage of valuable and natural materials
Where industrial production of high-end furniture series tends too much to fold to an indiscriminate use of wood imitative surface, Porro offers a lot of wood, finally, and well painted; beautiful veneer selected with attentive eye and even pieces of solid wood

The company of Montesolaro (Como) wins therefore an award entirely unknown and of no importance: best presence at the Salone del Mobile 2015 according to ermesponti!

We thank and congratulate – in addition to Porro – all the Italian companies who keep investing in the real quality of true Made in Italy.

Quality – for which Italians enjoy a worldwide reputation, founded on the twin pillar of high project level and amazing design, coming from the cultural heritage of the great Italian masters of the last century – is what we all stand for, in many ways: 

  • choice and use of materials
  • bespoke, handmade manufacturing
  • excellence in final delivery, with no delays or cost surprises

Let’s all keep up the good work!

Porro al Salone del Mobile: il post di ermesponti

From our Twitter channel, the 02/19/2015 live tweeting on the presentation event of Francesco Morace’s book “Crescita Felice”

Crescita Felice di Francesco MOrace: live tweeting by ermespontiIt was February 20th, 2009, when Professor Morace launched “Il Senso dell’Italia”, which gave rise to the adventure of Italian Rennaissance and to books about a company’s own talent, which also involved us of ermesponti.

Exactly six years later, February 19th, 2015 – in the same Hall of Honor of the Triennale in Milan – Francesco Morace launches a message of optimism and hope for our country just from the title of his new book:

“Crescita Felice”
Percorsi di futuro civile

In our own way, we would celebrate this event with an open sharing of the concepts that Francesco Morace will explain, through our Twitter channel @ermesponti with the hashtag #CrescitaFelice.

It’ll be a pleasure to dedicate a complete live tweeting to the presentation of the book and the ensuing debate, from 6 pm up to the end of the meeting.

See you online on @ermesponti, following the hashtag #CrescitaFelice!

[Video] Happy growth: Francesco Morace’s economic recipe in his new book. Save the date for presentation: Milano Triennale, Feb 19th.

We all want  our economy to grow, and do so happily.

If the suggestion of “happy decrease” never quite convinced you, if you’re looking for a sustainable path for economic development, if you think that the beautiful and the “well done” still make sense in this little crazy world of ours… this book, written by our friend Francesco Morace, is probably the right choice for you.

On rather: for us :-)

See you at the Milano Triennale, Thursday, February 19, 2015 for the presentation of the book “Growing Happy” by Francesco Morace – Egea editions.

We invite you to a 2015 of opening, sharing and conversation.

A new year has just begun, we’d like to start our 2015 conversation speaking of the things we love, beyond the daily tasks.

How we work, rather than what we do.

As we try to create “a culture of doing” (savoir faire), we are also trying hard to spread it and make it known, even with this blog (faire savoir).

Something that – since the Renaissance – has made Italy a special place, something in which we keep believing in.


Schermata 01-2457032 alle 10.52.45Let’s open ourselves up to foreign markets, as well as to our outstanding national culture (the Italian Factor)… 

Let’s open up to new generations and to their desire to work and learn with us.


We create value, everyday.ermes-ponti-bespoke-interiors2

There’s value in detailed processing, there’s value in project design, there’s value in relationships.

Work is made of value, all the rest is mere routine.

This year, let the value created by our minds and hands be shared, for the sake of personal and common growth.


What’s the point of being very good… alone?

The artisan shops of the Italian Renaissance have taught us – long before the social networks – how important it is to be in touch with each other, share a path and move forward together.

ermesponti bespoke interiors (mantua, italy)To do this, we believe that taking part in the online platforms of conversation allows us to confront our readers.

And that’s not just for present times, but also for the future, as these web pages are here to stay.

This, to begin with, we wish and hope for the new year, for us all.

Happy 2015!

The Chancellor’s Bungalow at the Venice Architecture Biennale 2014. The eye-catching door is 320 cm high and covered with continuous veneer.

5- paolo che fa rilievo a BOnn
Dealing with the Kanzlerbungalow, which was conceived, designed and built in 1964, meant a healthy re-immersion in the architectural culture that shaped us.
It was a breath of fresh air, compared to the contemporary scene, in which architectural interiors are relegated to blank spaces to be filled with this or that brand of design furniture.
This architecture, designed and purpose-built for the German Chancellor fifty years ago, is still a significant example for us.
It reminds us that furniture in architecture is never ‘just furniture’- it blends with the building, thereby taking it beyond the usual construction industry.
There are no better words to describe the value of all this than those of Paolo Ponti, the architect who carried out a rigorous survey of the original and rebuilt it with archaeological precision, along with his craftsmen from ermesponti:
“The beauty of the Bungalow furniture lies in its simplicity: it is clean and basic, but it does conceive a sense of being valuable, but is well constructed.
It matches perfectly with the prestige of the house it is supposed to be in.
There is this feeling of excellence and style, coming from details and proportions.
The door of Chancellor’s office is 320 cm high with a rigorous selection of veneer.
The shape is simple but the beauty is great. There’s such a majesty about it and the amazing feeling you get when you handle it. What a sound it makes when you’re about to open it…
So great, it reminds you of a bank vault.
Then, when you close it, it produces a unique sound. At that point you feel all the quality and the  precision. At that moment, it all turns into pure beauty.
From the inside, it’s fully integrated in the panelling with not a cable shield or mark in sight. And the wood grain continues perfectly, with no interruption at all.
It’s wonderful in its simplicity.: it tells you the deep beauty of things simply and yet in very sophisticated way.
That’s what we liked and what we learned from this wonderful example of handicraft. You have the pure beauty of a simple shape, coming from apparently minor details, but the effect is very sophisticated.
These features turn a door into a unique, extraordinary object that is timeless and beyond trends”.
1-studio ancelliereJPG
All this reminds us how design and architectural results at this level are always based on simple and distinctive features.
This idea is something that has been faithfully fullfilled at the Venice Architecture Biennale.
The presence  of  Project Masters has been fully used to execute  a perfectly defined plan.
We will always remember this setting and try to put it into practice every day with our little revolution using our end to end process.
4-riproduzione a venezia
Although we are no longer in 1964 and we don’t work for the German Chancellor, for us every customer – even the average family renovating their home – is entitled to this service.
Ours is an  approach that brings in the value of a unique, personal, bespoke project that is not higher in price than the one provided by standard solutions from so-called “luxury” brands.

Three questions to Francesco Morace, co-author of “Italian Factor”

Francesco Morace

We’ve been following for a while now, with attention and participation the important work of the sociologist Francesco Morace, of whom we have already spoken on several occasions.

A particularly interesting event has been the presentation of his last book, co-written with Barbara Santoro, “Italian Factor” at the Chamber of Deputies in Rome in July.

Having been there with the authors, we’ve had the chance to ask some questions both to Barbara (interview here) and to Professor Morace.

With him, we started out recalling the experience with the cultural project “The Renaissance Link”.

ermes ponti – The Renaissance Link and Italian Factor: two parts of the same cultural path?

As you know, we keep track of all your steps…

Francesco Morace – Even before Renaissance Link, my cultural path about Italy has started with two books: Italian Ways in 2003 and Il senso dell’Italia in 2008, in which you can find  the foundations of an Italian Renaissance, starting from the lack of awareness of our uniqueness.

With Renaissance Link, we created an Association able to deal  with such issues, by creating awareness in companies and institutions.

After 4 years, 50 presentations in Italy and 3 books (Verità e Bellezza, Talento dell’Impresa and Impresa del Talento), we thought that the aim of raising public awareness had been reached and we decided to dissolve the Association, and set each one of us free to continue with its mission individually.

This is also one of the reasons I accepted with enthusiasm Barbara’s proposal about the book to write together.

ermes ponti – You rightly report, in your speeches, examples of excellence.

A tip for all the Small Businesses operating in the market average, without peaks of excellence, but without ever betraying the “good trade”?

We believe that, among the 120,000 factories that shut down in Italy recently, there were some quite valuable, even if not outstanding… what do you think?
italian factor
Francesco Morace – In this regard, let me mention an article in which I try to clarify the difference between Luxury and Excellence: the “good trade” is part of the culture of excellence but it’s just not enough in difficult times such are these we live in.

To this, we must add the fact that Italian tradition hasn’t innovated enough. 

The vast majority of the 120,00 businesses that have closed were, unfortunately, not equipped in this dimension.

ermes ponti – Politics in business: easy relationship, as we all know…

Where would you start to establish a dialogue with value?

Francesco Morace – I believe that politics is always a reflection of a country and its vices/virtues.

We are the ones who choose the political class, that way the change will have to be deep, and arrive even in the foundations of being Italian.

However, it seems that the new political season that Renzi and the PD have launched will bring positive developments.

We need to bring along a new awareness and collective responsibility, a new focus on the common good and to the possibility of a happy growth.

This is exactly the focus of my new book, which will be published with Egea in January 2015, called “Crescita felice. Per una economia civile”.

How would you design the interior of a house? Materials? Furniture? Design? No, sir: talking to who’s supposed to live there.

New York Interiors by Ermes Ponti

Whoever works in the interior designer industry, like us, can choose different approached to a new project.

She can choose to go the famous-design-object way.

She can choose to design and manufacture bespoke furniture.

Or else, all this can be left aside, to sit down and talk.

Talk and understand. Not only the residents’ needs, but also their taste.

Look around. Try to get the feeling.

Find the aesthetic and functional solutions for that specific person.

It may seem trivial, but almost everythng we see around is designed and manufactured with different criteria, often standard.

Something taking no account of the people who actually will leave in that space.

Take for example the house of an American writer, on 5th Avenue in New York, a project carried out thanks to the network Design-Apart of which we are partner (the project of “living showroom” head office of D-A on the 23rd is our work too – case history here).

It’s a flat with significantly particular tastes – far from our own, to be honest – but by no means despicable, of course.

Bright colours, ethnic flavor, different materials: many objects from all over the world, mixed together, for an environment with a defined personality, expression of the eclectic tastes of the hostess.

The project was born spontaneously as a reinterpretation of her own tastes, of pre-existing structures and its contenitive and functional requirements.

We have selected for her just a few samples, the ones you see in the picture:

Sample 1: a rare sycamore frisè shellac lacquered (natural gloss finish) with an hot orange-red colour, with an almost exotic flavor, suited to her ethnic taste

Sample 2: a very light – almost iridescent- sycamore grooved (flute), reminiscence of the Parisian decorations of the thirties of our colleague J-E. Rulhmann.

Sample 3: stone gray Sahara (on the top) suggested by the colour of the kitchen’s floor

New York Interiors by Ermes Ponti

The writer was thrilled to recognize herself in the choice of her designers, who came from Italy to propose her a kitchen retrieving the design of her beloved column.

She appreciated the selection of mixed colours and materials so consistent with her tastes and with the essences, materials and objects of art of her apartment.

Now she can say to have an apartment unique in the world; her best portrait! Finally!

NY Residential interiors by ermes ponti

Sounds easy enough, right?

Not so, appearently.

Each time is a surprise for us to find that very, very few work truly consider the real needs and tastes of customers.

A method that – if applied by the principle, from the beginning of the project – combines the advantage of a “tailored” job to the pleasure of a unique solution in the world, even for a house of two rooms.

New York Interiors by Ermes Ponti