The newly renovated Cartier Boutique at Siam Paragon harmoniously blends the brand’s heritage with Thai culture through modern interpretations. Here, we sit down with Pornpreya Vivadhnajat, Cartier’s Managing Director, to discuss the inspirations behind the stunning new boutique.
Can you share with us the idea behind the newly renovated Cartier boutique?
This Cartier boutique was initially established in Siam Paragon in 2006, and so the boutique has been here for about 14 years since then. However, the space was starting to become too small as we expanded the business, so we decided to proceed with a physical expansion. It would not be mistaken to say that this is something that we have been planning for quite some time.
The boutique took about two years to design. There were many alterations along the way as we wanted to convey a sense of Thainess while maintaining Cartier’s identity as much as possible. We are all happy with the result as it is a unique boutique—in fact, the only one in the world—with such design.
How have the two lockdowns affected the renovation process? Has it been more of a hindrance or an advantage to you that the construction phase occurred during the pandemic?
In truth, the construction started before the second lockdown. As such, the lockdowns did affect us due to the reduced working hours and the restrictions on the number of personnel on-site.
Regarding the store’s Thai elements, how was the ‘Thainess’ interpreted so that it does not overlap with the Cartier boutique at ICONSIAM?
For Siam Paragon, there is more emphasis on the sense of ‘metropolitan’ as it is located downtown in the city centre. At the same time, the direction of Cartier also values the ‘Thainess’ and local heritage.
I would say that it’s a perfect matrimony that blends modern and traditional together. Upon entering, the boutique is modern with curved wooden panels that allude to the Parisian grandeur in a very Cartier-esque fashion. At the same time, there is Thainess to it, with the mosaics, the bas-relief and textiles that allude to Thai culture.
With Cartier originating from France, a French artist was the one who designed the bas-relief. However, the artist was very respectful of Thai culture, and thus the bas-relief was ornately carved to depict scenes of the Thai temples.
There seems to be more emphasis on digital interactive technology at the Siam Paragon Boutique.
Whereas the ICONSIAM boutique is located by the river and thus portrays themes of local life by the river, the details at the Siam Paragon boutique differ. When we look at the downtown boutique, we view Cartier as a maison or a home, and so our head architect came up with the idea of traditional Thai houses.
For instance, the gold-braided patterns we see here are inspired by the Thai wall panelling. Upon entering, visitors will be greeted with a chandelier, which has been custom-made for this boutique and takes on the form of raindrops to signify the Thai tropical climate and monsoon season. And so we have two different boutiques, with this Siam Paragon one taking on the form of a Thai maison combined with a more metropolitan vibe using digital interactive technology.
Now that we see two distinct characteristics between the ICONSIAM and the new Siam Paragon boutique, what do you have in mind for Cartier at The Emporium?
Of the three Cartier boutiques, Cartier at The Emporium is our oldest one. Naturally, we have something lovely planned underway.
Visit Boutique Cartier Siam Paragon on M Level of Siam Paragon.