Sometimes, you come across a boutique where you instantly feel that there is something different about this place. This is not just a shop, rather a place of passion – such as Brugnoli.
During my trip to Rome in October, I had the privilege of visiting Pierluigi Brugnoli at his store in Via degli Scipioni. You are welcomed with open arms (figuratively speaking in these times of course) and we hadn’t been talking for many minutes before I sensed the passion bubbling right underneath the surface.
Carlo Brugnoli, Pierluigi’s father, set up the shop here in these exact premises 51 years ago, creating something special. He made it more than a shop and full-service place; this became a community where some 80% of their customers are regulars through many years. Personal service, passion, research and knowledge are the pillars on which the foundation for Brugnoli was built. Now it is up to Pierluigi to maintain and grow this community – in a contemporary matter. As Pierluigi puts it: “Times are different now, and it takes a lot more to run a store like this”.
About a year ago, Pierluigi launched a new concept; next step on Brugnoli’s journey – offering to resell existing clients’ shoes in the store, giving them the full sales price at their disposal to use in the store. This is much more than an appreciative nod to the client and shows that Brugnoli is not like any other store; your purchase and continuous support is greatly valued. It also makes way for a new younger generation to acquire high-quality footwear at a lower price, makes them a part of the “family” – the next generation in the Brugnoli-community.
It is almost impossible not to get smitten by Pierluigi and his shop. In a hectic everyday life and a business where fast fashion rules, it is a pleasure to visit a place like Brugnoli, where time and great passion is something they have and use to take care of the customers the old-fashioned way – in a contemporary time.
I’m hooked – and a pair of vintage Crockett and Jones Cavendish Loafers richer.
Originally posted as part of the Gents Cafe Newsletter, a bite-sized read about men’s lifestyle to enjoy over a coffee or a nice cocktail. Join now!