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Roman & Williams Guild, New York

Harmonising retail and restaurant under one roof

Harmonising retail and restaurant under one roof

Rupert Bentley-Smith

When in New York I am always interested to see new, innovative stores and brands which have not yet crossed the pond to the UK.

Whilst there on a recent business trip, Roman and Williams Guild; the flagship (and only) store of the renowned Roman and Williams opened. Having earned  a prestigious reputation for their numerous interiors, including Ace Hotel in New Orleans, restaurant Lafayette and The Standard Highline (both in New York), Roman and Williams are renowned for their architecture, as well as product and interior design.

This new venture offers followers of the brand a place to purchase individual pieces, rather than having the full interior design service, opening up a completely different market to the brand, and making it more accessible to the masses.

Following the experiential shopping trend, Roman and Williams Guild is not just a furniture showroom, but rather a 7,000 sq. ft. emporium, featuring a library, florist, and café. Curated with the notion of being a place where one could spend their whole day, the idea behind the concept was to emulate the feeling of walking into a beautiful home or dinner party, encouraging patrons to buy the products in order to recreate it.

The café is La Mercerie; a collaboration between Stephen Starr Restaurants and Roman and Williams, featuring Marie-Aude Rose, former chef at Spring in Paris, as head chef. The florist is Emily Thompson Flowers, specialising in wild flowers, and the library is run by Phaidon, containing books from the creative arts publisher. Together they create a beautiful collection of objets d’art of all forms, showcasing all that Roman and Williams love, whether it be their own products or those of others.

With the mass of furniture stores in New York, it is imperative to stand out, and offer something unique to clientele, and Roman and Williams have done exactly that.