FLORENCE KO’S NAME hasbeen synonymous with high-endItalian furniture as managingdirector of Furnitalia for 13 yearsnow. Under her helm, upscaleItalian furniture brands such asMolteni & C, Poltrona Frau, Giorgetti,Flexform, and Cassina havebecome accessible to the Filipinomarket. She is also the person behindthe thriving Calligaris brandhere in the country that has madegreat Italian furniture choicesavailable to a wider market.
In 2008, Florence saw theopportunity to bring in the newbut more affordable brand to thePhilippines. Although known forproducing only chairs and tables,Calligaris soon expanded tointroduce a whole range, makingthe decision easier for Florence.“Eight years ago, the time wasright to introduce a brand withmid-range priced products. Wewanted a brand with a completeline that can furnish a wholehouse, and is strong in contractprojects such as restaurant andhotels. Calligaris was the firstone that I thought of,” recalls Florence.
Today, Calligaris carriessofa, coffee table, armchairs,beds, lights and accessories suchas picture frames and magazinestands. “You can build a houseand Calligaris can supply allyour furniture needs,” she says.
The brand’s distinct aestheticis attributed to the originalityand smartness of its design.“Many stores offer imitations,but originality is a premiumedge of Calligaris. On top of that,its designs also find answers tomany look and space concerns.We have stackable chairs andexpandable tables that you canconvert from a console to a diningtable,” Florence says. Suchergonomic features are whatmakes Calligaris’ products fit foreveryday use for both big andsmall spaces, from residences to condominiums.
Contemporary, modern andoriginal are the stamps of this90-year-old brand, which startedout as an artisan shop specializingin chairs and tables. Thoughnot as expensive as other Italianbrands, particularly those carriedby Furnitalia, it does havethat Italian appeal that evokeshigh-end lifestyle furniture.Many of its designs are simpleand clean, vibrant and warm thatfit homes of today.
What makes Calligaris trulyright for the Philippine marketis that it is a furniture brandthat can stand on its own, unlikeother showrooms that has tocarry a mix of brands to satisfymore selective clients.
Just this July, Florence Kolaunched a single-brand showroomin Fort Bonifacio. It is anall-mezzanine structure, with afloor area of 300 sq. ft., carryingonly Calligaris products. Newitems are introduced regularly,many of which are featured atthe annual Milan Fair. “Now thatwe have a new showroom witha superb location, we can showour clients a more completeline,” proudly says Florence.
Smart, affordable, original,and Italian, Calligaris has coveredthe bases enough to wowan increasingly practical anddiscerning Filipino market.
Originally posted 2016-05-08 05:00:35.