Goyard, the 165-year-old French luxury brand, has not only mastered the art of travel with its iconic chevron-printed leather and canvas totes, bags, luggage and other accessories – it’s also managed time travel with grand returns to Biarritz and Monte-Carlo.
This spring Maison Goyard set up shop in the Belle Epoque elegance of the 19th century Hôtel de Paris on Monaco’s Avenue de Monte-Carlo. Upon entering the building, a wrought iron banister leads you up a staircase and onto the well-appointed retail floor. A marble marquetry floor in shades of green, grey and white, with jets of black granite throughout, span the 1,830 square-foot space, and walls of solid Cuban mahogany, by Jensen, create a harmony throughout. The brand’s luxury items are made even more luxurious – if that’s even possible – as they’re set-off against an array of antique mercury mirrors from the 1940s and an incredible table by Gilbert Poillerat.
It was also here, in ritzy Monte-Carlo, that Goyard had three shops in the early part of the 20th century. The first outpost opened in late 1899, and as the 19th century packed its bags, Edmond Goyard put down roots in the Winter Palace – under the reign of Albert I. Two more boutiques opened – one on Place de la Madone, and the last in the Hôtel Hermitage in 1913. The business of travel took Goyard from the streets of Paris to other dazzling locations, and during the same period – just prior to World War I – the brand opened a boutique in Biarritz in the Grand Hôtel. Known then as “the queen of beaches and the beach of kings,” Biarritz was a hub of business for Eduard Goyard, where his international clientele regularly traveled with their cases and trunks. Later, when the hotel was seized during the war, the shop moved first to Avenue Edouard VII, a lively spot in the legendary Old England store. In the 1930s, with the onset of World War II and the financial collapse in Europe, Goyard shuttered its boutiques in both Monte-Carlo and Biarritz, along with another in Bordeaux.
In early 2016, with a constant desire to celebrate the past, Maison Goyard’s owner, Jean-Michel Signoles re-opened in Biarritz at 4, Avenue de l’Impératrice. Strategically positioned between the Hôtel du Palais and Avenue Edouard VII – the new shop is located at a crossroad with its storied past. As both new boutiques pay homage to the luxury brand’s rich history, so do a selection of new offerings – some are limited edition, and several are based on pieces from Goyard’s extensive archive.
DuJour’s top picks: the Bourgogne (starting at $2,265); the Sac Belharra Biarritz ($1,855); the Minaudiere ($3,530 to $5,505); the Alpine backpack ($4,950); and the rolling Bourget ($7,200 to $9,360).