Inside the stunning new Chanel flagship in Yorkville

Inside the stunning new Chanel flagship in Yorkville

Chanel has upgraded its Toronto headquarters from a glass-enclosed corner plot on Bloor Street to a yellow-brick heritage building on Yorkville Avenue. The two-storey structure was built in 1871 as a private residence and, in its nearly 150-year life, has housed everything from Mount Sinai Hospital to, most recently, upscale homewares brand Teatro Verde. The building’s been under construction for the past year (to bring it up to Coco standards and all). The facade remains immaculately preserved, but the interior has been transformed into a fashion lover’s paradise as imagined by architect Peter Marino.

The main floor feels like a museum, with individual salons showcasing accessories as if they were objets d’art. There are shelves stacked with brightly coloured stilettos, quilted clutches displayed like priceless paintings, sculptures draped in silk scarves and glass cases filled with watches that cost more than most cars. Upstairs feels relatively homey, and this is where shoppers will find the label’s ready-to-wear collection of celeb-approved clothing. Right now, the lineup features all sorts of tweed looks in muted golds, browns and oranges. With price tags ranging from three to five figures, everything is way above the average Torontonian’s budget—but pretending doesn’t cost a cent.

Guests are greeted at the entrance by a chandelier made of crystal rocks and polished bronze. It’s by French label Goossens:


 

Jewellery is displayed inside gold birdcages, and the carpets are custom-made from silk and wool:


 

The shoe salon has a brass mirror sculpture by French artist Curtis Jere. The engraved brass and bronze table was designed by Michael Pohu:


 

There’s quilted luggage on hand, too:


 

The staircase is highlighted by a giant, eight-metre-tall sculpture of a pearl necklace. It was commissioned for Parisian artist Jean-Michel Othoniel, a frequent Chanel collaborator:


 

Upstairs, silver-haired mannequins showcase the latest styles:


 

The space, filled with tweed sofas, is meant to resemble a sophisticated townhouse:


 

The limestone fireplace was flown in from Paris. Shoppers can take a break on a gold-leaf resin “firebird” chair by American furniture artist Wendell Castle:


 

Here’s one of the three fitting rooms: