Ralph Lauren, Paris
Housed in a five-story limestone hôtel particulier dating back to the 17th century, the 13,000-square-foot flagship, with its Versailles-style parquet floors, took four years to complete. To ensure that every detail of the restoration was comme il faut, Lauren relied on historical advisers and expert craftsmen-limestone cutters, iron forgers, gilders, even a specialized polisher to wax brass fixtures for just the right patina.
In addition to his mens- and womenswear collections, Black Label, RRL Jeans, Ralph Lauren Home collection, and a jewel-box-like boutique for watches, the new store also houses Lauren's first restaurant outside of the States (the other is in Chicago). He personally oversaw the menu, which he describes as "Americanesque," with its imported Maine lobster, Maryland crab, warm garlic potato chips, Southern fried organic chicken, and grass-fed steaks from his own ranch in Telluride, Colorado.