A Look Inside Diamond Boutique in Belgium
Diamond Boutique is a diamond exhibition in Maasmechelen Village, a municipality located in the Belgian province of Limburg. It is also the latest retail project of a Belgian interior design and branding agency Creneau International with branch office in Dubai.
“When you are assigned to create a design for a ‘Love the Diamond boutique’, what’s the first thing that pops up? Bling! Bling! Hold your horses. Clichés are not our style. We started our design with the origin of the diamond: (crystallized) carbon. Diamonds consist entirely of crystallized carbon. Carbon can only crystallize at extremely high temperatures and pressure; circumstances found 150 kilometers below ground. Crystallized carbon rises to the surface through volcano eruptions, sealed in volcanic rock. The black rough stone that emerges from the heart of the earth has, after lots of grinding and polishing, a shiny core with many facets and colors. This is exactly what we see in the interior design. The walls are painted black and look like we’ve plastered them with carbon. At the center of the exposition an iridescent volume is shining in an array of colors and facets. Belgium, and Antwerp in particular, is a large player in the history of diamonds. An impressive 80% of the rough diamonds that are mined worldwide end up in Antwerp. The oldest existing document proving diamond trade in Antwerp, goes back to 1447, when a city magistrate proclaimed an edict stipulating that strong measures were to be taken to combat the trade in fake gemstones, including diamonds. Pretty hardcore, don’t you think? Even though the price of diamonds in the ‘Love the Diamond boutique’ can amount to millions of euros, the history lesson is for free. The past is female. Especially the past of the diamond trade. Quite exceptional at a time – starting from the 15thcentury – when women didn’t exactly have a lot of say in things. When walking through the exposition, graphic images and luminous books – that refer to old scriptures – tell the story of the Reyns sisters, leading diamond ladies of the 18thcentury, and the diamond. Within the room various pieces of furniture are displaying world-famous diamonds, including the Koh-I-Noor, an exceptional diamond of 109 carats. Another unique piece is the original register of the Reyns sisters. Storytelling, the exhibition of diamonds, the iridescent volume and the reference to carbon – there’s many facets that make this project shine,” explained Creneau International
- Location: Maasmechelen, Belgium
- Date completed: 2018
- Design: Creneau International