Back to the future: Louis XIII

Join Louis XIII Cognac as it time travels at its new London flagship boutique in Harrods

Food and Drink 28 Jul 2022

The new Louis XIII boutique at Harrods
The sinuous curves of the new Louis XIII boutique

Prestigious cognac house Louis XIII has opened its first dedicated store in London, with a striking look that describes an allegory of time. The location for the exclusive store is, unsurprisingly, Harrods, and the space represents a moment in which the heritage of the brand meets a new futuristic aesthetic. Soft and winding lines on the walls, the ceiling and the furniture all echo the swirl of time. This is a defining element that reoccurs in the new Louis XIII visual identity, conceived by French architecture firm RDAI.

Organic materials such as plaster and wood pay homage to the unique terroir of the hilly Grande Champagne region of Cognac. The heart and premier cru of Cognac, these vineyards’ soft chalky soil and the temperate micro-climate play an important role in creating Louis XIII’s much-loved eaux-de-vie.

The elegant new Louis XIII boutique is now open at Harrods
The elegant new Louis XIII boutique is now open at Harrods

Merging physical and virtual worlds, the boutique wants to surprise customers with unique artefacts and educational content: a digital screen wall and coveted limited editions open a gateway to the roots of the French cognac house. Michael Ward, managing director of Harrods, says, ‘This space creates a modern and sensual environment for clients to enter the Louis XIII universe and discover daring innovations going beyond the product.’

Not that the liquid itself is not a daring exploration of the possibilities of cognac – a symbol of exclusive rarity and unmatched craftsmanship. Louis XIII cognac is a blend of 1,200 of the finest eaux-de-vie and undergoes a maturation process that can take up to 100 years.

The brainchild of Paul-Emile Rémy Martin, who created it in 1874, Louis XIII soon stood out not only for its recipe that included only the oldest clear fruit brandies, but also for its innovative packaging. The now famous Baccarat crystal decanter was the first alternative cognac container to barrels. Inspired by a metal flask from the Battle of Jarnac (1569) and decorated with the signature fleur-de-lys, the bottle has barely changed in nearly 150 years. It is still handcrafted, and mouth-blown… another allegory of the preciousness of time.;