Over 100 years old, Bulgari was founded in 1884 by Sotirios Voulgaris. The name Bulgari came from the phonetic pronunciation of the founder’s surname. Voulgaris was a silversmith, beginning with just one jewellery shop in Rome, having moved there from Greece. These Greco-Roman roots, combined with inspiration from Italy have influenced the brand from the start and right up to the present day.
The 1940’s saw the introduction of the seminal serpent motif, of which has lasted throughout time and remains iconic to the brand and popular to this day. In the 1950’s, Bulgari grew in popularity, their jewellery exhibited in many Hollywood films of the time and adorned by stars such as Elizabeth Taylor and Audrey Hepburn. The 1970’s saw the opening of Bulgari shops in New York, Geneva, Paris and Monte Carlo.
Today, Bulgari is part of the LVMH group, with Lucia Silvestri as Creative Director. Bulgari has expanded from jewellery alone into watches, accessories, bags and fragrance. Having been known for their bold jewellery and daring combinations of metals, colour and gemstones, the brand continues to create trendsetting pieces following these principles. Decadence is achieved through the combinations of metals, stones and colour. The classic glamour ever present in Bulgari designs is now given a contemporary feel, blending Roman themes with modernity.
The logo for Bulgari, ‘BVLGARI’ was first used in 1934, on the flagship store in Rome. The ‘V’ represents the brand’s ties to Ancient Rome, though the ‘V’ is only used when writing in reference to the logo.
Bulgari has a network of almost 300 stores, the largest of which is located in Tokyo, which includes a lounge bar and restaurant. Bulgari products are available on the brand’s website, as well as online through Farfetch, Selfridges and Harrods.