Today its been exactly 3 months that i’ve been blogging and its been so much fun to cover all things girly and I’ve forgotten all about the boys. So after complaints that I havnt written anything for them, my last couple of posts and this one are just for them. So in the fashion section we have Mr India Kawaljit Anand doing a review of India’s favourite shopping websites for men, in the Interesting Stuff section we have an article about the fledging graphic comics industry in India (“You’re not a real Salman Khan fan unless..”). And this article which is about the advent of bespoke in Pune is again for the men.
Lately I’d been hearing a lot about the up and coming luxury market in Pune. The rumours refused to die down ever since Hermes chose to open their very first showroom in India in Pune instead of Bombay and gained momentum with the completion of the Phillip Stark apartments in Pune. With that and with the news of the upcoming Trump Towers-again in my favourite city, i knew the time was ripe to cover Pune’s burgeoning luxury lifestyle market.
I chose to cover “Primo” which is a luxury lifestyle store for men as a representative of this up and coming industry. “Primo” focuses on bespoke clothing for men. Apart from that, it also has a selective range of handcrafted accessories, a specialised travel concierge desk and an art curator service.The accessories are exotic and cover things like monogrammed leather trunks, the art curator service has available luxury period furniture as well as art from up and coming and established artists. And “Primo” will shortly be coming out with its own range of bar accessories and cigars as well.
What caught my attention though was the bespoke travel bit and on much pestering and with a promise to reveal no names, Sachin Nagrale (owner/ promoter Primo) did tell me a few exotic stories. Amongst the experiences availed off had been a one night drinking session with Charlie Sheen and a weekend spent with Richard Branson on his private island (true stories :-)) For those less inclined for a walk on the wild side, were available tamer things like a Wimbledon package (which offers everything from a limo pick up service, the best seats etc) to specialised whiskey tours through Scotland.
Coming back to what “Primo” is best known for, we decided to explore further into their range of bespoke wear. Now, the term bespoke in fashion is reserved for men’s clothing, similar to women’s haute couture and in contrast to mass manufactured ready-to-wear. The distinguishing points of bespoke tailoring are typically the buyer’s total control over the fabric used, the features and fit, and the way the garment should be made. To judge how “Primo” fared in the bespoke test, we asked our man-about-town Ajinkya Firodia to visit “Primo” as a difficult to please customer and critic.
For the non-Pune people who may not know him, Ajinkya is the MD at Kinetic Engineering and the scion of the Pune based Firodia family. On his first visit to Primo, he sat down with Chandan Gandhi (Head Designer-Men’s Wear Primo) and went through a large selection of Italian fabric including cashmere, linen, herringbone or cotton-finally selecting Egyptian cotton as the fabric he wanted.
Post the selection of fabrics and the cuts he wanted and the initial measurements, Ajinkya went through yet another detailed fitting session before being presented with the finished garment. We have a picture below of Ajinkya and Chandan and to quote Ajinkya, “I normally tend to do all my shopping while travelling and was initially sceptical. However, I must say I am very impressed not just with the cut, quality and the finish of the trousers and the shirt that I got made but also with the whole old world charm and luxury of the store. The personalised attention i received at Primo and the whole ambience of the store which is modelled in the old French villa style made the whole experience a pleasure and i intend to definitely visit there again”
After getting a five star rating from Ajinkya, we can definitely say that “Primo” not only passed the test but raised the bar on what the well dressed man should be wearing. The well dressed men in Pune-now you know-all roads lead only to Lane No 7, Kalyani Nagar where “Primo” is located. 🙂
More on Pune later- but stay tuned because in my very next blog post on the good life. i will be covering a newly opened food botique and patisserie in South Bombay. The picture below is just a sneak preview of one of its offerings-its called a “Espresso Molten Chocolate Cake” which is a combination of freshly brewed Espresso and molten Chocolate Cake… All you need to do is microwave and then sit back and enjoy the wicked, wicked combination of Coffee and Chocolate……yum! I promise to try this and more out and tell you all about it the next time around, so till then, people-over and out!