n the centre of Milan, a relaxing walk through the Agape12 concept store takes us around the greatest wonders of the world of bathrooms. Agape12 was set up in 2012 by Agape, one of the most renowned brands in the world of bathroom interiors. Since then, the Brerastore of this brand from Mantova, northern Italy, has been promoting the best on the interior design scene, also going beyond bathroom interiors.
We are in Brera, the old bohemian neighbourhood of the city of Milan, which has recently been elected Design District and flooded by design lovers during the Salone del Mobile. The entrance to this historic building in via Statuto is slightly tucked away. This minimalist feature embodies Agape’s design philosophy: a modern and refined elegance which focuses on function and, without fashionable glamour, wants to stand the test of time.
The back of the showroom faces an internal courtyard. The early twentieth century industrial windows are of a time when this building was a metal workshop, a small trinket business. However, times change and in the nineties Cappellini opened-up a store here, asking outstanding designer Piero Lissoni to carry out the entire building renovation. It so happens that Camilla Benedini, Bibi and Giampaolo’s daughter, who founded Agape with Emanuele, was then a junior architect at studio Lissoni. Twenty years on, and with her own interior design practice, she has come full circle: Camilla has redesigned the entire showroom layout.
Period windows fill with light the raised ground floor, which faces the courtyard. The latest pieces on display include: 661 on-top washbasin with Square taps and Flat XL set by Benedini Associati, finished in raw clay by Matteo Brioni, Plus fronts by Javier Lopez (full display by Agape). Left-hand side, Trapezi tiles by Made a Mano and Ipazia pendant lamps, designed by Marco Merendi. Right-hand side, Lariana bathtub by Patricia Urquiola and Memory heated towel rack by Benedini Associati (full display by Agape).
Left-hand side, Evoluzione set, Fez taps and 4X4 mirror with storage (Benedini Associati) and Nivis washbasin (Andrea Morgante - Shiro Studio). On washstand, Gemma canisters by Sebastian Herkner for Agape. Tiles by Made a Mano and Zoe pendant lamp by Marco Merendi. Right-hand side, In-Out bathtub in Nero Marquina marble and Memory taps, design Benedini Associati for Agape, timber and marble flooring Lema by Benedini Associati.
Furniture and home accessories is on the ground floor. There are new pieces developed in partnership with Claesson Koivisto Rune, Anglepois and Brokis. Next to it, the brand's historic partners like AgapeCasa, which includes: furniture series by Mangiarotti, elegant radiators by Antrax IT, iconic American chairs by Emeco, extraordinary glass kitchenware by Knindustrie and terracotta tiles by Made a Mano. Tiles and cladding are displayed on the basement floor, whereas the third floor is effectively an apartment in full working order. Plus, the top-floor kitchen leads to a terrace with views over the city.
Agape12 is a wonderful journey through the world of interior design, a space which exudes peace and wellbeing. Camilla Benedini has fine-tuned a building, which she says benefits from having “fortunate architecture”, a place with intrinsic beauty where pieces chosen by Agape harmonize with their surroundings. Four floors and 850 sqm, slow down and take all the time you need, it’s definitely worth it!
Agape 12 – Concept Store
Via Statuto 12, Milan, Italy
Tel: 0039 02 98656466
Mon: 15.00 – 19.00
Tue – Sat: 10.00 – 19.00
Closed on Sondays