Barovier&Toso lighting at the Hotel La Nauve

12-light Rosati chandelier in the Notes restaurant

Our festive end-of-year trip took us to the south-west of France, where a lunch break at the Notes restaurant at the Hotel La Nauve in Cognac turned into an exceptional gastronomic and aesthetic experience. Attracted by the reputation of chef Anthony Carballo, we were also eager to discover the splendour of a renovation that has transformed a former 19th-century mansion into an opulent 5-star Relais&Châteaux hotel.

Renowned local architect Éric Daigre, the mastermind behind this transformation, has orchestrated an artistic ballet by bringing together the region’s finest craftsmen. Among them was the renowned cabinetmaker Thierry Drevelle, whose talent has left an indelible mark on the rooms, bringing a timeless elegance to every corner of the hotel.

Light is a key element in the refined ambience of La Nauve, and this is where the excellence of the Venetian firm Barovier&Toso comes into play. Carefully selected Murano glass fixtures add a touch of splendour to the whole. Renowned for its centuries-old expertise, Barovier&Toso has captured the Venetian spirit and expressed it through lighting creations that blend perfectly with the elegant atmosphere of La Nauve.

Every corner of this Relais&Châteaux hotel bears witness to the perfect blend of 19th century history and contemporary luxury, creating an unforgettable sensory experience.

Giant chandelier above the cocktail bar

The Barovier&Toso epic began in 1295 with the first official document mentioning the master glassmaker. A century and a half later, the Barovier family wrote a new chapter in the history of glass with the revolutionary invention of a material of exceptional transparency and dazzling brilliance: Venetian crystal.

In 1455, Angelo Barovier obtained the exclusive right to produce “Cristallo Veneziano” or Venetian crystal, thus establishing the reputation of the Barovier family.

The 20th century was the second main act in the Barovier&Toso epic, marked by the emblematic presence of Ercole Barovier. A prolific and talented man, his creations are still the brand’s ultimate references. In 1936, Barovier & Toso joined forces to create the company we know today. Barovier&Toso chandeliers combine incomparable elegance with exceptional craftsmanship. In the world of interior design, Barovier&Toso remains a timeless icon of refinement in the city of the Doges.

We discovered this beautiful house during a stay in Venice, where we were able to visit the brand’s impressive showroom, located in a former factory on the island of Murano.

Waterfall chandelier in the grand staircase of the hotel

Every corner of this Relais & Châteaux hotel reflects the perfect blend of 19th century history and contemporary luxury, creating an unforgettable experience. La Nauve is the destination of choice for foodies looking for an escape where every detail counts. A celebration of the senses.

View of the hotel from the gardens

Buongiorno Moretti Luce !

Pièes en bronze séchant chez Moretti Luce
Brass parts are dried after surface treatment in the Moretti Luce workshops.

This week we took advantage of our time at the Milan Furniture Fair to visit Lumezzane. Lumezzane is a town of 30,000 inhabitants north of Brescia in Italy, nestled in the foothills of the Alps between Lake Garda and Lake Iseo. Its main feature is the presence of 1,000 companies, most of them industrial, based around the River Mella, which for centuries has provided them with the water and energy they need for steel and metalworking. It’s here that we have come to visit the factory of one of our oldest suppliers, Moretti Luce.

Founded in 1964 by Maurizio and Roberto Moretti’s father, the company started out making brass and zamac souvenirs for tourists from all over Europe, as well as decorative cups and swords. In the early 90’s the 2 brothers took over the family business and turned their attention to the design and manufacture of brass lighting. Roberto designs the models and organises the production, while Maurizio takes care of marketing and sales. Today, Maurizio’s son Simone has joined the team to take care of graphic design, communication and social networks.

Monsieur Moretti lui même
Roberto explains the technique used for this finish: lacquered brass on the inside and aged brass on the outside.

At the heart of the Moretti Luce collection are the classic outdoor luminaires in solid brass, with the famous verdigris patina that they keep a secret. The lamps are soldered, assembled, polished, painted, varnished and electrified in these workshops. The pieces are cast in the valley by companies in Lumezzane and the glass comes from Venice.

Pièces en bronze chez Moretti Lucce
The brass components, manufactured in the Lumezzane valley, await assembly.

Alongside this classic collection, the Moretti brothers are developing new, more contemporary concepts, while preserving the brand’s identity by favouring the use of high quality solid brass. This quality ensures that their luminaires will last even in extreme climates, outdoors, in the mountains and by the sea.

Photo de luminaire Moretti Luce
Three brass wall lights in the showroom of Moretti Luce’s studio in Lumezzane.

After a tour of the workshop, the very friendly Maurizio took us out to explore the shores of the enchanting Lake Iseo. We’re really happy to be working with the Moretti family. Happy to work in harmony with a serious and professional team, happy to offer our customers beautiful, well made, solid and durable lamps, happy to meet beautiful people and happy to turn this bond into a friendship.


Le lac d'Iseo, avec Moretti Luce

What’s new on Vraiment Beau

With the arrival of summer, our site evolves. And the ceiling fans from Whoo Whoo Whoo’s ave joined our catalogue!

First, security.

We have switched our site to https, which means that all your communications with our site are totally secure and encrypted with https. You can see this with the small padlock to the left of our address at the top of your browser. We remind you that your transactions are also secure (always were), since they take place on the website of Société Générale (one of the first French banks) or PayPal, and are also in “https”. So we never have access to your credit card numbers or the corresponding codes, and we cannot store them anywhere on our site.

At the same time, we have worked on the response speed of our site. It has always been a priority for us, but it has improved even further. We have a broad range of great products, and we think it’s important that you can browse through them without slowing down.

Then ergonomics.

On the desktop and tablet version, we’ve enlarged by a third the product pictures that we present in our catalogues and on our home page. We hope this will allow you to better appreciate the beauty of our fixtures, and the quality of their finish. On our site for mobile phone, we have chosen to keep the same size as before, to favour loading speed when your connection is not too good.

If you want to enjoy all the details of our high-resolution photos, we suggest you use a tablet or desktop computer.

We have also improved the carousels on the home pages: you can now go back or choose the image that caught your attention by clicking on the buttons. And you will jump the page of the corresponding brand by clicking on the image.

Finally, the products: for the summer, the ceiling fans of Whoo Whoo Whoo!

You will find many new brands and products on our English site (and even more on our French site: just click on the small flag at the top of the page, look at the pictures and call us if you want us to translate the descriptions for you !). As always, we select the most beautiful fixtures designed by artists who love their art, and manufactured with care, preferably in Europe.

And of course, you can discover our brands on our page all our brands.

Spanish Masters Exhibition (Salvador Dali, Antonio Gaudi and Arturo Alvarez), DDC Gallery, New York

Arturo Alvarez at Spanish Masters exhibition in New York

Arturo Alvarez: From Designer to artist, 20 years of passion

The exhibition “Spanish Masters Exhibition”, organized by the Domus Design Collection in New York which opened its doors on March 02, is a true recognition by the world of contemporary art for the work of Arturo Alvarez. The silhouettes of “Conversas” and “Encontros”, the last productions of the artist, are associated in this event with works by Antonio Gaudi, Salvador Dali and Pablo Picasso, three of the greatest references of the the 20th century’s art from The Iberian Peninsula. Among other works, the exhibition presents the huge doors designed by Gaudí in 1904 for Casa Batlló, in polished and carved wood, as well as a collection of Dalí’s furniture, including a chair and a gold table with stilettoed stilettos, testimonies of the surrealist genius of the artist. Many pieces come from the personal collection of Babak and Siamak Hakakian, hosts of the event. But it is the original works of Arturo Alvarez that captivate the attention of the visitor. Two of his installations are particularly remarquable: “Encontros” illuminated silhouettes of lanky giants; And the “Conversas” figurative forms made of metal mesh illuminated by a suspended light source. With Conversas, the light projects a shadow of the sculptures on the white wall and if the light is swinged, the silhouettes animate and enter into conversation.

For 20 years, Arturo Alvarez, born in Pontevedra, Galicia, has designed inspired lighting fixtures and luminous objects. Drawing his inspiration from his native land and sensitive to the local nature, he has set his workshop in a beautiful garden in the countryside of Santiago de Compostela.

Arturo Alvarez's workshop in Santiago de Compostela Arturo Alvarez’s workshop on the heights of Santiago de Compostela

A true enthusiast of handicrafts, he does not hesitate at the beginning of his career to adopt the welding techniques used by the Tiffany house, this English manufacturer of Luminaires who welds hundreds of coloured glass pieces into beautiful lampshades. Arturo Alvarez learns to weld before producing his own collections of luminaires using this method of assembly, and develops a very personal style, contemporary and modern, inspired by Art Deco and Art Nouveau. After this period, he explores forms inspired by nature and women’s bodies, while evolving towards more graphic and geometric lines. In the last 10 years, he has been conducting research and development to invent a new material, the Simetech, a fine metal frame impregnated with very malleable and irregular resin, with which he created an important collection of luminaires, and several monumental compositions with airy structures.

Composition monumentale Coral - Arturo Alvarez
Monumental composition Coral – Arturo Alvarez

Grand lustre Coral - Arturo Alvrarez
Detail from the Coral composition – Arturo Alvarez

We at Vraiment Beau discovered this artist in 2012 and have been working with him ever since. We immediately loved his sensibility, his proximity to nature and his universe. We are proud to offer you his superb collection of luminaires.

Tips for navigating Vraiment Beau’s site

Compass on map

Vraiment Beau offers you more than 80 brands and 5000 products, carefully selected for their beauty and the quality of their manufacturing. Here are some tips to help you find your way on our site, and find what you are looking for faster. You will see two versions of the site, depending on whether you […]

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Vanessa Mitrani, one of the most beautiful stands of Maison et Objets

The booth of Vanessa Mitrani at Maison & Objet 2018

Vanessa Mitrani still amazes us at Maison et Objets! Vanessa Mitrani is a unique character in the current landscape of design and creation. Vanessa Mitrani, expert in handling blown glass, creates, manufactures and distributes her own collections. For 15 years, she has been conjugating her favorite themes – links, ties, constraints and glass – in […]

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Welcome to the Blog of Vraiment Beau

Seeing the success of our posts on Facebook and of our Guide pages, we decided to introduce the Blog of Vraiment Beau. We will present new brands and new products that captivate us, the trends we discover during our research, and also the stories of craftsmen who manufacture these beautiful objects. We will also use […]

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