By Joana Jervell

 We are at no. 22 on Rua das Flores street, right in the centre of Porto, waiting in anticipation for your visit to the flagship store of Claus Porto which recently opened its doors, an inauguration that signifies a moment of particular importance for the brand that is celebrating its 130-year journey in 2017. Founded by the Germans Ferdinand Claus and George Schweder, the iconic brand of soaps, fragrances and beauty products now has a new address in the city of its birth. It is a typical 19th century bourgeois three-storey house, which was renovated according to a project designed by the architect João Mendes Ribeiro.

On the ground floor – dominated by a handcrafted terrazzo mosaic with a pattern developed by Claus Porto, which pays homage to the strong visual identity represented by the brand – we encounter spaces dedicated to various lines produced by the brand. The Musgo Real collection is a highlight: it occupies an exclusive area at the end of the store, where the Musgo Real Hot Towel Shave, a traditional barber’s service, is provided on Saturdays, an ideal introduction to the products of the men’s collection.

Climbing up to the middle floor, the visitor is invited to revisit the past of the brand, in an exhibition consisting of a collection of documents, photographs and articles referring to the highlights of its history, with the addition of two other graphic designs, curated and installed by the designer Eduardo Aires (from White Studio). Finally, the top floor functions as a laboratory of ideas, hosting a series of workshops that provide an opportunity to get to know the process of manufacture of many of its products.

According to Francisco Neto, CEO of the brand, Rua das Flores was chosen for its “timeless charm, similar in every respect to that of Claus Porto” which finds, in this store, “a stage par excellence to present all of its sensory, visual and aromatic facets… enriched by its century-old history and the heartbeat of (its) city”, he adds.

Indeed, anyone taking a stroll along this pleasant pedestrian road will find it difficult not to notice the attractive storefronts (six in total) of this museum shop, which are the amazing work of set designer Pedro Rodrigues.

Apart from its signature soaps, the vast range of products include hand and body lotions, scented candles, shaving products, and more recently it has extended its offering to also include lifestyle products, such as the new Claus Porto soap dishes, stationery collections and range of teas.

Claus Porto is present in over 60 countries and is sold in the main luxury department stores, such as Bergdorf Goodman in the United States, Harrods in London, The Galeria in South Korea and Le Bon Marché in Paris.

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