Saint Tropez conjures up many images: celebrities, summer, sunshine and sandy beaches. Swimwear brand Vilebrequin, which was born at the French Riviera, now brings a whiff of this art-de-vivre to Jakarta by opening its first store at Plaza Indonesia.
The story of Vilebrequin starts in the early 1970s when Fred Prysquel, a French photographer and journalist, fell in love with a charming young lady who resided in Saint Tropez.
“At the time, everybody just spent the whole day at the beach,” said Vilebrequin CEO Roland Herlory during his visit to Jakarta in October. “The men used to wear very short briefs, but Fred Prysquel [felt uncomfortable] because he thought that he didn’t have the right body for it.”
Since necessity is the mother of invention, Fred Prysquel decided to create his own swimwear, inspired by the swimsuits of surfers at the time and adding a French touch. The longer boxer-short style was an instant hit.
“People kept asking, where did you get these? And when he said that it was his own design, they wanted to know, would you do one for me too?”, Roland Herlory explained.
Fred Prysquel then started to produce men’s swimwear in Saint Tropez (he also won the lady’s heart in the end and eventually married her), and spiked up the sales at the little boutiques along the Saint Tropez beaches. The very first model he wore, Moorea, is still carried in stores today.
Over the past 45 years, Vilebrequin has developed into one of the most sought-after swimwear brands in the world and can count celebrities such as Jude Law and Prince William as their customers.
“We have created a style which is a world reference and we brought swimwear to a very high-end level,” Roland Herlory said.
Constantly evolving, Vilebrequin introduced its “Father & Son” concept in 1995. The brand’s youthfulness and dedication to family values led to an expansion of the range, now including also swimwear for boys as young as six months old.
Three years ago, Vilebrequin also added a “Mother & Daugther” line to its ever-growing collection, as well as resort wear and beach accessories which are also available at the new store in Jakarta.
“I am very excited to bring Vilebrequin to Jakarta and hope that we will have a big number of Indonesian customers very soon,” said Roland Herlory.
Plaza Indonesia, Level 1
Jl. M.H. Thamrin Kav. 28-30, Jakarta Pusat
T: +62-21 2992 4336