Twenty-five years ago, Vico Magistretti, one of the giants in postwar Italian design, created Nathalie, a bed that broke ground in several ways. First, its base and headboard were fitted with removable fabric covers, giving it the chameleonlike ability to match any decor. Second, it offered a choice of bases (rigid, storage, aluminum), support surfaces (slatted, orthopedic, grid, manually or electrically adjustable), pillows, and mattresses. And third, it came with a selection of linens, duvets, covers, and cases. It was, in short, a complete bedding system. In the quarter century since, Flou, the Milan-based company that commissioned Nathalie, has developed this all-inclusive idea so that today it makes not only 40 sleekly integrated bed systems by such innovative designers as Rodolfo Dordoni, Massimo Iosa Ghini, and Enzo Mari, but also an encyclopedic array of other luxury bedroom products: sleepwear, bedside tables, chairs, benches, reading lamps. With the recent opening of the company's first retail store in the United States, a 5,000-square-foot loftlike space in New York's SoHo, Americans will be able to see just how comprehensive (and seductive) Flou's world of sleep is—in a setting fit for their dreams.
Flou, 42 Greene Street, New York; 212-941-9101; www.flou.com.