Mario Luca Giusti carried out with recycled plastic for plates and glasses

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For a long time, plastic plates and glasses were considered ugly objects, to be used only in case of necessity, when you were outdoors or when there were many of you, and to be hidden as soon as possible. A change of pace was introduced by Mario Luca Giusti, a Florentine footwear entrepreneur who, sixteen years ago, had the intuition of bringing new colors and shapes to a “tired” sector, using materials such as melamine and acrylic which are light, resistant, durable. The idea was born by chance, from the purchase in Spain of some cylindrical glass glasses which attracted the attention and enthusiasm of the shoe customers in Florence. There was room for creativity applied to the table, Giusti thought.

The contemporary design expressed on the tableware immediately hit the mark: glasses with unusual shapes, but also classic ones revisited with lightness thanks to what Giusti calls “synthetic crystal”; fun and easy to handle cups that imitate porcelain ones; plates decorated with flowers and fantastic figures; pop jugs like the one called “Palla” which became a best seller. All the objects convey joy, fun, freshness, giving substance to perhaps the most powerful innovation, which was to clear plastic tableware from customs, now no longer designed only for outdoor dinners, for the swimming pool or on the boat, but also for elegant and refined tables and for luxury hotels. This is how, thanks to style and creativity, the product went from low to high end.

Every year the Mario Luca Giusti collections expand, as happened in recent days at the Parisian fair Maison&Objet where the brand presented the first two trays, including a round one with scalloped edges in the single-colour red, yellow, blue and ivory variants with contrasting profiles , and a sphere-shaped water jug, pot-bellied and tasty.

Today the Florentine company has a turnover of more than seven million euros, 70% of which is abroad, has four single-brand stores (two in Florence, one in Milan and one in Rome) and is about to open a fifth in Cap Ferrat, on the Costa Azzurra, following a corner in the London department store Harrods.

Mario Luca Giusti’s glamorous products are distributed in 1,300 points of sale, from Europe to the USA, from Turkey to the United Arab Emirates. And the Middle East itself represents the new frontier of development for the brand, even if Giusti is not thinking of starting a substantial retail plan because he prefers “not to push the product too much, which must be sought and pursued”, he explains.

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