Bulgari, the legendary Italian jewelry and luxury goods brand, had its humble beginning as early as 1857, when Greek silversmith Sotirios Voulgaris opened a small jewelry shop in Epirus, Greece. After moving to Rome in 1881, Voulgaris changed his name to its Italian form, Bulgari, and opened another jewelry shop in the Italian capital. A second shop followed not long after, with its location in the famous Via Sistina. This shop would eventually be replaced in 1905 by the flagship store in Via dei Condotti. By this time, Bulgari had gained two assistants: his sons, Costantino and Giorgio. Two years after Bulgari’s death in 1932, his sons changed the company logo to the Latin form of the family name, Bvlgari.
In the 1950s and 1960s, Bulgari became a hotspot for artists, writers and actors of the time. Movie stars like Audrey Hepburn and Elizabeth Taylor could often be seen flashing Bulgari jewelry, which could be recognized at once by their rare and richly colored gems as well their fine diamonds. In 1966, with the death of Giorgio, his son Gianni and cousin Marina took over the family business. In the early 1970s, they expanded the business to include stores in New York, Paris, Geneva and Monte-Carlo. The year 1975 saw the company’s addition of a line of luxury watches, including what would become their signature “BVLGARI-BVLGARI” watch design. So successful was this design that the company founded a sister company, Bulgari Time, in Switzerland.
In the mid-1980s, the founder’s grandchildren, Paolo and Nicola Bulgari, and their nephew Francesco Trapani took over the family business. In an effort to diversity their products, Trapani, acting as CEO, released a line of Bulgari perfume in the early 1990s. The Bulgari company saw a substantial revenue growth during this decade, and by the year 2000, Bulgari had become a world-renowned brand, known not only for its boldly colored jewels, but for its innovative luxury watch designs. Throughout the next decade, Bulgari’s reach would extend to also include a new luxury hotel brand, Bulgari Hotel & Resorts, with locations around the world, including Bali, Milan, London, and Asia.
To this day, the Bulgari trademark is characterized by the brand’s iconic jewelry designs, which incorporate rare and brilliant gems like rubies, sapphires, and emeralds in unusual color combinations. Bulgari is also recognized as one of the world’s premier watchmakers. All of the luxury brand’s distinctive designs can be found in Bulgari stores and boutiques around the globe, including places like Tokyo, Mexico City, São Paulo, and Beverly Hills.