Lebanon exports world’s most expensive chocolate
Patchi, the famous Lebanese luxury chocolate-makers, have taken decadence to a new level. Recently, they launched the world’s most prestigious and expensive box of chocolate, turning the ubiquitous treat into a coveted possession.
When it comes to selling luxury chocolates, packaging really is everything. Designers at Patchi began with the box itself, a beautiful, leather-wrapped cover that is hand-embroidered with high-quality silk from India and China. This is only the beginning, however.
Upon opening the box, the chocolate connoisseur will find 49 hand-wrapped chocolates ensconced in soft suede leather, separated by gold and platinum linings. In case that isn’t enough, each chocolate is adorned with either a 24-carat gold flower and Swarovsky crystal or a handcrafted, miniature silk rose.
The gold-plated plaque inside of the box leaves space for a dedication, which is meant to be personally engraved.
Despite all the glitziness, the box has a beautiful, elegant appearance, and the colors are subdued. It currently sells at the renowned London-based department store Harrods, with the hefty price tag of 5,000 British pounds (currently about $7,824, but closer to $10,000 before recent drastic changes in exchange rates).
Patchi, which opened in 1974, quickly established itself as the destination for sophisticated chocolate lovers who are also seduced by unique and attractive packaging. With the success of their chocolates worldwide, they have branched into other areas in the luxury market, such as a handmade silverware line and ornamented accessories. They are also known for their array of exquisite handmade roses, which add a delicate and pretty touch.
Nadine Haikal owns a boutique in Hamra called Cocodine, which sells gifts and chocolates. Her shop has been open for almost three years, and most of her chocolates are imported from Belgium. When asked what she thought of the world’s most expensive box of chocolate, she said, “There would be no customer here for that.
“With what’s happening with the economy people aren’t even buying kilos – they buy grams, or even pieces!” she asserted. “There is no market for it here.”
Still, said Haikal, “business is good.”
Cocodine sells a variety of vessels, including silverware, Czech glassware, and hand-painted ceramics. Selling gifts in fancy boxes help stores increase revenues. If a customer chooses to purchase a vessel with the chocolate included prices can reach close to $1,000.
“I like those customers!” said Haikal.
Even Haikal’s top prices don’t approach that of the world’s most expensive box of chocolate, and such customers are rare. Buyers of the Patchi-designed extravagant luxury item might be even rarer.
Filed under: Culturel, Strictly Lebanese | 5 Comments
Tags: Chocolate, Luxury, Patchi