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Since 1974,
redefining what
a furniture showroom
can be.

Simultaneously, a classroom, gallery, laboratory and playground – Luminaire is most importantly a place of discovery, not just for design but how we can use it to accentuate and improve our lives.

Since age 16, I dreamed of having something like a church, where people could come to experience good design.”

— Nasir Kassamali, co-founder

Forty-seven years after its inception, Luminaire continues to evolve, always maintaining a leadership role in bringing the best designs from around the world to the American public and making good design an essential part of many lives.

The core philosophies of Luminaire – the necessity of design education, the desire for limitless inspiration, and the requirement of impeccably detailed execution – inhabit the company’s roots and extend far beneath the current landscape. From Kenya and of Indian ancestry, the Kassamalis emigrated to the United States in 1973. Presciently enamored by the work of visionaries such as Le Corbusier, Mies van der Rohe, Alvar Aalto, and Arne Jacobsen, their keen foresight stemmed from an intense appreciation for design and grew into a powerful desire to share this knowledge with the public, while making the highest level of contemporary, international products directly accessible to the consumer.

At the time of their arrival in the United States, superior home furnishings were restricted to interior designers who provided consumers with the only means of access to design showrooms open solely to the trade. Propelled by the motivation to remove barriers and democratize design, the Kassamalis distilled their long-standing dream into a singular concept: Luminaire. The company’s first showroom, specializing in European lighting, opened as a 500-square-foot kiosk in North Miami Beach in 1974, boldly blazing the path that would eventually make the finest offerings in international design directly available to the U.S. consumer.

Since its inception, Luminaire has continued to both expand and respond to the needs of an increasingly receptive audience. Within two years, its original store grew to 4,500 square feet as a wider range of products including furniture and accessories was added, many of them available for the first time in North America. In 1984, an award-winning flagship store designed by Mateu Architects was built in Coral Gables and five years later, a Chicago location debuted. With the turn of the millennium in January 2000, a 35,000-square-foot state-of-the-art corporate headquarters and distribution center designed by Mateu Carreno Rizo Partners was completed near the Miami Airport, garnering numerous design awards, while in April of the following year, the Chicago showroom expanded to occupy three floors of an old timber building in the heart of the River North area.

October 2002 saw the opening of Luminaire Contract in the Miami Design District, and in 2003, Luminaire opened the Boffi Kitchen and Bath showroom in Coral Gables, a space dedicated to promoting the concept of “essential living.” The opening of Luminaire Lab in January of 2007 marked a new approach. A deviation from the traditional showroom, the 15,000-square-foot store specializes in showcasing new and exclusive pieces from top manufacturers. With a constantly changing environment, it is an investigative playground that encourages visitors to think outside the box. Other concepts include Luminaire’s inviting showroom, Outdoor Therapy, which focuses on external environments, and LuminaireX, temporary “pop-up” spaces that feature design objects, fashion, coffee, flowers, music, and a gallery with film screenings, discussion groups and book signings.

A playground for design discovery

Through its curated showrooms, educational programming and philanthropic efforts, Luminaire has been a pioneer in design thinking and design retail in the United States, and has established itself as a timeless brand in the design industry

Over the years, the company has emphasized the necessity for design education and regularly sponsors curated exhibitions and hosts a lecture series every year which has featured design luminaries, such as Patricia Urquiola, Davide Groppi, Marcel Wanders, Antonio Citterio, Piero Lissoni, Philippe Starck, Richard Sapper, Ron Arad, Amanda Levete, the Bouroullec brothers, Ingo Maurer, Konstantin Grcic, Massimo and Lela Vignelli and Naoto Fukasawa, among many others.

A vision for expansion

In 2018, Luminaire added a west coast flagship showroom in Los Angeles that integrates the diverse backdrop of the city with Luminaire’s mission to educate and connect a broader audience to the power of good design. This expansion It mirrors what the company has been doing for nearly 50 years: exploring, embracing, connecting and communicating – moving people to think differently about how they live, what they love and how they experience the world around them.

Most recently, Luminaire has reimagined and expanded its flagship showroom in Coral Gables to feature two new concepts, Luminaire Loft and Outdoor Therapy. The newest incarnation of Outdoor Therapy, allows for a transformational, focused experience unlike any other. Aiming to engage visitors with a carefully curated selection of the best in contemporary outdoor furniture, the two new areas area reinforces the company’s founding principle that good design is a way of life and demonstrates that this concept should exist in both interior and exterior space.