It was exactly 130 years ago, in 1887, that the German entrepreneurs Ferdinand Claus and Georges Schweder created the first soap and fragrance factory in the Iberian Peninsula, in the city of Porto: Claus Porto.
As a way to celebrate this important milestone, the brand inaugurated in June the second Claus Porto national store, returning to the city that saw it born. The museum shop, located in number 22 of Flores Street, takes the whole building, a typical bourgeois house of the XIX century Porto, composed of three floors. The architecture, under the responsibility of architect João Mendes Ribeiro, includes a vertical garden in the staircase and a skylight that recovers the tradition of housing from the XIX century, in which the central staircase appeared normally associated with a skylight.
On the ground floor, the store welcomes visitors with a floor made of artisan hydraulic mosaics, with a custom pattern developed by Claus Porto, in honour of the inheritance of the brand’s graphic identity. This floor is partially taken by the space of the store itself, with areas dedicated to each of the lines of the brand – the collections Deco and Musgo Real are arranged in a large cabinet, recovered from the assets of the brand – as well as a common washbasin in marble stone, where customers can test products. The Musgo Real collection also has an exclusive space, a sitting area with a vintage barber chair, which can be closed and transformed into a small private room. It’s in this space that, on Saturdays, the “Musgo Real Hot Towel Shave” takes place, a traditional barber service that aims at introducing and trying the products of the brand’s male collection.
The middle floor is entirely dedicated to the history of Claus Porto – and where most of the brand’s patrimony is exposed, with the objective of bringing to light objects that, until now, were only available to some. Apart from an exhibition of internal curatorship, which tells the story of Claus Porto through a number of documents, photographs and objects related to the most important moments of the last 130 years – housed on furniture from the original factory – there are also two exhibitions of graphic design curated and installed by designer Eduardo Aires: one on the evolution of the Claus Porto logo and another on the image of the collection Musgo Real.
The top floor has a multifunctional space that, under the form of an apartment with a privileged view to Sé do Porto, aims not only at bringing Claus Porto products to life in a space that resembles its final destination – the consumers’ house –, but also at being a true laboratory of ideas and products, where the brand organizes several workshops.
The Claus Porto’s museum shop is open every day from 10h to 8h, inviting the people from Porto to get to know its products and the history of this brand born in Porto, 130 years ago, until reaching world notoriety.