This week our marketing team had the privilege of visiting the beautiful city of Madrid. As curious as we are we paid a visit to a few flower shops to get a peek in the life of Spanish florists.
Fransen et Lafite
If you ever go to Madrid, you definitely have to visit flower shop: Fransen et Lafite. It’s a great experience and we’re sure you’ll love it! It all started with the Dutch Patrick Fransen, who opened up this shop together with his French/Spanish companion Javier. They thought of a great concept while decorating the store. Everything in the shop is focussed on interior and flowers/plants. When we walked into their shop it felt like we were entering a fairy tale. This experience was enhanced by the peacock and the deer on the wall and the jellyfish in glass.
Patrick Fransen: “I came to Madrid to study Spanish, and suddenly the idea of starting my own flower shop came to my mind. I always loved flowers and I was working for a well-known flower shop in Holland, but I didn’t expect that I would start my own shop right in the centre of Madrid.”
We also paid a visit to the beautiful flower shop Bourguignon, where we met with Michael Bourguignon. This flower shop was founded in 1930 in the centre of Madrid. With over 85 years of experience, this shop is well-known for its superb quality. In the mid-eighties, they opened their second shop. They mostly create high-end bouquets and arrangements. Unlike most Madrid flower shops Bourguignon’s flower assortment is quite extensive.
The flower culture in Spain
As you might expect, the flower culture in Spain differs from the floral habits in the UK. The florists that we spoke told us that the average flower knowledge of a Spanish customer is very limited. They are in need of some floral education. That’s why, at Bourguignon, they attach a card to every order with a basic step by step guide of how the recipient should take care of the flowers.
Another remarkable anecdote was about the delivery of flowers. Patrick from Fransen et Lafite said that it’s customary to let the flowers be delivered, you don’t pick them up yourself. So for instance, if you have a dinner party that same night, you don’t bring the flowers with you. No, you let the flowers be delivered before the party so the host(ess) can rearrange the flowers before all the guests arrive.
Retail is a difficult business in Spain, that is why most florists in Madrid focus on event floristry. Since the people in Madrid know how to throw a party, event floristry means big business.
While florists in the UK are facing a lot of competition from supermarkets, this almost doesn’t exist in Spain. Although this sounds amazing, in Spain it’s less common to buy flowers on a regular basis. Spanish people mostly only buy flowers for special occasions such as Mother’s Day.
Do you want to know more about floristry in other countries? Read our interview with a Dutch florist in the biggest flower town.