‘Our soles are red’ may be their tagline, not to mention anatomically correct, but if you wear a pair of Christian Louboutin for more than about 30 seconds then you’ll notice the iconic shoes lose their famous colouring. What’s the best solution? Put them on the Christmas tree. Or, better, create a Christmas tree using them. Either way, London has been waiting patiently for three whole weeks to see the unveiling of Christian Louboutin’s Claridge’s Christmas tree. Well the wait is finally  over.

The man himself was at the hotel, which he has long been a fan and guest of, to unveil not only the tree but The Loubi Express, a glittering red train stationed in the hotel’s famous black and white checkered lobby. The train will transport guests from London to Paris (obviously it won’t but it’s a lovely idea and something different for much-anticipated Claridge’s Christmas display.)

There was only one colour for Mr Louboutin to choose to deck the carriage in – his signature red, which seems all the more fitting at Christmas time. It gets better… for the first time Claridge’s has added an immersive element to the festive installation, and will be inviting guests to visit the carriage complete with four tables, its own Cocktail Conductor and classic Claridge’s canapés. It doesn’t get much more Christmassy than that.

Not wanting to be outshone by the carriage, the famous reinventing tree will still sit in the centre of the hotel lobby, reach an impressive five metres tall and be adorned with sparkling fairy lights, gold and red baubles, shoe-shaped gingerbread biscuits and  a glistening gold leaf crown on the top..

Commenting on his design, Louboutin said “It is such an honour to be invited to design the Claridge’s Christmas Tree, the hotel is my second home when in London and I am glad to bring a little piece of Paris to such an iconic London landmark.  The idea of travel has always been a key source of inspiration in my work and I wanted to capture the excitement and romance of it. There is something nostalgic about travelling by train, it reminds me of grand adventures and journeys home.”     

The Claridge’s Christmas tree has become a thing of legend, with the luxury hotel’s lobby playing seasonal host to some of fashion’s leading designers. Last year it was Diane von Furstenberg, who swapped wraparound dresses for designing an 18-foot sculptural blue shimmery tree. In 2017 Karl Lagerfeld won praise for turning his tree upside down (plot twist), while other icons who’ve tried their hand at what’s become an annual design-off include Apple’s Sir Jony Ive, Dolce & Gabbana (twice) and John Galliano for Dior (before all the Nazi stuff). A veritable Who’s-Who? of design.

Not, of course, as glad as all the fashion journalists and onlookers who will, of course, read deeply into what Louboutin has created, as they do each year. As, indeed, shall we.

The Loubi Express bar will be open from Friday 22nd November – 31st December 2019, Tuesdays to Saturdays from 5pm to midnight (closed Sundays and Mondays). Tables are allocated on a first come first served basis, and The Loubi Express operates a no reservation policy.


Obsessed with Louboutin’s design? Here’s all of Claridge’s previous designs