La Martina has two very strong elements to its brand: the 'legitimacy' of its polo equipment and saddlery and the rich heritage of the sport. Founder Lando Simonetti says that saddle-making is in the DNA of the brand, and as a six year old he would sit and help his father stitch the saddles. His international business is intricately linked with the sport of polo, but it is primarily a heritage rather than a luxury brand. "We don't use polo to promote the brand, we are polo!"
Martin Ambridge, Manager of the two London La Martina stores, stresses the importance of the quality of the craftsmanship of the leather saddles that are still made in Argentina as well as the skill used to produce the all-important polo mallet. All the leather is sourced in Argentina, and even shipped to Italy where La Martina's handbags are made.
Here's what he had to say about heritage at our third Future Cities Forum in London:
La Martina has developed a 'club' feel to its different stores around the world and in London all visitors are allowed the time and space to make themselves comfortable on the sofas to reflect on their clothing and equipment needs. "It's a hub, not just a store" Martin comments.