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Dolce & Gabbana heads to Melbourne

Dolce & Gabbana has become the latest international luxury brand to hit Australian shores, with the Italian fashion house set to open its flagship outlet on the Paris end of Collins Street in Melbourne.

The label, which has been fronted by likes of Scarlett Johansson and Monica Bellucci, is expected to open its doors by the middle of the year in a new high-end retail and food precinct at 171 Collins Street.

D&G will occupy 320 square metres of space at the front and first floor of the heritage-listed Mayfair Building, which is located a few doors up from the Regent Theatre and Westin hotel.

Owners Charter Hall and CBus Property are close to completing a $280 million redevelopment of the property, which includes a new 17-floor office tower connected to the Mayfair through a retail arcade.

Estate agency Fitzroys is believed to have negotiated the deal but declined to comment.

The so-called Paris end of Collins Street is already home to more than 20 luxury brands including Chanel, Prada, Hermes, Bally, Cartier and Gucci. Retailers pay about $4000 per square metre to secure spot on the prestigious strip.

Max Cookes, associate director of retail services for agency CBRE, said the arrival of each luxury brand made the precinct even more attractive to other retailers looking for a flagship location.

‘‘The neighbouring tenants is one of the most crucial factors for these brands when identifying a suitable site," he said.