Designed to last as long as the sea rolls in

Gemla Fabrikers is Sweden’s oldest furniture maker. A grand heritage to cherish, but also a challenge in keeping the company contemporary and relevant. The project La Co(o)rniche on the west coast of France is a good example of how Gemla has succeeded.

Gemla Fabrikers has a 160-year-old history of making furniture in their own traditional way – with a bentwood technique, resulting in furniture that lasts an incredibly long time.

The export project La Co(o)rniche on the west coast of France is a project where Gemla was part of the remake of what once was an old fisherman’s cottage.
We asked Benny Hermansson to present the case a bit more in detail.

“La Co(o)rniche is a fantastic building, originally a fisherman’s cottage that has always been on the dunes overlooking Bassin d’Arcachon. The restaurant has been given a makeover by Philippe Starck’s office, and they chose to use the VILDA 5 chair designed by Jonas Bohlin in white-oiled ash with vegetable-tanned leather. They have designers with a Swedish connection in their office, and we have been involved in six projects with them so far.”

Apart from the durability and the excellent design, there is a certain reason why Gemla was chosen, according to Benny. Gemla has worked hard on its their sustainability journey. As soon as Benny entered Gemla, they started a major project looking at all the sustainability aspects. From wood certification and artificial materials to tanning and finishing methods.

In addition, bentwood and the technology Gemla use is highly resource-efficient. Their manufacturing process creates very little waste. And the stuff lasts an incredibly long time, which is also a relevant aspect of sustainability.

The boundless project

From the woods in Småland to the coast of France.
Export project: La Co(o)rniche.




The Vilda 5-chair


Jonas Bohlin


Philippe Starck