Moe Samuel opened a modest furniture store on Vancouver’s Arbutus street in 1972, carrying a casual range of kitchen tables and chairs. It was a far cry from the furniture emporium that today outfits some of Vancouver’s ritziest homes.
“One day, a local interior designer asked Moe if he could supply her with Henredon, a famous American high-end brand,” says Liz Miller, sales and design manager at Samuel’s company — which is now run by his son, Oren, and is called Paramount Home & Design. “That request set us on a path to where we are today.”
Samuel sought other high-end brands and began curating the finest furnishings and decor. He moved the company to its present location on Richmond’s Minoru Boulevard in 1976. Its showroom is ten times the size of his original, 5,000-square-foot spot. Paramount is now a one-stop shop known across the lower mainland not only for its products, but also for its design team.
“The design team handles in-home visits, floor plans, scale drawings, 3D renderings,” says Miller. “We can completely furnish an entire home in a day.”
Paramount will display some of its carefully curated collections at the Luxury Home & Design Show in Vancouver June 21–24, hosted by our sister media, Taste of Life. Like Paramount, the show brings together some of the best works of craftsmanship from around the world.
“Some manufacturers are huge, global companies while others we represent employ fewer than 100 people and still make everything by hand,” Miller says. “We have worked hard over the years to cultivate important and meaningful relationships with each of our suppliers as they all bring something valuable.”
Among the objects Paramount will bring to the Luxury Home & Design Show is a Constantini Pietro dining table featuring the famed Murano glass. The process of making glass on the Venetian island of Murano has been refined over centuries. The wood framing of this table is also special; Constantini started in 1922 with “a great family passion for wood,” and has thrived as a family business for three generations. The entire production process for a piece of Constantini furniture occurs in-house at its workshop in Udine, Italy.
Paramount will bring pieces by famed American designer Windsor Smith, who has received great acclaim, including Veranda magazine’s decision to honour her as one of the top 25 design influencers in their 25-year history.
Another designer Paramount will feature has a similar story to its own: Marge Carson started her business in 1947 by converting an old chicken coop into a custom upholstery shop. Her creativity and commitment to quality lifted her small business to great heights, and she was soon helping furnish the finest of homes.
With a wide range of styles from contemporary to traditional, Paramount doesn’t limit its wares to any particular design direction. “If we have a ‘signature,’ it is quality,” says Miller. The focus is on keeping things fresh, staying with fabrics and finishes that are current, and working with the regional West Coast aesthetic.
Miller comments on some current trends Paramount is seeing: “We find grays are still really strong, and the use of brass and gold continues to gain in popularity. We have moved away from the farmhouse or industrial trend of recent years, but heavy textures continue to be used in more streamlined styles.”
“As we move forward, we will see colour becoming more prominent: think deep blues and greens, rich reds, traditionally patterned rugs,” she continues. “I’m also seeing a lot of black, including walls and even the kitchen sink.”
As for what’s ahead, Paramount is ready to move to a new showroom — a rise to even greater heights, like that first move in the 1970s when the business expanded rapidly.
“We are about to begin construction on a brand new showroom,” Miller says, though she will not yet reveal the location. “We aim for it to be the most spectacular home furnishings store in all of B.C.”