Winston Flowers Acquires NYC’s L’Olivier Florists

Photo: Olivier Giugni, Ted and David Winston

By Jill Brooke 

In one of the biggest gatherings of floral talent, Boston-based Winston Flowers announced that the company is acquiring New York’s famed L’Olivier Florists. 

These two powerhouse flower shops have been catering to a discerning high-end clientele for decades in their communities. 

It’s a smart move for Winston Flowers, which also expanded in 2012 to open a store in Greenwich, Connecticut. Last year, it opened a 12,000-square-foot NYC design studio to add to its petal portfolio. 

L’Olivier, run by the affable Olivier Giugni, is known for modern lush designs. In fact, the shop provided weekly florals to hotels ranging from the Plaza to the Carlyle Hotel. I’m a personal fan of their amazing candle line which insiders know really deliver on fragrance – especially the Mai Flowers scent.

In a way it’s as though Neiman Marcus was merging with Bergdorf Goodman. 

“With flowers, more plus more is a good thing,” observes  publicist R. Couri Hay, the president of R. Couri Hay Creative PR, whose clients include Isabelle Bscher, Audrey Gruss’ Hope for Depression Research Foundation, Art Miami and Galerie Gmurvynska.  

“With this merger, it doubles the creative energy and designs teams that you wouldn’t get if they remained separate,” he adds. “They can easily scale larger event galas while catering to the arrangements people want every week.Together they are stronger and more powerful.”

Olivier Guigni will join Winston Flowers as Senior Design Consultant and Carine Bonnet, L’Olivier’s General Manager, will take over as General Manager of Winston Flowers’ New York Design Studio in Long Island City. 

“As we celebrate 25 years of business, it’s also important to look to the future,” said Guigni. “This partnership with Winston Flowers will allow us to offer our valued clientele even more personalized floral services, while continuing to reach new customers. As L’Olivier’s talented creative and concierge services teams join those at Winston, we’re excited to offer our clients exquisite floral design under one iconic brand.”

The truth is that it’s hard to run any floral operation. Florists are truly artists who use blossoms to express emotion instead of Farrow & Ball paints. Many are not as interested in the business side with its endless flow charts, payrolls, shipments of flowers etc. etc. Creativity is often in abundance. Business savvy not as much. 

What distinguishes Winston Florists is the team behind it.  Hailing from Massachusetts, David and Ted are a formidable team. Not only were their grandfather and father in the business, but their fusion of talents really bode well for future growth. 

Ted Winston can dissect numbers like a surgeon and David is known for his creative flair. They both share the title of CEO, so unlike some floral family operations, their skills complement each other and the company doesn’t run as much risk of turf wars.

These brotherly duo operate in the same way that another Massachusetts-born team does at Blue Hill at Stone Barns – where David Barber manages business and Dan Barber is the star chef. 

There are many ingredients that make a successful business. Winston Flowers has a reputation for being collaborative. Therefore for Olivier Guigni and his team, they will be well-respected within what is becoming a burgeoning empire as a star brand in its expanding floral family.  

As David Winston said, “L’Olivier and Winston Flowers share an abiding passion for innovative design, unrivaled service, and a deep commitment to our clients. I’ve always respected and admired Olivier’s design work and look forward to our two teams providing beautiful, inspiring floral services together.”  – Jill Brooke

Photo Credits: Winston Flowers

Jill Brooke is a former CNN correspondent and editor-in-chief of Avenue and Travel Savvy magazine.  She is an author and the editorial director of FPD.