Guccio Gucci: Founder Of Gucci And Its Complicated History

By Karen Harris
Guccio Gucci c. 1940. (Unknown author/Wikimedia Commons)

His name is now synonymous with style, luxury, and haute couture, but what do you know about Guccio Gucci, the man behind the famous Gucci fashion brand that's the subject of a star-studded 2021 movie?

Bellhop Turned Businessman

Guccio Gucci was born in Florence, Italy on March 26, 1881. As the son of an Italian merchant, he grew up influenced by the art and history of Florence as well as the commerce of this northern manufacturing center. In 1898, he moved to London and landed his first job at the Savoy Hotel, the pinnacle of luxury accommodations at the time. As a bellhop, dishwasher, waiter, and elevator attendant to the likes of Frank Sinatra, Winston Churchill, and Claude Monet, Gucci used his various jobs at the Savoy as a lesson in style. He observed how the wealthy elite behaved, their mannerisms, and their choice of clothing and accessories. He also engaged guests in conversation, building a network of contacts crucial to his future business success.