GIORGIO ARMANI’S HONOR: Giorgio Armani has been named the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) Special Ambassador for Responsible Tourism.
In a statement, UNWTO recognized Armani as “a global reference for his timeless designs and creativity as well as for his profound commitment to social responsibility and respect for the environment. His fashion brand is inspired by the concept of substance and the conviction that sustainability means creating a system capable of enduring through time, with respect for all the resources and the awareness that the future of generations to come depends on the choices of today.”
“I am genuinely pleased to have been honored in this way by an organisation that believes that people should be encouraged to see the beauty of the globe in a respectful and responsible manner,” said Armani. “It has been a sense of responsibility for our community that has helped my country through this terrible pandemic and this too is what has driven me to play my small part in helping those engaged in the fight against the virus, and the fight against the economic challenges it has posed. A belief in community – the global community – and an appreciation of the humanity we all share are what will help us build a better future for ourselves and the generations to come, through being mindful of the important things in life, like the preciousness of the environment and our duty to protect it.”
The Ambassadorship was revealed in the wake of the visit of the UNWTO Secretary-General, Zurab Pololikashvili, to Italy, his first mission abroad after the COVID19 lockdown and to the country that was the first to be severely struck by the pandemic in Europe, and that is grappling with the effects it continues to have on tourism.
The UNWTO emphasized Armani’s prompt response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
As reported, the Armani Group in March converted all its four Italian production sites to produce single-use medical overalls for the individual protection of health-care providers fighting the coronavirus.
After pledging to donate 1.25 million euros to Italy’s Civil Protection and a range of Italian hospitals and institutions in the country, including the Luigi Sacco, San Raffaele and the Istituto dei Tumori in Milan and Rome’s Istituto Lazzaro Spallanzani, the designer also decided to contribute to support the hospitals of Bergamo and Piacenza, both badly hit by the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as the Versilia hospital in Tuscany, bringing the total of his donations to 2 million euros.
In March, he also took a full-page ad in more than 60 newspapers in Italy, writing a letter to all of the health-care providers strenuously fighting the coronavirus outbreak and musing on his own desire as a young man to become a doctor.
Armani was quick to understand the effects of COVID-19 and decided to show his fall 2020 collection behind closed doors in February.
Pololikashvili also “thanked the designer for preserving jobs throughout the difficult times of the COVID-19 pandemic.”
Five years ago, Armani was also named special ambassador of Expo Milano 2015, opening the Universal Exhibition with a special event.