Since launching chic lifestyle boutique Bungalow 8 next to her childhood home in Mumbai, Maithili Ahluwaila has successfully launched two in-house labels and has built a steady following of patrons, which has included the likes of Vivienne Westwood , Suzy Menkes and Madonna.
A graduate of Swarthmore College in Pennsylvania, where she obtained a degree in economics and sociology in 2000, and the London School of Economics, Ahluwalia initially pursued a career in consulting. She secured a job in New York with Easton’s, a boutique marketing and business development firm.
After returning to India in 2003, Ahluwalia set up Bungalow 8 with the help of family and friends. Initially launched as an interiors store, a chance encounter in Paris with Mathieu Gugumus Leguillon, a former group designer at Lanvin and Saint Laurent , led to Ahluwalia overseeing the launch of her first in-house fashion line “Bungalow.” The first collection for was released in 2009 with a menswear range released in early 2011.
Now housed in a majestic colonial building located in the heart of Mumbai's cultural centre Colaba, Bungalow 8 provides a unique shopping experience set out over three floors filled with modern and contemporary Indian offerings in home furnishings, antiques and artisanal jewellery. In 2006, Bungalow 8 expanded into a 2500 sq. ft retail space at 1, Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai.
Ahluwalia announced that Bungalow 8 is closing down in April 2019, citing the challenges of balancing retail experience with the immediacy of social media.