One of the great joys of my career has been to travel the world and see what people are wearing, eating and designing around the world. For the Perfect Provenance, we try to look at the 'whole picture', meeting with designers, attending shows and talking to experts. Equally important, is walking the streets, going into shops, talking to sales people in other markets and understanding how people live.
Trends, as we all know come and go, but finding designs and products that you will cherish over the long haul is one of the hallmarks of our Perfect lifestyle. This year, I have traveled to a variety of places including: Copenhagen, London, Milan, San Francisco, Napa Valley, San Francisco, Bogota, and Paris, and met with friends who work in PR, fashion journalism and architecture. I visit innovative and creative shops and restaurants in all of these markets and try to bring a little piece of each place back to our shop and restaurant. Luxury, is not defined by price of course, true luxury is defined by quality of life, time spent with friends and family, an incredible culinary experience, and cherished memories. Here are just a few highlights of what I have seen:
-- Copenhagen -- within the past few years, Copenhagen has become the cool new kid on the block. With it's innovative approach to the environment, restaurants and design, it is big enough to be a city, but small enough to be a 'village' as one resident told me. Why? With it's army of bike riders, everything feels within reach. My oldest son Zack and I spent a beautiful weekend this summer biking along the canals, stopping at delicious outdoor food markets or halls and taking in the history. Food markets located throughout the city feature amazing food from the classic to innovative and are the hot trend in the city. Visit Tivoli Hall or Bridge Street Market (perfect stop on a bike ride) -- this is the good life, healthy, delicious and fun. www,tivoligardens.com
-- Napa Valley -- this is my home turf so I don't usually stay in hotels but my last two visits have included a stay at the Hotel Yountville, a charming hotel at the beginning of Yountville. It is so peaceful there, enjoy a glass of wine and a cheese and charcuterie plate by the fire, this is bliss. Take a two minute walk down the street and eat at Thomas Keller's Ad Hoc - one prix fixe meal offered per night for all. Our last visit had their famous fried chicken and I can still smell it's savory scent. Heaven. www.hotelyountville.com
-- Paris -- Of course, Paris has some of the most incredible five star hotels and restaurants on the planet, but the real secret is that the amount of amazing four star hotels is equal to none. When I go for work, I stay at a new, charming hotel each time, tucked in an arrondissement (neighborhood) that when I leave makes me feel like a local. Last week, we stayed in the Marias which is bustling with boutiques, restaurants and history. Our hotel 's facade -- Hotel du Petit Moulin -- is housed in the first boulangerie of all of Paris, and where Victor Hugo bought his bread everyday. Each room is designed by Christian LaCroix. Four stars don't usually have a restaurant but no worries, they have a wonderful breakfast and there are restaurants on every corner. At night, put on your chicest outfit and have a cocktail or champagne at the Hotel Le Meurice or Hotel Crillon (just recently renonvated and reopened) -- j'adore. You will step back in time where elegance and hospitality co-exist. Favorite restaurant this trip -- Les Foodies -- in the Marais, innovative, delicious and well, perfect. www.hotelpetitmoulinparis.com/en/
-- Milan -- Milan is no longer the ugly stepsister to every other city in Italy Food, fashion and design are all around you. I went to Design Week this year and never have I seen a city work together to host events and exhibits like this. Sporting events such as the Olympics or Super Bowl have been doing this for years, but to see it with design was thrilling. The Grand Hotel (5 star) is right in the shopping 'triangle' where three famous streets intersect and there is shopping and eating all around. Great shopping? Corso Como 10 -- the original concept store & restaurant and Tea Rose -- love both. Biggest trend in Italy right now, flowers, flowers, flowers. Floral crowns, flowers sold in fashion stores, fiori everywhere. www.grandhoteletdemilan.it/en/
London -- Last but not least, we were visiting during a heat wave for London and the mood was gleeful. I went with my oldest son Zack and we stayed in a wonderful little hotel Hazlitt's Hotel in Soho. Like Paris, London has wonderful four star hotels that offer delicious breakfast and charming neighborhood locations. Three townhouses joined together were owned by author Hazlitt and the literary tradition continues today, with first editions in the library signed by authors who frequent the hotel including JK Rowling. Enjoy a Pimm's or glass of wine at the honesty bar in the library and then go to dinner in one of the hottest areas in London. Two of our fav activities this trip -- a tour of Parliament and a speed boat ride on the Thames that gave an incredible history on the city of London and was so much fun. Thames Rockets was the boat company and I highly recommend. www.hazlittshotel.com/
That's it for now, hope you are having a good back to school and enjoyed your summer. We hope to see you soon.
Best, lisa lori