A Magazine, Issue 97

Page 1

People/Style/Culture/Art

The Young and the Restless: Paola Sakr, Hrag Jeghalian, Yassmin Saleh and Maher Harb Dining in White. A Landmark by David Adjaye. Dreaming in Three European Capitals

no.97 Feb/Mar/Apr '19 LL10,000














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97 No.

February/March/April 2019

Inside

The Fresh Issue

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FRONT / 40 Who’s Who / 42 Editor’s Letter The inspiration behind this issue / 44

Contributors A brief selection / 50 Yes We Can Lebanon’s generation next / 64 In Focus

What’s on this season / 86 Objects of Desire Spring must-haves / 94 Conventional

Cool Zegna’s Alessandro Sartori and his vision for the brand / 102 In the Studio with

Sybil Layous / 108 Jewelry for a New Lifestyle The latest from Tabbah / FASHION /

110 Fresh as a Fable Two playful fashion looks / 114 To Market, to Market Accessories to fill you with joy / 128 Making a Splash Spring’s colorful looks / 138 The Mirror Has

Two Faces Romantic fashion glimpsed twice / FEATURES / 154 Spirit of a City Unique

hotels in Amsterdam, Brussels and Paris / 166 Telling an Untold Story A landmark museum by Sir David Adjaye / 174 Promise of a New Day Some of spring’s most



February/March/April 2019

delightful fashion trends / 182 Handmade Wonders Bespoke jewelry from Buccellati

/ 186 Subject In Conversation with Paola Sakr / 188 Design in Bloom Colin Finnegan talks about his latest projects / 194 Roaring in Red The Ferrari Portofino in grand

style / PLAYGROUND / 214 Where We’re Eating / 218 On Food Have you attended a

Dîner en Blanc? / 220 On Wellness Taking the cure / 222 Where We’re Detoxing / 226

Where We’re Staying / 230 48 Hours in Georgetown Washington, DC’s most dynamic neighborhood / 234 On Drink Healthy shakes are all the rage / 236 Where We’re

Drinking / THE END / 240 The Last Page Teens on the small screen

People/Style/Culture/Art

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The Young and the Restless: Paola Sakr, Hrag Jeghalian, Yassmin Saleh and Maher Harb Dining in White. A Landmark by David Adjaye. Dreaming in Three European Capitals

no.97 Feb/Mar/Apr '19 LL10,000

On the Cover Fierce like fire, here’s A Mag’s freshest issue to date. Our cover girl Elodie wears a Dsquared2 shirt and vintage blazer. Shot in Paris by Fiona Torre / Styling by Lauren Malpas



People/Style/Culture/Art Publisher Tony Salamé Group TSG SAL

Editor-in-chief Marwan Naaman

Creative director Mélanie Dagher

Senior art and production director Maria Maalouf

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Copy editor Stephanie d’Arc Taylor

Coordinating editor Sophie Nahas

Feature photographers

Contributing writers

Carl Halal

Senior photo editor Fadi Maalouf

In-house fashion photographer Raya Farhat Salma Abdelnour

Tracy Lynn Chemaly Tala Habbal

Karim Hussain Niku Kasmai

Michelle Merheb

Fashion photographers Mohamad Abdouni Cristina Coral Bachar Srour Fiona Torre

Marco Pinarelli Stylists

Amelianna Loiacono Lauren Malpas Charles Nicola

Graphic design intern Marion Garnier

Editorial intern Alessandra Ziade Advertising director Melhem Moussallem Advertising manager Rawan Mneimne

Senior marketing coordinators Noor Mereby, Magaly Mosleh Printing Dots: The Art of Printing

Responsible director Nasser Bitar

Aïshti by the Sea, Beirut, Lebanon tel. 961.4.717.716, aishti.com, aishtiblog.com



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Growing Younger Spring is just around the corner, and with it comes a season of renewal, of hope, of endless possibilities. This Fresh issue of A Mag celebrates everything that’s youthful, new, vibrant and dynamic, honing on Lebanon’s young entrepreneurs, creators and tastemakers, while celebrating innovative trends in both Lebanon and abroad. Check out Paola Sakr’s conceptual designs, Sybil Layous’ lush floral installations and David Adjaye’s groundbreaking architecture. Stay at lovely hotels in Paris, Amsterdam and Brussels, and attend an exclusive al fresco dinner where all guests are dressed in nothing but white. And, of course, plunge head first into the spring season’s fresh, fabulous, fantastic fashion trends. Where once there was a dream, suddenly comes a bright reality. Marwan Naaman @marwannaaman


Gate Bags, 2019

loewe.com Aïshti by the Sea, Antelias


Contributors

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Charles Nicola Charles Nicola is a fashion designer and part-time stylist who was born and raised in California but is of Lebanese descent. He’s been based in Beirut for the past seven years, working as the senior designer at Elie Saab. He’s also the visual consultant for Cold Cuts magazine, and has worked as a stylist for brands and publications both locally and internationally. He styled the “Roaring in Red” Ferrari editorial shoot, beginning on page 194.

Salma Abdelnour Salma Abdelnour is a writer and editor based in New York City. Her writing on food, travel, lifestyle and other topics has appeared everywhere from Culture Trip to BravoTV.com, Food & Wine, The New York Times and Forbes, and her articles have been anthologized in multiple editions of The Best Food Writing. She is currently working with a variety of clients to ghostwrite and edit their autobiographies and op-eds. She’s the author of her own memoir, Jasmine and Fire: A Bittersweet Year in Beirut (Broadway Books/Random House). When she’s not traveling or on deadline, her favorite sport is walking around and looking for the perfect place to sit for a while, read and drink endless cups of coffee (yes, that’s a sport). She writes about the ultra-popular Dîner en Blanc in “Good Things Come To Those Who White,” on page 218.

Cristina Coral Cristina Coral is an award-winning photographer based in Italy and specialized in creative and fine art photography. She loves to explore the complex relationship between subject and environment and has collaborated with a variety of magazines and brands. Her work has been exhibited at Galleria Carla Sozzani in Milan, Somerset House London, Leica Gallery in Milan, Santa Maria della Scala in Siena and Base Milan for the PhotoVogue Festival 2016. She’s been published and featured in several magazines, including Vogue.it, Metal, Musée Magazine, Huffington Post, L’Oeil, Grey, Einaudi, Plastik, Elle Decor, GUP, Lomography and WSI. In this issue, she shot “The Mirror Has Two Faces,” beginning on page 128.

Marion Garnier Born in Reims, France, Marion Garnier moved to Lebanon at a young age, where she lived for a decade. In Lebanon, she discovered the beauty of a cosmopolitan and multicultural lifestyle, a place where people are trilingual and a wisdom she could not have achieved anywhere else. Passionate about art, she decided to study graphic design and major in communication and visual arts. She’s currently interning at A Mag, contributing to various projects that have further increased her thirst for knowledge and love of art.


For online shopping visit nadag.com

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YES WE CAN Photography Marco Pinarelli

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A new generation of Lebanese entrepreneurs are turning their dreams into reality. With fresh, dynamic ideas, and in fields that range from health and well-being to fashion and design, these newcomers are leaving their mark on present-day Lebanon and reinventing the country’s future.


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VANESSA ZUABI AND LARA NOUJAIM ENTREPRENEURS

Vanessa Zuabi and Lara Noujaim teamed up to found Mint Basil Market, an online shopping platform that sells healthy and organic food as well as beauty, bath and body products. Named one of the top women in tech in the MENA region, Noujaim was formerly director of marketing at Gamecooks, a Lebanese VR and gaming company. She specializes in digital marketing and previously worked for the likes of Yahoo and Google in Silicon Valley. Zuabi spent nine years in Washington, DC, where she specialized in strategic partnership and business development. She previously worked and consulted for the Aspen Institute, the Clinton Global Initiative and HSBC Bank. The two young women are continuously inspired by their budding venture: “We get happy and appreciative messages, calls and emails from customers who have been unable to access products that fit their health needs, and they are able to find what they need through Mint Basil Market.” What’s the most challenging thing about your work? Trying to keep pace with the demand for our products. We’re excited at how Mint Basil Market is steadily growing. What’s the freshest thing you ever created? We’ve built an amazing community. Our customers and partners are the heart and soul of our business, and it’s because of them that we’ve continued to grow and expand. If you could do only one thing for the rest of your life what would it be and why?

VZ: I think I’ll continue to put my heart, soul and passion into health and wellness since it’s always been integral to my lifestyle. Mint Basil Market is one manifestation of this passion. LN: I’ve always been passionate about Lebanon – if I could do only one thing for the rest of my life, it would be to seek out as many interesting stories about my country as possible and to share them with the rest of the world. Which travel destination would you like to visit and never have before? VZ: Vietnam and Cambodia to visit Buddhist temples and monasteries. LN: Nazareth and Jerusalem, because of their deep history and importance in religion. Which is your favorite spot in Lebanon? VZ: Hamra – it’s chaotic but feels like home. LN: Beit Mery – my favorite place to be after dealing with the craziness of Beirut all day. If you could live anywhere outside Lebanon, where would it be? VZ: California since it’s where I grew up. LN: Spain – I love people’s energy there. Which living person do you admire most and why? VZ: My parents because they led by example and taught their four daughters to be strong and resilient in the process. LN: My mother because she’s one hell of a strong woman. Describe yourself in just one word. VZ: Resilient. LN: Energetic.


HRAG JEGHALIAN ENTREPRENEUR

With health and fitness always foremost in his mind, Hrag Jeghalian launched Glow in 2018. Glow makes fresh, delicious and healthy detox juices at both of its locations in ABC Dbayeh and Beirut Souks. Prior to setting up his own venture, Jeghalian earned a Bachelor’s degree in nutrition from the Lebanese American University and a Master’s in management from the University of Leeds in the United Kingdom. His favorite Glow drink? The Anti Aging Goodness. “It’s by far the greatest thing I’ve created,” he says.

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What’s the most challenging thing about your work? To build a team and not an organization. What inspires you most? The fact that we simply have one life to live. If you could do only one thing for the rest of your life what would it be and why? Save children who are suffering from cancer, because they are the most innocent. Which travel destination would you like to visit and never have before? Bora Bora. Which is your favorite spot in Lebanon? Batroun, it’s got the happiest beaches. If you could live anywhere outside Lebanon, where would it be? Probably Hawaii, I could live by the sea forever. Which living person do you admire most and why? My parents, for supporting me in achieving my goals and sacrificing everything for me. Describe yourself in just one word. Motivated.


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MAHER HARB WINEMAKER

Sept winery, one of Lebanon’s youngest wineries, comes courtesy of Maher Harb. The young man launched his winery in 2016, in Nehla in the Batroun region, on land he inherited from his father, who perished during Lebanon’s Civil War. Harb had been living in Paris and working as a business consultant, and during his time off he visited French vineyards. That’s when he realized he wanted to become a winemaker. So he left France, returned to his Lebanese homeland and set up his winery, adhering to a biodynamic and organic process. “Nature has always been my main inspiration, especially now with the winemaking,” he says. “I am amazed by the beauty and energy of nature.” What’s the most challenging thing about your work? I am a one-man show in my work. In the same day I am a winemaker at the winery and a salesman in the market selling my wines. Every day is a challenge. That’s what makes my work exciting. What’s the freshest thing you ever created? What’s fresher than a dream when you wake up? I woke up one day and made my dream come true. I created Sept. If you could do only one thing for the rest of your life what would it be and why? I am doing exactly the only thing I ever wanted to do. Make wine, and keep doing it. Which travel destination would you like to visit and never have before? Oh, the list is big even though I traveled to so many places. Galapagos Islands is a destination I dream about. Which is your favorite spot in Lebanon? My vineyard in my small village Nehla, situated at 950 meters above the sea in the Batroun region. This place is where all my dreams and inspiration came from and still is. It is the place where I feel connected to everything I love and believe in. If you could live anywhere outside Lebanon, where would it be? I would live in Tuscany. Which living person do you admire most and why? My beautiful mother. She is the strongest and sweetest person I have ever known. Describe yourself in just one word. Warrior.

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YASSMIN SALEH FASHION DESIGNER

Yassmin Saleh’s singular designs capture intangibles – social and psychological references – and transform them into fashion. The young woman introduced her first collection at Lebanon’s Starch Foundation in 2018, after earning a degree in fashion design from the Lebanese American University and working at Elie Saab in both Paris and Beirut. Her minimalistic fashion showcases expert craftsmanship, handmade textiles and sleek tailoring. If she could do only one thing for the rest of her life, Saleh says she would travel the world “to learn traditional craftsmanship techniques and experience culinary heaven.”

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What’s the most challenging thing about your work? At this stage, as an emerging designer, the most challenging part of my work is managing the brand without a full team. Having to accomplish the design and business aspect is wonderful, but there aren’t enough hours in a day. Thankfully, I have my sister Farah who will soon be running the brand with me. What’s the freshest thing you ever created? It would definitely be the signature pieces of the brand: the Tattoo Series. For each collection, a print is designed and digitally printed on a series of seethrough pieces, giving the illusion of a body full of tattoos. Just as every tattoo tells a story, the tattoo series carries hidden messages regarding social views and commentaries. What inspires you most? The brand is a means for me to communicate with the world. My inspiration comes from expressionist art, social topics and, most importantly, it dives into the self and the breathtaking yet conflicting aspect that makes one individual: the unconscious. Which travel destination would you like to visit and never have before? Japan: A full month of eating gyoza, learning the traditional craft and seeing the hidden gems. Which is your favorite spot in Lebanon? Anywhere by the sea. Sporting Club is my go-to spot. If you could live anywhere outside Lebanon, where would it be? If I could live anywhere outside Lebanon it would be Italy for both business and pleasure. Which living person do you admire most and why? I admire Martin Margiela, not only for his iconoclastic approach to luxury fashion but also for his way of maintaining a low profile and staying true to his identity. Describe yourself in just one word. Determined.


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ALEXANDRA HAKIM JEWELRY DESIGNER

British-Lebanese designer Alexandra Hakim manipulates materials through innovative techniques to create sustainable, organic jewelry. She collects various objects and textures that typically go to waste and turns them into contemporary handmade jewelry pieces. She launched her brand in Beirut shortly after earning degrees from both Central Saint Martins in London and the Rhode Island School of Design. If she could live anywhere besides Lebanon, Hakim says she would choose Amsterdam. “It’s a real hub for makers and contemporary thinkers,” she says, “a city known for its progressive mindset.” What’s the most challenging thing about your work? Being a contemporary jewelry designer and maker in Beirut. We need more studios with modern equipment accessible to young makers. What’s the freshest thing you ever created? I make jewelry with a futuristic twist for Emulate, a biotech startup in Boston that is pioneering Organs-on-Chips technology in which a small transparent chip – which I use to inspire my jewelry – contains tiny hollow channels lined with tens of thousands of living human cells. This technology opens up a new way to predict precisely how an individual may respond to medicine, chemicals and food, and is an alternative to animal testing. I’ve designed a collection that melds art and science to make the Organs-on-Chip designs wearable, bringing the idea of technology and health to the person who carries it. What inspires you most? The idea of creating something new. Which travel destination would you like to visit and never have before? I learned Japanese at school and still haven’t been to Japan. I’ve always been intrigued by the culture, the art and, most importantly, the food. I’d love to learn woodblock printing there. Which is your favorite spot in Lebanon? I don’t have one in particular. For now, I just enjoy the fact that I’m here. Which living person do you admire most and why? My 95-year-old grandfather is undoubtedly the person I admire most. He is the most hard-working, humble and honest man I have ever met. He still looks forward to going to work every morning. I believe that he has truly understood the value of life and treasures every moment of it. His work ethic as well as his integrity inspire me to do my best every day. Describe yourself in just one word. Direct.

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DANYA AHMED DESIGNER

Prior to launching Gray Gardens Plant Studio in 2015, Danya Ahmed earned a Bachelor’s degree in fine arts and sculpture and a Masters’ degree in fibers and textiles, both from the United States. She then worked in landscape architecture in New York and later as creative director at Bokja for two years upon her return to Lebanon. Through Gray Gardens, she creates pots that are hand sculpted from concrete and then filled with greenery, a reflection perhaps of the city of Beirut, which is hard and gritty but also soft and sensual all at once. The most challenging thing about Ahmed’s work? “Trying to be organized,” she says. What’s the freshest thing you ever created? Gray Gardens. It’s a platform for me to keep creating. What inspires you most? Making and experimenting. If you could do only one thing for the rest of your life what would it be and why? I think tending to a piece of land could offer enough variety in something constant. You can build, plant, harvest and experience the seasons. Which travel destination would you like to visit and never have before? Socotra (an island in the northwest Indian Ocean). Which is your favorite spot in Lebanon? I’m in love with the mountains here. If you could live anywhere outside Lebanon, where would it be? Maybe Italy comes to mind. Which living person do you admire most and why? I should probably have an answer to this question. Describe yourself in just one word. Romantic.

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In Focus Bagging Alexander_____ Alexander McQueen has two bags to covet this season. The Jeweled Satchel comes in a new smaller version, with a half-chain leather strap and the skull rings that often adorn the label’s evening clutches. Then there’s the Bucket Bag, inspired by treasure chests, heraldic crests and origami folding techniques, and offered either in a reduced size or as a cross body camera bag. Available at Aïshti Downtown and Aïshti by the Sea

Alexander McQueen

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AÏSHTI BY THE SEA, AÏSHTI DOWNTOWN, AÏSHTI VERDUN

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In Focus What to Wear_____ Lebanese designer Lara Khoury’s latest ready-to-wear collection, LK Eudemonia, takes the pursuit of happiness as its central theme. The spring 2019 collection celebrates individuality, freedom of expression and life lived to the fullest through joyful pieces like flowing dresses – in brilliant shades of red and pastel shades of pink – loose-fitting shirts and billowy short skirts. A perfect way to usher in Lebanon’s congenial spring and summer seasons. larakhoury.com

Blu Fiefer, Bulgari. Ferrari, Lara Khoury

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Prelude to Blu_____ Mexican-Lebanese hip-hop artist Blu Fiefer just released her new EP, The Prelude. Featuring six tracks – including the first single “Girl’s Gotta Eat” – the EP is produced by Jana Saleh and Blu Fiefer herself. “Girl’s Gotta Eat” incorporates Spanish, Arabic and English, as it deals with women’s empowerment, most notably in the video, which features women of all shapes, colors and sizes. The music, on this track and others, is an upbeat, contrasting mix of alternative hip-hop and classical tunes. Blu Fiefer says that she named her EP The Prelude because it’s an opening act, an introduction, to her music and herself. “It’s an appetizer to me,” she says. “It’s me expressing myself and talking about things people don’t talk about, like empowerment and inequality.” The most exciting musical artist to hit the Lebanese airwaves. @blufiefer

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Electric Love_____ To celebrate love on Valentine’s Day and all year long, Bulgari introduces the Electro Love Collection, an accessories capsule inspired by the Italian brand’s famed Serpenti design. Created to incite passion and love at first sight, the Electro Love bags – available in red or blue calf leather – are adorned with a detachable pierced heart charm. The collection also includes mini wallets and credit card holders, in the same blue and red colors. Available the Bulgari boutique in Downtown Beirut.

Escape to Portofino_____ Sports car lovers take note: the Ferrari Portofino is the latest V8 GT for you to desire. Inspired by the lovely Italian town of Portofino, the car features a retractable hard top, roomy trunk and spacious cockpit, with two rear seats for additional passengers. The retractable hard top is a particularly appealing feature – it can be opened or closed in 14 seconds and allows the vehicle to easily transform from a stylish Berlinetta Coupe into a sleek drop-top. An unbeatable combination of design, performance and technology. ferrari.com


In Focus

Stylish Under the Sun_____ American label Jaline Resort has released a dreamy new collection connecting art with nature. Free-flowing textiles, sunset colors and ocean blues blend together to produce playful and effortless looks inspired by blissful vacation destinations. Choose from caftans, wrap dresses, bathing suits and loose-fitting, flowing gowns: each piece is more mythical than the next. Available at Aïshti Downtown and Aïshti by the Sea

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Dutch Paradise _____ Visiting Keukenhof is a once-in-alifetime experience. Set in Lisse, in South Holland, the 32-hectare park contains 7 million flower bulbs, including 800 varieties of tulips. The best time to head to the park is during the two-month Keukenhof Spring and Flower Festival, an annual event that takes place when the brilliantly colored flowers are in full bloom. This year’s theme, Flower Power, is an ode the 1970s, with art, events and shows inspired by hippies, peace and love. It’s a true floral fantasy. March 21-May 19, keukenhof.nl/en

Double the Fun_____ La DoubleJ’s 2019 resort collection celebrates the Italian label’s maximalist tendencies. As always, La DoubleJ’s gowns dazzle with eye-popping vintage prints, and this time around fabrics include lusciously soft cottons, mindblowing Italian silks and sensuously slippery Sablé. There are also knitwear pieces and a swimwear collection in tightly woven Lake Como-produced Lycra – so you can start stocking up on bespoke summer outfits! Available at Aïshti Downtown and Aïshti by the Sea

Jimmy Choo, George Hakim, Keukenhof, La DoubleJ

Bejeweled Glory_____ Lebanese jeweler George Hakim has added a number of stunning pieces to its venerable collection, including a trio of rings in white or pink gold adorned with a mix of white and black diamonds, rubies, sapphires and emeralds. Another delectable piece is a white and pink gold bracelet shimmering with glorious diamonds, sapphires and emeralds. All pieces were launched last November at the luxurious Park Lane Hotel in Hong Kong. georgehakim.com


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Kaia Does Jimmy Choo_____ Cindy Crawford’s daughter, Kaia Gerber, is the new face for Jimmy Choo’s spring/summer 2019 campaign. Steven Meisel photographed the 17-yearold in various Jimmy Choo looks, including a branded T-shirt and hooded sweatshirt, with the new Helia bag and Raine sneakers. “To me, Jimmy Choo represents strength and power,” says Gerber. “I am so grateful to be a part of the youthful spirit of the brand, and I think the confidence they want women to feel really shows through in the collection.”


In Focus

Chloé with a C_____ Natacha Ramsay-Levi’s spring/summer 2019 collection for Chloé packs a powerful punch of hippie modernism. In addition to clothes that speak of a Mediterranean journey and earthly delights, the collection includes the new Chloé C bag, which comes in squared and utility shapes crafted in embossed patchworks and neon degradé. Available at the Chloé boutique in the Beirut Souks and Aïshti by the Sea

A Night in Eden_____ Jamaica-born artist Ebony G. Patterson takes over an entire space at the Pérez Art Museum in Miami, transforming it into a wondrous night garden, complete with drawings, tapestries, videos, sculptures and installations that involve surfaces layered with flowers, glitter, lace and beads. Through her magnificent work, Patterson investigates various forms of embellishment as they relate to youth culture in disenfranchised communities. A definite Miami museum highlight. Until May 5, pamm.org

Chloé, Oriol Tarridas/PAMM

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In Focus

Cool Comfort_____ Stella McCartney’s spring/summer 2019 collection elevates comfort clothes into high fashion territory. Evening gowns are as easily wearable as nighties, while pantsuits become as soft and pliable as tracksuits. Collection standouts include the strapless blue Giselle mini dress, made with a sustainable viscose blend and featuring fringe detailing, and the white striped Audrina shirt dress, with a buttonup front and detachable belt. Both dresses are comfortable and cool, typically Stella McCartney. Available at the Stella McCartney boutique in the Beirut Souks and Aïshti by the Sea

In Martin We Trust________ A vibrant new joint in Beirut’s Mar Mikhael neighborhood, Martin serves up tapas and burgers in a joyful setting. Favorite tapas here include cheesy balls, mini beef tacos and Martin’s special fries served with jalapeño and cheddar cheese, while burger options range from a traditional cheeseburger to a grilled chicken burger and quinoa veggie burger. Under neon signs that read “In burgers we trust” and “In tapas we trust,” you can sip on Martin’s signature beetroot martini while watching Beirut’s night owls revel until dawn. facebook.com/martincantinalb

Raya Farhat, Stella McCartmey, Phillips Collection.Robert Lautman

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A Home for Art_____ Next time you’re in Washington, DC, be sure to visit The Phillips Collection. Founded by Duncan and Marjorie Phillips in 1921 and located in the Dupont Circle neighborhood, the museum boasts a fascinating collection of over 4,000 artworks, ranging from French impressionist and American modernist pieces to contemporary works. Collection highlights include August Renoir’s breathtaking “Luncheon of the Boating Party,” Edward Hopper’s chilling “Sunday” and “Asheville” by Willem de Kooning. The Phillips Collection also holds notable photographic works by the likes of Berenice Abbott and Anselm Kiefer. Check out the Rothko Room, in which four paintings by abstract expressionist Mark Rothko hang around a single bench. The Phillips’ Rothko Room is the only existing installation of Rothko paintings designed in collaboration with the artist himself. phillipscollection.org



In Focus Tales of Textiles_____ Italy’s incredible textiles take center stage at the Wolfsonian-FIU museum in Miami Beach. “Made in Italy: MITA Textile Design 1926-1976,” organized in cooperation with the Wolfsoniana-Palazzo Ducale Fondazione per la Cultura in Genoa and the Consulate General of Italy in Miami, shines the spotlight on MITA, the company that created mid-century carpets inspired by Modernist aesthetic trends while employing up-todate production techniques. After World War II, MITA expanded production to include tapestries and fabrics with both abstract and figurative patterns. This seminal show features striking carpets, tapestries, scarves and printed fabrics by the likes of Gio Ponti, Enrico Paulucci, Gio Pomodoro, Ettore Sottsass, Jr. and many more. Until April 28, wolfsonian.org

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Loewe, Riccardo Manzi/MITA Archive of MA Ponis, Zerocalcare

Spring When It’s Smooth_____ Loewe takes low-key elegance to a whole new level this spring. Some of the Spanish label’s most memorable looks include a khaki green asymmetric skirt paired with a white Loewe T-shirt, beige calf motifs mules and tan smooth calf Gate top handle bag. Que viva España! Available at Aïshti Downtown and Aïshti by the Sea


Coolest Comics_____ Rome’s MAXXI Museum is hosting a dazzling exhibit of Zerocalcare’s work. Born in Arezzo and raised in both France and Rome, the 35-year-old Italian cartoonist has been working as an illustrator since 2001, for such publications as Liberazione and La Repubblica XL. This exhibit – Zerocalcare’s first-ever solo show – includes color illustrations and strips from the artist’s blog, his illustrations, concert posters and record covers associated with the world of punk, his explosive political cartoons and much more. A must for art and cartoon lovers alike. Until March 10, maxxi.art

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In Focus

Totally Teddy_____ Moschino introduces six new styles of footwear to express the distinctive characteristics of the brand in different ways – always with the signature touch of irony that defines Jeremy Scott’s work for the brand. Highlights from spring/summer 2019 include the Teddy Shoes – in the lace-up version or knit sock one with the Moschino logo – sporting the rubber bottom that transforms the teddy bear shape into an oversized 3D rubber sole. A casual way to step out in style. Available at Aïshti Downtown and Aïshti by the Sea

Le Jazz Hot_____ This year, the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival celebrates its 50th anniversary with a look back at the people, places and events that have made the annual happening such a great success. Visitors can view footage from the first-ever jazz festival plus images of festival favorites across the decades. The 2019 all-star lineup includes The Rolling Stones, Santana, Gladys Knight, Bonnie Raitt, Tom Jones, Aaron Neville and Katy Perry, among dozens more. Now you’ve got a reason to take that trip to the Big Easy. April 25-28 and May 2-5, nojazzfest.com

Moschino, Nada G, New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival

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Seduced by the Light_____ Lebanon-based jeweler Nada G has partnered with Beirut’s venerable Sursock Museum to launch a capsule collection inspired by the museum’s rose window traceries and the fanlight windows, which in turn were based on the lotus flower. Named Power of Light, the collection includes earrings, rings, chokers, cuffs and bracelets in 18-carat yellow, white or pink gold. The glorious pieces are available at the Nada G boutique and atelier, at select points of sale across Lebanon and at the Sursock Museum. nadag.com


Lebanon: Aïshti Downtown Beirut, Aïshti By the Sea Antelias, Aïshti Verdun

dvf.com


In Focus

Beauty at Your Feet_____ Lebanon’s prime tile-maker BlattChaya has launched a new Prêt à Poser collection, consisting of ready-to-use cement tiles in pre-selected patterns and colors. Rather than ordering custom tiles, clients can now just head to the BlattChaya factory in Dekwaneh and pick up their favored patterns for immediate use. In addition to the main tile collection, BlattChaya also launched a Prêt à Poser Design Edition, in collaboration with some of Lebanon’s most well-known creators. The first Design Edition includes tiles by Nada Debs, Carlo Massoud and Stephanie Moussallem, among others. A contemporary reinvention of Lebanon’s beloved traditional tiles. blattchaya.com

Resplendent Rubies _____ Diamonds and rubies come together in a most miraculous fashion for one of Mouawad’s newest collections. The Lebanese jeweler recently introduced a range of magnificent necklaces, bracelets, rings and earrings shining with the exceptional allure of rubies. Often referred to as “the stone of divine creativity,” the gloriously red ruby exudes confidence, power and nobility – as does every single piece of Mouawad’s latest jewelry collection. mouawad.com

BlattChaya, Carl Halal, Hilton, Mouawad

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A New Hotel for Beirut_____ The Hilton Beirut Downtown is the latest luxury hotel to open in the Lebanese capital. Featuring 158 rooms and suites, the stylish hotel boats a rooftop pool, fitness center, sauna, steam room, lobby bar and Gatsy House restaurant. Set right in the city center, steps from the Beirut Souks and Zaitunay Bay, the hotel also offers panoramic Mediterranean views. “Hilton Beirut Downtown is perfect for travelers looking for a world-class hospitality in a prime location,” says general manager Issam Ajouz. “While at the hotel, guests can sample Mediterranean dishes, rejuvenate at the spa and rooftop pool or simply relax in a modern, spacious guestroom. We are pleased to have started welcoming guests to this beautiful new property.” hilton.com


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Housewarming by the Sea_____ Lebanese designers were celebrated for an entire month on the second floor of Aïshti Home Solutions at Aïshti by the Sea. From December 15 until mid-January, in a space curated by Lebanese architect Rabih Geha, clothes, accessories and pieces of furniture were displayed among Aïshti by the Sea’s furniture offerings, in a vast space overlooking the Mediterranean. Some of the featured designers included Yassmin Saleh, Second St and Timi Hayek (fashion), Alexandra Hakim, Joumana Dagher and Vanina (jewelry and bags) and Mawsam, George Amatoury and Anastasia Nysten (furniture). It was a great new way to highlight the best that Lebanon has to offer.


In Focus

I See You_____ A breathtaking and massive photo exhibition at the MAXXI Museum in Rome chronicles the work of award-winning photographer Paolo Pellegrin. Occupying various levels of the Zaha Hadid-designed museum space, “Paolo Pellegrin: Un’Antologia,” includes numerous previously unseen works and a number of videos, the whole covering a 20-year period in the Italian photojournalist’s career, from 1998 to 2017. With a single look through his lens, and mostly in black-and-white but with the occasional splash of color, Pellegrin captures racial tensions, poverty and crime in the United States, migrants in Lesbos and three ISIS prisoners waiting to be processed in Iraqi Kurdistan. A particularly gripping photo from summer 2006 shows a bare-chested man with his hand extended in Beirut’s southern suburbs moments after an Israeli air strike. With over 150 images on display, the show provides a harrowing look into human suffering, while also communicating the intimate beauty of mankind. Until March 10, maxxi.art

Moncler, Paolo Pellegrin/Magnum Photos, Venice Carnival

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Masks of Venice_____ While Venice can lay claim to some of the world’s most incredible events, one that stands out is the Venice Carnival. The spectacular annual celebration takes place during the 10 days preceding Shrove Tuesday and this year features gala dinners, shows, masquerade balls, party cruises, a circus and much more, with tickets ranging from €80 to €800, depending on the event. Just watching carnival-goers in stupendous, inventive costumes is a treat onto itself. February 22-March 4, venice-carnival-italy.com

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Bubble Steps_____ Moncler’s Bubble sneakers are the happiest shoes of the season. Their lightweight sole is shaped like bubbles, which in turn support the sole of the foot with individual islands of ultra-soft rubber. The upper part of the shoe is formed by a knitted sock in various color options: white with red, blue and a contrasting white sole, or navy blue with a turquoise sole. Available at Aïshti Downtown and Aïshti by the Sea


In Focus

Everybody Loves Oprah_____ The Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, DC is now hosting an exhibit about one of the world’s most influential and recognizable figures: Oprah Winfrey. With video clips on various subjects, interactive interviews with Winfrey and costumes from her films Beloved and The Color Purple, and through Winfrey’s personal story and her 25-year daytime talk show, “Watching Oprah” seeks to examine issues of power, gender and the media in contemporary American history and culture. Don’t miss it. Until June 30, nmaahc.si.edu

State of the Union_____ It’s Beirut’s newest best-kept secret. Union Marks, hidden in Bourj Hammoud and fronted by a garden, is a hard-to-find watering hole that’s quickly become the in place for people in the know. Specialty cocktails here include Felt, made with gin, Cinzano Rosso, Campari and grapefruit juice, and Velvet, a mix of mezcal, tequila, orange juice and hibiscus-habanero syrup. The place also serves Armenian-inspired bar bites, like special sausages rolled in whole wheat markouk bread and mante (baked filo) stuffed with either meat or sojouk. Enjoy! @unionmarks

The Power of Color_____ A new exhibit at the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York takes a look at the work of painters from the 1960s who made great, abundant use of color. Focusing on the artists who came after Jackson Pollock and worked in parallel with the era’s great luminaries like Andy Warhol, the show looks to the particular power of color to articulate questions around perception, race, gender and the coding of space. The exhibit is titled “Spilling Over: Painting Color in the 1960s,” and it includes pieces – some of them recent museum acquisitions – by such artists as Emma Amos, Helen Frankenthaler, Sam Gilliam, Marcia Hafif, Ellsworth Kelly and Morris Louis. Opening on March 19, whitney.org

Raya Farhat, Harpo Inc./George Burns, MICA/ARS

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WEEKENDMAXMARA.COM

Franchisee Weekend Max Mara: ANTELIAS - SEASIDE ROAD, AÏSHTI BY THE SEA, LEVEL 3



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OBJECTS OF DESIRE Photography Raya Farhat


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BAG MIU MIU __________ THE SMALL MADRAS LEATHER SHOULDER BAG FROM MIU MIU IS A WHITE MARVEL


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BAG CULT GAIA __________ WHEN THERE’S A HAPPY FROG ADORNING YOUR BAG, YOU KNOW THAT SPRING IS JUST AROUND THE CORNER


Shoes Dior _______ Pink slingbacks – complete with joyous J’adior ribbons – are the shoes to worship and adore this spring season

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Shoes Prada ________ Stay one step ahead of your peers with Prada’s sleek patent leather pointy toe pumps

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BAG FENDI __________ THE FENDI X FILA BEADS FRINGE LOGO PRINTED BUCKET CROSS BODY BAG IS A COLLECTOR’S ITEM


BAG ROCÍO __________ BE A FASHION STANDOUT WITH ROCÍO’S TWIGGY BAG. IT’S STYLISHLY MADE OF WHITE WOOD!

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FAKHRY BEY STREET, BEIRUT SOUKS, DOWTOWN BEIRUT AÏSHTI BY THE SEA, ANTELIAS


Words Marwan Naaman

CONVENTIONAL COOL Zegna’s Alessandro Sartori reimagines the Italian brand while celebrating its heritage

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Alessandro Sartori is in the process of reinventing Ermenegildo Zegna. As artistic director of the illustrious Italian menswear brand – a post he’s held since 2016 – he’s been charting a new course for Zegna, one that maintains the brand’s traditional values while reflecting the needs of the 21st century man. “We need to keep changing to be the same,” he explained last November, when he came to Lebanon to highlight the brand’s fall/winter 2018-19 collection and introduce the dazzling spring/summer 2019 line. Sartori was originally artistic director of Z Zegna, the label’s more casual and sporty line, a post he held from 2003 until he left the company to join Berluti in 2011. During his five-year tenure at Berluti, he transformed the elite cobbler into a men’s lifestyle brand, adding points-of-sale across the globe and creating a bespoke silhouette for the brand. In 2016, he exited Berluti and re-joined Ermenegildo Zegna, as artistic director across all Zegna brands, most notably the three main menswear collections: Couture, Su Misura (madeto-measure) and Z Zegna. “I came back because Gildo [Gildo Zegna, CEO of the group] wanted to develop a new journey for the brand, to turn the three lines into one big brand and be the biggest player in men’s luxury.”

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And when it comes to company values, Sartori explains that Zegna’s mission, “to keep alive the idea that product quality can only flourish where there is a ‘culture of beauty,’ a culture that must also respect the environment and local communities,” is something of the utmost importance to him, a path he is proud to follow. In honor of Sartori’s Lebanon visit last November, the ground floor entrance to the Aïshti Foundation was transformed into a fashion wonderland, highlighting some of the key looks from Zegna’s winter offerings and from each of the three lines. The backdrop was a very autumnal scene, complete with fall foliage, bare trees and coolweather flair, in a nod to the collection, which this time around was inspired by Oasi Zegna, the nature reserve around the company’s base in Northern Italy. A veritable ode to nature and fashion in winter, the display featured luxurious overcoats, jackets, sweaters, sweatpants, shirts and sneakers in colors that ranged from gray and snow white to earthen brown and leafy green – virtually every piece you need for a striking yet practical wardrobe.

For spring and summer 2019, Sartori took Zegna into a more playful direction, one that captures the carefree feeling of the warm-weather season with sun-drenched colors like olive green, pink, yellow and various shades of blue. He said that the main inspiration for the collection came from the Mondadori headquarters outside Milan designed by legendary Brazilian architect Oscar Niemeyer. Bold, sinuous and sensually curved, the structure is a modernist marvel built in 1968 and featuring rhythmic but differently sized arches. Mondadori’s perennial elegance served as a touchstone for Sartori, who sought to infuse his spring/summer collection with the same playful yet

Below: Alessandro Sartori, artistic director of Ermenegildo Zegna Opposite page: Zegna’s spring/summer 2019 collection, launched at the Mondadori headquarters outside Milan

Luca de Santis, Zegna

While reimagining the Zegna brand was one of the reasons Sartori decided to return to the Zegna fold, he also did so because the company offers values and an environment few others can match. “For a designer to have the full equipment, the full kitchen space, is very interesting and inspiring,” Sartori said. “We design our own fabrics, we have our own farms. We were the first to have a Vicuña wool license in Peru. And we have our bespoke atelier and our stores, of course.”


“AS FAR AS FASHION IS CONCERNED, OUR CLOTHES COMMUNICATE A CONSTANT MESSAGE”

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timeless touch – he even held the Zegna runway show at Mondadori, using the building as a backdrop for the event.

Some collection highlights include loosefitting pants, either with stripes or checks, slightly oversized blazers with bold prints and cardigan-inspired sleeveless tops with zip-up fronts. The XXX logo, first launched in 2016, dramatically adorns various pieces of the collection. “Visually, XXX is now the

logo of Zegna Couture,” Sartori said. “And the logo is here to stay.”

Always at the forefront of technical innovation, Zegna last season introduced its first suit in the label’s trademark Techmarino material. “Techmarino washand-go is very special,” said Sartori, while professing his love of fabric. “It’s pure wool without chemicals, machine washable and you don’t need to iron it.


Above: Alessandro Sartori in the Zegna atelier Below: Details from Zegna’s spring/summer 2019 collection 99


MONDADORI IS A MODERNIST MARVEL BUILT IN 1968

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Backstage at Zegna’s spring/summer 2019 runway show at the Mondadori headquarters outside Milan

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You just hang it out to dry and then wear it.” For summer, Sartori created jersey knit pieces in Techmarino, pushing Zegna into tech fashion territory. “As far as fashion is concerned, our clothes communicate a constant message,” said Sartori. “But Zegna also conveys a social message. We create the best fabrics while taking care of the community and the environment.”


Words Stephanie d’Arc Taylor Photography Marco Pinarelli

IN THE STUDIO WITH SYBIL LAYOUS

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UNDER THE FLOR:ISH LABEL, SYBIL LAYOUS CREATES FLORAL MARVELS THAT ARE WILD WITH IMAGINATION

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Sybil Layous is serving up a sexy new twist to Beirut’s flower scene. In the three months since she launched Flor:ish, the budding floral designer has already gone from strength to strength, securing projects with big players in Beirut’s fashion scene, including a window display at the Vanina boutique in Gemmayze, and a presentation by Lara Khoury that debuted at Bernard Khoury’s Qusar Tower in November 2018.

When looking at the arrangements she puts together, it’s not hard to see why Flor:ish is a new darling at the intersection of art and fashion. Layous’ arrangements are artistic, modern and edgy, a world away from the saccharine arrangements of stale, predictable flowers from the neighborhood florist or your cousin’s wedding. She selects flowers you may not have seen before at all, and certainly not in the context of an arrangement. A perennial favorite of hers? The anthurium, in seemingly every color of the rainbow. (A purple ombre – lavender deepening to indigo – is particularly striking.) “I find the anthurium fascinating and weird. It feels like it’s almost made of


Anthuriums are so much fun, they’re fierce, funny and sensual. They come in different colors, shapes and sizes. They’re my favorite because they are such oddballs, so under-appreciated

A buff raku vase made by ceramic artist Hana Vasak (Dáša Ceramics). Part of my personal collection of vessels, this one particularly feels like a relic, an artefact

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This was a gift from a wonderful Qatari lady, a bottle of pure musk perfume. The packaging is so pretty, the size is perfect and the application ritual is so elegant

My husband and I have been going to Ibiza every summer for the last five years. The island is so magical and it’s become almost like a summer home. Every year, we bring back one seashell as a keepsake

This is a sun and moon kenzan. Not only is it a beautiful object, it’s also very utilitarian. I use it as an alternative to floral foam, a very toxic material I’ve avoided using since I launched


When I first decided to launch Flor:ish I figured I needed to start investing in good tools. These scissors were my first investment. Even though they’re not as sharp as they used to be, I still have them around the studio

My husband and I make sure to hit the flea markets in every city we visit: mostly to buy vintage vessels, but also, randomly, we’ve been bringing back these marbled eggs in different colors and sizes. We keep them around the house in bowls or use them as paper-weights

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My family has this collection of vintage Art Deco lighters. Each one belonged to a family member. I use them occasionally to light incense or candles

Working with clay is so meditative. When I have the time, I go to a pottery studio to unwind. I bought these potter’s rib and ribbon in Copenhagen last year, for a pottery workshop. I keep them around the studio as a reminder to take time off


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rubber or plastic,” she says, over green tea at Kalei in Mar Mikhael. “It’s not popular; people think it’s a phallic-looking flower, but I think it’s the ugly duckling, and I find it intriguing.”

Layous’ arrangements aren’t just flowers, though. Among the anthuriums, banana flowers and South African proteas Layous favors are dramatic feathers and broad, sweeping leaves, which she paints in metallic hues at her home studio in Rabieh, north of Beirut. After training in graphic design at the Lebanese A m e r i c a n University, Layous had a life many people dream of: living in Paris and managing digital communications for fashion label Maison Margiela, under the auspices of the legendary John Galliano. So when she left her job and her life in Paris to move to Qatar in 2016 (to join her now-husband, ending six years of long distance), finding a fulfilling way to apply her skills was a challenge.

change course. “I was so bored without a job that I was scrolling my phone all day,” Layous says. “I had to rethink my career. My husband and I were in Beirut on holiday and he said ‘do you think it’s time to go back [to Qatar]?’ I said ‘book yourself a ticket.’ I missed being creative and working with my hands.” Three months into the Flor:ish journey, it’s clear Layous no longer has to miss creativity.

“I FIND THE ANTHURIUM FASCINATING AND WEIRD. IT FEELS LIKE IT’S ALMOST MADE OF RUBBER OR PLASTIC...I FIND IT INTRIGUING”

After dabbling in the Qatari fashion and arts scene, she decided to



Words Michelle Merheb

JEWELRY FOR A NEW LIFESTYLE Tabbah introduces New Looks to take you from morning into night

There’s something new at the house of Tabbah. In an attempt to appeal to a younger clientele and to expand its reach across Europe, the United States and Asia, the venerable Lebanese jeweler has launched the New Looks collection, featuring dynamic, easy-to-wear and greatly varied offerings. Simple yet refined, classical yet trendy, the new pieces signal a marked departure for Tabbah. Originally founded in 1862 by Joseph Tabbah, the jewelry house now operates under the helm of artistic director Nagib Tabbah Jr., great great grandson of the founder. To create the new pieces, Tabbah Jr. looked to the house’s archives, drawing inspiration from the postwar collections created at the dawn of Lebanese independence to reflect a Middle Eastern clientele that was quickly becoming westernized. “A piece of jewelry, as precious as it may be, has to emerge from its safe deposit box and shine under the light of day as much as it does during the night,” Tabbah Jr. says, when explaining how his new creations are designed to be worn at any time of day.

Much like the prestigious jewelry that the house of Tabbah designs for royalty, stars and celebrities, the three New Looks collections – Reptilia, Aquatica and B-Glam – continue to boast precious and brilliantly hued stones, but this time around, the necklaces, bracelets, rings and earrings are lighter and sexier, designed to be worn in a decidedly more casual manner. The Aquatica range, for example, is inspired by a dramatic diamond necklace from the Tabbah archives,

but in its new incarnation, the jewelry range has shed its adornments and taken on the simple, rhythmic elegance of a wave. The sinuous, sensual Reptilia range is inspired by the snake, a symbol of luck and protection, and its sleek gold pieces come with or without precious stones. Then there’s the B-Glam line, the most youthful and unconventional of the three New Looks collections. Made with gold and pear-shaped diamonds, the B-Glam pieces have unusual yet stupendous new shapes, to be worn in a novel manner.

While each piece is unique, they’re all signature Tabbah, featuring pure lines, precious stones and an ethos that’s timeless and contemporary all at once. “Our jewelry reflects a new lifestyle,” says Tabbah Jr. “It’s designed to be worn at all times.” And surely designed to be treasured as well.

Tabbah

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Two spring trends to shake up and revitalize your look: sexy mini dresses and bold, eyepopping patterns.


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TO MARKET, TO MARKET PHOTOGRAPHY BACHAR SROUR

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This page: Valentino bag Opposite page: Gucci T-shirt, Helmut Lang skirt and Balenciaga shoes


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This page: Gucci dress, Saint Laurent bag and Gucci shoes Opposite page: Dior sunglasses


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This page: Balenciaga T-shirt, Helmut Lang skirt and Dior shoes Opposite page: Off-White bag


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MAKING A SPLASH PHOTOGRAPHY FIONA TORRE STYLING LAUREN MALPAS SHOT ON LOCATION IN PARIS

She’s in a Gucci jumpsuit, a Diane von Furstenberg skirt, Falke tights, Balenciaga shoes and Céline earrings

She wears a skirt, jacket and shoes by Gucci, and a blouse by Dries Van Noten


She’s in a Prada total look This page: She’s in a Miu Miu gown, Miu Miu heels andDixon Courrèges sunglasses Model Callie at Next Models Opposite page: She’s in a Dsquared2 shirtHair andSirsa vintage blazer Ponciano Makeup Mariko Hirano



This page: She’s in a Prada total look Opposite page: She’s in a Gucci total look



This page: She’s in a MaxMara trench, Balenciaga stockings, Jimmy Choo heels, Maison Michel hat and vintage choker and top She’s a Balenciaga total look Opposite page: She’s in a Valentino dress andinSaint Laurent sunglasses


This page: She’s in a Prada total look Opposite page: She’s in a Stella McCartney dress and Dior sunglasses


This page: She’s in a Miu Miu top, Miu Miu shorts and vintage hat Opposite page: She’s in Dsquared2 pants, Jimmy Choo heels and vintage blazer


She’s in a Céline total look


This page: She’s in a Valentino dress and Saint Laurent sunglasses Opposite page: She’s in a MaxMara trench, Balenciaga stockings, Maison Michel hat and vintage top This page: She’s in a Max Mara jacket, Azzedine Alaïa body, Le Silla shoes and SaintatLaurent earrings Model Elodie M Management Left: She’s in aMakeup Stella McCartney dress Vanessa Bellini Hair Sachi


THE MIRROR HAS TWO FACES PHOTOGRAPHY CRISTINA CORAL STYLING AMELIANNA LOIACONO SHOT ON LOCATION IN TRIESTE, ITALY


Dresses by Dolce & Gabbana



This page: Philosophy di Lorenzo Serrafini dresses and Dior jewelry Opposite page: Attico dresses and Marni shoes



This page: Fendi dresses Opposite page: Red Valentino total looks



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This page: Dresses by BlazĂŠ and shoes by Marni Opposite page: Dresses by La Jolie Fille




Alberta Ferretti dresses


This page: Philosophy di Lorenzo Serafini dresses Opposite page: Attico dresses Models Gaia and Alessia Capitanio Hair and makeup Cecilia Carbonelli



Words Marwan Naaman

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Pulitzer Amsterdam

SPIRIT OF THE CITY


AMSTERDAM’S PRIZED PROPERTY

WHERE TO STAY NEXT TIME YOU VISIT HOLLAND’S VIBRANT CAPITAL The Pulitzer Amsterdam encapsulates the city’s special brand of magic. Set right along one of Amsterdam’s scenic canals, the hotel is made up of 25 Golden Age canal houses that are all interconnected via a glorious network of gardens, glass-enclosed walkways, stairs and hidden passages. In fact, many visitors simply enjoy walking around the five-star property and discovering its many secrets, from stylishly appointed event spaces (there are 10) to lush secret gardens and cozy hideaways.

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A CLASSIC REDEFINED The 25 canal houses date back to the 17th and 18th centuries and were once the homes of wealthy Dutch merchants and aristocrats. Fast forward to 1960, when American businessman Peter Pulitzer showed an interest in 12 of these run-down canal houses, purchasing them and transforming them into a hotel. Over the ensuing years, Pulitzer scoops up more homes, expanding his initial hotel and eventually selling the whole lot in 1990. In 2015, the current owners decided to completely overhaul the hotel, calling upon architect Jacu Strauss (formerly of Tom Dixon Studio and now creative director of Lore Group, which he also founded) for the great undertaking. Looking to the hotel’s colorful history for inspiration, Strauss decided to blend traditional craftsmanship with contemporary comfort to reinvent the entire place and create a unique destination.


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Of the 225 rooms and suites created by Strauss, no two are alike. First of all, they are all shaped differently, since they’re set on various floors of different canal houses, and decorated distinctively as well. There are, however, certain commonalities that tie the whole place together: an emphasis on soft pink, deep blue and yellow hues, generous use of dark wood, mini bars placed on Art Deco trolleys and sometimes even bikes hanging from the ceiling in certain rooms – a nod to Amsterdam’s famous bike culture. Strauss also envisioned themed suites, including the extravagant Art Collector’s suite (complete with spectacular works of art) and the Book Collector’s suite, with its whimsical archway built of books and dozens of gorgeous coffee table books. COCKTAILS AND A BITE Beyond its rooms and suites, the Pulitzer Amsterdam is a veritable playground, beginning with its sprawling lobby, where lingering for hours on end among modern Dutch furnishings and classic Dutch art is a pleasure. At the far end of the lobby, right along the inner garden, Pause offers both indoor and outdoor seating where guests can enjoy delectable pastries, coffee, light fare and wine. With its green velvet seats, marble counter and gold accents, Pause has quickly become a favored destination for Instagrammers looking to snap that special shot. After 3pm, you can also head to Pulitzer’s


Bar, where modern and classic cocktails are served in plush Art Deco-inspired interiors.

A great place to dine is the in-house restaurant Jansz, named after 17th-century Dutch merchant Volkert Jansz, who once owned many of Amsterdam’s canal houses. The building that houses Jansz used to be an apothecary, so Strauss designed the restaurant’s street entrance to look like an old world pharmacy, with medicine bottles lining the shelves and green

velvet benches set along the walls. Beyond the entrance, there are three separate dining areas, each slightly different but all calling to mind a stylish, postmodern brasserie. The menu is international, with a Dutch foundation that emphasizes contemporary cuisine. For example, dinner options include diver scallops, tuna tartare, pea soup, veal entrecote and lobster risotto, while dessert offerings range from chocolate fondant and crème brulée to homemade ice cream. Jansz is also where breakfast is served, giving guests the option to enjoy a generous buffet spread or order à la carte. AMSTERDAM TO DISCOVER One of the Pulitzer Amsterdam’s other great assets is its location. Hotel guests are in the midst of the city’s many attractions, within easy reach of Amsterdam’s treasures. The Anne Frank House is steps from the hotel, as are the historic Theo Thijssen Museum, the Houseboat Museum and both the Huis Marseille and Foam photography museums. The Museum Quarter, home to the Van Gogh Museum and the Stedelijk Museum, among others, is a quick 10-minute ride by tram. The hotel is also walking distance from Amsterdam’s famed Red Light District, where ladies of the night beckon from behind store windows.

One of the most magical ways to discover Amsterdam is via a canal cruise, and you can do so aboard one of the Pulitzer Amsterdam’s two historic vessels: the 1909 Tourist, which is operational year-round, and the 45-year-old, open-air Belle, available from the end of March through October. Cruise around the city and then head back to the Pulitzer for dinner and drinks – it’s one the best ways to experience Amsterdam’s charms. Visit pulitzeramsterdam.com

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Words Marwan Naaman

YOUR BEST FRIEND IN BRUSSELS

HOTEL AMIGO BECKONS WITH ITS STORIED PAST AND PRIME LOCATION The Grand Place is perhaps Brussels’ most famed attraction. With its spired Hotel de Ville, ornate buildings, cobblestones and narrow medieval streets radiating outward, the Grand Place exudes a captivating historic aura. Right behind this engaging central square stands Hotel Amigo, a splendid property with a colorful history of its own, stretching 500 years into the past.

Part of Rocco Forte Hotels, Hotel Amigo is housed inside a former prison whose nickname was Amigo when

Rocco Forte Hotels

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Belgium was part of the Spanish Netherlands during the 16th century. The property has held its current incarnation since 1957, when the Blaton family converted the landmark structure into a hotel to host royals and celebrities for the 1958 Brussels World’s Fair.

Rocco Forte Hotels currently operates 14 hotels across the globe, including Hotel Amigo. Some of the prestigious properties that form part of their portfolio include Hotel de Russie in Rome, The Balmoral in Edinburgh and Villa Kennedy in Frankfurt. While the properties are all different – each gleans a significant portion of its identity from the city in which it serves – there are some commonalities: top-of-the-line food and drink, spacious and elegant design, exceptional location and a signature Anglo-Italian style. Hotel Amigo, like its sister properties, encompasses all aspects of the Rocco Forte philosophy.

SLEEPING IN STYLE Hotel Amigo is home to 154 guestrooms and 19 suites, including the spectacular top-floor Armand Blaton Suite, named after the hotel’s founders and replete with art pieces from the Blaton family’s private collection. The rooms were all created by Rocco Forte Hotels’ design director Olga Polizzi, sister of founder and chairman Sir Rocco Forte. Polizzi’s design nods to the city of Brussels include artworks by René Magritte, Art Nouveau-inspired touches and even Tintin cartoons on the bathroom walls. “Brussels always gives me inspiration: wonderful antique shops and the Grand Place, as stunning and perfect a square as any I have seen,” said Polizzi. Many of the rooms and suites boast views of the Grand Place’s distinctive structures and of Brussels itself, so that the city is your constant companion. SIPS AND NIBBLES The hotel’s star restaurant is Bocconi, where superlative Italian dishes are created using Belgian ingredients. Spacious and doused in various shades of blue, Bocconi offers an ever-changing menu that may include traditional lasagna, risotto with leek and red mullet or tonnarelli cacio e pepe with red prawns. You can also opt for fish (sole, turbot) or meat (pork, lamb, veal) dishes. Desserts include tiramisu, rum baba and waffles with ricotta and figs. Bocconi also hosts the daily breakfast buffet, which includes a succulent spread of cheese, charcuterie, cereal, bread, jam and much more.

Then there’s Bar A, the incredibly popular lobby bar where guests and locals congregate at all times, but especially in the early evening, after working hours. With its plush, orange-hued chairs and large windows overlooking Brussels’ cobblestone streets,

Bar A enjoys a setting that few other establishments can match. In addition to light bar fare, the place serves some of the city’s best cocktails, including the Prescription Julep, made with cognac, rye whiskey, fresh mint, sugar and soda water, and Frozen Bubbles, prepared with Armagnac, hibiscus syrup and champagne. Bar A also serves a decadent Chocolate Afternoon Tea, featuring a variety of chocolate drinks plus pralines and sweets by celebrated Belgian chocolatier Pierre Marcolini.

WALKING THE CITY A stay at Hotel Amigo also places all of Brussels’ wonders within your reach. A one-minute walk takes you to the Grand Place and to the fascinating Museum of the City of Brussels, while the iconic Manneken Pis is three minutes by foot. Nearby attractions also include the Fondation Jacques Brel, dedicated to the country’s most illustrious crooner, and the GardeRobe Manneken Pis, where you can admire the statue dressed in a multitude of costumes. Famed Brussels museums, including the Magritte Museum, the Royal Museums of Fine Arts of Belgium and many more, are a 10-minute walk away.

A ONE-MINUTE WALK TAKES YOU TO THE GRAND PLACE, WHILE THE ICONIC MANNEKEN PIS IS THREE MINUTES BY FOOT

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No visit to Brussels would be complete without a gourmand sampling of chocolate. Right outside Hotel Amigo you’ve got Neuhaus, Godiva, Galler and Leonidas, plus more niche offerings like Chocopolis, Elisabeth, Darcis and Passion Chocolat. Be sure to drop by Maison Dandoy to try their legendary speculoos. You’ll find it hard to leave Hotel Amigo, but a good supply of chocolate and speculoos might just sweeten your farewells. Visit roccofortehotels.com/hotels-and-resorts/hotel-amigo


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Words Marwan Naaman

PARIS I LOVE YOU

HÔTEL DU ROND-POINT DES CHAMPS-ELYSÉES IS YOUR PARISIAN HIDEAWAY

Esprit de France

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ESPRIT DE FRANCE PROPERTIES ARE RICH IN HISTORY AND SITUATED NEAR ARTISTIC AND CULTURAL LANDMARKS When it opened in mid-2018, Hôtel du Rond-Point des Champs-Elysées introduced a new concept to the French capital. The intimate 36-room property, with interiors inspired by the Art Deco flair of the 1920s, felt more like an elegant Parisian residence than it did a hotel. Hôtel du Rond-Point des Champs-Elysées is part of Esprit de France, a collection of 10 unique Parisian hotels and 37 additional chateaux, hotels and residences across France. The year 2018 was particularly significant for the company, as it unveiled two Parisian properties (Hôtel du Rond-Point des Champs-Elysées and Maison Armance), plus Hôtel Louvre Lens, situated three hours’ drive north of Paris. With each of its properties, Esprit de France strives to provide an authentic cultural experience for its guests, and it does so by selecting properties that are architecturally significant, rich in history and situated near artistic and cultural landmarks. For Hôtel du Rond-Point des Champs-Elysées, Esprit de France asked Milan’s Dimore Studio to design the new hotel concept and then hired Vincent Bastie and Arnaud Bezhadi from French firm Artefak to execute the designs. Dimore Studio sought to draw out the building’s character by emphasizing the Art Deco elements that were introduced on the stone façade

back in the 1920s. The addition of green marble at the base of the building plus yellow marble siding worked to provide a striking contrast to the exterior’s creamcolored stone.

The hotel’s lobby exudes the same Roaring Twenties spirit as the façade, with green velvet seats, tables with gold accents and dark marble flooring. Three steps up from the lobby, you have the hotel’s cozy Bar Daphné. Named after famed Rebecca author Daphné du Maurier, who used to partake in forbidden trysts within this very hotel, the alcove bar features mirrored walls and dark green hues. Breakfast is served in the hotel restaurant, which lies directly behind the bar area. Rather than having a buffet, the place offers an elegantly spare menu with three different formulas, including freshly brewed coffee and freshly baked breads and pastries. A patio leads to a library with its own fireplace, while on the basement level, guests can enjoy a new thermal area, complete with a pool, lounging area and Parisian hammam.

The 36 rooms and suites – each one different from the next as envisioned by Dimore Studio – are plush

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From the Rond-Point des Champs-Elysées, where the hotel is located, much of Paris is at your fingertips. You can walk to the Champs-Elysées, Arc de Triomphe, Jardin des Tuileries, Grand Palais, Petit Palais and Place de la Concorde. Dreamy Parc Monceau is a 15-minute walk, as are the Palais Galliera and Palais de Tokyo. At Hôtel du Rond-Point des Champs-Elysées, you’ll fall in love again, with Paris and its timeless beauty. Visit paris-hotel-rondpoint-champselysees.com

©Jeremy Bittermann

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cocoons of utter tranquility. The color palette ranges from powder pink to emerald green, with generous use of mahogany wood. Room furnishings and light fixtures are contemporary but inspired by the luxury of bygone Transatlantic liners, while reinvented erotic illustrations from the 1920s line some of the bed frames, in a nod to that most mischievous of decades.


LENNY KRAVITZ


Words Marwan Naaman

TELLING AN UNTOLD STORY Sir David Adjaye talks about his vision for the National Museum of African American History and Culture In a city celebrated for its museums and cultural attractions, the National Museum of African American History and Culture (NMAAHC) stands out. Completed in 2016 and set on Washington, DC’s National Mall, the NMAAHC saw four major design firms – The Freelon Group, Adjaye Associates, Davis Brody Bond and the SmithGroupJJR – come together to create the American capital’s newest landmark.

Alan Karchmer/NMAAHC

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Ghanaian-British architect Sir David Adjaye oversaw the formal development of the building design and was the creative force behind the building’s outer layer. His idea was to imagine a new kind of space that would function as more than a museum, while paying tribute to people who had often been left out of America’s historical narrative. “This project was really about prioritizing cultural narrative and identity,” Adjaye says. “I have always understood this project to be about people of one culture understanding the experience of people from a different culture. As such, it operates simultaneously


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This page: The National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, DC (above) and the museum’s ground level and entrance hall (right) Opposite page: Sir David Adjaye


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“THE BUILDING CONTINUALLY REFERENCES BACK TO ITS CONTEXT, WITH NINE LENSES, OR CUTS IN THE FAÇADE, OVERLOOKING KEY SITES IN THE CAPITAL”

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as a museum, a memorial and a space for crosscultural collaboration and learning. It is a specific story with a universal application. The design represents African American heritage in a global context and is about celebrating a group of people who have given American culture so much.”

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His aim is particularly evident in his singular design for NMAAHC’s outer shell – the part that visitors first see when they come upon the building. “The tiered, inverted pyramid shape of the building was inspired by a traditional African column that features a crown – or corona – at its top,” Adjaye says, “and represents the aesthetic language the Africans brought to America as slaves.” He was also aware of the building’s enviable location, right on the National Mall and directly across the Washington Monument. “For NMAAHC, I wanted the design to respond to the building’s significant location on the National Mall. The corona is based on elements of the Washington Monument, closely matching the 17-degree angle of the capstone and the ornamental bronze lattice panel size, and pattern has been developed using the Monument stones as a reference. The building continually references back to its context, with nine lenses, or cuts in the façade, overlooking key sites in the capital.” Once inside the museum, those cuts in the façade allow glorious views of the city, particularly at sundown, when bits and pieces of Washington, DC – the Washington Monument, the White House and other Smithsonian museums – appear to shimmer and glow under the ever-changing light. Some museum highlights include the Central Hall, a vast, open area that functions as the museum’s primary public space, and the 350-seat Oprah Winfrey Theater, where various performances are staged. The Contemplative Court, a light-filled memorial area with

a raised overhead oculus and water cascading from the sky, offers visitors a peaceful space for reflection.

A year before NMAAHC opened to the public, Adjaye inaugurated another one of his landmark projects: Aïshti by the Sea in Lebanon. While the projects are different – one is a retail and art space, the other a cultural institution – there are undeniable similarities between the two. “I approached Aïshti as an opportunity to present a new building typology that combines the worlds of art and commerce. What was compelling to me was the opportunity to create these two distinctive programs and then, at considered moments, allow some dynamic interaction between them,” he says. “But in many ways, it was very much a strategy of curating two distinct environments and then allowing them to flow into each other in very specific ways. This idea of connections and journeys within a building was also part of the narrative strategy for NMAAHC.”

Beyond its architectural importance, Adjaye’s design for NMAAHC seeks to act as a bridge between communities, while shedding light on the cultural and artistic impact of African Americans on the United States. “A project with this much cultural resonance brought an inherent responsibility to do justice to a complex and significant history of a people whose stories are still too rarely told,” Adjaye says. “This museum was a long-awaited symbol of the African American contribution to the nation’s history and identity and means so much to so many people. That was weighty and challenging, but also invigorating and incredibly meaningful.”


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View of the National Museum of African American History and Culture on Washington, DC’s National Mall


Above: Contemplative Court. Below: “Taking the Stage” exhibit

Alan Karchmer/NMAAHC, Eric Long/NMAAHC

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nancygonzalez.com

Aïshti, Downtown Beirut 01.99 11 11

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Aïshti, by the Sea, Antelias 04. 71 77 16


Words Niku Kasmai

PROMISE OF A NEW DAY

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Burberry

Fendi

From prints galore to intricate craft work, spring trends herald a fresh and festive fashion season


offerings with pretty pastels and other neutral shades: a utilitarian beige miniskirt with oversized pockets looks delicious with a bleached blue denim jacket, while fitted beige cotton pants with flared bottoms go great with a casual powder pink jacket. At Dsquared2, beige is always paired with bright, vivacious colors: check out the beige shorts worn with a colorful striped corset. A head-to-toe beige look comes courtesy of Spanish label Loewe, including sleek pants worn with an oversized, loose-fitting shirt – and a green collar for a slightly eccentric touch. Besides Burberry, Fendi is the other major label to celebrate beige in grand fashion. The Italian label’s designs include a tailored beige leather dress with futuristic power shoulders, a beige leather mini dress that zips up in front and a long beige leather skirt adorned with the Fendi logo and with an ultra-high waist. In a mostly colorful collection, French fashion house Balenciaga introduced one beige number for men: a loose-fitting coat with the words Balenciaga and Paris emblazoned across the coat’s entire length.

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Loewe

That joyous feeling of spring is back, and with it come the latest designer collections. This year, the warm weather season is marked by an abundance of mischievous and playful trends, for both men and women. Here’s a look at four key trends spotted on the 2019 spring runway.

BEIGE KNOWS BEST It’s perhaps the most unexpected spring trend: the color beige. A great number of fashion labels offer outfits in this most neutral of colors, sometimes as a total look and other times mixed in with whites and pastels. Beige is most evident in Riccardo Tisci’s first collection for Burberry. As a nod to the British fashion house’s checkered-and-beige past, the designer unveiled a women’s collection in which beige reigns supreme and is enhanced with Burberry’s signature check here and there. From the classic Burberry trench – reinvented with Tisci’s sleek lines – to flouncy dresses and fitted mid-length skirts, beige dominates the label’s summer outfits. Italian designer Alberta Ferretti pairs her beige

Alberta Ferretti


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Dolce & Gabbana

SENSUAL CRAFT True, the 1980s are big in spring 2019, but the 1970s have made a noticeable appearance as well, with an abundance of craft elements seemingly inspired by the immortal Stevie Nicks and her ‘70s heyday: crochet, fisherman weaves, artisanal handiwork and macramé appliqué. Dolce & Gabbana leads the pack, with a magnificent collection in which every item appears to have been made by hand, by skilled craftspeople and artisans. There’s a heart-stopping top covered with oversized and abundantly colored flowers in 3D; a tiny, tiny skirt with hand-stitched, rainbow-colored beads; and a beige and blue tasseled dressed that effortlessly sways with the beauty of 1,000 fringes. It’s a veritable tour de force for the Italian brand.

The craft trend extends to British label Alexander McQueen, where dresses and tops in light summer hues

are reminiscent of traditional handmade lace. Similarly, at Alberta Ferretti, you’ll find white crocheted pants, chiffon caftan-style dresses and knitwear in the form of a long, flowing transparent dress. Loewe pushes the craft trend to the fore as well, offering a light blue top with an outrageous, cascading fringe collar in a mix of pink, blue and orange.

DOLCE & GABBANA’S LOOKS APPEAR TO HAVE BEEN MADE BY SKILLED ARTISANS


Spring styles feature an abundance of craft elements seemingly inspired by the immortal Stevie Nicks and her ‘70s heyday

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Alberta Ferretti

Loewe

Alexander McQueen


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Burberry

Burberry

Dsquared2

Alexander McQueen


Prints of every kind and of all sizes show up in various spring collections

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Balenciaga

POWER OF PRINT Prints of every kind and of all sizes show up in various spring collections, beginning with Balenciaga and its fitted animal print coat with a turned-up collar. Alexander McQueen takes the print trend even further, splattering it across the label’s evening dresses: loose or fitted, demure or revealing, Alexander McQueen dresses shock with a multitude of floral prints in virtually every color imaginable. Over at Burberry, both men and women are treated to a delightful print overdose. For men, there’s a long sleeve shirt in Burberry’s trademark check paired with an animalprint zip-up vest, and for women, looks range from tops and skirts in animal print to a dazzling top that has both colorful floral prints on its front and wild animal print on its sleeves.

London-based brand Alessandra Rich’s designs showcase a more subdued, more casual use of prints. There’s a black-and-white jumpsuit in animal print and a regal black dress with cream-colored polka dots – both ideal for a low-key spring evening celebration. Even hip Italian label Dsquared2 gets into the print spirit, with a purple, orange and black men’s jacket rich with multicolored floral designs.


FRESH AS FRUIT Spring and summer always celebrate color and this year’s no different. In 2019, designers introduced suits in a rainbow of bright colors: it’s the power suit drenched in juicy candy colors.

The traditional suit is transformed into a yellow fantasy at Italy’s MaxMara: it’s cinched at the waist like a dress and worn with matching yellow heels or transformed into an overcoat with its own hood. Loewe’s green take on the suit comes with bold orange paint splashes, while Italian brand Moschino offers up a multicolored suit that’s as pop as an Andy Warhol painting. Moschino also has a glittery disco-inspired tailored suit rich with gold and rainbow-colored lozenges. At Burberry, fruity suiting is also in store for men. The label’s spring suits come in monochrome, soft candy shades, adding a youthful, playful vibe to traditional menswear.

Loewe

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Burberry

Moschino

MaxMara



Words Marwan Naaman

HANDMADE WONDERS

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Buccellati

Delve into Buccellati’s exceptional jewelry


the rigato engraving is the most difficult to achieve. When the task is completed, the bracelet acquires a silky sheen, resembling rare textiles.

Founded in Milan in 1919, Buccellati celebrates its 100th anniversary this year, although the jewelry house uses engraving techniques that are much older, dating back to the Renaissance and handed down through the centuries by Italian craftspeople.

Sometimes it can take up to two years to create a single Buccellati bracelet. Handmade by skilled artisans who study for years in order to perfect their engraving skills, the Italian jeweler’s pieces are unique, each one different from the next, much like a painting by a master would be.

Maria Cristina Picetti, one of Buccellati’s star engravers, was in Lebanon last December to demonstrate the intricacies of the trade to local fans of the brand. At the Buccellati boutique inside the Aïshti store in Downtown Beirut, Picetti worked on a diamond-encrusted Macri bracelet to achieve Buccellati’s signature rigato engraving, in which parallel lines are cut onto the gold piece’s surface to achieve a sheen effect. Holding the bracelet closely in one hand and a tool in the other, she engraved a thin line around one of the encrusted diamonds – an incredibly difficult task because one false move can crack and ruin the diamond. Picetti has been with Buccellati for 15 years, and she explained that it usually takes eight to 10 years of training to learn and perfect the rigato engraving. “You need to draw a straight line and apply similar pressure,” Picetti said, adding that

The current logo of the jewelry house is inspired by the rose window of the Palazzo Ducale in Venice. With that rose window always in mind, Buccellati has created magnificent bracelets, cuffs, rings, necklaces and earrings, all as delicate as lace. Buccellati’s honeycomb-style and tullelike jewelry is also inspired by fashion, with most pieces reflecting a certain trend. In fact, the typical Buccellati customer is usually a woman who has a very strong knowledge of jewelry, understands fine craftsmanship, loves fashion and appreciates art.

THE BUCCELLATI LOGO IS INSPIRED BY THE ROSE WINDOW OF THE PALAZZO DUCALE IN VENICE

And because each Buccellati piece is handmade and unique, it’s possible to tell which of the jewelry house’s craftspeople created it – much like one can recognize the work of a great artist just by looking at one of their paintings.

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Buccellati’s Maria Cristina Picetti demonstrating her engraving skills at Aïshti in Downtown Beirut


148 SAAD ZAGHLOUL STREET, DOWNTOWN BEIRUT / AÏSHTI BY THE SEA, ANTELIAS


Words Tracy Lynn Chemaly Photography Carl Halal

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IN CONVERSATION WITH PAOLA SAKR Her innovative use of materials places her high on the radar of young designers to watch Don’t let Beiruti Paola Sakr’s 23 years of age mislead you into thinking she’s a rookie in the design industry. With a wealth of ideas, talent and chutzpah that some lifelong designers yearn to possess, this creator has already been named a Rising Talent by Paris’ famed Maison&Objet fair, where she presented three works last September, including concrete vases, clay vessels and containers made of coffee grounds and newspaper waste. She was also included in WallpaperSTORE* and House of Today’s recent pop-up, producing über-slick contemporary Mikado sets.

Although a qualified product designer, having graduated with honors from the Académie Libanaise des BeauxArts (ALBA) in 2016, Sakr had originally entered ALBA to study interior design. “I wanted to create environments that would make people feel comfortable,” she explains of the initial decision. “It’s still something I think about all the time.” Such conscious thought is what led her to design tableware for visually impaired people as her final thesis project – a collection equally appealing to those without


impairments – which she hopes to one day take to market. The stainless-steel cutlery set allows people with sight difficulties to enjoy meals autonomously without feeling alienated, giving them the ability to navigate their meals and avoid hand contact with food. Special rims, grips, heat transmitters and direction indicators form part of her prototype considerations. Ideas such as this often come to the designer while watching passersby from the window of her Ashrafieh atelier. “The mix of people makes you think of a lot of different possibilities,” she says. Upon graduating, Sakr began working for lighting company PSLab, honing her technical skills, but was soon approached by Joy Mardini Gallery to produce furniture designs for an upcoming exhibition. Although she pulled off creating three big pieces after-hours, she realized that moonlighting would not be sustainable in the long run and took the leap to open a studio, focusing on her ownname brand.

gives these concrete cylinders a second, more permanent function, as she transforms them into vases, housing flowers that represent the short circle of life. Her work on the Quantum series of vessels led her to delve into pottery, taking classes with Fadi Ksheik at Bkerzay in Deir Dourit. “I paid my respect to the material, but brought my approach to it,” she says of the terracotta and white-clay pieces that were both spun and hand-sculpted, resulting in an aesthetic resembling Brutalist architecture. “I had drawings and specific ideas beforehand,” she says, “but Fadi explained that with pottery you can’t calculate everything. Once you put it in the oven, it can change completely. He said, ‘They’re going to shrink and crack, and aren’t going to be perfect.’ And so I accepted and learned to love the defects because they show the qualities of a material that has a life of its own.”

Coffee has been another of Sakr’s material fascinations. An idea grown from recalling her father reading the newspaper while drinking his morning brew resulted in Morning Ritual, a set of biodegradable containers that brings a unique spin to the idea of repurposing material. By combining coffee grounds and newspaper waste, she’s developed tactile pieces that attract attention through their aroma, as well as their appearance.

Of her innovative approaches to materials, Sakr says: “When you create a new material, you’re the one who knows how it works. You know its limits, and you find ways to push it forward.” Through this continued exploration, Sakr believes her style and methodology will still develop further. “I’m too young to have a design identity currently. Whatever comes to me – in my mind, heart and curiosity – I’ll go with it. For now, I’m enjoying the ride.”

“There’s always a narrative to my work,” Sakr explains. “My medium is my message.” The transparent furniture collection, which now includes a 10-seater glass dining table, is called the Dialogues series, inspired by conversations had either in bedrooms while getting dressed (represented by a minimal clothing rail, mirror and room-dividing screen) or around a meal.

Impermanence, a series of seven predominantly concrete vases, is a story of poetry and emotions – what Sakr describes as her art-and-design hybrid. “While working on these vases, they started resembling Beirut,” she says, “because every vase is so different, like a landscape of the city.” The series was, however, initially propelled by a period of melancholy. “I was thinking about expiration dates, and our attachment to ephemeral things,” Sakr says of her turmoil at the time of creating this work. It was during this period that she walked past a construction site and discovered that the concrete cylinders she admired for their raw perfection were to be discarded after pressure tests. “It reminded me of the things that are forgotten,” she says, illustrating how impermanence

“THERE’S ALWAYS A NARRATIVE TO MY WORK. MY MEDIUM IS MY MESSAGE”

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Words Karim Hussain

DESIGN IN BLOOM FG Stijl’s Colin Finnegan talks about his approach to designing human-centric experiences for mega-brands in locations around the world

FG Stijl, Matsuhisa

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Hyatt Regency Dusseldorf

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Colin Finnegan, born in England, has called Amsterdam home for 25 years and is currently designing interiors in India, Dubai (Palm Jumeirah’s Hyatt Centric), Scotland, Germany and Austria. “Globalization doesn’t mean that the experience of travel should be ubiquitous,” says Finnegan. “It’s through design that I try to make a journey a celebration of the culture I discover in each place.”

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Under company name, FG Stijl, Finnegan’s work in hospitality was born with designs for restaurants in Holland, several of which went on to be awarded Michelin stars after the redesign. FG Stijl was the creation of Finnegan and his then partner Gerard Glintmeijer, who expanded their reach in 2018 with the founding of Glintmeijer Design Studio in Dubai, with Finnegan continuing the work of FG Stijl from the Amsterdam office. Their approach to combining style and comfort at the highest level got them noticed by hotel groups, and their first hotel project – The College Hotel in Amsterdam in 2001 – won the prestigious Hotel Villegiature Award. Since then, the commissions and collaborations have taken Finnegan around the globe. Vienna’s Park Hyatt, Brussels’ The Dominican, Dusseldorf’s Hyatt Regency, Hamburg’s Sir Nikolai, Munich’s Kempinski and Mandarin Oriental, including Matsuhisa, part of the Nobu restaurant empire, are just some of the hotels that Finnegan has transformed into celebrations of hospitality. Non-hotel projects include BMW World in Munich and the flagship Do & Co Vienna, as well as the Summum Private Jet Lounge at Amsterdam’s Schiphol Airport and branches of Nespresso in London. “Throughout the course of a project there are many site visits,” says Finnegan. “Yet the focus is not only on a hotel shell or building site. Rather I take the time to look at what is outside and around, and see how history and people, climate and culture, and geography might have played a part in shaping a place. Then I work to reference these stories through design.” In practice, this means Finnegan is able to utilize the opportunities that a new hotel creates

by ensuring that, wherever possible, the materials and fixtures are locally sourced from artisans or companies whose own history is interwoven with the area. “For the Kempinski hotel in Munich, we are working closely with the 266-year-old Nymphenburg porcelain producers,” says Finnegan. “As the royal manufacturer of porcelain for the Bavarian Court, their dinner services have long been featured on the tables of the Bavarian royal family, who are also very involved with the hotel. It made sense that the hotel should become a platform to showcase the work of this company whose history is so interwoven with its own.” Carlton Hotel Collection’s new Market Street hotel in Edinburgh, due to open in late spring 2019, is also looking forward to sharing local


stories. “The location of this hotel is a stone building, set into the castle rock, where granite and solid stone has been our natural choice for basins, floors and walls,” says Finnegan. “Each room has a different tartan sourced from a local manufacturer who I found on the block – incidentally the Royal Mile – and whose mill is located five stories below the street level retail space. Instead of curtains, you will find oak shutters that close out the city, for cozy nights inside. We are bringing these typically Scottish elements into the fabric of the design so that a visit to the hotel ensures people feel they are living in the location and learning about its history and artisanal crafts.” In India, there are two hotels due to open this year, where many pieces are being ordered from local silversmiths and stonemasons. “Through design, I’ve found that this approach is appreciated first by locals, who are proud of the chance to showcase their own culture and artisans,” says Finnegan. “And then, for the traveler, these elements are nourishing. A hotel is an opportunity to offer a guest the most authentic physical experience. History and culture is presented in bed linen, crockery, fixtures and fittings, decoration and materials. This is how global brands – who are benchmarking service levels – can ensure that their presence keeps local traditions alive and makes them relevant today.” fgstijl.com

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This page: Matsuhisa restaurant at the Mandarin Oriental in Munich (top photo) and The Bank Bar at the Park Hyatt Vienna (above) Opposite page: The Hyatt Regency Dusseldorf’s façade



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7FORALLM AN KI N D.C OM BEIRUT SOUKS, SOUK EL TAWILEH T. 01 99 11 11 EXT: 560 AÏSHTI BY THE SEA, ANTELIAS T. 04 71 77 16 EXT: 263 ALSO AVAILABLE AT ALL AÏZONE STORES IN BEIRUT, DUBAI, AMMAN


ROARING IN RED PHOTOGRAPHY MOHAMAD ABDOUNI

STYLING CHARLES NICOLA

SHOT ON LOCATION IN BEIRUT

The Ferrari Portofino is the new V8 GT, coupé-convertible with a retractable hard top, capable of unleashing a massive 600 cv and sprinting from zero to 100 km/h in just 3.5 seconds.


She’s in a Valentino top and Dior heels


This page: Gianvito Rossi heels Opposite page: She’s in an Alexandre Vauthier dress and Off-White boots




This page and opposite page: She’s in a Dolce & Gabbana top


This page: She’s in a Fendi top, Unravel Project jeans, Dolce & Gabbana scarf and Dolce & Gabbana belt Opposite page: Bottega Veneta bag and Valentino dress



This page: She’s in a Dolce & Gabbana top, Lacroix ski suit, Gucci sunglasses and Gianvito Rossi heels Opposite page: Miu Miu heels




This page: Prada bag Opposite page: She’s in a Dolce & Gabbana top and Lacroix ski suit



This page: Miu Miu bag Opposite page: Valentino top and Dior heels


This page: Fendi bag Opposite page: Dolce & Gabbana top, Oscar de la Renta earrings and vintage turban




This page: She’s in a Fendi top and Oscar de la Renta earrings Opposite page: She’s in a Prada bomber jacket, Balmain dress and Gianvito Rossi heels Model Marta Marczewska at Agents Model Management Hair Edimar Chawiche and Rachad Daccache at Aïshti Spa Makeup Christian Abouhaidar


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Aïshti By the Sea, Antelias, T. 04 71 77 16 ext. 272, Aïzone stores and retail sport shops

L I G H T M O V E S F A S T


PLAYGROUND 213


Urbana 47

47 Via Urbana, urbana47.it Rome’s hip Monti neighborhood is home to Urbana 47, a casual eatery serving local cuisine that’s a cut above the rest. Open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and offering both indoor and street-side seating, the restaurant specializes in typical Italian fare like pizza and pasta, but transformed to reflect contemporary culinary trends. Pizzas are either red or white, meaning that they’re made either with or without tomato sauce. The menu changes monthly, with a different ingredient providing a central theme each month. In November, for instance, the ingredient was pumpkin: the menu featured pasta dishes made with pumpkin and various pizzas with pumpkin toppings. After your meal, be sure to visit Monti’s engaging boutiques, most of which carry locally made (Roman) fashion, home accessories and more. – Marwan Naaman

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SAN FRANCISCO

Angler

132 The Embarcadero, anglerrestaurants.com/san-francisco Shortly after it opened in September 2018 at San Francisco’s Embarcadero, Angler was named best new restaurant in America by Esquire magazine. And with good reason. Helmed by chef Joshua Skenes, who attained global fame with his three-Michelin-starred restaurant Saison set in San Francisco’s South Beach, Angler is a temple to above-par seafood creations that captivate with their refined simplicity. The changing menu include selections from the raw bar, a variety of salads and grilled vegetables and, of course, fresh fish and seafood (such as giant octopus, Monterey abalone, California king crab and more) “simply roasted over the embers.” As he does at Saison, Skenes reaches deep into each ingredient’s essence, resulting in dishes that enchant the taste buds with their sensuality. A fresh new experience. – Niku Kasmai

Bonjwing Lee, Urbana 47

Where We’re Eating

ROME



Catrinas

BEIRUT

Where We’re Eating Armenia Street, Mar Mikhael, facebook.com/catrinas.beirut Catrinas is Beirut’s newest and most festive Mexican restaurant. Located in Mar Mikhael, in the former Memory Lane space, Catrinas serves its own take on Mexican specialties, including such specials as sour coriander dip, mango chicken salad and apricot beef skewers, as well as a variety of fajitas, quesadillas and tacos. Cocktails are divine and include jalapeño margarita, sangria, pasión gusto (vodka, passion fruit and vanilla) and Catrinas mojito (rum with raspberries, pomegranate, mint, lime and soda). Colorful walls, an abundance of plants and Mexicoinspired paintings and illustrations give the spacious restaurant a perennially cheerful vibe. – Michelle Merheb

Catrinas

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Whhere We’re Eating

Words Salma Abdelnour

GOOD THINGS COME TO THOSE WHO WHITE All you need to know about the super-exclusive Dîner en Blanc

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The invitation pops up in my email inbox one rainy New York City morning: “Want to go to Dîner en Blanc next week?” I know my answer. No way. Huge outdoor events packed with massive crowds aren’t my thing. But I don’t automatically hit “send.” Dîner en Blanc events are famous for their gigantic waiting lists, so an invitation is definitely something to consider, at least for more than a half-second. I’ve seen the Instagram pics: thousands of guests wearing all-white and clinking Champagne glasses in front of gorgeously backlit monuments all over the world. After a few minutes and a quick check of the forecast – sunshine next week – my curiosity wins. Will this turn out to be super-cheesy, or kind of fantastic? I delete “No thanks” and type “Yes.” Here’s the thing about Dîner en Blanc: not only are you required to dress in all white, but you also have to bring your own tables, chairs, picnic baskets and tablecloths: white, white, white and

white. The official list of rules is almost comical: “The table must be square, foldable and easy to carry. The size must be between 71 and 81cm.” Also, you have to dress “head to toe in all and only white, and elegant. All white means no ivory, no cream or any other color!” The rules are widely ridiculed, but enough people love the challenge and are game to haul their white-clad selves and furniture, knowing they’re among the few who get to go.

Dîner en Blanc’s origin story is that the first one happened in the summer of 1988, when a bunch of friends in Paris decided to get together for an evening picnic in the Bois de Boulogne. Guests wore white so they could find each other in the giant park. The picnic was such a success that it turned into an annual event. Aymeric Pasquier, whose father Pascal was one of those original Paris picnickers, brought the idea to New York City,


throwing the first Dîner en Blanc there in 2011 with his business partner Sandy Safi, a half-Lebanese entrepreneur based in Montreal. Word about the picturesque pop-up party soon spread, and the pair got flooded with requests from people who wanted to bring the event to their own city. Pasquier and Safi formed Dîner en Blanc International the next year, and now host dinners in 80 cities and counting, at such iconic locations as Sydney’s Opera House and Paris’ Esplanade des Invalides.

Entertainers weave through the tables, dancing in shimmering white outfits, and soon hundreds of guests start heading to a grassy dance floor next to a thumping sound system.

Considering that the waiting list for the 6,500 spots at the latest New York City dinner is hitting around 45,000 by the time I get my invite, I feel lucky to score a spot. As for the all-white outfit, I wonder how mine will fare at a picnic – hello, mud – but I’ll just have to proceed carefully.

She has a point. Of course I’m not one to talk, since I’d managed to get out of carrying my own furniture too. Which is probably a good thing for everyone, considering what happens next: as the rain stops and I walk out of the tent to find my group, the mud plays a little joke on me. I step into the grass and my heel slides out – landing me, white dress and all, right in the dirt. Happily, the crowd is well into its wine by then and distracted by the music, and no one seems to notice. I wrap a white scarf around the enormous mud stain and slowly make my way to the dance floor, the city behind me lit up like a giant disco ball in the sky.

If you manage to get a spot after signing up for the waiting list in your city of choice, you won’t find out the exact location until a few hours before the dinner. There’s nothing like a little secrecy to amp up the mystique, and Dîner en Blanc thrives on mystique. Invitations are first-come first-served – with priority for returning guests – and waiting lists can run into the tens of thousands. Beirut has yet to host an event, but with enough local demand, it could theoretically happen anytime.

A few hours before the dinner, I get a text message revealing the location: Governors Island. The serene, grassy island is a 10-minute ferry ride from Downtown Manhattan and has magical views of the city skyline. I board with my group and we push off into the choppy waters, just as the sun starts sinking on the horizon. Full disclosure: because my crew is mainly journalists and photographers, we’re invited into the media tent for a buffet dinner, so no need to pack our own food or furniture. After a plateful of charcuterie, I leave the tent to roam around and spy on other guests as they set up their tables. The crowd looks to be a dynamic mix of ages, races, gender identities and nationalities – everyone showing up with a personal interpretation of the all-white dress code. I spot more than a few feathery 18th-century-style headpieces, frothy dresses that could star in a reality-show wedding, white pantsuits, white cocktail gowns, dressy white shorts, white tiaras, white hats – lots of hats. At 7:30pm, thousands of guests wave their white napkins. It’s officially dinner time. For the next few hours, guests feast on the picnic dinners they brought and walk around to check out the scene.

I feel a few raindrops. Uh-oh, it’s sprinkling. Knowing my tendency to slip and fall dramatically, I dodge the increasingly muddy dance area and find my way back to the media tent for more Champagne. My timing turns out to be perfect: the event’s co-founder, Sandy Safi, is here, and we sit down for a chat. Safi tells me she got involved with Dîner en Blanc after years of experience organizing concerts and raves for event companies like Peppermint Experience in Dubai. I have to ask: Why is there no Dîner en Blanc in Beirut? A highly Instagrammable, hard-toget-into party like this seems tailor-made for Beirut, no? Well, yes, Safi agrees. Except for one thing: “Can you imagine the Lebanese agreeing to carry their own tables and chairs to a dinner?” she asks with a laugh.

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How We’re Detoxing

THE CURE

Where to go for spa and wellness treatments in Central Europe “Can I come for a spa day?” is a question that will be answered with a blank expression by those in the Czech Republic. For it is here that the natives visit their spas for at least two weeks, if not a month, and it’s usually upon doctor’s orders and therefore with all costs covered by health insurance. Yes, in the Czech Republic, the old expression “I’m taking the cure” is still true, a place where spa treatments are designed to heal serious issues and have long-lasting effects.

For almost a thousand years, the lands today that comprise the Czech Republic have been a destination for those in search of the healing properties of water and earth. In the northwest, where Karlovy Vary is located, the region is known for its mineral springs while further south, in the area that includes Trebon, it is the mud of the peat bogs that attracts health-seekers. For a Czech person, it is quite normal that from time to time in their life, they will be prescribed a visit to one of the many spas, selected to treat ailments that could range from musculoskeletal to dermatological. Fellow guests could be there to address an injury or embark on a program of post-operative physiotherapy. The positive results of treatment haven’t gone unnoticed internationally either: governments such as those of UAE and Saudi Arabia are already sending their citizens to the Czech Republic for treatments that might last from two weeks to two months. Yet as the global popularity toward the benefits of investing in your own wellness are recognized, so the 30 or so Czech spas are offering shorter, targeted visits that can address a range of issues in a tighter time frame. While the experience at each will be very different, the process is similar. Upon arrival you will be assessed by a medical team who will discuss your personal needs and hopes. From this a program of daily treatments will be prescribed. This formula means that several family members could have different experiences: one might be seeking to unwind, so will need more massages, while another wants to achieve increased fitness ensuring that outdoor hiking is on the daily schedule.

Czech Tourism, Ladislav Renner

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Words Karim Hussain


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What makes these destinations distinctive is the combination of unique natural resources, rich history and beautiful landscape: all provide the possibility for relaxation and then each has a unique offering within that.

Marienbad Kur & Spa Hotels in Mariánské Lázne – the biggest spa complex in Central Europe – works with mineral springs, unique natural CO2 gas and peat to improve the physical condition of adults and children. One of the town’s most loyal patrons was King Edward VII, who visited for the first time in 1897. Karlovy Vary, named after Charles IV, Holy Roman Emperor and King of Bohemia, who founded the city in 1370, is historically famous for its hot springs. There are 13 main springs, about 300 smaller springs and the warm-water Teplá River. It has been addressing diabetes, Crohn’s disease and other gastro-related issues by prescribing guests the mineral spring water to drink alongside a schedule of spa treatments.

Jáchymov Spa is the oldest radon spa in the world, offering treatments for nervous and dermatological disorders as well as pain relief, with improvement of quality of life eight to 10 months after the visit.

Lázne Aurora in the picture-perfect Renaissance town of Trebon specializes in treatment of disorders of the locomotor system, rheumatic illnesses and post-injury and post-operative conditions through a series of peat baths and wraps, all harvested from the surrounding region. Whatever ails you, the offering at Czech spas takes a medically sound approach tested over hundreds of years and repackages it for those who wish to address serious issues at some of the most competitive rates in the world – and those who simply seek a relaxing holiday for the entire family. czechtourism.com/a/medical-spas/


Where We’re Detoxing

GRENADA, CARIBBEAN

Silversands

Grenada has long been called “the Spice Isle” of the Caribbean. Grande Anse Beach, silversandsgrenada.com The island is home to several farms, gardens and old wooden processing factories that must be visited. Last December, a new level for luxury destinations was set with the opening of Silversands, whose architecture and interior (by Reda Amalou and Stéphanie Ledoux from AW²) is minimalist, a stunning display of clean lines contrasting against the undulating sands and rugged backdrop of Grand Anse beach. The spa – the best on the isle – is built around a naturally lit, temperature-controlled swimming pool and has four treatment rooms and a sauna, hammam, ice cave, experience shower and high-tech fitness center. The hotel is the place to stay and the spa to play, but save time to explore the island and its tropical wonders. Grenada itself is where the real relaxation will happen, and now there is a beautiful resort from which to experience it all. – Karim Hussain

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ZANZIBAR

Zuri

Unguja, zurizanzibar.com Here, the concept of modern-meets-traditional African design inspired Jestico + Whiles to create Zuri’s bungalow and villa designs. They stocked each space with organic products from the socially conscious Seaweed Center, and placed them in palmshaded gardens. The natural materials used in the architecture underline the sense of a beach-hut hideaway, and to further this effect most terraces feature a hammock. Relaxation is inevitable throughout Zuri resort, in the pools and Jacuzzis, but be sure to book your massages in beach-side cabanas. – Karim Hussain

Silversands, Zuri

If you’re in search of warmer climes, head south of the equator to a private beach on Zanzibar’s island of Unguja.


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NAPA, CALIFORNIA

Where We’re Detoxing 224

CARNEROS RESORT AND SPA

4048 Sonoma Highway, carnerosresort.com The plush makeover includes a new spa entrance, guest reception and retail space, an expanded relaxation area and new treatment rooms and suites. Highlights range from an indoor relaxation area anchored by a fireplace, built-in book shelves and cozy lounge furniture, to a treatment suite for couples featuring a private outdoor deck, soaking tub and solarium shower. One of the California wine country’s most sought-after destinations, the Carneros Resort and Spa offers luxurious cottages set in the Napa countryside, all equipped with luxury amenities, including fireplaces, indoor-outdoor showers, individual hot tubs and French doors leading to landscaped gardens. It’s a true romantic hideaway. – Niku Kasmai

Carneros

The spa at Napa Valley’s luxurious Carneros Resort in Northern California reopened last summer after a $3.5 million renovation.


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The Talbott Hotel

CHICAGO

Where We’re Staying

When it reopened just under two years ago, Chicago’s Talbott Hotel unveiled interiors that were both contemporary and reflective of its nearly 100-year history.

20 East Delaware Place, jdvhotels.com/hotels/illinois/ chicago/talbott-hotel Part of the Joie de Vivre Hotels family, The Talbott was built in 1927, and it has since been a major landmark in Chicago’s glamorous Gold Coast neighborhood. The redesign, helmed by Chicago-based firm Kara Mann Design, was the biggest update in the hotel’s history, and it increased the number of rooms and suites from 149 to 178, while rejuvenating the lobby and meeting spaces and adding a state-of-the-art fitness center. – Niku Kasmai

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Studio Allston, The Talbott

BOSTON

1234 Soldiers Field Road, hotelstudioallston.com The new property offers 117 guestrooms, including 10 suites, and five unique Artist Suites (the Unplug and Play Suite by Maria Molteni is pictured here), with Beekman 1802 bath amenities in every room. A contemporary art theme runs throughout the hotel thanks to the participation of nine local artists who created murals in each of the rooms and infused art across the property. Other amenities include a 24hour fitness center and Wi-Fi throughout the public space. On-site restaurant Casa Caña, which has its own patio, specializes in innovative Latin cuisine and also houses a lively rum bar. – Niku Kasmai

Studio Allston

Steps from Harvard University, Studio Allston Hotel is a hip alternative to Boston’s classic colonial hotels.


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Where We’re Staying

Words Marwan Naaman

A CAPITAL STAY 228

There are many neighborhoods to discover in Washington, DC, most notably Capitol Hill, Dupont Circle, Foggy Bottom and Adams Morgan. Each of these enclaves has its own character and distinctive flair, yet the liveliest of them all is Georgetown, home to elegant and historic townhouses, popular restaurants, lots of shopping, cultural attractions and, of course, the prestigious university. A great place to stay when visiting the American capital is The Graham Georgetown, a boutique hotel that’s part of Hilton’s Tapestry Collection and which offers easy walking access to the engaging neighborhood’s attractions. The Graham first opened in 1962, but has existed in

its current incarnation since 2013, when it reopened after major renovations, increasing the number of rooms and suites from 38 to 57 and adding a fitness center, restaurant and rooftop lounge. The hotel is named after the man who invented the telephone – Alexander Graham Bell – and much like the illustrious man, the hotel is on the cusp of innovation and at the forefront of history.

Located on quiet Thomas Jefferson Street and right around the corner from bustling M Street, The Graham offers its guests respite from the busy city, but at the same time is steps from Georgetown’s many attractions. In fact, two of the neighborhood’s most

The Graham Georgetown

THE GRAHAM IN GEORGETOWN IS BOTH A HIDEAWAY AND AT THE HEART OF IT ALL


coveted spots are at the hotel itself, beginning with The Alex Craft Cocktail Cellar & Speakeasy. Modeled to look like a 1920s speakeasy, The Alex serves artisan cocktails and bar bites, as well as heartier fare. The place also hosts live jazz music sessions. An à la carte breakfast is served at The Alex every morning. Weather permitting, The Graham Rooftop, with its wood decking, couches and glass railings, is the place to see and be seen in Georgetown. A bar and lounge, The Graham Rooftop is a slice of urban heaven, offering dazzling views of DC landmarks, including the Kennedy Center and the Washington Monument. The hotel’s intimate lobby is just as appealing as its rooftop, offering a plush corner with a gas fireplace

and golden chandelier, plus a separate seating area with a comfy sofa. The lobby’s color scheme – grays, whites and dark wood with splashes of red and blue – carries on to the guestrooms and suites. Spacious and modern, the rooms sport gray-checked carpeting, dark wooden desks and off-white headboards, while the bathrooms feature custom Spanish tiles, plus bath amenities from L’Occitane. In addition to free Wi-Fi, the rooms offer the latest Bluetooth USB technology and 42-inch flat-screen TVs. There’s also a small business center adjacent to the lobby for travelers who need printed materials.

To take in the wonders that Georgetown has to offer, step out of The Graham and start walking. Turn left and you end up at the dazzling Washington Waterfront, where attractions exist right along the Potomac River, or turn right and head to M Street and Wisconsin Avenue, both dotted with restaurants and boutiques. The Graham places all of these attractions – and more – right at your fingertips. Visit thegrahamgeorgetown.com

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Words Marwan Naaman

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48 HOURS IN GEORGETOWN UNCOVER THE SECRETS OF DC’S LIVELIEST NEIGHBORHOOD Washington, DC is one of the world’s most fascinating cities. In a tiny space (177 square kilometers), the American capital holds innumerable museums and cultural monuments, restaurants and stores, as well as splendid architectural landmarks. The Georgetown neighborhood, with its undulating streets, ancient homes, namesake university, dozens of stores and enviable setting along the Potomac River, is particularly engaging, and a great place to spend a leisurely couple of days.


House of Sweden

THE GRAHAM Georgetown has a number of hotels in which you could stay, but your best bet is The Graham, a boutique hotel that’s part of Hilton’s Tapestry Collection (see our review on page 228). The intimate property has 57 luxurious rooms and suites, a popular restaurant and a dazzling rooftop bar (open during the warmweather months), and it’s right in the middle of Georgetown, offering a base from which to explore the entire neighborhood on foot.

House of Sweden

CADY’S ALLEY Pedestrian Cady’s Alley, with its narrow cobblestone streets and industrial red-brick buildings, anchors the Georgetown Design District. There are over 20 showrooms and furniture galleries located in this visually pleasing enclave, including Baker, Calligaris, Design Within Reach, Resource Furniture, Bulthaup and more. After touring the various stores, be sure to enjoy apple strudel and a cappuccino at Leopold’s Kafe.

HOUSE OF SWEDEN If you exit The Graham hotel and veer left, a few minutes’ walk will take you to the House of Sweden, set right along the Potomac River. The sleek contemporary structure, launched in 2006, is an architectural marvel, a wood, stone and glass box that appears to float atop a grassy green slope. Home to the Embassy of Sweden, the building also hosts regular exhibits in its Event Center.

TUDOR PLACE A magnificent mansion built in 1816, Tudor Place was once home to descendants of George and Martha Washington and is now a historic landmark. You can take guided tours of the house and view its original furnishings, while learning about the lives of its former inhabitants. You can also visit the sprawling gardens and enjoy views over Georgetown and the rest of DC.

C&O CANAL In between the Potomac River and M Street (Georgetown’s main commercial thoroughfare) lies the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal (C&O Canal), which begins its 300-kilometer route in Washington, DC. Part of a national park, the Georgetown stretch of the canal is ideal for walking, running and cycling along the water and under stately bridges.

OLD STONE HOUSE Steps away, on M Street, stands the Old Stone House, Washington, DC’s oldest structure, built in 1766. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the two-story home is currently closed to visitors, but you can still admire the ancient structure from outside and purchase souvenirs from the ground-floor gift shop.

C&O Canal

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Tudor Place

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Cady’s Alley

DUMBARTON HOUSE Another historic Georgetown home, Dumbarton House was built in 1799, right when the nation’s capital was being transferred to Washington, DC, and is representative of the Federal period’s architectural traditions. Visitors can tour the house and view its antique furnishings and decorative arts collections.

EATING IN GEORGETOWN Georgetown has a wealth of restaurants to sample, offering everything from American, French and Italian to Vietnamese and Thai cuisines. America Eats Tavern, by celebrated chef José Andrés, serves an updated take on traditional American specialties, while Chez

Dumbarton

Tudor Place

Billy Sud cooks up classic French fare in an intimate neighborhood setting. Café Milano is perhaps the bestknown Italian restaurant of the area – it’s been around forever – and it serves a wide selection of pizzas and pastas, while Miss Saigon specializes in Vietnamese cuisine. The Alex – named after Alexander Graham Bell and located inside The Graham hotel – is a craft cocktail cellar and speakeasy serving small plates and international cuisine in a stylish setting. And for a delectable afternoon break, enjoy a specialty gateau at charming Patisserie Poupon.


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What We’re Drinking

Words Tala Habbal

For Goodness Shakes Move over green juice: there’s another health drink taking over

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Every year sees outrageous health trends come and go. First it was tofu, then it was soy. Nut milk replaced regular milk and the coconut, in all its forms, has become a cult-like kitchen staple. Now, protein shakes are replacing juicing as one of the hottest nutrition trends on the health food scene.

Scroll through the Instagram account of any blogger, influencer or celeb these days and you’re sure to come across various well-lit snaps of insanely delicious looking protein shakes. These healthboosting concoctions, packed with ingredients like chlorella, spirulina, maca, matcha, chia seeds, flaxseeds and protein powders in various flavors, have become the drink of choice for healthconscious people. What sets shakes apart is that unlike juicing, where some nutrients are lost, blending the ingredients allows you to reap all of their benefits. Juices are usually also extremely high in sugar. Adding ingredients like almond butter or avocado or coconut oil to shakes helps slow down the sugar absorption from the fruit.

Barry’s Bootcamp, a celeb-frequented fitness chain based in London, serves up a variety of delicious shakes such as the Green Latifah and Matcha Made in Heaven at its popular Fuel Bar. With ingredients like almond butter, granola, cocoa, almond milk and berries, the decadent smoothies are not only jam-packed with nutrients, but taste more indulgent than one would expect of a “healthy” drink. Juice Baby, on London’s King’s Road, is the go-to spot for British “it” girls and socialites who often pop in to grab a Pink Daddy or Iron Man before heading to a nearby yoga class. Ingredients such as hemp seeds provide a boost of natural protein, while spirulina, coconut water and fresh berries deliver even more antioxidant power.

In New York City, health food hotspots like Juice Press and Juice Generation focus on detoxifying ingredients like turmeric and ginger in their bottled juices, while protein shakes such as the Peanut Butter Banana Split and Kale Kolada are the perfect postworkout pick-me-up. The trend has even hit the Middle East with smoothie and shake bars popping up in cities like Dubai and Beirut. Health nuts in Dubai often frequent The Raw Space, and discerning smoothie aficionados in Lebanon get their daily protein shake fix – like Energy Power, filled with peanut butter, coconut milk, chia seeds and dates – at Glow in ABC Dbayeh and Beirut Souks.

Whether you pop into your local trendy juice bar or play around with making your own shake at home, this is certainly one health wave worth riding.


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B018

BEIRUT

LA’s most stylishly artsy cocktail bar is located at the foot of the Hollywood Hills. Ever Bar

1800 Argyle Ave., Hollywood, everlyhotelhollywood.com Part of the Kimpton Everly Hotel, Ever Bar offers inventive takes on classic drinks – Drink Your Vegetables is a margarita with garlic and broccoli, while Steve Mansfield is a Manhattan with St. George coffee liquor and homemade arugula-apple amaro. Ever Bar also serves inventive bar nibbles like Wagyu beef jerky, avocado fries and an asparagus corn dog. With its sleek, film-inspired interiors and engaging view of LA’s historic Capitol Records building, the place offers a setting that’s hard to beat – and nearly impossible to leave. – Niku Kasmai

Kimpton Hotel Group/Wonho Frank Lee, Ieva Saudargaite Douaihi

Karantina, b018.com Launched informally in the 1980s, the club moved to its present location in Karantina in 1998. Housed in an avant-garde underground space complete with retractable roof, and designed by Lebanese architect Bernard Khoury, B018 closed briefly in 2018 and reopened last December with a new, updated look courtesy of Khoury. A major destination for club-goers from across the globe, B018 now boasts a full-fledged restaurant offering modern Asian cuisine. The place is open Wednesday to Saturday, and it still hosts its legendary ‘80s night every Thursday night. And, of course, that stupendous roof still opens and closes to the delight of all revelers. Long live the Beirut night. – Michelle Merheb

LOS ANGELES

Where We’re Drinking 236

B018 is easily Beirut’s most iconic club.


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Words Marwan Naaman

THE LAST PAGE TEENAGE DREAMS Teen dramas are back – but they’re decidedly different. The TV genre first gained popularity in the 1990s, with the debut of Beverly Hills, 90210, which quickly became an international hit. Many other shows followed, including Dawson’s Creek, The O.C. and Gossip Girl, all of them achieving great global success. Seeking to capitalize on the lucrative tween and teen markets, various networks, including The CW and Netflix, are now revisiting the genre. But while previous shows tackled generally shallow issues and seldom went beyond a glossy, glamorous veneer, the new teen dramas are significantly darker, fearlessly exploring the flip side of youth. Take 13 Reasons Why. The Netflix show begins with the suicide of main character Hannah Baker (Katherine Langford), who then proceeds to reveal – from beyond the grave – the 13 reasons why she decided to end her life.

Another Netflix series, the Italian-language Baby, sees its two main characters (Benedetta Porcaroli and Alice Pagani) go from being slightly unhappy schoolgirls to highly paid call girls. 240

Elite, also streaming on Netflix, is set in an exclusive suburb of Madrid and starts off with the killing of a prized pupil (María Pedraza). Much like 13 Reasons Why, the Spanish-language show travels back in time to uncover who killed the beautiful high school student, while examining issues like HIV infection, interracial romance and polyamory.

Then there’s The CW’s Riverdale, based on the classic Archie Comics characters, and which forewent its wholesome past to adopt a noir aesthetic, complete with a student-teacher sexual liaison, prison time and a parent killing their child. Toto, I’ve a feeling we’re not in Kansas anymore.


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