magazine TRAVEL IN STYLE:
HEAR RUBY ROAR:
An Interview With RUBY MODINE
THE WOW FACTOR
DAVIS FACTOR Co-Founder of Smashbox
WEâ€™RE GOING WILD FOR SWIMWEAR
Romantic HOTELS in FRANCE & ITALY
An Interview With
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IN THIS ISSUE
16 CONTRIBUTORS 88 ZODIAC STYLE - The Summer Signs 31 GET THE LOOK - Prized products for skincare and hair 69 LYRICS WE LOVE - La Même ft. Vianney - Maître GIMS 166 RAD APPS - Our favorite apps right now 133 LINKS WE LOVE - Live, Love, Explore with Author, Leon Logothetis of Netflix show, The Kindness Diaries
FASHION + BEAUTY 32 WET Jump in! The water’s WET! Soak up this swim story! 78 LES RUES DE PARIS Regal fashion rules les rues of Paris. 136 GOLDEN HOUR Beautiful model Guetcha rocks golden gowns. How about glows in golden gowns.
ARTICLES + INTERVIEWS
ON THE COVER
TRAVEL IN STYLE:
HEAR RUBY ROAR:
An Interview With RUBY MODINE
THE WOW FACTOR
DAVIS FACTOR Co-Founder of Smashbox
WE’RE GOING WILD FOR SWIMWEAR
Romantic HOTELS in FRANCE & ITALY
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An Interview With
Photographer Ben Cope Wardrobe Stylist Sonia Young Hair Artist Justine Marjan Makeup Artist Elizabeth Castellanos Location Viceroy Beverly Hills VolcomBathing Suit, Stefere Earrings
98 COVER STORY - OLIVIA CULPO Actress, model, and fashion icon of our time, Olivia Culpo shares her story and exciting plans for the future. 18 RUBY MODINE Hear Ruby roar: An Interview with Ruby Modine. 114 THE WOW FACTOR An interview with Smashbox Studios and Cosmetics CoFounder, Davis Factor. 124 BRYCE SCARLETT Hair artist Bryce Scarlett on balance, beauty, and travel. 148 JAMEE NATELLA Founder of multimedia production company, producer, activist, world traveler, mother, and author, Jamee Natella is a dynamic wonder woman. 160 STEVE WEISSMAN NFL Network and Tennis Channel sportscaster Steve Weissman discusses career choices, focus, determination, and his sweet LA lifestyle.
28 VICEROY Lâ€™ERMITAG: ONE OF A KIND Accolades for its atmosphere and accommodations. 48 VENTURE TO VENICE Party, shop, and soak up the culture. 56 SAN CLEMENTE PALACE: FROM REAL LIFE TO PARADISE Located on a private island in the Venetian Lagoon in Italy, this hotel will transport you to paradise. 62 HOT SPOTS: IN THE CITIES OF LIGHTS & LOVE Six hot restaurants to put on your list for trips to Paris and Venice. 70 GET THE TRIP: ROMANTIC GETAWAYS Dream destinations: six romantic hotels in France and Italy. 92 ALDER THERMAE: HERE IS WHERE YOU HEAL Pamper your body and mind at this spa and resort in the rolling hills of Tuscany. 110 MAISON BREGUET: GET INSPIRED Maison Breguet is the place for travelers who love culture, fashion, and adventures from all over the world. 130 CHARMING HOUSE: LIVE LIKE A LOCAL Immerse yourself in the Ventian culture at this luxurious, apartment-style hotel. 134 HOTEL DE NELL: MODERN LUXURY Hotel de Nell is the ideal modern getaway for those travelers with a franco-japonais luxe minimalistic style sense. 158 CHATEAU BRIAND: YOUR HOME AWAY FROM HOME Located in the heart of Paris, Chateau Briand is the perfect place to unwind. 142 TRAVEL GUIDE: PUERTO VALLARTA The best places to stay, eat and explore in Puerto Vallarta.
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TRACY KAHN Editor in Chief, Creative Director & Photographer @tracykahn
MADELINE ROSENE Senior Editor @madelinerosene
BEN SHANI Videographer @benshaniproductions
RILEY YAHR Art Director @rileyyahr
THIS ISSUE’S CONTRIBUTORS
JEFFREY FOUNTAIN Videographer @jeffreyfuente
BEN COPE Photographer @ben_cope
COURTNEY SNYDER Editorial Intern & Writer @csnydzzz
TIZIANO LUGLI Photographer @tizianolugli APEKSHA AGARWAL Photographer @apekshaphotography CRISTEN STEFANELLI Wardrobe Stylist @cestyle DESIREE MORALES Wardrobe Stylist @desireemorales DOMINIQUE BISSON Wardrobe Stylist @dominiquebisson
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JASON EDWARD Videographer @jasonedwardcreative
SAMANTHA ALBERT Editorial Intern @sammyykins
JAYE YOUNKIN Editorial Assistant & Writer @jayemary
TARYN JADE ROSTOVSKY Editorial Intern @tarynnnnjadeeee
JULIANNE ZIGOS Brand Liaison/ Advertorial Director @juliedee59
HEATHER DEVINE Editorial Intern @heatherdevine21
ASHLEY BARNES Assistant Stylist @ashfaithstyle
PAULINE BRUNEL Hair Artist @paulinebrunel
ELIZABETH CASTELLANOS Makeup Artist @makeupbyliz
SOAREE COHEN Wardrobe Stylist @soaree
JUSTINE MARJAN Hair Artist @justinemarjan
SARAH HUGGINS Groomer @mr.sarah
J ZILKEN Hair Artist @hairbyjzilken
NEO TONY LEE Producer & Videographer @neotonylee
MERAV ADLER Makeup Artist @makeupbymerav
SONIA YOUNG Wardrobe Stylist @soniayoungstyle
HAYLEY HECKMANN Hair Artist’s Assistant
AZAMI Makeup Artist @azami.azami.azami
DANIEL GALVIN Director @danny.g_photography
HANNAH LEWIS Stylist’s Assistant @hannahmeow_meow
TIFFANY SCOTT Wardrobe Stylist @tgatiffanystylist KENDALL COTTA Hair & Makeup Artist @kendellcotta MELISSA BEDI Hair & Makeup Artist @hmubymelbe FALLON TONI CHAVEZ Hair Artist @tonichavezhair
GARRET GERVAIS Makeup Artist @gtgervais
RUTVIK KATURI Digital Tech & Retoucher @rutvikkaturi BRAYDEN SCHRADER Assistant @brayden_schrader LUCAS ARCHIER Assistant @lucas.a_photos
*Number of followers taken at date of publication
the S T A R S
OLIVIA CULPO Model & Actress @oliviaculpo 3m followers
ANNA HERRIN Model @annaherrin 188k followers
BRYCE SCARLETT Hair Artist @brycescarlett 63.4k followers
MYRTILLE REVEMONT Model @myrtille_revemont 43.8k followers
GUETCHA TONDREAU Model @guetcha 30.8k followers
JAMEE NATELLA Film Producer 2k @jameenatella followers
RUBY MODINE Actress @rubymodine 145k followers
DAVIS FACTOR Chief Creative Director of Smashbox @davisfactor 22k followers
STEVE WEISSMAN Sportscaster @steveweissman 8k followers
Connect with us! VOLUME 10
magazine TRAVEL IN STYLE:
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HEAR RUBY ROAR:
An Interview With RUBY MODINE
THE WOW FACTOR
DAVIS FACTOR Co-Founder of Smashbox
WE’RE GOING WILD FOR SWIMWEAR
Romantic HOTELS in FRANCE & ITALY
An Interview With
firstname.lastname@example.org | www.lefairmag.com
@LEFAIRMAG L E FA I R MA G A Z I NE | 1 7
Ruby Modine @rubymodine Writer Jaye Younkin @jayemary Photographer Tiziano Lugli @tizianolugli Wardrobe Stylist Soaree Cohen @soaree Makeup Artist Merav Adler @makeupbymerav Hair Artist Fallon Toni Chavez @tonichavezhair
assy, confident, independent, and exotic describe Ruby Modine, a vivacious actress known best for her role as Sierra in Showtimeâ€™s hit TV series Shameless. She is much the same in person, with a hint of familiarity she gets from her father, actor Matthew Modine (now in Netflixâ€™s Stranger Things), a contagious laugh, and a unique positivity that radiates to everyone in her path. Her creativity expands beyond the small screen to film projects, and soon her own EP.
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JY: What was life like for you growing up as the daughter of actor Matthew Modine and Caridad Rivera? RM: It was filled with lots of laughter and art. We have a very family-oriented lifestyle to this day because of the upbringing that was given to us (Boman [my brother] and me). I’m lucky to have had such a great and adventurous childhood. JY: Is there a specific moment you remember deciding that you wanted to pursue acting? RM: I was on set of one of my Dad’s films when I was very little and I remember seeing him step out in his costume. It was like the reaction in comic books when the hero steps forward for the first time — jaw dropping and so magical. Then to watch him in the scenes with his fellow actors... I was mesmerized! JY: Were you ever interested in possibly pursuing a career outside of the entertainment industry? RM: I wanted to be a chef when I was young, but even when I was cooking I’d be striking poses and acting like I was in front of a camera. I had a good number of jobs prior to acting. JY: What can your fans look forward to in the future from your singing career? RM: A lot of truth. I’m absolutely over the moon and so overjoyed to be working on my EP with my long-time friend Zachary Murdock (@channelthesun). There will be new sounds, honesty, music videos, live performances, etc! #RubyModineAndTheDisease #ChannelTheSun JY: When you write original music, what emotions are you drawn to expressing? RM: Personal experiences are the most prominent. I write about relationships and life experiences that have affected me in big ways both positively and negatively. I used to hold back on my lyrics but as I’ve gotten older, I feel so much stronger and more clear minded. I want to share my true stories. It’s so much easier to breathe when we lose fear and find self-love.
JY: What is the writing process like for you? RM: Writing has always been therapeutic for me and I’ve had journals throughout my life. My parents really encouraged that, so my music mostly stems from those. I’m always jotting down notes for a song or poem in the works. I’ve woken up from dreams and grabbed my pen and paper which have a permanent home next to my bed, and then fallen back to sleep smiling super big. JY: Has there ever been a specific time in your life when you felt like music was really there for you? RM: Yes, I always feel like I can breathe better once I’ve gotten everything off my chest. It’s like being released from emotional claustrophobia. JY: How can your fans see you perform live? RM: I will make sure to always share dates and times on my social media! I’ve done a few impromptu shows but that’s just me jumping on stage to sing along with a friend’s band or performers who I know. JY: Do you play any instruments? RM: I’m getting back into playing piano. I played for nine years and then stopped to focus purely on singing which wasn’t a wise choice! I can play around with almost all instruments other than drums; I have never been able to play drums!
I used to hold back on my lyrics but as I’ve gotten older, I feel so much stronger and more clear minded.
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Itâ€™s so much easier to breathe when we lose fear and find
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No one can make you want to get better, you need to want to do it yourself. I did and do work every day to be the best version of me. JY: Sometimes it can be difficult maintaining self-love. Explain your relationship right now with yourself and how you got there. RM: I took serious action one day because I didn’t like some small, bad habits that were present in my life. It took a lot of hard work and time for me to become as happy and healthy as I am now. I still have my off-days but I practice positive affirmations every day which have helped me become much more centered. Instead of disappearing down a rabbit hole of self-loathing and destructive behaviors, I focus on deep breaths and realizing that the moment is going to pass. No one can make you want to get better, you need to want to do it yourself. I did and do work every day to be the best version of me.
JY: You’re well known for your role as Sierra on the television show Shameless. What was it like working with that cast? RM: It was fun and very educational. It was a blessing to be in the midst of such great actors and learn something different from each of them. I’m happy to have had that experience because it was a dream come true. JY: Your character Sierra is a young single parent dealing with the stress from her inconsistent baby daddy. How did you connect to her character? RM: Sierra Morton is such a strong woman and I saw pieces of myself in her. She knows what she wants and is willing to work hard to get there. She’s someone who loves those around her and protects them any way she deems fit. She has battled through difficult experiences and strives to do her best. JY: For all those “Lip” girls out there— what was it like kissing this character played by Jeremy Allen White? RM: It’s a stage kiss so it felt like acting (laughs). Jeremy is a brilliant actor but also a very kind and professional human being. He makes his co-stars feel safe and comfortable; for that I am blessed to have worked alongside him. JY: A lot of your scenes required nudity. Did you tell anyone they weren’t allowed to watch those episodes? RM: My parents and brother.
JY: In regard to the #metoo movement, was there ever a moment while you were working that you felt inequality, sexism or inappropriate behavior from a man? RM: Yes, I have. I was much younger and didn’t know what to do or how to react; I was scared and didn’t want to cause drama or get people involved. In a way, I thought it was my own fault. You can best believe that will never be the case again. I have found my voice and am stronger now. The very last time it happened, I spoke up against him and took action. We all must remember to protect ourselves and protect those who don’t feel they have a voice.
JY: What’re your thoughts about how one of the most popular on-screen couples, Ian Gallagher and Mickey Milkovich, ended their intense relationship? RM: I’m still trying to figure out if Ian is going to make his way to Mexico! JY: In 2017 we also saw you in Happy Death Day, a slasher film, playing Lori. Can we expect a Happy Death Day 2 in the future? RM: From what I know, indeed you can.
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JY: What can you tell us about the new projects you’ve been working on? RM: I am about to go into filming for an independent film called American Desert directed by Adrian Bartol. It is a story about a military vet (Will Brandt) who has PTSD and meets a small-town girl who lives in the desert. I am also putting in lots of studio time for my EP! (#RubyModineAndTheDisease #Blue13) JY: What would you say to your younger self or to young girls trying to break into the industry about dealing with rejection? RM: I would tell myself to care less about what other people think. Rejection doesn’t mean it’s over. You can learn something from that experience and use it as fuel to work harder. JY: What is your best beauty tip for summer weather?
stopped and held accountable for the pain and agony they have caused. The only way that is going to happen is if we all stand strong together and everything and do anything we can. We must stand together and help those who cannot help themselves. JY: Describe the first memory that comes to your mind when you hear the word “love.” RM: I think of my parents, Boman, and I sitting on our back porch in Millbrook with our dog Decaf during a huge storm. The sky was green and it was raining so hard you could barely see the trees in the distance. My mom was sat on my dad’s lap, Boman drew on a big sheet of paper, my dog happily snored and I ran/danced in the rain. JY: What’s the best thing about being a Leo zodiac sign? RM: I can roar really loudly and get away with it.
RM: Definitely lots of sunblock and water! JY: As someone of European, Spanish, and African ethnicity, what do you have to say about the current discrimination our country is facing? RM: There is so much to be said in regard to what is happening in our country. It’s heartbreaking, despicable, unacceptable, horrifying...The people who are to blame for this horror have to be
JY: You turned 28 at the end of July. What do you hope this new age brings you? RM: Another year similar to this one but on a higher plane! 27 was such a great year for me. I learned so much about myself, and the relationships with my loved ones became so much stronger. I hope to continue this adventure and find more greatness within myself and the world around me. ■
We must and help those who cannot help themselves.
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ONE of aKIND
Writer Julianne Zigos @juliedee59 Photos Courtesy of Viceroy L’Ermitage Beverly Hills
ince 2010 Viceroy L’Ermitage Beverly Hills has been the epitome of luxury lodging. Boasting the largest rooms in Beverly Hills, the hotel is comprised totally of suitestyle accommodations, therefore living up to its name, l’ermitage, meaning a secluded residence or private retreat; hideaway. One hundred and sixteen suites in total, each one is complete with a private balcony promising views of either Hollywood or Beverly Hills. Secluded and residential it is. Situated on a tree-lined neighborhood block among affluent apartments and million dollar mini-mansions it’s less than a mile away from the action on Rodeo Drive. Traveling sans wheels? The Viceroy L’Ermitage Beverly Hills has you covered, offering on-call house Mercedes to shuttle you to your choice of the many local designer boutiques, museums, and restaurants.
Immediately upon arrival, we feel right at home. And that’s the intention. L’Ermitage has recently undergone and completed a $50 million dollar renovation courtesy of Smith-Firestone Associates (SFA). Along with updates to the décor or the rooms, lounges, and restaurant one of the main objectives was to create a lobby that wasn’t — an entryway that made guests feel like they had arrived at their home away from home rather than like checking in at another swanky, yet impersonal hotel. “The lobby vibe is that it isn’t a lobby,” says Kara Smith president of SFA. “It feels perfect for a long stay.” The color scheme for the redesign is downright regal. Neutral hues are tranquil yet elevated, brushed in gold and silver from the walls to
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the carpeting with matching metallic upholstery and lustrous leather and velvet coverings. Bold accents of royal blue and dark chocolate create rich contrast throughout the corporate areas of the residence. “Our intent was to create a series of unique settings that celebrate the individuality and personalities of L’Ermitage’s guests,” said Smith. All the glitz and glamour nods to vintage Hollywood, and we can easily see how this tranquil retreat became a celebrity haven. “Beverly Hills is a destination that is one of a kind and Viceroy L’Ermitage is a hotel within that destination that is equally one of a kind. To stand out amongst the quality of competition that we face it was important that the approach to the design in this hotel was truly individual,” says Bill Walshe, Chief Executive Officer of the Viceroy Hotel Group of the redesign, revealed in 2016. “This renovation, the refurbishment, and the re-launch has truly been a labor of love. The memories that our guests’ generate at this hotel are one-off, bespoke, couture memories that will last for a lifetime.” One of our favorite luxury settings is the rooftop pool, featuring 360-degree views of Beverly Hills and private cabanas to enjoy a massage or cocktails in the shade. The amenities don’t stop there. Guests can also make a toast with welcome glass of bubbly upon arrival or relax and rejuvenate with complementary yoga on Saturdays. Can’t bear to part with your pooch? L’Ermitage is highly pet friendly, offering a Canine Club that includes treats, dog walking services, and a custom Viceroy dog bed, leash, food and water bowls en suite. There is a fee, but L’Ermitage Beverly Hills will donate 50% of it to local adoption center, Wags & Walks.
The boutique property offers unrivaled intimate and personalized service. For example, say you have a very particular request like requiring your room temperature be set at a crisp 68-degrees. L’Ermitage will not only ensure that your request is met, but also noted so that your room is chilled to your liking when you arrive for your decided future stays. The staff meets daily to discuss guest preferences and how they can go above and beyond their guests’ last experience. It’s these details that have earned Viceroy L’Ermitage multiple Forbes Five Star Hotel and AAA Five Diamond Hotel awards many consecutive years in a row. Speaking of accolades… L’Ermitage Beverly Hills’ most brag-worthy award today might be landing the number one spot on Travel + Leisure’s 2018 reader-selected Top 10 City Hotels in Greater Los Angeles that debuted last month. L’Ermitage is eager to celebrate with their loyal patrons offering savings on two nights or more, complimentary bottles of champagne, and, the ultimate luxury, late check out until December 30, 2018. L E FA I R MA G A Z I NE | 2 9
L’Ermitage Beverly Hills employs some of the best staff in Los Angeles, whose attention to customer service and guest relations is unparalleled. “Service starts with guest needs innovatively anticipated, then uniquely accommodated. Warmth is a given, discretion an essential,” says Viceroy of its intuitive service. In fact, Viceroy is on the cutting edge of hospitality. The group will be the first to test a new smartwatch hotel management solution by Samsung and ALICE, a hotel operations platform. The technology will improve communication and one up Viceroy’s seemingly flawless service beginning with L’Ermitage this summer. We’re here to shoot our summer cover star, Olivia Culpo, on a balmy afternoon during mid-August in Los Angeles. Our experience wasn’t met with anything less than excellence. We began setting up in a Viceroy Junior suite. While even the most conservative of suites start at 700-square feet, we were hard pressed for space to fit our wardrobe, equipment, lighting, hair and makeup, photographer, videographer, and editorial teams. “Ask and you shall receive” proved to be the motto on the property when we were quickly afforded an additional suite for our use. Just like that we had ample room to roll in our racks, cover the countertops with accessories, and offer Culpo’s entourage a place to relax while we got to work creating the ultimate glamour shots of our star in her gilded hideaway. Guests can even mimic our Hollywood experience by arranging in-suite hair, makeup, and nail services during their stay. We shot Culpo in the “ultimate
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dressing space” as Smith calls it, a gorgeous vanity area that allowed us to create stunning images of our model as reflected in the full-length three-way mirror. Even the closet features a bespoke layout with designated spaces measured to fit sky-high stilettos. Elements like these bring the extravagance of personal shopping experiences found on Rodeo Drive inside the hotel to be enjoyed from the comfort of an intimate suite. No trip to Viceroy L’Ermitage Beverly Hills would be complete without dining in Avec Nous, the modern French brasserie open to guests and locals alike. Executive Chef Olivier Quignon adapts the menu to the local lifestyle fusing iconic Southern French dishes with farm-fresh California ingredients. Guests will always find seasonal favorites on the menu, like summer’s refreshing chilled watermelon soup. Avec Nous is award winning in its own right, gaining a Wine Spectator “2018 Best of Award of Excellence” distinction. During our shoot, we indulged in the menu’s most savory side item: Truffle Fries, which we think should be given their own award as the World’s Most Posh Snack. It seems as if each of the Viceroy L’Ermitage Beverly Hills’ eight floors has something unique to offer. From the welcoming entryway to the rooftop pool deck under the stars, its engaging atmosphere and staff trained in superiority, this relaxing refuge is shrouded from top to bottom in low-key, high-designed elegance where guests become the kings and queens of this castle. ■
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WET Photographer Tracy Kahn @tracykahn Model Anna Herrin @annaherrin Wardrobe Stylist Madeline Rosene @madelinerosene Assistant Stylist Courtney Snyder @csnydzzz Hair Artist J Zilken @hairbyjzilken Makeup Artist Garret Gervais @gtgervais Videographer Jason Edward @jasonedwardcreative
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VENTURE to VENICE Photographer Tracy Kahn @tracykahn Writer Madeline Rosene @madelinerosene
here’s a scene in Walt Disney’s Mary Poppins when the characters jump into vibrantly colored chalk drawings on the street. This trippy fantasy is akin to the feeling of visiting Venice, Italy, when you might feel like you’ve jumped into a painting. From the architecture of the buildings to the personalities of the locals, Venice is a colorful city. Often referred to as The City of Love, Venice naturally brings people together both physically, through its close quartered maze of streets that force people to walk side by side, arms brushing against arms, and often communicatively when needing directions, due to common reception failures. In our Winter 2016 issue, we explored Venice as an endangered city so, if visiting this city is not on your bucket list, you might want to add it. LEFAIR Magazine ventured to Venice this summer. Discover five travel musts while you’re visiting Venice!
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1. Venice Summer Events
June 2nd is a national holiday for Republic Day, similar to Independence Day in the US and other countries. It celebrates the official formation of the Republic of Italy after World War II. Small festivals, concerts, and parades are held throughout Italy. Art Night Venezia, in late June, consists of museums, foundations, galleries, bookstores and cinemas, staying open late to offer visitors guided tours of exhibitions and churches, and concerts. What could be more romantic than fireworks in Venice? July’s biggest festival, Festa del Redentore, is held the third Sunday of July commemorating the end of the plague in 1576. Events take place at the Palladio-designed Redentore church in Giudecca. Ferragosto begins August 15th. It is an ancient Roman holiday called Feriae Augusti. This term refers to the holiday season proclaimed by the Roman emperor Augustus in the year 18 BC. On Ferragosto, and during this month, there are outdoor concerts, movies and of course, the famous Venice Film Festival usually starts at the end August.
2. Get Your Gondola On
During your stay on the island of Venice, you will not have the option to call an Uber or Taxi. The streets are narrow and locals and tourists travel by foot or by boat. The Venetian lagoon is an enclosed bay of the Adriatic Sea. When you need a break from the crowded summer streets of Venice, a gondola is often the answer to transportation. Often lagoon-side hotels and restaurants are made gondola accessible with stairs leading to the water. Cruise through the Grand Canal and small waterways. Traveling by gondola also allows you to skip the lines at Saint Mark’s Basilica and the Doge’s Palace. You know the look — a tall thin man in a black and white striped long sleeve t-shirt facing the bow rows with a forward stroke, followed by a compensating backward stroke. Gondolas are similar to canoes but narrower, and are traditional flat-bottomed Venetian row boats. There are approximately 400 licensed gondoliers in Venice. Gondolas are sometimes elaborately and exquisitely decorated, with bright blue velvet seats and gold trim. Some even have accordion players for hire, ready to serenade you and your sweetheart (un canto Veneziano?) It’s close quarters in a gondola so be ready to get cozy. Of course, if Gondolas aren’t really your speed, there are always water taxis. 5 0 | L E FA I R MAG AZI NE
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Venice has to be one of the most underrated shopping destinations. When it comes to luxury shopping or finding a deal, you can find both on the floating city. Just two years ago, Venice opened its first luxury shopping center, T Fondaco dei Tedeschi by DFS. Built first in 1228 as Fondaco dei Tedeschi, located at the foot of the Rialto Bridge, it is one of Venice’s most recognizable buildings, historically used as a merchant trading post, a customs house under Napoleon, and a post office under Mussolini. Thanks to the LVMH world-leading luxury travel retailer, DFS, known for curating selections from exceptional desired brands through 420 boutiques on four continents, this famous landmark is now a shopping mecca for tourists from all over the globe. Sometimes referred to as the “Harrods of Venice,” DFS did wonders in selecting some of Italy’s finest designers including Armani, Fendi, Max Mara, Valentino, Bottega Veneta, and Gucci. Don’t forget to dine in at AMO, the culinary creation of Raf and Max Alajmo, of the Alajmo family, proprietor of three Michelin star Padua, Italy restaurant, Le Calandre. If you are looking to invest in quality designer staples but don’t want to spend time inside a shopping center, check out the following high-end shopping streets: Salizada San Moisè, located just a short walk away from the central Piazza San Marco, where you’ll find those pronounced Etro prints; Calle Larga XXII, near Piazza San Marco, lined with both Italian and international designer boutiques like Bulgari, Salvatore Ferragamo, Tod’s and Burberry; or Le Mercurie, a series of streets located between the Ponte di Rialto bridge and Piazza San Marco. One of the best parts of shopping in Venice is discovering the small, lesser-known gems. On our journey, we happened upon Gualti, designer Gualtiero Salbego’s studiogallery. The space is a sensory sanctuary with dresses made of reflective mermaid skinlike materials, organza, taffeta, or satin, cocoon-shaped scarves spiraling down from the ceiling. We’re looking forward to including Gualti pieces in our editorials in the future. Finally, if you happen upon any small leather goods or shoe stores that carry a shoe brand called “DONNA IN MEMORY,” buy the shoes. These highly affordable, impossible-tofind-on-Google Italian shoes are made of exquisite leather. Their gladiator sandals will last even after running through a Venice torrential downpour for twenty minutes.
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“Art is like a rainbow, infinitely fascinating.” -STEFANO CONTINI
Whether you’re a long-time art collector, beginning a collection, or just looking, there’s a lot to look at in Venice, Italy. S.a.L.E Docks: this underground subversive contemporary space for artists began in 2007. Run by students, artists, art industry professionals, and cultural workers, the space is used to facilitate collaborations between local artists and students and develop projects with international art agents and artists. SaLE organizes seminars, exhibitions, workshops and is located at Magazzini del Sale, Dorsoduro 265, near Punta della Dogana, Venice. It is open during exhibitions, from Thursday to Sunday, from 2:00 to 7:00PM. Situated near the Peggy Guggenheim Collection, the young gallery Punta della Dogana is inside the 17th century warehouses at the Punta, located between the Grand and Giudecca Canals at the tip of an island in the Dorsoduro district, adjacent to the Dogana da Mar, Patriarchal Seminary, and Santa Maria della Salute. It’s diagonal from the Piazza San Marco. The point was first used for docking and customs as early as the beginning of the 15th century. However, this structure had long been neglected before it was auctioned off in the early 2000s to French billionaire businessman, art collector, Francois Pinault whose collection with works by the likes of Albert Oehlen, Cindy Sherman, and Rudolf Stingel are currently on display. A mix of modern, contemporary, and, since 2004, photography, the Bugno Art Gallery opened in 1991 in front of La Fenice Theater in Venice. This white, spacious gallery is beautifully lit with floor-to-ceiling windows. Bugno has displayed works by artists such as Joseph Beuys, Alighieri Boetti, Piero Dorazio, Ben Vautier, Arnaldo Pomodoro, Nicola De Maria, Mario Schifano, Giuseppe Santomaso, Emilio Vedova, and Edmondo Bacci. With four galleries between Venice and Cortina D’ampezzo, 40 years of experience and over 1,000 square meters of exhibition space, Contini Galleria D’Arte, houses a vast and superior collection of national and international artists including Manolo Valdés, Igor Mitoraj, Robert Indiana, Fernando Botero, Zoran Music and Julio Larraz as well as a few emerging Italian painters such as Enzo Fiore, Mario Arlati and Carla Tolomeo. The most prominent found is located in Venice, within a five-story building. Art collectors are invited to be part of the prestigious, exclusive, CONTINI CLUB, that provides direct contact with its roster of artists. ■ 5 4 | L E FA I R MAG AZI NE
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SAN CLEMENTE PALACE: FROM REAL LIFE TO PARADISE
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Photographer Tracy Kahn @tracykahn Writers Courtney Snyder @csnydzzz & Madeline Rosene @madelinerosene
ocated on the private island, Isola de San Clemente (San Clemente Island) in the Venetian Lagoon in Italy, just off of San Marco in Venice, Italy, is Kempinski San Clemente Palace. The words “private island” and “palace” should already be a good indication of the experience this fivestar hotel offers. Kempinski is Europe’s oldest luxury hotel group and believes that life should be lived with style. The hotel’s elegance and exclusivity evidenced by the very first introduction to the hotel: a private small wooden lanta boat, arriving every thirty minutes or so, that guests take from San Marco Square to reach the hidden destination. This resort transports you from real life to paradise.
Part of the magic of a true vacation is derived from putting yourself in surroundings so unlike your usual environment that you feel like you have escaped the mundane. Routine and our ordinary day-to-day make it easy to forget to expand your horizons and engage in self-exploration. When we travel and shake up this routine, more than ever, we feel free to be who we are or who we want to be. Kempinski San Clemente allows you to transpire yourself to feel like an heiress, fall in love with someone or something new (even if just for a few days). Unless you already live on a private island in a monastery-turnedhotel, it should be very easy to feel liberated in this entirely new, out-of-the-ordinary setting. Making our way around the island, the hotel, an expansive structure with 190 rooms, is visible immediately, its rustcolored exterior, white transoms, and high three-part windows radiating venetian style. The walk from the dock to the hotel is nothing less than cinematic, through sprawling gardens, the tall shrubbery lines the walkways. There is an outdoor romantic nook around every turn and classic wicker furniture to sit comfortably or sunbathe. Upon reaching the grand entrance, youâ€™ll notice the Romanesque vision detailed through the staircase, old fashioned wooden railing, regal red carpet and tiered crystal chandelier that sparkles from the windows and reflects light to every corner of the room. As royal and breathtaking as this entrance is, the staff enhances this formal atmosphere through their amiableness and down-to-earth pleasantries. L E FA I R MA G A Z I NE | 5 7
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Alessia the “Lady in Red,” something only Kempinski Hotels have, is the equivalent to a Guest Relations Assistant. She takes care of her guests’ requests and is dressed in red patent leather heels and a classic A-line dress. Alessia guided us to our rooms, her heels clicking against the marble. It’s Alessia’s first season at the hotel and she knows the entire history of the property. A seasoned traveler herself, Alessia immediately greeted us with grace and informed us with exquisite detail on the hotel and island. Between the 15th and 16th centuries, San Clemente became prominent for being “the gateway to Venice.” Captured from the writing of Venice in 1493, the famous Marino Sanudo described the Bucentaur as “a marvel, in which the Prince and Senate go to any great lord visiting the city; they go to San Clemente or elsewhere, depending on the direction from which the visitor is coming” Eventually, the buildings on the private island were transformed into a luxurious hotel — now newly managed by the Kempinski group. The island and building was used in the 12th century as a monastery, smaller than this back then. After that, it became the home of the Lord of Venice where he hosted his special guests — giving the hotel a very significant and historical background. The hotel’s occupancy is high because there are three restaurants, a bar, fitness center, spa, pool, and boutique on site (with some of the cutest resort wear our team has seen). Any one location on site is rarely crowded, offering guests plenty of private time with their traveling companions. Make no mistake, the hotel is large and it may take a day or two to get familiar with the layout and the grounds. Our team and several other guests experienced issues with their key cards
during the stay causing quite a bit of up and down. Hopefully this is something the hotel will fix in the future. As far as cuisine goes, our recommendation is to go straight to Acquerello, located in the churchyard on a large terrace. Enjoy views of the lagoon, flickering candlelight, and the sky at sunset, surreal and seemingly stolen from a painting. The Italian-Mediterranean fusion restaurant’s menu changes every Friday with new creative cuisines. From hamburgers made from prawns and smoked egg spaghetti marinated inside a pig’s bladder (en vessie) to deconstructed tiramisu and a delightfully gelatinous rhubarb mousse with a house-made jam garnish, here you will find dishes you’ve never experienced. Don’t hesitate to ask for recommendations from the highly knowledgeable wait staff. If you’re lucky enough to be served by Elio, whose background as a sommelier and experience serving at the Gritti Palace, Rome Grand Hotel, New York St. Regis, and The Savoy show his ingrained passion and love for gastronomy — you will be guided to the best service and recommendations in all of Venice. If you are considering a destination wedding, San Clemente Kempinski seems to have been designed for this very purpose, sacred in its beginnings and its spiritual essence provide the perfect place to pronounce a new marriage. Its magnificence and charm will assure you to experience the most magical day of your life. Overall, there is nothing that we would not recommend to anyone about our experience at San Clemente Kempinski. Staying here stimulated relaxation but also creativity that you do not normally feel on your everyday routine. ■
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SAN CLEMENTE PALACE
Videographer Jeffrey Fountain @jeffreyfuente 6 0 | L E FA I R MAG AZI NE
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HOT SPOTS In The Cities of Lights & Love
I. BISTROT DE VENISE Classical music plays throughout the rooms. Bistrot de Venise owner, Sergio Fragiacomo wears bright blue pants, matching loafers and a white button down. He welcomes us at the door. The bartender pours three glasses of Prosecco. “It’s the Venetian way to start a meal,” Fragiacomo says. With around 55,000 locals living in the historic city of Venice (Centro Storico) and around 1,000 to 1,300 restaurants, plus bars and street food, “You have to be qualified and keep a high standard,” Fragiacomo says. “You have to cultivate a loyal local following” Owner since 1994, the restaurant has undergone a few changes under Fragiacomo. Beginning as an easy-going late night joint to grab pizza and a quick bite, in 1999, the owner decided to try something new. He started by introducing local wines that were on the verge of disappearing from the market. Fragiacomo then took a friend’s recommendation to tap into the Venetian library’s rich collection of ancient recipes from the 14th to 18th centuries and try to replicate some of these old-fashioned dishes. “Wines and ancient dishes are our specialty. It’s classic food. I don’t like stylish fusions.” One of the most compelling aspects of Bistrot de Venise is Fragiacomo’s vision and drive to bring people together. “We organize a lot of events here. I want the locals to feel at home even when we are completely overrun by tourists. This restaurant is more of a local spot. Beginning in October, we all start to meet here throughout the winter months and read poetry.” Fragiacomo takes an enormous book off of the shelf and opens it on the table. The pages have been filled (since 1994) with hand-written poetry entries written by or recalled from guests, including some famous poets like Jack Hirschman. Overall, the experience of dining at Bistrot de Venise revolves around the company of the staff, the owner and the locals, and about perhaps expanding the palette to some more adventurous raw seafoods and lesser known wines. Calle dei Fabbri, 4685 30124 Venice, Italy bistrotdevenise.com
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Photo Courtesy of Bistrot De Venise L E FA I R MA G A Z I NE | 6 3
II. ZANZE XVI With its talented and charming young staff, Zanze XVI in Venice, Italy is a treat for the mouth and the eyes. It is rare to hear English spoken in this restaurant, as most of the diners appear to be locals. The plating at the hip but cozy location is a marvel and is a testament to the chef â€™s vision and creativity. Our team was particularly impressed with the look of the fried sardine sour dish that is topped with month-long spiced rose water marinated onion and a pink floral salad. The fairy-dust-like raspberry powder throws this dish over the top adding a sweet-tasting and feminine-looking finish. Our starter, basil cream beignets with a light powdered sugar were heaven while they lasted (for about five seconds). Be sure to order the stonefish caper soup with a roasted potato broth and the spider crab Orecchiette (little ears) pasta to follow. Santa Croce, 231 30135 Veneice, Italy zanze.it
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Developed by world-famous creator Philippe Starck and the Alajmo brothers, Italy’s most revered culinary family, AMO is located at the base of Venice's Rialto Bridge, inside the atrium of the T Fondaco dei Tedeschi luxury department store. The restaurant’s style is updated Venetian with black and white striped booths adorned with red accent pillows and a regal throw with a golden griffin embroidery. Let’s start with the tartare (which was the best and most innovative tartare we tried in Europe). The beef tartare is covered in a black summer truffle tiramisu. AMO is conscious of its vegetarian guests. For something different, try la tartare di verdure, vegetarian beet tartare served with capers, a plant-based mayonnaise, and gluten-free rice crisps in a beautiful deep shade of purple. The avocado carpaccio is another simple veg-friendly option and consists of sliced avocado in a guacamole sauce. You wouldn’t know it from his humble presence, but AMO’s bartender, Lukas Kelm, competed in and won second place in last year’s Stoli Elit competition with his Sea Martini. Our team was lucky enough to sample a few of Kelm’s creations — our favorite was a gin maré infusion with cherry tomato, basil, essence of rosemary, and activated vegetable coal.
S. Marco, 5556, 30100 Venice, Italy alajmo.it
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Regarding the preserved pork belly, oyster, potato or Cochon fernier en promenade á Utah Beach main dish, Chef Christophe Saintagne said, “I love this dish because it’s meat mixed with the flavors of the sea. It’s like my home in Normandy so when I cook it and eat it, I feel like I am home.” Saintagne has created a home within his restaurant, Papillon. His wife, her friend and Saintagne’s one-year old son sit in the corner of the restaurant. “I want to share real food with the guests made by real people. This kind of restaurant in Paris is rare — it’s nice but there is no luxury attitude.” Three men in blue suits and aviators sit in the sunny outside seating. The restaurant is a popular lunch destination among local lawyers and business professionals. “As the chef, I have to take care of the producers, products, and the health of the customers. It’s very important.” Our favorites on the menu were the mushroom salicornia duck ravioli (ravioles de canard) and the special, salmon carpaccio. “When you eat something, you want to feel good after eating it because we have to live in Paris. We have to work and dream…” Le papillion is also symbolic of Saintagne’s story. After having worked for Alain Ducasse, French-born Monégasque chef who operates a number of restaurants including Alain Ducasse at The Dorchester and holds three stars in the Michelin Guide, from 2008 until 2016, Saintagne decided to launch the Papillon project. The chef then metamorphosed into a restaurateur. On what the butterfly signifies to him, Saintagne says, “It’s a symbol of freedom and nature and I love it.” We finished with honey-infused Madeleine pastries, sorbet, and the restaurant’s famous chocolate cake with a mint garnish. Bon appétit!
Photographer Tracy Kahn
8 Rue Meissonier, 75017 Paris, France papillonparis.fr
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V. HOSTARIA DA FRANZ At Hostaria da Franz (circa 1984) each dish is unique in its own way, with a focus on the flavor of the main ingredient. If you order sea bass, for example, all of the other ingredients are incorporated to enhance the flavor of the sea bass. The octopus at Hostaria da Franz was the best LEFAIR Magazine tasted in Italy, it’s preparation — perfect — evident from its tenderness. It is served on a rectangular plate with drops of two different sauces plus an eggplant and caviar tapenade and a celery palate cleanser served in a soup spoon. The dish paired beautifully with the 2016 Recantina with its balanced tannins and and mildly fruity and flowery pleasant finish. The lighting in the restaurant creates a soft golden glow. The owner, Maurizio Gasparini, a well-traveled, friendly Venetian is dressed in a beautifully tailored grey suit. He holds his white-framed reading glasses. “We want to do enough research so that we have a special flavor in every plate we create. To be a good chef and restaurateur, you must not just go to the fish market every day, but talk to the people in the fish market, talk to the fishermen and grocers. Pick fresh herbs yourself. If you don’t live with the food in this way, your restaurant cannot attain the highest level.” Salizada Sant Antonin, 3499 Castello, Venice,Italy hostariadafranz.com
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Photo Courtesy of Limon
Photographer Tracy Kahn
Located on the side of Hotel Marignan Champs ElysĂŠes, a historic destination completely redesigned by Pierre Yovanovitch in 2012, you will find a vibrant and modern restaurant with a large streetside patio and exquisite menu. Find yourself experiencing a tribute to Latin American culture at this chic brasserie and cocktail bar with a playful decor and a variety of colorful drinks on the menu. LEFAIR Magazine recommends Limon for a cocktail. Fresh and generous cuisine, the Limon menu pays tribute to Latin America by honoring citrus fruits. The restaurant offers various culinary experiences including tartares, crisp salads, and shrimp and chicken dishes. The cocktails alone distinguish Limon from other restaurants in the city. To compliment the monochromatic colors in the restaurant, they truly focus on keeping the drinks offered on the menu a part of the decor. The selection includes a Bloody Mary, a cool blue Gin Martini, as well as many Margaritas that have a caramel-tasting twist. Limon focuses on twisting classic drinks and making them unique and tasteful, whether it is the cinnamon and tea syrup, tonka beans or mango vinegar â€” each cocktail has specific ingredients to make sure you are satisfied with your choice of drink. Do not hold back and try an exceptional combination like the Mango Daiquiri to compliment the Tuna Tataki, which would also go well with their redefined Moscow Mule. 14 Rue de Marignan, 75008 Paris, France hotelmarignanelyseesparis.com 6 8 | L E FA I R MAG AZI NE
Photo Courtesy of Limon
Lyrics we Love MAÎTRE GIMS
LA MÊME FT. VIANNEY
J’SUIS TROP COMPLIQUÉ, JE N’CHOISIRAI JAMAIS QUE LES DEUX CÔTÉS, NE ME DEMANDEZ. I’M TOO COMPLICATED. I’LL NEVER CHOOSE. DON’T ASK ME TO PICK SIDES. L E FA I R MA G A Z I NE | 6 9
7 0 | L E FA I R MAG AZI NE Photographer Tracy Kahn
ROMANTIC 6 hotels for your dream trip to France & Italy GETAWAYS
ADLER THERMAE adler-thermae.com L E FA I R MA G A Z I NE | 7 1
SAN CLEMENTE PALACE KEMPINSKI Venice, Italy San Clemente Palace Kempinski is located on the private island of San Clemente, only minutes away by complimentary boat from Piazza San Marco. A proud member of Leading Hotels of the World, this exclusive retreat guarantees peace, tranquillity and privacy. Enjoy the classic decor of 190 rooms and suites overlooking the lagoon or the centuries-old park. Indulge in three house restaurants — Acquerello, La Dolce, Insieme — while tantalising your senses with exceptional interpretations of iconic Italian and Venetian specialities. The hotel’s proximity to Venice and the unique combination of conference rooms and outdoor areas make San Clemente Palace the perfect choice for outstanding events and unforgettable weddings. With its outdoor pool, tennis court and a state-of-the-art fitness room, as well as herb-therapy massage treatments, the island is the perfect destination to unwind in total relaxation. Isola di San Clemente, 1 30124, Venice, Italy kempiski.com Photographer Tracy Kahn 7 2 | L E FA I R MAG AZI NE
ADLER THERMAE Tuscany, Italy Put yourself in the mood and discover the 5 Star ADLER THERMAE Spa & Relax Resort, one of Italyâ€™s leading wellness hotels. Enjoy the warm thermal springs, regenerate your energy, spoil yourself and take time off to enjoy the finer things in life. The wellness hotel ADLER THERMAE Tuscany offers a combination of nature and architecture, Italian nonchalance and carefree luxury in a relaxed yet stylish Tuscan holiday atmosphere. Cozy warmth, relaxing vapors and the magical setting of the Travertine Quarry will carry you away to a world of peace and harmony. Delight in the stimulating interplay of hot and cold, water and steam, and aromas and colors. A wellness holiday at Hotel ADLER Tuscany is about discovering wellbeing, regaining the slow life and finding peace.
Via Bagno Vignoni 1 S. Quirico Dâ€™Orcia, 53027 Bagno Vignoni, Italy adler-thermae.com
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Photographer Tracy Kahn
HOTEL DE NELL Paris, France When Charm & More decided to create a hotel of discreet luxury with top-end amenities and service, all in a chic, relaxed atmosphere, they brought together the talents that could turn that dream to reality: Jean-Michel Wilmotte for the design, Bruno Doucet for the restaurant and a team from the luxury hospitality industry for the services. Whether it’s in one of the 33 rooms or suites, settled in at the restaurant or lounging under the bar’s glass roof, the Hôtel de Nell welcomes you in style, with intimate spaces trimmed in exclusive décor. The sole objective: enhancing your well-being. 9 Rue du Conservatoire, 75009 Paris, France charmandmore.com 7 4 | L E FA I R MAG AZI NE
Photo by Christophe Biesla Photo by Christophe Biesla
Photo by Christophe Biesla
Paris, France Maison Breguet is located on the Right Bank, in the east of Paris. Its soul and charm are both intact. Close to the Marais district and its art galleries, retail clothing shops, and trendy restaurants, our Hotel is a secondary home to travelers from all over the world, to those who love culture, fashion, and adventures. People come here from all over the capital to have dinner with friends, enjoy a cocktail, have business meetings, listen to music, or even write their next novel. People are used to this place because itâ€™s just like a true home: warm and welcoming, iconoclastic, full of discrete and caring attentions. 8 Rue Breguet, 75011 Paris, France maisonbreguet.com
Photo by Christophe Biesla
HOTEL CHATEAUBRIAND Photos Courtesy of Hotel Chateaubriand
Paris, France Discover the refinement and unparalleled charm of a beautiful nineteenth-century Parisian mansion, 150 meters from the legendary Champs-Elysées, on the quietest street of the district. An exceptional setting for a stay that marvelously combines tourist attractions — shopping and culture — of the Golden Triangle of Paris, and absolute serenity. A haven of peace two steps away from the Champs-Elysées... Like a score, the Chateaubriand Hotel draws its harmony in every detail, from the imposing chandelier in the patio to the velvet and crocodile lounge chairs in the living room, through the powder-pink doors coming straight from a Venetian palace, the bull’s eye window and the black chimney from the Palace of Versailles, a shell sculpture, a flight of stairs, petrified wooden coffee tables, 18th century paintings and portraits, a collection of beetles... In these places, Romain Rio reinvents the story of each object, making it timeless and wildly contemporary! Discover in the nooks and crannies of the hotel the hidden delicate miniature paintings of 18th century inspiration. In a door frame, near a fireplace, hidden by a headboard... So many subtle winks and so many details that make the spirit of Chateaubriand. 6 Rue Chateaubriand, 75008 Paris, France rrhotels.fr 7 6 | L E FA I R MAG AZI NE
THE CHARMING HOUSE Venice, Italy A bespoke design hotel, tailored to your taste. This is the hospitality offered at Charming House establishments, providing elegant accommodations with the same privacy and intimacy of a private residence. A change of pace. New settings that are stimulating, creative and relaxing, enveloped in contemporary art; providing a personalized experience for the senses that is ideal for a vacation or business trip. Charming House combines these realities in new and unique accommodations. DD724, DD694 and iQs are designed for the curious traveler who is open to new trends in places that are rich in style, ambiance and personality. Charming house is art, poetry and light. Dorsoduro, 724 30123 Venice, Italy thecharminghouse.com
Photos Courtesy of TheLCharming House E FA I R MA G A Z I NE |
Laurence Boisson Hat Dynamikos Sunglasses dynamikosbrand.com Brandy Melville Bodysuit brandymelville.com Adeline Ziliox Couture Skirt adeline-ziliox.com Abe by Ariane Chaumeil Rings abejewelry.com
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Photographer Tracy Kahn @tracykahn Wardrobe Stylist Madeline Rosene @madelinerosene Model Myrtille Revemont @myrtille_revemont Makeup Artist Azami @azami.azami.azami Hair Artist Pauline Brunel @paulinebrunel Producer & Videographer Neo Tony Lee @neotonylee Assistant Lucas Archier @lucas.a_photos Locations Hotel Chateaubriand @hotelchateaubriand & Faust Paris @faust_paris
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Patrick Pham Dress patrickpham.fr Abe by Ariane Chaumeil Earrings abejewelry.com
Ur aut am aut eicaest officab orerrum et ad molluptam fuga. Et quident inctur sam aut aut el iumque volorpo ritiass inctori taturer chilitate pel inciend igenim volut
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Patuna Couture Dress patunacouture.com L E FA I R MA G A Z I NE | 8 1
Nora Rieser Collar norarieser.com
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Armine Ohanyan Dress armine-ohanyan.com
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Brandy Melville Bodysuit brandymelville.com Abe by Ariane Chaumeil Necklace abejewelry.com Adeline Ziliox Couture Cover Up adeline-ziliox.com
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Armine Ohanyan Dress armine-ohanyan.com
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Brandy Melville Bodysuit brandymelville.com Abe by Ariane Chaumeil Necklace abejewelry.com Adeline Ziliox Couture Cover Up adeline-ziliox.com L E FA I R MA G A Z I NE | 8 7
zodiac style Zodiac Fashion for the Summer Signs: Cancer, Leo and Virgo Writer Barbara Rosene, Astrologer astrologybybarbararosene.com
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Itâ€™s always fun to have a birthday in the summer. Itâ€™s just about a half a year from the winter holidays (more presents!) and so nice to have a special day to treat yourself. The summer signs are Cancer the Crab, Leo the Lion and Virgo the Virgin. These are very different personality types and their fashion sense mirrors their personalities.
They seek comfort too, even when dressing up, and might not want anything too form fitting, in case they want that second gelato. And Cancer rules the breasts — so very possibly there are plunging necklines in the Cancer’s treasure trove of outfits. They also like a bargain — not going to be paying retail prices if they can help it. Sales are definitely worth the trouble to Cancers. Resale high-end couture is very appealing to them. Cancers, be sure to check out What Goes Around Comes Around and Wasteland. Cancer is a feminine sign, and a cancer is likely to be frilly and girly, with lace and embroidery, but some are very tomboyish because of the comfort level. Ruled by Moon, this sign is associated with soft, nurturing and receptive colors like white, grey, silver and cream, which give Cancer a calming peaceful canvas. Cancer designers: Vera Wang, Elie Saab, Alice Temperley and Oscar De La Renta too are big names in Cancer fashion. Also, Paul Smith, Elizabeth Emanuel, Nicholas Matthew Kirkwood, Lazaro Hernandez and Giorgio Armani.
Photographer Yuri Sardenberg
Cancer the sensitive, emotional, family oriented crab is very happy in a vintage shop, looking for the perfect thing for the swing dance they might be attending. They love the history of clothing, older or natural fabrics — cotton, linen, silk, wool — anything traditional. Cancers are also apt to hold onto clothing because of its sentimental value; like the blouse they wore when they met the guy who broke their heart. Or the Lululemon gear they had on when they first met the next guy. Cancers do like comfort. More than any other sign, they would be the ones wearing the workout clothing when they aren’t working out. They are also the people likely to attend college classes in their PJs.
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LEO Leo the Lion does not like routine and daily monotony. They have to “tame it down” for day-time garb. Leo shines at night. They like clubs and dancing, and are comfortable in more dramatic colors and clothing. Bold colors, animal prints, gold jewelry- real gold (as befits royalty) and furs. While Cancer does not necessarily want to be the center of attention — Leo does; or more correctly, no matter what, Leo will be. Leo loves designer clothes and has very sophisticated taste. The Lion prefers to buy only the very best, like an exquisite pair of shoes or a limited-edition handbag, rather than scores of lesser wares. The truth is, they love labels. Leo also dresses to fit their current feelings and emotions, and basically they are happy souls, so they will go for vibrant, and head-turning clothing. Their number one – and lucky color is gold. It is the color of the Sun, their ruler, and it stands for all that is glorious, optimistic and sun-drenched. Gold also helps to enhance their sense of self-esteem and grandeur. No matter what color, type or style of hairLeo’s mane will be a big part of their persona — often red or golden, and always a statement. A tousled mane works for them, and really, the 1980s “big hair” is a very Leo thing. A Leo will rarely leave the house without her “face” on. Even if it’s only a bit of mascara and some great red lips — Leo will not be seen as thrown together. Always fabulous, chic, and a bit larger than life is the Leo personality. Leo Designers: Coco Chanel, Michael Kors, Betsey Johnson, Jeremy Scott, Yves Saint Laurent, Santino Rice, Jai Nice and Socrates Mckinney.
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VIRGO Virgo the Virgin is a bit like the sexy librarian stereotype. Buttoned up, with not a hair out of place, little cat glasses and in muted or basic colors, Virgo still comes across as completely put-together and subtly sensual. Virgo is always fastidious and ladylike but functional. Virgo gravitates toward beautiful pieces that have a hint of sexiness without ever feeling too over-the-top. Suits, matching sets, blazers, and classic styles are the Virgo’s statement. “I am in control, organized and appropriate,” is the mantra. Clothes are always perfectly fitting and made from high quality material — no polyester for this sign! They are never too flashy or revealing, and would never wear anything too tight. The least amount of attention a Virgo can draw to herself, the better and the more confident she feels (Basically a reaction to the attention drawing Leo). Oh, and don’t forget a watch. Even in this iPhone era time, Virgo wants their watch as both a fashion and philosophical statement. Virgos tend to over-think, thanks to Mercury as their ruler, so sometimes they may over accessorize. Only in this do they go overboard. That rule of removing one piece of jewelry before leaving the house is a good one for Virgo. Virgo Colors are white, natural colors like beige, soft primary colors (blues, greens, yellows), forest green, moss green, wheat field golden — anything associated with the earth, much like Taurus their earth sign buddy. And navy blue is also a favorite, because of its ship shape and Bristol fashion connotation. Virgo Designers: Karl Lagerfeld, Tom Ford, Stella McCartney, Roland Mouret, Gareth Pugh, Elsa Schiaparelli, and Zandra Rhodes.
Photographer Tiziano Lugli L E FA I R MA G A Z I NE | 9 1
ADLER THERMAE: HERE IS WHERE YOU HEAL Photographers Jeffrey Fountain @jeffreyfuente & Tracy Kahn @tracykahn Writer Madeline Rosene @madelinerosene
ERE is where you heal. HERE is where you relax. “Light in Tuscany is very special and light is important for your wellbeing,” Elisabeth Wittmann of ADLER THERMAE said. ADLER THERMAE, located in Bagno Vignoni among the rolling hills of Tuscany is a spa retreat and resort. It’s early July and normally the land and the trees are not quite as lush at this time of year, but due to the unusual amount of rain that the area experienced this season, the hills and countryside are vibrantly verdant. Healing begins near the entrance of the spa where there is a bit of natural aromatherapy, a garden of herbs — Thyme, Rosemary, Chives... It might be worth traveling to Tuscany just for this single deep breath of Tuscan air and natural aromas.
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The resort revolves mostly around one thing: water. The Fountain of Youth, better digestion, higher concentration, improved mood and energy â€” those benefits are just the result of drinking it. Sparkling and still mineral water taps are located throughout the resort so white robed guests stay hydrated as they wander around from sauna to spa treatment and then in for a swim. Soothing trickling sounds from water fixtures resonate throughout the hotel. There are over ten thousand square feet of indoor and outdoor pools. ADLER THERMAE is of course known for its thermal waters, a type of mineral water located deep underground, containing healing properties that are exempt from bacteria and pollution. Naturally pure and rich in mineral salts, iodine and CO2, and Selenium, a powerful natural antioxidant, thermal water is recognized for its therapeutic properties, particularly those that concern the skin. AvĂ¨ne, Vichy, and La RochePosay are three beauty brands known for their use of thermal waters in their products. While understudied and existing studies are often funded by cosmetic companies, the therapeutic and cosmetic efficacy of thermal water has been recorded since ancient times. It is most commonly known for treating skin conditions like chronic inflammatory skin diseases and acne. The skin is comprised of a complex ecosystem and a specific mix of minerals, fatty acids, and good bacteria. Washing your face with harsher soaps can often create unbalanced skin. Thermal water could theoretically rebalance this micro environment for healthier skin. Bathe in these healing 122 degree fahrenheit thermal springs and wash away impurities in waves of wellbeing. The thermal pool outside offers exquisite views of Italyâ€™s mountains, crisp green grass, and the tiny historical town of Bagno Vignoni and its tower. If you ever experience vacation guilt, this resort might be for you. While you might not be working on your career or your job during your stay, this space invites you to work on yourself, seriously. With yoga classes, personal fitness trainers and nutritionists, two doctors on the premises, Dr. Stefania Mazzieri and Dr. Michele Bianchini, and almost exclusively healthy food options, it might be impossible to stay at ADLER THERMAE and not return home a better version of yourself. L E FA I R MA G A Z I NE | 9 3
Often our own energy and feelings feed off of the energy and feelings of others. The moment you arrive at ADLER THERMAE, breathe in the scent of citrus fruits and lilies that lingers throughout and take a sip of your welcome cocktail, the other guests’ sense of ease and contentment will fuel your own. Both the ADLER THERMAE guests’ and the staff’s demeanors set this hotel apart from others. “I hate technology,” our videographer, Jeffrey Fountain, said when his camera broke. “Yeah, me too. That’s why I work with liquids,” said the bartender, Michele Zincone, as he
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poured a shot. “We’re going to see the stars tonight!” he said. On the terrace of the bar at ADLER THERMAE, we look up at the exquisite night sky, a soup of stars so bright and so seemingly tangible, a nice change from Los Angeles where we’re lucky if we see one star (and it might just be a satellite). We enjoyed talking with and getting to know Michele, who is the new proud owner of 100 acres of land in Tuscany, just down the road from ADLER THERMAE. He has big plans for the land that include a house and a farm. With this in the works, he hangs out in the natural hot springs on his land with friends experiencing freedom within nature.
ADLER THERMAE is the kind of destination that helps its guests become less tech obsessed. With our phones in our faces, we often forget our surroundings can be just as, if not more stimulating. Forget TVs in the gym — ADLER THERMAEhas outdoor treadmills on a mountain side with panoramic views of Bagno Vignoni and the mountains. With a beauty bible-sized book of spa treatments, hikes for days, and even ADLER THERMAE’s walking distance winery, there are so many new experiences to be had. Our team was most taken with the salt bath Grotta Salina. Located next to the pool there is a hidden grotto with a salt bath inside. This weightless floating experience in warm thermal water enriched with Dead Sea salt brings deep cleansing and harmony to the skin. During this romantic activity for two, expect a slight tingling sensation on the skin and then a serious glow the following day. “I am the menu,” our waiter said before reciting it verbatim. The
menu changes every night. White linen tablecloths and napkins and black tables and chairs — the dining room’s ceiling is open and a tree grows in the middle of the room towards the sky. It was a pleasure trying different wines from regions nearby. The 2015 Orcia Sangiovese was a hit with its chewy tannins and hints of spice and raspberry. Families, old and young, different nationalities — the guests at Adler Thermae come from all walks of life but all seem to have purpose and intention in being there. There is a pervasive sense of focus and self-betterment. The proof of the resort’s success at rehabilitation and improved well-being is shown through its guests’ loyalty. Many guests have been visiting ADLER THERMAE for ten years and some since the opening in 2004. LEFAIR Magazine highly recommends this retreat to anyone seeking plenty of pampering in one of the most beautiful parts of the world. ■ L E FA I R MA G A Z I NE | 9 5
ADLER THERMAE IN MOTION
Videographer Jeffrey Fountain @jeffreyfuente 9 6 | L E FA I R MAG AZI NE
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Orseund Iris Top orseundiris.com Alice McCall Pants alicemccall.com Dena Kemp Necklace & Ring denakempjewelry.com
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Olivia Culpo @oliviaculpo Writer Madeline Rosene @madelinerosene Photographer Ben Cope @ben_cope Wardrobe Stylist Sonia Young @soniayoungstyle Hair Artist Justine Marjan @justinemarjan Makeup Artist Elizabeth Castellanos @makeupbyliz with Dew Beauty Agency @dewbeautyagency Videographers Jeffrey Fountain @jeffreyfuente and Jason Edward @jasonedwardcreative Assistants Jaye Younkin @jayemary Hayley Heckmann & Hannah Lewis @hannahmeow_meow Location Viceroy Beverly Hills @viceroybevhills
AN INTERVIEW WITH
Olivia Culpo “I’ve learned in my life that putting a smile on your own face, can put a smile on other people’s faces... I look at somebody who is smiling and I get joy out of their smile…”
everly Hills, CA — it’s a hot summer day in July. Thank God for air conditioning and Olivia Culpo’s famous smile, about which she has tweeted, “A smile is the prettiest thing you can wear.” That says a lot, considering some of the incredible pieces celebrity stylist, Sonia Young, pulled for Culpo to wear during our cover shoot at Viceroy Beverly Hills with celebrity photographer, Ben Cope. Summer fashion in a 5-star hotel room with absurdly talented artists — no wonder Culpo chose fashion as a career. The former Miss Rhode Island, Miss USA, and finally Miss Universe of 2012, and and current actress and model — her film Reprisal with Bruce Willis and Frank Grillo premieres August 31st and you can find her on E!’s Model Squad premiering September 4th — Olivia Culpo is becoming a fashion icon of our time. She showed up to the shoot hip-hop chic in silver-chained baggy black pants, high top sneakers, and a white crop top. She had just hit three million followers on Instagram and her team was thoughtful enough to bring an adorable light blue and white Suzie Q’s Bakery cake in honor of the milestone.
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You are the only person who has the ability to truly know your goals, so it’s important to keep moving in that direction and listen to yourself. MR: You grew up in Rhode Island and your parents are musicians — what kind of music do they play? Do you like it? OC: My parents met at college during orchestra. My mom plays the viola professionally and my dad plays the trumpet. I grew up with classical music constantly blaring and all of my 4 siblings play a different instrument. It was definitely a really loud house! MR: You play the cello — do you still play often? If so, how does that influence your life? OC: I still play the cello a lot. I love how it can completely take me out of reality and ease my mind. It is the number one thing that helps me when I’m feeling stressed or overwhelmed. I try to practice as much as I can and it’s always awesome when I can somehow incorporate it into work. Last year I actually recorded the cello on a track produced by Snoop Dog. That was so cool. I also performed with ASAP Ferg for a holiday special. MR: How is your relationship with your parents? OC: I’m so close with my entire family. We certainly know how to get on each other’s nerves, but at the end of the day, they are the most important thing to me. I try to spend as much time with them as possible. MR: I read that your parents didn’t approve of pageants at first. How do they feel now? OC: My parents were so scared at first when I entered Miss Rhode Island. They thought it was narcissistic and out of character for me considering I had never done anything like that before. They thought I should be on stage performing the cello with an orchestra, not participating in a pageant. Now they are much more supportive and understand that I was working toward something.
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MR: Do you have any advice for young people whose parents don’t support or believe in their career choices? OC: Every person is going to face challenges seeking dreams regardless of what anyone else says or thinks. It’s something that is completely unavoidable whether it’s coming from your peers, parents, or even strangers or often times from inside yourself. You are the only person who has the ability to truly know your goals, so it’s important to keep moving in that direction and listen to yourself. I always think of it as having blinders on. Staying focused on the goal and not listening to outside or inside judgements. Also, when it seems too tough to continue, I try to put attention on what is working and my successes and this keeps me positive and excited to stay on my journey. MR: What do you say to critics who say that beauty pageants foster competition among women instead of camaraderie? OC: I find that women can be supportive of each other or competitive. I choose to actively be supportive and help promote women in everything I do. MR: As someone who went to an all-girls school and entered pageants (now you’re going to be on E!’s Model Squad), you have a lot of experience with relationships with women. What is the most important thing about relationships between women? OC: My female friends, my sisters and my mom are such a big part of my life and have made such an impact on who I am today. When I need advice, when I need a shoulder to cry on, when I need a pep talk, I typically go to some of the females in my life. I trust them and their opinions. I try to be as honest and communicative as I can in all my relationships and that can really help foster a real relationship.
RetrofĂŞte Top fwrd.com
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MR: Would you call yourself a feminist? OC: Heck yes! MR: I listened to a very intense interview you had several years ago with Russia Today (RT). The interviewer made personal, seemingly negative comments about how much you smile (loved your answer to this by the way) and other comments regarding the beauty industry and pageantry. You remained levelheaded and calm during this segment. You are older and more experienced now — if you could do this interview over, is there anything you would say to this interviewer? OC: I don’t have any regrets for how I handled this interview. It was pretty obvious that she was trying to “catch” me. She definitely made that very clear to the viewer. MR: How do you remain poised under high-pressure situations? What are your tips when it comes to dealing with stress? OC: I love meditating, exercising and journaling. For me, these are all the ways I am able to channel my energy and thoughts so I don't feel totally overwhelmed. I also feel like it helps me stay grounded and in touch with who I really am.
I love meditating, exercising and journaling. For me, these are all the ways I am able to channel my energy and thoughts...
Sometimes in this industry there is so much going on that you can truly feel out of touch with yourself. My family friends (who feel like extended family) also help me a lot in realizing that sometimes the things we take super seriously are really not that stress-worthy anyway. MR: You have a lot going on right now! TV series, Model Squad launching September 4th on E! and your film Reprisal with Bruce Willis and Frank Grillo premieres August 31st. What are you most excited about? OC: I can’t wait to see how both projects come together! It is always so rewarding to see everyone’s hard work pay off. The fact that this is my first action movie is definitely the most exciting part for me. Also, Model Squad has some of my good friends in it, so it will be so fun to watch together. MR: Have you always wanted to act? What is the best part about acting for you? OC: It’s always been a dream to me. Acting is art coming to life. I love the idea of being able to leave my everyday life and tell someone else’s story. For a short time you’re able to completely escape reality and take the viewer and yourself on a journey. MR: Do you have any other projects you are currently working on? OC: I have a lot of things coming up in the fashion space. I have been designing a new project that will be exciting to share. I am also about to start a movie in Jamaica. Fashion month in September is always the busiest but most exciting month. I am literally going straight from NYC to Jamaica to Paris to Milan and back to Paris. MR: How does travel play a role in your life? Where are some of your favorite places you’ve been and why? OC: I love anything with a beach and beautiful weather. That’s the most ideal location for me to unwind and relax on vacation. I also love traveling to Europe. There is so much culture and depth. I always learn so much when I am there. Every time I travel somewhere I do my research and find a new restaurant and/or walk through a new neighborhood. Some of my favorite places that I have visited recently are Ibiza, Singapore and Montenegro.
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From food to art, to architecture, there is always so much that surprises me. I always learn something new. MR: What is the best part about traveling and seeing new places? OC: I think the best part about traveling is experiencing new cultures. You are given such a new perspective when you are immersed in a new way of living. From food to art, to architecture, there is always so much that surprises me. I always learn something new. MR: Are you still involved with the HIV cause? Have you been involved in other charitable work since the pageant? OC: Yes, I still work very closely with amfAR to raise awareness and funds for aids research and prevention. I am on the board of Best Buddies, an organization that helps foster a better life for people with developmental disabilities. I am also a global ambassador for Pencils Of Promise, which builds schools in developing communities all over the world. MR: You hit your 3 million mark on social media! Congratulations! How has social media helped you connect with your audience? OC: I love how creative I can be on social media. It really has become an outlet for me and a way to communicate with people. I enjoy creating content but I also am constantly inspired by other feeds. MR: What are some of the craziest DMs you’ve ever received? OC: I think it’s always crazy and weird when absolute strangers ask to get married. No thank you! (Laughs out loud). MR: What do you want our readers to know about Olivia Culpo? OC: That I love and appreciate them all!! ■
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For Love and Lemons Top & Skirt forloveandlemons.com LE FA I R MA G A Z I NE | 1 0 5
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Lovers + Friends Bathing Suit loversandfriends.us Dena Kemp Necklace denakempjewelry.com
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Alice McCall Jumpsuit alicemccall.com Dena Kemp Ring denakempjewelry.com
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Youâ€™re an original. Your bag should be too.
MAISON BREGUET: GET INSPIRED
Writers Courtney Snyder @csnydzzz & Madeline Rosene @madelinerosene Photographer Tracy Kahn @tracykahn
he Parisian hipsters flock to the 11th arrondissement, close to the Marais district and its art galleries, retail clothing shops, and trendy restaurants. Itâ€™s an artsy area of Paris, reminiscent of up and coming Chelsea Manhattan. Among art and its artists, you will also find Hotel Maison Breguet. A welcoming, bright and pleasant place with tasseled keys and hot air balloon printed light blue wallpaper, this 5-star hotel was LEFAIR Magazineâ€™s first stop in Paris. The hotel is a secondary home to travelers who love culture, fashion, and adventures from all over the world. Visitors come from all over to have dinner with friends, enjoy a cocktail, have business meetings, listen to music, or even write their next novel (or get inspired to).
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The staff is amiable and demonstrate cheerful demeanors. If you’re trying to practice your French, simply ask the staff to speak slowly en français or Pouvez-vous parler plus lentement s’il vous plaît? Nicholas, who showed us to our rooms, was truly patient and accommodating in this area and his eyes smiled behind his glasses while we failed to properly conjugate verbs. While the flooring resembles a beautiful assortment of white, blue and grey marble, it is actually a soft carpet. Once we arrived to our room we are delighted by the modern portraits on the wall, as well as the light grey with blue accent details throughout the room which coordinate to the entire hotel’s aesthetic. From the marble showers with gold hardware to the Maison Martin Margiela shampoos and lotions in the signature scent, Jazz Club, there is a romantic allure to this hotel matched with minimalistic luxuries. A classic novel (printed in French) is placed bedside in each room. We immediately relaxed in this Parisian building which somehow extended its energy to make us feel like we were transported back to a simpler time but with all the modern amenities.
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The variety and quality of food and cocktails adds another element to this hotel that makes the LEFAIR team strongly recommend this experience. A perfectly cooked omelette and a crisp cappuccino is an ideal wake up call. We enjoyed this luxurious breakfast in bed brought to us by the delightful staff. This was only our first discovery of the delicious food that Maison Breguet has to offer. The restaurant in this hotel is David Lanher’s new restaurant, who has been the chef of many successful restaurants in Paris. Including Caffé Stern, Le Bon Saint-Pourçain and Racines des Prés, and Anima — all highly respected restaurants in the city. The fitness center and spa are another excellent contribution to this well-appointed, sophisticated hotel. Enjoy a modern pool with perfectly detailed grey stone aligned under the water and surrounding the spa. It is accented by chic grey couches and a wooden detailed sauna. The fitness center is also detailed with wood, as well as a tan carpet and neutral coloring to make your workout happen comfortably and efficiently. There are just a few machines, but the gym is quaint and perfect for a quick run or weightlifting session after or before your day of excursions through Paris.
If you want to explore the culinary offerings and sites in the area, have the staff make you a reservation — “I’m in the mood for des huîtres et des crevettes!” (Speak a little Franglais, it’s okay) or “Where can I get the best seafood?” The staff will know. Or take our recommendation: Clown Bar, an unsuspecting but well-reviewed sweet spot and about a twelve to fifteen minute walk from the hotel. Each dish is a harmony of flavors, for example, the raw white tuna with raspberries and Tropea onion, and the grilled zucchini with Pecorino and lard. Get out and explore the art galleries like Dorothy’s Gallery, Galerie Joseph Minimes, Art Symbol Gallery, and Galerie Artmundi. Another notable attraction is Maison de Victor Hugo, the historic home of French poet, novelist, dramatist of the Romantic Movement and famed author of Les Misérables. Whatever you do during your stay, we’re confident this hotel and neighborhood will inspire you, ignite your creativity, and persuade you to return to Paris (maybe when you’re ready to write that first book). In the words of Victor Hugo, “There is nothing like a dream to create the future.” ■ LE FA I R MA G A Z I NE | 1 1 3
An Interview with Smashbox Studios and Cosmetics Co-Founder, Davis Factor
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THE WOW FACTOR Writer Madeline Rosene @madelinerosene Photos Courtesy of Smashbox
Why not create a brand that also felt good to wear, that feels really good on the skin?
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STUDIO 1 LIGHTBOX/LA
STUDIO 4 BIGBOX/LA
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ow many people know what the word “Smashbox” actually means? A smashbox is slang for a camera introduced in the early 1900s (think accordionshaped/camera in a box style) as a more convenient way to capture ‘snapshots.’ But now the word is most often used in association with the highly coveted Smashbox Cosmetics and the acclaimed Smashbox Studios. LEFAIR Magazine sat down with Davis Factor, co-founder of Smashbox Studios and Cosmetics. The studio, located in Culver City is hip, modern and inviting. “We did a major overhaul three years ago and gutted the whole thing and started over again,” Davis explained. Davis greets everyone as we walk through the hallways, which are lined with art by Donald Robertson, also known as the “Warhol of Instagram.” “With any successful company, it’s all about the people…” Davis said. “We’ve done it all here. I started the first Smashbox Studio in 1989 in Santa Monica on 19th and Olympic. In 1992, we moved into this place, which had five studios. We expanded. We blew up in Santa Monica because we had so many bookings.” Davis is both a photographer and, like his great grandfather, Max Factor (credited with inventing makeup for movies and film), a problem solver. When Davis noticed there were very few studio locations in Los Angeles for photographers to use, Smashbox Studios was born. The Culver City location is home to both the studio and the corporate Smashbox Cosmetics headquarters. While this creative conglomerate exists on the same grounds, the two composites function independently and are both wildly successful in their own rights. Since its original opening in Santa Monica, the studio has been a sanctuary for some of the world’s most renowned photographers including Annie Leibowitz, Helmut Newton, and Wayne Maser. Smashbox Cosmetics is probably best known for its fine assortment of face primers and lipsticks used by top beauty bloggers (Nikki DeRoest, Kandee Johnson, Shayla Mitchell, Tati, Liza Lash, Allie Ballie, and Nyané Lebajoa).
MR: Your family’s history is fascinating. Max Factor is your great-grandfather, correct? DF: Yes, well Max Factor was my great-grandfather and he basically invented makeup. Essentially, Max started the makeup business. He was a mogul in the beauty industry. He invented the word “makeup”. He revolutionized hair and makeup by working hand in hand with the motion picture business in Hollywood and as technology progressed and improved, he had to create makeup that worked on camera. In silent movies, actors could hardly make expressions because of the caked-on powder on their faces which would crack from facial movement. In response, Max developed a pan stick that actually let silent movie stars smile and laugh. The pan stick allowed them to express their true character. Everything that he made was created for motion pictures; lip gloss, eyeshadow, mascara, waterproof lipstick. All of it was long lasting for the screen.
MR: So back then it was really about problem solving. DF: Back then there weren’t any other makeup brands so he was the first makeup brand and working with Hollywood was really how makeup came to life. MR: I think I read somewhere that he created some kind of makeup for soldiers in WWII to camouflage them... DF: He did all kinds of things! Did you ever watch Our Gang? He painted the circle around the dog’s eye. There were so many different dogs on the show. The circle distinguished that dog from the others. MR: He did the makeup for Petey? That’s amazing! DF: He did Petey’s makeup! He did the circle around his eye.
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MR: So tell us about your career and how it started. Were you a photographer first? DF: My brother Dean and I did not work for our family’s company. My family sold the company back in the 70s when I was in high school. I went through college. I went to Art Center College in Pasadena where I got a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree. My brother Dean got his MBA at USC so he was the business and I’m the creative. Together we created our studio; Smashbox Studios which is slang for an old English camera smashbox. So Smashbox Studios originated in the 1990s in Santa Monica. We had one studio on 19th and Olympic. I wanted to create a working environment that all the photographers could come to from around the world. I wanted them to fall in love with the best equipment, amazing food — the food was a huge thing — and a hip environment. The first studio blew up. Photographers like Helmut Newton and Annie Leibowitz — all the big ones were sharing my one little space. Eventually this became a problem for us after a couple of years and we needed more space. We then moved to Smashbox in Culver City where you are right now and we have four studios now and of course, a cosmetics company. This studio became an incredible super studio like the ones you can find in New York and Europe. Before the studio opened, I was working at Industria NYC in New York with Fabrizio Ferri. He is an amazing photographer and owns Industria. I worked there in this is amazing studio among famous photographers. As a kid when I met Fabrizio, I already thought, “This is great and this is the business I want to be in.” When I moved back to LA and realized there was nowhere to shoot, I thought maybe if I could create a studio like he did, but in LA it would catch on here and photographers would use it from around the world. Publicists were happy, the celebrities were happy. Finally, they didn’t have to fly to New York and photographers were willing to come to LA. Our parking lot, our roof, our location was highly desirable in the fact that we were the only studio in town. My brother and I wanted to put our customers first and make sure they were well taken care of.
I wanted to create a working environment that all the photographers could come to from around the world. I wanted them to fall in love with the best equipment...
MR: And you’re still shooting with top photographers like Annie Leibowitz... You said this was her favorite studio? DF: Yeah, Annie just shot here for Vanity Fair and had shot in here many times. Every great photographer in the world has worked here. We just did the Chanel campaign. The whole campaign was shot in our studio, which was super cool. We want to foster a family-like creative community and atmosphere here and I think we have accomplished that. MR: Did you ever think you would have a cosmetics line? DF: Even though my family invented makeup, I never thought this was going to happen. Basically as a photographer, I noticed some problems with makeup. For example, when someone walks into the studio and sits down in the chair, we put concealer on her, we put foundation on her and she stands in front of the camera while we take pictures of her and her full makeup. I started to notice problems on the skin. I noticed that women needed a different foundation and that foundation reacted differently on different people. I started to see through foundation and to their skin. 1 1 8 | L E FA I R MAGAZINE
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When I was retouching (and this was all before digital), we would do it all by hand. I saw makeup melting throughout the long day of a photo shoot and we would have to stop so many times to touch up makeup. They were putting powder on powder so I started to think about it logically. All of these beauty brands were launching, like MAC. I was super into MAC. It was amazing. MAC was like a movement and I thought to myself, I love MAC and a lot of makeup artists use MAC. I like the feel and the vibe of it and I thought, Maybe I can come up with a brand that solves problems in a way where I’m not competing with them but filling the holes that the other brands were not filling: makeup that solves problems. So our team invented the makeup primer, Photo Finish Foundation Primer. It fills in lines and has a smooth velvet finish that helps set the makeup better. The payoff was clear, it looked better on the face, even with just the primer by itself. It makes skin look super smooth. It has a kind of “wow factor.” So we had the primer and then we developed an anti-shine foundation that prevents shining in the t-zones. Before this foundation, we used powder to dull shine but when powder builds up, doesn’t look good. What I created looks good to the naked eye and there doesn’t appear to be too much makeup. I thought, Why not create a brand that also felt good to wear, that feels really good on the skin? MR: It’s almost like skin care. It’s like you’re taking care of your skin when you wear it. DF: Well, I’d say we’re building it up rather than deconstructing it. I just came up with some products and we put them in the studio in little display cases. After about a month, W Magazine ran a little “What’s Going On In The World” piece and I saw our display case featured. They talked about Smashbox Studios, which was already getting a lot of good press because everybody was working here when they visited from New York. Retailers started calling us when they saw the editorial and the next thing you know we were in the stores. We decided we were going to build a brand from the ground up. From the second the model walks into the photo studio, basically, I want her to feel camera ready. I want her to look great in front of the camera. I want her to keep the makeup on and not take it off when she leaves the shoot, to go out, look so good and feel so good. MR: Did you start branding and marketing after you came up with this concept? DF: To tell you the truth, we did not. It all happened so fast. Digital wasn’t what it is now. At first, it was up to the retailers to reach out to the customers and educate them. MR: What year was this? DF: 1995-ish, a year or so before we were actually in stores. We were in Nordstrom first. Now were in Nordstrom, Sephora, ULTA, Macy’s — we’re all over the world now. MR: If anyone told you 25 years ago that you would have a cosmetics brand, would you have believed them? DF: If you had asked me 25 years ago, I would have said no. But as a photographer, I understand the needs of the subjects and I also understand the needs of the customers. We’re super creative and we really believe in empowering women. That’s huge for us. Giving back to the community, doing everything we can for the environment, being cruelty free, and getting involved with different artist collaborations for our collections are all important to Smashbox.
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MR: What are some recent collaborations you’ve done? DF: We just did a great one with Jasmine Sanders aka Golden Barbie in addition to a rose gold collection called Petal Metal with Vlada Haggerty. She’s a social media star but she’s been our lip editor for years. She’s just amazing to work with. She does all these cool designs on her lips — using various colors and drips. We just did a collection with her. The “Love Wall” outside by Curtis Kulig is one of the most iconic walls in Los Angeles. We created this for a collection we did with Curtis and it has become a stop on the Street Art of LA tour. We’ve partnered with Ana Strumpf who often works with Vogue. She designs funky drawings on the covers of high-end fashion magazines. We’ve done tons of collaborations with so many talented people. MR: Nicole Bordeaux partnered with Smashbox to create Photo[Genics, a full service management and production office that represents fashion models, young up and coming actresses, correct? DF: Yes, we just love Nicole and have been friends with her forever. I remember one day I thought, “Why not start an agency at Smashbox?” She agreed and she came here and she opened up Photo[Genics, a boutique modeling agency that works with a lot
of edgy, hip girls. Nicole used to run hair, makeup and styling at Smashbox from time to time but we decided to focus on the models so she stopped doing hair makeup and styling. We just started working with Photo[Genics again a little over a year ago. Nicole has one of the best eyes in the business and together we’re like a family. We use Photo]Genics for a lot of our shoots and events. MR: How important are social media influencers when it comes to marketing your brand? DF: You know social media influencers are really an important part of the brand because they’re what is happening now. As far as branding the company, since this is a special photo studio in Los Angeles, influencers often come and shoot here. They use the studio to do their videos, we do events with them, and we’ve been working with social media influencers since the beginning. We were one of the first companies to host blogger events before the dawn of “the influencer.” I always believed in being your own editor and having your own opinion. You know what I mean? Basically, it’s unedited. Individuals get to say what they feel, they’re experts. These are the people who are passionate about makeup and some of them really know their stuff. We get a lot of input from them and a lot of the people we work with are super loyal to the brand. So our marketing is very organic. We’re not pretend. We’re real. ■
Behind the Brand
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AN INTERVIEW WITH
BRYCE SCARLETT Hair Artis t for the Stars
Writer Madeline Rosene @madelinerosene
ryce Scarlett, extroverted Gemini and hair artist for some of Hollywood’s most elite celebrities including Natalie Portman, Margot Robbie, Lily Aldridge, and Hailey Baldwin has had a busy year. Having just moved back to Los Angeles, while keeping his apartment in the West Village in New York City, Bryce says, “It doesn’t really feel real yet,” knowing that he has to leave again shortly for another 13 day jaunt to Europe. This beachy blonde is always on the move, jetting from coast to coast sporting black Nike sweats mixed with some delicate gold chains. You might remember Bryce Scarlett from our article in LEFAIR Magazine’s premiere issue, in which we interviewed him with his friend, collaborator, and makeup artist extraordinaire, Quinn Murphy. It’s been over two years since our last conversation and Bryce says, “There’s been a lot of growth” in his career. Now a brand ambassador for Morrocanoil, flying all over the world working with celebrities on their press tours, he’s signed so many celebrity NDAs that he can’t keep track. MR: Did you accomplish anything in particular this year that you feel especially proud of? BS: Having a relationship with a brand like Morroccanoil is a huge achievement and privilege. They’ve given me a platform to speak on on behalf of a brand that is a pleasure to be associated with. It’s still a privately owned company run by women and owner and founder Carmen Tal is serious about empowering women, both within the company and outside of the company. It’s great to be involved with a company that is open minded and has a family atmosphere. MR: Were there any other goals that you’ve achieved? BS: I worked on the cover of the Vanity Fair Hollywood issue last year. That was with Natalie Portman. I had always wanted to do that. I did a few foreign Vogue covers with Gigi Hadid. Enrique Badulescu shot two of them.
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MR: What are your goals for the future? BS: I think right now my goals for the future would just be more of the same. I’m really happy with the place I’m in right now and I’d love to keep it going. I wouldn’t mind spending little less time in planes and being in my own bed more often. I’m actively looking to manage a work life balance, as are most people. MR: What would be your advice to a new hair stylist who is looking to work in editorials like yourself? BS: I would say, the easiest start you can give yourself is moving to either New York City or Los Angeles. Go and assist. You have to take that financial sacrifice of working for not a lot of money and be dedicated to someone you respect and want to learn from. That is how doors open — making connections, building those relationships and earning people’s trust. MR: What’s the best piece of advice someone has given you? BS: I’ve learned a lot of things through osmosis, not necessarily quotes from people. Learning to read a room is invaluable in any industry. Take the temperature of a room and learn how to present yourself in it. That’s 60% of that battle in our industry. I can’t express that enough. So much of what we do is based on personality. You learn to read a room by trial and error. I think I have always been good at it. I’ve relied on my instincts. When it comes to celebrities and PR, people are often on edge. My job is to make people feel comfortable. The talent is always under a lot of pressure. They need to know you will make them look good but also that they can trust you. You are not adding any stress or pressure. You are a comforting presence. Knowing your place and when it’s important to interject is always a struggle. It’s a dance. People expect a certain level of honesty. There’s a fine line between being brutally honest and letting someone know if I’m not completely in love with something.
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MARGOT ROBBIE @margotrobbie
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MR: Do you have a mentor? BS: Yes, Tracey Cunningham is a major mentor to me. She took me under her wing right away. She taught me so much and gave me so much opportunity. Mentorship is so important. I think people are lucky who find a mentor. You are lucky if you find someone who you want to emulate. There is a fine line between someone who is a mentor and seeing their path and also seeing outside that box and finding your own path. I think the climate we live in with social media and the way the industry has shifted, it is important to not feel boxed in to one road to success. There are so many ways to succeed and you have to find what works for you and be confident in your strengths and not be too insecure to admit your weaknesses. I try really hard to highlight my strengths and I am very quick to outsource things that I feel someone else is better suited for. I think there is a lack of that outsourcing. A lot of people think they can do everything better than everyone. I hope that people trust me more because they know I am not going to let my ego get in the way of them receiving the best outcome they can receive.
in, it will smell like home. I have a bag that has family photos that I always have. I take a million skincare products wherever I travel. I am a skincare junkie. I just started using the Joanna Vargas exfoliating mask. I really like Joanna Vargas, Epicuran, and Lucerne. I just started using Obagi. I have to have the right skincare products with me or I freak out. Those are the things that make me feel in control. I wish I could say I packed light but I don’t. I have to have options. I get stressed out if I don’t have a solid selection of clothes. Of course, if I don’t bring enough, I just end up shopping.
She lets artists like me do our jobs and allows us to have a lot of creative input.
MR: Was this your first time working with an Oscars contendant?
BS: It was kind of my first time working with an oscar contendant. I worked with Natalie Portman for an entire award season but she was too pregnant to attend the actual Oscars. I had worked with people going to the Oscars but never an Oscars contendant. I gave Margot a haircut the night before the Oscars. I did it at like one in the morning. I was so thrilled that she wanted to do that. To give someone a fresh new look for the Oscars — the pressure was on for sure.
MR: How does travel play a role in your life? BS: This year alone, I did a ton of travel while working with Margot Robbie. I got to travel with a great team — stylist, Kate Young, and makeup artist, Patti Dubroff. We stopped in multiple cities for press trips, starting in Toronto for Toronto Film Festival. That was the kickoff for I Tonya. We went to Sydney, Paris, London, Berlin. We went a handful of other film festivals — The Hamptons Film Festival, Mill Valley Film Festival... It was a highlight of my career — no question. Margot is such a generous and willing collaborator. She is very open and trusting with everything. She lets artists like me do our jobs and allows us to have a lot of creative input. When it comes to travel, I don’t stay places very long. Often, the team is in a city for 48 hours. There is always the challenge of trying to figure out if you’re going to use your precious free time to sleep or go to a museum. Often I use the time to sleep and I am in such a special place but it’s important for me to challenge myself and go out while I’m on these trips. I’m always very excited to go somewhere I haven’t been before. I feel like I am so lucky to be able to travel for work. It’s such a gift. I like to take a Diptyque candle, the one that smells like a campfire, fou de bois, wherever I go. That way, whatever hotel room I am LE FA I R MA G A Z I NE | 1 2 7
MR: Where are some of your favorite places that you have been?
that served as a decoration.
BS: The Amalfi coast is my favorite place. Also, the trip I took to Kuwaii was magical. Positano, Capri and Kuwaii are my top three destinations. I love Paris, of course. It’s an amazing place to go for work. But it’s not where I feel the most relaxed. I’m dying to go to Cairo. I want to go to Egypt so badly. I want to do a riverboat down the Nile. I also want to go to Africa on safari.
MR: What are some challenges you face in this highly competitive industry?
Years ago when I shot Game of War commercials with Kate Upton, one of the most amazing places we went for a location shoot was where Slovenia touches the Austrian Alps. We shot in this part of Slovenia and Austria and it literally looked like that scene from The Sound of Music. It had snowed a little bit and there were baby lambs running around. Some of the best times I have traveling are when I really get to spend time in the city, like when I went to Venice and went to a really formal dinner with a bunch of people. Quinn Murphy was there. Then we walked around Venice all night. Going to the Chanel show in Paris at the Grand Palais. They basically built the Titanic inside the Grand Palais. It was just this huge fake steamliner
BS: I recently had to take a large chunk of time off of work for family matters. In our industry, everything moves so quickly. It moves so fast that you can feel yourself getting left behind. People are afraid to take a step back. The wheels keep rolling whether you’re in the car or not. That is always a challenge and it’s something I’m constantly struggling with in both negative and positive ways. I’m a workaholic. There’s no denying it, but I also have a lot of aspirations for my personal life. I think balance is the key to happiness but I think it’s also one of the hardest things to achieve. I think we have to sometimes lower our expectations of balance. Some people spend their entire lives chasing balance but I think you have to learn to rejoice in the different parts of your life when they’re excelling and not let another part of your life in which you’re not excelling bring you down from that. Nothing is ever truly going to be easy (it just looks like it is on social media). MR: Do you have any advice for people in this age of social media, FOMO, and tech stress? BS: Appreciate where you are when you’re there. We often appreciate traveling and achieving our goals in retrospect. I’ve learned to allow myself to be as present as possible during moments of achievement. But usually it’s not until I get on a plane five days later that I think, “Oh, that went really well. I’m really happy with that.” ■
LILY ALDRIDGE @lilyaldridge
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...learn to rejoice in the different parts of your life when they’re excelling and not let another part of your life in which you’re not excelling bring you down... Photo by Bryce Scarlett
Photo by Bryce Scarlett
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THECHARMING HOUSE: LIVE LIKE A LOCAL Writer Madeline Rosene @madelinerosene Photos Courtesy of The Charming House
ei è un appassionato d’arte? Do you love art? The traveling artist or fine art enthusiast would do well to stay at The Charming House in Venice, Italy. The word “charming” connotes quaint and maybe even old-fashioned, but don’t be fooled by the name. This apartment-style hotel offers the chance to live like a local but luxuriously in very modern updated rooms. The Charming House is for the traveler who wants to feel like a resident and truly immerse themselves in a neighborhood. There are actually three divisions of The Charming House: DD724, faces the picturesque Venice canal, Rio Torreselle, and is next to the Peggy Guggenheim Collection, Punta della Dogana, the pre-19th century art Gallerie dell’Accademia, and the most important museum area in all of Venice, DD694, a short walk from Charming House DD724 also faces onto Rio Torreselle and the romantic Campiello Barbaro, in the tranquil district of Dorsoduro, a stone’s throw from the Guggenheim Collection and François Pinault Collection at Punta della Dogana, and iQs, design suite apartments in the very heart of Venice, between the Rialto and St. Mark’s Square, just a short distance from the Doge’s Palace and the Bridge of Sighs. Apartments at the IQS location are equipped with kitchenettes and cooking supplies so you can cook your own Italian dinners after visiting the market. With shag carpets, lime green geometrically shaped chairs, minimalistic art, and Kenzo accents, the vibe of the hotel, while quiet and non-pretentious, is a little fun and funky.
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The LEFAIR Magazine team was lucky enough to stay at two of the three locations: DD724 and iQs. The DD724 35mqs suite is a good size for a couple traveling through Venice for a night or two. It’s easy to feel at home in the walk-up apartment style hotel rooms. We caught the morning sunrise through our, (okay, there is no better word to describe them), CHARMING windows with green shutters that open out to the streets of Venice. The room and view may want to sing to passersby below Disney Princess-style (we did). The iQs suite was quite a bit larger, at 75mqs. The lobby at iQs has a private walk-down to load into a gondola in the lagoon. This special feature is great for gliding around Venice. In the lobby, located in DD724 location are bright red arm-restless chairs, shadeless lamps and water-color style wallpaper. There is a butterfly motif throughout, with black and white paper butterflies dotting the walls and one resting on the lobby’s table next to a book about Italian artist, Fabrizio Plessi. It is in this lobby where you will also find breakfast served in the morning — traditional eggs, bacon, and cappuccino, along with an assortment of teas and fruits. It’s the decor that sets the breakfast apart — bright orange plates, cups and feathery napkin holders... On our final morning, we woke up in the iQs suite and one of the staff members, Tania, surprised our team with an assortment of fresh croissants.
An unlined book lies open for guests to leave their comments. Some are written in Italian and some in English.
“Charming and so much more. Thank you for making our stay in Venice simply the best.” “Bravo! Kind and caring to details and special requests. We thank you for a delightful stay in Venice.” “So nice as usual” “Charming House is beautiful and feels like home. The people make it even better.” ■ LE FA I R MA G A Z I NE | 1 3 1
pat r i c k p h a m . f r
Links we Love LIVE, LOVE, EXPLORE A ROAD MAP TO THE LIFE YOU WERE MEANT TO LIVE
“It’s easy to see all the negative in the world. It’s easy to see all the negative in ourselves. But it’s much harder to see all the beauty that we have in ourselves.”
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HOTEL DE NELL : MODERN LUXURY Photographer Tracy Kahn @tracykahn Writers Courtney Snyder @csnydzzz and Madeline Rosene @madelinerosene
ake utter opulence a part of your trip to Paris. Hotel De Nell is a luxury hotel located on the corner of Rue du Conservatoire and Rue SainteCécile, with all the trimmings. Picture this: you’ve had a long day traipsing through the city — shopping on the Champs Elysées, climbing the 284 steps of L’Arc de Triomphe, or better yet — walking the 1,710 steps of the La Tour Eiffel, now you’re ready to be pampered in a pristine room in which no detail is overlooked. As we arrive in our room, we are simply captivated by the modern luxury and the elevated details captured within every inch. The crisp white bedding was detailed by a soft, light tan wood headboard which connected to the nightstands. Above were elaborate light brown lights that we could moderate to our exact lighting preference — creating a relaxing, restful design. A perfectly placed gold chocolate box sits in the middle of the king sized bed along with both a weather report for the following day and a pillow menu to request your desired firmness and stuffings. A bottle of champagne and two glasses are situated on the adjacent desk, and it’s time for a bath.
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The bathroom’s design is perfectly correlated to the bedroom, but instead of a variety of neutral, white hues — the design carries monochromatic greys and saturated wood. Creating an in depth sanctuary. Prepare to enter the japonais-style bathtub along with Bvlgari products that will take you from reality and bring you to your own personal spa. It’s tea time: soak in the Bvlgari eau parfumée au thé blanc tea bag. With a moving wooden board located on top of the tub, you can place your glass of champagne right above you as you de-stress from your long day of exploring — or you can place your laptop if your luxurious stay also includes unfinished business. C’est l’heure pour le petit déjeuner! Leves-toi! You can order breakfast in bed, but we recommend hitting the buffet-style selection downstairs. Just passed the sitting room in which candles are lit morning and night, a cheery breakfast staff awaits in the morning to explain the hotel’s selection of fresh, organic fruits, milks, and grains and where their food is sourced from. We enjoyed a delightful breakfast with a variety of salt and sweet. The custom omelette (prepared to your specific requestswell-done, medium, etc…) had a mix of mushrooms, cheese and peppers. Pour the caramel sauce over the rich but smooth rice pudding (riz au lait) and let it melt in your mouth during this truly decadent dining experience. Enjoy this early morning treat before gallivanting around Paris or sinking in to a day of deep relaxation at Hotel De Nell’s spa, which is intimate and exclusive to the hotel. Designed and decorated by the famous French architect Jean-Michel Wilmotte whose focus lies in the art and mindset of well-being or “bien-être"distinguishes this spa by bringing you to a haven of peace and tranquility, focusing on exceptional facial and body care. Hotel de Nell is the ideal getaway for a few days in Paris. The comfortable rooms and contemporary luxury will enhance anyone’s travel experience in this enchanting city. While we would recommend this hotel to any person traveling to Paris, remember that while booking your stay, do not expect a traditional confirmation email from this boutique (and sometimes snarky hotel and staff) — “We are not The Marriott” the hotel manager was quick to remind us. ■ LE FA I R MA G A Z I NE | 1 3 5
Golden HOUR Photographer & Creative Director Apeksha Agarwal @apekshaphotography Wardrobe Stylist Tiffany Scott @tgatiffanystylist Director Daniel Galvin @danny.g_photography Model Guetcha Tondreau @guetcha Hair & Makeup Artist Melissa Bedi @hmubymelbe Digital Tech & Retoucher Rutvik Katuri @rutvikkaturi Assistant Brayden Schrader @brayden_schrader
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Rouba.G Mesh and Neoprene Gown, roubag.com Charlene K Jewelry charlenek.com
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Left: Coco Louelle Gold Lame Gown cocoschateau.com Charlene K Jewelry charlenek.com Right: Rouba.G Dress roubag.com Charlene K Jewelry charlenek.com
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Cadieux Feathered Gown cadieuxparis.com Charlene K Jewelry charlenek.com
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e exited the airplane onto the runway and into the hot humid Mexico air that smelled like vacation. After making our way out of the airport and successfully avoiding the timeshare salesmen impersonating travel coordinators, we were on our way to Now Amber, one of Puerto Vallarta’s most luxurious resorts.
Now Amber & Secrets
With anticipation bubbling over, we arrived at the luxurious Now Amber, complete with all the amenities for a well-deserved pampering or an incredible adventure. Set on the beautiful Banderas Bay, we were able to take in sights of the Pacific Ocean, while relaxing in the privacy of our resort. With so many options ranging from relaxation to full on adventure, we almost didn’t know where to start — though we definitely started with food. Our rooms were relaxing retreats to return to during our exhilarating experience in Puerto Vallarta. Below are some of LEFAIR Magazine’s recommendations on what to do and where to stay when you take a trip to Puerto Vallarta!
Photo Courtesy of Now Amber
The ride to Now Amber revealed to us a glimpse of the vibrancy of Puerto Vallarta. We noted the passing restaurants, strip clubs, bars, and marina. Puerto Vallarta is sometimes referred to as the San Francisco of Mexico. Nightlife and gay pride are abundant in this colorful city.
These adjoining sister hotels are located on the same property. Sharing many of the same features such as elegant rooms and suites, a world class spa, vibrant ocean views, and gourmet dining, they differ in that Now Amber is family friendly while Secrets Resort is for adults only. Every room features contemporary Mexican decor with furnished balconies and exquisite views of the deep blue Banderas Bay. Each luxurious guest suite features marble flooring, a private terrace or balcony, and a complimentary mini bar. These awardwinning hotels also feature two unique golf courses and a world-class spa.
Listed as one of the Best Beach Boutique Hotels, Hotelito Mio is defined by excellent service, attention to detail, and the warmth of its personnel. Hotelito Mio features eight unique private villas with rare elements that help it achieve the perfect blend of warm spaces and harmony with nature.
Photographer Tracy Kahn
Photographer Tracy Kahn
This exclusive, adults-only romantic getaway resort is not only internationally renowned, it’s awardwinning. Every room of this hidden gem has an oceanfront view with a private balcony overlooking the beautiful Banderas Bay. LE FA I R MA G A Z I NE | 1 4 3
La Palapa features Tropical Mexican cuisine that combines Mexican with Asian and French elements to bring you a fresh, local culinary experience you won’t soon forget.
El Malecon Himitsu, Now Amber
Now Amber Now Amber features four a la carte restaurants, a buffet, grill, and cafe. One of the restaurants, Capers, features Italian gourmet specialties and a wine cellar for an intimate dining experience. Himitsu offers the ultimate experience in Pan Asian delicacies featuring teppanyaki tables. Castaways is a great place to grab lunch or a quick bite by the pool while admiring the Pacific Ocean. Tamarindo serves local Mexican favorites in an authentic atmosphere.
Puerto Vallarta has many activities to offer whether you feel like spending the day exploring the ocean or adventuring on land. The famous boardwalk El Malecon is vibrant, full of art galleries, shopping, and nightlife. Take a trip and visit the marina. Enjoy coastal sightseeing and secluded beach visits. Tour the historic center of the city or walk through downtown and enjoy local culinary specialties such as the “pregnant shrimp.” Admire the beautiful sculptures and visit historic sites like the Guadalupe Church and The Arcs.
The Sapphire Ocean Club The culinary delights do not end at the resort. Located not too far away are some of the best eateries Puerta Villa has to offer. The Sapphire Ocean Club offers a stunning oceanfront dining experience with arrays of wines and cocktails as well as a decadent menu prepared by the Club’s internationally experienced chef. The restaurant located within Hotelito Mio blends organic and natural ingredients with exquisite Mexican flavors and offers each guest a customized menu that corresponds to their tastes and nutritional requirements. Photographer Tracy Kahn 1 4 4 | L E FA I R MAGAZINE
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Museo del Cacao
Visit Museo del Cacao also known as the ChocoMuseo which is located in the heart of the city center of Puerto Vallarta and allows you to come visit and learn how to make chocolate. The museum will also teach you everything you ever wanted to know about Mexican cacao and chocolate with incorporated live performances and chocolate tasting as well as picture and video presentations.
Enjoy tequila tastings, various fiestas, bread tastings, and yacht rides. Take an excursion to the nearby native village and enjoy the dances and pilgrimages honoring the saints. Climb up the majestic mountains and slip by canopy into the rainforest. On top of these activities, each resort offers pamperings at their own private onsite spas, access to multiple resort-specific golf courses, and other activities for guests such as snorkeling, paddle boarding, horseback riding, fitness centers, and many others that may vary depending on the resort. Or, if none of that sounds appealing, you can just relax by the pool, or indulge in the luxury that each resort and suite has to offer. The spirit and culture of Mexico are constantly present in magical Puerto Vallarta.
The Art Walk The Art Walk is an important contribution to the vibrancy of the city and the name that it has established for itself as a center of art creation, promotion, and exhibition. Various galleries in the historic center of Puerto Vallarta participate together with important national and international artists to bring these galleries to life. Remarkable paintings, sculptures, fine ceramics, blown glass, and other art is featured among the galleries. Caballito de Mar showcases art that is a reflection of Mexico’s cultural past. Corsica Galeria de Arte showcases contemporary fine art at its best and is a favorite of art collectors thanks to its catalog that only includes top fine Mexican artists. Galeria Colectika focuses on the evolution of Mexican art. Grab a glass of wine, take a walk as you sip, and discover all of the galleries as well as the incredible artists represented.
Sunshine, baby sea turtles, and shrimp ceviche for days… Puerto Vallarta is a delight to the senses and a LEFAIR Magazine vacation destination favorite. ■
Mike’s Fishing Charters and Tours Adventure with Mike’s Fishing Charters and Tours, jump off a yacht, snorkel, or take a dinghy to the beach at Hotelito Mio and stop in for lunch!
Photographer Tracy Kahn
Video by Tracy Kahn
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Jamee NATELLA Jamee Natella @jameenatella Writer Madeline Rosene @madelinerosene Photographer Ben Cope @ben_cope Wardrobe Stylists Desiree Morales @desireemorales and Dominique Bisson @dominiquebisson Assistant Stylist Ashley Barnes @ashfaithstyle Hair & Makeup Artist Kendall Cotta @kendellcotta Videographer Jeffrey Fountain @jeffreyfuente Location AKA Beverly Hills @stayaka
umble and unaffected might be the best ways to describe film producer Jamee Natella, a dynamic wonder woman of many talents. Jamee is the founder of Blueyed Pictures, a commercial and multimedia content company. It is rare to find someone with so many gifts without an ounce of pretentiousness. Jamee is a producer with feature film credits such as “Opposite Day,” “Baby Geniuses,” “JL Ranch,” and “Love is the Drug,” an environmental activist who cares deeply for preserving the earth and its natural resources (particularly clean drinking water), world traveler, mother, and soon to be a children’s book author. With such passionate pursuits, there is no doubt that Jamee leads a full life in which she manages to balance many interests and talents. Like most successful and inspiring people, she has a tendency to put herself into new environments and situations, make the very best of those experience, and learn all she can, like when she moved to Tokyo, Japan for a production position and learned to speak fluent Japanese. She is poised and secure and probably has been since the 8th grade (Oh wait, she skipped the 8th grade). Maybe her composure and graceful disposition are due to the yoga, pilates, and personal training sessions, or perhaps from her Midwest upbringing in Chicago, Illinois. We sat inside her house in Beverly Hills at a large round table with a star carved into the wood, drinking water out of glass bottles, which Jamee will tell you is better than drinking from plastic bottles, that are often transported in unregulated, often high, temperatures, causing the plastic to heat up and release chemicals into the water. “They’ve done studies on this,” Jamee said. We then decided to move outside into the yard and enjoy the perfect Los Angeles June weather.
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MR: So you moved to LA when you were 17? JN: Yes, I came out to LA to audition for a show called Rags to Riches. I graduated from high school when I was 17 and I knew I wanted to come out here and act. MR: You graduated when you were 17. How did that happen? You must be smart.
Pictures. It was there that I realized I wanted to produce. I became friends with the talented Oscar-winning actor Benicio del Toro through his manager, Rick Yorn. Benicio asked if I wanted to help with a short film so I produced a short film for him. It was a passion project — not a lot of money. It really felt like a student project! We worked really hard to make his dream come true. MR: What became of the short film with Benicio del Toro?
JN: I skipped the 8th grade. I was smart in 7th grade. I don’t know what happened after that. It’s a bad year to skip. That one year makes a big difference. I entered Freshman year and all of my girlfriends were sexy and had boobs and I was still in an awkward puberty stage! MR: You began your career in entertainment as an actress. How did you transition to behind the scenes? JN: After only a few days of being in LA, I was driving down La Cienega Blvd and all of a sudden I looked over and my childhood friend, Lara Flynn Boyle, was in the other lane. She wound up staying with me in my studio apartment until her mom moved to LA. It reunited us. We were close friends in high school but she landed a mini series called Amerika in Canada so she was gone during our Sophomore Year. It was great running into her because she was already very established in LA as an actress. She had made a name for herself. I would watch her audition and it gave me a good sense of what I was up against. Just two Chicago girls in LA working in show business! I was working — auditioning and doing guest star appearances on TV shows. My real break came with a role on Doogie Howser. I remember being on set for Doogie Howser and they were also filming Die Hard at the same time. I kept looking over at that set and wondering, “What are they doing over there?” People hardly even knew who Bruce Willis was back then but I realized I really liked watching people be on camera and that I wasn’t crazy about being on camera. I wanted to be behind the camera. I continued to work as an actress mostly because I promised my mom that I would work on that until I turned 18. After that time, I started working for Bruce Dorn as a production coordinator and then as a production manager. MR: What was the first major studio you worked for? JN: After working for Bruce, I went on to Warner Brothers. I worked for a producer there and after that, I landed a job at Alpine Pictures. I was the owner’s assistant. They bought me a laptop and I learned how to budget and do sales and distribution. My boss was from Chicago as well so we hit it off. He financed a movie called The Lord Protector and I ended up being in it and also being his assistant for the movie! Ryan Carroll directed the movie and he and I became very close friends. He was a mentor to me and we are still very close. From there, I went on to get another studio job at Touchstone
JN: The film was called Submission. It went to the Venice Film Festival and it was after that event that I was offered the opportunity to interview and produce a local morning talk show in Tokyo called Tea Time. It’s the longest running show in Japan. It’s kind of like the Japanese version of The View. The point was to educate the Japanese about Western Culture. I wound up moving to Tokyo for three years, without returning to the United States. The show had a special guest every episode. We were working with people like Bill Gates, Richard Branson, famous architects, you name it. I was given this opportunity and being paid really well. MR: And you became very educated regarding Japanese culture, yes? JN: When I moved there, I studied the Japanese language for an hour every day. I was working with all Japanese people, hardly anyone spoke English. Being there permanently with all of the magazines, media, and billboards, everything — I thought, I have to figure this language out! After eight months, I signed up with a program that matches you with a host family who only speaks Japanese to you. I moved in with a family in the countryside. I’m terrible with languages but the frustration of not being able to communicate pushed me to learn the language and assimilate. It was total immersion and that is the best way to learn a language. It took me about a year to learn how to speak Japanese. MR: How did the production company you founded, Blueyed Pictures, come about? JN: During the Tea Time period, I kept in touch with my production friends in the states. They had been supportive of me going to Japan. Helping my friends produce their shoots in Japan started becoming my full time job and I wasn’t getting paid for it. So I thought, “Why not start a company and help my friends produce in Japan?” My first job was for Richard Branson and Mark Yamamoto who owned Virgin Cinemas. I helped Virgin expand in the Asian market and they became my first client, which led to working with a load of different Virgin entities as well as gaining other clients like Mitsubishi, Pepsi, Pioneer, Toyota, and some local Japanese brands. Eventually, I had offices in Tokyo, London, and LA. I was fortunate enough to sell a portion of it. LE FA I R MA G A Z I NE | 1 5 1
MR: The children’s book series you are writing, I AM SAM in.., is about cultural differences, correct? JN: Yes, it’s been a project in the making for the last four years. I have a young son named Sam. When Sam was little, I would take him with me everywhere. I worked with nice clients who would let me bring my baby. I traveled with Sam to visit my Tokyo and London offices. During that time he would be intrigued and ask about the culture. He would want to know why things were the way that they were. “Why are they eating with chopsticks instead of forks?” or “Why do they have a queen?” He would ask me about the fish market in Japan and how they caught fish. He wanted to understand the reasons why there were double decker buses or why they drove on the left instead of the right. The thing is, not everything is easy to explain. Often, I would Google the answers to his questions and the explanations were so complicated, I had to figure out how to make a five or six year-old understand. It was these explanations that inspired the book series. I told Sam that I wanted to write a book series with him and he said we should do it together. It’s called I AM SAM in... To start, one book will take place in London, one in Tokyo, and one in Los Angeles. I can’t wait for it to be published. MR: Tell me about your environmental pursuits. JN: My passion is really about living as healthy as possible. I think it’s really important, especially in this day and age, to be as healthy as you can, eat well, and exercise. But, most importantly, we have to think about keeping the planet healthy. I care a lot about our drinking water. The one thing our species cannot live without is water. If we don’t change course now and change our habits, there will likely be wars revolving around clean water in the future. Humans have endured so much with plastic polluting our water and killing animals. Plastic is really harming the human race. It’s a pretty clear example of cause and effect. The Antarctic is melting. National Geographic (I’m obsessed with National Geographic and BBC) recently conducted a ten year-long survey. Tons of water is being released into our oceans. That, of course, affects the water rising, creating floods.
about how advertising makes us think we have to drink bottled water, yet when you drink plastic water, you are drinking water that has been put into plastic and shipped, heated up within the plastic, and not controlled. People are drinking bottled water from these major brands and they don’t realize they’re putting plastic into their bloodstream. A lot of our pipes are 80 years old and we have drinking water flowing through it. These are all situations we have created. MR: Is travel important to you? JN: I’m a Midwestern girl and I didn’t really travel much before I lived in Tokyo. The job opportunity in Japan and living as an expat gave me a lot of experience with other cultures, especially in regards to how they do business. MR: How has traveling changed your perspective on the world? JN: I think it’s made me aware of how privileged we are in America. We are spoiled, from the way we shop to our overabundance. We often don’t take care and think about things like recycling our plastic bags. We can be irresponsible. With privilege comes responsibility. We have privilege and we are one of the most predominant countries in the world with great influence. If we don’t set an example for other people, we’re not doing our job. MR: Do you think it’s too late to save the planet? JN: I don’t think it’s too late to save the planet. I think there are a lot of influential people like Al Gore and Leonardo DiCaprio who are changing the way people think. There are rangers in Africa who don’t carry guns because they believe you should never have to kill an animal. I think anyone can make a difference. There are so many documentaries now bringing these environmental issues to light that make people more aware. But we just have to keep putting it out there and educating people.
MR: Why do you think you care so much about the planet while others don’t? JN: I guess I think, if I don’t care, who will? When one person changes, it rubs off on to the next person. I care not just because I live on the planet, but because I’ve traveled all over the planet. I’ve seen the slums of India. I’ve seen the Antarctic. I’ve seen people who live in poverty, who don’t have access to water. I’ve seen all kinds of conditions. What bothers me the most are the places in which clean drinking water access can be controlled and helped, yet nothing is done about it. For example, there’s absolutely no reason why places in the United States, should not have clean tap water. We have polluted our water so much. Think
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If we don’t set an example for other people, we’re not doing our job.
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MR: How does one person make a difference? JN: One person makes a difference by never giving up on what they believe in. It’s about persistence. Some social media influencers are good examples of this. When one person influences a few others, it creates a ripple effect and it can impact thousands. There are a lot of great ideas out there — incubators and startups but it’s the people with the great ideas that never give up who succeed. Then, when one person succeeds, that success leaves an impression on others and shows them what is possible with the right actions and decisions so that person can create their own success. It’s a cycle of inspiration. Making a difference also comes from changing habits.
I thought, How boring... but maybe I should focus on one thing that I’m passionate about that I do very well. But then I realized, no. I believe I can accomplish all of these things and I don’t have to choose. On a day to day basis, I have to workout. I play tennis two to three times per week. I have a trainer and I love to bike. I like to get up before anyone is awake and go biking. It’s how I detox. I need that time to workout. If I don’t get my endorphins going, I can get moody. I make weekly goal lists and weekly to-do lists. I figure out what I need to accomplish. MR: Are you happy with what you have accomplished so far? What’s next?
MR: How do you make a difference? JN: I start by always giving more than what is expected. That’s something that I’ve always done. People have expectations and I do my best to exceed them. Helping others and being grateful gives us a sense of meaning. I send a lot of thank you notes. I believe in creating more love. Surprise someone you love. Nurture your relationships. These are all things you can do and I think these are things we are doing particularly well in the sustainability field. Someone I know told me I accomplish more in one day than they do in an entire week. I’m a believer in delegating and helping people work together. I give people the props to go ahead. I hire the best people for the position and then I let them do their jobs. I surround myself with the same kind of hardworking people. MR: Where do you think your work ethic comes from?
JN: Yes, but I feel like I haven’t gotten the projects that I really want yet. I have had to build a reputation and I’ve finally now shown that I can execute peoples’ visions. At this point, I have worked for so many people that people are more comfortable with me handling bigger projects now. I’m about to produce a movie that is sort of about vampires. When I first read that, I was like, “Really? Vampires?” But I actually think it’s a great story and maybe I can learn something here. There’s actually a lot to learn about vampires and lighting, setting tonality and trying to achieve a non-cheesy aesthetic. I’ve spent a lot of time researching with the director, Simon Needham, who I have repped for many years for commercials. We have worked on a lot of projects together. We’ve spent a lot of time on cars and lifestyle so it’s nice to transition into features together. First and foremost, I am a business woman and a producer. I love the challenge of having people come into a movie theater thinking one thing, and have them walk out with a different perspective, whether it’s a sustainability project, or a movie about vampires. At the end of the year, I’ll be producing a movie called Nightmare 19 that author, Peter Moore Smith wrote.
I believe in creating more love. Surprise someone you love. Nurture your relationships.
JN: My mom had a big influence on me. My parents divorced when I was six months old. My brothers are ten and eight years older than me and I have an adopted sister from my father’s previous marriage. I grew up more like an only child and it was my mom and me. She was always a hard worker. Both of my parents did so many things to make it possible for me to have the lifestyle that I had. Growing up, I was given a lot but I never felt like I had the merit to receive it. So I guess I still feel like I am making merit. MR: How do you find balance in your life? How do you stay sane when juggling so many pursuits? JN: Someone told me, “You need to focus and streamline,” and
MR: What do you want to be remembered for? JN: Maybe that I made a difference in the way that people live their daily lives. Living in Los Angeles, surrounded by the entertainment industry, people are following their dreams and sometimes they get so caught up in chasing that dream, that they forget to be grounded and follow through on their promises. I hope that people remember my character as being true to her word. ■ LE FA I R MA G A Z I NE | 1 5 5
Links we Love Jameeâ€™s company, Blueyed Pictures is a 16 year old company, established in Tokyo in 1998 with offices in London and Los Angeles specializing in creating awardwinning commercials, digital branded content, corporate films and multi-media entertainment around the world. Here is an example of thier amazing work!
BODY GLOVE 'FEEL' WITH TATIANA WESTON-WEBB Director Todd Grossman
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CHATEAUBRIAND: YOUR HOME AWAY FROM HOME
Writer Courtney Snyder @csnydzzz Photos Courtesy of Hotel Chateaubriand
xhausted from trotting city to city, we were looking forward to staying in a quaint hotel in the heart of Paris’s main attractions. We arrived and settled into Hotel Chateaubriand, located in The Golden Triangle in Paris's 8th Arrondissement between three of it’s most famous boulevards: the Avenue des Champs-Élysées, the Avenue Montaigne, and the Avenue George. This triangle attracts one of the world’s most glamorous crowds due to its fashion houses (Louis Vuitton, Dolce & Gabbana and Chanel), boutiques and restaurants. Costes, owner of extravagant restaurants such as L’Avenue is also located in the Golden Triangle. We not only felt relieved, but also experienced a classic ambiance at this historic hotel located down the surprisingly quiet side street (Rue Chateaubriand) of the famous Champs-Elysées. As we knew we
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were going to be here for a lengthy photo shoot, we were pleased to receive such supportive accommodations from each and every staff member. Right away we were immersed in an atmosphere highly conducive to creativity. One of the first things we noticed in the hotel was an elaborate winding staircase that portrayed whimsical style, with uncluttered lines, timeless white steps and a black metal finish. Directly above the staircase hangs an improvident chandelier finished with gold accents and white crystals, leaving guests with an exceptional first impression of Hotel Chateaubriand. The interior and décor alone — bedrooms featuring sheepskin throws, chic neutralcolored rugs and pillow shams — are enough to envelope us in luxury. The simple yet elegant contemporary art ties the many different textures and patterns together: cheetah print pillow, striped rugs, and golden vintage mirrors.
The tailored rooms have modern tan and grey furniture but the design is reminiscent of nineteenth century Paris. Trimmed with neat baseboards and moldings, each room feels well-edited, every piece of furniture has some sort of distinct purpose and meaning. The white marble on the bathroom floor, bathtub and sink contribute fresh detail that reimagines this historical building makes its guests feel like they are living life luxuriously. Mr. Romain Rio, owner of both Hotel Chateaubriand and the nearby hotel George Washington, (43 Rue Washington) has created an evolving style that incorporates both modern and classical pieces and leaves us captivated by every detail. We felt comfortable and at ease as we unwinded from our travels and prepared to get to work. We began shooting model Myrtille Revemont just outside of Hotel Chateaubriand. Myrtille is a true Parisian (avec un visage Français) whose beauty and aesthetic correlates perfectly with the design and impression of the hotel and its rich surroundings. Our discovery of this location is all thanks to Parisian photographer, NeO Tony Lee. Lee was extremely helpful in the production of the photo shoot, creating a behind the scenes fashion video and recommending only the best, most scenic shooting locations. Every time Lee stays in Paris (which is often) he resides at the Hotel Chateaubriand. “It’s my home,” he said and soon it felt like our home away from home as well.
Our work day was easy and enjoyable and we were able to refresh and relax in our dreamy, classical room after a long day of shooting. Another benefit of staying at the Hotel Chateaubriand is that it is not difficult to travel to any location from this base. This will enhance anyone’s overall Paris travel experience. The convenience of this location allowed us to travel at a swift pace from point A to point B with the Avenue George V Paris metro within three minute walking distance. We strongly recommend Hotel Chateaubriand to anyone looking for une vrai expérience Parisian. Allow this nostalgic Parisian destination to inspire you and your travels. ■ LE FA I R MA G A Z I NE | 1 5 9
AN INTERVIEW WITH
STEVE WEISSMAN NF L Net wo rk & Te nnis Channe l Spor ts c as te r Photographer Tracy Kahn @tracykahn Writer Madeline Rosene @madelinerosene Wardrobe Stylist Cristen Stefanelli @cestyle Groomer Sarah Huggins @mr.sarah Location Venice Beach
“ If there is something you really want,
make a plan and execute it. Goals without plans are just dreams.”
t’s Sunday morning brunch in Venice Beach. We just wrapped our photo shoot with Steve Weissman, NFL Network and Tennis Channel broadcaster. Graduate of the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University, former ESPN anchor, and now a proud yogi and Angeleno, Steve has a compelling background in sports reporting and has won numerous awards for his rich and colorful stories. Steve is wearing a necklace with SW19 engraved. SW19 holds significance to Steve as it represents both his initials and birth date, as well as the postal code of Wimbledon in London England. An old street musician plays a loud and slow cover of Hotel California, our shitake omelettes are cooked just right, and the almond milk cappuccinos are strong. Steve Weissman is focused and driven. He is one of those individuals who has always had a keen sense of clarity (even when it comes to what fashion brands he prefers. I see you, AllSaints jacket). He intuitively knows what he wants out of life and isn’t afraid to go after it. At age five, he discovered that he wanted to be a sportscaster and displayed unwavering determination to reach his goals. He enjoys helping others make their dreams come true as well. Last year, he gave the commencement speech at his high school and coincidentally enough, Steve helped judge the Miss Connecticut USA pageant in 2012 whose winner wound up competing with our cover star, Olivia Culpo (then, Miss Rhode Island). Steve packs a lot into a day — a sunrise photo shoot, interview, and then it’s off to Cincinnati to cover the Western and Southern Open.
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MR: As a trained journalist, do you like to write? Is writing a big part of what you do? SW: I love writing! It’s a huge part of what I do and enables me to be creative. I like to tell stories from a unique angle. Whether it’s figurative language or a fun social media post, I use my words to paint a picture and give the audience a new take on whatever story I’m covering. The cool thing about broadcasting is getting to write the copy you present on-air. Our words carry a lot of meaning. Whether it’s a text to a friend, an email to a co-worker or a graduation speech, we must be mindful of what we say. MR: Tell me about the first sportscaster you looked up to, the late Glenn Brenner... SW: Growing up in the Washington, D.C. area, I would watch Glenn Brenner give the sports news every night on Channel 9. When I was in 3r d grade, I was in a program called Thinking Opportunities for Kids (TOK). Once a week, they took us from my elementary school to a different school and we worked on a career project. I picked sportscasting. My mom said I learned how to read by reading the sports page of The Washington Post. I would memorize all the stats and my parent’s friends would always ask me my predictions on games.
SW: Warmth, sunshine and happiness! After leaving ESPN, I started working part-time at Tennis Channel. They would fly me out for assignments. A few months later, NFL Network hired me to host their morning show. I was living out of a hotel in Marina Del Rey from the end of July 2015 until mid-October. I didn’t spend one night in my bed in Connecticut. So when I came back, I made the decision to move full time. I didn’t have any work set in stone. I just knew I was always happy when I visited and wanted to see if that could happen all the time. The day after I moved to LA, I was back at NFL Network and signed contracts with both networks shortly after. I believe when you make a decision like that for your life, good things will follow because all of your energy is focused in that direction.
Our words carry a lot of meaning. Whether it’s a text to a friend, an email to a co-worker or a graduation speech, we must be mindful of what we say.
Luckily, I was able to interview Glenn Brenner for my project. I brought my mini tape recorder to the TV station and asked him what I needed to study to become a sportscaster. He was so kind and generous. I still have the project with his signed headshot. Glenn was witty, creative, and had a dynamic personality. He was SportsCenter before SportsCenter existed. He made it fun but also informative.
MR: For his time, Glenn Brenner took a lot of risks in his career (mangled star-spangled banner mashups, friendly and funny jabs at ego-consumed athletes) that ultimately led to changes in sportscasting and how news and entertainment are presented. How do you feel about risk taking in your field? SW: You take calculated risks. At the end of the day, you want to be natural. Each one of us is special in our own way. In television, that’s practically the only thing that sets you apart. So if that’s what you present on-air, you WILL be unique. Ironically, that’s not as easy as it sounds. In life, we don’t read off a teleprompter or talk into a camera. The people I respect most in this business are just completely themselves and don’t care what anybody thinks. MR: You were living in Connecticut, working for ESPN. What brought you out to Los Angeles?
MR: What is it about Los Angeles that you like so much?
SW: The healthy lifestyle. Sometimes, the air would literally hurt your face in Connecticut. Here the sun is out and you’re smiling all the time. I don’t even own a TV anymore and I’m on TV! I’d rather be outside playing tennis or volleyball or going to the beach. I started doing yoga in April of 2016. Some of my athlete friends who live in the South Bay go to Soho Yoga in Hermosa Beach. Richard Jefferson is one of the owners. It’s become my place and tribe and it’s completely transformed my body. It’s also a mental release. For that one hour, I don’t have my phone and try not to worry about the day to day issues that come up in life. I love the sweat and sculpt class. It’s in a hot yoga studio. There are weights and cardio involved so it’s a full body workout with savasana at the end. You’re sweating for the full 55 minutes and sometimes hours after! I also take classes at Rumble Boxing in West Hollywood, but try to get my other cardio exercise outside. I’d rather play tennis for three hours than run on the treadmill for 30 minutes. MR: Why do you suppose Medill is considered one of the best journalism schools in the country? SW: At Medill, you get a back bone in writing, ethics, and basic news. Whatever you choose to do, whether it’s sports, news, entertainment, magazines, or television, you have the solid foundation of journalistic values. A lot of people have communication degrees. I have friends in the business who were theater majors. Everyone has their own path and journey and I was lucky enough to go to the best broadcast journalism school in the country. The connections you make are massive. We call it the Medill mafia and it’s awesome to see so many successful journalists that have come from Northwestern.
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MR: You gave the commencement address at your alma mater, Springbrook High School in Silver Spring, Maryland. What was that experience like? SW: It was such an incredible honor. I love my hometown and was so flattered to get asked to come back and speak to the kids. I don’t know if they’ll remember anything I said, but I wanted the students to realize they can achieve anything in life. I focused on three areas. Be yourself, be kind and call your mom. If you can do those three things, I feel like you’ve put yourself in a good position for success. It was so cool to hear all of the students cheer when I quoted Kendrick Lamar, “be humble, sit down.” I’ll never forget those moments when I was able to connect with the graduates. We all have a responsibility to foster the next generation and I’m humbled to play a small part. MR: Your stories have won many awards. What are some of the topics you’ve covered? SW: The first story I ever reported was on ice fishing in Alpena, Michigan. In small markets, you cover everything. I got to do a story on 4-time national motocross champ Sarah Whitmore that got some recognition and helped me land my next job in Madison, Wisconsin. I did a feature on Wesley Matthews and his mother that was special. They were such a cool duo. For the stand-up to my story, Wesley actually dunked over me while I was sitting in a chair on the basketball court. He was a junior at Madison Memorial High School at the time. Now he plays for the Dallas Mavericks. That story earned first place for Sports Reporting by the Wisconsin Broadcasters Association. Since becoming a national broadcaster, I’ve been fortunate enough to report on the Super Bowl, Wimbledon, French Open, U.S. Open, NCAA Final Four and other awesome events! MR: There is so much travel involved in your career. What are some of your favorite places to go? SW: Definitely Paris — the food, the ambiance, the beauty — looking at the Eiffel Tower light up at night never gets old. I like the Hotel de Sers. My favorite place to eat is L’AVENUE. I had never experienced snails before eating at L’Avenue. Now I never go there without ordering snails! I love going to New York City as well. My brother, sister-in-law and niece live there so a trip to the U.S. Open adds extra meaning. I love eating at Nobu, Casa Mono and Babbo. Getting drinks at the Aviary is always awesome! When I’m at Wimbledon, I love getting breakfast at Brew and having strawberries and cream at the All England Club. The BNP Paribas Open at Indian Wells is also one of my favorites. There’s a Nobu at one of the courts! And living at the beach, the desert is a beautiful contrast. MR: Who are your teams?
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SW: All of the DC teams. The Redskins, Capitals, Wizards and Orioles. I’m a huge Northwestern fan after going to school there. Go Cats!! Seeing the Capitals win the Stanley Cup this year was amazing! I’ll never forget going to see them play on my 8t h birthday. It was Game 7 of their playoff series against the New York Islanders. It went 4 overtimes and didn’t end until nearly 2 in the morning. They lost, but they won my heart forever. Now that Lebron is in LA, maybe I’ll hop on the Lakers bandwagon! MR: Do you have advice for people who are entering the competitive sports broadcast industry? SW: Be willing to go anywhere. Be focused on what you want. I truly believe that anyone can do anything. You have to want it more than everyone else. It’s a combination of talent, hard work and luck. Alpena, Michigan was the 3r d smallest TV market in the country and my salary was $14,000 a year. You have to be willing to sacrifice friends, weekends and holidays. I don’t remember the last time I had a weekend off, but I love what I do. If you’re passionate about your job, it doesn’t seem like work. No job is perfect, but I’m so grateful to be able to talk about sports on TV for a living. Every time I’m in the studio, I take a moment to look around and think to myself, “This is awesome!” MR: Do you think you have an advantage because you have known exactly what you wanted to do for so long? SW: I don’t view it that way because that’s just how I am. Other people might see it that way, but to me, it’s normal. I still had to work and sacrifice to reach my goals. When I graduated college, I had a seven-year plan to become a national sportscaster. I was a little delayed. It took exactly eight years from my first day in Alpena, Michigan to my first day at ESPN. MR: What would you do if you weren’t a sportscaster? SW: Maybe be a sports agent or an actor or artist, something fun. My college internships were always at cool jobs. I would be working in some form of entertainment. Maybe I’d be a chef? I love food. And then combine that with TV and become the next Food Network star. It would have to be something where I could be creative. MR: Did you ever question your path or your decisions along the way? SW: There were plenty of times when I questioned myself. I think we all have those thoughts from time to time. But there was never a moment when I didn’t believe I would achieve my goals. You have to be decisive or you’ll be stuck in purgatory forever. If there is something you really want, make a plan and execute it. Goals without plans are just dreams. ■
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Rad APPS Our favorite apps right now!
Balagan It’s summer and you’re looking for the perfect drinking game to play with friends! Look no further. Balagan by Drink-O-Tron Games offers a racy, cheeky twist on average drinking games, allowing you to get to know your friends on a whole new level. From “never have I ever,” to “truth or dare,” “would you rather,” and even “karaoke,” you’ll never be bored while drinking with friends again! Get the games going and the conversations sparked. Turn up this summer with this free app. It’s definitely worth the download. Download Balagan at drinkotron.com/balagan.
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Hud Tired of swiping? Us too. On HUD (Hookup Dating) instead of swiping one by one you can view all of your possible matches at once getting rid of that swipe-fatigue. HUD can be used online or via the app and all communication is FREE. You can message whoever you want, whenever you want without waiting for a mutual like-back. The online dating world can be very intimidating, but HUD offers multiple features to improve the female user experience. Female-friendly features include an automatic photo blur, and filtered inbox chat requests, making this app fun and safe for everyone!
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Clementine Clementine is an app for women who have low self-esteem, or suffer with anxiety, and would like to feel calm and confident. Through hypnotherapy recordings and mantras that pop up on your phone, Clementine really can change your life. It’s helped women to face their biggest fears: public speaking or work presentations. And others to unwind after a particularly difficult day at work, or with the kids. Clementine is improving women’s lives every single day, which is why The Guardian voted it one of the seven apps every woman should own. Sign up today, and get your first month free.
UseCrypt Messenger This is probably the coolest app you’ve ever heard of. The first messenger that is safer than a face-to-face conversation. Created by the world-class cryptographers. Fast, simple and fully secured conversations, whether it is a text, voice call or multimedia. What makes UseCrypt Messenger so good? It’s the only messenger with features that guarantee true privacy. It’s able to check if your phone is hacked. Besides, it protects your data, contacts and message history on the phone. But on the server it stores and collects… nothing. The encryption can’t be turned off and if you need to erase all data from a device, you can use your “panic code”. Ok, but why all the fuss? Privacy used to be obvious, today it must be protected.
DISCOVER MORE OF EUROPE be whisked away by high speed train
Experience the thrill of high speed rail as you journey throughout Europe. High speed trains offer exceptional comfort, quality, amenities, and of course, speeds of up to 300km/186mph. Getting to your destination quickly means more time to explore. Depending on the class of service chosen, many high speed trains offer WiFi, welcome drinks, snacks, meals, newspapers, lounge access at the station, and more.
Some of Europe’s most popular high speed trains include: AVE (Spain) Eurostar (Belgium, France, the Netherlands, UK) France-Spain High Speed (France, Spain) ICE (Austria, Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, Switzerland) Italo (Italy) LeFrecce (Italy) TGV (Belgium, France, Germany, Italy) TGV Lyria (France, Switzerland) Thalys (Belgium, France, Germany, the Netherlands) Virgin Trains (UK)
High speed trains—the only way to fly through Europe ©Rail Europe North America Inc. 2018. All Rights Reserved. SOT CA#2053098-20 • SOT WA# 601486663 • SOT FLA# ST38 042 Registration as a seller of travel does not constitute approval by the State of California. Rail Europe North America Inc., incorporated under Laws of Delaware, 333 Westchester Ave., Suite W2200, White Plains, NY 10604, USA. Photo credits: Deutsche Bahn AG / Georg Wagner; Eurostar
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