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An Elemental Retreat on the Wild Oaxacan Coast
For over 20 years, the Mexican creative director Alan V. Favero has vacationed on the Oaxacan coast. Eventually, he purchased his own land in the fishing village of San Agustinillo so that he could build Monte Uzulu. An hour south of Puerto Escondido and perched atop a lush hill with views of the Pacific Ocean, the minimalist resort was conceptualized by architect Mariana Ruiz in collaboration with lighting designer Paola Jose of the creative studio Sombra and Favero’s interior and industrial design firm, Taller Lu’um, which routinely collaborates with more than 15 different artisan groups across Mexico to preserve centuries-old techniques. Built with an eye to maintaining the natural balance of the local ecosystem, the 11 bohemian suites offer sun-drenched terraces and feature sustainable macuilí wood furniture carved by local carpenters, straw lamps and handmade basketwork made in Michoacán, along with cobalt cotton textiles woven in nearby Teotitlán del Valle. After a weeklong residency at the property, mother-son duo Karen Drijanski and Eduardo Plaschinski (of Niddo, Mexico City’s most revered cafe) inspired the menu at the property’s restaurant, Temporada, which is made up of dishes that highlight the flavors of Oaxaca’s generous bounty. Rooms start at $128, monteuzulu.com
Rosie Assoulin’s New Raw Wine, Vivanterre
A couple of years ago, the New York-based fashion designer Rosie Assoulin got bitten by the orange wine bug. “I became obsessive and would look for it everywhere,” she recalled. She told her husband and business partner, Max — the duo work not only on Assoulin’s popular namesake brand but also their latest clothing line, By Any Other Name — that they were going to make their own orange wine one day. “He ignored me,” she added with a laugh. Skip ahead to around this time last year, and the pair were in the Auvergne region of France, examining the grape harvest. This week, they are launching Vivanterre with two debut vintages: a Gamay and an orange wine. They worked with natural winemakers Patrick Bouju and Justine Loiseau, as well as Cedric Nicaise (the wine director of Eleven Madison Park) to refine the taste. And they asked Omar Sosa of Apartamento magazine to design the labels, which evoke the sun as well as the terroir and the crunchy wax seals of older wines. For the Assoulins, making their own organic vintages makes perfect sense in this moment. “We want to connect with other human beings — we’re aware of meals and family time, and what sharing a bottle of wine means to us,” said Assoulin, who noted that Vivanterre translates to “living earth” in French. “Almost everyone has, in some way, a potager (kitchen garden), even if it’s just scallions growing in a Mason jar on a windowsill. We’re all reckoning with nature, and it’s something we need to make the center of our conversations.” From $30, vivanterre.com.
Leather Unisex Sandals Built for Comfort and Style
Gender inclusivity in fashion has made great strides, but footwear always seems to be one step behind. Rarely does a shoe come in a full-size range for all potential customers. Enter Emme Parsons, whose Los Angeles-based, eponymous footwear line is already admirable for its elegant craftsmanship and commitment to sustainability. Parsons recently revisited two of her best-selling styles, the Bari and the Simone — both names are of Italian origin (where Parsons’s production takes place) and have historically been gender nonspecific — updating them with thicker straps and a welted leather fussbett (“footbed” in German), a 19th-century innovation that replaces the shoe’s flat insole with a form-fitting alternative. Fussbetts are quite comfortable and healthier for feet in motion. What’s more, when Parsons learned she could produce both the Bari and Simone in sizes up to IT46, she knew it was a perfect opportunity to offer her well-designed staples to the men and women whom her current shoes didn’t fit. “Our customers are drawn to styles that are comfort-focused and easy to slip on and off but still feel refined and elevated,” she said. As a cross-department shopper myself, it’s a relief to know my days of longing for a testosterone-free sandal are over. emmeparsons.com.
4 Restoring Lip Balms for the End of Summer
Though now often hidden under masks, lips still need special attention — especially in the summer, when sun and saltwater take a toll. A good place to start is with a versatile moisturizing balm like Supergoop’s Play Lip Balm, which has SPF 30 and comes in a clear formula ideal for layering over lip shades. Victoria Beckham Beauty’s Bitten Lip Tint has a light but supple gel formula containing squalane and sodium hyaluronate, which sinks in (meaning no transfer onto masks) for a rosy flush. An intense hydrating wash of color can be found in the San Francisco Bay Area-based brand Iris & Romeo’s Power Peptide Lip Balm. Rich in biomimetic peptides that stimulate collagen production, the balm also gives lips a more voluminous appearance. For lips that may already be burned or severely dried from the elements, Neova SmartSkincare, a brand dedicated to healing and preventing photoaged skin, developed Cu3 Lip Repair, to be used post-procedure or sun exposure. A thick layer worn at night seals in moisture and will leave overexposed lips looking remarkably better by morning.
Fine Jewelry Charms Inspired by Finger Foods
The Williamsburg-based fine jeweler Caitlin Mociun has built a loyal customer base for her Bauhaus-inspired designs with Victorian touches (think turquoise, diamonds and yellow gold for an engagement ring, and antique glass intaglio seals for a necklace) made entirely with ethically sourced or vintage gemstones. Not too long ago, Mociun began creating limited-edition charms made to resemble miniature versions of her favorite foods. Previous iterations included New York street food (on offer were diamond doughnuts, golden hot dogs and slices of pizza) and pool party fare (gold fried chicken and pearl-and-diamond encrusted shucked oysters). The latest menu options in what Mociun playfully calls her Fine Foods Collection are all crudités and finger foods: dainty diamond-coated carrots and radishes, avocados with tiger’s-eye as the pit (the stone fruit consists of two charms, so you can gift one half to a friend or loved one), as well as olives made from olivine, grapes made from grape garnet and diamond-studded pink shrimps (in rose gold, obviously, to approximate the look of the cooked shellfish). Each charm (only 82 were made in total) comes with a slender book of matching cocktails designed by the photographer and mixologist Vivian Cromwell. “I wanted the charms to be really pretty, to be a proper nod to the food they’re referencing,” said Mociun, who added that she is always hoping to delight women who are buying jewelry for themselves. mociun.com.