A Japanese Retreat That Brings New Meaning to Forest Bathing

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Eat This

Experimental and theatrical are among the words commonly used to describe the chef Paul Pairet’s culinary vision at Ultraviolet, his triple Michelin-star restaurant in Shanghai. But for his first project in France since the early 2000s, which opens Jan. 25 at the Hôtel de Crillon in Paris, the ambitions are more modest: perfectly executed, unpretentious French classics. Replacing the hotel’s former Brasserie d’Aumont and men’s grooming space, Nonos, with its moody interior by Tristan Auer, is Pairet’s take on a modern French steakhouse (the name means little bone in children’s French). “I wanted to revive a retro-chic format of steakhouse dining from the ’60s and ’70s where the grill was front and center, servers came to the table with trolleys to slice meat and cheese, and dishes had broad appeal but were enhanced with the best products available,” explains the Perpignan-born Pairet. The menu is focused on familiar favorites ranging from onion soup and cheese soufflés to traditional dishes like seafood vol-au-vent. Comestibles, the deli area, will serve up snacks such as deviled eggs, pâté en croûte and Gascon cured ham. “Traditional French food is back in a big way across Paris,” Pairet says. “To do it right in an iconic setting like this — it’s a chef’s dream.” rosewoodhotels.com

The British-born designer and photographer Shouya Grigg is on a quest to create a new style of Japanese hospitality with his property Shiguchi, which opened quietly during lockdown last May. Located two miles away from Niseko, a ski destination on the northernmost island of Hokkaido, Shiguchi is made up of five guest villas that are restored kominkas, or traditional Japanese houses often built in rural areas. (The name Shiguchi refers to the time-honored Japanese method of constructing temples, shrines and kominkas using hand-carved joinery rather than nails.) The original timber frames remain, while thatched roofs were replaced with metal to handle the snow. Open layouts are divided with shoji sliding doors featuring Grigg’s monochromatic photographs of Hokkaido’s landscapes printed on washi paper. Ink paintings, antique and contemporary ceramics and a selection of books are thoughtfully arranged alongside wood-burning fireplaces with a mix of vintage and custom-made furniture. Each villa has access to its own natural hot spring, or onsen, with a tub — or in the case of the Ka villa, two tubs — made of stone or hinoki wood that look out onto the surrounding forest. Dining can be done privately — the villas have their own kitchens — or at Somoza, the adjacent restaurant, cafe and gallery that features seasonal dishes using foraged items as well as ingredients from the property’s vegetable garden. From $500 including breakfast, shiguchi.com.

Covet This

Come Jan. 18, the luxury brand Loro Piana will debut its newest homeware line in an eclectic apartment tucked away in Paris’s Sixth Arrondissement, where attendees of the citywide design event Paris Déco Off can see an array of fabrics and furniture in a salon-style interior. “It’s a bit unusual,” says Francesco Pergamo, the director of Loro Piana interiors, about the choice of showcasing the offerings in a residential apartment. Yet it’s apt: The collection is a homage to the return of city life after years of the pandemic. Fabrics such as mohair velvet would be just as fitting in a Milanese cocktail bar, while a selection of patterns — plaids, chevrons and checks in blues and greens — are drawn from ’50s fashion trends. For more neutral tones, there are also undyed fabrics such as the brand’s proprietary Pecora Nera, made of wool sourced from dark merino sheep in New Zealand, and its Cashmere Raw, from the underfleece of the Capra hircus goat. But perhaps most enticing is the line’s Igusa collection, which draws inspiration from traditional Japanese tatami floor mats, bringing the ancient hand-loomed weaving practice off the ground and onto walls. us.loropiana.com

See This

It feels like art is everywhere in Paris, but the Left Bank neighborhood of Saint-Germain-des-Prés has a special connection to it. Its cobblestone streets and cafes have sheltered artists and writers like Pablo Picasso, Ernest Hemingway, Juliette Gréco and Eugène Delacroix (whose Saint-Germain apartment is now a museum dedicated to his work), and the famous Beaux-Arts de Paris school sprawls across five acres in the heart of the neighborhood. Now, there’s a new place reflecting the area’s creative inclinations: Hôtel Dame des Arts. Those who enter under its oxidized metal-and-glass marquise canopy will discover a flamed black granite welcome desk with a sculptural wood relief and bespoke seating by the designer Raphael Navot, including his famed moon sofa. Navot, who recently received Maison & Objet’s 2023 designer of the year award, shaped the aesthetic of the entire 109-room property. He was inspired by local artists, Nouvelle Vague films and the salons of yesteryear. The result is custom furnishings featuring rippled blond wood, cast aluminum and neutral textiles accented with blues and greens. The dark oak floors have been flame-charred and a third of the rooms have balconies that overlook the skyline. Each of the hotel’s 700 unique pieces of art — in simple frames on a small shelf above the headboard, and hanging in the common areas — has links to Saint-Germain. The restaurant, which opens onto a plant-filled inner courtyard, is led by the chef Othoniel Alvarez Castaneda, whose menu combines contemporary Mexican cuisine with Asian influences in dishes like Brittany oysters with spicy chile oil and yuzu kosho seasoning. Also afoot: a rooftop bar with 360-degree city views. Hôtel Dames des Arts opens Feb. 1, rooms from $337, damedesarts.com.

Upcycling, the practice of reworking old garments so that they become new ones, has been increasingly embraced by fashion designers around the world. Whether driven by considerations of their environmental impact or a desire to breathe new life into vintage or deadstock clothing, a trio of brands have made the method their own. Shinichiro Ishibashi, the designer of the Japanese label Kuon, grew up in Iwate Prefecture with his mother, who is a certified patchwork instructor and organizes local workshops on the craft. A project in junior high school led him to sew a bag from a garment he had outgrown, which instigated his interest in boro, a term that roughly translates to “rags” and refers to the centuries-old technique of patching fabric scraps together to form new material. Kuon, which launched in 2016, now offers a range of garments and accessories crafted in the boro style. Antonio Muniz and Sam Finger of the Mutt Museum, a New York City-based space that shows fine art as well as their clothing brand, were also inspired by Japanese traditions — namely kintsugi, the art of repairing fragmented pottery with gold lacquer to highlight, rather than hide, imperfections. Extending this idea to clothing, the pair cut vintage garments, whether ribbed tank tops or tailored suiting, into jigsaw-puzzle-piece forms that are resewn with conspicuous zigzag seams to accentuate their reformation. Growing up across the Atlantic, the designer Adam Jones was uninspired by the limited shopping options in his rural hometown, Froncysyllte, Wales, and was encouraged by his grandmother to amend charity-shop finds to his liking. Now based in London, where he designs his namesake brand, Jones still sources vintage textiles locally, which lends a British bent to his offerings. Drawn to ’70s chintz, his brand has found hits in its “grandad vests” made from beer towels sourced from pubs, as well as tops made from animal-printed tea towels.

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