As the creative director of Chantecaille, the New York–based makeup, skincare and fragrance company, Olivia Chantecaille is often jetting around the world. Of course, both beauty and travel are in her DNA: her mother, Sylvie, is French-born and pioneered make-up lines at Estée Lauder in the late 1970s. Olivia, who also has served as a chairperson for such institutions as Save Venice and Young Patrons of the Louvre, travels extensively. Earlier this summer, she visited St. Barth’s, Tokyo, Napa, East Hampton and Washington D.C. in the course of three weeks. Here, she shares her highlights from these trips, as well as imparts beauty tips for those on the go.
What are your favorite travel destinations and why?
Some of my favorite travel destinations are: St. Barth’s, in the French West Indies where I was married; Singita game reserves in South Africa for the most spectacular safaris; and my family’s home in East Hampton, Long Island, where I can bury my feet in the grass and watch the ducks nesting in the hydrangea bushes.
What are your favorite hotels and why?
A few of my favorite hotels are the Hotel de Russie in Rome, because it is the epitome of chic Italian elegance, and I love the inner courtyard and garden; the Park Hyatt in Tokyo because of its impeccable accommodations, crowning view of the city and grand pool in the clouds; Cap Juluca in Anguilla for the clear turquoise water and stunning demi-lune white beach dotted by simple, white Moorish villas…I feel completely serene while on vacation there.
What are some of the highlights from your recent trips?
In Japan, it was the amazing visit to Kamakura City, southwest of Tokyo, which was the political center of Japan in 1192. While there, I visited the Great Buddha, a bronze statue of Amida Buddha cast in 1252 and Kamakura’s most important shrine, Tsurugaoka Hachimangu built in 1063 and dedicated to the Samurai. We also had some time to swing by the beach where I got a kick out of everyone paddle boarding.
The highlight of my most recent trip to St. Barth’s was an exhilarating hike to Washing Machine off the cliffs of Le Toiny on the southeast side of the Island. I followed this path, which disappears often, gripping to the sides of the cliffs overlooking the tumultuous ocean waves. This eventually led us by several curious goats and to the magical pools of water buried in the rocks.
What are some of your favorite places on Capri?
I love the Punta Tragara Hotel because of the phenomenal view of the Faraglioni rocks, La Fontelina beach club for a refreshing swim off the rocks and a delicious lunch of local fish, drinks at the JK Place hotel overlooking Marina Grande, and dinner at [Tod’s founder] Diego Della Valle’s villa in Anacapri, where you are truly transported to another world.
What are some of your favorite spas?
Naturopathica in East Hampton for an intensely therapeutic massage during some weekend “down” time. The Spa at La Reserve de Ramatuelle in the South of France is SO relaxing…and the best way to complete any holiday! And, of course, the Chantecaille Energy Spa at Barneys NY for the most rejuvenating and lifting facials.
How do your travels inspire your work?
Everywhere I travel I find inspiration for new colors, new products and conservation projects. For example, the glorious roses in the gardens of Dumbarton Oaks in Washington D.C. inspired my newest Lip Chic shades and a sunny lunch at La Fontelina in Capri inspired the need for our new Protection Naturelle SPF 46 PA+++ sheer powder.
What do you never leave home without?
I always have my Poudre Delicate pressed powder, a pouch of various Lip Chics (my favorite right now is Bourbon Rose) and Brilliant Glosses, a mini bottle of Rose de Mai Rosewater, Protection Naturelle SPF 46 PA . In case I have to go out after work, I carry a Faux Cils mascara and Le Stylo eye marker for definition.
What is your most treasured possession from abroad?
The engagement ring that my husband gave me while we were vacationing in Anguilla
Where did you find your last bargain/your latest splurge? At the end-of-season sales on St. Barth’s, I found amazing dresses from such designers as Lanvin and Giambattista Valli. My latest splurge was also on the island…at the Hermès store.
Where are you dreaming of going next? Where will you go next?