Hotel du Lac, by Anita Brookner
Last week I bought quite a few books by new-to-me authors, one of them being Hotel du Lac, by Anita Brookner, a novelist and art historian – my admiration is tenth-folded! I hadn’t heard of her, but the obviously avid reader lady seller at the car boot had a large and intriguing mix of authors and books and I somehow knew I will get my hands on a few treasures.
I wasn’t wrong. This book was the first one in a while that really made me want to be able to just sit down and read it cover to cover in one go (it must be said, it is under 200 pages long). I was very drawn to the setting, of course, as it all happens in a hotel and I am fascinated with these establishments and the idea of living in one for a while.
But on top of that, it is the moody and mysterious atmosphere, the quiet luxury and peculiarity of the hotel and the complex female characters that somehow made for a cosy read for me. The world of the hotel is small and from the rich descriptions, you feel like a guest too. All I wanted was to immerse myself in the story.
I did not care that much for the underlining theme, which seems to be love, nor for the ending, which I found too romantic in motivation for my current taste. Still, this was the perfect end of the summer book!
The Savoy Documentary Series
Perhaps under the spell of Hotel du Lac, last weekend I finally started watching The Savoy, a documentary series about what goes on behind the scenes at Britain’s first luxury hotel. I am finding it a perfect comfort-watch, filled with characters that I would love to meet and work with and situations that are often funny, but also give a glimpse into what running such a hotel entails.
Source – Head Butler at the Savoy, Sean Davorean
I will say that there are certain elements that I wouldn’t have included, for the reputation of The Savoy hotel, no matter how funny they must seem. But this is an issue for their PR team to deal with, and unfortunately, I am not part of it (yet?!)
Next on my list is the intriguing book about The Secret Life of the Savoy!
Cultivating our Sense of Awe
This article in the Harvard Business Review is written with the workplace in mind, but the topic and the scientific research findings shared are very easily transferable to everyday life. It is all about cultivating our sense of awe, which can leave us inspired and energised, more open towards others and their experiences, less stuck in our heads, it can make us feel more satisfied and boost our well-being, it helps us explore new ways of thinking, as well as build relationships.
University of Michigan psychologist Ethan Kross defines awe as “the wonder we feel when we encounter something powerful that we can’t easily explain.” Often the things which bring us awe have an element of vastness and complexity.
It makes me think of art, music or a brilliant book, as well as the sky at night and flowers blooming. I like the idea of an ‘awe walk’, and it should be easy enough for most of us to try. How about this weekend?
Dolce and Gabbana Alta Moda 2021 Show
When I started seeing news about the Dolce and Gabbana Alta Moda show at the beginning of the week, I went to check the fashion calendar. I was sure no Fashion Week was on at the moment, certainly not Semaine de La Haute Couture, as I wrote about it only a few weeks ago.
That’s how I learned that Dolce and Gabbana have, since 2012, presented this show in various iconic locations in Italy, outside of the very french and rigorous Haute Couture world. This year, they chose Venice, and the 100-looks collection was shown in the Piazzetta San Marco, a fashion debut for this all-famous landmark.
The aesthetic was opulent, mixing rich materials, precious and elaborate accessories, royal colours and styles. I am always inspired by the Dolce and Gabbana collections to personalize my clothes, to make them unique through embellishments and details. This time is no exception!
This week in decor, I am here to tell you that wall plates are not popular only in my mind (and kitchen!) This article on SheerLuxe, which I read religiously, by the way, brought upon this realisation and it did wonders to my old lady in disguise confidence. I know I often have strange tastes that could qualify as dated, and it’s always good to see that just every once in a while I might in fact be ahead of a mainstream trend bringing back a classic.
This exquisite find I am sure I subconsciously owe to my mom, who’s always had folk-rustic or flowery plates adorn the walls of her own kitchen. Thank you, mom!
Iris Apfel Quote
In honour of Iris Apfel celebrating her 100th birthday this week, I wanted to share one of her many memorable quotes. Although she is an ‘accidental’ fashion icon, as she calls herself, this one is not about style or clothes, but it’s about ageing and having a positive outlook on this whole process. I particularly love the end The alternative to old is not very pleasant.
What an amazing perspective, don’t you think? I never even thought it’s as simple of that. If you’re not ageing, you’re already dead, so which would you prefer? I can’t wait to have a chance to use this and see people’s reactions!
A Bunch of Sundays
Source: All images via A bunch of Sundays on Instagram
The perfect flowery find to wrap up this week’s letter is one meant to deliver inspiration and colour to you not just today, but every Sunday from now on. If you’d like to get a weekly virtual delivery of a beautiful flower bouquet photographed against a colourful door, A Bunch of Sundays is your personal curator. This idea ticks so many boxes on my checklist, but the main ones are beauty in simplicity and careful execution.
If this letter has offered you a moment of inspiration, kindly forward it to others who might enjoy it too. And if you have been forwarded it, indulge in all previous Miss Onion’s Exquisite Finds and subscribe to the weekly letter.