Karen Walker’s art of cool travel

Karen Walker is the queen of cool so naturally we wanted to know where she stayed when she was in the south of France working on her trio of fragrances A, B and C.

KW bottles

During the development of her new fragrances, which launched on April 15, Walker worked with French perfume house Charabot in Grasse, custodians of the craft of creating fragrances for hundreds of years.

Parfum web

“Years ago my friend Katie Lockhart told me that if I was ever near Nice I must go to St-Paul-de-Vence and stay at La Colombe d’Or so the choice of hotel was non-negotiable,” Walker says. “As soon as I knew we were going to Grasse I said we had to stay there.”

Hotel view for web

The small, family-owned hotel first opened in 1920 just outside the old city walls in the medieval town of St-Paul-de-Vence.

Hotel for web

“In the early 20th Century it was a favourite spot for many of the world’s greatest artists and they all paid in contra so the hotel’s overflowing with the most wonderful artwork by many of my favourites – a Miro above our table at dinner, a Picasso across the dining room, a Chagall just behind us, a Leger in the breakfast courtyard, a Calder by the pool. I could go on and on. There are literally hundreds and hundreds of works by my favourite artists there,” Walker says.

Below Karen Walker creative director Mikhail Gherman sits beside a portrait of Pablo Picasso.

Mikhail for web

“Add to that that the hotel is, of course, delightful and stunning, the food incredible, the setting unbeatable and the history and roll-call of the fabulous and famous who’ve stayed there beyond impressive,” says Walker. “What makes it all especially magical though is that it’s still family owned, intimate, non-corporate and completely genuine. The lady serving breakfast is also in a photograph, as a little girl, hanging out with Picasso around the family’s dining table. It’s not yet been knocked from its number one spot on my best hotels list. I’ll definitely be back there as soon as I can.”

Walker at hotel

Inside the Autumn/Winter issue of MiNDFOOD STYLE

The second issue of MiNDFOOD STYLE is set to hit newsstands on Monday April 20, 2015. A brand extension to the successful MiNDFOOD, the Autumn/Winter 2015 issue celebrates the “Art of Travel” across more than 320 glossy pages.

The edition journeys to colourful global destinations, with four unique covers from different corners of the world. Cover fashion features include: Central Otago, Sydney, Paris & Hong Kong.

“Building on the success of the launch issue of MiNDFOOD STYLE, we wanted the “Art of Travel” to shine through in the Autumn/Winter issue. While we still have an eye on emerging local trends and designers, the second issue of MiNDFOOD STYLE takes things up a notch with a truly global flair,” says owner and editor-in-chief of MiNDFOOD and MiNDFOOD STYLE, Michael McHugh.

MiNDFOOD STYLE is published twice a year as Spring/Summer and Autumn/Winter magazine editions. Completely integrated across a range of platforms, MiNDFOOD STYLE also has a dynamic online site, under the umbrella of, as well as a weekly newsletter, Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest sites.

Since launch, MiNDFOOD STYLE has hosted and sponsored a range of events around the country, including the recent Britomart Fashion Sessions and iD Dunedin Fashion Week.

“The response to the launch issue of MiNDFOOD STYLE has been incredible. With the Autumn/Winter 2015 issue we’re offering readers even more inspiring reading, stunning photography and exclusive stories across the latest in fashion, shopping, lifestyle, beauty, travel and more. It’s the ultimate showcase to everything that is wonderful about the world of style,” says McHugh.

MiNDFOOD STYLE A/W 2015 is on sale Monday April 20, 2015.

MiNDFOOD STYLE AUTUMN/WINTER 2015 issue, on sale APRIL 20.

For an interview with editor-in-chief Michael McHugh, please contact Phillipa on +64 9 362 0770 or [email protected]