A former resident of Paris, London and Barcelona, French-born Henri extols the virtues of the Lisbon lifestyle. Happiest taking photos or relaxing by the sea with his wife and three children, the Director of Sales & Marketing at Four Seasons Hotel Ritz Lisbon loves the city for its unapologetic enjoyment of life.
“People here take the time to do things that residents of other cities overlook. From watching the boats sail by to driving to a deserted beach for a dip at lunchtime, it’s a beautiful place to savor life’s finer details.”
Let’s get to know him:
Favourite vacation destination outside of Portugal:
* Formentera,for sure. I used to go there as a kid with a huge tribu of friends of my parents. We stayed in a beautiful white washed house overlooking Ibiza, without electricity, only lit with candles, and we had to get freezing water from a well to have a shower, riding a bicycle to move around. Formentera has the best beaches and “calas” with turquoise water. My heaven on earth even if nowadays it is not as desert as it used to be.
I am actually hesitant to mention it to avoid having even more people there…
* St Jean de Luz: Another childhood place where I still go with my wife and kids every summer. I have the best memories of crossing the Spanish border to go parties when I was a teenager, the “toro de Fuego” on Place louis XIV twice a week and the “batailles des confetis“, the festive ambiance of the Basque people. The genuinely friendly and authentic people and their love for good living (food, sport, friendship…) The promenade every evening along the bay and all along the way to St Barbe with an ice cream and the daily swim with my kids to the pontoons.
* For Skiing, the French Pyrenees, Gourettes close to my native town of Pau. Far away from the fashionable Alps. More low-key and family friendly.
– Music: What in my Ipad
* Jazz: The souvenir of going to sleep in my bedroom listening to my father playing “as time goes by” among others on the piano in the living room…
* Lounge music
* A few themes from great movies such as the Last Emperor, Out of Africa, A Opera theme I love from the movie Hannibal called Vide Cor Meum from Hans Zimmer
* No classical I’m afraid. My mother tried hard though, putting classical music in the car while driving to school, but it just did not captivate me…
* Portuguese: Ana Moura and Madredeus
* Business: Zegna, Canali mostly
* Casual: Kind of preppy, jeans & a shirt and a nice cashmere
* If I could afford it, more of Cuccinelli and Loro Piana
I genuinely prefer to buy stuff of great quality to pass from one generation to another, rather than true fashion. The advertising for Patek Philippe is a good illustration of how I see it: “You never really own a Patek Philippe. You merely take care of it for the next generation.”
I still wear things from my grandfather…
– Icon of Elegance:
* Pierce Brosnan (James Bond time and Thomas Crown Affair)
* Peter Beard
* Kevin Costner
* My grandfather, 1m90 and always super British, elegant both in style and attitude.
* Paulino Spectacles: An amazing Portuguese handmade brand
* Really not a priority, just a utility, a comfortable one for me (15 years old) and a family one for my wife to fit three kids and take us on long trips…
* If you really push me, would say Aston Martin
* Tons of rice and pasta, fish and seafood and litres of olive oil!!!
* Beef rarely and only if it is amazing beef
* Pata Negra ham: a real drug for me! Can’t stop eating when faced with a nice leg…
– Restaurants in Portugal:
* 100 maneiras
* A Travessa
* The sardine Sushi at Seame
* Solar do Presunto
* Ritz Bar sushi lounge
* Porto de Santa Maria for Carabineiros, Grilled seabass and Clams bulha pato
* Tennis is my sport
* Taking pictures even if I have no clue about technique. Would love to have the time to take a course one day. Am also a big fan of Peter Beard’s pictures.
* I am a magazine addict. Among my favourites:
The Good life (amazing bi monthly French magazine)
* Old Chronomat Breitling from my grandfather
* Day to day Rolex Submariner
– Favourite shops in Portugal:
A Vida Portuguesa – a paradise for those craving Portuguese traditions. Select from genuine, thought-provoking products that celebrate a centuries-old Iberian lifestyle: handmade woven blankets, eau de cologne, colorfully wrapped soaps (including Oprah’s favorite allnatural Claus Porto soap), china swallows, waxes, candies, embroidered boxes, cook books, liquors, teas, chocolates, whimsical Bordalo Pinheiro plates, ceramics and much more, all beautifully presented in the atmospheric surrounds of a former 19th century soap factory. Authentic shopping at its immersive best.
Luvaria Ulisses – a one-of-a-kind glove shop, so small that only one person fits in at a time, where you can get some of the finest-quality handmade leather gloves.