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April 19 2014

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Browsing Kenzo, Missoni, Mara Hoffman, And Comme des Garçons—Without Leaving Your Hotel

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Holiday travel tends to be about relaxing, not shopping, but just because there’s no Colette or Dover Street Market in sight doesn’t mean there’s no way to bring home a worthy souvenir. Hotel boutiques, formerly enclaves of sunscreen and snow globes, have been stepping up in recent years, offering selections to rival department stores—often with much closer proximity to the beach.

At hip Caribbean enclave Viceroy Anguilla, hotel retailer Seaside Luxe is building a zigzag-print tent on the beach in partnership with Missoni Home. The tent opens Christmas Day and features retractable walls and loungers where guests can catch some sun and browse items like Mara Hoffman caftans, Eugenia Kim sun hats, Jennifer Fisher jewelry, and a $350 limited-edition Missoni Home tote (above). “The guests here are buying items they’re going to wear [on vacation] and at home,” said Seaside Luxe founder Lee Ann Sauter.

At the Faena Hotel boutique in Buenos Aires, creative director Ximena Caminos curates a mix of high-end items with a Latin flare. She cites Panama hats by California-based brand Greenpacha and Brazilian bikinis by Nina Swim as must-have holiday items. “We do well with classic Argentine items like alpaca ponchos, traditional silver pieces, and carved crystal objets,” said Caminos, noting that she maintains the store’s local flavor by stocking a selection of wares by Argentine designers.

Just a hop north at the Standard Shop in the Standard Hotel Miami, Comme des Garçons’ limited-edition holiday star pouches are the big get of the season. Also on hand are quirky home items like Maison Martin Margiela’s melting wax candles and the Berlin Boombox (above), a modern MP3 system disguised as an old-school boom box by Berlin-based designer Axel Pfaender. “We love small gifts that are easy to travel with, such as jewelry and accessories and special, rare hostess gifts,” said the store’s director of retail, Denise Downing.

For those celebrating a classic New York Christmas, Opening Ceremony at the Ace Hotel is offering one-of-a-kind holiday items, like Le Labo candles, Kenzo iPhone cases (left), and Yoko Ono’s recently-released and much discussed menswear collaboration based on her illustrations from 1969. One-of-a-kind pieces are also a draw for those vacationing on the West Coast. Ayana Tribitt, retail curator at the SLS Hotel at Beverly Hills, is stocking the boutique with Nialaya bracelets that guests can customize on site. Their Assouline books always make for reliable gifts, while $2,500 Toro masks cater to the more adventurous shopper.

Farther south at the Cuixmala resort on Mexico’s Pacific Coast, the dress code is luxe-casual. Hotel owner Alix Marcaccini sets a relaxed tone at the boutique with caftans by Temperley and beachwear and accessories by Christophe Sauvat. “People here want sarongs and flip-flops, no heels, and long flowy dresses—anything comfortable,” said Marcaccini. “They’re looking for fluid, feminine, sensual clothes.”

Photo: Courtesy Photo

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