2 posts tagged "Alexandra Cassaniti"
Summer has officially kicked off, and for many Manhattanites, that means shorter workday Fridays and regular trips to the Hamptons. After opening its doors in 2008, the Surf Lodge helped turn Montauk into a warm-weather destination. Of course, you can have too much of a good thing. The place became such a hot spot that in 2011, it racked up close to 700 zoning violations for noise, crowd, and health code. Its future was uncertain until a tech entrepreneur came in and bought the space, paying a large lump sum for the fines, and promising to make it a calmer, family-friendly environment.
To help, the new management brought in designer Alexandra Cassaniti (who also designs two swim lines: Summer Bummer and a namesake collection that’s sold at Opening Ceremony) as creative curator to give the lodge a makeover. She’s dedicated her efforts to highlighting the inn’s more tranquil vibe by overseeing the decor (outfitting the rooms with surf-related books and art) and amenities, as well as picking out the staff’s uniforms, by the Brazilian label Osklen.
“Our focus has been on creating a clean, calm experience for guests,” said Cassaniti, a San Diego native and an avid surfer. In-room and on-sale products like Coola organic sunscreen, Davines eco-shampoo and conditioner, TS Pink pure rock soaps, and Earth tu Face plant-based shower gel and face wash may help. Other updates include patchwork patio blankets she brought in for chilly evenings on the deck, rental bicycles sourced from Linus Bikes in Venice Beach (outfitted with Adeline Adeline metal baskets), and Byron, its new locavore-friendly restaurant modeled after the Aussie surf town Byron Bay. Keeping partiers calm and quiet may take more than sunscreen, but it’s a start.
The Surf Lodge, 183 Edgemere St., Montauk, N.Y. For reservations, call (613) 668-8110.
“Where I went to high school, we didn’t even have a football team. We had a surf team,” recalls Alexandra Cassaniti. It’s not surprising then that the former Steven Alan designer has found herself back at the beach. After fleeing the monolithic surf culture of her native Hawaii for the urban environs of New York, Cassaniti recently relocated to Los Angeles in order to be closer to the water. “The only thing is I didn’t realize that Silver Lake was so far from the ocean,” she laughs. “[It] didn’t even occur to me. I mean, I love the neighborhood, but it was actually less of a hassle to get to my beach in New York.” No matter though, Cassaniti has devised the perfect fashion solution for her long surf commute. The latest addition to her likably random eponymous line is a range of neoprene separates that work as well making the scene on Hillhurst Avenue as they do on a board in Malibu. Certainly, a nouvelle vague-vibe neoprene bustier top and beret make a nice rejoinder to the typical beachy bodaciousness, though Cassaniti notes that she finds herself looking less and less askance at that so-called cheesy West Coast style. “I feel like it’s an interesting challenge to warp that look into something interesting,” she says. Next up: higher-end versions of the mirrored specs Cassiniti has been remaking from deadstock neon sunglasses, and beach clogs inspired by the ones she used to wear in Hawaii.