Federica Palacios’s Geneva
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Federica Palacios’s Geneva
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Designer Federica Palacios is known for juxtaposing natural, contrasting textures to create tactile, sensual and luxurious interiors. Based out of Geneva, Frederica is one of today’s most talented decorators leading the way in redefining mountain chic, where the interior elements reference the alpine environment in a strong salute to the traditional ski hut.

Frederica’s own history is equally as varied; born in Argentina, she has a Swedish/French mother, has lived in London and calls Geneva her home. Excellent credentials it seems to join us as Esensual Living’s guide to Geneva in this month’s City Barometer. Federica knows Geneva inside out, from the roof top apartments she has transformed to the banks of Lac Léman.

Before hitting the slopes of her beloved Gstaad for the holidays, where she revamps hotels and private chalets, Frederica takes us on her exclusive tour of Geneva, the city she not only describes as the threshold to the world’s greatest mountain resorts, but also the “centre of the world”.

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Courtesy of Federica Palacios
 

Esensual Living : What makes Geneva different from any other city in the world?
Federica Palacios: It is charming, cosmopolitan and in the centre of the world! So close to Milan, Paris, London and half way between America and Asia.

EL : Describe life in Geneva?
FP: Extremely civilised, when people meet in an elevator or entrance they say hello….

EL : Geneva in 3 words?
FP : Peaceful, safe and beautiful.

EL :  Do you have a favourite view?
FP : St Pierre Cathedral in the old town.

EL :  What is your favourite neighbourhood and why?
FP : Without a doubt the old town of Geneva. The small streets with cobblestones are enchanting, lined with small antique shops and art galleries. At every corner you have small cosy cafes and restaurants.

EL : Can you describe the culture of food. What local dishes are a must try?
FP : “Filet de Perche” served with a butter and lemon sauce is my favourite. The fish come from the Lac Leman.

EL : Can you describe the perfect night out in Geneva?
FP : A nice dinner at la Finestra followed by a drink at “Le Baroque” night club. .

 

EL : Are there many festivals and cultural events in Geneva, do you have a favourite?
FP : Yes there are many music festivals…but my favourite is l’Escalade. This is a very special event that takes place every second weekend in December to celebrate the Independence of the city in 1602 against the “Savoyard”. It is very traditional celebration. During the entire weekend people walk in the streets of the old town dressed in traditional costume, drink warm wine and have food in little kiosk’s that serve dishes such as cheese raclette. It all ends on the Sunday night with the “cortège” that walks through the city to finally congregate around a big bond fire on the St Pierre Cathedral square.

EL: In the Geneva cultural scene, what stands out to you ?
FP : Le Grand Théâtre, which is Geneva’s Opera house.

EL : Who are your favourite local designers and artists and why?
FP : Sylvie Fleury, Nicole Hassler, they are funky artists but yet aesthetically pleasing in all situations….

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Courtesy of Federica Palacios
 
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Courtesy of Federica Palacios
 

EL : Does the proximity of the mountains and famous resorts give a special flavour to the city? Does everyone pack up their skies and rush to the slopes as the first flakes hit the ground?
FP : Oh yes !!! The winter season is very special. On a Friday night everybody goes skiing! Sometime if it’s sunny, we even take a day off. If you miss a weekend at the mountains, you’ll be able to relax in the total quiet of the city… very pleasant and soothing.

EL : What about the lake… what does it bring to the city and its inhabitants?
FP : A beautiful view… it somehow feels like the centre of the city..

EL : What do you do to relax and unwind in Geneva?
FP : I love to take  a long  walk around the lake . When comes Spring, I sometimes rent a small boat (no permit needed!)

EL : Your favorite city escape?
FP : A day at the Spa of “ La Reserve”

EL : What can you not live without when in Geneva?
FP : A good salary…

EL : What is indispensable to live in Geneva?
FP : A good group of friends .

EL : What are your home Essentials for a holiday at the mountains?
FP : What I find most important in the mountains is after a long day of skiing to sit by a burning wood fire under a warm cashmere throw with a hot chocolate!

 
CITY GUIDE - GENEVA
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Boulangerie Patisserie Golay
 

BREAKFAST

Boulangerie Patisserie Golay

Where you’ll find the best croissant au chocolat in town.

Rue Adrien Lachenal 12, 1207 Geneva

 

LUNCH

Roberto

Refined Italian food in a classical setting.

www.restaurantroberto.ch

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Roberto
 
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La Finestra
 

DINNER

La Finestra

A very cosy and small Italian restaurant in the old town.

Rue de la Cite 11, 1204 Geneva

 

CAFE

La Clémence

It is located on the central square of the old town. I love the big, pleasant terrace and the nice crowd that goes there.

www.laclemence.ch/site/fr

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La Clémence
 
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Zoé Live Bar
 

BAR

Zoé Live Bar

Great cocktails and live music.

www.zoelivebar.com

 

MUSEUM

Musée Barbier-Muller

One of the most amazing private collections in the world of Asian and African art.

www.barbier-mueller.ch

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Musée Barbier-Muller
 
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Galerie Mitterand-Cramer
 

Gallery

Galerie Mitterand-Cramer

Contemporary art and a big, sober space.

www.mitterrand-cramer.com

 

BOOK SHOP

Librairie Bernard Letu

Two steps from the Musée Barbier-Muller, a super selection of fabulous art books, including African Art and photography.

www.letubooks.com

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Librairie Bernard Letu
 
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Drake Store
 

BOUTIQUE

Drake Store

A very nice selection of fashion designers clothes for women and men.

www.drakestore.net

 

FLOWER SHOP

Trend

So creative and trendy!

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Trend
 
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The Marché de Rive
 

MARKET

The Marché de Rive

On the Boulevard Helvétique, a charming and excellent outdoor market, open only on Wednesdays and Saturdays, with wonderful local products. 

 

HOTEL

La Réserve

For its excellent food, fun design, indoor and outdoor pools. In the summer they have a boat that can take you in and out to the centre of town.

www.lareserve.ch

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La Réserve
 

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