Long gone are the days when shopping at a hotel meant ubiquitous logo wear, sunscreen and magazines. Today’s luxury hotels have put ready-to-wear front and center to reimagine retail for a savvy global guest. And Montage Hotels & Resorts has been at the forefront of this shift in retail strategy, with dedicated buyers scouring the globe to deliver in-demand designers and the season’s hottest trends for its collection of eight properties.
We spoke with Montage Director of Retail Missy Clements to find out what the secret sauce is for its sought-after boutiques and what trends and designers will be this fall’s standout style stars.
Montage Magazine: What is the Montage retail philosophy, and how important is it to have a mix of both recognizable labels and local labels at each location?
Missy Clements: What speaks directly to the Montage guest is product that is sophisticated with a modern edge and unique perspective. We love to have the kind of boutique that has the brands and designers that guests recognize, but to add in a sense of place to each resort and offer local designers as well. For example, at Montage Laguna Beach, we offer [Studio] Suzan jewelry. And another local jewelry designer who has exploded on the market is gorjana. For men, one of our popular brands is Vuori, which offers performance apparel. Based in Encinitas, California, Vuori draws its inspiration from the active coastal Cali lifestyle and is deeply connected to nature, health and wellness.
MM: What are some of the key fall trends and designers that Montage guests will want to snap up this fall?
MC: It depends on the location. For example, fall at Montage Deer Valley is all about metallic, neons and animal print for aprés ski. We’re loving leopard-print cashmere from 360Cashmere and fashionable metallic accessories from Clare Vivier. Yellow and gold are strong colors for fall as well, and gold in jewelry is also picking up steam.
MM: So, let’s just say I want to leave a little extra room in my suitcase to bring home some of fall’s hottest accessories, what will I find this fall at Montage boutiques?
MC: Pops of color and texture are big in accessories this season, from burgundy velvet bags from Hammitt to pink metallic clutches from Clare Vivier. And for sunglasses, Gucci and Linda Farrow sunglasses have their fingers on the pulse for fall.
MM:What are some of the tried-and-true designer labels that do well across the board at all Montage locations?
MC: Peter Millar is our No. 1-selling designer, which is amazing since the majority of our shoppers are women. On the women’s side, brands such as 360Cashmere, Joie and Bailey44 all do very well.
MM: What about for spa?
MC: Wrap Up by Valerie Perez, Xírena and Vuori all are loved by our guests.
MM: What new designers is Montage excited to carry this fall?
MC: Camilla was brought in as a test and it is doing phenomenally. Also, we’re very excited for the new jewelry by Hayley Style. Hayley Style isn’t new to us, but she’s got some amazing new dainty gold pieces, which we cannot keep on the shelves.
MM: Do you have one key bit of packing advice for Montage guests and why?
MC: Remember that swim is important year-round. A lot of time people don’t think to bring swimsuits in the fall, but there are indoor pools and hot tubs. And look at the weather not only for daytime, but for your nightlife as well. It can cool down quite a bit at night in some places. And on the opposite side, in places such as Deer Valley, you may dress warm for your ski day, but it’s nice and cozy inside for dinner. And don’t worry if you forget something: Montage boutiques will always be able dress you from head to toe.
MM: What key swim trends will Montage bring in for fall?
MC: High-waisted and high-cut legs continue from spring and into fall. Much like the ready-to-wear trends, metallics and animal prints are huge, such as the cheetah print collection coming from Melissa Odabash. Vitamin A is also a local, SoCal designer that is now nationally recognized, and we love them for their sustainability efforts. A portion of their proceeds go to environmental organizations who work to protect our oceans.
By Michelle Dalton Tyree