Pyjama label Desmond & Dempsey – which has had a cult following since it launched in the UK in 2014 – has the essence of travel sewn within the fabric of its much-loved PJs. Launched by Molly Goddard and her husband Joel Jeffery – both avid travellers – they have based their iconic prints on the many destinations they have visited. Here, Molly opens up her ‘little black book’ to reveal her must-see places across the world.
Mexico City, Mexico
Mexico City is hands-down one of the coolest cities I have ever been to. It oozes creativity and, like their mezcal is a little bit spicy. We designed our AW19 collection after a visit there and has been my ‘where you would live if you could’ answer ever since.
Stay at Condesa DF, you’ll start the day with coffee in the turquoise library and finish it with a mezcal on the rooftop overlooking the Parque España.
My two favourite places for exceptional food in the city are Contramar and Don Verga. Contramar is ‘an establishment’. It’s been operating for 20 years in all its ocean-mural, white table-clothed glory. Using simple, fresh ingredients to create iconic dishes, Contramar’s menu is made for long lunches and many rounds of mezcal. Order the tostada de atuún, aguachile de campechano, and a bottle of Mezcal Amores. Make sure you book.
Don Vergas, on the other hand, needs no booking… It is mad, vibrant, and loud. The chefs shout “Who wants oysters? Who wants octopus?” from the tiny kitchen, and the hungry crowd shouts back their orders. It’s a place where you share food with strangers, where songs are sung, and where you can spend an entire afternoon. It’s an unforgettable experience, and not to be missed.
The magic of La Casa Azul is by no means a secret. The home of iconic Mexican artist Frida Kahlo is found in the neighbourhood of Coyoacán, slightly outside the city. You’ll know you’ve arrived when you see the line of visitors standing outside. Home to the artist from birth until her death in 1954, it is filled with her most famous works, her personal belongings, and memories – marking a life full of talent and turbulence.
Luis Barragán was another genius. His home and studio, Casa Barragán, are a testament to just that. Impassioned by a love for the sky and the garden, his architecture focuses on blurring the lines between inside and out. As well as being the intimate home of the iconic architect, Casa Barragán is now also an emblem of the modernist movement in Mexico, with the architect remaining an ongoing inspiration to many around the world.
Remigio is an amazing little shop in Mexico City’s historic district and it showcases the beauty and intricacy of the country’s indigenous textiles. Its founder of the same name, Remigio, has worked tirelessly to protect traditional weaving practices unique to rural Mexico, and broaden the knowledge of this almost lost art amongst the younger generations.
India was the last place we visited before we went into lock down. It is the most colourful, rich and charming place I think I have ever been to. There is a somewhat chaotic energy but if you can settle into it you’ll see the joy everywhere. We visited Mumbai, Udaipur, and Jaipur to research our SS21 Very Fine Collection. Indian cities buzz with life. As British photographer Tim Walker brilliantly put it: “India is what it means to be alive”. Our trip centred around visiting factories, drinking chai, and being ‘swept up’ in the markets.
In Mumbai go to a store called Poster Stuff. it is literally full (to the brim) of vintage Bollywood movie screen prints (which were originally used as posters in the cinemas). They have been collected for decades by the store owner’s grandfather.
Udaipur is home to pahari painting – a style of miniature painting – so walk through the City Palace to feel inspired and then find yourself a teacher. There are lots of shops lining the lake that offer classes. It’s a really lovely way to spend the afternoon.
In Jaipur, the magic happens in the early morning. Watch the sunrise from the sky in a Balloon Safari with Sky Waltz. You float over the city. No words are adequate to describe how special it is.
Another experience that you’ll remember forever is a visit to Govind Dev Ji Temple. We went to the first prayer of the day. As the chants were called, the sun rose, moving us both to tears.
Lastly, and a real treat, is the safari experience at Suján Sher Bagh in Rajasthan. A day’s drive from Jaipur, this is a place that should be on everyone’s bucket list. It is India’s most celebrated tiger reserve and the luxury camp is a taste of true hospitality.
Majorca has somehow become my ‘home away from home’. It was the first holiday Joel and I went on after I moved to London, and the place we always go to unwind. The mountains hug you and the water does magical things to your cortisol levels. Everything just seems easier there.
Casa Balandra is the place to stay. It’s a creative residency and a guest house with beautiful interiors – there’s really nothing else like it.
The best beach is Alconasser, along the west coast of Majorca. It is a climb to get down, but quieter than other spots and so well worth the effort.
The day trip we always make is to Cala Tuent – a remote, tranquil beach in the rugged, north-west of the island. To get there, you have to drive up and down some mighty cliffs, which makes it seem like you area on a true adventure. Finally, you’ll arrive at a pebbly beach with beautiful clear waters, which is framed by the Serra de Tramuntana mountain range on one side. From the beach you can walk to Restaurante Es Vergeret, which overlooks the cove, and has the some of the best seafood on the island. It’s absolute bliss.