UltraLuxe Meets: Alex Eagle

Creative director, brand owner, hospitality entrepreneur and designer, Alex Eagle is the ultimate multihyphenate – and one of London’s most revered tastemakers. Here, she talks everything from vintage shopping and wellness essentials to indulgent fridge staples and travel luxuries.

On Her Home

My home is a loft in the centre of Soho. It’s set behind a courtyard so it’s actually very quiet and light. I’ve been here for eight years – it’s gone from being an art and design-filled London oasis to a home with multiple children painting all over the walls. But it’s amazing – it’s always evolving. My father worked in the film industry and my first job was delivering rushes for him when I was a young teenager. I’d get £15 for walking around the area with my A-Z. If someone told me then I’d live in Soho I probably wouldn’t have believed them, but I went on to work at Tank magazine and Harper’s – my whole life has always been here. Everyone comes through Soho at some point in the week, and when you live here, you barely need to leave. It’s alive again post-pandemic, and better than ever right now.

I think lighting is the most important factor in making a space feel homely. Floor lamps add so much warmth – I love the Conran Shop and Artemide for lamps, and also Besselink & Jones on Walton Street. My most prized home possessions are two Paustian Clam chairs – they’re fluffy, rounded, polished wood and they’re so cheerful, like little friends. I also love all the art I’ve collected, especially from my talented cousins. I have a sculpture by Luke Alen-Buckley called Talisman – he spent hours drilling stones to make this incredible plinth. Venetia Berry is also my god daughter and my daughter’s God mother – I love her pieces. Plus, there’s those murals my kids have painted all over the walls – I guess that’s now my most prized art.

Most of my home accessories come from my brand. We make sofas, chairs, plates, glasses, napkins… But I also love David Mellor in Marylebone, and I love picking up bits when I’m on holiday. St Ives is particularly good for ceramics. The best thing I’ve picked up on my travels are some mad 18th-century French champagne flutes. They’re so weird and wonderful.

My biggest INDULGENCE at home, though? CAVIAR.

On Style

Generally I only really shop for vintage now. I love Rellik in Notting Hill or Resee in Paris or online. Clare Richardson’s new platform, Reluxe, is filled with special pieces. Whenever I go to LA, I make a pilgrimage to Decades – it has an amazing collection of Halston, Tom Ford for Gucci and old Yohji Yamamoto for Comme Des Garçons. In London, I love Egg on Kinnerton Street and Mouki Mou on Chiltern Street – I’m always inspired by well-made things in lovely fabrics and their owners have consistently created beautiful, unique aesthetics. I also love Livingstone Studios in Hampstead for hand-crafted pieces and Japanese ceramics. On the high street, I go to Arket for little presents or bits for the kids. 

My personal style is quite pared back and minimal, and I’m very inspired by menswear. My most treasured piece is a pair of really beaten-up Levi’s jeans that I’ve had forever. They have the orange tag on the back which shows they’re pre-1970s and they’ve really nicely softened and worn with age – they’re now irreplaceable. I also have a 1971 Cartier nail bracelet designed by Aldo Cipullo that is up there as one of my most special pieces.

When it comes to everyday dressing, I have a uniform of tailoring and classic building blocks. I mostly wear my own suits – they’re made in a studio in London from Loro Piana fabrics. They makes me feel put together without being complicated. I love the clean lines that come from a really masculine aesthetic – plus, a lovely wool or cashmere feels great against your skin. I never feel over or under dressed in a suit. They tend to work with a t-shirt and trainers for anything these days, but I’ll also wear a suit for black tie events. I’ll just slick my hair back and wear extra eye make-up or a bold lip. Then I’ll go for it with the jewels and wear amazing Jimmy Choo crystal shoes or something else fun.

THE SPACES, TINE HILLIER

On Travel

Italy is my favourite summer destination. Last year we went to Capalbio which was wonderful – this year is Sicily, but I also love Tuscany. There’s nowhere I don’t like. For winter, I enjoy staying in the UK. My hotel Oakley Court is so light-filled even when it’s freezing cold – I love the fires burning. My grandma lived in Norfolk, and I have lots of memories of being in Holkham as a child, as well as in Kinsale in Ireland. My cousins and I used to swim in the Irish sea which was character building to say the least.

If I could only stay in one hotel again, it would be Il Pellicano in Porto Ercole. My best friend is the owner and it’s just magical – you have it all there. A beautiful hotel, delicious food – I love the seabass baked in a delicious salt crust – and you can swim and paddle board for miles. You can walk up to a peak called Lion’s Head and plunge into the sea from a crazy height. It’s a special spot that feels weighted and old. A good book is my ultimate travel essential, along with a real camera. I have an Olympus point and shoot from the 90s – it’s not precious, but it means I can still take pictures and leave my phone in the room. 

If I could live anywhere else in the world, it would be Venice. I love walking everywhere, the culture – I feel very at home there. I’ve been lucky enough to stay at the Cipriani and the Gritti Palace, but nowhere I’ve ever stayed has ever let me down – it’s the most magical place. 

I mostly wear my OWN SUITS – they’re made in a studio in London from Loro Piana fabrics. They makes me feel PUT TOGETHER without being COMPLICATED.
180 Health Club

On Wellness

I’ve just opened a wellness destination, 180 Health Club. It’s a fun mixture of holistic treatments, science and tech – we have ozone therapy, cryotherapy, infrared saunas, but also yoga, acupuncture and lots of ancient remedies to make you feel well. It’s an edit of wellness practitioners I’ve met over the years who have really changed my life. There are so many fitness studios like Barry’s or Soul Cycle that do cardio really well, we wanted to create the antithesis of that – somewhere to go to do sports for the fun of it, not to burn calories or lose weight. So we offer fencing, ju-jitsu, ballet – things you can’t do on a screen. 

Reflexology is an indulgence I’d never forgo. Your feet are a map of your whole body – after good reflexology, your face glows and you just feel lighter. There’s a girl called Jess who does it at 180 The Strand who’s just amazing. Fatma at Skin Design London is the best facialist. Her products are amazing and she’s just so wise – you can really trust her with your face. Annee, the owner of De Mamiel, has a skin clinic at the NoMad hotel, which is one of the most extraordinary treatments I’ve ever tried – it’s a mix of healing and acupuncture. Josh Wood is the best hair colourist in London. There’s also a lady there, Heather, who does the best manis in the city. My brows I entrust to Suzanne Martin at the Lanesborough – her signature look, The Couture Brow, is amazing.

At the moment I’m using Food Hack, a delivery service for homecooked Ayurvedic food. It’s exceptionally good – it’s not a fad. It’s so warm and nurturing. I also take loads of supplements. I’m a big believer in doing blood tests and checking your DNA to actually understand what you need – apart from vitamin D, which we’re all deficient in, everyone has different requirements. I’m trying Lyma at the moment and it’s going well so far. For a total reset, I like Buchinger – it’s a magical place on Lake Constance in Germany where you can do fasting programmes or just relax and take long walks. They have generations of knowledge of fasting and longevity, and the benefits of taking time for yourself and unplugging.

My friend Alice Naylor-Leyland is the BEST HOST. We’ve been friends since we were teenagers and you walk on air for weeks after a stay at hers. She has such ATTENTION TO DETAIL – she puts so much thought into everyone’s stay and you really feel it.

On Going Out & Staying In

For a night out, I really love Sessions Art Club. My friend Florence Knight is the chef and she’s designed the most delicious cocktail menu, all served in gorgeous little coupes – and the food is scrumptious. I like nothing more than tapas style dining. I’m not a huge drinker, but when I do I love a good cocktail over wine. My favourite local bar is Bar Termini: it’s inspired by an Italian train station bar and does a small, edited menu of the most delicious cocktails – the whisky sour is particularly good.

A typical Friday night normally means bed with my kids by 9pm – but that is my fun these days. Or you can find us dancing around the apartment – I love reggae and soul legends, but I also grew up in the 90s with Blur, Oasis and Britpop. I’m lucky enough to mix with a lot of creatives, so I get exposed to loads of cool new music – I’m constantly on Shazam. Sundays involve trips to Marylebone farmers market and the playground there, or maybe a visit to the RA or the Serpentine, or Alfies Antiques Market on Church Street.

I’m better at making things look good on a plate rather than following a recipe. So I’m more of an assembler than a chef, but I love entertaining and having people in my home and hanging out and feeding them. I’ll sometimes get a Lidgates pie, or Jonny Collins at The Store kitchen will help me – I’m always up for collaborating in the kitchen. A good dinner party comes down to a good mix of people who don’t necessarily all know each other. It’s also keeping it relaxed – I would never serve plated food. Instead of flowers these days, I dress my table with plants. I have a cottage in Oxfordshire so I decorate the table with plants I can take back and plant with my kids – it’s less wasteful. My son loves laying the table – he’s only five, but we do it together. 

There’s a shop in Woodstock that sells gorgeous little baskets. If I’m being hosted, I fill one with a book I’ve just loved, a candle from my shop, a potted plant or a bottle of wine. There’s a delicious chocolate shop called William Curley in a very sweet, hidden little square in Soho – I’ll put some of his creations in there too, and some cookies from Crème. But if I’m going to someone for a whole weekend, I’ll give handblown Venetian glasses from my shop. I’ll give one or two then they can build a collection – we do tend to get invited back! My friend Alice Naylor-Leyland is the best host. We’ve been friends since we were teenagers and we’re all walking on air for weeks after a stay at hers. She has such attention to detail – she puts so much thought into everyone’s stay and you really feel it. 

On Giving Back

I’m an ambassador for Women For Women International which helps female survivors of war rebuild their lives. Their children and the children in their sphere also benefit – it’s an amazing programme. It does a lot of work in existing war zones, and in those that are recovering too. We do an annual car boot sale – it’s been virtual the last two years but this year we’re back in person – and we’ve raised over £1m getting women to donate their wardrobes for a good cause. We’ve had some amazing tastemakers donate, like Yasmin Sewell and Laura Bailey, as well as lots of stylists, editors, influencers, plus amazing brands. This year it’s on 14th May at the Selfridges car park, and you can get really amazing bargains – you just may spot Noor Fares or Eugenie Niarchos selling their Chanel handbags. 

Portrait photography by Genevieve Lutkin 
Studio photography by Hugo Cheung

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