Interview: Insider Look at Coco De Mer

LUXE Brand: Coco De Mer on The LUXE Passport by Lulu Amin

Being the global month of love, and with the recent ground-breaking premier of the film Fifty Shades of Grey, I thought I would reach out to a luxury brand that encapsulates "All things sexy".

I caught up with Ms. Lucy Litwack,  Managing Director of Coco De Mer, to learn a little more about this global luxury brand.

Read below for the exclusive Q&A...

LUXE Brand: Coco De Mer on The LUXE Passport by Lulu Amin

Tell me a little about Coco De Mer.

Founded in 2001 Coco de Mer is London’s legendary luxury erotic emporium. For the past decade we have inspired lovers, celebrated sexual liberation, and educated multitudes in a mission to create a space where decadence and excess is allowed to flourish.

Both our online and Covent Garden boutiques carry a selection of pieces hand picked to dazzle and delight. Whether you're interested in the finest lingerie selected from fashion forward designers across the globe, or beautifully crafted toys to indulge your sensual side we aim to satisfy your desires.

The Coco de Mer name was inspired by a rare plant found in the Seychelles, whose seeds suggestively resemble a woman's form. When first discovered it was prized as a valuable oddity, and they were frequently encrusted in gems and displayed in noblemen's homes as titillating oddities. We loved the idea of this playful yet precious seed and felt it encapsulated our store's philosophy perfectly.

LUXE Brand: Coco De Mer on The LUXE Passport by Lulu Amin

How did you become to be the Managing Director of CDM?

I have spent more than 15 years in the lingerie industry working with brands such as La Perla, Myla and Victoria's Secret.

Joining Coco de Mer last year has been an enlightening experience. The brand has an incredible history at the cutting edge of luxury erotica. As collectors and creators of only the finest erotica, we create a special and luxurious world for people to join us in our passion for beauty,design and sex. Everyone can benefit from inviting Coco de Mer into their lives and I look forward to encouraging more people to indulge in their enjoyment of each other.

Any products available right now that you're excited about? 

What are some 2015 Lingerie Trends you're excited about?

Luxurious minimalism, vintage romance, lots of metallics and erotic accessories influenced by Fifty Shades of Grey.

Quick, sexiest hotel in the world? Go!

Two words: Hôtel Costes.

LUXE Brand: Coco De Mer on The LUXE Passport by Lulu Amin  - Hotel Costes

 What are some of your brand goals for 2015?

We have a lot of exciting launches in the pipeline for this year. These include growing our own label assortment combined with a website redesign to bring the soul of Coco so beautifully encapsulated in our boutique to a broader customer base.

LUXE travel essentials?

A large cashmere blanket from Loro Piana, a fig candle from True Grace and an Erotic Toile eyemask and lingerie bag from Coco de Mer.

Hotel: Hotel Cacao

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Hotel Cacao’s guests are being immersed in a kicked-back, relaxed “Hippie Chic” lifestyle of sophisticated accommodations and cutting-edge dining and mixology experiences. Located on Playa del Carmen’s famous 5th Avenue, the 60-room property is located in the heart of the destination’s chic scene of restaurants, clubs and boutiques.

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The team that created the internationally heralded ‘Matilda lifestyle’ guest experience at Hotel Matilda in San Miguel de Allende founded Cornerstone in 2013. The hotel management and development company is building a ‘Hotel Matilda Lifestyle Collection’ of boutique properties in strategic locations throughout Mexico. The second hotel will open in 2015 in the San Angel district of Mexico City.

The LUXE Passport - Hotel Cacao

The spacious, modern rooms and suites offer every contemporary amenity, including bathroom amenities by Italian fashion designer Missoni. 

Architect Rodrigo de la Peña has imbued the property with dramatic architectural elements such as huge canvas accents in geometric shapes and a central court with a hyacinth lily pond. The interior design is clean and contemporary with bold color accents. The roof-top bar features innovative “coctelería” (mixology) experiences blended with spectacular views of the Caribbean and Cozumel Island.

Hotel Cacao’s restaurant, Nibs, is a serene, mouthwatering escape from the bustling dining scene on 5th Avenue. Nibs has a strong connection with Hotel Matilda:  At the helm is Chef Alejandro Cuatepotzo, a protégé of Enrique Olvera who was chef de cuisine at Hotel Matilda’s Moxi restaurant. Olvera, who is Mexico’s most famous chef, operates Moxi.

Nibs’ exciting and innovative menu taps the fresh, indigenous ingredients of the region and reinvents favorite Mexican seafood and meat dishes, such as ceviches with coconut and lime, scallops with lime pearls, lobster with green mango, shrimp burritos, tuna and beef tartare, salt-baked red snapper, conch fritters, and prime flat-iron carne asada. The area’s tropical ambience is re-imagined indoors with guests dining amid an original jungle mural by international street artist Eduardo Kobra, a flowing water wall, and banana and passion fruit plants. In stark contrast to the colorful tropical atmosphere, Namuh-designed walnut tables and chairs with Italian carrera marbletops are accented by simple white linens and china. The restaurant’s name reinforces the chocolate theme of Hotel Cacao: Nibs are unsweetened chocolate chips, created when cacao beans are crushed in the chocolate-making process.

The LUXE Passport - Hotel Cacao

Quirky, fun art in strategic interior locations, including brightly painted VW Bugs, are by Tommy Hilfiger. An after-hours-style bar downstairs has a sexy bordello look. The shops and restaurants on the street level of the building include Maíz de Mar, a marisquería (seafood restaurant) by Chef Olvera.

Rates range from $208 to $500, including Continental breakfast. Taxes are additional.

Travel: Luxury Airport Lounge Roundup

With spas, saunas and even cigar rooms, the new breed of airport lounge is adding an extra element of luxury for VIP travellers.

While the rest of us browse Duty Free, wealthy passengers spend their time at the airport in the pampered comfort of private airline lounges.

As lounges up the ante to attract even more big-spending travellers, website Private Jet Charter has nominated its five top lounges for the discerning passenger - and not one of them is in the UK.

Top of the list is the unusual Turkish Airlines design at Istanbul airport. Not many lounges can boast a grand piano, pool tables, a library, super size TV screens and private sleeping rooms.

But the CIP Lounge has it all, with private relaxation rooms and showers (along with special toiletry kits) and even a 'billiards hall'. Families are also welcome, with a dedicated playroom and private infant room so they don't disturb other fliers.

And of course, in keeping with the Turkish airline, hot and cold mezzes are available, along with an olive bar, Turkish Pizza station and separate grilled meats and fruit stations.

Virgin Atlantic is also a strong contender for its lounge in New York's JFK Airport, which is praised for giving the feeling of an upmarket bar in the Big Apple. The lounge has gold ceiling decorations, a giant sofa made entirely of red balls, a pool table and an extensive cocktail menu.

But those wanting privacy can escape to the person-sized cavities in the walls, which are wool-lined and given 'intimate' lighting so that passengers can escape to their own private space - there are even complimentary pyjamas for those who are so inclined.

If passengers want to be pampered, the in-house spa offers treatments using specialist Dr Hauschka products, while the New York hairstylist Bumble & Bumble can make sure they are suitably coiffed.

On the opposite end of the scale, Private Jet Charter nominated the minimalist Finnair Lounge in Helsinki, for its Nordic-inspired furniture from Finnish design company Marimekko.

The sleek white and chrome interior is typically Scandinavian and the wine cellar is particularly extensive. The shower suites also mean passengers can freshen up with complementary Finnish sea-buckthorn berry cosmetics - but perhaps the most Finnish addition in the lounge are the saunas, where travellers can go and relax in the warm.

As Etihad aims to cater for the big-spending customer - having launched three-room suites on its planes - the Diamond First Class Lounge at Abu Dhabi airport has all the modcons.

Its Six Senses spa offers 15-minute mini treatments and there is a dedicated Champagne bar, serving the best bubbly from France - not to mention a cigar lounge, where the best tobacco products are flown in from around the world.

There's even a personal nanny service so that tired parents don't need to be around their children and a playroom set up for families. And the restaurant has a special chef's table in the centre for VIP diners. While you eat, your spare clothes can be sent off and ironed and your shoes shined in time for the next stage of your journey.

As Asia overtakes Europe for its luxury offerings, its lounges aren't far behind. The fifth most luxurious airport lounge in the world, according to Private Jet Charter, is the KrisFlyer Gold Lounge from Singapore Airlines. Set in Singapore's Changi Airport, the space looks out over water features and leafy vegetation and has dedicated television lounges for those who want to zone out in front of their favourite programme.

Hugh Courtney, CEO of, said: 'The VIP traveller only wants the best of the best, and that's why these airlines are constantly making such vast changes. With their spectacular spacious private lounges, Nordic private spas, luxury dining and executive work facilities, we clearly see the quality of exclusive VIP lounges will only increase over the coming years.