Stellene Volandes knows how to have a good time, and shows others one, too. In her roles as editor in chief of Town & Country and editorial director of Elle Decor, she celebrates “attractive people doing attractive things in attractive places” (as society photographer Slim Aarons so famously stated). Under her guidance, the definition for what’s attractive — and where — as well as what’s chic and what’s #VeryTandC — has expanded well beyond the confines of the somewhat stuffy society norms the magazine was once known for. Always happy to mix high and low, Volandes has authored two books on exquisite jewels and jewelry, both historic and contemporary, but she also loves nothing more than morning coffee at Viand, her favorite diner in her native New York City. We recently caught up with the style maven, fresh off trips to Paris and Milan for the fashion shows, to find out where she’ll be spending time this summer, and what she’ll be doing — and wearing — while there.
Why You Love It. The minute I land I feel completely at home but far, far away at the same time.
Where to Go First. Ariston — one of the oldest bakeries in the city — for a frappe sketo iced coffee (no milk or sugar) and a cheese pie.
Insider Tip. Everyone needs a great guided tour of the Acropolis, whether it’s the first time you visit or the fifteenth. Michael Patmanidis, a trained archaeologist, is the answer. After working up an appetite exploring the Parthenon, you’ll need drinks on the roof of the Hotel Grande Bretagne and then dinner at Papadakis. Order the spicy shrimp.
LONG ISLAND’S NORTH FORK
Why You Love It. Because my family has spent summers here forever — and even as it has changed, it’s still the same relaxed retreat it’s always been.
What to Wear. A beach cover up and a straw bag from Lido — my favorite store in Greenport. And my favorite shell necklace from Jenna Blake — like Jeff Spicoli’s in Fast Times at Ridgemont High! But not quite the same.
Insider Tip. Aldo — of Aldo’s — is a Greenport legend. If you don’t get his coffee and his biscotti, no one will believe you were ever on the North Fork at all.
Why You Love It. Because even though as a New Yorker I’m not supposed to love it, I do, I really do.
Where to Go First. Check in to the Hotel Bel-Air and order a barbecue salmon salad.
What to Wear. An Attersee tunic dress and an Elder Statesman sweater in case it gets cold. When in L.A., wear L.A. jewelry: a Lisa Eisner turquoise pendant, Irene Neuwirth gold earrings, and a VRAM ring.
Insider Tip. Go to Fanny’s at the new Academy Museum for lunch and look for illustrator and art star Konstantin Kakanias. Even if you don’t have a sighting, you can stare at the murals he created on the walls.
NEW YORK CITY
Why You Love It. Do I even have to say?
Where to Go First. Sant Ambroeus for an iced americano and prosciutto and Swiss cheese sandwich.
What to Wear. By day, a Gucci Diana tote. By night, an Aerin leopard print clutch. Elsa Peretti jade anytime.
Insider Tip. You want to put your best face forward in this city. For that, go to Aida Bicaj Skin Care on East 67th. Or now in Tribeca, too!