What Makes Your City’s Style Unique
Five men of note tell us what to wear (and what to do) in some of our favourite destinations
What makes a city? The skyline, for sure. The restaurants, perhaps. Some have a certain intangible feeling, like the romance of Paris or the buzzing, excitable electricity of New York. Others have less abstract hallmarks: Tokyo’s crowds, Berlin’s clubs, London’s dreadful weather. A city’s style, however, is a trickier thing to pin down. Generally, you really have to pitch up there, pound its pavements, shop its shops, meet its people, to get a feeling for not only what they’re wearing, but also the attitude with which they wear it. It sounds laborious – and it is. But with the following feature, in which MR PORTER asks some sartorial aficionados from Stockholm, Paris, London, Berlin and New York to talk about the current style habits in their city, we’ve done most of the legwork for you. We call it a wearable city guide. Enjoy.
Mr Philipp Petrescu – entrepreneur and advisor
Born in Berlin, Mr Philipp Petrescu founded his first company when he was still in high school. In 2013, he helped to establish Lendico (“a lending platform that brings together borrowers and investors”) – securing him a place on the Forbes’ 30 Under 30 list this year. Now he’s working on a personal travel assistant app called Voya.
How did your career begin?
When I was 13 or 14, I started to learn how to code and build websites. I had an idea for an app platform and found someone who was foolish enough to give me some money.
How do your clothes reflect Berlin style?
Berlin style is all about keeping things casual. Your clothes have to take you from riding your bike in the morning to going to Berghain at night. That doesn’t mean people don’t put effort into how they look, but it’s a rather sleek, pared-down aesthetic.
Where do you like to hang out?
There’s nothing quite like summer in Berlin – with all its free festivals, parks, food halls and flea markets. And if it gets too hot, head to The Badeschiff, a pool on the Spree, or the surrounding lakes of Brandenburg to cool down.
Mr George Lamb – presenter and entrepreneur
West London-born Mr George Lamb is a presenter (he fronts a football show every Friday night on BT Sport) and is currently working on a radio project called Wolfgang, based in east London. “It works like the iPlayer. But we’re trying to build a community of like-minded people so we can effect some change.”
Has London got a unique style?
London is arguably the fashion capital of the world. Paris would probably have a few things to say about that, but the most prominent menswear is certainly here. It’s always going to be pushing things a lot more. Our tailoring is as strong as anywhere in the world. But Savile Row can’t keep regurgitating the same things over and over. They’re going to adapt and start making a less formal suit.
How does what you wear reflect that?
From spring through autumn, I’m going to rock a lot more suits with a slightly softer shoulder, with a light cashmere knit beneath. And I’ll show my ankles – it’s sort of my trademark. I feel smart and slick, but not too stuffy.
What are your favourite things to do in London?
My favourite restaurant is Bocca Di Lupo. Sit at the bar at the window end – there’s more space. I have my lunch every day in Tiosk on Broadway Market. There’s a lady called Natasha and she serves really healthy food. Tip: take a walk along the Southbank and go to the BFI, and walk over Waterloo Bridge at night. And if you end up in Covent Garden, go to Barrafina.
Mr Romee de Goriainoff – owner, the Experimental Group
After gaining a dual finance and economics masters degree at Dauphine University, Mr Romee de Goriainoff moved into the hospitality industry, and now owns some of the best-loved bars in Paris (Grand Pigalle Hotel), London (Joyeux Bordel), Ibiza (Experimental Beach) and New York (Compagnie Des Vins Surnaturels Centre Street).
How did the Experimental Group come about?
Two friends and I were in New York in 2007 and, having seen the rise of the craft cocktail culture, we brought it back to Paris. We opened the Experimental Cocktail Club in the middle of a dead street and it grew from there.
How would you describe the bar culture in Paris?
There is an energetic vibe because people are still discovering new things. In London, there has been a strong bar scene for longer. They know more. I think people are more careful about what they wear when they go out for a drink in Paris. We have a big fashion crowd.
Do your clothes reflect Parisian style?
Yes. There has been a huge growth in independent labels in Paris in the past three or four years. People are getting more interested in brands like Officine Generale and Ami. Areas such as Le Marais cater for niche brands.
What are your favourite hangouts?
One of my favourite places for food and wine is called Frenchie. It opened in London, too. And I like to go to Wild & The Moon – it’s vegan, super healthy and the only place where I can get a turmeric latte.
Mr Max Bergstrom – musician
Splitting his time between London and Stockholm, Mr Max Bergstrom is a musician and model, who also finds time for a creative writing course at London’s Goldsmiths College. He plays in a band called Little White Things.
Is there a certain Stockholm style?
It isn’t super trend driven. The awareness of fashion is high; everyone dresses well. But they dress very timelessly. It’s easy to dress well in Stockholm. Brands such as Acne Studios do great knitwear and outerwear.
What are your favourite hangouts?
Skinnarviksberget is a little viewing spot from which you can see the entire city. There’s a really cool café called Kaffeverket that serves good coffee and good food. In the summer, all Stockholmers go to Trädgården for its markets and nightclubs.
How would you sum up the atmosphere in Stockholm?
It’s chilled, but with a pulse: similar to east London. It’s very seasonal. In the summer, there are loads of events and festivals. The sun is up for ever. In the winter, everyone gets introverted and moody.
Mr Adam Shapiro – vice president, KCD
A New Yorker working in London for one of fashion’s biggest PR agencies, Mr Adam Shapiro spends around half of his year at the shows. He describes New York as a “spontaneous town” with “crazy energy”.
How do people dress in New York?
New York is a casual town of sport and streetwear and people wear a lot of denim. In London, I get dressed up more to go to dinner.
Describe a current trend.
People wear their gym clothes outside of the gym. And the idea of wearing sweatpants to dinner is never out of the question – with a collared shirt, a blazer and some sneakers. Elevated sweatpants are a big thing in New York.
What about the clothes you wore for our shoot?
Those Tomas Maier drawstring navy trousers were great. They were part of a suit. I like the idea of a suit jacket that matches a really casual trouser.
What three things would you take on a trip to New York?
A stack of New Yorkers for the plane ride. A light jacket, like the Valentino one I wore, which you can wear as outerwear or under a coat (you can get anything from a blizzard to warm weather). And probably a healthy selection of sunglasses.