• The Interview: Francesca Bonato
    A Mexican dream turned into reality — the hotelier and designer talks to NATALIE EVANS-HARDING about life on the Tulum coast

    Photographs by Annabel Mehran
    Styling by TRACY TAYLOR

    “I hope I never see people in high heels here,” Francesca Bonato laughs, taking a sip of herbal tea as the midday sun beats down on the courtyard of her hotel Coqui Coqui in Tulum on the Yucatán peninsula. It’s an intense heat, but Milanese Bonato, 35, relocated to Mexico – via New York, London, Paris and Brussels – over ten years ago and has long since acclimatized.

    We are discussing Tulum’s recent popularity explosion with fashion-types looking to escape city life. The New York Times has called it “a destination so popular with the

    Kaftan by Talitha; bikini by Melissa Odabash; sandals by Ancient Greek Sandals; necklace by Brooke Gregson; (right hand) bracelets by Maria Black; bracelet by Chloé; bracelet by Saint Laurent by Hedi Slimane; (left hand) bracelet by Ashley Pittman

    Style RÉSUMÉ

    PROFESSION: Hotelier and fashion designer

    MY STYLE: I was a gypsy in another life

    MY GO-TO LABELS: The Italians – Valentino, Dolce & Gabbana and lesser-known labels like Forte Forte

    MY FAIL-SAFE PIECES: Light, floaty pieces for hot days and mannish suit pants for evening

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