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destination styleMonday, May 8, 2017

Santorini Greece: the style set’s fashionable holiday haven


Santorini Greece: the style set's fashionable escape. Celebrities from Chrissy Teigen and Valentina Vignali, to Angelina Jolie and John Stamos have all soaked up the island's white-washed architecture, dark black sand beaches and, of course, the stunning views around the astonishingly beautiful caldera.

Labelled 'dreamy Santorini' by Condé Nast Traveller, it's a go-to destination fashion and lifestyle bloggers, providing a magical backdrop of deep blue waters and bright white buildings – not to mention the world-famous (and Instagram-friendly) lagoon that sits at the heart of the isle – both geographically and sentimentally. 


Firá: indulgence and minimalism meet


Even in the vibrant, bustling town of Firá, the Cycladic island’s capital, Santorini style is minimalist. Rich hues worn in simple silhouettes contrast with the traditional Greek architecture to stunning effect. With Michelin-level cuisine and the latest fashions, the town has a lot to keep its – sartorially meticulous – visitors captivated (of which there are many, but it’s worth the crowding – and not just for that perfect social media snap). Although Firá is teeming with luxurious hotels, glass-like infinity pools and elegant restaurants, this is not the place for sky-high heels and glittering Iris Apfel-style accessories. Instead, the warren of steep, narrow streets calls for a classic pair of men’s Tod’s shoes or decorative Rochas sandals. 


Standing on the edge of the colourful cliffs and huge caldera, Firá is breath-taking at night. It’s the ideal backdrop for Alberta Ferretti’s SS17 jewel tones and tailored separates – the succulent shades of cobalt and amethyst offer a lively aesthetic, while the sleek silhouettes are in line with the Santorini style set’s love of utilitarianism. Alberta Ferretti dresses worn with a jewelled pair of sliders will easily see you through an evening of sipping cocktails. The men’s SS17 catwalks were filled with vintage-inspired cuts and muted tones. Look to high-waisted trousers by Rick Owens and colourful Cuban shirts for sartorial bragging (and blogging) rights.


Oia: destination romance


Although almost every corner of fashionable Santorini is Instagram-worthy (we’d guess even the bin areas, for those arty shots), the northern village of Oia (pronounced 'Ia') is the most famous for its stunning views and idyllic aesthetic. White-washed walls sit among sepia-toned buildings and bright cobalt domes, offering the ideal setting for romantic strolls and long lunches. Lifestyle blog Fashion Mumblr recommends getting up early to beat the crowds and get clearer views (and shots) of all the beauty. The Victoria Victoria Beckham SS17 catwalk took inspiration from the designer’s love of the beach, so the pared-down neutrals, hummingbird motifs and relaxed tailoring sit nicely against Oia’s famed sunsets. 


A gentle wander around the historic village can encourage a maritime aesthetic. A peek into the island’s naval museum will make wearing stripes almost an imperative. A strong seafaring theme ran throughout the menswear SS17 catwalks: Alexander McQueen opted for bold graphic stripes, while Fendi showcased muted shades with loose cuts for a vintage feel. Style a pair of Fendi trousers with a long-sleeved striped T-shirt from Saint Laurent or Faith Connexion for that ‘just stepped off my multi-million pound yacht’ feel that the Santorini style set are (in)famous for. 


Perissa and Kamari: the blackest of beaches 


The beaches surrounding fashionable Santorini are unlike any others on the Greek islands. The volcanic rocks that make up the island give the beaches a dark red or black colour, while the steep cliff faces create a secluded ambience. And as an added bonus, the darker the sand, the warmer the water (have you booked your flight yet?). It would be tempting to add dramatic prints and eye-catching shades to this already striking landscape, but the Blumarine SS17 catwalk offered something different with subtle hues of muted khakis and clay. Opt for a thigh-split skirt and outsized hat to throw on after your (really quite warm) dip in your favourite Lisa Marie Fernandez two-piece. 


Santorini: the style set’s fashionable escape… and winery. Yes, you read that right. Greek wine is often unsung, but a favourite among many in the know. Santorini has a fair few wineries for such a relatively small island, but Halaris is one of the most prominent, and offers beautiful views of the surrounding area of Perissa (along with the all-important tasting tour). To really get into the swing (and swig) of it, take inspiration from the French on your wanderings among the vines by wearing light linens, broderie anglaise and vintage workwear shapes. Saloni dresses from the SS17 collections embraced this aesthetic, fusing ethnic prints with traditional silhouettes. For menswear, take a more adventurous route – labels like Fendi and Salvatore Ferragamo drew their inspiration from safari-wear, with oversized chest pockets and an earthy colour palette. 


It may be one of the worst-kept secrets in modern travel, but stylish Santorini Greece lives up to its reputation. From the classical white-washed walls and bright blue domes of the cave houses and churches to the ocean-filled caldera, the landscape is the perfect setting for a relaxing break from the toils of city life. Offering constant inspiration to artists, poets and – more recently – Instagrammers and bloggers, the island is a haven of creativity and fashionable indulgence. Before you book your flights, however, just be warned – those astonishingly empty-of-tourists images you see on social media may take a while to set up.

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