The Aesthete: Janek Deleskiewicz talks more personal taste

The Jaeger-LeCoultre creative director rounds up his list of likes with Andy Warhol, eating at beach restaurants in Bali and playing his Selmer saxophone

Janek Deleskiewicz at home in Paris
Janek Deleskiewicz at home in Paris | Image: Léo-Paul Ridet

My style icon is my father, who fought during the second world war and lived in Edinburgh, Manchester and London between 1939 and 1947. He always wore a three-piece suit from Savile Row and black officer Derby shoes. He also wore English – not Swiss – watches; they were small and understated, without gold or special calibres. One or two still work today. 

The best gift I’ve given recently was a pair of ballet slippers for my 13-year-old daughter from Flashdance, a dance store in Paris. My daughter goes through ballet shoes so quickly, and last June I bought a pair that by September she had outgrown. She was scared I’d be unable to return them, but the woman in the shop gave me a new pair free of charge – the best kind of service. 17 Rue de la Pépinière, 75008 Paris (+339-7035 9521; flashdanceparis.com). 

Marilyn Monroe screenprints by Andy Warhol
Marilyn Monroe screenprints by Andy Warhol | Image: Alamy

And the best one I’ve received was my daughter’s smile when she came home with her new ballet slippers.

The one artist whose work I would collect if I could is Andy Warhol. He was a visionary who could depict American icons such as Marilyn Monroe and Elvis Presley, but at the same time people like Mao Zedong or Mick Jagger. What was important was what they represented. I don’t necessarily like the songs of The Rolling Stones but love what they symbolised: youth, hope and giving power to the next generation. 

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In my fridge you’ll always find Pamplie butter and goat’s cheese, both of which I buy from the weekend market by my house. I was born in the Charente-Maritime region, near La Rochelle, and I love having good, luxury butter. laiteriedepamplie.com.

A recent “find” is the fisherman’s village of Jimbaran in Bali. There are restaurants all along the beach where they sell fish by the kilo and cook it for you immediately. We dined at Ganesha Café by the sea and stayed from sunset till the middle of the night, under the stars. Jalan Pantai Kedonganan, Kedonganan, Kuta, Kabupaten Badung (+62361-703 532).

Pamplie butter
Pamplie butter | Image: Léo-Paul Ridet

The best book I’ve read in the past year is Body and Soul by Frank Conroy. I found it really personal; it’s about a child prodigy whose musical genius pulled him out of squalor. £12; penguinrandomhouse.com.

My favourite room in my house is my bedroom, on the top floor, with a big window that overlooks our terrace and the rooftops of Paris. I like waking up and seeing the sky.

Beach restaurant at Jimbaran in Bali
Beach restaurant at Jimbaran in Bali | Image: Alamy

The grooming staple I’m never without is face cream, which I usually pick up at duty-free in airports. The one I like a lot and have been using for years is L’Oréal Men Expert Hydra Energetic Daily Moisturiser. £10.59 for 50ml; boots.com.

My favourite website is YouTube, to listen to jazz tunes I want to play with my band – such as, most recently, The Way You Look Tonight by Jerome Kern. 

W New York – Times Square hotel
W New York – Times Square hotel | Image: W Hotel

If I didn’t live in Paris, the city I would live in is New York. I’ve been influenced by so many movies made in New York, where they filmed on the street. I love sitting in Central Park eating a fresh salad with sliced beef fillet from Dean & DeLuca. I’m also a brunch fan and go to Spoon Table & Bar for its tasty, American-style food and great service. But the area I’d really love to live in for a few days is Broadway, where I recently discovered the W New York – Times Square hotel, near 50th Street. I find it fascinating how the Broadway actors can dance, sing and play simultaneously. Dean & DeLuca, 1150 Madison Ave, 10028 (+1212-717 0800; deandeluca.com). Spoon Table & Bar, 40 E 33rd St, 10016 (+1646-230 7000; spoontablebar.com). W New York – Times Square, 1567 Broadway, 10036 (+1212-930 7400; wnewyorktimessquare.com). 

If I weren’t doing what I do, I’d be a professional jazz musician, playing the saxophone. The one I have is a Selmer tenor, which I bought at Henri Selmer in Paris around 35 years ago. I think it’s far better to play an instrument than sing – it’s a kind of protection between yourself and the public. Janek’s band plays at Un Million de Musiques. Henri Selmer, 18 Rue de la Fontaine au Roi, 75011 Paris (+331-4923 8740; selmer.fr). Un Million de Musiques, 7 Rue de Montreuil, 94300 Vincennes (+331-4328 6320; unmilliondemusiques.com).

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