Jacques Garcia talks personal taste: Part Two

The interior designer concludes his list of likes with massages at the Hôtel Costes, smoked salmon and blinis and his Normandy château

Jacques Garcia at his Château du Champ Bataille in Normandy
Jacques Garcia at his Château du Champ Bataille in Normandy | Image: Léa Crespi

The people I rely on for personal grooming and wellness are Tessa Theolier, my lifelong friend, collaborator and the only person I ever allow to cut my hair; and Julien Montenot, a masseur extraordinaire at the Hôtel Costes spa, for his restorative massages with essential oils. I’d have a very hard time giving these up – they are the perfect way to unwind after a busy day. Hôtel Costes, 239-241 Rue Saint-Honoré, 75001 Paris (+331-4244 5000; www.hotelcostes.com).

The Hôtel Costes spa, Paris
The Hôtel Costes spa, Paris | Image: Frédéric Baron-Morin

The books on my bedside table are typically about Roman architecture from the 17th century, but you’ll also find a copy of Monochrome by photographer Vanessa Von Zitzewitz, a coffee-table book of her black and white nudes, and Lost Divas by André Tubeuf, a beautiful Assouline book about the glamorous – and gossip-filled – lives of great opera singers.


The best gift I’ve given recently was proof of my loyalty to a dear friend.

Lost Divas by André Tubeuf
Lost Divas by André Tubeuf

And the best one I’ve received was a beautiful bouquet of lilies and white roses from Parisian florist Moulié Fleurs. It was sent by a close friend to celebrate the reopening of the Louvre’s decorative arts galleries, which I have spent years restoring. 8 Place du Palais Bourbon, 75007 Paris (+331-4551 7843; www.mouliefleurs.com).

A Dance to the Music of Time by Nicolas Poussin
A Dance to the Music of Time by Nicolas Poussin | Image: Getty Images

The last meal that truly impressed me was a private dinner hosted by Marie-Hélène de Rothschild in the Galerie d’Hercule at the Hôtel Lambert in Paris. This exquisite, 17th-century mansion – set on the tip of the Ile Saint-Louis – was the magical setting for an evening that will forever be in my memory.

Fountain of Neptune by Jean de Bologne
Fountain of Neptune by Jean de Bologne | Image: Getty Images

The artists whose work I would collect if I could include Michelangelo, Nicolas Poussin, Turner, Picasso and Matisse, among many others. I admire them for their use of colour, and each of their works evokes a distinct sense of place and time.   


My favourite room in my house is my bedroom at my château in Normandy. It is a grand, jewel-toned space that has painted Peking silk walls and an elaborate, green velvet canopied bed. I like being surrounded by the rare books and antiquities I have assembled, as well as the complete quiet and calm.

In my fridge you’ll always find smoked salmon and blinis; I travel a lot but like to have something in case friends drop by. There’s also a bottle of Cos d’Estournel Blanc; I like its fresh, fruity flavour and stay particularly loyal because I helped design the chais at Château Cos d’Estournel.

If I weren’t doing what I do, I would be a sculptor. I particularly admire the work of Renaissance sculptor Jean de Bologne and would love to create such beautiful, lasting works of art.

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