Melissa Odabash’s Jupiter and Palm Beach

The American-born, London-based bikini model-turned-swimwear designer is known for her über-glamorous cover-ups and flattering one-pieces

Melissa Odabash
Melissa Odabash | Image: Jeffrey Salter

“My parents have had a house in Jupiter for decades. It’s a small, pretty town with Spanish‑inspired terracotta roofs and a relaxed beachy atmosphere. Eight years ago I bought my own home in a little gated complex full of palm trees and bougainvillea.  

On Saturdays I’ll get up early and go for a run on the beach and then swim in the ocean to cool down. I’ll head home and shower before cycling to Nature’s Way, a health‑food shop and café, for a protein shake. Back at the house, I’ll meet my daughters – Alaia, 15, named after my favourite designer, and Avalon, 10, named after my favourite record – hide their computers and send them to the beach. The heat gets too much for my husband Nicolas, so he’s happiest by our pool.

At lunchtime we’ll bike to my favourite restaurant Guanabanas, a Cuban place on an inlet that looks like a tropical paradise. I always have shrimp skewers with black beans, rice and plantain, and iced tea. We’ll stay there watching the boats go by until about 4pm, when we’ll go paddle-boarding around the bay.

If it’s too hot to be on the water, I’ll go to Palm Beach Vintage, a shop full of pre‑loved designer pieces. I last bought a 1970s Fendi leather clutch and have my eye on a crocheted Missoni jacket. Or I’ll go for a superb Swedish massage at Pure Bliss Day Spa. I have one every other day when I’m in Jupiter because I work like crazy in London. They also do a dermaplaning facial, which leaves my skin feeling soft as a baby’s.

For dinner we’ll go to Café des Artistes by Jupiter Yacht Club and sit outside. It is European in style and the waiters are French and very flirty. Afterwards, we’ll pop to the famous Palm Beach Ice Cream parlour and I’ll choose chocolate, which I’ve been having there since I was a child.

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On Sunday I’ll go to Gold’s Gym with a trainer, then take the girls to the country club, Jonathan’s Landing. They have their tennis lesson while my mother and I hit the golf range. My late father was a golf fanatic; I’m not much good, but I love it.

We’ll have brunch at the club. It’s one of those mighty American buffets, with bacon, sausages, waffles and every type of maple syrup. It’s my daughters’ idea of heaven; they eat healthily, but I let them have Sundays off. I’ll have an omelette, but can’t resist a bite of their waffles.

I’ll leave Avalon with Nicolas and take Alaia and my mother to Palm Beach. My mother is an interiors obsessive so we’ll browse Antique Row, where I recently bought a stunning 1970s desk lamp. We’ll also stroll down Worth Avenue, home to the fine jewellery stores. I’ve never seen gems like it; it’s surreal and very Palm Beach. We might also pop into a few open houses – or mansions – for inspiration.

Early afternoon we’ll go to The Breakers Hotel right on the ocean – it’s very old‑money and great for people-watching. The locals play cards or croquet, and we’ll have carrot cake and English tea.

Back home I’ll often go rollerblading for an hour. I can turn, but can’t stop, so I just grab a palm tree or jump onto the grass. There aren’t many cars so I’m reasonably safe.

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At cocktail hour we’ll go for a drink at a beautiful new place called U-Tiki Beach, in front of the lighthouse. My mother loves Italian food, so we’ll have dinner at Buonasera. If we’ve eaten a lot, we’ll go for an evening bike ride. Otherwise I’ll watch Devious Maids, a very funny drama Julien Macdonald introduced me to. The sea air and the exercise leave me ready for an early bed and I’ll fall asleep to the sounds of crickets and frogs.”

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