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Indulging an Adult Body and Mind

梅田美佐子

GINZA SIX EDITORS Vol.96

I’m the editor-in-chief of the beauty magazine & ROSY, a publication geared towards adults. Our content tends to target people who prefer more sophisticated looks or loftier aesthetic standards—people who always focus on what works well for them. That means an important part of my job is observing the makeup, fashion, and accessories of the people wandering around the wonderful boutiques of Ginza.

Having said this, in reality, it’s hard to find the time for leisurely strolls around Ginza. I end up just walking down the streets on my way to a cosmetics show, checking out spots along the way. I often go to GINZA SIX. The extensive Beauty Floor on the first belowground floor is well worth anyone’s time. I look to see what brands are popular, how the customers at the counters have beauty advisors do their makeup. For all I know, people may regard me as a suspicious character!

When I’m done with these investigations, I take little breaks. GINZA SIX gives me inspiration for my magazine. At the same time, I love all the great stores I find here for indulging my tired self. Today, I’ll introduce some spots where we adults can indulge a little.

First up is L’Occitane Atelier de Provence on the Beauty Floor, the first belowground floor. Both a cosmetics boutique and a café, this spacious store is designed to resemble an atelier in the Provence region of southern France.

On entering the shop, I immediately notice the colorful bottles of the 86 Champs Collection, a collaboration with Pierre Hermé Paris, a French pastry boutique. L’Occitane founder Olivier Baussan and pâtissier Pierre Hermé are close friends, I’m told. Speaking of which, it’s nice how the colors of the fragrances recall a palette of macarons.

Of the six fragrances, the most popular is Raspberry & Matcha Green Tea (90 ml, 15,000 yen; all prices listed before tax). This, I’m told, is especially popular among customers visiting Japan from abroad. The rich matcha aroma blends with the pleasant tartness of the berry to create a unique fragrance sphere. I’m a fan of the Mandarin & Immortelle (90 ml, 15,000 yen), with its fragrance of the flowers that symbolize the brand. The fresh citrus and invigorating immortelle make for a bracing blend.

If I were buying this as a gift for a friend, I would definitely have it wrapped in fabric in one of the L’Occitane colors. You can also have your friend’s name printed on the ribbon. The person receiving the gift gets the added delight of the fabric and dry immortelle flowers, which could then be displayed on a table. It’s an ethical, conscientious, and stylish touch.

After making my purchase, I’m spellbound by the hand treatment. It’s not always offered when the store is crowded, but this wonderful service is otherwise available at no cost when you buy a cosmetic product. I feel tension dissipate as I take in the aromas of the hand cream or body milk. I feel my work-induced burdens and fatigue lift and fade.

Next, I cross to the café booth. Here, I begin by checking out the Flavored Extra Virgin Olive Oil developed by Olivier Baussan. With Mandarin (100 ml, 1,700 yen), Basil (100 ml, 1,500 yen), and more, the lineup will expand anyone’s culinary horizons.

From the café menu, I firmly recommend the parfait. GINZA SIX offers many places to enjoy parfaits, all delicious, but this is my absolute favorite. You get both a fresh parfait with seasonal fruit and the opportunity to relax in a spacious atmosphere.

This time, I order the Strawberry Rose Parfait (1,000 yen). It features strawberry ice cream, like strawberry paste that’s been frozen, pleasantly sweet rose ice cream, and crispy biscuits, topped with fresh strawberries. L’Occitane’s cafés actually got their start in Japan before expanding around the world. It’s easy to see why something this delicious would be the envy of the world.

Now I’ll tell you about the Gallery of Sweets Art by Papabubble, on the second belowground floor, another ideal place to indulge yourself. Launched in Barcelona, Papabubble now operates stores in more than 30 cities around the world. Still, this is the only location that displays artwork made from candy. A store with art as its theme—very much in the spirit of GINZA SIX.

On display today is Candy Pool, a work by Kunihiko Nohara, artist and sculptor. It’s an objet of a girl (?) wearing a ribbon and sunglasses, but the ribbon is a lollipop, and her hair is gummy and candy. The sunglasses are made with a profusion of candy, like marshmallows and gummy!

Here before me, as art, is the candy house I dreamt of as a child. And, for 180,000 yen, you can actually buy it. I picture the delight among my editors if I returned with this to the office…

It’s not necessarily art, but of course there’s lots of candy that would make perfect gifts or souvenirs. Gummy Candy (9 for 1,019 yen), available to sample, comes in juicy fruit flavors like strawberry and orange and various matching colors, an inspirational mouthful of flavors.

The most popular item is Rocky Road (1 for 797 yen), an imposing piece of rum-raison flavored chocolate with cookies and marshmallows. If you’re counting calories, this is something you might want to share with a friend!

I feel I’ve indulged myself abundantly thus far, but there’s one more can’t-miss place on our little tour of adult indulgence: the Ironbark Grill & Bar on the sixth floor. 100% Grass-fed beef, lamb, and other delicacies from Australia are arranged in Japanese styles—unique fare offered at a modern Australian eatery. With some 200 champagnes and wines, Ironbark Grill & Bar also offers an impressive wine cellar.

Just inside the entrance is a cool bar area. Step farther inside, and you’ll find a relaxed lounge with roomy sofas and comfortable chairs. Beyond the lounge are the stylish restaurant spaces. Each of the three areas has its own style. Each is ideal for a different occasion, whether for those seeking just a drink or those with sights set on a lavish dinner. Restaurants with windows on two walls are rare, even at GINZA SIX: Come here to gaze out to your heart’s content on the night lights of Ginza.

Say you’re attending a cosmetics show at a later hour. I’d suggest the lounge space here as the picture-perfect solution if someone says, “Do you want to grab a bite?”

I order the fresh oysters (from 1 for 600 yen) to go with a dry champagne. The simple version with squeezed lemon is essential, while the sweet, creamy version with amazake cream and caviar is one of the restaurant’s signature flavors. Definitely try the oysters—they’re unforgettably delicious.

The restaurant’s staff are professionals, both friendly and sophisticated. Tell them what you have in mind. They’ll recommend dishes to match.

The oysters are so good, I order a second glass of champagne without thinking. The food is wonderful. The comfort of the sofa is so hard to give up… I end up staying for quite a while. But the time I spend here proves worthwhile in other ways—I spend it listening to the expansive opinions of a writer and editor from another magazine regarding our latest April issue of & ROSY.

After these sojourns of indulgence at GINZA SIX, I always feel reenergized for my next project. I return to work with a positive spirit; at the same time, I long for the next time I’ll be back. For me, GINZA SIX is like a power station.

Text: Misako Umeda / Yumiko Kazama Photos: Mari Yoshioka Edit: Yuka Okada(81)

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梅田美佐子

女性美容杂志"&ROSY"主编。被在1997年到宝岛社进公司。"CUTiE"(kyuti)编辑部,"sweet"(suuito)在编辑的美容负责。在2015年就任"sweet"的副主编。对2016年9月"&ROSY"主编。

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L'OCCITANE Atelier de Provence

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糖果美术馆 by PAPABUBBLE

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Ironbark Grill & Bar

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2020.03.19 UP