hat will 2022 look like for luxury lovers? While we won't pretend to be fortune tellers (goodness knows the last two years have taught us the fallibility of predicting anything past the end of next week), there are a few things we hope will happen this year. Holidays, for example, look set to become more certain – and there are plenty of new luxury hotels opening in 2022 to set course for. It may also be finally time to step out of your loungewear and into fashion-forward pieces from the industry's chicest movers and shakers. And, if all else fails, there will be plenty of ways to upgrade your wellbeing through interior design trends and new beauty launches this year. Here's our guide to the trends, launches and luxury openings to have on your radar for 2022.
The label: Phoebe Philo
The greatest fashion news of 2021 was the announcement that Phoebe Philo, the British designer who led Céline from 2008 to 2017, was set to launch her own eponymous womenswear label. During her time at Céline, Philo crafted a quietly confident, straightforward and comfortable style that appealed to women everywhere: timeless cashmere jumpers, languid tailoring and long slit dresses were her calling cards, in a palette of fawn, navy and burgundy. It became an era-defining aesthetic that created a loyal tribe of Philophiles. Even Victoria Beckham swapped her stilettos for a pair of pristine white Stan Smith trainers (a Philo signature). The Céline woman was thought to be intelligent, measured and achingly cool, as demonstrated when Philo cast the late Joan Didion in her spring/summer 2015 campaign (pictured above).
Prior to working at Céline, Philo was creative director of Chloé from 2001 to 2006. LVMH has a minority stake in her new brand but she has been quick to stress that “to be independent, to govern and experiment on my own terms is hugely significant to me.” More details are to be announced in January.
The sale: YNAP
Richemont, the Swiss luxury goods conglomerate that owns the Yoox Net-a-Porter group, is reportedly in advanced discussions to sell a minority stake in the e-commerce platform to Farfetch. The move is set to appease stakeholders, who have been left unimpressed by YNAP’s continued losses.
Net-a-Porter’s founder, Natalie Massenet, joined Farfetch in 2017 as a non-executive co-chairman, before departing in 2020. Richemont has said that it hopes to turn Net-a-Porter into 'a neutral, industry-wide retail platform' with no controlling shareholder, and it is also talking with interested parties aside from Farfetch. Watch this space.
The retail concept: Borough Yards
2020 was a testing time for bricks-and-mortar retail, but it wasn’t all bad. While many high street chains struggled, we rejoiced at the rise of experiential concept stores. This included a new Browns flagship in Mayfair backed by Farfetch, with high-tech, interactive dressing rooms and a Native restaurant onsite, and a multisensory Gucci pop-up in Shoreditch. Brands are enticing shoppers away from their touch screens and onto the street through innovative retail concepts and spaces with added wow-factor.
Gucci is set to move from its longtime corner site on Old Bond Street to 144-146 New Bond Street this autumn, while Balenciaga will soon unveil its anticipated new emporium, also on New Bond Street. Gymshark, too, is opening its first standalone store on Regent Street, following multimillion-dollar investment, alongside On, the sustainable Swiss trainer brand with a cult following. Most excitingly, Borough Yards will open this spring near London Bridge. Fifty new shops and restaurants are moving into the space, which was previously a dusty labyrinth of disused warehouses, arches, and viaducts. Participating retailers are set to be announced soon.
The hotel: Raffles London at The OWO
Not even a pandemic could slow down London's booming hotel scene. An exciting number of new properties are set to open this year, including One Hundred Shoreditch, which has taken over the space formerly occupied by the Ace Hotel, and Europe's first Raffles hotel. The Singaporean chain's London debut occupies a sprawling swathe of Whitehall, which includes Sir Winston Churchill’s Old War Office. It is also where Ian Fleming dreamt up 007 while working for Britain’s Naval Intelligence Division and the building also features in several James Bond films. The prestigious address, which is staunchly steeped in British history, is set to be an international pleasuredome for the super-rich, with 120 rooms, a spa and no less than 11 glitzy restaurants. Three of these will be run by legendary chef Mauro Colagreco, one of which promises to be a cutting-edge chef’s table.
The sale was part of a £5bn Whitehall downsizing effort to reduce running costs and the hotel is complemented by 85 turnkey residences, with interiors by design firm 1508 London. The £40 million four-bed penthouse was recently snapped up and at around £11,000 per sq ft, it is the highest amount ever paid for a property in London.
In other hotel announcements, the new owner of the Selfridges brand, the Central Group, is planning to open a hotel as part of an €8 billion expansion project.
The members’ club: Gleneagles Townhouse, Edinburgh
Gleneagles, Scotland’s grand golfing and leisure resort in Perthshire, is opening its first urban outpost in the heart of Edinburgh this year. Occupying a former Bank of Scotland building, this polished hotel and members’ club will boast 33 bedrooms, an all-day restaurant and two bars, one of which is on the roof with far-reaching views across the city. The old bank vault is being transformed into a serene, state-of-the-art spa and members can also expect a lively calendar of exclusive events. In true Gleneagles style, expect a flawless blend of period detail and modern design, with a hearty kick of Scottish flair.
The destination: Comporta, Portugal
The unspoiled Portuguese surf town of Comporta flashed up all over Instagram during the summer of 2021 as the high-end holiday destination of choice for celebrities, wealthy influencers and entrepreneurs. Dubbed the Hamptons of Portugal, properties start at around €1m, while those in the know stay at the glamorous Quinta da Comporta hotel, which boasts whitewashed, rustic interiors by Portuguese architect and designer Miguel Câncio Martins. Christian Louboutin is also set to open his own hotel in the area.
Food and drink
The restaurant: Lisboeta
Chef Nuno Mendes is set to rejoin London’s culinary scene by opening Lisboeta in Fitzrovia. As its name suggests, the restaurant will capture the spirit of Lisbon, which champions custard tarts for breakfast and laidback dining long into the night. Mendes was previously executive chef at Chiltern Firehouse before running the kitchen at Mãos in Shoreditch.
The comeback: The Ledbury
West Londoners mourned the closure of two Michelin-starred restaurant The Ledbury in Notting Hill in 2020, when it failed to reopen following lockdown. Now it’s coming back, with a full refurb and a completely new team. Kitchen maestro Brett Graham is still in charge, but he is assuming the role of owner rather than chef. Few details have been revealed and there is no official opening date, but it is rumoured that the restaurant will take a more informal approach to dining, swapping its white tablecloths for a brasserie-style setting.
The concept: Yhangry
Hire a private chef for your home with Yhangry, a surprisingly affordable and innovative new service that is disrupting the dinner party circuit. The platform aims to become the Deliveroo or Uber of the chef world, with meals starting from £17 per head. Budding hosts can select from more than 29 different dishes, spanning Italian, Mexican and Middle Eastern, as well as vegan and low carb options. You can also add wine boxes and pre-mixed cocktails, so all you have to worry about is your tablescape. The concept was launched in 2019 by former Barclays traders Heinin Zhang and Siddhi Mittal and raised $1.5 million (£1.09 million) in seed funding, and also counts Ollie Locke as an investor.
Property & Interiors
The trend: renting
Investing in a major piece of furniture can be a daunting prospect. The worry that one might splash out on a new sofa, statement armchair or piece of art to find that it doesn’t look or fit as originally hoped can be overwhelming. Thankfully, a rise in furniture rental services now allow you to try before you buy. Leading the charge is Harth, which was founded by Wallpaper* magazine’s editor-at-large, Henrietta Thompson, 40, and her entrepreneur husband, Ed Padmore. The platform offers an enticing array of furniture, home accessories and art to rent, with a focus on mid-century furniture and Danish design.
The address: Lancer Square, Kensington
Lancer Square is an ultra-prime development nestled near High Street Kensington. It is the first London-based project by Malaysian developer Bellworth and has been designed by notable British firm Squire and Partners. Strictly for those with exceptionally deep pockets, two buildings house 36 properties, which start at £4.6m. Residents can enjoy 7,000 sq ft of exclusive amenities including a gym, spa, 20m swimming pool and treatment rooms. Confirmed retailers thus far include LVMH Perfumes & Cosmetics, which has relocated to W8 from Oxford Street.
Health, beauty and wellbeing
The ingredient: Retinal
No, that isn’t a spelling mistake. Retinol is out and retinal is in. It is shorthand for retinaldehyde, the most potent retinoid you can buy without a prescription. When used carefully, it promotes skin cell turnover, boosts collagen production and reduces the appearance of fine lines. Try Medik8 Crystal Retinal 3 Serum or Allies of Skin 1A Retinal & Peptides Overnight Mask.
The trend: refilling
In recent years, the beauty industry has woken up to sustainability and the majority of brands are now prioritising cruelty-free formulas and responsibly sourced ingredients. Refillable beauty is the much-welcome packaging trend that puts the planet first. Byredo launched its Refillable Eyebrow Pencil in November, and Charlotte Tilbury has been offering refills on many of its bestselling products for some time. Susanne Kaufmann, a brand already lauded for its natural ingredients and sustainable ethos, recently introduced a plastic pouch that allows you to refill your favourite Susanne Kauffman glass bottles. The pouch is made from 75% recycled materials and is also 100% recyclable.
The destination: Cavendish Square
Permission has been granted by Westminster City Council to transform Cavendish Square near Oxford Circus into a subterranean health and wellbeing development. The £150 million project will total 280,000sq ft, digging four storeys below ground level to create an underground wellness mecca that links Harley Street, Oxford Street and Regent Street. Construction will not be completed until 2023 but the project will unfold throughout the year, as leaders from the health and wellbeing industry come on board.
The workout: BXR, City of London
BXR, the London boxing gym backed by Anthony Joshua, is opening its first City of London outpost in February. Towering above Whitehall on the 25th floor of 22 Bishopsgate, it will feature one of the highest climbing walls in London at 6.5 metres, as well as a signature boxing gym. 22 Bishopsgate is the newly crowned tallest skyscraper in the City of London, with 62 floors of office space and amenities.