On & Around the Street

Ten Things You Need To Know About The Chanel Resort Show In Cuba

This week, Chanel took 600 people to Cuba for the latest of its far-flung resort collections. Here are the 10 things you need to know…

1 – Stella Tennant opened the show, which was closed by a finalé of sequin minidresses in spearmint, yellow, and peach (below).

2 – The six hundred guests of Chanel were taken to the open-air street show in a multicoloured cavalcade of 170 of the city’s open-top Buicks, Cadillacs, and Cadillacs, with the cars’ owners tooting their horns all the way there (below).

3 – The show itself was held at the Paseo Del Prado, one of the city’s most iconic thoroughfares. At the request of the Cuban president, it was redesigned in 1928 by French landscape architect Jean-Claude Nicolas Forestier. It features eight bronze lions by French sculptor Jean Puiforcat and Cuban sculptor Juan Comas, a poetic link between France and Cuba and also a nod to one of Chanel’s key house emblems, the lion.

4 – Another clever tie-in – the berets worn by the models. Vraiment Français but also indelibly linked with Che Guevara. There were sparkly black ones worn throughout the show.

5 – The other Franco-Cuban flourish: a performance by Ibeyi (below), the French-Cuban musical duo consisting of twin sisters Lisa-Kaindé Diaz and Naomi Diaz. They performed at the beginning of the show, hot on the heels of their appearance in Beyoncé’s “Lemonade”.

6 – The catwalk was 160 metres long, with guests sitting on either side in the open air. And, because of fears about the Zika virus, Chanel fumigated the entire space as well as every other venue on the guests’ four-day itinerary.

7 – The night’s most surprise VIP guest? Vin Diesel, who was in town shooting “Fast & Furious 8”. Vanessa Paradis, Alice Dellal, Gisele Bundchen and Tilda Swinton were also among the crowd.

Vin Diesel

8 – The Spencer is the new jacket shape you need to know about (below). Actually, it’s not that new, it dates from the 1790s and was originally a woollen outer tail-coat with the tails omitted. It was named after George Spencer, 2nd Earl Spencer (1758–1834), who is said to have adapted a tail-coat after its tails were burned by coals from a fire. British military officers adopted it as mess dress, and it was also soon adopted as a popular women’s fashion on both sides of the Atlantic during the 1790–1820 Regency style period.

Chanel's take on the Spencer jacket

9 – Guests stayed at the Hotel Nacional, formerly popular with local mafia.

10 – Currently, you’re unable to actually buy Chanel products, except from its perfume and cosmetics, anywhere in Cuba.

Alice Dellal

Images via Instagram.com/sarahmower_, Instagram.com/_leao_thiago, AP – Ramon Espinosa and Vogue.com