If you don’t know the name Anouki Areshidze, you’re not alone. But in Georgia, you’d be hard pressed to find someone who doesn’t. The 26-year-old fashionista first emerged onto the scene when she started her namesake ready-to-wear and accessories line Anouki in 2013. She quickly built a following among fellow Georgian It-girls and local personalities, who lust after the line for its unique spin on casual wear, off-the-shoulder dress shirts, and brightly hued separates she embroiders with flowers or tassels and pompoms. Over the weekend during Tbilisi Fashion Week, she debuted her Fall 2017 collection, which was inspired by mid-century Georgian poetry and set to a color palette of nebula violets and soft grays. When the Georgian native isn’t working on her next collection, she is dedicatedly posting her daily looks and happenings on her Instagram page. Here, the designer and Instagram star gives us the lay of the land of her hometown.
What are three words to describe Tbilisi:
Colorful, warm and super friendly!
Favorite restaurant for the best traditional Georgian meal:
Bread House has the most delicious Georgian food. My favorite is the fresh baked tone puri (bread), which they cook in front of you in a traditional Georgian oven called a tone.
Favorite fashion trend you currently see in Tbilisi:
The ’90s are back—you can’t deny it. Cool kids in Tbilisi have adopted the trend and I think the style looks quite authentic on them, because that’s how most of the Georgians, including myself, dressed back in ’90s in the post-Soviet era.
Favorite place to shop:
It actually depends what you’re looking for—we have all kinds of clothing stores here in Tbilisi, so there is really something for everyone. My first recommendation is to look for Georgian designer stores, (such as Lalo or Chardin One) where you can find something exclusive and unique to Georgia. As for contemporary shopping, the hottest spots in Tbilisi are CHAOS Concept Store and Pierrot Le Fou. Tbilisi is also a perfect place for antique shopping, and the Dry Bridge Market has the best selection. There you can find anything from old record vinyls to really beautiful tea sets.
What is Tbilisi’s best kept secret:
I’ve recently found a small, very nice café called Book Corner Café, on the bank of the river Mtkvari. It has a really cozy atmosphere that offers a break from the busy everyday city routine. I always order a cup of coffee and a slice of strawberry cake.
Favorite way to relax or unwind:
Every weekend I spend my time in Tskneti, which is a small town in the countryside outside of Tbilisi. It’s the best place to relax on a weekend with family, and I love playing football with my kids. I have a small flower garden there and I love taking care of flowers, they somehow inspire me a lot. On Sundays, our family friends come to visit us and we have evening barbecues with Georgian red wine.
Favorite bar or nightclub to let loose:
Bassiani takes the leading spot not only among Georgians, but it’s very popular with International clubbers and artists. Tbilisi has become like Berlin with its music scene.
Favorite spot for lunch:
Everyday I have lunch in the kitchen of my atelier with my staff at 3 o’clock. It’s like a “holy hour” for us, and we never plan any meetings at that time. We have so much fun during that one hour break. If I go outside for a lunch, I usually choose café O, Moda, Moda. They have a best omelet and carpaccio in Tbilisi. You should sit in their open garden in a sunny day and drink one of their iced cocktails.
Favorite place for dinner with friends:
I love visiting the Dining Rooms. Their Raviolli and shrimps in berries sauce is incredible. If you are looking for a fancier spot, Rooms Hotel is the go-to place for sure!