CHANEL'S RIVIERA: Life, Love and The Struggle for Survival

CHANEL'S RIVIERA: Life, Love and The Struggle for Survival

ANNE DE COURCY    Book Number: 89162    Product format: Paperback

Coco Chanel may have been the best dress designer in history and the French Riviera was arguably one of the most famous pieces of coastline. In 1930, the two cultural titans were combined when Chanel built her glamorous villa, La Pausa there. Although she had apartments in Paris and lived at Paris' Ritz from 1934, La Pausa was built to her specifications and hers alone, her sanctuary every Summer season. The coastline was made glamorous by figures such as the Murphys, Fitzgeralds, Hemingways and their friends with pre-war parties and casinos bustling in the glittering cities of Antibes, Nice and Cannes. However, this time was also encroached upon by the horrors of the displacement of thousands during the Second World War. Moments of Chanel's life are paired with famous quotes from the woman herself, from her torrid love life where she famously said, 'my love life got very disorganised', to assertions on her own, pared-down style ('To my mind, simplicity is the keynote of all true elegance'). Learn how her meeting with Dmitri Goldwyn in Monte Carlo in 1931 led to a business venture with Goldwyn proposing that Chanel dress his stars both on and off screen for a million dollars and feel your heart break as you discover how the Riviera, and specifically La Pausa, was also the location of Chanel's anguish with her lover Paul Iribe dying following a heart attack he suffered on her tennis court. Marvel at how Chanel approached the German Hans Günther von Dincklage (or 'Spatz' as his friends called him) to try and find a way to free her nephew André Palasse who was among 300,000 prisoners of war in 1940. The two later entered into a love affair, boosting Chanel's heart after the tragic loss of Iribe and filling the emptiness she felt at closing her couture house. Despite Chanel's affair with von Dincklage, her home in the Riviera was central in facilitating the escape of Jews. Robert Streitz, who had designed La Pausa, had installed a transmitter in an alcove in the basement which he would use to organise escape attempts during the war. The style of Chanel is captured not only in words but also in brilliant images including Chanel in stylish striped shirt and culottes in her garden with the dog, wrapped up in furs while walking with Bendor, the Duke of Westminster, or languishing on the beach with Boy Capel in 1917. With original research and social history that present both the glamour and gloom of the French Riviera and Chanel's relationship with it, this is a touching and intelligent book for anyone who loves France, fashion and fascinating history. paperback, colour and black and white images, 294pp.
Published price: £14.99
Bibliophile price: £6.50

Additional product information

ISBN 9781474608206
Browse these categories as well: Last Chance to buy!, War Memoirs, Biography/Autobiography, Modern History/Current Affairs

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