Hotelier Will Cooper: ‘Creativity is constant contradiction’

An expression of my personal style White clothes are worn throughout the year. It’s funny how the majority of the population wear dark clothes so they really stand out. White is easy and clears my eyes and soul. And I always wear a crystal bracelet or two for protection – usually rainbow obsidian, or amethyst if I need to open my third eye, or tiger eye if I need to protect my energy. Some come from Pantelleria, some from a wonderful place called Crystals Park on 10th Street in the East Village.

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Crystals and ceramics in Cooper’s “energy center” © Clement Pascal

The last thing I bought and loved was the Stan Ray OG Painter Pants. White, of course. They are made in my home state of Texas and I wear them almost every day.

Best souvenir I ever brought home Patè di capperi e pistacchio from Pantelleria. You won’t find it anywhere else in the world, and I always bring it home to use on eggs in the morning to pretend I’m in Italy.

My fashion icons trio: architect Renzo Mongiardino, luxurious, divinely gifted and influential. Ward Bennett is a chameleon able to work between the decorative and the modern, creating some of the most beautiful homes in the world. And Gianni Agnelli. No explanation needed.

Ash 001 candle, $145, Available November

Ash 001 candle, $145, available November, © Clement Pascal

Best gift ever is one of my new Ash scented candles. I worked with a great nose in Paris to develop this fragrance; The brief was to create a festive, edgy and romantic Dorian Gray vibe. It has a base of nutmeg, carrot seed, white amber, patchouli and tobacco. The top burns quickly and you get the essence of a really beautiful tree. The vessel is modeled after a Doric column base and is designed to live with you forever as a vase, coin jar, glass, whatever you desire.

Hotelier Will Cooper at his home in New York
Hotel owner Will Cooper at his home in New York © Clement Pascal

And the best gift I ever received always intangible – a journey or experience. In December 2020 I was taken to Machu Picchu. It was hardly opened; no one traveled. According to people who worked there, the only time it was ever this quiet and deserted was when the Pope came. Not to say woo-woo, but it was truly life-changing. This place is like a vortex – very magical. So being there almost alone was a real gift.

My latest music downloads Tchaikovsky’s Piano Concerto was #1. He wrote only three piano concertos in his life. I first heard it was done by Yuja Wang and it happened at midnight; I was awake and found it on YouTube. It’s this beautiful, narrative musical progression that takes you through so many hills and valleys. In the video, this pianist is almost in tears while playing. Now I listen to it when I need to de-clutter.

His collection of ashtrays and matches
His collection of ashtrays and matches © Clement Pascal

I have a collection countless ashtrays and matching matches from all over the world. And another type art object in the form of small animals – I try to bring one with me wherever I go. Indian elephants, Peruvian bulls, and many others.

Arianna Occhipinti SP68 Rosso 2021 in Cooper's cooler

Arianna Occhipinti SP68 Rosso 2021 Cooper cooler © Clement Pascal

You will always find it in my fridge good parmigiano reggiano, organic eggs, organic avocado, Acqua Panna, coffee from Morettino in Sicily – I love the Mediterranean blend – an organic chilled red made by Arianna Occhipinti.

I just found out A Vienna that I had never been to and oh my god I loved it. Thomas Rainer, an artisan floor specialist in historic forests, took me along – he restores parquet floors in museums and palaces there, as well as in the lobby of the Hotel Ulysses. It’s like a secret European dream: so clean, so beautiful. The people are very nice.

Cooper keeps coffee and avocados in his fridge

Cooper keeps coffee and avocados in the fridge © Clement Pascal

Something I couldn’t have done without it sleep eight hours a night. I like to go to bed by 9:30pm and get up before 6am. 6-8 am is my favorite time. I make a mocha and start writing down my ideas, or I start to get rid of the previous day’s ideas.

The kind of generosity I can never let go of It’s summer in Italy. How everyone unites around this central idea of ​​a way of life is a strong sense of people and national identity. You can be in so many different places like Milan, Venice, Umbria, and then if you go south it’s a whole different world. I love that countries are endless worlds within worlds, but share a basic function of how people live. None of this American rat race nonsense.

Blue suede charvet slippers
Blue suede charvet sandals © Clément Pascal

The latest piece of clothing I’ve added to my wardrobe Charvet socks and slippers; I recently stocked up while I was in Paris. And a beautiful Dior suit – it’s a deep blue with very fine stripes. The classic line is always the same as Dior menswear, but made with unusual fabrics.

A rose that belonged to Cooper's grandmother

Rosary that belonged to Cooper’s grandmother © Clement Pascal

An object I will never part with This is my grandmother’s rose that my mother gave me after she passed. He came from Spain, was very religious, and had Mary births several times a day. I want the Rosary to plant an early seed in my life and create a bond with Media. It makes me feel like he is always with me.

A single artist who would collect his works if possible Wilhelm Hammershoi. He paints still lifes in the Danish style of the 19th century. They have such an elegant light. The interior is often very ornate and decorated, but they are suppressed by its light. They excite me and excite me. I relate to that in my work because it’s the hardest thing to capture dimensionally: How do you want someone to be in a space? I want to look at his pictures and understand what kind of life goes on in that room.

I never have a hairstyle This is Golconda by JAR, my scent. It reminds me of Paris, especially in June where it’s light until 11pm. Also QMS Epigen Pollution Defense Day & Night Gel-Ointment and Intensive Eye Care Day & Night Eye Cream. They keep my skin so tight that I’ve had several people ask if I’ve had botox. I won’t. QMS Epigen Gel-Ointment£118 for 50ml, and Eye cream£128 for 15ml

Favorite room in my house? In the morning, I sit in a small slipper chair in my living room, drink coffee, write on the coffee table, and move around the floor to start working. If I’m not doing Muay Thai, I’ll be doing yoga in a room. When I get home from the office, I lie down on the coffee table and stare into space for a while. Being in that space is so relaxing because everything is white.

Tomb of I'timad-ud-Daulah at Agra
Tomb of I’timad-ud-Daulah in Agra © worldwidephotoweb/Getty Images

My favorite building This is the mausoleum of I’timad-ud-Daulah or “The Child Taj” in Agra, India. I often think of it as a sketch of the Taj Mahal, and I find its intimacy and hand-painted walls very interesting.

My hair and health teachers I’m a neighborhood barber on 9th Street in the East Village that I’ve been going to since I moved to New York almost 15 years ago. Also, Fit Ritual trainer Helena Radulovic who does Muay Thai around the corner from my house. We first catch up on neighborhood gossip—mostly about how many cruffins we ate the day before at S&B on 7th Street—and then get down to business.

Cooper includes books in his carry-on
Cooper counts books as one of the most important items in his carry-on © Clement Pascal

A work of art that changed everything for me is Cardsharps, painted c1595 by Caravaggio. I grew up in Fort Worth, Texas, and as a child I would visit the Louis I Kahn-designed Kimbell Museum of Art, built in 1972. I have fond memories of seeing that picture at a very young age, maybe in my second year. degree. The theme captured children’s interest because it depicted a young boy in theatrical costume cheating at a card game. I revisit the picture every Christmas and today I see it as a life lesson about deception and innocence.

My carry-on essentials earplugs and eye mask always – I really like what Air France gives you, it’s so pillowy and soft. Books of course: my mom is a life coach and when I was little she was always into Eckhart Tolle and stuff like that. As a result, I like to have a grounding book on a plane with such an unreasonable climate.

A book written by Ward Bennett, one of his fashion icons

A book by Ward Bennett, one of his fashion icons © Clement Pascal

The best advice I ever received? Creativity is a constant conflict. I saw it in Williamsburg, where it had an office many years before I heard it. I remember being at the table and seeing these words very clearly in the book. Being able to live comfortably in the tension between two conflicting things is creation. The truth of this struck me immediately.

A place that means a lot to me It is the Mediterranean Sea. I think this is the most magical and healing water in the world. In the lucky countries that border Italy, Greece or Lebanon, there is something mysterious about something bigger than itself. People really know how to live on Media.

JAR Golconda fragrances are included in his collection of paintings
JAR The fragrance of Golconda is part of his collection of paintings © Clément Pascal

Travel informs the projects I’m working on; Whether it’s a small architectural detail or a complete concept, I always draw inspiration from travel and integrate it wherever the project is at the time. Or sometimes, to the annoyance of my crew, completely rework something based on the trip. It’s always better in the end. Since I’m seeing something new for the first time, long distance travel often gives me the best ideas, but internal travel is essential to understanding the local fabric in which I work.

A podcast I’m listening to? Podcasts are not my thing. I’m a visual learner – I prefer to read and watch. but Home business They have interesting topics, so I listen to them occasionally.

In another life, I would be like that academic or professor. I enjoy doing research and sharing my findings with those who are interested. I am always curious. In another life, I think it would have been incredibly satisfying to share this with young minds and inspire something to help them find their way.

Just read about Cristina Moreno for Ombia Studio Slab Table 02

A recent read on Cristina Moreno for Ombia Studio Slab Table 02 © Clement Pascal

The best book I have read in the last year is The courage to create Written by Rollo May. He is an existential psychologist who wrote this book in 1975, which describes how fear can be a reaction to what happens within a culture, and how creativity comes from understanding and overcoming these fears. The teachings are as relevant today as they were when he wrote them.


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