American creative consultant and fashion writer Olivia López arrived in Colombia alongside French photographer Mathieu Lebreton to discover a wide array of new and exciting design proposals. A few years ago, with a promising career in the industry after having created Lust for Life, Olivia decided to keep a record of all the key insights on new global trends she could gather on her trips around the world and share them through social media. Now, with more than 330K followers on Instagram, she accepted Colombia Country Brand’s invitation to get to know national trends up close and fall in love with local creations. Olivia flew over to the crossroads of the Americas to find a country full of surprises and a magical vibe:
Bogota: where design, art, and gastronomy meet.
The capital of Colombia greeted Olivia López in the best of ways. During her stay, she had an incredible first encounter with the city’s fashion scene as she strolled the streets of this metropolis that blends modern and colonial architecture. Here, she encountered various products with amazing features ranging from the beautiful colors and textures of traditional Colombian handicrafts, to the creativity and innovation of modern fashion statements. She also had the opportunity to discuss these subjects at length with many leading Colombian designers of global fame.
Although Olivia’s visit was focused on fashion, the culinary arts didn’t stay behind. With an open mind, she tasted lots of the different captivating flavors Bogota has to offer at both high-end restaurants and street food joints. She also discovered a huge variety of fruits in one of the most important markets of the city; a place that really showcases why Colombia’s natural richness places it as the second most biodiverse country in the world. The way tropical fruits and local flavors come together with foreign recipes creates a borderless culinary universe, which allowed our guests to try mind-blowing dishes.
Among Bogota’s flourishing art scene, one of the most traditional locations manages to keep attracting most of the city’s visitors: the unmissable museum complex in La Candelaria. Here, both Mathieu and Olivia had the chance to marvel at some of Fernando Botero’s most famous paintings, along with other remarkable modern art pieces that were part of his private collection, which he donated to the city in the year 2000.
Click the video below to discover Olivia’s visit in Bogota.
Providencia: a tiny piece of paradise in the middle of the Caribbean.
A sea of impossible blue hues, a refreshing tropical breeze and the ever-present Colombian joie de vivre were ready to greet Olivia at Providencia, a charming island located deep in the Caribbean Sea, a couple of hours by plane from Bogota’s El Dorado International Airport. In this secluded tropical paradise, nature embraces visitors and allows them to experience a completely different way of life. During her trip, Olivia relaxed in magnificent beaches and dove into the crystal-clear waters of the Caribbean to find treasures beneath the waves.
The charming, carefree island culture won over both travelers, compelling them to let loose and feel the rhythm of traditional Raizal music: a unique combination of instruments and melodies that bring diverse origins into the mix. Something special about this island is the fact that music lives in every corner of it, harmonies with the power to transport you even further away from ordinary life are carried everywhere by the warm breeze.
On her way through the archipelago, Olivia also enjoyed multiple local recipes prepared by locals who infuse these traditional seafood-based dishes with a charming, homey taste. This Caribean jewel provided our visitors with a much-needed break that would prepare them for the adventures awaiting them back in the mainland.
Click the video below to discover Olivia’s visit in Providencia.
Cartagena de Indias: the wonders of a walled city, open to the world.
Back on the fashion adventure, Olivia’s final stop was the iconic city of Cartagena, declared a World Cultural Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1984. On day one, the magical ambiance could be felt in every step our guests took along the walled city’s colonial streets, where some of the country’s most high-end boutiques opened their doors to them and introduced them to their work.
Colors, patterns, ruffles, gold, and much more impressed Olivia with many beautiful and authentic designs. Along the way, she got the chance to meet her favorite Colombian designer, and learned about the immense role culture can play as a source of endless inspiration for an entire industry.
Their stay was also rendered unforgettable thanks to the various flavors they encountered: Olivia and Mathieu took pleasure in tasting the delightful dishes prepared by some of the best restaurants in the country. They even received a special coffee-tasting certification after a quick course with experts on the subject.
As Colombia’s inherent diversity dictates, not everything was about fashion and history. The couple’s journey ended with a little day-trip to even more beautiful beaches and seascapes just an hour away by boat from Cartagena, far from the crowds in the city. Yet another paradise where worries are forgotten and visitors realize what the pleasure of living truly means.
Click the video below to discover Olivia’s visit in Cartagena.
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