For most people, taking a vacation is something we can occasionally splurge on, but for Pauline Egge, founder of design and travel website Petite Passport, travel is a year-round fixture. If you love interior design and aren't familiar with Egge's site, it's time to get acquainted. "I just love hot spots. Not the ones you will find in every guidebook, but the special ones," she says. "Shame on me, but I don't go to a restaurant because the food is superb (well, that's a nice extra) but because of the interiors. I like to sit on a Hay J77 chair or eat under a PSLab light bulb."
Egg spends the majority of the year jetting around the world unearthing cool restaurants and hotels with exceptional design. Yes, as far as dream jobs go, hers is certainly up there. "I've counted the different hotels I've stayed in this year, and I came up with 32. We're now in week 32, so a new hotel every week," she tells MyDomaine. Given her travel and design knowledge, we were curious to know what she recommends to friends. Keep scrolling to see what she had to say.
For a Heady Brew
Where: Clerkenwell Grind, London
Must Order: "The most popular dish is the avo smash, which I also would recommend. And of course, the coffee, as Grind started as a coffee café in Hoxton."
Design Detail: "I love it because I'm such a fan of Australian design, and Clerkenwell Grind is designed by Biasol, a Melbourne-based company. So we don't have to fly all the way to Australia to see its work."
For Unparalleled Pasta (Outside of Italy)
Where: Cecconi's, Barcelona
Must Order: "I love the black truffle agnolotti and the vitello tonnato. This is definitely my favorite restaurant in Barcelona."
Design Detail: "The restaurant of Soho House Barcelona has a lovely interior with beautiful velvet Bordeaux-red couches."
For Five-Star Portuguese Cuisine
Where: Bairro do Avillez, Lisbon
Must Order: "Chef Jose Avillez is the most famous chef of Portugal and has several Michelin stars. The idea is to share the dishes with your friends—order the Chá Açores No Chiado, a Gorreana black tea with cinnamon and orange, the tuna steak sandwich, and, of course, the pastéis de nata with coffee ice cream. It's so good that you'll want to order more than one."
Design Detail: "[This] restaurant is designed like a typical Lisbon neighborhood," says Egge. Vines drip from the balustrades, and bursts of tangerine contrast with piercing blue serveware.
For Pizza Aficionados
Where: Radio Alice, London
Must Order: "Pizza lovers have to go to Radio Alice in Hoxton and try the Prosciutto di Parma," says Egge.
Design Detail: This is a "new-school pizzeria in an old-school building in Hoxton," according to Radio Alice. Orb pendant lights illuminate the exposed brick walls and herringbone wood floors.
For the Best Tapas, Hands Down
Courtesy of Petite Passport
Where: Celso y Manolo, Madrid
Must Order: "If you want to have the best tapas, go here, and ask the waiter to surprise you with its best-selling dishes. You won't regret it," says Egge. "I ate the best tomato of my life here in the dish called Chuletón de Tomate de Huesca con Six Cosas Ricas."
Design Detail: "The [restaurant has] kept the beautiful authentic bar from the '50s and the tiles on the floor, but it completely changed the rest of the interior." Mismatched barstools and woven bullheads adorned on the walls are both features.
For World-Famous Meatballs
Where: Jansz at the Pulitzer, Amsterdam
Must Order: "Try the famous meatballs of New York chef Cassidy Hallman who worked at Momofuku before he moved to Amsterdam to work at Jansz at the Pulitzer. The restaurant is located in the nine-streets, and the view of the canals is unique."
Design Detail: "The entrance is already impressive because it once was a former pharmacy, and the restaurant kept the details intact."
Tell us: What's your favorite restaurant in the world?