Miami-born Lina Gutiérrez of Carmelinas shoes has travelled the world from Miami to Spain, via Paris. Currently based in the vibrant city of Madrid, the footwear enthusiast has infused each city’s culture into the Carmelinas shoe brand. We discover Lina’s highlights of her current hometown.
Where were you born?
I was born in Miami and grew up on an island. It was a wonderful childhood and place to grow up. The island is very safe and used to be a small community.
Where do you live?
I live in Madrid and love the city. It is constantly moving and is lively, yet easy going.
If money were no object, where would you live and why?
I can’t imagine living in only one place, I love travelling and moving around to different places. That is what I love about my job. It permits me to travel back and forth between Madrid and Alicante where the Carmelinas factory is, so I get the best of both worlds.
Which are your three favourite stores in Madrid?
EKS has a beautiful selection of my favourite brands such as Iro, Carven and Phillip Lim. Mimoki is an adorable store, with a beautiful courtyard, with things for your home, and it also has an excellent collection of emerging designers. Mimoki headpieces and tocados are a must-have for summer weddings.
Finally El Corte Inglés in La Castellana: as much as I love small, quaint boutiques, this is a convenient one-stop department store where I can get all of my shopping done. It stocks everything from skincare and candles by Diptyque to international fashion brands such as Sandro, Kooples and Maje.
And your favourite restaurants in Madrid?
Shikku – I can’t live without sushi and this is by far one of my favourites. The Puerto Lagasca restaurant is a classic place to go with my friends and relax with a few drinks. Ana la Santa is a new restaurant that is close to where I live. They serve the most delicious traditional tapas and the ambience is excellent.
Nájera is the most delicious tasca, full of locals, and the food is delicious. Chifa is a delicious restaurant for a fusion of Latin American and South-East Asian cuisine. It has a dinner vibe that makes me feel at home.
Which is your favourite local café or bar?
My local café is a small churrería. I love hanging out there very early in the morning when it gets full with locals from the neighbourhood, especially the older generations. It is lovely seeing how people continue with traditions. The churros are made fresh to order and are delicious accompanied by chocolate.
Where do you take out-of-town friends when they visit?
I take them to all of the local places where I normally hang out. I loathe feeling like a tourist, so they just join me on my normal routine. We go for a run in the Retiro in the early morning, then they head to the museums which are all in the same neighbourhood. Later we go for dinner in Barrio de las Letras where I live.
For more information on Carmelinas shoes visit: www.carmelinashoes.com