Sur Restaurant & Lounge has got to be one of the hottest venues in West Hollywood. I had the chance to work on a few Fashion Week shows with the extremely stylish & beautiful Nathalie Zapata – this fabulous lady is the co-owner of SUR with her husband Guillermo & Lisa and Ken Vanderpump of BRAVO’s “The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills”.
Upon meeting Nathalie, I knew that I had to find out where all of her style inspiration comes from because she is the epitome of class. I hope you enjoy the interview as much as I enjoyed assembling it – you can see more of her work in a new BRAVO series coming soon about the staff at SUR.
WBM: How did your background lead you to where you are today?
NATHALIE: I worked as a communication director for different firms in Paris before to move to LA. I was a very successful business woman with a not so successful love life! After a trip to California, I felt hard for who was going to be the love of my life: Guillermo
WBM: Tell me a bit about SUR restaurant & Lounge?
NATHALIE: Guillermo owned Sur restaurant for 15 years. When we met, Sur was a tiny restaurant in a fabulous location. With our work together and the partnership with our friends Ken and Lisa Todd, we made it a fabulous restaurant in a fabulous location.
Lisa took Sur to another level few years ago when she became a Real housewife of Beverly Hills. When the premises next door from Sur became vacant, we all jump on the opportunity to extend our venue and built the sexiest Lounge of West Hollywood.
WBM: What led you to your interest in the industry?
NATHALIE: Working in the hospitality business is very hard and demanding. We are founding great pleasure in our work because our approach is different. We are operating Sur simply as if we were receiving our friends for dinner at home. It’s all about the entire atmosphere: from the fresh flowers
and rose petals on the table, to the votive and candles to add intimacy, to the music to enhance the dinner experience.
Doesn’t matter if you reserve for a dinner of 4, a birthday party of 20, a bridal shower of 50, or a corporate event of 300, it must be the best memorable experience ever. It’s very rewarding to give the best.
WBM: What is a key lesson you’ve learned along the way?
NATHALIE: I really think kind and generous people goes further than others. It’s like there is a magical give back. Some people call it karma…
WBM: Think of these four characteristics of entrepreneurs: heart, smart, buts, luck. Which one were you?
NATHALIE: I am definitely an entrepreneur at heart. But you need it all: a bit of guts, a pinch of luck, and an ounce of brightness.
What has been your highest moment in fashion and your lowest?
NATHALIE: For my wedding, I designed a very simple and classy gown, a gown to be remembered forever.
I am quite eclectic on my daily fashion. It’s probably due to the fact that my roots are Parisians, I love some kind of Rock attitude as well, and living in California made me want to be more casual. It’s fun to play a different character every day!
No lowest moment, sorry, baby, I stand for everything I wore, even the edgiest!
WBM: Where do you see yourself in five years?
NATHALIE: I see my business being more successful than ever! We have, thanks to my business partner Lisa, a TV show starting on January 7 th on Bravo about the life of our waiters and bartenders, leaving the crazy life of Hollywood. This show is going to put us on the radar more than ever…
I see myself walking on some sexy beach with my two beautiful daughters and my handsome husband to take few days of rest.
WBM: Who currently is your style icon?
NATHALIE: Lou Doillon is my style icon. She is the new Parisian, edgy, classy and effortless…
Fashion item you can’t live without?
NATHALIE: I am a shoe addict. I love them all..sexy pumps, extravagant platforms, masculine loafers, ballet flat, flashy sandals, you name it!
A good manicure is always the perfect complement to any outfit.
And I won’t leave my house without black heavy mascara on.