Walking into the newly renovated American Beech reception space is like entering a tropical paradise. The part boutique, part lounge acts both as an area to welcome and check in guests staying at the American Beech hotel in Greenport, but also as a beautifully curated shop, selling clothing, house goods and gifts.
Called the Alex Vinash Boutique, the space features the designs of Argentinian-born, Greenport-based designer Vinash, who is the mastermind behind the room’s renovation and curated products.
“It’s cool because it’s really my space,” Vinash told me on a recent visit to tour the new space. “It is really what I wanted to express.”
The first thing that catches the eye is the small waterfall right in the middle of the room, made of concrete and surrounded by greenery. The sound of the steady stream transports you away from cold winter outside. Then the eyes travel to the bold wall paper to the right — a large print of tropical leaves and monkeys frame the colorful and sparkly clothes hanging on the racks, both Vinash’s original designs and smaller designers he has brought in.
The construction of the room offers plenty more eye candy — high ceilings with wooden beams and bamboo detail, large archways framing the lounge, funky chandeliers and a hardwood floor accented by blue floral tile.
“Because everything is new, I wanted to keep a little bit of that history and [the original floor] had a really cool aesthetic,” Vinash said. He also kept the original beams but modernized them with the paint and bamboo. The arches were a new addition to give the room a more tropical feel.
“It’s something that is more related to my culture,” he said. “I thought it would bring something more exotic.” Near the arches is a lounge with plush, bright orange chairs, a massive coffee table, a white leather couch and straw light pendants. Guests of the hotel and bar are invited to use this space to enjoy a drink or two, as it connects back to the Black Llama bar.
The space is intended to offer a kind of instant getaway, especially for hotel guests. “We wanted to create a happy place and a happy spot for people to be able to come in and enjoy,” Vinash said. “I love the open space, the arches, the tropical plants, the waterfall. We transport you anywhere besides your home.”
Towards the front of the store are massive shelves and tables showcasing candles, coffee table books, colorful busts, small dog sculptures, throws and more home decor curated by Vinash. “I like the unexpected,” he said, offering everything from a neon light to travel books and coffee table books.
The full renovation started about a year ago, and like many projects, was put on hold a bit due to the COVID-19 pandemic. But since opening last month, Vinash is excited to have a retail store to give locals and tourists a place to shop for his designs.
“It makes me really happy,” he said, “to see people in Greenport that I know walking around with my clothes on.”
The Alex Vinash Boutique is located at 300 Main Street in the Stirling Square complex and is open Monday through Thursday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Friday through Sunday 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.