For the stylish and eco-conscious San Franciscan, there is one place to shop for fashionable everyday pieces, Amour Vert. The Hayes Valley boutique and womenswear line was founded by Linda Balti in 2009. The pretty French woman was working as an engineer and noticed that there was a serious lack of sustainable ethical fashion options. So, she set out to create a collection of clothing that was made from specially-engineered textiles, blended fabrics, and low-impact dyes. Amour Vert, which translates to green love in French, is the resulting brand that has caught the eye of everyone from Gwyneth Paltrow to Olivia Palermo. Balti, who lives in the Dogpatch with her husband, Christoph Frehsee, the CEO of her company, has made it a point to support local and like-minded brands, especially those involved in the SFMADE collective. When she’s not busy planting trees (for every purchase of an Amour Vert T-shirt, the company plants a tree in North America), here is where you’ll find the chic Parisian hanging out in San Francisco.
Where were you born: Paris, France
How long in San Francisco: Seven years
Occupation: Founder and Creative Director of Amour Vert
Favorite Restaurant: Atelier Crenn for an amazing culinary experience.
Best Sushi: Akiko’s on Bush St. It’s my favorite omakase.
Best Italian: Marcella’s on Tennessee St. They make KILLER lasagna. I could eat it every day.
Best dessert: I do not have a sweet tooth.
Best place for a romantic date: A hike in the Redwood National Park to breathe fresh air and discuss life plans.
Best Sunday brunch: Chez Maman. I go there whenever I am homesick. It’s my French gateway in the city. Plus, their crepes are to die for.
Best place for a power business meeting: The Amour Vert office is next door’s to Philz coffee’s HQ and it’s literally an extension of our office.
If you have out of town guests, which hotel would you recommend? People are staying at our house. I am never sending anyone to the hotel that’s why I skipped this question.
Favorite shopping venue/boutique: I love shopping in Hayes Valley because this neighborhood has retained a sense of community and a nonexclusive feel. It’s amazing that there are no chain stores on that street.
Best Spa: The Tata Harper’s spa at Credo Beauty on Fillmore.
Favorite Charity Event: Global Green Charity Gala
Favorite Cultural Event: The San Francisco Ballet season.
Favorite Cultural Institution: I love the new SFMOMA.
Best Steakhouse: Boboquivari’s on Lombard St.
Best Pizza: Piccino on Minnesota St. in the Dogpatch.
Best Lunch: Monsieur Benjamin
Best Gym/Athletic Facility: I hate going to the gym, but I love long hikes and running outside.
Best Massage: The Herbal stone massage at Cavallo Point’s eco-spa.
Best Limousine/Driving Service: Uber
Best Museum/Exhibit: I love the Academy of Sciences. It’s my son’s favorite place. The aquarium is mesmerizing.
Describe your city in three words: Open-minded, no limits, and inspiring.
Favorite historic/legendary place to see or explore: A cable car ride from Union Square to Fisherman’s wharf.
All-around favorite spot in San Francisco: the view of the Golden Gate Bridge never gets old. It is what the Eiffel Tower is to Paris.
Best Aspect of San Francisco: Coming from Paris where people are not always the most welcoming, I love that San Francisco is cosmopolite and friendly.