Haute Secrets NYC: French Luxury Brand CEO Maz Zouhairi

Maz Zouhairi, president and CEO of Lalique North America
Maz Zouhairi, president and CEO of Lalique North America

Maz Zouhairi, the dynamic president and CEO of Lalique North America (lalique.com), is a major player in the global luxury sector, helping to enrich his heritage brand with new product lines, smart Hollywood partnerships, and top charity involvements. Lalique, a favorite of European and American elites for over 100 years, is renowned for its museum-ready glass art, decorative objects, and jewelry. The company recently collaborated with Elton John on a crystal sculpture collection to raise money for the performer’s EJAF charity (ejaf.org).

Zouhairi with Elton John
Zouhairi with Elton John

Here are Maz’s favorite New York spots.

Where were you born? Beirut

How long in New York? Since 2001

How long as president and CEO of Lalique? Almost 10 years

Favorite neighborhood (and why): Chelsea. It’s so amazing to witness all the new development and creativity along the High Line coming from the world’s leading designers. I’m especially excited to see 520 W 28th Street come to life, as it was designed by our partner Zaha Hadid. We worked with her and her team on a stunning collection of vases inspired by the texture and curvature of her buildings.

Best Restaurant: Indochine. Still so cool after all these years.

Best French: I love Lafayette. Not only does it capture the unique style and energy of Paris, but it is also a showcase for the brilliant work of Roman + Williams, whom we are collaborating with on a new lighting collection.

Best Italian: Marea. Such an amazing menu and always fun to dine by Central Park.

Best dessert: Nothing beats the gelato from Sant Ambroeus.

Best bar: The King Cole Bar at the St. Regis Hotel is classic New York.

Best Sunday brunch: It’s tough to beat brunch in the garden at Montmartre when the weather is nice.

Best place for a power business meeting: The restaurant Daniel is always perfect for important meetings. The service is impeccable and I love Chef Daniel’s beautiful display of Lalique vases and decorative items in the main dining room. 

Favorite hotel for out-of-town guests: The Mercer

Favorite place for suits: Zegna

Best Steakhouse: BLT Prime

Best Pizza: Company

Best Lunch: Casa Lever

Best gym/athletic facility:  Equinox

Favorite charity: Tanenbaum is very dear to me. It is a secular, non-sectarian, non-profit organization that promotes mutual respect with practical programs that bridge religious differences and combat prejudice in schools, workplaces, health care settings and areas of armed conflict. And with all the challenges our world is facing today, we desperately need their work to continue to hope for a peaceful world that respect differences. I am proud to be serving once again as a co-chair to Tanenbaum’s Annual Award Gala in New York on Monday, May 23, 2016. 

Night-on-the-town favorites: I always like the lobby of the Jane Hotel after dinner Downtown. It is a relaxed environment with great music.

Best museum/exhibit: The new Whitney Museum is spectacular. The combination of incredible art, a beautiful building, great food and beautiful views makes for an unforgettable experience. When I am Uptown I love visiting the Neue Gallerie. It’s such an intimate space with an unparalleled collection.

Favorite historic/legendary place to see or explore: Central Park is an enduring gift to the city. It is a peaceful oasis that is always evolving and ever changing with the seasons.

Describe New York in three words: Stimulating, dynamic, and timeless

Best aspect of New York:  The city brings together some of the world’s most creative and brilliant minds to create an environment that is constantly changing without ever losing its character.

Secret to your success? Passion, humility, and kindness. Own everything that you do and do it from the bottom of your heart, whether it is for you or for others.