Additional articles BY COURTNEY COCHRAN

Desperately Seeking Serenity

Sonoma's Être Beauté Hits All the Right Notes

The transition from urban oasis to wine country outpost can be a bit bumpy for those accustomed to ready access to their favorite, hard-to-find beauty products. Whether your must-have item is a T. LeClerc lipstick or a Kiehl's lip balm (with SPF 4, thank you very much), until recently your chances of tracking it down in wine country were slim at best.

But thanks to new addition Être Beauté in downtown Sonoma, urbanites suffering from Kiehl's withdrawal can now breathe a collective sigh of relief. The exquisite jewel box-like shop, which opened recently on the town's historic plaza just steps from its sister home wares outpost, Être Sonoma, brings high-end cosmetics and body products usually only found in upscale urban stores to throngs of grateful locals and visitors alike.

A bar like no other
Proprietor Christine Curry has referred to her delightful shop as the Être "beauty bar," and the shop's long, narrow space is indeed evocative of a bar. But with luxe details like Carrara marble counters, mirrored walls, and twinkling chandeliers, Être Beauté doesn't look like any bar I've seen serving the likes of Guinness and Stella on draft. Instead, watch for patrons clamoring for Trilogy Botanical Body Wash and Diptyque candles.

Curry launched the Être shops after moving to Sonoma from suburban Woodside several years ago. The married mother of one had already helmed two successful careers in San Francisco, the first as a cosmetics executive and the second as an interior decorator. Upon arriving in Sonoma, she lit upon the idea of launching a high-end home store where she could combine both her passions under one roof.

A recently remodeled nineteenth century abode just off the plaza soon became home to Être Sonoma, where Curry was surprised to see her small but well-edited selection of beauty products flying off of shelves. It wasn't long before she struck upon the idea of starting a second store entirely dedicated to these products, with an on-premise salon where customers could take their beauty regimes to still greater heights.

And just like that, Être Beauté was born.

Brow tint before tasting, anyone?
Salon services offered at Être include waxing, brow and lash tinting, makeup application, and facials. The spot's popular In Fiore Facial - which includes a deep cleanse, enzyme exfoliation, and massage for a reasonable $65 - is proof that urban luxury doesn't add up to urban prices at Être (compare with $100 or more for most big-city facials). Other services run from $10 to $60, and makeup application pricing is available upon request.

With a name that literally means "to be" in French, it seems destined that Être will become one of wine country's most sought-after destinations. Even for travelers without a pressing need for the likes of the latest Delrae perfume, Être is worth a visit just to get a peek at its delicious interior. Indeed, there's no other place like it in wine country.
Être Beauté, 408 First Street East, Sonoma, CA Tel (707) 939-7010 Walk-ins welcome for salon services.

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