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Studio 6, 1-7 Unwins Bridge Rd
St Peters NSW 2044

+61 414 808 205

LUMIRA is a luxury scented candle and fragrance house founded by Almira Armstrong in Sydney, Australia. LUMIRA products are your luxury lifestyle essentials. Copyright 2017 Atelier Lumira.


Lumira Stays | The Surfrider Hotel, Malibu, USA

Almira Armstrong

Since the mid-1950s, surfers from around the globe have made the pilgrimage to Malibu, California, in search of the elusive perfect wave. Arriving at the 30-kilometre stretch of coastline west of Downtown Los Angeles, they clustered mainly around Malibu Point; so much so that in 1961, the spot was renamed Surfrider Beach. Skip ahead more than half a century and Surfrider is still a surfing mecca, but now there’s another very compelling reason to make the pilgrimage – and it has nothing to do with the waves.

Directly opposite the legendary Malibu Point is The Surfrider Malibu, which reopened late last year after having had a significant renovation to what was once a classic 1950s beachside motel. It’s the brainchild of couple Matthew Goodwin, an architect and Malibu local, and Emma Crowther-Goodwin, The Surfrider’s creative director, as well their business partner Alessandro Zampedri. With 18 rooms and two expansive suites, it bills itself as a “new standard of relaxed luxury coastal living”.

Crowther-Goodwin, who was actually born and raised in Queensland, clearly knows a thing or two about relaxed but chic living. Under her creative direction, this translates into an easy, beach-shack style, complete with bleached teak flooring, linen-covered sofas and understated natural touches like handmade ceramics, potted plants beside the bed and jute mats covering the floor. Of course, this being California, the handmade is balanced by the high-tech, notably in the form of a charging station for electric cars.

The heritage of the local area is also celebrated in ways both small – like in-room snacks from California producers – and large – you can’t miss the custom surfboards made by local shapers. But there is perhaps no greater celebration than The Surfrider’s many vantage points of the ocean, as those magical waves can be seen from every room except one. For the very best view of the Malibu Pier, however, head up to the rooftop deck and drop into a lounger; with its own bar and firepit, there’s no better place to be when the sun goes down.

Written by Michelle Bateman


Four female sculptors we admire

Almira Armstrong

The sheer heft of a sculptor’s materials – stone, marble, steel – lend it a robustness and physicality that few other art mediums can rival. There’s a bulk to many sculptures that’s capable of filling a room with its presence. At the same time, the practice requires an utmost delicacy and poise – one slip of the chisel and a nose can take a very different form.

With International Women’s Day approaching, what better medium to celebrate the dance between strength and fragility?  The four artists below each take quite a different approach to sculpture but each leave an indelible mark on the world.

The up-and-comer: Holly Ryan

Having already found success creating fine jewellery, Australia’s Holly Ryan has turned her hand to pieces of a very different scale. Working with sandstone or hebel, as well as timber and steel, she creates contemporary busts with more than a passing nod to the fragmented style of Cubism. Whether it’s a pair of her silver earrings or a sandstone sculpture, there’s a consistency to Ryan’s organic forms, each revealing different characteristics when viewed from different perspectives. Her early 2018 exhibition at Sydney’s Jerico Contemporary gallery was a near-sellout, proving this talented artist is one to watch.

 Pictured: Ryan’s solo exhibition at Jerico Contemporary

Pictured: Ryan’s solo exhibition at Jerico Contemporary

The established name: Rachel Whiteread

One of the legendary group of Young British Artists (YBAs), Whiteread was the first woman to be awarded the prestigious Turner Prize in 1993 and her forte is making ordinary objects distinctly extraordinary. She does this by working with negative space, casting, for example, the space under the stairs, rather than the stairs themselves. Light switches, hot water bottles and, most notably, the inside of entire houses, become both familiar and strange when their insides are turned out and cast in industrial materials such as concrete, rubber and plaster. Through Whiteread’s eyes, it’s possible to gain a new understanding of the world around us.

 Pictured: ‘Maquette for Judenplatz Holocaust Memorial’, 1995

Pictured: ‘Maquette for Judenplatz Holocaust Memorial’, 1995

The political voice: Doris Salcedo

Born in Colombia, Salcedo was personally impacted by the country’s Civil War, and members of her family were among those who were “disappeared”. Her poignant sculptures speak of loss, trauma and memory, as well as the experience of people displaced from their homelands. At first glance, the works seem ordinary and familiar – a chair and table; a piece of clothing – but in Salcedo’s hands, these objects become a meditation on the people who once owned them, and who have since vanished. One of her most powerful works is the substantial ‘Shibboleth’, specially commissioned for the Turbine Hall in the Tate Gallery in London. The  167-metre long crack in the gallery’s floor is designed to represent the borders and racism experienced by immigrants, or, as Salcedo puts it, “It is the experience of a Third World person coming into the heart of Europe”. 

 Pictured: ‘Shibboleth’, 2007

Pictured: ‘Shibboleth’, 2007

The contrarian: Maggi Hambling

Like a chameleon, Hambling shifts effortlessly between styles and mediums, as comfortable creating abstract paintings as she is intricate works on paper, or powerful, weighty sculptures. She’s not afraid to be controversial, either – this much-loved British artist once turned down a request to paint Margaret Thatcher because, as she told The Telegraph newspaper, “As with any other painting, a portrait has to be a work of love, and that’s not what I felt for Mrs Thatcher.” Hambling’s public sculptures have sharply divided public opinion, with her giant seaside work ‘Scallop’ being called ugly and kitsch, as well as exceptionally handsome and evocative.

 Pictured: ‘Scallop’, 2003

Pictured: ‘Scallop’, 2003

Written by Michelle Bateman

Tonic of Gin Returns

Almira Armstrong


Due to popular demand, the exclusive LUMIRA x Distillery Botanica Gin Tonic of Gin fragrance has returned, ideal for those who like to enjoy an endless summer.

Of the collaboration, LUMIRA Founder & Creative Director says: “I was first introduced to Distillery Botanica about a year ago - I was so intrigued by how they created such a fragrant product. I wanted to understand their process in achieving such a delicious, heightened scent in their gin”.

Distillery Botanica Gin’s unique character is derived from its botanicals which are grown and handpicked in the distillery garden, and the use of “enfleurage”, a thousand-year-old perfuming technique used to extract the purest perfume from their hero botanical Murraya. The floral character of the gin is distinct and inspired by the Australian summer garden.

So inspired by both the process and the distinctive scent, Armstrong created Tonic of Gin, which features the scent of Murraya, Chamomile and Juniper, all botanicals which form the cast of Distillery Botanica’s Garden Grown Gin. These fragrant notes are captured beautifully in the candle allowing enthusiasts to experience gin in an alternative, sensory way – though of course, senses are heightened when you pair it with a refreshing glass of G & T on a warm summer’s evening.

Will Miles, Brand Director of Distillery Botanica says: “We loved the idea of collaborating with LUMIRA. We like exploring ways in which we can convey our gin’s unique character, and creating a candle that captures the aroma of Distillery Botanica gin sounded original and interesting”.

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