Lifestyle in Gigiri

The Lifestyle House from the garden.
 
 

Photo credit: John Fox | Nation Media Group

What you need to know:

  • Nadine is the personal assistant of the owner of the new place called Lifestyle in Gigiri.
  •  But I soon realised that whatever was on display at Lifestyle was more high-end in a quality sense of the term, more arts than crafts.

 ‘It’s a place for high-end shopping,’ Nadine said. ‘Works of art, clothes, wine and food.’

‘And are the prices high-end, too?’ I asked.

‘Not really,’ Nadine countered. ‘Look around and you will see.’

Nadine is the personal assistant of the owner of the new place called Lifestyle in Gigiri. The owner is Lisa Christoffersen, who is, as her website has it, ‘an interior designer, an expert in African tribal arts, an organiser and hostess of exclusive bush trips, and the author of the very successful book: Bushfriendly Tips for Girls (Boys Too!)’.

So I did what Nadine advised – I had a look around. Lisa’s Lifestyle place is a large and rambling house, tucked away down a lane marked with a UNOPS signboard that is immediately before the Warwick Centre on the United Nations Avenue.

My first impression was that Lifestyle is rather like Utamaduni down Langata South Road – a collection of shops within a big house that are selling arts and crafts and safari clothes, plus, when I was last there, a small restaurant in the garden.

Wine and food

 But I soon realised that whatever was on display at Lifestyle was more high-end in a quality sense of the term, more arts than crafts. And the prices were not so high, as Nadine had said.

Last Saturday I had actually gone for the wine and food. That’s what I had been told about – Wine Life, which has pride of place on the ground floor of the house and spread out across the garden.

Nadine introduced me to Bo Frederiksen, who runs it. He produced an impressively long wine list with prices — very reasonable prices, ranging from Sh1,500 to Sh3,000.

The sun was out, so we chose to sit in the garden with a chilled bottle of Prosecco. Though the wine list was long, the menu was short: Danish hotdogs, Vegetarian lasagne, chicken wings, cheese platter, weinerschnitzel with potato salad. I went for the cheese platter – a very good one, with a variety of cheeses from Browns and Rose Delight, fresh figs and sweet nutty crackers. The menu, so Bo said, is changed each week.

He told me about the wine-tasting that had been held a few evenings previously. It was in the open and warmed by bonfires. It had attracted 150 people.

These tastings, expertly led by Kevin Wachira, are now held every Thursday evening from 4 pm to 9 pm. And you can book private tastings with Kevin. A table was being laid out for one of those when I was there.

African bush

Lisa was away in the Mara. I was intrigued by her Lifestyle, so I went to talk with her when she was back on Tuesday. She is all the things the website says she is. It is certainly true that her passions are the African bush and traditional African arts.

For a time she had a gallery in her home. But the place in Gigiri, opened in August with her business partner Mary, has given her much more space and many more opportunities.

She has an office there for organising the bespoke adventure safaris. She has indulged her own tastes by attracting people to sell their quality products at Lifestyle – whether paintings, photographs, safari clothes, jewellery, books or gourmet foods. She has ideas for holding more events there. And she has just written a beautifully illustrated children’s book called A Monkey’s Wedding.

Lisa’s Lifestyle is a work in progress. An Ethiopian coffee place will be opening soon. Before long, there could be a German beer garden and a small Italian restaurant. She has created a kind of bush place in Gigiri – a tasteful and intriguing bush place.

If you want to know more, get information about the safari trips, find out about events at Lifestyle, or buy Lisa's  children‘s book, then contact her on lisachristoffersen47@gmail.com.

 johnfox@idc.co.ke