Valentina Ignatova of By Far’s Favorite Places in Riyadh | Savoir Flair
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Valentina Ignatova of By Far’s Favorite Places in Riyadh
article VALENTINA IGNATOVA
by Savoir Flair 5-minute read July 12, 2023

After her recent conversion to Islam, the Co-Founder of By Far, Valentina Ignatova, has found herself spending more and more time in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. These are her favorite spots around her newly adopted city.

No matter how many travel guides we read, there’s nothing quite like word of mouth to find out where to go in a new city. Hearing that someone you know — or follow on social media — has been to (and swears by) a certain restaurant, salon, cafe, or attraction immediately earns the space a spot on your bucket list. So we’re doing the work for you. Our new series, Little Black Book, takes us through our favorite celebrities, influencers, and cool girls and guys’ favorite spots in their hometowns, for us to get to know them and their favorite cities better.

Valentina Ignatova is the Co-Founder and Chief Marketing Officer of By Far, a Bulgarian brand that revived the 90s shoulder bag trends and has since become a favorite of the fashion set. As Co-Founder of a cult accessories brand, Valentina’s life is filled with global travel, but there is one place in particular that holds her heart: Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. Having recently converted to Islam, Valentina has found herself spending more and more time in Riyadh, a city whose vibrant art, food, and cultural scenes instantly attracted the creative entrepreneur.

Of her conversion to Islam, Valentina shares with Savoir Flair, “Everyone’s path to spirituality and peace is very individual. For me converting to Islam came very naturally as I’ve been surrounded by its beauty through my close friends and their families for most of my adulthood. Islam feels like home to me. It’s my safe space, it’s where I find peace, it taught me to accept every moment of my journey as a gift from God and trust it’s right purpose for all there is to come.”

img VALENTINA IGNATOVA

Fashion & Beauty

My Favorite Local Designer Is...

Abadia is one of my favorite local designers. I find myself reaching for their abayas when I am in Saudi. I also love their dresses as a staple for any summer vacation.

My Favorite Independent Boutique Is...

Eastway Market always has a beautifully curated roster of designers in its store.

My Favorite Spa Is… I Always Get…

Vernis Spa. I am very particular about my nails, and Vernis offers exceptional nail services. I love the attention to care and detail in their manicures.

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Food

My Favorite Place For Weekend Brunch Is…

Lunchroom. Brunch is one of my favorite meals when I get the time to fit it into my schedule. Lunchroom has such a delicious menu.

My Favorite Place to Get Coffee Is...

Moon Shell. I love catching up with my friends over coffee at Moon Shell. They have the best matcha!

My Favorite Night-Out Spot Is…

My friends recently took me to CLAP! I love that it's on a rooftop and at night you can see the entire city. The music is great and I enjoyed the vibe.

My Favorite Restaurant Is...

LPM. It has the best and I mean the best food I have ever had in my life! No other location compares to LPM Riyadh.

My Favorite Local Food Spot Is...

The best local food I’ve had in Riyadh was at Najd Village. I really felt I was having a home-cooked meal at a friend’s house.

My Favorite Dessert Spot Is...

My favorite dessert spot is at the Ritz Hotel. I love their traditional dates and coffee.

img BANYAN TREE ALULA

Fun

My Favorite Art Gallery Is...

Naila Art Gallery is a beautifully curated art space offering art rooted in Saudi’s rich culture.

My Favorite Coworking Space Is...

Sima Space is an excellent place to connect with people from the region. It’s always interesting to work out of the office in a co-working space.

My Favorite Place to Take My Kids/Pets Is...

The Square [a sub-zone of The BLVD RUH]  is a lovely place for families and kids. It has everything: restaurants, cafes, shopping, and open space for kids with lots of activities to do.

My Favorite Gym/Workout Spot is...

Stance Studio is a light and airy gym that makes working out enjoyable.

My Favorite Staycation Spot Is...

AlUla is the most magical place I have ever visited. It is truly an alternate universe. It’s one of the best places to travel to when in Saudi to decompress, be still, and immerse yourself in gratitude.

My Favorite Landmark Is…

Four Seasons Hotel is a beautiful architectural landmark.

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