Buly’s treasures—ornate aluminum tubes of hand cream with metal caps, candles in marble vessels, and Japanese wood combs—have been go-to souvenirs for editors and stylists since the first shop opened four years ago. (Fans in the U.S. can now find Buly at Bergdorf Goodman.)
Sophie de Taillac-Suzuki, the eldest sister, comes in from Tokyo, where she has lived since 1990. She first moved there to work in PR for Comme des Garçons, but after marrying and having a child, she took time off to raise her son and help Marie-Hélène manage her Tokyo shop. In 2016, Sophie began working with the Japan chapter of En Marche, a small group of French expats and academics who wanted to help elect Emmanuel Macron president of France.
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“The idea was to transfer ideas to the campaign about things we thought could be done better, based on the Japanese system and living abroad,” Sophie says. “I had the meeting at my apartment. I prepared boeuf bourguignon.” The four sisters also have a younger brother, Pierre de Taillac, who is a book publisher in Deauville.
What the house lacks in cell service it makes up for in charm. “Aside from a power line spoiling our view, you can’t tell if you’re in 1900 or 2010,” Marie-Hélène says. The château, which has a guard tower from the 15th century at its center but was mostly constructed in the 16th and 17th centuries, was purchased by the siblings’ grandfather, who was descended from Isaac de Porthau, the basis for the character Porthos in Alexandre Dumas’s The Three Musketeers.