Lynne Kortenhaus Shares Her Obsessions

Public relations powerhouse talks about her daily inspirations.

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Kortenhaus in her Charlestown home. / Photograph by Joyelle West, hair and makeup by Paula Voisembert/Team

Rhode Island School of Design graduate Lynne Kortenhaus honed her painting and printmaking skills for years before opening her public relations firm, Kortenhaus Communications, on Newbury Street in 1984. Her very first client? Boston’s Ritz-Carlton. Since then, she’s helped high-end companies like Hermès and Chanel, along with institutional clients, such as MassArt, enhance their presence in Boston. Kortenhaus says her fine arts background comes in handy every day: “Instead of using a canvas to paint, I use words and events to create the right stories for my clients.” Here, the PR maven shares her most covetable essentials.

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Knoll “Toothpick Cactus” Coffee Table

I bought this to go with a set of four original Marcel Breuer Wassily chairs in ivory leather. Its soft gray wood, large round top, and multiple crisscross legs are contemporary, yet classic, design elements. It complements both modern and traditional furnishings.

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Chanel Ankle Boots

These little quilted black booties are so comfy and can be dressed up or down. I just can’t do heels anymore when I am working an event.

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NARS Sheer Lipstick

I love Nars sheer lipstick in “Dolce Vita”—the soft and natural pink lipstick is moisturizing and great for everyday work or play.

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Hermès “L’ Arbre du Vent” Scarf

Jean-Louis Dumas, of Hermès, once told me that all you need is a touch of Hermès to be elegant. I especially adore the brand’s large silk and cashmere scarves that can be worn as a shawl or a fabulous extra layer thrown over a tee on the weekend with jeans.

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Frédéric Malle Bigarade Concentree

The deep citrus essence with hints of spice reminds me of blood oranges and cypress aromas from Tuscany.

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Yon-ka “Huile Corps” Body Oil

This French line of plant-based skincare products makes a body oil that is so light, it sinks into your skin, leaving it smooth and silky.


What I’m Eating

Right now I’m roasting a lot of vegetables: Brussels sprouts, cauliflower, broccoli, and butternut squash. I sprinkle the vegetables with olive oil, salt, and pepper and cook them until they’re a slight golden brown—delicious! In the summer, I’ll have arugula tossed with olive oil, a little lemon juice, and shaved Parmesan on top.

What I’m Watching

The Good Wife. What can I say? I identify with strong, flawed women. Jennifer Lopez is actually a good actress in Shades of Blue, and I love to hear and see good singers come into their own on American Idol and The Voice.

What I’m Listening To

I love music that tells stories with great lyrics and a soulful sound. Justin Timberlake’s The 20/20 Experience is my go-to workout album.

Where I’m Traveling

Anywhere near the ocean that is warm and sunny! My hectic schedule only allows me quick escapes, but I love to go to my second home in Indian Rocks Beach, Florida.

courtesy of The real real (chanel); 1stdibs (table); NARS Cosmetics; hermès of paris; hl group (frédéric malle bigarade concentree); yon-ka paris