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Emma Sawko

A conversation with the founder of Comptoir 102 and Wild & The Moon.

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Tell us a little a bit about yourself…
Parisienne, happy mother of three, loving life, sharing my time between Dubai and Paris. Launched myself into the Health + Wellness world in 2012 by founding Comptoir 102 – a concept-store and healthy restaurant in Dubai. And, over the last years I’ve been busy founding and growing Wild & the Moon – a chain of plant-based healthy food restaurants/juice bars based in Paris and Dubai.
Do you have a nickname ?
Emma, it’s what everyone calls me. It sticks, its easy, especially for the non-French.
Where do you call home ?
I was born in NYC, raised in the Swiss mountains, and lived in Paris, NYC and Dubai. Right now I share my time between Paris and Dubai. I feel Parisian but I miss NYC when I’m in Dubai, dream of walking on my Dubai beach when I am in Paris, and always wish I could be breathing the pure fresh Swiss mountain air whenever I am away from it! All of these places hold something special for me and all resonate with me for different reasons – it makes life complicated but much more interesting.
What defines home for you ?
Home is my kitchen and the space around it. It is the centre of my family life. Where I kiss my children in the morning, prepare an after-workout smoothie, catch up with the family, or cook simple or elaborate dinners for friends and family. And, of course it contains my favourite machine: Vitamix! It allows me to make a pink/yellow/green/blue smoothie faster than my shadow.
Emma Sawko Ikigai Interviews

Photo credits: insideoutparis.com

“My aha-moment really happened during my years in NYC when I fully recognised the power of a healthy lifestyle.”

Who or what do you turn to when you have had a bad day ?
I try not to unload my bad mood onto others. After work, I need a little time on my own to let go of negative thoughts or tension. In Dubai I walk barefoot on the beach at sunset and, wherever I am, a good music playlist and taking time to meditate and breathe does the trick…
Tell us about your Health + Wellness journey...
I didn’t start it, my mother did it for me! She was the health freak before it was a thing. I grew up on a healthy diet, with plenty of organic fresh food. She paved the way for me to allow me to be where I am today and I am immensely grateful for that. My aha-moment really happened during my years in NYC when I fully recognised the power of a healthy lifestyle.
What are your favorite Health + Wellness essentials ?
Beauty – Noto Botanics face oil and cold-pressed organic coconut oil, a couple of sprays of Amly Botanicals – Beauty Sleep facial mist at bed time, and Kure Bazaar bio nail polish.
Nutrition – Plant-based nutrition, usually in my own at home or at Wild and the Moon.
Fashion – Ernest Leoty athleisure wear.
Where is your favourite Health + Wellness destination ?
In Dubai, boxing classes with my trainer and friend Hassan. In Paris, yoga with Aria Crescendo at my favourite Club, Le Tigre Yoga. And, when I am travelling, any running trails or just a yoga mat on the beach will do.
What's been your best Health + Wellness experience ?
I recently tried the Hotel Merano in Italy, from Henri Chenot, and I loved it. This summer, I will be in Greece with Aria at a secret yoga retreat, but unfortunately I have to admit I do not have a lot of time right now for myself. However, my businesses Comptoir 102 and Wild and the Moon of course keep me healthy all year round.
What is your Health + Wellness routine ?
Exercise – Every morning: 1 hour of Yoga or Muay Thai.
Nutrition – After workout spirulina-almond smoothie.
Spirituality – Meditation.
Emma Sawko Ikigai Interviews-1

Photo credits: ringthebelle.com

“Going inwards and finding my centre.”

What’s your go to health food ?
Avocado.
What’s your devilish indulgence ?
A 3am food truck.
What’s your favourite yoga position ?
Botoxasana… it brings fresh oxygenated blood to the head and face.
What makes you laugh ?
Vodka.
What do you fear ?
The destruction of our planet and the level of pollution that we are creating that will not allow our children to live a long and happy lives.
How do you find serenity ?
Going inwards and finding my centre.
Emma Sawko Ikigai Interviews 2

Photo credits: insideoutparis.com

“Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss, you’ll land among the stars.”

What is it about IKIGAI Global that appeals to you ?
Building alternative, conscious, committed communities is the new black and the only way to build a sustainable future.
What is the one book that has helped you discover your path and yourself ?
The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz.
What has been the hardest thing to accept ?
The passing of loved ones.
How, what and why have you changed over the last 10 years ?
I left the corporate world and launched my own business. Opening a store, a café, a restaurant, then two, then ten… You learn by trial and error, by stumbles and falls,  and I did just that. Yet, the most important thing I learned is to trust myself rather than relying on other peoples’ opinions on how I should do things. And, to never let go of what you want – persistence pays off.
What do you do to make the world a better / more sustainable place ?
At Wild & the Moon we are aiming for 0% waste; our containers are recyclable, we use zero plastic, we do not overproduce, our food is plant-based, local and organic, and our recipes are pure and plain, with no added nasties.
Do you have a good luck charm ?
No, but I have a guardian angel somewhere out there in the stars looking after me.
Who inspires you ?
The planet. She made me do it.
What is your mantra ?
Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss, you’ll land among the stars.
And finally, what is your ikigai ?
Offering an alternative to fast food with a chain of healthy food restaurants that respect the environment. What resonates with me is “I am just doing my bit”, as illustrated by the Native American tale of the hummingbird.
Emma Sawko Ikigai Interviews 4
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