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New York State of Mind

I like reading Conde Nast Traveler while I'm on vacay, so I can think about my next vacay. haha.

I like reading Conde Nast Traveler while I’m on vacay, so I can think about my next vacay. haha.

Sometimes I can’t help myself.  I can be self indulgent and impulsive — both common traits of Geminis.  Though I am planning a holiday trip, I could not resist a Fall mini-break to New York with my sister.  This travel compulsion trumps any chocolate addiction.  I can often lure a few friends to tag along because they know I love to plan a) brunches/dinners b) shopping c) activities involving champagne spritzers/Riesling and in general I up the ante on my comedy game.  More fun? Yes please!

I dreamed of New York

I dreamed of New York

I was feeling nostalgic so the theme of our trip was throwback.  I tried to mix in a little of this and little of that, some places that we used to haunt and some new ones to keep it fresh.

Cafeteria (119 7th Ave.) – We were just babies when we used to come here. Do you remember China Club? Carrie loved it. Still open 24 hours, good for brunch mimosas, great for after the bar comfort food. Mac n’ Cheese is still on the menu.

Cafeteria in the heart of Chelsea is open 24 hours. So you can #nomnomnom anytime

Cafeteria in the heart of Chelsea is open 24 hours. So you can #nomnomnom anytime

Nobu NY (105 Hudson St.) – There’s a reason people come back for chef Nobu Matsuhisa’s new style Japanese cuisine. Spaces are warm, subdued and elegant. The Tribeca location is the original (famously backed by Robert de Niro) which opened in 2004.  With imaginative dishes and high quality sushi I’m like ‘whoa.’  This is saying a lot coming from a vegetarian who detests raw things.

Ladurée (398 West Broadway, Soho)  – A Parisian tea room with a glass case of patisserie and candy-coloured rainbow of macarons await.

Decadent delights: I shared the macarons this time. They come in the most beautiful little boites, non?

Decadent delights: I shared the macarons this time. They come in the most beautiful little boites, non?

Stanton Social (99 Stanton St.) – My friend S said, “Lower East Side is the new Meatpacking.” That makes me giggle.  There’s still a bit of grungey edge to LES but I like when the sketch intermingles with trendy spots.  Keeping it real.  Celebrity chef Chris Santos’s menu is a mashup of ethnic tapas from Kobe beef sliders to Nori Spice Tuna Wonton and Summer Squash Ravioli. Try Monday nights if you want a downtown crowd.

Stanton Social plays good hip hop while you are noshing on your gourmet eats.

Stanton Social plays good hip hop while you are noshing on your gourmet eats.

Wayback playback: Supermodels at Indochine.  FIN.

Wayback playback: Supermodels at Indochine. FIN.

 

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October 4, 2014   No Comments

A Weekend Made INN Vermont

Burlington is the largest city in the state of Vermont. Downtown city kids, just so you know it takes an hour to get a taxi.

Burlington is the largest city in the state of Vermont. Downtown city kids, just so you know it takes an hour to get a taxi.

My cool blonde friend C who reminds me of Mad Men’s Betty Draper recently got hitched in her hometown of Burlington, Vermont.  A bevy of East Coast It Girls descended on this truly postcard picturesque college town.  There we found a cobblestone pedestrian street, heritage buildings, boutique shopping and a plethora of restaurants serving delicious farm to table food.  The city hosts a weekend Farmer’s Market which is not to be missed.  I arrived a day early and I was busted by friends retail therapy in session.  Try the boutique Stella Mae (96 Church St.) for young contemporary brands like Ark & Co, Mink Pink, Chaser and funky shoes from Jeffrey Campbell and Dolce Vita.  To indulge your love of vintage, check out Old Gold (180 Main St.) which houses costumes, kitschy accessories, vintage dresses, denim cutoffs and trendy fast-fashion.  I bought so much there, they thanked me.  Bahahaha.  Noooo, thank you!

Cool like a cucumber: My friend C channels Betty Draper. And sidenote, I'm catching up on Mad Men. Don Draper is reallyx3 screwed up.

Cool like a cucumber: My friend C channels Betty Draper. And sidenote, I’m catching up on Mad Men. Don Draper is reallyx3 screwed up.

Loving to research travel, I insisted that we stay at Tripadvisor’s #1 Rated B&B Made Inn Vermont (204 S. Willard).  Designed in a Victorian Gothic Paris Vogue meets Rockstar, there were quirky details aplenty to feast your curiosity.  Like if Keith Richards opened up a B&B, this would be it.  Rooms are adorned in a cozy whimsical style with electric guitars and drums (instruments can be played until 10pm) and chalkboards for guests to leave their love notes or drawings.  The owner Linda insisted on making us her famous Sangria so we could chillax pre-cocktail party in the tiki backyard HT (hottt tub, oh yes this was the cincher).  When we told our friends, they said, “we got lemonade at our B&B??!!” I just advised that next time they should talk to me.  Such a fun mini-vacay! Highly recommended.

Peekaboo! A grand entrance

Peekaboo! A grand entrance

The sitting room where you could cozy up and read a book

The sitting room where you could cozy up and read a book

Coffee Table Books and a giant Hand (just because)

Coffee Table Books and a giant Hand (just because)

This is my dream: floor to ceiling shelves of books. Say no to Kobo!

This is my dream: floor to ceiling shelves of books. Say no to Kobo!

Moody art and a reading nook

Moody art and a reading nook

Breakfast is served. Nothing makes my life like fresh juice and fruit. General rule: I break detox for croissants.

Breakfast is served. Nothing makes my life like fresh juice and fruit. General rule: I break detox for croissants.

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July 2, 2014   No Comments

Summer Beach Dreams

Dolce Vita Romper

I never gave up on the romper. I love a good romper/gladiator sandal combo. That’s my drinks on a patio outfit. Loving the cool blues on this Dolce Vita Romper

A girl needs to dream.  A girl needs to dream about a bright sunshine-y day without rain or sleet or snow.  A day without salt stained boots and static-y flyaway hair.  Of turquoise waters and itsy-bitsy-teeny-weeny bikinis.  Having gone on a warm December vacation, my hopes were high for a quick segue way into Spring.  Since that hasn’t been the case, I’ll settle for Summer Beach Dreams.

I have already planned out my travels for the next year (because a girl has got to see the world).  Well, if you’re a follower of the LC, you know how I feel about a gypset wardrobe. If it were tropical here, I would be wearing a caftan walking down the sidewalk.  Some summer loves to keep you daydreaming… *lesigh

Bright bikini babes in H&M Swimwear

Bright bikini babes in H&M Swimwear

Psychedelic dreamers: I really need more Mara Hoffman Resort in my life right now.

Psychedelic dreamers: I really need more Mara Hoffman Resort in my life right now.

Vix St. Marten caftan because you know how I like to channel Morocco.

Vix St. Marten caftan because you know how I like to channel Morocco.

Daria in Gucci Macramé. I actually read this copy of Elle Spain while in Salamanca. Fun fact.

Daria in Gucci Macramé. I actually read this copy of Elle Spain while in Salamanca. Fun fact.

 

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April 8, 2014   No Comments

Beauty Trends: Oils Are My Secret

 

Vogue Beauty: We all aspire to younger more beautiful skin. Sometimes less is more!

Vogue Beauty: We all aspire to younger more beautiful skin. Sometimes less is more!

There a long-standing joke that I age backwards, so I refer to myself as Benjamin Button.  In my current arsenal of age-defying beauty secrets are Oils.  With their numerous minerals and natural properties, oils are fast becoming a trending alternative to common products.  I test a variety of products to see what works best for my hair and skin type but here are a few of my faves.

Ojon Rare Blend Oil - I brought this with me to Costa Rica and would apply it to my wet hair in the afternoons. Obsessed with the fragrant smell and moisture boost which made my locks lustrous.

Ojon Rare Blend Oil – I brought this with me to Costa Rica and would apply it to my wet hair in the afternoons. Obsessed with the fragrant smell and moisture boost which made my locks lustrous.

Morroccan Oil - I also love the tiny travel size. You only need a dime size dollop which you can run through your hair, focusing on ends for maximum shine. Be careful not to apply too much as you can get a greasy effect.

Morroccan Oil – I also love the tiny travel size. You only need a dime size dollop which you can run through your hair, focusing on ends for maximum shine. Be careful not to apply too much as you can get a greasy effect.

Julep Bare Face Oil - I typically wear makeup so I use this facial oil after a green tea scrub. It removes excess makeup and leaves my skin with radiant glow. There is also a subtle hint of citrus which I enjoy.

Julep Bare Face Oil – I typically wear makeup so I use this facial oil after a green tea scrub. It removes excess makeup and leaves my skin with radiant glow. There is also a subtle hint of citrus which I enjoy.

The biggest thing I noticed about using oils is that they feel fresh and natural.  With my skin when it’s behaving nicely, I don’t need to wear much makeup.  Do you use any beauty oils that you think are the bomb-diggity?  I would love to know. xo

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February 22, 2014   No Comments

Whatever Happens In Cabo…

Cabo San Lucas, Lover's Rock. Reminds me of that Sade album that I played on repeat "Won't pretend, that I intend to stop living..."

never happened!!  (ba-dum-pum)  This is especially true if you go to Cabo San Lucas to soak up the sun and take an extended siesta all day on the beach, then repose by the pool, gorge on salsa and tortilla chips only to siesta in your room and tuck in early to catch Kourtney & Kim Take Miami on E! Latino.  But if I was in Cabo with my girlfriends at 21, I would be that girl drinking pina coladas in the infinity pool, doing the hotel dance and waking up my neighbours at 4am from a late night dance session to latin house.  How can I judge the kids on Spring Break?  I was that girl.

Cabo San Lucas is a resort town on the southern tip of the Baja California.  Nestled amid the scenic mountains are million dollar mansions and a marina filled with bright white yachts.  This charming town has restaurants, bars and a few outdoor shops.  Perch yourself on the pier at La Casa Country, enjoy a plate of fish tacos, a major pina colada and people watch until the sun sets. Or indulge in some retail therapy at Ondade Mar for vibrant Columbian swimwear or uniquely latin caftans.

Much like an observer of street trends, I thought I would share some insights straight off the beach…

  • Day Glow Neon – Perhaps you feel you’ve already done neon but it was huge on the beach.  To avoid neon overkill, many gals paired their bright bandeau with a black bottom or toned down the fluorescence by wearing a print accented with neon.  For the less fashionistah adventuress, muted neons in coral, pink and chartreuse are the way to go. 

Free People Yellow Neon Bikini with your matching straw fedora. Fedorable!

Fun fact: There were less string bikinis and more hipster bottoms. Mix it up with your J. Crew Neon Swirl Bikini

  • Stacked Bracelets – Oh, you can never wear too many at once! The look is a mashup of skinny bangles, round beads, braided leather or string friendship bracelets.  To elevate the look add a few simple gold bangles, charm bracelets or a skinny watch.

Try this at home! Alexis Bittar and Cara bracelets c/o Nordstrom

  • Haute Hippie Headwrap – Perhaps the beach is the best place for fashion risk-taking.  Swim turbans and headwraps abound!  Function meets fashion!  Not only are you shading your pretty little head from the sun, you are also making a MAJOR statement. 

This is my favourite way to wear a silk scarf on the beach. Take a rectangular scarf and tie at the crown of your head. Secure with bobby pins. Secret Garden Head Wrap

  • Return of the Crop Top – Oh yes, 90’s resurgence. Save the fitted crop top for the teens and the 20-somethings.  Go oversize for that Flashdance/Let’s Get Physical, off the shoulder, laisser-faire, I’m casual vibe.

Nothing's better than a super oversize soft cotton tee. Roxy Sea Crop Top

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February 24, 2013   No Comments

Hot Child in NYC

We drove into NYC as the July 4th fireworks lit the city skyline. Le sigh!

This blog post is alternatively titled “WWCD,” the acryonym broken down as ‘What Would Carrie Do?’ Get that on your very retro, 90’s throwback, nameplate gold necklace, why dontcha?  I love New York.  Do you love New York?  If you don’t, you should!  There is a frenetic energy that underscores the city, a dash of glamour punctuated with personality, heart and grit. 

Classic Carrie: Did you have a nameplate necklace too? I need to find mine...

OMG, do payphones still exist??! Carrie Bradshaw uses a payphone after throwing her cell into the ocean (rage shame spiral) SATC movie

All of my travels to New York are filled with wild adventure and enough sketchy tall tales to fill a screenplay in which incriminating names and places have been changed to protect the innocent. (Ahem, said film would be directed by Wes Anderson, young me played by Vanessa Hudgens, older me Thandie Newton).  While I would love to share all my secrets, my hair would deflate. 

Here are some fun places to see and be seen, that both Carrie and I quite enjoy….

The iconic Manolo Blahnik shoe. Love this blush satin version of the ones that Carrie left in her walk-in closet.

 Manolo Blahnik (31 West 54th Street) –  My friend C dragged me to the store in search of perfect wedding shoes.  Surprisingly, the store is in a tiny brick building (blink and you’ll miss it) with Manolo’s strewn about on ledges and divans like an Upper East side apartment of an aging socialite.  Apparently, the ladies of Manolo need to take a siesta between 2-3pm.  So make sure you go post-haste, guzzle your brunch Mimosa before they shoo-shoo you out of there.  If you are going to spend a wild fortune on shoes, you should languish in a chaise, take your time and try on high heels a la Cinderella.

BOHEMIAN: Free People gives me crochet and tassles for Summer 2012! I'll have a second helping of that.

Shopping in SoHo – I think this neighbourhood (SOuth of HOuston) in Lower Manhattan has such character with its cobblestone streets, funky boutiques, artsy galleries and cafes.  It is a tourist mecca on the weekends but more casual and chilled out on a weekday.  You can get your boho on at Free People or Madewell, max your credit card at the Bloomingdales shoe department, rock leather and lace at All Saints, run into Clinton & Stacy at Scoop NYC or stalk your fave Kardashian at DASH (mine is Khloe for laughs, Kourtney for clothes).

Madewell: Good enough for It/Hipster Poster Girl Alexa Chung.

Buddakan (75 9th Avenue) – This Chelsea supper club was in the engagement dinner scene of the SATC movie.  The Asian fusion menu is tapas style, perfect for sharing and reasonably priced…until your waiter starts free pouring the Grey Goose.  But it’s ok, you’ve had dinner so the hangover won’t be that bad.

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July 16, 2012   No Comments