Tag Archives: travel

Paris – A State of Mind

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You hear it so often in a New York State of Mind. I think I am constantly in a Paris State of Mind. I have had a few projects in the US including LA and Chicago that have taken me away from my true love of Paris. My biggest project is Paris based and I am pretty darn excited about it. So for now if you don’t mind I will be in a Paris State of Mind until further notice. I hope you will join me!

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California Roundup

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If you were following along on snapchat I packed a lot into my Cali trip in just a few short days! Here’s a little recap of where I went and some of my favorite places I recommend:

Beverly Hills Hotel 

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Staying at the Beverly Hills Hotel was definitely on my bucket list of hotels and it didn’t disappoint.

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Alfred’s Coffee in Melrose

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I finally tried Alfred’s Coffee which kept me up until 4am. I guess picked up an iced coffee at 7pm wasn’t the best decision. Alfred’s tea room closed earlier in the day. Here I am wearing my signature madewell bag that goes everywhere with me!

Beverly Wilshire 

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The Beverly Wilshire has been on my list for as long as I remember. My sister and I used to watch Pretty Woman and a few years ago on my first trip to LA we popped in for a quick visit. This time around I enjoyed time at the spa and lunch by the pool. The staff were amazing and I even got a grand tour of some of the suites!

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Across from the pool was blooming jasmine to the left and with the wind I could smell it all the way from my lounge chair. I ordered the bento box with 4 different salads and it was by far the best lunch I ate in Beverly Hills!

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A little fun in the sun (okay I was completely in the shade) wearing sunscreen before my spa time. I was recommended to have the Diamond Rose Facial and I must say it was amazing. I was so relaxed the entire time. I didn’t sleep well do to the coffee the night before and I fell asleep during my treatment. I came out with my skin glowing and a week later my skin still looks fantastic!

Newport Beach:

I spent the weekend with family in Newport beach. We even squeezed in a little hiking. Based on a recommendation we headed to Bear Flag Fish for tacos and they were by far one of my favorite tacos.

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A few French Finds along the way: I am giving a hint to my latest project but I was on the search for some Paris in LA spots and through some recommendations I found some.

Breakfast at Zinc Cafe and Market

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They had an adorable marketplace too that sold french salts, cookbooks, and dishes.

Maison Midi 

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I stumbled upon this shop while walking around Fashion Island and it was pretty much my dream come true. Everything French you could ever want including those bistro chairs from Parisian Cafes that I have been dying to find for so long. Maison Midi 

Bottega Louie 

I heard about Bottega Louie from friends on instagram and knew I had to check it out. Macarons are just about as French as you can get and this place has just about every flavor and color you could dream about. I tried salted caramel, vanilla, rose, peanut butter and jelly, and my new favorite mint chocolate chip. If you have ever tasted a thin mint girl scout cookie this was the same flavor!

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Four Seasons Los Angeles

My last stop on the tour was Four Seasons Los Angeles. Its not too far from the Beverly Wilshire but has a whole different feel. Its much smaller and intimate. I immediately felt at home in these new surroundings due to a very familiar thing in the lobby. Jeff Leatham who designs the George V famous florals in the lobby is back and just started doing the flowers. I had lunch by the pool and a tour of the new rooms they are about to debut. I have to keep the pictures to myself as the new rooms are still top secret. But I promise you will LOVE them!!

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That’s a wrap on my trip to California! A bit thank you to Grand Luxury for hosting me on the tour of Beverly Hills. I hope you enjoyed following along and if you have any favorites that I might have missed please comment below. I hope to be back again soon for more fun in the sun.

xo

 

Breakfast at the Polo Lounge

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I am out in LA for a mixture of family time and work. I had the pleasure to stay at the Beverly Hills hotel and its everything I hoped it would be and more. That may sound cheesy but its so true! If you have been following along on snapchat you saw a lot of what I have been doing but if not here is a sneak peak. _MG_8362small

Breakfast started in the Polo Lounge. These are the most amazing pancakes of my life. Meyer lemon butter on blueberry ricotta pancakes.

The Polo Lounge is usually filled with people but if you wake up early enough to arrive when it first opens you can get a peak of it empty.

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Its that beautiful that you want to stay here all day. I highly recommend the McCarthy Salad and chocolate soufflé

More to come… xoxo

 

Musee D’Orsay

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My first trip to Paris was in 2003 I had terrible bronchitis and it was Valentines Day. Nothing was going to stop me from seeing the city. I sat on the top of the double decker bus camera in hand and enjoyed every freezing moment. When I was in High School my French teacher did a lesson on French Impressionism. We had to identify all the artists by their brush strokes. I was so excited to see all the paintings I had studied in school. This was my first trip to the Musee D’Orsay and I was in love. I keep returning and discovering new parts to this beautiful museum. Its by far one of my top picks and a great rainy day activity. What’s your favorite museum in Paris?

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A little update on what I have been up to

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When I first moved back to Chicago and finally had my own place the ideas kept coming to me like crazy. I finally felt creative for the first time in a while. I still wanted to travel but decided to take things to a different level. I have been active on Instagram for a while now and wanted to create content for hotel groups. If I wasn’t renting an apartment for months at a time I had stay in hotels. So why not trade hotel stays for photographs? I had a few ideas of hotels I wanted to work with which I will get to in a different post because I dreamt it and then I actually made it happen. Its been a bit crazy!

In January I traveled to Paris for 6 nights and stayed with a group of hotels. Two nights in each property. So many people ask for hotel suggestions in Paris and I am working on putting together a list but here is the first one called Plaza Tour Eiffel The location is just around from the trocadero and you can catch the sunset or sunrise from this beautiful spot. I recommend sunrise since you won’t be bombarded with as many people. The room had a view of the eiffel tower and little balcony.

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I was welcomed with a box of the most beautiful and delicious macarons from Carette. They went quickly but you can’t blame me can you?!

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The most stunning rooftop views from the little terrace. The hotel is perfect situated by the metro and there is trocadero square to grab a coffee or lunch at one of the many cafes.

Paris Plans – April 2016

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Every ticket I book abroad has a waiting period. I would be lying if I said I make plans and book them without any fear or reservations. I have known for a while I was going back to Paris in April. My sister told me the day of the Paris attacks in November that she had booked a ticket for her family to go to Paris. This was just hours before the attacks. Thank goodness she kept her plans. She always told me they would wait and see if it was safe but for now they were still going…

I planned to arrive the same day my sister did so I could pack in as much time as possible with them. My niece is 2 1/2 and I have been waiting since the day she was born to take her to Paris. I begged every trip to let me take her. This time she is finally coming with us! She now asks me “Auntie show me the eiffel tower” and “show me Paris” asking for videos and photos on my phone. It makes me so happy! I cannot wait for her first croissant and carousel ride. There will be a lot more about Emma’s first trip to Paris in later blog posts.

So much of me wanted to book a one way ticket to Paris. Its probably one of my biggest regrets coming home after all these years. I keep reminding myself that I am still young and there is still so much time in my life to live abroad again. I can’t wait to share the love of travel with someone.

The plan right now is the spend two weeks in Paris. A few days with family, then my Paris family, my birthday, friends and work. Its going to be a jam packed two weeks and I hope that if the weather cooperates cherry blossoms will be in bloom during this time too. I am so grateful for the opportunity to run my own business and create my own schedule. That also means you work hard and you play hard.

I can’t avoid the most recent topic in the news of the Brussel attacks. I am keeping everyone in my thoughts and prayers. This has to stop! But one thing that can’t stop is travel. The terrorists continue to fill us with fear. The first thing people want to do is cancel trips and avoid danger. But if we avoid living our lives then we are already surrendering and letting them win. Paris is quiet now because of the attacks in November and I can only imagine the Brussel attacks will cause more trip cancelations. I still plan on traveling in two weeks and if you have a trip planned I encourage you to do the same.

I would love to know your thoughts on travel in Europe and if you have a trip scheduled are you keeping or canceling.

xo

 

 

 

Happy 2015 to you all

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This past year was filled with challenges and triumphs. I traveled to Paris (a few times), Rome, Florence, Reims, New York City, Miami, and Chicago. I don’t know where I will be headed this year just yet but I will be sure to update you soon. I am happy to close a chapter or two and look forward to what 2015 has in store.

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“once a year go someplace you have never been before” Dalai Lama

Where are you traveling to this year?

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