Tag Archives: hotel

FAENA

I was excited to experience FAENA Buenos Aires after first experiencing their Miami property under construction last December. Faena is genius, always transforming locations into hip new areas with their interesting design, surprising flourishes, and their impressive arts programs. The Faena areas turn into cultural districts, going above and beyond simply contemporary accommodations. But… accommodations they do have. There is a modern grandness to Faena you instantly feel as you walk through the red carpet entrance of this turn-of-the-20th-century grain warehouse turned stylish Buenos Aires hot spot. I loved the contrast of the old industrial brick building to the sleek glamour of Faena. Accented in red and white, I couldn’t help but think of the creator of this “universe” as they call it, Alan Faena. One of the most stylish men in the world, he is always in white and surrounded in red roses. I can see so much of him personally in this space and I like the intimacy of his specific identity and vision showing through.

Walking into the guest room, I was charmed by how they positioned the bed: floating in the center at a diagonal angle, covered in fantastic crisp white bedding that was a dream to sleep on. The best part for me though was the extra-large soaking bathtub. It was the perfect medicine to ease the pain of my last night out in Buenos Aires (if you saw my snap story you know what I mean…).

Knowing Alan and his style, it was to no surprise to find a completely white formal dining room adorned with white unicorns and an exquisite tasting menu. The wine cellar, directly below the restaurant underground, is another example of the balance between old industrial and new design. It was here we had a romantic tasting of all Argentinean wines, my favorite being the organic biodynamic option from Patagonia.

They say you can’t go to Buenos Aires and not see a tango show—so here we were, at Faena, with what has been declared the best and least touristy show in the city and I have to say, it was fabulous… but now I’m slightly obsessed with tango, too. The club was a perfect little cabaret size, with a live band and gorgeous, gorgeous, gorgeous dancers. Afterwards, outside the bustling Library Lounge, we sat on red cushions around the pool adorned in a golden crown fountain and reflected on this amazing city, so rich in culture and life and felt grateful to dance into other people’s worlds so far away from our own.

  A look into the ultra luxurious Faena Buenos Aires hotel A look into the ultra luxurious Faena Buenos Aires hotel    A look into the ultra luxurious Faena Buenos Aires hotel (more…)

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Alvear Palace Hotel

Like a sparkling jewel atop the crown of the Parisian influenced Buenos Aires neighborhood of Recoleta sits the regal Alvear Palace Hotel. This Leading Hotels of the World palace was built in the Louis XV style in 1932 out of materials brought from France making the property feel fit for a princess. As a luxury meeting point for the Buenos Aires elite, it was even more heightened when the President of Argentina decided to come to the hotel for dinner during our stay, filling the lobby with press, security, onlookers all vying for her attention. It is to say, this hotel with its cozy Champagne Bar and elegant restaurants is a place to see and be seen.

I felt like Pretty Woman, sleeping under crystal chandeliers, running around in white terrycloth robes, eating dulce de leche chocolates from a silver tray (a daily treat from the hotel) and soaking in a golden fixture bathtub. It didn’t hurt that every room of the suite was adorned in red roses as if waiting to be brought to life in a tango dance. We dined at the hotel’s French restaurant La Bourgogne where I had the opourtunity to try frog legs for the first time, and yes, they taste like chicken. There is also fish from Patagonia, table side sautéed steak in a cognac and my favorite french restaurant trick in the book: the cheese cart.

Everyone told me before this trip that Buenos Aires was the Paris of the south and after a few nights at Alvear Palace with the city’s elegant residential district of Recoleta waiting proudly outside the swinging doors to be discovered, I have to say… it did.

  The historic Alvear Palace Hotel in Buenos Aires, Argentina The historic Alvear Palace Hotel in Buenos Aires, Argentina The historic Alvear Palace Hotel in Buenos Aires, Argentina (more…)

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Le Bristol Hotel

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A child of the 90s I grew up with this fantasy of Paris I found in movies. The hotel suite that perfectly frames the Eiffel Tower in its windows, bouquets of flowers and white walled gardens where fluffy white cats come to lay in the sun before evenings in little chic black dresses and dinners where each course comes with a wine pairing. I found that glamorous Paris I so long ago dreamed about at Le Bristol Hotel.

I have been lucky enough to find myself in Paris quite often, and from time to time I can be caught in a daydream of what it would be like to live in this city that captures my soul. When I come to Paris I mostly just take my camera and walk. Walk for days. It never gets old to me, I never run out of things to photograph or be inspired by. Never, not even when I stayed in the most lovely apartment, have I desired to “stay in”… that is until I stayed at the Le Bristol. Already as I write this at Charles De Gaulle airport the memory of our suite feels more like lying half awake in a garden day dreaming all afternoon.

There is not a single detail of this hotel, which opened in 1925 in the heart of Paris’s fashion district, that isn’t wonderfully glamorous and idyllically French. From the dazzling array of chandeliers to the 18th century Toile de Jouy decor, it is unapologetically luxurious. It’s no wonder it attracts the stylish clientele to match from movie stars to entertainers and (to my pleasure) fashion photographers. It even had a place in Woody Allen’s movie Midnight in Paris.

During World War II the Hotel Le Bristol became the American Embassy and even harbored a Jewish architect who would later design the stunning glass and wrought-iron elevator I described as what it must feel like to travel inside a diamond

Of course they have a beautiful spa, wonderfully opulent bars and restaurants tucked here and there around the hotel corridors, but it was what we discovered on the 6th floor that really took our breath away. A pool designed in the likeness of a large sailboat as imagined by Professor Pinnau, who most notably designed the yachts for the Onassis family, wrapped in walls of windows with sweeping views of Paris and most beautifully, Sacre Coeur. While the pool was a popular spot in the afternoons, it was early in the morning alone with the sunrise I found it to be one of the most peaceful places in Paris.

But perhaps the most surprising feature of this incredible hotel are the two fluffy white cats that live amongst the marble and roses. There is nothing more charming than having afternoon tea in the hotel’s garden with company of a furry little friend at your feet.

90 years after her opening here she stands, a lovely as ever….

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St. Regis New York

Oh the glamorous St. Regis New York hotel. I seem to always find myself here if it’s for a photoshoot, to film a video, attend a midnight supper, watch a  New York Fashion Week designer shows, or meet a client at the King Cole Bar for cocktails. Nestled in the heart of Manhattan its unyielding standard of elegance, history, and hospitality make it the perfect place to find yourself for any reason. Having just finished a new redesign throughout the hotel the property feels contemporary and fresh without loosing the formality synonymous with its name.

When Kevin and I wrapped a very intense shoot out in L.A. last week for Volvo we decided to carve out some R&R time, and take a moment to celebrate how far we have come and what we have survived (cough, 3AM call times three days in a row). Since I went for days shooting outside with no makeup, dirty from crawling on the ground and sweaty from standing in the sun, I wanted full fledged romance with crystal chandeliers, red lipstick and high heels.

So we had a little staycation at the St. Regis New York with champagne and oysters, fine dining and dessert followed by sleeping late and lazy morning baths. It was heaven and for a moment, high atop a building in Midtown Manhattan, we felt like two kids drunk in love lost in a beautiful castle in the sky.

StRegis_NewYork_01  Above, Kevin wears his new Ralph Lauren suit as we arrive to the St. Regis with our Hartmann Tweed weekender. Below, I wear a Ralph Lauren white boatneck summer dress and Elie Tahari heels.  StRegis_NewYork_02 (more…)



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