I have fallen in love with Amsterdam. I don’t know how it is that this stunning city has been off my radar for this long. It’s a photographer’s dream with the never-ending canals wrapping around brick lane roads and arched bridges. Everything here is wonderful: The Dutch architecture! The flowers! The stroopwafel cookie! The Van Gogh Museum! Vondelpark! Bike rides! Boat rides! Shopping! and of course, amazing food. It’s a perfect place to escape to for a weekend away, charming and walkable and full of anything your heart may desire.
10 Favorite finds in Amsterdam
Van Stapele Koekmakerij – Just imagine the best warm chocolate cookie in the world. This is that.
Screaming Beans – Amsterdam hands down makes the best cappuccinos and this little espresso spot is heavenly.
Marc O’ Polo – Cool, comfy, casual clothing
The Dylan – Gorgeous hotel, amazing afternoon “high wine” experience.
Ron Gastrobar – TOPS. Some of the best modern food I’ve ever had. Get the “Surprise Egg” for dessert.
Boat tour – you have to experience the city on the water. We did it at night with a bottle of champagne.
Brasserie Harkema – French restaurant in an old cigar factory
Lyppens Antique Jewelry Store – I bought an antique gold ring with dancing baby diamonds I call my champagne ring with my friend Laurel who met us in Amsterdam for all the “off the record” memories.
Biking through Vondelpark
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I have always known about the beauty of Lake Como. The way people talk about it is as if it’s this magical emerald place from a fairytale story book. Well, that’s pretty much how it looked. Taking the frequent and quick 1 hour train from Milan we made our way crursing the waters in no time. My imagination went wild looking at all the beautiful villas that climb up the mountain in an array of colors. Each turn of the boat reveals another small, cobblestone town shinning proudly, white sailboats bobbing at the mouth in a friendly wave hello. There is a calm to Lake Como. A retreat feel. Where hours are spent in a garden or at lunch with friends, the memory softened by the damp misty light. A long walk or a quiet boat ride from one little town to the next on the lake’s shore is the day’s biggest activity leaving you alone in your thoughts to imagine what it would be like to retire here and wake up everyday to sheer beauty.
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After attending the MICAM trade show we had a day to explore around Milan which was my first time visiting this city. Fueled with Instagram recommendations we started out in the morning at the Duomo (how can you not) which was exceptionally beautiful. We wandered the beautiful halls of Galleria Vittorio Emanuele and Via Della Spiga. We ate gelato, dinned at Taglio, looked at old books, watched people play bocce ball, and had the most charming dinner at Al Fresco. It was an amuse-bouche of Milan, drowned in Pasta and Aperol spritz and a lost in a sea of Italian suits in the most beautiful men’s street fashion I’ve ever seen.
Here are some snapshots from our moments lost in the hallways of Milan…
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It’s hard not to fall in love with Paris. Her architectural streets, her dancing light, her chalky tonality bathing you in softness and drowned in French accents. It was a weekend away, short but everlasting in my memories, swept up in a hotel suite from a dream and made simple with long afternoon walks with nowhere in particular to go… just the way I love to see Paris.
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