May 23rd, 2013
Smack dab in the middle of Venice and Malibu, two of our favourite LA haunts, lays the Santa Monica oasis The Fairmont Miramar Hotel and Bungalows. We felt like a Hollywood starlet of old ensconced in one of its signature bungalow suites complete with a private entrance and a lush, bougainvillea-filled patio. Here’s how we managed to get the best of SoCal without ever leaving the hotel:
A-list favourite Exhale Spa is conveniently situated right next to the bungalows, which means you can roll over in your robe and slippers, Hollywood style. Do try the spa’s signature Flow massage where expert therapists roll and kneed (think detoxifying but pain free) with a mix of carrot and avocado oil that will leave you feeling rested and ready for dinner at Fig. www.exhalespa.com
Being big fans of small plates, local ingredients and relaxed rooms, we were thrilled to walk into Fig, Chef Ray Garcia’s farm-to-table restaurant located poolside. The wait staff is incredibly knowledgeable about the locally sourced wines and menu items and we couldn’t get enough of our mains – the Ocean Trout and the Short-rib Meatloaf. You know it’s a winner when more than half the clientele are stylish locals who are on a first-name basis with their waiters. www.figsantamonica.com
We fell in love with the chic décor of the incredibly popular Bungalow Bar (think your ideal beach house complete with requisite ikat pillows, softly glowing lanterns and lounge seating). We were lured in by the smell of Le Labo’s Santal candle exuding the perfect sexy, beachy scent that about sums up the vibe of the bar. Do try the house specialty— fruity sangria that packs a punch. Tip: get there early and camp-out, as it’s shoulder-to-shoulder come 8 p.m. nightly. www.thebungalowsm.com
See our Santa Monica photo album today on our Editors' Diary.
May 22nd, 2013
Desire the look of the ultra-Canadian deep woods cabin but shudder at the thought of Bambi on your wall? Us too, that’s why we love Bucky the Deer.
This Deer Head Trophy is the perfect DIY project for folks that want to stick with cardboard and glue for the time being. Bucky gives an instant, camp-y upgrade to a modern space. Let loose with glitter, paint and stickers for the ultimate eclectic deer head look.
At ReWorks, 1217B 9th Avenue SE, 403-263-4366
May 21st, 2013
The smartie-pants behind the popular Cheezy Bizness food truck, Nicole Fewell has more than amazing sandwiches up her sleeve. B
And what goes better with grilled cheese than a mean cocktail? Porter’s Tonic ($16) is a delicious tonic syrup that adds a little bit of kick to your regular old G&T. With ingredients like agave nectar, lemongrass and cinchona bark you can’t help but feel a little bit healthy as you slurp it down.
Each batch is handcrafted and numbered making it a great gift... for yourself. —Kait Kucy
At Vine Arts, www.vinearts.ca
May 20th, 2013
While the cosmetics junkies may be sporting neons and frosty pastels, we can’t get enough of golds and neutrals to keep things natural looking this summer.
Urban Decays’ Naked Palette ($60) pulls together 12 eye shadows that look good on everyone, no matter your skin tone. The set also comes with a mini Eyeshadow Primer Potion to ensure your shadows stay on well into the day.
Our favourite shade? Sin, the champagne shimmer is gorgeous swiped on for a bit of daytime glamour.
$60 at www.sephora.ca
May 18th, 2013
Planning a family holiday with lots of day trips? Here are three packable items that allow you to be prepared, without the bulk.
Hershel’s new Packables range allows you to travel with a variety of bag options. Featuring a duffle, daypack, or tote that all fit into a small pouch, you can whip them out before a day of sightseeing, or at the airport when you’ve stocked up on wine from the duty free. From $9.99 at Herschel.
If you prefer packing your own meals on holiday, Lunchskins are the perfect companion. The reusable snack bags mean you can travel light, but with the equivalent of 20 tupperwares. They can hold fruit, sandwiches, or treats, and are easy to rinse out in a hotel room. From $8.49 at Rasberry Kids.
The nostalgic Claude Klassic K-Way is a reminder of when we were kids and proudly wore our parka tucked into a little bag around our waist. Featuring a variety of prints and a size range from 12 months to teens, this is an absolute must-have when you are out and about anywhere that might greet you with a downpour (Vancouver, ahem!) $54 at K-Way. http://k-way.ca
—Alexandra Suhner Isenberg
May 17th, 2013
The ubiquitous beer hall is here to stay, so what makes National on 10th stand out from the rest of the craft beer crowd?
Pins and balls, that's what. Yes, you heard that right – the brand-spanking-new National on 10th's fully functioning bowling alley will be opened later in the summer. Meanwhile, active beer-sippers can get competitive playing foosball and table tennis. If sports aren’t your thing, why not try your hand at getting exclusive access to the prestigious Bourbon Room (tip: no smartphones allowed, this room is purely tasting fine beverages and mellow conversation).
Now where can we find a stylish bowling shirt? —Kait Kucy
The National on 10th, 341 10th Ave. SW, Calgary, www.ntnl.ca
May 16th, 2013
Yes, Zurich's clean, organized and easy to get around – but there's plenty of creativity to go around, too. Try these stops on your next visit to Switzerland's financial capital.
Switzerland ain't cheap, so why pay for bottled water? Make sure to bring a purse-size bottle to refill in one of the city's more than 1,200 stylish fountains featuring the city's very drinkable water. (The exception? Any fountains marked with the sign "kein trinkwasser", which we in fact never spotted.)
To the Swiss, fondue's a winter food, but we say tourists get to break the rules. Head to Le Dézaley to get your fix and sample other local specialities like rösti (potato pancakes), spätli (dumplings) and Vaudois sausage.
Look for souvenirs with class at Schweizer Heimatwerk, which sells its selection of high-quality goods – think jewellery, home decor items and kids' wooden toys – both in the old town and at the airport. Off the beaten path, head to West Zurich's Viadukt shopping centre, a reclaimed area nestled in the arches of a working 19th-century rail viaduct, for more offbeat retailers; around the corner, stop by Frau Gerolds Garten to browse through several cute clothing boutiques.
Thursday evenings, take a 90-minute city tour in a classic tram complete with wine or champagne and snacks on the Apéritif Tram, which makes its way past some of the city's top sights. The rest of the week, head up early to beat the crowds to the Jules Verne bar with its panoramic views of the cityscape.
Pick up a 24- or 72-hour Zürich Card for unlimited access to the city's beyond-amazing transit system – that means trams, trains, buses, boats and even the cable car – plus free access to most museums and discounted city tours. Don't miss a guided walk around the historic and well-preserved Old Town.
May 15th, 2013
Summer means loads of time outdoors bike-riding around the neighbourhood andgardening in the community plot – it is essential to keep skin nourished, soft and hydrated.
After a scorching weekend, our skin is crying for attention. We picked up RoC’s super comforting 24h Ultra-Nourishing Balm to do some hopeful recon on our ravaged skin.
The results? Super silky skin in better shape than we started; applied daily we could be back to baby’s bottom smoothness in no time.
$26 at Shoppers Drug Mart, www.rocskincare.com
May 14th, 2013
There's a reason Scandinavian interior design is so coveted: clean lines and minimalism never go out of style.
Beltline design shop, Kit Interior Objects curates its collections with an eye towards this simple aesthetic. Muuto, a Danish brand, has released ‘Stacked’ (starting at $450), a gorgeous modular shelving system. The best thing about the shelf? Each piece will be completely unique as you get to choose different sized boxes and finishes to generate your custom shelf.
And bonus points for furniture we don't have to put together. —Kait Kucy
Kit Interior Objects, 725 11 Ave. SW, Calgary, www.kitinteriorobjects.com
May 13th, 2013
Just like the folks at Calgary startup FairGoods, we love to buy products that have a story behind them.
Perfect for summertime coffee dates on the porch this Anchor Sugar & Creamer (US$32) from Brooklyn-based BROOKLYNREHAB is absolutely one of those items. Inspired by the designers studio window views, the nautical themed set was designed and made in her Brooklyn studio.
Plenty of Calgarian designers launching new product on their soon – you can actually keep track of in-progress projects to pre-order.
Who says life isn't fair? —Kait Kucy
By appointment, FairGoods, 403-351-0613, www.fairgoods.com