Thursday, June 28, 2012

City Oasis

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This image of Cynthia Rowley's backyard oasis in NYC's Greenwich Village from June's Matchbook Magazine sent me over the moon. As a New Yorker who has been sweating her face off these past few weeks, I could really use a townhouse with a pool like this. Where do I sign?

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Tripnotes: Long Weekend in Anguilla

Some trips you plan leisurely with time to spare, and others...well, let’s just say, this trip came together completely about 2 days before our scheduled departure to San Juan. I won’t bore you with the details of how and why, but as luck would have it, everything fell into place and I was finally able to get EXCITED about traveling to Anguilla.

We had booked flights to San Juan, spending an evening there and then hopping a puddle jumper to Anguilla the following morning. I wished we had more time to explore Old San Juan (a favorite of mine since I was a little girl), but we literally landed so late our only food option was room service. Not my ideal evening in Puerto Rico, but it would have to do.


After a quick dip at the hotel pool, it was off to the airport. I have to say flying to Anguilla is not recommended for the faint of heart...if cramming yourself into a 9 seater turbo prop plane with no air conditioning or liquid refreshment doesn’t appeal, you might not want to read any further. For real. One of 9 seats is shot-gun next to the pilot. I consider myself pretty adventurous, but there were some armrest clenching moments where I thought “I hope my my Mom never finds out about this...”.

A white-knuckled hour or so later and we were safely on the ground at the very rustic Anguilla airport. After all that high flying, I was ready for a drink, and lucky for me, there was one with my name on it at The Viceroy.




Checking in to the Viceroy Anguilla is like warm cookies and milk. The lobby is low-key and glamorous all at once. We learned upon check-in that we had been upgraded to a lovely Villa complete with a “Lifestyle Coordinator”, aka butler. I mean, that’s normal life, right?

Our villa was too perfect; An infinity pool overlooking the ocean, enormous spa-like outdoor showers and cushy bedrooms, all designed perfectly thanks to the Miss Kelly Wearstler.




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My favorite had to be the chef’s kitchen, described by our “Lifestyle Coordinator” as “a standard kitchen”. We made use of this on multiple occasions, including one night where we grilled beautiful fresh Anguillian Lobsters.


Truth be told, this Tripnotes is more visual than most since it was pretty much impossible to leave the Villa/Resort. There was some loose talk of snorkeling and boat trips, but once we checked in all of those ideas quickly disappeared. Nobody wanted to leave.








The one place we could agree on visiting off campus was Blanchard’s Beach Shack. While the food at the resort was tasty, the price tag was slightly off putting. Blanchard’s was a 5 minute walk down the beach and the food and ambiance was fantastic. Toes firmly planted in sand, we enjoyed jerk chicken sandwiches, fresh cut french fries and Red Stripes. Life was good.

For the most part, we fell in to a lazy routine of lounging by our villa pool all morning, venturing to Blanchard’s for lunch, and then retiring back to the Villa for board games and cocktails.





Evenings we either ate-in or trotted down the beach for dinner (we loved Straw Hat).




Anguilla is known as a foodie island and had tons of restaurants that sounded interesting, but the convenience of our resort made it difficult to justify getting in our rental car to drive 30 minutes away for dinner. I hope that when we go back, we’ll try some out some new places, but if we stay at The Viceroy, the chances of that happening are pretty slim.


All in all, this vacation was probably the most relaxing I’ve ever been on. And, without a trip to the Spa! The resort itself is gorgeous – it basically feels like you’re walking around in an issue of Elle Décor. All. Day. And the people are warm and friendly.


Despite the headache of planning this trip, it could not have been more perfect once we arrived. And I can say without a doubt that we will go back. Thanks for the memories, Anguilla. You’re tops!


Monday, June 18, 2012

How To: Feather Your Rental Nest


Rita Konig had a recent article for WSJ about how to bring personality and life to a summer rental. Since her ideas were a bit lofty ($130 Mae Mougin cereal bowls anyone?) I figured I’d share a few of the ways I’m making my summer rental feel more like home.

1. Rugs are a perfect way to bring personality to a rental. This Pottery Barn Awning Stripe Dhurrie feels chic and adds a graphic punch. Plus, I got it on sale!

2. Boxwoods are fairly low maintenance and make my front step look cheery and bright.

3. Cocktail napkins are a necessary item for Summer (cocktails and summer go hand in hand at our house...). These are an inexpensive way to make your rental feel like home. You can find similar ones at Anthropologie.

4. Switching out the wall art is the fastest and easiest way to make a rental truly yours (remember plastering posters all over your dorm room walls?) Beachy art like this feels right for a summer rental, and personal. I like 20x200 for affordable pieces (and framing!).

5. For instant ambiance, I stock up on candles like these from Le Labo (my favorite is the Fig scent). They’re a great addition to a guest bathroom or bedroom and make everything all cozy.

6. These vintage French enamel signs are available on eBay and are an inexpensive way to give your rental curb appeal. How do you feather your rented nest?

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Island in The Sun...


Originally when I started La Dulci Vida, I intended it to serve as a documentation of my travels. Over the years, I've written about adventures in Spain, San Francisco, France, Switzerland and most recently, Anguilla. _DSC0298 _DSC0296 _DSC0311 _DSC0369

This summer, there are fewer travels abroad on tap and more time will be spent on the road, headed East. After 8 years as a tried and true New Yorker, I'll be spending my weekends (and any other chance I get...) here for the next year. As excited as I am about the summertime (BBQ's, farm stands and fireflies), I'm just as excited about spending the off-season in a small town.

So you'll be seeing less posts about exotic, faraway places, and a few more about some low-key weekends spent in my new backayard... _DSC0358

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Beach Bev

Drink on the beach

One of my favorite things about summer are the cocktails! Nothing like a refreshing, icy bev on a hot day. I love this article about the 5 best beach cocktails to batch and bring with. Quick tips include pre-mixing your drink of choice in a themros and packing your cooler with ice packs to keep your drink perfectly chilled. I'll be trying out the Grapefruit Rosemary Mojito, hopefully this weekend!

Monday, June 4, 2012

Sponsored Post: Sorting With Style


Let's be honest. Most office supplies are just plain boring. As a designer (and lover of all things pretty...), I'm all about making things look as beautiful as possible.



Recently I was able to take my work space to the next level with some help from my friends at Sorting With Style. These heart shaped paper clips are functional and sweet. Elle Woods would be proud!


Best part is, this paper clip holder blends right in with my Laduree boxes (they double as storage).

Now, my office supplies are chic and personality packed. Thanks Sorting With Style! To make you workspace pop, visit

Laides in Waiting

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As I former waitress, I can attest that it is hard work. Which is why I loved Refinery 29's spotlight on some of the hardest working gals in the biz. The kicker? These chicks look damn good doing it!