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Author: jill-weinlein

Newport’s Newest Lido House Hotel

Walking into the newly opened Lido House, the first thing guests may notice about the Newport Cape Cod meets Newport Beach style resort is its signature scent. Asking the front desk about their aromatherapy, I learned the scent is called Golden Bamboo. It’s fresh, distinctive and pleasing to the senses. Three blocks from the beach and near the Newport harbor, the Lido House sits on the site of former City Hall. It’s privately owned by Bob Olsen and a group of local investors, and managed by Marriott Autograph Collection. The Lido House offers an on-site restaurant, spacious guest rooms...

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Actress and Winemaker Drew Barrymore

After receiving three bottles of wine from winemakers Drew Barrymore and Kris Kato from Carmel Road Winery, I wanted to learn more about this union of one of Hollywood’s most famous actresses and a winemaker in Northern California. Here are Six Facts I discovered while sipping their wines: Actress Drew Barrymore believes that some of the best memories are made around a table. She enjoys sitting with girlfriends on a Sunday, sharing a bottle of wine. As an avid traveler, she believes breaking bread and sipping a glass of fine wine is an ideal way to discover new cities and meet...

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10 Things To See & Do in Puerto Rico

During the month of October, 2017 Hurricane Maria tried to decimate Puerto Rico island. The level five hurricane ravaged certain cities more than others, causing widespread destruction and most of the residents without electricity and clean water.Recently I traveled to Puerto Rico to see what recovery efforts have been made in historic Old San Juan, Fajardo and Ponce areas on the island. I’m happy to report that  the airport has arrivals throughout the day, tourist sites are repaired, cruise ships are visiting San Juan daily, hotels are reopening refurbished or rebuilt and tourism is coming back to experience the...

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Omni La Costa Petal to Plate Specials

Checking into the Omni La Costa Spa, I met a friend for a Petal to Plate lunch at the Spa Cafe before my scheduled facial. The Petal to Plate Spa Day lunch menu offers healthy and light fare for guests to enjoy before and after their treatments. They also make signature Spa Bellinis and flavorful cocktails that includes a blood orange infused margarita to help one relax, unwind and enjoy their spa moment. While receiving a Rose and Neroli facial at the Omni La Costa Spa Day, my aesthetician applied all-natural skin care oils and products to reduce inflammation and...

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A Chat with Gloria Steinem

During a one-hour conversation about DACA with Gloria Steinem at Los Angeles City College, over one hundred students, faculty and Los Angelenos streamed into the Herb Albert Music Center to hear Steinem speak about equality and DACA with Samantha Ramirez-Herrera, a world renown expert in multicultural communication for the Latin and Hispanic communities.  Steinem a prolific writer, lecturer, editor and trailblazer of feminism discussed the repercussions from the recent decision to rescind the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. Initiated under President Barack Obama in 2012, DACA protects immigrants who arrived in the United States in their youth...

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Inside Award Season Gifting Lounges

Stepping into the Secret Room Events gifting lounge during award season is a kaleidoscope of colors. Invitations are sent to entertainment nominees before an award show. Movie stars arrive with their managers and publicists to receive and learn about exquisite jewelry, trendy skin and hair care products, clothing, stationary and organizers, children’s products, vacation destinations and gourmet food items. A select few journalists also get to participate in the gifting frenzy. Here’s a peek at some of the exclusive products presented and gifted to guests attending the event: To get camera ready for the Golden Globes, attendees received NUDESTIX gift...

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Exclusive See’s Candies Chocolate Tour

Meeting Dave Chapman Production Coordinator at See’s Candy Corporate office in Los Angeles, I “robed up” in a white See’s Candy jacket and donned a blue hair bonnet before he escorted me into one of California’s most beloved chocolate and candy companies. For over 28 years, Chapman has made sure that Mary See would be proud of her candy company. He told me: “We make the finest, freshest ingredients and still use Mary See’s recipes to make our delicious chocolates and candies.” It’s almost been 100 years since Mary See started making candy back in 1921. Today the privately...

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Tallest Skyscraper West of the Mississippi in Los Angeles

Sitting in a booth eating sushi at the Sora restaurant located on the 69th floor of the Wilshire Grand, I commented to my friend about the magnificent views of Los Angeles. Located inside the newly opened Wilshire Grand, this upscale, world-class and state-of-the-art 73-story high-rise, offers multiple dining options in the tallest building west of the Mississippi. Inside the office building is the InterContinental Hotel Los Angeles, with 889 guest rooms on the 31st to 68th floors. Everywhere you look are million-dollar views. The lobby on the first floor is not the registration area for the hotel; instead hotel...

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Magnificent Marin French Cheese

California is known for many contributions to the world, including cheese. Since 1865 the 700-acre Hicks Valley Ranch has provided fresh cow and goat milk cheese. Located in Sonoma, this cheese company was fortunately untouched by the nearby California fires. In 2011, Marin French Cheese was purchased by Rians, the respected French family of cheese producers. Rians also owns Laura Chenel’s Chèvre in neighboring Sonoma County. What makes Marin French Cheese extra special is a blend of milk from three dairy breeds: Jersey, Guernsey and Holstein. These cows live less than 15 miles from the Marin French Cheese company...

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The Elegance and Essence of Bees

Inside the Hotel Bel Air Spa, I met fascinating urban beekeeper Paul Hekimian during a Valmont beauty event. Valmont has been a pioneer in the world of luxury cosmetics for over 30 years. The Swiss skin care company draws inspiration from the latest scientific research to restore and repair skin. In addition to  using Switzerland’s pure natural resources, including glacial spring water and essential plant extracts grown in Valmont’s own conservatory in the Swiss Alps, they are now using beneficial ingredients made from bees. Hekimian is the Director of HoneyLove, an organization with a mission to protect the honeybees by...

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The Most Luxurious Rental in Los Angeles

Oh the parties you will have at the sprawling four-bedroom, ten-bathroom penthouse that sits atop downtown Los Angeles’ luxury LEVEL high-rise on the 34th and 35th floors. Professionally designed by Robert Bailey, you and your guests will gaze out the 13-ft floor to ceiling windows offering 360-degree views of Los Angeles and beyond. From the minute you exit the security elevator on the 34th floor into the elegant entry, one notices the opulent natural limestone flooring that continues through the kitchen, living and dining areas, as well as outdoor terraces. Warm woods include walnut, ash, and oak. The expansive window walls...

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Christmas Harry Potter Style at Universal Studios Hollywood

Christmas has arrived at “The Wizarding World of Harry Potter,” inside Universal Studios Hollywood.  As night falls, Hogemeade Village sparkles with snow capped roofs and storefronts are decorated with holiday garland and decorations. The Hogwarts Castle is lit with color illuminating Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry during designated times. The awe-inspiring light projection show is choreographed to the musical arrangement from the Harry Potter movies.Walking down the cobblestone streets, I felt as if I traveled to the historic British land of Harry Potter’s world. Karen Irwin, President & COO, Universal Studios Hollywood wanted her team to create an interactive and “exciting...

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