Google+

Category: Dining

Four Seasons Westlake: So Near, Yet So Far From LA

The Southern California Four Seasons Westlake is a great halfway spot between Los Angeles and Santa Barbara. From Los Angeles it’s about a 40-minute drive north, if you time the traffic right. Owner billionaire American businessman and philanthropist David Murdock built the resort was after losing his mother and later his wife Gabriele to cancer. Murdock focused on helping researchers find a cure for the disease, while extending life through wellness and nutrition. He  established the Dole Nutrition Institute, and in 2006 opened the California Health and Longevity Institute and Four Seasons Westlake. Walking inside, one feels as if they...

Read More

Yountville: California’s Culinary Capital

Strolling along the sidewalks of Yountville, one soon notices this is the culinary capital of Napa Valley. The 1.5-mile-long town offers more Michelin stars per capita than any other destination in California. The restaurants of esteemed celebrity chefs Michael Chiarello, Philippe Jeanty, Thomas Keller and Richard Reddington have attracted an international foodie crowd for years.  Three Michelin stars have been awarded to The French Laundry and one star for Bouchon, Bistro Jeanty and Redd. What I discovered is that not only is Michael Chiarello a chef, sustainable farmer, vintner and television host, his popular Italian restaurant Bottega offers bold Italian flavors...

Read More

Las Vegas Winning Meal at Mandarin Oriental

After winning at the roulette table at the ARIA Resort & Casino, my friend and I celebrated at the nearby Mandarin Oriental Hotel with a decadent lunch at MOzen Bistro before flying back to LA. Walking into the Mandarin Oriental Las Vegas, we immediately noticed a pleasing aroma of citrus tea notes, instead of cigarette smoke. The purifying air system filters the essence of orange, tea and cypress through the lobby and corridors of guest room floors. We learned the older hotels in Las Vegas just don’t have the updated air purifiers. Since the 47 stories high Mandarin Oriental...

Read More

Rooftop Dining Al Fresco

With longer days and the weather finally warming up, travelers all across the country are eagerly gearing up for al fresco dining and rooftop season. Whether you’re looking for the best spot to soak up the sun away from the chaos of the city below or just want to enjoy a trendy cocktail or seasonal dish in the fresh spring air while visiting NYC, the following outdoor hotspots have you covered. Weather dependent rooftops… Pod 39 Rooftop Perched 17 floors high, the top of the Pod 39 Hotel reveals a seasonal rooftop oasis. With crawling ivy, potted plants, and panoramic views of the...

Read More

Supermodel Cindy Crawford’s Casa Umami Burger

Back in 2001 I interviewed Jenny Crawford Malouf, the mother of supermodel, fashion icon and businesswoman Cindy Crawford. Known as part of the “Silver Foxes,” a group of celebrity parents, Malouf along with Sal Pacino (Al Pacino’s father) and Nikki Robbins (motivational speaker Tony Robbins’ mother) worked together on a few “Silver Foxes” lifestyle videos. Malouf shared with me how Cindy rose to be one of the highest paid models in the world. Born and raised in DeKalb, Illinois, her first professional cover on a magazine was during her junior year in high school. Soon after she competed for the Elite Model...

Read More

Gaby Brasserie Française

I love so much that is French. The food, the wine, the language, the cities. Pretty much everything. So last year, when I was invited to the first New York baguette competition at the Sofitel, I discovered more than some magnificent baguettes. Turned out that the stylish, French-accented midtown hotel housed a handsome restaurant called Gaby Brasserie Française, named for a Parisian model who found her milieu in 1920s. The brasserie setting was created by Paris-based interior designer Pierre-Yves Rochon, and the place offered continuous service from 6 a.m. to 1 a.m. daily. Given those long hours, I meant...

Read More

The Leopard at des Artistes: Superb Food and Nostalgia

Sometimes a meal is served with something extra that makes it truly memorable. During a recent visit to The Leopard at des Artistes, not only was my dinner superb from start to finish, it was accompanied with a warm glow of nostalgia. The restaurant is located in the former Café des Artistes, which before it closed in 2009, was one of my favorite places for glamorous atmosphere and lovely food. Established in 1917, Café des Artistes was a stylish icon, famous for the saucy Howard Chandler Christy murals and extravagant floral arrangements. Today, I’m happy to say, Christy’s nymphs still...

Read More

Gogi’s Restaurant in Jacksonville, Oregon

During October of 2008, I had the pleasure of discovering Gogi’s Restaurant in Jacksonville, Oregon, while on a trip with my late husband Norm and dear friend Brenda Hill. It is almost ten years later and Gogi’s is still thriving. Two brothers, chef Gabriel Murphy who runs the kitchen and Jonoah Murphy who runs the front of the house including the bar, own this successful establishment that continues to please its customers. Gogi’s is located at the foot of the lovely Britt Gardens. The Murphy brothers pride themselves on using local organic products whenever possible, with much of it coming...

Read More

Luxury and History: Two Historic Seaside Hotels

Oceanfront hotels are a dime a dozen along the East Coast seaboard, but it’s a real treat to find two that have survived decades and still exist as stunning destinations. Their unique stories are woven into a tapestry of Southern charm and hospitality. I recently had the opportunity to visit the King and Prince Beach & Golf Resort located on St. Simons Island, GA, and The Casa Marina Hotel in Jacksonville, FL. Both have fascinating histories and offer unique oceanfront experiences. The King and Prince Beach & Golf Resort This legendary hotel, a member of the National Register of Historic Places and a member of the prestigious Historic Hotels of America, is located on one of the barrier islands that make up Georgia’s coast. It first opened in 1935 as a seaside dance club. Six years later, the main hotel building opened to the public as the King and Prince Hotel. During World War II, the hotel served as a naval coast-watching and training facility. The center of radar operations was housed at the King and Prince, which also provided officers’ quarters and classrooms. The bar at the hotel was an after-hours gathering spot for soldiers, their wives and members of the local Civil Air Patrol. The hotel’s current restaurant “Echo” pays tribute to the hotel’s crucial part in the island’s naval history. As radar sent its electromagnetic waves...

Read More

Luxury Boutique V Palm Springs Resort

No one would every guess that the new luxury boutique V Palm Springs resort was once a budget Travelodge. A couple of Los Angeles celebrity criminal attorneys purchased the property and gave it a $15 million dollar makeover. What used to be a parking lot, is now the 1960s style mid-century lobby with an iconic butterfly roof. Cruiser bikes with baskets await guests next to a large glass front door to hop on and explore downtown Palm Springs along designated bike paths. Inside the lobby, staff members are eager to please guests at this brand new property because competition...

Read More

Pin It on Pinterest