Archive for the ‘Destinations’ Category

going south for the summer // city, beach or suburbs // los angeles

Saturday, July 28, 2012
Debbi DiMaggio

Going South for the Summer? Looking for a weekend get-a-way before summer comes to an end?

Sometimes I like to get in my car and just drive.  Poor cell reception is a good thing, sometimes.  Listen to music or just enjoy the silence and point your car south, on the straight road ahead – it’s just about a 5 ½ hour drive.  Of course, depending on if you stop or not.  I actually enjoy the trip, it gives me time to clear my head and just be.  (If I do stop, it’s Harris Ranch for lunch.)

City, Beach or the Suburbs – It’s up to you – there are so many neighborhoods to choose from.

Stay:  Beverly Wilshire, Four Seasons – Location, Location, Location, if you love to shop and people watch.  We were in town for our son’s LAX tournament — Tinsel Town Throw Down.  July is birthday month for our son, Chase and our daughter Bianca, myself, as well as my dad’s birthday and our wedding anniversary.  The celebrations are non stop in July!

Shop:  Rodeo Drive

One of the windows at Tiffany’s on Rodeo Drive

Stay, Spa, Sun or Swim at the Four Season’s BW Hotel – on the weekends they have a DJ spinning tunes poolside.  The Spa is definitely one of the most luxurious.

 

Sip @ Nic’s Beverly Hills – step inside the VodBox – The Vodka Hostess leads you a full- length faux fur and Russian style hat. The temperature drops to a chilly 28 degrees F.

Dine beneath the stars @ Via Alloro  (recent sighting Matthew Modine) or Caffe Roma – al fresco dining at it’s best.

Chase & Adam @ Caffe Roma

Destination: Beverly Hills / West Hollywood

Stay:  L’Ermitage Beverly Hills – Sophisticated and private… And I love the rooftop pool!

Shop Robertson – many boutiques to choose from, and Kitson is always one of the busiest

Indulge:  Book a mani pedi @ Bellacures  – I had the best pedicure ever – make sure to ask for the works: Scrub, Mask, Moisturize, Massage & Polish — A creature of habit, I tend to stick with what I love, so I always get the French Pedicure.

People Watch:  @ the Ivy, one of LA’s hottest lunch spots for celebrity sightings – call ahead to make a reservation and be sure to ask for a table on the patio – French, floral and comfortable.

After shopping all day a relaxing dinner at Eveleigh is just what you need – a very hip indoor-outdoor hot spot where cowboy chic meets restoration hardware. You’ll have to just see for yourself.  I guarantee.  It’s super cool!

 

Roasted Hot Peppers, One of my Favorites on the Menu

WeHo:  Fun in West Hollywood

Stay:  The Chamberlain in the heart of West Hollywood – a chic and glamorous neighborhood hotel – and my favorite rooftop pool in the City with views of Sunset Blvd.   They keep the pool heated to 90 degrees, my preferred temperature!

 featured in my four-colour, hardcover coffee-table book soon to be released

contained beauty: photographs, reflections, swimming pools by debbi dimaggio

Take in a show & dance @ the Roxy on Sunset

Wine & Dine @ one of the many outside restaurants on Sunset Plaza reminiscent of the South of France.

Dine or Sip @ Katana robata & sushi bar – Enjoy a pre dinner cocktail from the outdoor lounge overlooking Sunset Blvd

Sip @ Chateau Marmont – a cool Hollywood hangout

Shop or Catch a movie @ the Grove

Recent sightings – David Spade and Jennifer Hudson

 

For a More Beachy Experience….head West to Santa Monica

Shop the Third Street Promenade @ other funky and chic Santa Monica shops

Dine @ Tar & Roses

Sip poolside @ the Viceroy Santa Monica – also featured in contained beauty.

Get your heart pumping atop the Ferris Wheel on the Santa Monica Pier

 

Take a Drive up the PCH to Malibu

Stay:  Malibu Beach Inn

Swim, Surf or Sun:  All along the West Coast from Malibu to Redondo Beach

Shop and Star-Gaze @ the Malibu Country Mart

The James Perse Boutique

Paparazzi sighting… Rachael Zoe wearing one of her boho chic maxi dresses and signature floppy hats.

Dine & Wine:  Under the stars and the moon @ Duke’s Malibu or Moonshadows

Get Inspired @ one of the many beautiful Beaches* along the PCH or visit  The Getty Villa or the Getty Museum.

There is always so much to discover.

XOXO!

Debbi

*Beaches To Note: From South to North

·      Manhattan or Hermosa

·      Santa Monica near Shutters on the Beach

·      Santa Monica at PCH

·      Malibu Pier across the street from the Malibu Country Mart

·      Zuma Beach

·      Paradise Cove Beach & Restaurant modeled after the South of France

Thanks for stopping by!

summer series // seattle, washington

Tuesday, June 26, 2012
Debbi DiMaggio

Travel Log: Summer Series 2012
Seattle, Washington

When I travel to a new place, I bring my sense of wonder with me. I look for things to discover and wait to be inspired. I prefer to get to know a city in just four days and three nights.

If you are considering heading north to SEATTLE, here are a few of my highlights.

STAY
Fairmont Olympic Hotel
The Fairmont is a Traditional hotel with stunning Georgian architecture. My favorite feature is the indoor heated pool and spa. (I always try to stay at a hotel with a pool.)

W Hotel – Hip and Swanky
A favorite spot for locals and tourists after work or at play.

Four Seasons Hotel
Perched above the Puget Sound in a beautiful modern high rise. Four Seasons service has never been anything less than superior; consistent, tried and true.

PLAY
By Air, Land or Sea

Ferry

A great way to see the city surrounded by water:  All Sight Seeing Tours

Seaplane
Seattle Seaplanes offers charter flights and tours to Mount Rainier, Mount St. Helens, the San Juan Islands and other locations throughout the Pacific Northwest.  Seattle Seaplanes

Walking Tour
The World’s Greatest Walking Tour – The Seattle Walking Tour

MUST

Stroll Pike Place Market


The Market is filled with beautiful flowers and fresh vegetables. Watch the butchers playing catch with large, slippery salmon as they throw the fish over the heads of wide-eyed tourists. Indulge in a sampling of fresh, brightly colored fruit or something sweet from one of the many bakeries.  And don’t forget to stop by the original Starbucks. It is certainly true, there is a Starbucks on every corner.  PIKE PLACE MARKET

EAT
Try any one of the Tom Douglas restaurants for lunch or dinner. Etta’s, Lola’s and Dahlia Lounge to name a few… each with their own style and cultural flair.

Queen City Grill
A local favorite in Belltown – Old school, comfortable and friendly. Sit and chat with the locals at the bar or enjoy a private booth.

El Gaucho

Every time I visit El Gaucho  I see Jim Carey and Cameron Diaz spinning around the dance floor right out of a scene from the movie, “Mask.” Dimly lit, piano being played in the background while chefs and waiters prepare various dishes table side from Caesar salad to flaming kabobs or bananas foster. It’s an interactive dining experience.

SIP
You’ll notice that many restaurants, whether serving breakfast, lunch or dinner each have a bar and serve both wine and spirits. My first guess was because of the colder temperatures. But, during the summer, days go on and on… and it does actually warm up. I could not believe how light it was at 9:00 at night! Bars and restaurants are plentiful. Sip your favorite beverage while overlooking the Puget Sound or at one of the many restaurants located on one of the quintessential alleyways above Pike Place Market.

INSPIRE

Charities define a city’s heart. You can’t walk around Seattle without seeing the “working man” sculpture. The Seattle Art Museum, known to locals as SAM, has an extensive collection of art and rotating traveling shows. A quick peak, for an hour or so, allows me just enough time to see things with a new perspective.

Isn’t that what makes traveling worth the effort?

My last piece of advice… Don’t forget your passport.

Canada is just a few hour drive, away.

There is always so much to discover!

XOXO!!  Debbi

 Alaska Air: A quick flight from Oakland to Seattle

           Video Training w/Natalie Rees & Sid Lee                                                        Jenn and Debbi               

Next Weekend

Summer Series // Beverly Hills

 LAX Tournament in LA // Tinsel Town Throwdown!

mirrors of infinity // contained beauty

Sunday, March 25, 2012
Debbi DiMaggio

Coral Casino Beach and Cabana Club –  Santa Barbara, CA 

The Carneros Inn, Napa Valley at Sunrise

Montecito, CA – A Private Residence

I am searching the world for stunning images of swimming pools for a 10 x 12, four color coffee table book titled CONTAINED BEAUTY.

If you are a photographer, landscape architect or property owner who might be inspired to be a part of this project, please reach out to us:

Author / Art Director / Visionary:   Debbi DiMaggio   debbidimaggio@gmail.com

  Editor:   Jennifer Fox   jenn@jenn-fox.com 

Marketing & Media Director:   Toula Victor   victor.toula@gmail.com

Publisher:   Robert Bond – Half Full Press

Graphics:  Angie Hinh

Printer:   Four Colour Print Group

Charity:   George Mark House   www.georgemark.org

Contained Beauty Contributers & Partners:  

X2Media – Corina Botofan and Rasheed Alli

Sherry Paterra – Debbi’s Mentor

We have ONE month to meet our publisher’s deadline!

With appreciation and gratitude,

 Debbi DiMaggio

Writer,  Community Ambassador, Philanthropist, Realtor

XOXO! 

 

Images by Jenn Fox

 

Making Dreams Come True! XOXO!

New Year’s Resolutions Under Way // Vail, Colorado USA

Friday, March 2, 2012
Debbi DiMaggio

Below was my post on the Piedmont Patch in January.  I am happy to say my New Year’s Resolutions are underway!

Bianca and I spent the weekend together in Vail and Boulder, Colorado.  A beautiful state.

Truly breathtaking.

Evacuation Back Side, Vail, CO – the sun was shining bright and the sky was blue, but the winds were blowing at the top!  a breezy 80 MPH – it was incredibly scary!   i didn’t know how we’d get back.   i had the idea that i would fake a broken leg, as i didn’t want to get back on that lift.   a few skiiers who didn’t want to wait in this long line, opted to hike out.   you can see the top of the mountain in this photo.  they had to hike to the very top to get out.   as we finally made it to the top in the chair lift, 45 minutes later, they were still hiking.

These photos were taken by me on my iphone while skiing – it was just so beautiful at every turn. 

 Bianca and Daddy @ Sugar Bowl

Bianca

18 Months, now 18 Years

Previous Post:

Last night I hosted a dinner party with my husband, our last party to round out the holiday season and to welcome in the New Year. We enjoyed Adam’s famous pasta and shared our resolutions.

Just one morning into the New Year, as I write this, my family still sound asleep knowing they have one last day of vacation before the hectic pace of life propels us … I realize it is time. It is time to take down holiday decorations and prepare for what is next, which is 2012.

Today marks another new day, although more significant and emphasized by the culmination of parties, parades, fireworks, gatherings and conversations of New Year’s Resolutions. However, I prefer to use the word goals in place of resolutions. Resolutions made oftentimes end up as empty promises, like all of those new faces who show up at the gym to work out “more often.”

I learned many years ago that goals can be set at any time and re-examined throughout the year. Since becoming an owner/partner and marketing director at Highland Partners, I continue to examine my goals quite often. You do not have to be in business, or a director or coach, to do this. You can simply sit down with your children, a colleague or your spouse and review one another’s goals together. Whether I am coaching or sharing, I learn so much through our exchange. Each conversation reminds and reinforces my own goals, and enlightens me to new ones I hadn’t even thought of. A buddy system of sorts.

Here are a few of my goals for 2012:

Reinforce Past Goals

Help HP Agents with Their Business Plans

Exercise Weekly with Friends

Take Walks with My Husband and Partner

Complete and Publish My Book

Help More Families / Sell More Homes

Visit Aspen and Vail ( My daughter is at CU Boulder )

Learn Something New

Create Photo Books using iPhoto

Inspire My Children

Simplify: Garage, Basement and Closets

Expand Reach and Support of My Favorite Charities

Host More Dinner Parties ( Adam needs to be on board with that one, since I don’t cook! )

Plan and Take a One-on-One Weekend Get-Away with Each Member of My Family

Celebrate Adam’s Big Birthday

and

Our 20 Year Anniversary

Dance More!

And, of course, this goes without saying… Eat Healthier, Spend More Time with Family and World Peace.

What are your goals for 2012? I’d love to hear them, and am sure others would, too.

Cheers to a Happy and Healthy 2012! May all of your dreams and goals be achieved.

There is always so much to accomplish…

XOXO! Debbi

holiday traditions // latin american style

Friday, December 23, 2011
Debbi DiMaggio

Discoveries by Debbi DiMaggio

This year the holiday season began for me at a Williams-Sonoma Cooking Class just a few weeks before Christmas.

Our view from the top floor of Williams-Sonoma on Union Square at Christmas

Learning about other cultures fascinates me. I am naturally drawn to Caribbean and Mediterranean cultures… the passion, food and music. So, when the co-owner of Pica Pica Maize Kitchen invited me to experience Venezuelan Christmas traditions, I said, “of course!”

 

First, I went to a Hallaca cooking class at Williams-Sonoma, Union Square. From my perspective, the Hallaca is a lot like the Spanish tamale. I can see why families would take days to make them… very involved. Adriana Lopez, chef and co-owner, and her crew from Pica Pica made it easy. We rolled the maize, stacked the mixture, and wrapped and tied them in the leaves.

A little lesson: In Venezuelan cuisine, a Hallaca (“hayaca”) typically involves a mixture of meat (we had chicken) capers, sweet raisins and zesty olives wrapped in maize (cornmeal dough), bound with string within plantain leaves, and boiled afterwards, very tasty.

You can order them NOW online at www.picapicakitchen.com

 

Then I was invited to the Oxbow Public Market in Napa for “Parranda 2011.”  (photo above).  I experienced more great food from Pica Pica, and tasted unique wines from South America by Taste Vino ( www.taste-vino.com ), but the best part was what followed… line dancing with our new friends from Pica Pica. Everyone dancing knew the words and dance steps, song after song. A little secret about myself…many do not know, but I listen to Latin and Hispanic music when driving in my car. No, I don’t understand the lyrics, but I love the beat. I enjoy it so much it seems that I must understand the words, it fills my soul and makes me smile.

Another lesson: Parranda is a musical form from the coastal area of Venezuela where the tambora (drum) becomes the main accompanying instrument. Parrandas are musical festivities during the Christmas season holiday.

I have to admit that after trying the various items on the menu, one of my TOPS is the Yucca fries (you can order them plain or with garlic). They alone are worth making the drive; whether to Pica Pica Maize Kitchen in San Francisco on Valencia Street or at Oxbow Napa.

Next on my list, Flamenco dance lessons with Adriana… There is always more to discover!

 Feliz Navidad     Merry Christmas     Happy 2012!

XOXO!

Debbi

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