Archive for the ‘Destinations’ Category

#Nantucket Moments | Sunday Flashback | Poem Reprinted from My Facebook Post |

Sunday, November 8, 2015
Debbi DiMaggio

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Postcards from Nantucket

Long winding driveways paved with white seashells
Sea of Green
Lush landscapes like Jurassic Park

Silver Gray rooftops peak above the tree line

Driftwood Fences
Sandy Feet
American Flags
The Harbour
The Boats
The Yachts
Street Benches
And Parks

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Grab a copy of Yesterday’s Island, Today’s Nantucket for a list of all the things you can do on this small, quaint island

Flip flops, baskets and bikes
Runners and joggers, walkers and talkers

Jeeps and Land Rovers, Range Rovers and Mini’s whiz by on Union and Cliff Road to and from Town for coffee, for lunch, to visit Daryia Salon for a pedi, mani or blow out for an afternoon garden party or beach wedding.

Charming names, cute Lanes

Each home is marked by a boulder or rock with a numbered address or a name

Don’t Rock The Boat
Don’t Give Up The Ship
Hunky Dorey
Bottoms Up

What is the story behind each name?

And then there are the stores without names like
167 and 50 Cliff Road which, as locals know, mean the best fish market on the island on Hummock Road and Something Natural which is marked by a boulder and a mail box.

“Fresh” is the key word here on the island. Fresh lobster, fresh salmon, freshly baked Portuguese bread and the best, and yes, fresh yellow and white sweet corn. We ate fresh corn every night.

Whether you visit Nantucket by Sea, by Bike or by Air there is really so much to do especially to dine on the incredible fare. But reservations are a must. Not only do the popular homes rent out one year in advance but restaurants are booked well before the summer season has begun.

The question you will have to answer when choosing your “on island” retreat is
where will you slumber?

An inn or resort a home or an estate with a pool or a court or a short walk to town. Will you rent a car, a jeep, a bike or Vespa? Will you ferry or fly by air, if you dare.

Tom Nevers, Sconset, Dionis, Cliffside, Surfside, Madaket, Brant Point, Cisco or Town.

So much to share. So I’m off yet again on bike ride #2. My early afternoon jaunt to explore so much more

Loving life in Nantucket.

XOXO!

And of course I’m still attached to my work…by phone, text and email. But a lovely venue indeed.  You’ve got questions? I’ve got answers. Where to stay, where to eat or where to play. Just ask.

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I simply cannot wait to return! XOXO!

[Read More..]

the apple icon now mocks me // the silence is deafening

Sunday, November 1, 2015
Debbi DiMaggio

Slamming doors

replaced dead silence.  The silence is deafening.

A mother’s love of her cub.

The Apple icon now mocks me. [Read More..]

My Story // Contained Beauty: Photographs, Reflections and Swimming Pools // The Empty Nest

Thursday, September 20, 2012
Debbi DiMaggio

My Story

This is my story as to how Contained Beauty came to be…

As you know, my name is Debbi DiMaggio. I am Midge and Vince’s daughter, Michael’s sister, Adam’s wife, a mother of two amazing children, Bianca and Chase, a Realtor, an avid volunteer and now an author.

Reflections

The first question I am asked most frequently is just how Contained Beauty came to be and what does the title mean. Contained Beauty: Photographs, Reflections & Swimming Pools.

In my book, the word “Reflections” refers to both, the reflections in a swimming pool and the reflections in my life.

Swimming Pools are Contained. For me, they are a place of beauty and comfort. Throughout the journey and putting this book together, I realized that I was like a swimming pool. I was living contained trying to keep a tight hold on my life and everything in it.

If you know me well, then you will know that when I get an idea I have to follow through with it or it will stay with me, keep me up at night and will occupy my mind until I do something about it.

A coffee table book about swimming pools was one of those ideas that kept repeating. I could picture my coffee-table book in hotels and resorts around the world and in people’s homes and in all of my real estate listings.

It wasn’t until Bianca’s junior year in high school, when she was busy considering colleges, and Chase was becoming more independent with friends, sports and school when things started to change… I felt a void, similar to that, of an empty swimming pool.

Empty Nest

As they got busier in their own lives, all I could see was an empty nest in my future. I wasn’t prepared for what was to come and the emotions I would feel. It was during this time I began searching. I needed a project to move me forward. I just kept thinking, we were once a family of four, soon to be a family of three. It was really, all too overwhelming. ( What I experienced was very different than what I had understood about the Empty Nest. My sadness and Empty Nest feelings did not begin when my last child left, but occurred when Bianca, my first child left, realizing that soon our son Chase and all of his friends would be gone too. )

One evening at a high school senior going away party a father said, “it’s not like she is going off to war”. As crazy as it sounded, his comment really put things into perspective and actually made me stop and think.

However, I was still reminiscing. I was still sad.  I spent time going back through our family photo albums, assembling a collection of meaningful photographs and creating a memory book for Bianca.

As I pulled together photographs of family, friends and Bianca’s travels, I wrote captions, sharing words that would hopefully help her with her transition to college and what she meant to me. The captions were as much for me as they were (hopefully) for her.

I titled it, “What to Share with Your Senior Before they Leave for College.” I wrote things like… I love you, we are just a phone call away, try new things, get involved.  I cried as I put the book together.

When you are one less in the household, time opens up. One early morning, after Bianca had left for college, I began to re-read and write in my personal journal.

I had been adding to my journal over the years when I was inspired. I tend to write in the morning before my family gets up, and when the house is quiet and my mind is clear. And I love to write when I travel.

Over the years I have been assembling a “believe” handbook, filled with my inspirational words of wisdom. It is something I hoped to share with my children and their friends, and to inspire others who might read it.

Swimming Pools

Also, you may ask – Why a coffee table book on swimming pools?

Swimming pools inspire me. When sitting next to a swimming pool I feel renewed and peaceful and open to new possibilities. And it is also a place where I find balance.

Looking at water helps me clear my mind and allows new ideas to seep in.

When I started this project I didn’t realize just how contained I was living. Just like a swimming pool.  I was living my life in the shallow end of the pool but knew there was so much more. As I tried to push out to the deep end, it was challenging.  In order to do that, I had to release the boundaries that I was living within.

It was then that I began to notice that the people around me were also doing the same thing. I started seeing life and people differently.

It was then when I decided that I had to finish my book, for all of us who need to remove our boundaries, follow our own path and loosen the control we try so hard to keep.

Emotions would follow, as I reflected…

In writing this book, I learned and understood that for myself it is difficult to really open up, and to deal with sadness and disappointment. I was surprised to find the healing that would transpire through my willingness to be open and to allow myself to feel.

I do understand, so much more now, that I try to control life in an attempt to keep everything contained in a neat, tidy, little box.  And when I don’t find success, I get frustrated and sad.

I have identified that when I do this, I really don’t have control at all.  But, I am still a work in progress.  I believe my journey has really just begun. I have IDENTIFIED something I want to change.  “Identify” is the key word.

One of the passages in my book says, when you are working on your dreams and goals, that you must first IDENTIFY just what those dreams and goals are. That is the first step towards achieving your goals and making your dreams come true.  I’m living my writing now.

Visual Inspiration

I also am a very visual person. I memorize information visually, whether a home, a hotel or a book. I even recall my conversations, visually.

Images speak to me, and stick with me. I created Contained Beauty for others who might do the same.

Contained Beauty is a visual journey. It is a blend of stunning photographs from my favorite places around the world interlaced with my personal journal writings.

I created my book so you could travel from the comfort and ease of your own space, while being inspired through images and words.

Giving Back

Helping others is a value that is deep in my heart. I believe so strongly in giving back that the proceeds of Contained Beauty will be donated to the George Mark Children’s House.

George Mark Children’s House supports and provides medical care for children with life-limiting illnesses and their families living with such challenging circumstances.

It is a place of healing and a mission that tugs at my heartstrings.

Gratitude

I want to take a few moments to thank the many people who have made my Contained Beauty journey complete.  First and foremost, my editor, photographer and dear friend, Jennifer Fox. Without her Virgo organizational skills and extreme follow up, patience and desire to make sure I followed my dream to fruition, this book would not be possible.

Toula Victor, my marketing coordinator and organizer who continued to smile as we worked on my many lists and lists and lists.

Rob Bond, my publisher who said it was possible and introduced me to PGW Distributors, Four Colour Printers and the book publishing business.

To all the photographers, property owners and models who worked on this project from their hearts, for George Mark.

Angie, my graphic artist, who dealt with the perfectionist in me as she endured my numerous edits.

And to Michelle Bakken Whitaker, an amazing designer, who brought in her expertise, in the nick of time, just before Contained Beauty went to press.

My husband Adam, my rock, for his love and support, and to my amazing children, Bianca and Chase, who are my inspiration and my life.

Jennifer’s daughters, Jessica and Chelsea who traveled with Jennifer and I and acted as my mini assistants. To Steve, their dad, Jennifer’s husband, for his patience and understanding as we spent hours and hours on the book.

And a huge thanks and gratitude to my Believers, including Jennifer and Steve Fox; Kathy Hull, Visionary of the George Mark Children’s House; Rasheed Alli of X2Media; Sherry Paterra, my mentor; my new friends, Linda and Bruce Titus; our real estate partners and friends, Ed and Kathy Krafchow; my longtime, dear friend, Mindy Sun; and of course, my loving husband, Adam and my parents who have supported me throughout my life and allowed me to change my career as many times as I changed my mind. And to all of you…

In Closing

I now understand that I was living with constraints, just as a swimming pool, with restrictive borders, that slowed me from living my dreams. I put up boundaries because of my own doubts and fears.  I stopped short of doing for myself as it always is much easier for me to do for, and to believe in, my children and in others…

Contained Beauty is for me and for you.  It is a reminder for you too, to let go of what holds you back and to find your passion and follow your dreams.

Believe in yourself, seek inspiration and keep going even when things are less than perfect.

And should you purchase a copy of Contained Beauty, The George Mark Children’s House thanks you, just as I do. Please go to Barnes and Noble.com Amazon.com or call your local book store and ask them to order you a copy. Contained Beauty can also be purchased at Rue Atelier Boutique on College Avenue.

If you would like more information on the George Mark House, please go to George Mark.org.

Thank you!  XOXO!!

Debbi

DebbiDiMaggioPR

For Author Events or Book Signings, please contact Jennifer  Jenn-Fox.com

Imagine. Believe. Visualize. Dream. Achieve.

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!

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