Friday Five

The Friday Five: Top links to lead you into the weekend: 

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1. Talia Kleinplatz is my soulmate, she just doesn't know it yet. Check out her site Two for the Bar and follow along as she indulges in her love of the drink. 

2. The summer edition of Merry Mag was released this week! Full of inspiring content from, and curated by, editor Melissa DiRenzo of The Sweet Escape, this online magazine is full of inspiration to fulfill your ultimate summer - from DIY projects, entertaining tips, recipes and more, this handmade guide has everything you need. 

3. I need to start a capsule closet. Both Coco & Vera and Style Bee have me convinced! 

4. I'll be in New York next week and staying in the Lower East Side, and since it's one of the few neighbourhoods I haven't explored yet, this guide on The Tig is going to be my bible for the week. 

5. Next Sunday is Father's Day and all this week I've seen many gift guides recommending what to buy for dad. I'm not able to celebrate this day with my dad because I lost him to cancer five years ago, but I'm still able to honour his memory. His favourite place (and mine, too) was our family cottage, of which I shared photos on my blog previously here and will be on my mind more than usual this weekend, I'm sure. Another memory I have of my father is his love of music. I made a playlist of his favourite songs and shared them in this post last October - my dad loved sharing music and the best way I can honour his memory is to further share his favourite songs with others.  

Stay Here: The Maritime Hotel

I'll be back in New York next week and I'm really excited about the hotel I'll be staying at: The Ludlow. The Ludlow hotel, situated in the Lower East Side, is another project by hotelier and designer Sean Macpherson. I've stayed at two of his other hotels and as far as I'm concerned, there is no greater experience you can get from a boutique hotel in NYC. You can read about my stay at The Marlton hotel last year here, and it occurred to me that I never shared my pics from my stay at The Maritime when I was there earlier this year, which is what I would like to share with you now. 

As the name of the hotel suggests, there is a maritime theme about this hotel. The rooms are designed to look like cabins on a ship, complete with portholes for windows (albeit, and thankfully, oversized portholes). 

The bathrooms were decked out in marble countertops, a common feature in Macpherson hotel rooms, complete with luxury toiletries.  

My favourite area of the hotel was the bar/lounge area (the Cabana). There was a cozy "indoor" area that made you feel like you were on a steam ship, and a heated "outdoor" area that mimicked a garden patio. I spent a couple of nights sitting out here with my laptop finishing up posts for my most recent One Room Challenge. The complimentary wine and cheese was a nice bonus! 

There isn't a single area of this hotel where the decorating decisions were overlooked, as evidenced by the workout room. Helloooo Martinique Wallpaper à la the Beverley Hills Hotel. I was almost inspired to workout. (I said almost.) 

This was my first time staying in Chelsea so I walked the entire length of the High Line. It was April so not a whole lot was in bloom but it was still incredible. 

Another benefit of The Maritime hotel? IT'S RIGHT ACROSS FROM THE CHELSEA MARKET. Omigod have you ever been to the Chelsea Market? It is one of the greatest indoor food halls in the world, featuring a plethora of mouthwatering dishes across many different food categories and cultures. 

I'm so excited to stay at my third Sean Macpherson hotel next week and to explore a neighbourhood I haven't visited yet! 

Stay Here: The Marlton Hotel

I was in New York last week and had the pleasure of staying at the most beautiful boutique hotel I've ever been to. The Marlton Hotel, built in 1900, home to artists, actors and other creatives, is located in Greenwich Village and was restored by designer Sean MacPherson in 2012. The attention to detail is impeccable. The moulding, the floors, the furniture, the fixtures, the colours - all simply stunning. I spent my first hour in the room taking photos from every angle. The hotel is breathtaking. I'll let the photos do the rest of the talking. 

If you're ever in NYC and need a hotel recommendation, I think you know what my advice is.  :) 

Many thanks go out to Lindsay Souza - it was through this post on her blog The Pursuit of Style that I first learned of The Marlton and it's greatness. I hope that my post will inspire another reader to visit this gorgeous hotel. 

Big Lights Will Inspire You (NYC)

Since I'm flying to New York today, it only seems appropriate that I write about the city. And since I still haven't written about my last visit there, I may as well finally share my experiences and photos from that trip. I was in NY on business last September - I spent my days in the office and went out in the evenings to tour areas of the city that I didn't get a chance to see on my first visit. I went to Grand Central Terminal for the first time and was floored by its majestic beauty. I wandered around slowly and aimlessly and took in all the architectural details, all the preserved history. 

I re-visited Rockefeller Center because I didn't have enough time to see it properly on my first visit. This time, I took in the building's Art Deco features and drooled over all the black and gold inside. 

I'll never tire of the industrial beauty of the wrought and cast iron fire escapes on the façades of all the buildings in Soho/Tribeca and I spent some time walking up and down the side streets to look at them. 

I even had time for a little shopping while I was there. I'm not a big spender on clothing or fashion accessories but I allowed myself to splurge on a gorgeous, black leather Michael Kors bag. I also picked up a couple of chic iPhone cases on sale at J.Crew. 

As I was looking through photos of my trip after I got home, I noticed that an excessive amount of them were of chandeliers. New York is full of the most gorgeous chandy's and there is so much variety at every turn. There is also so much beauty in NYC's subway stations and I snapped a photo of the mosaic tiles at the Lincoln Center stop. I also stopped for gelato because the decor in the shop caught my eye and drew me in. 

L-R: A bank at the corner of 5th and East 43rd; across the street from this bank; in Grand Central Terminal

One of many Edison bulb, industrial looking chandeliers at the restaurant below my hotel. 

Task Lamp Chandelier at the entrance of my NY office. 

Walls, floor and ceiling covered in this bookshelf print, herringbone-patterned wood wall, lucite chairs - this small gelato shop is overflowing with amazing decor details. 
Of all the places I visited on this trip, the most significant and most memorable place I saw was the World Trade Center and Ground Zero. I happened to be in New York on the 12th anniversary of 9/11 and it was important to me to see the site and witness the memorial services that were taking place in the area. Someone very close to me used to work in one of the buildings that was hit and lost very many colleagues and friends; he hasn't been back to NY in a few years so I took photos of the new building at One World Trade Center to share with him, which at the time was nearing completion. It's inspiring to see the city rebuilding itself after such tragedy - that's why it felt symbolic to capture a photo of the construction crane in front of the building, as you'll see below. 

One World Trade Center, nearing completion - September 11th, 2013

Like a Phoenix rising from the ashes...NYC rebuilds 

Beams of light in place of the former towers - lit up for the anniversary 

I was only minutes into my first trip to NYC when I fell in love with it. It's such an amazing place, full of energy and heart, and while there's still a lot I haven't seen it somehow feels like a second home. This will be my third time there, and this trip will be the shortest by far so I won't get to see or do as much this time around, but I plan on returning many, many times in my future. I would even jump at the chance to live there if the opportunity presented itself. Not kidding when I say: I ♥ NY! 

I ♥ NY

I've been so busy traveling and working and going to school that I haven't had much time left for blogging.  It's time to start getting caught up!  

Four weeks ago I (finally) took my first trip to New York City!  It was for business, not pleasure, but I managed to take a few hours one evening to do some quick sightseeing.  Though I don't mind that I was there for work - I got to spend a few days in the NY office of my Canadian company, where they design all the in-house branded home decor products(!).  And anyway, I managed to see a lot more than I would have thought possible in only a few hours.  

I actually saw a lot more than I photographed, but here are some of the moments when I dared to attempt photography with my poor quality blackberry: 

Inside the lobby of the Empire State Building

Empire State Building lit up at night

Art installation at Rockefeller Center - "Human Nature" by Ugo Rondinone (it was put up the day I arrived in NY) 

Radio City Music Hall and NBC Studios

What a complex subway system.  I'm surprised I managed to figure it out and didn't once get on the wrong one!
I couldn't help taking a picture of this sign.  "Please: no smoking, no littering, but especially no boom boxes!"
Ha ha, so 80s :)  

Treated myself to some Magnolia Bakery cupcakes.  That's Peanut Butter and Jam on the right, and the one on the left was something like Triple Chocolate Truffle Fudge.  

Leave it to me to find a speakeasy-style bar that serves over 1000 brown spirits and will probably be a vacant building the next time I try to find it because the bar is magic and it doesn't reveal itself until the clock strikes midnight and oh yeah I happen to be in Paris and also I am in a Woody Allen movie.
(P.S. I ordered the peaty-est scotch on the menu, obviously) 

Okay, so the bar actually exists, it's called The Brandy Library :)

I was staying in Tribeca and was therefore surrounded by tons of fabric shops and I found this black and white striped fabric that I want to use to cover the DIY bench seat that I hope to one day get around to.  I also found the perfect fuchsia-coloured fabric to make pillow covers for those IKEA inserts I bought a couple of months ago.  Even unfinished, the colour looks great against my grey couch! 

I couldn't help posting this photo - I lay my new fabrics on my couch, walk away for 5 seconds and already kitty has curled up on them.  Kitty-approved fabrics, I guess that's a good sign.