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Monday
Mar072011

Ready to Entertain

Congratulations to Katie, the lucky winner of this fab blue granite cheese board by EcoStone. Her favorite way to entertain is to have a tie-in to her favorite charity, St. Jude Children's Research Hospital. She will often ask everyone to pitch in and make a contribution in their honor, or they'll do a little craft project or activity for all of the cancer-stricken kids at St. Jude. It is a lovely way to combine philanthropy and a great time. So Katie, kudos on your win and your kind heart. Keep up the benevolent entertaining!

 

Monday
Mar072011

Colonial a La Mode

Here's yet another fine example where fashion meets hospitality. The renowned Colombian fashion designer Silvia Tcherassi has partnered with CF Hospitality to develop the first Tcherassi Hotel + Spa in dreamy Cartagena, Colombia. As owner and designer, she believes the hotel project is a natural expression of her creative vision where she's been able to put into practice her earlier studies in interior design. “Fashion and hospitality are both businesses totally committed to the creation of new experiences and new sensations; trying to awaken the inner senses of each person whether through a new style of clothes or a perfect state in a beautiful environment,” explains Tcherassi. Drawing inspiration from her past fashion collections, Tcherassi was able to transform a magnificent 250-year-old colonial mansion in the heart of this seaside town into an inviting and very serene oasis. The seven unique rooms and suites reflect her eclectic and unique style. Her exquisite attention to details and luxe finishes happily coexist with the house's old colonial bones — the use of clothing labels on the bedding makes this retreat very fashionable.

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Sunday
Mar062011

Always A Fresh Hair Day

In my search for new and fun ideas to share with you today, I came across these hilarious pots designed by Good in the Republic of Kazakhstan. These ‘Facepots’ can be a fun alternative to picture frames, giving your portraits an amusing twist — and a funky hairdo. But if you're worried your prints might get damaged by water and/or humidity, don't. They're sealed between the basic white pot and transparent protective layer to keep them nice and dry. Aren't these witty? BTW, you have until 8 pm EST tonight to enter this week's GIVEAWAY :)

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Saturday
Mar052011

Weekend Fun

Pssst! I just got the perfect thing for you to make your weekend even more delicious. The Spring issue of Sweet Paul Webazine just came out and it's full of fun and yummy goodies. For the first time, Paul has dedicated the entire issue to kids. From delicious everyday food recipes for the whole family to white-and-gray crafty projects for Easter, your eyes will have a feast with its gorgeous photography. And if you happen to have kids, it's the perfect magazine to share with them as it's filled with witty ideas from cover to cover. Here's a sneak peek of what to expect. Enjoy the eye candy, and have a fantastic and relaxing weekend!

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Friday
Mar042011

A Cave With a View

I've often wondered how people lived back in the Stone Age, and how comfortable their dwelling might have been. I think that was the idea behind the magnificent and intriguing Sextantio Le Grotte Della Civita hotel. Located in the village of Matera, in southern Italy, the hotel is based on the owner's concept of total immersion, where all 18 rooms are located inside the Sassi caves themselves. They were very clever in keeping the integrity of the caves intact by using the original architectural materials from the area, disguising the use of modern technology and maintaining the new design to a minimum. The decor of the rooms is very basic using plain furniture built out of recycled materials, yet keeping the rural historic tradition through colors, textures and scents identified with the area. Where elements needed to be added to bring in modern ammenities —such as bathrooms which didn't exist in the original structure— they felt a minimalist approach was best suited. Their philosophy was not to betray the ‘soul’ of the building, but to preserve the caves' rural heritage. I guess Prehistoric men might have never left their caves with these kind of accommodations. I definitely have to put this place on my list of places to stay.

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Thursday
Mar032011

GIVEAWAY: Granite Cheese Board

Do you love to entertain? I do, and one of the things I enjoy the most is looking for different ways of presenting my hors d'oeuvres. These one-of-a-kind granite boards, created by Roman Borisenko in North Carolina, are a great and unique way to serve them. Being an environmentally conscious guy, Roman uses repurposed pieces of beautiful and unused granite slabs with his growing collection of wine corks to create these very special cheese platters. The cool thing about a granite board (no pun intended), is that it will keep your cold appetizers chilled for a longer period of time — especially if you refrigerate it before using it.

(Drum roll) Roman is graciously giving one fortunate reader the chance to win one of his lovely granite boards (pictured above). He is also offering a 15% discount to all of you when purchasing any of his boards at his Etsy shop and entering the special code DESIGNER15OFF. So let's give Roman, and his wife Aleksandra, a round of applause for this fantastic freebie. Thanks guys!

Sorry, but entries for this giveaway are no longer accepted.

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Wednesday
Mar022011

Effortless Elegance

This 1930s flat in Bilbao, Spain, was redesigned to open up the space and create a more flexible layout. One of the owners' main goal was to maximize the light throughout the entire apartment and take advantage of the panoramic views of the city. Integrating the original style of the apartment with the newly designed space became one of the challenges since the designers wanted to avoid harsh contrasts. In order to make it work, they resorted to the use of white in the walls, floors and woodwork. The interior designers Fran Ugarte and Iñaki Cuesta created a contemporary and informal look by employing a loose mix of styles and materials: solid wood, iron and stone. Based on a successful marriage of odd pieces with remarkable taste, vintage furniture, heirlooms and classic mid-century pieces live happily together in this space. I can't get over the effortless look and casual feeling of this charming pad, and no doubt, with a definite personality

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Tuesday
Mar012011

Recyclable Sophistication

Earth-conscious products have come a long way when it comes to design. What used to be very basic and generic-looking items like disposable plates, are now beautiful paper tableware. Thanks to the Wasara Collection, there is no excuse for not having a stylish table when you don't want to deal with dirty dishes. This line of single-use, biodegradable pieces is made with the aesthetics and sensibility of Japanese design. All 14 pieces in the line are sturdy and suitable for cold or hot (though not boiling) foods and beverages, and are oil- and water-resistant. In order to minimize environmental waste, Wasara uses tree-free renewable and fully biodegradable materials such as sugar cane fiber, bamboo, and reed pulp, representing their spirit of living in harmony with nature. There is no doubt that this graceful and irresistible collection of disposable tableware (that you can buy here) will add special sophistication to any casual gathering. Picnics and barbecues will never be the same.

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