When I think of the holidays, I reminisce about my childhood holiday travels with my family. I remember ginormous Christmas trees decked in ribbons and shiny decor of the traditional red, green, gold, and silver. Sometimes I would see some purple and blue decorations (regardless of what is customary, one can dress up their tree in any color they want).
Style Details Tier Lace Dress | MAXSTUDIO Heels |Herve Leger Handbag|Yves Saint Laurent Jewelry | Yellow Gold Italian Chain Link Necklace & Earrings Set
Yellow Gold & Onyx Italian Cocktail Ring
These towering Christmas trees, of course, were found in hotels where we would travel to. It is certainly a tradition that I would like to upkeep to this date! I love how the chance opened up at a staycation I had at the Portofino Hotel & Marina this December.
I enjoyed myself as I basked in the wonderful ambiance that their creative interior design offered. My tier lace dress fit perfectly in the elegant scenery. My dress is by MaxStudio and it’s stretchy fabric contributes to its stylish comfort. I love how it hugs the figure without being inappropriate. Definitely an outfit I would repeatedly wear this season!
Their lobby-lounge was the perfect place to casually sit and converse with some friends while enjoying the view. It featured floor to ceiling windows that boasts of scenes of the fabulous marina outside. It was lovely!
As I was waiting for some friends to arrive for an event we had planned that night, I can’t help but contemplate how Christmas is truly my favorite holiday. As it is the climax of the season of giving, I love the story of Jesus Christ as He is the greatest gift that God has given us. John 3:16 “For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him might not perish but might have eternal life.” I can only hope that this joyous feeling will last all year round.
‘Tis the season to be jolly! Merry Christmas to you all! Remember, you are loved!
Imagine yourself in an exquisite restaurant. Now imagine panoramic views of blue sea & the marina seen through glass windows from the comfort of your table at a restaurant. I experienced a new kind of dining experience from a recent vacation I had at pleasurable Redondo Beach. Baleen Kitchen is a fabulous and luxurious spot where everything you taste is guaranteed to be homemade!
Style Details Dress | ASOS Heels |Yves Saint Laurent Jewelry| Sterling Silver Blue Topaz Drop Earrings & Cocktail Ring
Upon entering this fanciful restaurant, I knew I was going to enjoy this place. First of all, it’s location cannot be beat. Aside from being the premiere restaurant of a magnificent hotel such as the Hotel Portofino, it is also situated between the marina, where it offers stunning views of impressive yachts, and the blue sea.
We were seated beside their cozy fireplace surrounded by glass windows. Our server, Ronnie, was extremely polite, friendly and knowledgeable about the menu and specials of the day. She suggested a wonderful Pear & Arugula Salad with red wine reduction, white balsamic vinaigrette, candied walnuts and blue cheese imported from Denmark. It certainly did not disappoint! So was the delectable homemade Clam Chowder which tasted very fresh and has a more distinguishable taste in comparison to other clam chowder I have had in the past.
Truffle fries is a delicious addition to any meal. Truffle oil combined with melted cheese, just as you can see in the photo below, is simply divine! The combination of flavors and textures really made these special fries unforgettable. I’m sure you can all imagine just how good this tasted.
The very large and sumptuous scallops came on vanilla puree, glazed mustard, and baby carrots. It was paired with braised short ribs that were cooked for 12 hours. It was so soft it tore off right away as I pierced it with a fork.
Topped with Roquefort Cheese from France over a bed of mashed potatoes and asparagus, their steak tasted heavenly in the mouth. It was gratifying and delightfully tasteful. It was also generously topped with crispy onions, yum!
Instead of a traditional cake, we opted for a Cast Iron Bread Pudding with Rum Syrup, Candied Nuts and Butter Pecan Gelato made locally in nearby Hermosa Beach. It was the perfect choice to clear our palettes. I noticed that they have an After Dinner Drinks Menu and decided to try the French Nudge. It is made with Coffee, Kahlua, dark Creme de Cacao and Grand Marnier. Yes, it was THAT good! I brought it back to the hotel room with me as it served as the perfect nightcap.
Surely, you must visit the Baleen Kitchen this holiday season to experience an enticing dinner in their welcoming restaurant! They recently revamped it to make room for a more informal dining experience where sharing meals are encouraged. The restaurant is also willing to set up a way to share dishes from a more formal ambiance to accommodate families… truly servicing the best of both worlds while keeping true to the casual yet elegant atmosphere.
With a beautiful ambiance and a palatable menu, the Baleen Kitchen is a restaurant you wouldn’t want to miss!
For the occasion, I chose a loosely fit sleeveless jersey dress with round neckline, cut-away shoulders and an embellished trim. The cold shoulder design with faceted bead detailing to the straps creates soft pleats through the body unto its dipped hemline. Perfectly proportioned for a fashionable fit as I enjoyed a stylish restaurant!
This weekend, I attended an exquisite wedding ceremony & reception at the Vibiana in downtown Los Angeles. It was once called the Cathedral of Saint Vibiana, a beautiful and historic landmark, the former Cathedral of Los Angeles.
Evening Gown :: BCBG (similar)
Heels :: Zara (love this)
Clutch :: Handmade Bead (similar in gold)
Jewelry :: Italian Rose Gold & Onyx Earrings & Cocktail Ring by Prestige
I discovered that it is one of the few remaining nineteenth century landmarks since 1876. It was also concluded as a Los Angeles Cultural Monument in the 1960′s. It now serves as a fabulous venue for fashion shows, fundraisers, live entertainment and weddings, like the one I attended for my friends Gigi & Austin!
The venue has an amazing indoor space with high ceilings and an all-white decor. It was well complemented by a beautifully designed outdoor courtyard, which I enjoyed during the cocktail hour.
I believe that planning a classy wedding takes time and commitment while paying close attention to detail which ultimately exudes the couple’s sense of style. In my opinion, weddings allow the guests to get to know the couple more and their tastefulness. Gigi & Austin’s wedding was incredibly romantic and breathtaking. They are one elegant couple who exudes grace and sophistication.
A memorable moment that night was the delightful reading on the Velveteen Rabbit by Margery Williams which I’ve always been fond of. It’s a story that revolves around the Velveteen Rabbit’s question, “What is REAL?” The last words of the Skin Horse’s answer hits right at the core every single time: “…once you are Real you can’t be ugly, except to people who don’t understand.”
The beauty of wedding ceremonies for me is that it marks the pivotal point in the friendship of a man and woman where they’ve finally arrived at complete acceptance. I believe that marriage symbolizes the discovery of the real, authentic beauty of each other after a period of tumultuous times.
Much like in fashion, true authenticity and quality comes with the guarantee that the item is durable – a handbag or a pair of shoes that will can surely weather a storm.
Many people think that buying top quality accessories is a stupid idea, however, in my opinion, the quality of an item is beyond price as it will last for years, without ever losing the beauty, shine and softness as the first day you bought it. I believe the same principle goes when choosing relationships. We all know that a designer replica (or “fakes” as we call it) can break at anytime. We wouldn’t want our relationships to be the same. Authenticity is indispensable & beyond price.
Congratulations to the beautiful couple Gigi & Austin whom I truly believe shares an authentic kind of love that surpasses the beauty of their sensational wedding. May your marriage be filled with much love and happy memories for many years to come. God Bless you both!