My colleague Jan invites me to spend the upcoming weekend with her at the Ritz-Carlton Marina del Rey, where she’ll be staying while profiling new locations for Here Comes The Guide. I jump at the chance for some quality Ritz time. It’s a well-known fact around the office that I ♥ the Ritzes. (What can I say? I have a soft spot for superior customer service and a swanky setting!)
My colleague Jan invites me to spend the upcoming weekend with her at the Ritz-Carlton Marina del Rey, where she’ll be staying while profiling new locations for Here Comes The Guide. I jump at the chance for some quality Ritz time.
I was both maid of honor and wedding coordinator when my sister got married last year. Because so many of the guests were coming from out of town, we decided to combine the bachelorette party and bridal shower into one fun-filled weekend to save on travel time and ensure that everyone could attend.
To celebrate my friend Nicole’s 30th birthday in style, we went to Calistoga and spent a night at Indian Springs Resort and Spa. I had been super stressed from all the event planning I had been doing over the summer, so I was really looking forward to a day of relaxation and sun. This was just what the doctor ordered! They have these adorable cottages that were built in the 1940s, and their geyser-fed mineral pool made me feel like I was a part of Old Hollywood.
In my humble opinion, some of the best holiday presents don’t require wrapping paper. Experiences—especially those that fall under the category of sinful and relaxing—make thoughtful gifts that never gather dust. Here are a few holiday gift ideas, for you or someone you love:
I’ll admit that trying to juggle working at Here Comes The Guide, moonlighting as a floral assistant, and planning my sister’s bachelorette party/bridal shower for the past 6 months has been exhausting. As a reward, I decided to treat myself to a little relaxation before gearing up for my sister’s event.
There are so many options in the Napa and Sonoma Wine Country, both for wedding locations and for lovely places to stay. We decided, just this time, to forgo the spa/resort route (though, I love me some spa!) and instead chose the super-cozy and yet boutiquey Cottages of Napa Valley.
Choosing from the delectable Carneros’ spa menu was a challenge: Do I want to sample the yummy-sounding Sweet Ripened Apricot and Chardonnay Body Scrub and Massage, one of the Signature Treatments inspired by the “secrets of the grape,” or channel an exotic Oriental geisha, with the Red Flower Japan Body Ritual Massage? In the end, the practical side of me won out, and I chose the Micro-Crystal Firming Facial Repair Treatment which promised to transform my skin.
The arrival of Spring, the traditional time for renewal, prompted me to make some quality time for personal rejuvenation. I began at the Spa Village in Ojai Valley Inn. This supremely natural and uplifting oasis never fails to connect me to nature (as well as my inner flower girl!).