Happy Memorial Day Weekend!

HappyMemorialDay

Happy Memorial Day Weekend everybody! Are you out traveling, or staying in and bbq’ing it-up this weekend? My good friend is getting married in 3 weeks, so we treated her to a Los Angeles staycation bachelorette weekend. It all began at Glen Ivy, the Disneyland of Spas!

SpaDay1 (Me and the future-bride, Brenda)

Given that it is a holiday weekend, we arrived at 10am and the admission cost was $65. I’m not one to do any spa treatments… I don’t even get my nails painted (Im a DIY-er, you know), but this $65 fee is worth it. This place has thought of everything. It’s a great women’s retreat full of amenities, natural pools, floating pools, pool aerobics, jacuzzis, steam rooms, saunas etc. And for those with more money to spend, they offer massages and other spa packages at an additional price. This was a great bachelorette party activity, and even a great girl’s weekend getaway. At an hour outside of LA, you feel removed from the city and yet it’s easy to get to.

AceHotel (The view from the Ace Hotel rooftop at night)

We drove back to LA from Glen Ivy and ended up at our home for the night, the new Ace Hotel. I’ll admit, this new hotel was hipster heaven but they are still figuring out the logistics of running a hotel. Our room was supposed to be ready at 3pm, and when we arrived at 5pm it still wasn’t ready. With no real lobby to wait in, we went to their rooftop bar with all our luggage where there was also very little room to wait. We were also dressed for a spa and not for a rooftop bar which left me feeling a little embarrassed and out of place. After an hour of waiting our loft room was ready.

They did give us a complementary bottle of wine for our hassle, but I’ll admit the room had a not great smell to it. Alas, we didn’t let that get in the way of our spa-zen spirit. We got ready (rushed, as we had dinner reservations to make). We booked a 4 person room (and paid for 4), which had 1 bed and a couch that opens out into a big bed, and they assured us this was a 4 person room. But getting them to come assemble that couch-bed took multiple attempts, and when they did provide sheets, they just left them sitting there on the couch. Really? You can’t assemble the couch-bed that you’re insisting is meant for guests to sleep on? Ace Hotel fail. I don’t mean to complain, but this was not a cheap room considering the amount of issues that came up.

At this time more LA friends joined us in the room as we got ready. Since it’s a stay-cation it was great that friends could come and go for different events/meals throughout the weekend. Once ready, we walked down to the Wooden Spoon for dinner where we met up with even more friends of the bride-to-be. We had a delicious meal with yummy sangria and complementary rose champagne. Considering it’s a small place, they were great to host all  8 of us in the party, as some other local restaurants panicked at the idea of 8 guests. I highly recommend this spot for dinner if you’re downtown (I had the shrimp balls and beets salad).

FriendsAtAceHotel (Eva, Me, Grace, Tamar)

From there we walked back to the Ace Hotel to hit-up their rooftop bar now that we were properly dressed for the occasion. Of course we had to rock the bachelorette party-crown attire. So much fun.

Bar107 (Dancing at Bar 107, view of the ceiling in the dancing room)

We decided that dancing was in order, as the bride-to-be loves to dance. We walked from the hotel over to Bar 107 where lots of dancing commenced. Lots and lots of dancing.  Around 1:30a we were pooped and Uber‘ed back to the Ace. Slumber party fun began and then was followed by crashing.

TheMorningAfter

The morning after: a hearty meal at Nickel Diner (an LA institution). What a fun half of Memorial Day weekend, to spend it with good friends relaxing at the spa, eating great meals and then dancing the night away. Now what to do for the second half of this long weekend? I’m sure I’ll come up with something 😉

My NYC Weekend

A few weeks ago I made a weekend trip to NYC to watch my good friend get married and it was a blast. I’m just so glad I had pretty warm weather (considering it was January in New England). To think that if they got married this past weekend, we’d all be stuck there! For those of you reading this while currently trapped in the snow, just know that it will soon look like these photos again and then before you know it, spring time!

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The wedding party was shacked up at the Ace Hotel (super hip swanky hipster heaven) in Midtown. It was pretty affordable, as my good friend Sally (Also attending the wedding) split the costs. It had a large lounge lobby, which I assume had free wifi given the crowd. They also had shops, a bar and a coffee shop. At night the lobby turned into a nightclub. As a hotel guest I could bypass the line and go right in… Im too-cool-for-school. The photo above is of the coffee place Stumptown. This place felt like a Portlandia skit and often the line was out the door.

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After the Saturday wedding, I spent Sunday and Monday with my childhood friend Carrie exploring the city. Since moving to Los Angeles, whenever I come to NYC Im tight on time and trying to see everyone I can. Given that Christmas was only a few weeks prior and I got to see lots of people then, this was a nice excuse to spend Sunday and Monday just being low-key and hanging out. I can’t tell you the last time I just “hung out” in NYC. Carrie and I visited some of her favorite stores + flea markets. It was so relaxed and nice to not have an itinerary.

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We went to a giant flea market on the West Side around 76th St (near the Natural History Museum). We then walked down Columbus Ave stopping in at cute places, like Paper Source and the American Folk Art Museum, until we ended up in Columbus Circle and warmed up in the mall.

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Carrie and I are both in the market for new glasses so she said we HAD to go to Warby Parkers showroom, and it was the best decision ever. It’s located in the Puck Building (aka Grace’s Design office building on Will +Grace). This beautiful building has larger than life Puck statues on the exterior… it stand out. I’ve seen this building on Will and Grace for years, so it was cool seeing it in person. Inside Carrie knew exactly where to go (as there was no signage and it seems like a private building). Sure enough their showroom is on the fifth (?) floor of this building. Here are the Warby Parker offices as well as a place to try on all their glasses. It was surprisingly busy for a store hidden in a signless building. For $100 Warby Parker gives you the frames and the prescription lenses AND donates a pair of glasses to charity. How cool is that? Plus the glasses are so cool looking. Once you create an online account, they send you any 5 frames for free to try on for 5 days. They even send you the return shipping label so this all costs you nothing. Genius. It was nice visiting their showroom, but this way if you don’t live in a major city you can also try on their glasses. Do it!!

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After our glasses shopping (which was super fun) we visited the Housing Works Thrift Shop and Bookstore and Brooklyn Industries in Soho.

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After a quick walk around Soho, it was time to head to the airport 😦 I’ll be back NYC and hopefully next time it will be longer than just a quick weekend.