Portobello Road & Market

Portobello RoadPortobello road and market can be just wonderful at times! I absolutely love, love, love the fact that the buildings come in a range of delicious candy colors and the sheer randomness of some of the things you can find in that neighborhood. Despite the quirkiness in that neck of the woods, there’s also a certain cool classic vibe to it.

The World Famous Portobello Market

Portobello RoadThe fact that they have a Hummingbird Bakery with cupcakes as colorful as the buildings is certainly not to their disadvantage. Whoopie pies, brownies, cakes, and cupcakes have a magical power that can transform any average day into a stellar day. The same goes for Gelato Mio, another favorite of mine that serves some truly tasty Italian ice cream. I’m a total die hard fan when it comes to their coffee and hazelnut flavors. For when spring/summer decides to come around I can’t wait to try their sorbets, especially pear and raspberry. Yum, I can’t wait to binge my little heart and stomach out!

The World Famous Portobello Market

The Portobello Antique StoreIf you like antiquing, this is the perfect place for you. Portobello Road is notorious for it’s unique assortment of antiques. Portobello was even featured as the go to place on the tv-show Million Dollar Decorators by interior decorator to the stars Martyn Lawrence Bullard. Intrigued yet???

Portobello Road

Carmen at the Royal Albert Hall

Royal Albert Hall LondonToday took a turn for the better when I unexpectedly received a golden ticket to attend a dress rehearsal for a performance of Carmen at the Royal Albert Hall.

Royal Albert Hall LondonThe performance was naturally fueled with drama as it rightly should when it’s Carmen. I absolutely adore the music by Georges Bizet that’s featured in Carmen with my favorite being from act 2, La Fleur Que Tu M’Avais Jetée. The performance included everything from opera, murder, a bit of acrobats, stilts, and even live fire. It was all so exciting and especially to get a bit of a sneak preview! Don’t miss the opportunity to catch it while it’s on!

An Afternoon in the Park

Hyde Park, Kensington Garden LondonSometimes there’s really nothing better than spending a wonderfully long day out in a beautiful park. Yes, I’m certainly romanticizing the reality of the situation which is cold, limp hands, a dripping nose and possibly even sore feet but today it felt worth it.

Hyde Park, Kensington Garden Swans London

Hyde Park, Kensington Gardens LondonWhile visiting the Italian Gardens in Hyde Park it felt as though I had been transported out of London and dropped off in the charming gardens of a spectacular Italian palazzo.

Hyde Park, Kensington Garden LondonFeast your eyes upon the reigning queen of the Italian Gardens herself (me) along with friend and compatriot Haley in tow. Stylish divas… just saying :)

Hyde Park, Kensington Garden London

Judith Scott at The Serpentine Gallery London

Judith Scott, Untitled, 1993, mixed media.

While wandering through the park, I also stopped by the Serpentine Gallery to check out their latest exhibition Rosemarie Trockel: A Cosmos. When I saw that the exhibition was additionally supported by the luxury Italian brand Bvlgari, I simply couldn’t suppress my curiosity. However, as it turns out the exhibition just wasn’t for me. Rosemarie Trockel’s work was featured alongside the work of other artists from a variety of disciplines and many of the artworks and objects on display were selected by Trockel herself while conversing with curator Lynne Cooke.

Hyde Park, Kensington Garden London

Menswear on Bond Street

Canali Menswear 2013

It might not be spring or summer quite just yet but the menswear of Bond Street is definitely turning up the heat, muy caliente!

Canali Menswear 2013Call me crazy, but I absolutely adore checking out the beautifully styled luxury windows of Bond Street and imagining the handsome men that might fill the equally handsome suits featured. It seems I have a certain predisposition towards the deliciously sharp suits and fashions of Italian brands Canali and Corneliani, which are just so undeniably sexy and stylish!

Canali Menswear 2013

Corneliani Menswear 2013However difficult it may be, try to remain composed by keeping your tongues from wagging  in your mouths as the staff really don’t appreciate you salivating on their goods or windows :( Bummer, I know!

Idée Fixe Coconut Water

Chi Coconut WaterNaughty, naughty me… I have a new obsession and it’s coconut water! Granted, this may not be such a surprising development after having partially grown up surrounded by sunshine and coconuts in the tropics. But, it was definitely my winter vacation that cemented the love affair. Coconut water is extracted from young green coconuts as the hazy white natural juice inside. For those of you who’ve yet to give it a go, it tastes a bit like tree water, like if you’d put a piece of wood in a glass of water and not necessarily like the sap. It can be undeniably refreshing, especially if your prune to bouts of nostalgia for those relaxing holidays you spent by the beach slurping on the real thing.

I’ve seen it marketed as the healthy all-natural option of sports drinks to be enjoyed after hitting the gym particularly hard, but for me, I’m just a fan of the peculiar taste and wonderful memories I have of drinking it. Regardless, it must have some sort of health benefits (yes, that’s probably me just trying to convince/justify my indulgences). While in Thailand, I asked and was told that it is the young and slightly immature coconuts that they harvest when they are about 5-7 months to use for the drink. They added that the water was full of minerals like calcium, iron, manganese, magnesium, and zinc .. Sounds good, doesn’t it?

So tell me, have you ever tried a slurp and if so, what did you think?

Death: A Self-Portrait at the Wellcome Collection

Death: A Self-Portrait at the Wellcome Collection LondonSwung by the dramatic and quirky memento mori themed exhibition Death: A Self-Portrait at the Wellcome Collection, a venue dedicated to exploring the connection between the past, present and future of medicine, life and art. I was definitely intrigued as the exhibition is devoted to showcasing cultural and historical attitudes towards death. Clearly, my dark side is taking over as I’ve gotten inspired enough to adore this stunning chandelier made out of bones (well, not real bones but mixed media consisting of plaster, steel, wire, cardboard boxes, and newspaper by Jodie Carey in 2009).

Death: A Self-Portrait at the Wellcome Collection LondonDetail of Vanitas Still Life with a Bouquet and a Skull by Adriaen van Utrecht, 1643, oil on canvas.

The exhibition is divided into a series of rooms, each with their own sub-theme such as contemplating death, the dance of death, violent death, Eros & Thanatos, and commemoration. Don’t feel the need to be intimidated by the bold and gripping titles as the exhibition isn’t nearly half as spooky or scary as you might imagine, instead I’d say more fascinating. Death can be such a taboo subject whereas this enlightening exhibit provides its audience with the opportunity to reflect upon their own feelings towards mortality.

Death: A Self-Portrait at the Wellcome Collection LondonIt is a light hearted exhibition with a beautiful collection of around 300 pieces consisting of  paintings, etchings, sculptures, and historical artifacts. If you’re suddenly feeling curious and/or brave, why not stop by?