Visit Costa Mesa, CA (Orange County’s Hidden Gem!)

One of the highlights of my road trip in California was visiting Costa Mesa. Located in the heart of Orange County, circled by Anaheim (where Disneyland is), and some coastal beach favorites like Huntington Beach and Newport Beach with an easy drive to Laguna Beach and San Clemente. It’s 10 – 20 minute proximity to all the big name OC areas I’ve been wanting to visit made it an attractive destination but it was their culinary, art and shopping scene that gives this city it’s distinct personality. Being only an hour outside of Los Angeles, and San Diego (it’s the perfect half way point), it was an especially attractive weekend destination and one I look forward to visiting again. Named the City of the Arts for it’s extensive public art on display throughout the city and Segerstrom Center for the Arts which is the leading performing arts center offering artistic and educational programs as well. You should check out the Art Walk while you’re there! The video above takes you on a quick tour of all the below shopping and eatery’s on my list!

Where to Shop:

The shopping scene is Costa Mesa is off the chain, especially considering it’s home to the internationally regarded South Coast Plaza mall which is probably one of the largest attractions and makes Costa Mesa an international destination. (It’s like the United Nations of shopping lovers in there). However, in a see of malls, plazas and shopping centers there is something for everyone. Three major shopping experience stand out all unique in their own right.

South Coast Plaza

South Coast Plaza, a renowned international destination for shopping and dining, celebrates 50 years of quality. It has come a long way and expanded since opening with Sears in 1967. It’s also the first Nordstrom location after Seattle. Today, it is home to more than 250 prominent boutiques, critically acclaimed restaurants and carries a mix of stores from Forever 21 to Chanel. Its unparalleled collection of diverse retailers, includes Bottega Veneta, The Webster, Cartier and Van Cleef & Arpels to Hermès, Gucci, Roger Vivier, COACH, Henri Bendel, Dolce & Gabbana, Sephora, Zara, UNIQLO and more, along with its customized concierge services, they also have a VIP Suite which I show off in my video. The window shopping alone makes it feel like a fashion museum.

A big highlight for me was the Louis Vuitton Fragrance Store, I didn’t even an exclusive fragrance store from the brand existed and is like a museum (also in my video). This year marks South Coast Plaza 50th anniversary a milestone they will celebrate all year with exclusive collaborations with global luxury brands, arts partnerships, special events, exhibitions, fashion shows, and more.

Where to Eat at the South Coast Plaza:

The Water Grill Restaurant

Excellent seafood, in nautical chic environment, we loved this restaurant. It’s a business casual vibe, great for a date night or place to take the parents.It’s few minute walk over the Unity Bride from South Coast Plaza so it takes you out of the shopping mecca in to calmer place adjacent to the Segerstrom Center for the Arts (and good place to start the Art Walk).

Seasons 52 Restaurant

Located in South Coast Plaza this is a fabulous stop for lunch, again the seafood and flatbreads were excellent. The perfect place to take a shopping break and re-energize.

The LAB Anti-Mall

With so many malls, Costa Mesa even has an Anti-Mall, which was definitely my vibe. It’s more laid back and artsy and a great place for freelancers and writers to work from. It has really casual and charming restaurants with a lot of vegetarian options and coffee shops, a few stores including Urban Outfitters and Buffalo Exchange as well as a number of classic Airstreams that are used for smaller businesses, including a pastry shop and children’s clothes. At the base of the parking lot there’s the Habana restaurant with serves Cuban and Latin American food and has been the anchor of this center. It’s a great place to sit outside and grab a drink.

Across from The LAB is The Camp (2937 Bristol Street), which we didn’t make it to but was recommended for stores that are more lifestyle stores geared to a more health conscious or fitness related demographic. While that does describe me, we ran out of time but this, especially SEED People’s Market and Seabirds Kitchen, which is their popular vegan restaurant are on my list for next time.

The LAB Anti-Mall is located at 2930 Bristol Street, Costa Mesa, CA, 92626

 SOCO and The OC Mix

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This was one of my favorite shopping and dining destinations for all things local! It houses a group of shops called The OC MIX, one of the most acclaimed shopping and food halls in Southern California. With an eclectic collection of boutique shops and specialty food spots, it is a must do! I bought gifts for everyone from funky cards to cool jewelry — I almost walked out with Chalk paint (not to be confused with chalkboard paint, and if I didn’t have a flight ahead of me probably would have. It’s literally my new DIY obsession. There isn’t a shortage of places to snack, I had my best date shake ever at Birdie Bowl & Juicery. There’s also Taco Maria, which has a charming outdoor space and was started by two time James Beard nominated chef, Carlos Salgado. He opened his brick and mortar location in Costa Mesa after operating a successful food truck (of the same name) for a number of years. Taco Maria is rated as one of the best restaurants in Southern California by the L.A. Times with its modern, creative take on Californian-Mexican cuisine.

Where to Stay: Avenue of the Arts Hotel

We conveniently stayed Avenue of the Arts Hotel, located directly across the street from the Segerstrom Center for the Arts and an easy walk to the South Coast Plaza shopping center. It’s a charming boutique hotel which felt like a cross between a Sheraton and W Hotel. Amenities included a fitness center, business center and pool located outside. With very cool decor and friendly staff, it was a great choice especially considering how prime the location was.

 Avenue of the Arts Hotel, 3350 Avenue of the Arts, Costa Mesa, CA 92626

 

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Road Trip to Joshua Tree in the Volvo XC60

California was one big road trip for me starting in Los Angeles to Palm Springs for Coachella with stops in Pioneer Town and Joshua Tree, two must-dos if you’re in the Palm Springs area before taking a tour of Orange County. I’m not a light packer when it comes to music festivals and being on the road for three weeks didn’t help… that, coupled with James’ stuff, a compact car was unrealistic.

Fortunately we partnered with Volvo to try out the 2017 Volvo XC60, which we basically lived out of. We had the T6 AWD Inscription trim – it drove like a dream, so much that at one point I looked down at the speedometer and found myself pushing 90, when I felt like I was going maybe 60. It’s incredible how quiet it is, smooth and solid feeling no matter what speed you’re going.

It was one of the most comfortable rides through Joshua Tree and the timing could not have been better. With all the rain they’ve been experiencing there were wild flowers blooming that hadn’t budded in decades. With so many colors, it was beautiful! We stopped to climb the rocks, walk some trails, stroll through the cactus garden, and even met a snake along the way. Enjoy the drive with us in the video above, More on the car and photo gallery below!

 

Back to the car, the build quality is great and after driving for a while, you start to notice a lot of well thought out design details, things that feel truly useful, polished and refined. It is quite refreshing as the way most modern cars look drives me insane, with weird curves, grills, scoops and holes everywhere which serve no purpose other than to add complexity.

Our model was packed with features and add ons like child booster chairs, heated everything (I’m talking steering wheel to windshield), adaptive cruise control, GPS parking reminders on my iphone, it’s really a smart car without trying to be too smart and most of all practical.

It’s the small things in life, which this car has in abundance. I mean, there is a button that can flip the back headrests down so you have better visibility in the back. My boyfriend always takes his off by hand and puts them back on when we have people in the back of his Jeep. I felt so spoiled in this machine. Like I said… small things!

Volvo is known as a safety focused brand and much of this design is invisible until needed at which point, you really appreciate it. Blind spot and lane departure warnings, collision and velocity sensors and a ‘City Safety’ mode which has resulted in 22% fewer collision claims (according to Wikipedia) in the SC60 compared to other SUV’s. And of course, airbags all around.

One of my favorite details is the fact that the instrument cluster tries to downplay how much information is shown to the driver. Have you ever noticed how many lights are competing for your attention when you are driving at night? You can choose to only be shown your current speed, instead of seeing the entire range of numbers in the speedometer. Because, how often do you need to see 100mph?

Back to build quality, the interior is gorgeous. In a world of uninspired, cheap plastic interiors, this one really shines. Continuous and fluid metal trim surrounds warm wood inlays on the doors and in the driver-centric infotainment console. Super comfortable seats that you could sit in for hours of road tripping.

Our model, the Inscription T6 AWD has a super and turbocharged I4 that gave it good acceleration when needed. The AWD keeps the tires where you want them and I really did get hooked on the design and use of the adaptive cruise control which lets you ‘lock’ onto a car in front of you and match its speed while you set the following distance. This keeps you from getting cramps in your gas pedal foot! The only feedback I’d give is more USB ports, but otherwise I would use the 12 volt to converter which is an easy solve for more ports.

Learn more about the car and added features at volvocars.com

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Vist Iceland: What to Do, Where to Go and How to Plan

For the past few years I’ve seen non-stop incredible photos of Iceland 0n my Instagram feed — images of the Northern Lights, Blue Lagoon, the Icelandic horses, and so many natural wonders that I knew I had to go. I felt overwhelmed though trying to figuring out what to book. With just a plane ticket (booking was the first step!), I started reading articles, reviews and asking advice of friends so here is the quick and easy guide to what I did, and what’s on my radar for next time.

WHERE TO STAY: Downtown Reykjavik, Room with a View

There are loads of hotels all over Iceland but if you’re limited on time, downtown Reykjavik is ideal. All of the tours pick up from there and it’s a really cute scene, filled boutiques, restaurants, popular attractions and life. We stayed at Room with View Luxury Apartments, which was the most ideal location. In fact if you’re looking at other hotels see how close it is to this one since it doesn’t get anymore prime and right. Although dubbed an apartment, it’s more of an upscale hotel suite complete with a kitchen, doorman and helpful staff to accommodate any bookings. There’s also a steam room and Jacuzzi on the property! We were a party of 4 people and one thing I learned is two double beds in a hotel basically doesn’t exist. This was the only hotel I found that could accommodate us in one room. I highly recommend emailing them in advance your needs. We ended up with 3 single beds and one double bed in our huge, beautiful, dream apartment with 2 bathrooms suite that was cheaper then booking two rooms somewhere else.

How to Get Around:

Your options are basically, taxi, car rental, bus, ferry or tour buses (more info HERE). I highly recommend renting a car, we used Lagoon Car Rental which was wonderful. They picked us up from the airport and drove us 5 minutes away to the car location and made it all super quick and easy! And also through a wi-fi router we had internet in the car the whole time. Renting a car made the most sense for us since we were a party of 4 and getting to/from the airport to Reykjavik is about a 45 minute drive and pricey, so is the Blue Lagoon (we were quoted $40 each way from Reykjavik, although they have ticket options that include a shuttle). Reykjavik is a very walkable city so we basically used the car for day trips and otherwise found easy street parking and did tours. The tours pickup from hotels in Reykjavik so that part was easy.

We rented a Renault Talisman which had plenty of space in the trunk for all of our stuff. Some people prefer a 4×4 SUV but I found the roads really well paved and since we were doing tours (all listed below) for more of our nature excursions, and the weather was mild, we were more than fine in a regular car. If you are doing more off roading and driving yourself around the country (especially in harsh weather) you may want to consider a 4×4.

WHAT TO DO IN ICELAND:

Blue Lagoon and Thermal Baths

I could not leave Iceland without visiting the Blue Lagoon Geothermal Bath. It’s one of the 25 Wonders of the World and with good reason, it’s incredible! Most people visit on their way to the airport or leaving it since it’s on the route from Keflavik Airport to Reykjavik. Pre-booking is required and they also offer massages in the water which is apparently incredible! They have different ticket rates, all of which get you the same access to the Blue Lagoon and access to the mask bar for the Silica Mud Mask — everything but the Standard Ticket also gets you the Algae Mud Mask (you can learn more about the ticket options HERE). Both of these skincare products are two of Blue Lagoons top selling skincare products, and they have a store on site (as well as at the airport and downtown Reykjavik) where you can purchase the whole line. I highly recommend the masks as well as their lip balm — pretty much all of it is incredible and makes for a great gift! There are two restaurants, a cafe and more formal dining option on the property. There is also a bar in the water to purchase drinks.

I recommend getting a Lifeproof Waterproof Phone Case so you can take pictures. They do sell phone bags for around $30 at the pool, but the case is great for all weather, this article is awesome article I read about someone who traveled to Iceland and tested it out: expertvagabond.com/ring-road-trip-iceland

Blue Lagoon is very touristy since I do feel like you can’t leave Iceland without going but there are several local thermal baths in Reykjavik that are more low key that the locals frequent which includes, Vesturbaer (a local favorite), Laugardalur and Reykjavik Indoor Thermal Pool.

TIP: Your hair will turn into a brillo pad if you get it wet so if you plan to make sure to wet your hair before going in (which is required) and then dousing it in conditioner, which they provide. And put a lot! Even when you think you’re done, add more, In my case I had my leave in conditioner and Moroccanoil as well. And used them after the bath to moisturize my hair. I didn’t fully go under but it did get wet from swimming and it saved my hair.

Explore Reykjavik

Downtown Reykjavik is totally happening with cute restaurants, bars and shops lining the streets. Aside from the local baths, there are many more attractions starting with the Hallgrimskirkja Church which is free to enter and for around $9 you can go to the roof for the best view of all of Reykjavik. Another must is a walk through the park to see City Hall and the Parliament Building. Other attractions include Harpa Concert Hall which you can go inside, Kolaportid flea market (which is only open on weekends that I heard mixed things about). There are also loads of museums including the National Museum and Perlan Science Museum, which came highly recommended. Most tourist centers and hotel have a map of Reykavik with all the major attractions on it.

South Coast Classic Day Trip

This was probably the most exciting tour I’ve been on and an absolute must for nature lovers! They pick up from Reykjavik and it includes:

  • Walk behind the mighty Seljalandsfoss waterfall
  • Stroll along the black sand beach of Reynisfjara to see basalt formations
  • Go to Cape Dyrhólaey or Reynisfjara beach to see puffins in season (May to August)
  • Visit Skógafoss Waterfall, considered one of Iceland’s most beautiful
  • Touch the ancient ice of Sólheimajökull glacier
  • Drive through the volcanic area of Eyjafjallajökull
  • See the feared active volcanoes of Hekla and Katla
  • Get spectacular views of glaciers framed by mountains on clear days

The Golden Circle Tour

See Icelands most popular sites on this tour, which includes 3 stops (plus a break for lunch): The UNESCO World Heritage Site of Þingvellir (Thingvellir), the spectacular Gullfoss waterfall, and a stop at two geothermal geysers, Geysir and Strokkur. There’s a Classic version, $110 (8 hours) and Express, $80 (6 hours) which make virtually the same stops, you just get more time at each with the Classic. There’s also this version that includes Snowmobiling ($224).

Northern Lights tour

This is of course very seasonal and depends on how active the aurora is and how clear the weather forecast is. On the bright side the tours usually don’t go out unless there’s a good chance you’ll see the Northern Lights, which they don’t know until the afternoon (usually tours start around 8pm or later and last for 2-4 hours). There are several options, hire a guide, do a driving tour or do a boat cruise. The boat cruise is more limited in terms of wear to see them so a good option if it’s going to be an excellent viewing night. You can book the tours in advance or have your hotel do it. It’s all priced around the same so whatever your hotel suggests or you booth through one of the main sites should be fine.

Visit the Icelandic Horses

They look like ponies, but don’t tell them that, since they are a unique and beautiful breed of horses — and so friendly! You’ll see them all over as you drive out to the country. Personally, all I wanted to do was pull over and hug them all — which I basically did every chance I got. A more official location to do that, as well as ride them is Ishestar, where you can visit them, ride them and even do a lava tour. It’s about a 15 minutes drive from Reykavik, making it really convenient to go visit by car.

Other Attractions:

Sólheimajökull glacier

Glacier hikes. While we got to the base of some glacier’s and saw them, we didn’t actually climb in them which I hear is incredible! My next trip I’d love to do that as well as this 2 hour Icelandic Horse Lava Riding Tour, Snowmobiling, and Cave Tours. Whale watching is also a big attraction.

Airline Tips: PAY ATTENTION IF YOU’RE TAKING A NIGHT FLIGHT

We flew WOW Air, which for a budget airline was really clean and nothing like the budget airlines in the US. The BEST tip I was given was if you’re flying at night from the US to Iceland to sit on the left side and get a window seat for a chance to see the Northern Lights. AND I DID! I saw them in the clouds and it was incredible. If you’re doing a night flight leaving Iceland for the US sit on the right side, window seat.

The other tip I got was to download the Netflix app and download movies to stream on the flight (no internet required to watch, just to download). WOW Air doesn’t have TV’s on the plane (and food and drink are only available for purchase, no complimentary in flight service otherwise), so this was a total game changer. Plus the flight is under 6 hours so it’s like 2-3 movies and you’re there!

What to Pack:

Obviously check the weather but what came in handy for me was: Waterproof phone case (I got the Lifeproof Waterproof Phone Case),  portable charger (I like the MyCharge Hub series since they plug right into the wall to recharge), converter, Uniqlo HeatTech Collection (I loaded up on leggings and long sleeves for my under layers), layers in general worked well, snow or duck boots, headphones (some of the tours have audio tablets to tell you about the destinations), sunglasses (it’s so bright there!), bathing suit (for the thermal baths, also some hotels have steam rooms/hot tubs), hand/foot warmers. It’s really dry so pack a good moisturizer (like Olay Total Effects), Don’t forget an SPF! If you’re going to the thermal baths make sure to pack a deep conditioner (and I also packed a hair oil). Face wipes — I love these individually wrapped ones from Ursa Major, also always come in handy. I also stocked up on Kind Bars since food is really expensive in Iceland and it made for an easy snack.

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Art Basel Miami Diaries

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Every year I look forward to going to Miami for Art Basel. It’s been nice in NYC as of late but usually by this time it’s freezing and I’m itching for the beach and some warm weather. And Art Basel is the most fun time to visit Miami! There are art shows happening non-stop (not just Art Basel, but Scope, NADA, Pulse and many others), plus so many brands are out throwing parties. And it’s a great meeting point for bloggers across the country, I love seeing everyone in Miami!

I traveled with Kristi from Currently Crushing, Joel from What Do Men Wear and my bad a$$ makeup artist bestie, Jenny Smith. We stayed at the cutest boutique hotel, The Beacon on 7th and Collins, which is a very central part of South Beach.

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We covered a lot of ground in our 5 day trip with so many exciting parties and events. We met so many amazing people and saw incredible art throughout the week. One of my favorite events included a piece of art, I got to take home… my eye! LensCrafters hosted an amazing private brunch at the The Delano hotel to celebrate art and their CLAIFYE Digital Technology — basically it’s an eye exam where they scan your eyes to detect your prescription. No more crazy drops and blurred vision, it’s a total game changer — I did a few months ago (check out my experience HERE). If you’re overdue for an eye exam, definitely read that article before making an appointment. The event also featured artist Jose Vergara, who specializes in drawing eyes, how amazing is the one he did of mine!?!?!

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Style Icon and my dear friend, Patricia Field was out in Miami doing a series of events and fashion shows to promote her ArtFashion initiative. Featuring one of a kind pieces hand painted by some of her top artists on display at the White Dot Gallery, you can view the current collection on her site: patriciafield.com

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Wilmer Valderrama or as I like to call him Fez from That 70s Show! (I also loved him in From Prada to Nada), hosted Men’s Night Out for Macy’s private label, INC at The Oasis at The Raleigh Hotel. Lets just say there were a lot of good looking guys, a trampeline and open bar, which is pretty much the perfect recipe for fun.
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Easily one of the craziest parties was the 50 Parties Ryan McGinness Book Launch. Hosted in the garden at the Standard Hotel, the event served to recreate some of the memorable parties Ryan McGinness hosted, including a tattoo parlor — yes, live tattoos happened! And that wasn’t even the craziest part… I won’t elaborate further, you can click the site for that, but it was wild!

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Vanity Projects hosted the CND Art Basel Design Lab where they flew in top nail artists from around the country including my girl, @MissPopNails who gave Kristi and I the most bad a$$ manicures.

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 Jean-Claude Biver, President of the LVMH Watch Division and CEO of TAG HEUER announced their partnership with street art star, Alec Monopoly! Hosted at the Mondrian South Beach, his work was on display and I fan girled out for a minute when I got to meet him.

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It wouldn’t be a trip to Miami without a Kyboe! party. Marc Bell the founder hosted a super fun pool party at SLS which also served up a pop-up shop for the watch brand. They were featured in Oprah’s Favorite Things and I’m wearing THIS MODEL in the photo above.

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Philippe Hoerle-Guggenheim hosted a special celebration featuring the work of  Laura Kimpton at the Skydeck Miami. I hadn’t been to that location but it was a fabulous roopf top space overlooking all the shops on one of the main drags in South Beach.

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I take no convincing to go to a champagne party, and PERRIER-JOUËT hosted back to back events at CASA FUENA. Featuring creative, acrobatic performances and bubbly flowing on every floor, it was a sexy scene and a complete blast!

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LuluLemon hosted LuluLemon [om]eBASEL, which was the cutest space ever! Hosted at a private residence that is dream home status, it opens to a private deck and water where guests had the opportunity to do everything from meditate, yoga classes to paddle board. And the interior featured good for you snacks and beverages to recharge and an art room, which I pretended was my makeup studio in the shot above. It was the calm in the storm that was my Art Basel experience.

And because no trip to Miami would be complete without a beauty interview I chatted all things fillers with the specialists at Botox LABB. They specialize in Botox and are strictly a Botox and filler bar (no plastic surgery), so we chatted about the latest ‘it’ treatment, Kybella! It’s the only FDA injectable treatment that destroys fat cells under the chin and basically takes all the fat away. It’s only done once and lasts forever! I fortunately don’t have neck fat yet, but they suggested that the earlier it’s done, the better since taking up a few centimeters is easier then an inch or so. Also be ready for 2 weeks of intense swelling, like hide your neck in a scarf or don’t leave the house. You can learn more about it at Kybella.com and if you do it, I expect an email telling me everything!

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Stay Here: Grand Fiesta Americana Coral Beach Cancun

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If right about now you need an escape not much tops a stay at the Grand Fiesta Americana Coral Beach Cancun. Prior to this trip if you told me Cancun was more than a party city, I probably wouldn’t have believed you. Sure, it’s knows for its night scene, but frankly with a resort as beautiful and inviting as the Grand Fiesta Americana Coral Beach, I found little reason to leave. All of the restaurants are exquisite and conveniently in the lobby and offer everything from tequila tastings to evening entertainment — the mariachi band was fabulous. And all I wanted was a relaxing beach vacation with a drink in my hand and this one delivered.

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The resort has jet skis and paddle boards for rent on the property. Their Gem Spa features an hour long 10- step hydrotherapy experience from steam rooms to hot tubs in addition to a full menu of services and indoor infinity pool. On the off chance you have a rainy day it’s the perfect place to settle in. Then there’s the beach. Does anything really top walking out of your hotel and directly onto a clean, beautiful, serene beach? Complete with an outdoor pool and tiki bar. They also have a ton of kid options for a family friendly experience.

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grand-fiesta-americana-coral-beach-cancun-viewAll 602 of their rooms offer ocean views and if you’re willing to splurge to the 11th floor with club lounge — I stayed in a Junior Suite, that included a king bed, balcony, generous couch and living room area and a vanity fit for my beauty closet. There’s also a bathtub, which I feel should be noted since so many luxury hotels these days are just building showers (which is a major disappointment). grand-fiesta-americana-coral-beach-cancun-beach

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If you have the means go for Grand Club VIP access, it offers a great club lounge with excellent food, coffee, drinks all day. Located on the penthouse floor, if you have to get work done, at least you can do so with panoramic views. There’s also a private deck and lounge outside and added benefits you can view HERE). However you book though, the hotel does not disappoint.

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Now, I pretty much didn’t want to do anything that involved leaving the property — I think you can see why. However, another gem of Cancun is the Isla Mujeres, an easy boat ride from Cancun and there is a convenient ferry pick up next to the hotel. isla-mujeres-cancun-golf-carts

There you can rent golf carts and explore the island. There are a ton of touristy shops and outdoor activities from zip lining. For a beautiful cliff walk head to Punta Sur located at the southern tip of the island. Filled with sculptures and unparalleled views, this was the home to an ancient temple honoring the Mayan Goddess Ixchel.

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You can learn more about the island and activities at isla-mujeres.net.

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Painting with Lemurs at the Duke Lemur Center

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If you’re visiting North Carolina and in the Raleigh Durham area or visiting Duke University, add visiting the Duke Lemur Center to your agenda. It’s open to the public and Duke houses the largest and most diverse collection of lemurs outside of Madagascar. They are a research center first and foremost so there is no holding/touching the lemurs but watching them — especially when they jump or rather glide through the air. Meeting so many different breeds (there are over 80 types in existance) is an unbelievable experience.

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The grounds are beautiful and set in the woods, so it’s a great outdoor activity. The lemurs are by the entrance and there are a number of guided tours available starting at $12. All of the lemurs are gated in so you can watch them from outside and learn about the different species. They also have some nocturnal ones which you go inside a dark room to observe them through the looking glass. 

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There are a few other tours and events (all listed HERE), we did the “Painting with Lemurs”($95), which is more accurately “watching Lemurs paint from behind the gate.” It’s still so awesome to see, especially since you get to take the painting home (you can also purchase them in the gift shop for $12.50+ depending on size), but you get to pick the colors and watch as they run around a canvas making you a custom masterpiece. We actually lucked out and had a whole family of four paint ours. Lemurs are female dominant so they don’t always let the males join in.

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duke-lemur-center-painting-with-lemurs

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Meeting the lemurs was definitely one of the highlights of our trip and is a must do if you’re in the Raleigh Durham area. If you’re on a budget the $12 price to see them is unbeatable and easily one of the best activities if you’re an animal lover. 

Book 2-3 weeks in advance since the tours do book up! Learn more at lemur.duke.edu

The post Painting with Lemurs at the Duke Lemur Center appeared first on Pretty Connected.

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