• One of the Most Eggciting Brunch Places! Egg Shop

    Hi, LoDown fam! I hope you’re having an eggcellent week so far—yes, I did just make that pun! đŸ˜‹ 

    I’m about to guide you through another one of my super awesome brunches. This time, we’re headed to SoHo to eat at the Egg Shop on 151 Elizabeth Street. If you’re a fan of eggs, you’re definitely going to be a big fan of this place!

    Brunch Menu

    I’ve never seen an all-things-eggs menu like the one they have here. Their Sandwich and Cruiser options are endless. If you don’t see anything that tickles your fancy, you can go for the Custom Egg & Cheese option. They also have delicious (non-egg) Sides that pair really well with all their eggciting entrees. My boyfriend and I decided to “go big or go home” when ordering so in addition to choosing an entree each, we also decided to pick our own sides as well!

    Buttermilk Biscuit with Honey Butter and Seasonal Jam

    Absolutely no regrets with this starter. The Buttermilk Biscuit was fluffy and already full of flavor, but the Honey Butter and Seasonal Jam gave it a huge upgrade, making my taste buds dance with joy.

    Steak and Egg Sandwich

    My boyfriend ordered the Steak and Egg Sandwich, which is made with grass fed tenderloin, sunny up, chimichurri, caramelized onion aioli, fresh pickled jalapeno, farm greens, and fresh hero. Truth be told, I did not get to try this one out because he devoured the whole thing—a really good sign of how tasty it probably was. I mean, you can never go wrong with steak and eggs.

    Scrambler

    This was probably my second or third time ordering the Scrambler—a mixture of soft scramble, roasted mushroom, tomato confit, scallion, and pecorino. Why do I keep ordering this? Well, I’m actually a hardcore fan of anything with mushroom. I knew I had to revist the Egg Shop when I first ordered the Scrambler back in September. It’s like a deconstructed omelette, but better. Everything blends well together and every time I finish the bowl, I wish there was more to devour. Tip: eat with Egg Shop’s hot sauce!

    Fried Chicken

    My next favorite thing after the Scrambler – a side of friend chicken. I didn’t have any expectations, I honestly ordered it because I wanted some meat. Oh boy, oh boy, oh boy! I thought Popeye’s had the best fried chicken in the world, but not anymore. You’re looking at the most delicious piece of $7.00 fried chicken, drizzled with honey, dutifully devoured by Courtney.

    Stay tuned for my next food adventure! 

    xx,
    Courtney Xu
    Image result for instagram icon@courtneyxu

  • I Finally Made It to the Butler Bake Shop! Nomz

    Hi, LoDown fam!

    I made it down to Brooklyn again and stopped by the Butler Bake Shop on 95 South 5th Street, a bakery I’ve been meaning to check out. Upon walking in, I immediately fell in love with the place. The natural light, gleaming through the huge windows, was so beautiful and Insta-worthy.

    If you’re looking for a casual place to hang, I highly recommend this spot. The food and ambiance was everything I could ask for.

    I’ve never been a huge fan of empanadas, but because this was such a highly-recommended dish, I thought I’d give it a try. Infused with eggs, smoked bacon, arugula, and cheddar cheese, the pastry gave my taste buds quite a joy ride! The dipping sauce that came with it was also a nice touch. I’d actually go back to Butler just to get this empanada over and over again.

    Please please please try the Breakfast Empanada if you ever make your way here!

    I also ordered the Herb & Chili Scone (pictured left) and the Sausage Roll (pictured right) to share with my friends. The Herb & Chili Scone is made with chili, thyme and chives, and is garnished with sea salt with whipped butter on the side. I’ve never had a savory scone, but this one was right up my alley. If you’re wondering, the whipped butter and sea salt complimented the scone quite nicely!

    The Sausage Roll made from ground pork and onions was topped with pickled cabbage. I’m a sausage lover, so the Sausage Roll did not disappoint! As you can see, my tongue tends to lean more towards the savory side of things. But, for those of you with a sweet tooth, Butler also has a variety of sweeter pastries!

    Hands down one of my favorite #coffeecorners. If you’re in the area, do me a favor and hit up this place—you’ll thank me later! Butler Bake Shop is the spot for catching up with a girlfriend, reading up on your current novel, or silent people watching. Oh, and if I haven’t insisted enough, don’t forget to order the Breakfast Empanada!

    Thanks for enjoying this foodie moment with me! ‘Til next time.

    xx,
    Courtney Xu
    Image result for instagram icon@courtneyxu

  • My Top 6 NYC Brunch Spots Yum

    What do the the words “hungry” and “weekend” have in common? Brunch, of course!

    It’s no secret that Saturday and Sunday afternoons in the city are best spent enjoying all the culinary wonders New York has to offer. If you didn’t already know, there are many different types of experiences a brunch enthusiast can opt for: intimate, bottomless, or even an “all out” extravagant champagne party. Not only is the mid-day, mid-afternoon meal a perfect hangover cure, but it’s also a great excuse to set some time aside for gossip and witty banter with your girlfriends. Come on, ladies, it’s time to grab your party hats and become a real New Yorker.

    Let’s raise our Mimosas and Bloody Marys for a toast to my six favorite brunch places!

    Read More

  • How to Spend Valentine’s Day in New York City Pamper yourself!

    With Valentine’s Day right around the corner, I thought I’d share some of my favorite spots in New York City with y’all. Whether you’re spending Valentine’s Day with the girls, a lover, or your couch, these suggestions are open to all!

     

    1. GO ON A STAYCATION AT THE QUIN HOTEL

    One of my favorite hotels in New York City is The Quin. Located in the heart of the city on 57th and 5th, the Quin is a combination of all things modern, luxurious, and artistic. Plus, they have impeccable service (and awesome city views). Not only are their beds super comfortable, but their contemporary bathrooms are also to die for! Psst! They have Fresh bath amenities—you know how much I love Fresh beauty products! The Quin is the perfect staycation spot to spend with a significant other or even a gal pal.

     

    2. GET A FRESH, HAND-BLENDED FRAGRANCE AT LE LABO

    If you know me, you know that I’m the type of person who loves going to places just for the experience. That’s why I love it here at Le Labo! They’re all about craftsmanship and creating a fresh formulation (of their fragrance) for you! Long story short, there is a collection of fifteen fragrances for you to choose from. After selecting your soulful scent, the fragrance is then hand-blended and compounded right in front of your eyes! There are a few boutiques in New York City, but the one in West Village is my absolute favorite!

     

    3. TREAT YOURSELF TO A CHOCOLATE SCRUB AT LUSH SPA

    When I first heard that Lush had a spa location in New York City a few years ago, I knew I had to check it out one day. With that said, I had my very first Lush Spa experience with one of my best friends a few weeks ago! Let me tell you, Lush Spa does not joke around. We tried The Comforter, a perfect Valentine’s Day treatment! The beauty experience started with an exfoliating hot chocolate scrub all over your body, followed by a rose serum application. I don’t want to spoil the rest—there are a few surprises in between! This scrub is perfect for one of those #treatyourself days. Or, you can book the couple room and enjoy with a bestie. Can’t wait to try out another one of their treatments!

     

    4. GIFT LONG-LASTING ROSES TO A LOVED ONE

    You’ve probably seen Venus Et Fleur floating around on Instagram. If not, here you go! Doesn’t this arrangement look completely dreamy and mesmerizing? The best part is, these rose arrangements last up to one year. They have different arrangement sizes, with your choice of box shape (square or round) and color, as well as the color of the roses—there are so many colors to choose from! In the last month or so, I sent two of my girlfriends a Le Mini Round arrangement, and it totally made their day. They smell great, and they’re the perfect sentimental addition to a home!

     

    5. WEAR SOMETHING SEXY JUST BECAUSE

    Just because! Valentine’s Day isn’t a mandatory night of going out and having a candlelit dinner. Throw on something sexy while you’re watching Netflix under the covers with a class of wine. And if there’s a Bae around, I’m sure he’ll appreciate it. These pieces are from Adore Me, my secret one stop shop for all things undergarments (both sexy and everyday). My current favorite sets are the Kenzi and Quinn Unlined—styles that are not too revealing, but still sexy at the same time!

    Hope this helps you with your Valentine’s Day plans. It might be just another day for some people, but these are great places and things to do nonetheless!

    xx,
    Courtney Xu

  • Brunching at Eugene & Co. Let's hear it for Brooklyn!

    I’m not really a Brooklyn kind of girl, but when I do make my way there, I get my boozy brunch on!

    While visiting Bedford Stuyvesant, I decided to stop by Eugene & Co., an organic restaurant and bar. I immediately fell in love with the place as soon as I walked in. All about its rustic aesthetic, ya feel?

    I had such a hard time choosing a drink from the drink menu—everything looked so good. Even though I usually get a Mimosa, I decided to get something different this time around!

    And so, I decided on the Coloniala cocktail formulated with gin, grapefruit, honey, lime, and bitters. It was on point! My boyfriend also ordered a cocktail, The Earl, which was infused with gin, earl gray, lemon, and prosecco. Yes, mine was delicious, but The Earl was way better. I loved that they sprinkled what seemed to be earl gray tea leaves on top!

    I ordered the Brown Rice Bowl, a blend of black beans, corn salsa, avocado, pico de gallo, and cilantro vinaigrette, topped with a sunny-side up egg! It was divine (especially with some hot sauce)! All the ingredients were fresh and healthy. I totally recommend this dish if you want something light, but filling. Best of all, you won’t feel bad eating it!

    The boyfriend ordered a Meatloaf sandwich—a mix of angus beef, aioli, smokey tomato jam, bacon, and crispy onions. This is probably the restaurant brunch favorite. I mean, just look at the thing! That bacon, though! Truth be told, I was a little jealous, but he let me have a few bites! Yum. I will definitely come back to try some of their meatier options.

    Totally recommend checking this place out if you’re in the Bed-Stuy area! Even their bathroom was super fun. It felt like I was in an art gallery in a completely different era. Stay tuned for my next foodie experience!

  • Have You Heard of Plant Nite?

    Plan a date!

    I’m pretty sure you’re familiar with Paint Nite. If not, Paint Nite is an event that usually takes place in the back section of a restaurant where you’re encouraged to drink a bit of liquid courage and become inspired enough to paint a picture you thought you could never paint. Yup! A resident artist guides you step-by-step through a series of how-tos and you’re eventually left with a beautiful canvas to bring home. All the art supplies are free. Some places even allow you to bring your own booze. Best of all, you don’t need to be an artist to join in on the fun.

    Plant Nite, however, is a different activity in and of itself. Instead of painting a picture, Plant Nite goers create their very own terrariums! When I found out about Plant Nite, I knew I needed to hop on the gardening wagon. I immediately scheduled an available date around my birthday and invited a few girlfriends to join in own the fun. Don’t worry, you don’t need a “green thumb” to excel. These fun events are really open to all, regardless whether you know a lil’ something something or nothing nothing about plants and painting.

    Step 1. After the gloves went on, we started building the bottom layer of rocks!

    Step 2. The succulent soil comes next, and we packed a lot in there!

    Step 3. We got to choose two succulents, plant them, and spritz them with water!

    Step 4. The staff gave us extra small rocks in different colors and dyed moss to decorate!

    Let me know in the comments below what you think! I totally recommend going to Plant Nite. It’s always fun to get your creative juices flowing after a little booze. Don’t forget to check Groupon or the website itself for a discount code when attending these events, as they can get a little pricey. For now, use LODOWN45 for 45% off until the end of March. Happy planting, LoDown fam!

  • Visit the Mario Badescu Skincare Salon!

    Why? Because it’s facial time!

    If you’ve been reading my skincare articles, you’ll know that I’m a big fan of Mario Badescu products. I love this brand because they give customers (yes, you!) a free “skin analysis” before recommending a range of relatively inexpensive products that target your skincare needs.

    I decided to check out the Mario Badescu Skincare Salon, located at 320 East 52nd Street, for one of their European Facials.

    Main Lobby (Photo: Mario Badescu)

    The waiting area, chic and spotless, is decorated with framed pictures of celebrities who have visited before. The wait time for my appointment was not very long. I was brought into a facial room where I changed before meeting my esthetician who explained everything she was doing throughout the entire facial process. The European Facial includes a detoxifying steam, extractions, a light facial massage, and a mask that is customized to the client’s skin type. The facial was definitely enjoyable and my skin definitely felt cleaner and looked more radiant afterwards!

    Consultation Room (Photo: Mario Badescu)

    After my facial, I had a one-on-one consultation with my esthetician. She informed me of my skin needs and recommended both products and a regimen for maintenance and upkeep. The products were displayed conveniently behind the esthetician on glass shelves. I was then allowed to choose which items I wanted to purchase.

    Totally love how Mario Badescu products come in various beautiful colors! 😍

    Here is a mini haul of what I picked up! I went home with the Orange Cleansing Soap, Papaya Body Lotion, Botanical Exfoliating Scrub, Rose Hips Nourishing Oil, and Vitamin C Serum.

    If you’re in the NYC area, definitely check this place out! This skincare salon provides more of an in-and-out treatment that gets the job done. I definitely recommend it! 

  • Take a Day Trip (out of the City)!

    📍Dia:Beacon

    If you and your “Instagram Boo” are looking for new backdrops (*cough* holiday cards *cough*), look no further.

    I dragged mine—willingly, of course—to Beacon, New York.

    Tucked neatly alongside a slight bend in the Hudson River, 89 minutes north from Grand Central Terminal, Dia:Beacon, a modern art museum and enclave of all things trĂšs chic, is the perfect destination for a Saturday getaway.

    Home to 21 exhibits, both visiting and long term, the museum, a former Nabisco box-printing facility, spans 160,000 square feet in exhibition space. With collections that include Dan Flavin’s untitled (to a man, George Mcgovern) 2, Robert Irwin’s Excursus: Homage to the SquareÂł, and Walter De Maria’s 360˚ I Ching / 64 Sculptures, Dia:Beacon—its expansive grounds and impressive artwork—served as an ideal date destination.

    Robert Irwin‘s garden entrance to Dia:Beacon—a quaint nod to the manicured lawns in Paris, don’t you think?

    To make the 9:43 a.m. Poughkeepsie train, I was kindly reminded to wake up at 8:30 a.m. Coffee downed and scrambled eggs devoured—a little past 9:00 a.m.—my handsome date and I were out the door.

    Pro tip: if you’re taking the 9:43 a.m. train from Grand Central Terminal to Beacon, New York, prepare to board by 9:30 a.m.

    With the amount of ambitious hikers ready to conquer Bull Hill, you’ll be fighting them for a seat on the train. The majority of these early morning passengers get off at Cold Spring, a stop or two before Beacon, so the idea is to SIT DOWN FAST before you have to stand for the majority of your ride.

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    Sol LeWitt’s Wall Drawing #1211. The man drew the lines by hand. Bless.

    Train tickets roundtrip, off-peak, are $32 per person and the museum entrance fee, for adults, comes in at $15.

    There’s a Metro North Getaway deal for $36.50 total, but unfortunately, I couldn’t figure out how to work the system. Still, $94 for a day trip worlds away from the hustle and bustle of the city was completely worth it.

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    Michael Heizer‘s North, East, South, West.

    Dia:Beacon has a pretty relaxed photography policy so as long as you’re mindful of your flash, all snapping—except for pictures of Walter De Maria’s 360˚ I Ching / 64 Sculptures—is fair game.

    Regardless whether or not you’re shy, there will be visitors dressed to the nines posing next to the various installations.

    At the same time, there will also be visitors who are genuinely there for the artwork so regardless where you fall on the vanity spectrum, you’re guaranteed to have a good time.

    Debating whether or not to go for the pose? I say you channel Nike and just do it!

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    Dan Flavin’s untitled, 1970.

    G and I wandered the four-story establishment without much of a method in mind. I enjoyed anticipating the artworks that waited ever-so-patiently behind every corner, staircase, and wall.

    If you prefer to plan, strategize, and optimize your route, you can pick up a floor plan at the entrance of the building.

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    We, for example, stumbled across this Dan Flavin early on and by accident.

    Three hours, one cappuccino, one latte, and one chocolate-dipped macaroon later, we were both ready to go home.

    I napped so soundly on the 2:08 p.m. train back that I actually drooled.

    For those eager to rally, however, Storm King Art Center, the super cool sculpture park, is well within driving distance and also worth a visit!

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    Go with someone who indulges your crazy. You’ll end up with better pictures and better memories!

    What to read up more on Dia:Beacon or the Dia Foundation? Click here and here respectively.

    Otherwise, I bid you adieu with a successful Instagram taken by my Instagram Boo.

    No paparazzi, please đŸ™đŸŒ || đŸ“· @gthemen29

    A post shared by Paula (Not Your Average) Ho (@paulayjho) on

    [googlemaps https://www.google.com/maps/embed?pb=!1m18!1m12!1m3!1d2988.1641267998098!2d-73.98482968501688!3d41.500717979253864!2m3!1f0!2f0!3f0!3m2!1i1024!2i768!4f13.1!3m3!1m2!1s0x89dd33d553ec0015%3A0x8ef011fb802a94fe!2sDia%3ABeacon!5e0!3m2!1sen!2sus!4v1478027935106&w=750&h=400]

     

  • Are You Too Cool For School?

    #TCFS

    Finally stateside (besides Sephora), Too Cool For School is introducing 11 uniquely-Korean lines at their newly-opened flagship store in SoHo. Complete with incredibly intricate packaging and equally elaborate stories, the products, one-of-a-kind, are definitely worth checking out. The store itself, designed to look and feel like a pawn shop, are both dotted and doted on with random but cohesive intricacies: doll heads, plastic fish, beakers, and makeup cases.

    Trust me, the place and the products don’t get any “instaworthier” than this!

    Itching to get your hands on some TCFS treats? Keep reading for a quick run down on some of their goodies!

    Inspired by the father of modern sculpture, Auguste Rodin, Art Class exemplifies his penchant for realism. The products, named after artsy terms like Impasto, pays homage to art techniques that include lighting and contouring. Art Class’ CrĂ©ateur du contour is definitely a win in my book. Not only is the bronzer soft to the touch, but it also creates the most natural look when applied.

    Sienna, Emmy, Joy, and their cat, Max, are all superstars of the TCFS line, Artify. My favorite gal? Definitely Joy with the short blonde hair. She likes photography and looks like she gives zero effs. Oh, and as a cat lady, I totally give Max a big thumbs up.

    Artify products are meant to make your life easier with their two to three-in-one purposes. Their blush, for example, comes with a cushion puff tucked neatly away on the bottom of the compact and their BB foundation also comes with both concealer and highlighter!

    You’ve probably seen the TCFS Dinoplatz line online or at actual Sephora stores. If not, shame on you! The rad packaging tells an endearing story of dinosaurs coming back to find a new home in New York City. Flowers blossom as the clumsy creatures make their way through Manhattan (minus a couple accidents here and there because they’re just so big)!

    A cute way to remind you to take all that makeup off your face (especially at night when you’re really too lazy to), the Ka line goes by one simple motto: “Take care of it while you have it. Life is beautiful because it’s short.”

    Cleanse, cleanse, and cleanse, folks! Your skin will thank you.

    Don’t forget to let me know what you think if you end up stopping by!

  • The Softest Spot in NYC: Lou & Grey

    Showing Our Soft Side

     

    ‘Twas walking through Flatiron earlier this week and was struck by an abundance of greenery on 5th avenue where concrete and pedestrians typically rule.  No…it wasn’t a flower shop or anything like it.lg4  Instead, to my delight I discovered a new treasure for women seeking cozy casual-wear to find some inner bliss.  The store: Lou & Grey, of LA-fame, saying hello to me in the friendliest of ways.

     

    HELLO, LOU & GREY!

     

     

     

    The shop girl told me it’s Lou & Grey’s first NYC location (fun) and I was eager to see the goods on display.  From sweaters, to sweats, sports bras, and all the items in between, comfort and coziness is the focus here, so it’s every woman’s paradise.  It’s really an everything store built around the idea that woman should have stylish, comfortable clothes, at a good price point.

    Check them out at 138 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY, 10011.

    Here’s what I found inside:

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    Walls and walls of colorful, soft, cozy pieces ranging from pants, to tops, and sweaters.

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    Some pretty Uh-MAZE tees with coziness in mind.

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    Fun, colorful items for around the house.

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    A wall for nerds (hello, me).


    SHOP


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    Tons of friendship bracelets.

    And, of course:

    THE WARDROBE ROOM

    The pinkest, prettiest, softest changing room in NYC.  I wish I could pick it up, put it in my pocket and turn it into my personal oasis for clothes and cat naps.

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  • Recharge Your Mind By The Water

    …alongside views that even Drake would be jealous of!

    A workaholic, I always cram my days with chores, deadlines, happy hours, and quick brunches. In fact, I always feel so out of place with free time on my hands. The thought of nothing to do and nowhere to be not only gives me goosebumps, but also makes me extremely fidgety. Normally, I’d take that extra time to scroll through my social media–check the day’s accumulation of Snapchat stories, Instagram photos, and Facebook interactions. Recently, however, I’ve been trying to curb that habit.

    As much as I want to turn a blind eye, my social media dependency isn’t always the healthiest.

    Back in high school, my friends and I would go to Fort Totten Park to pass time. We’d sit on these huge rocks and stare into the water all while making short conversations, long conversations, or sometimes, no conversations at all. Sometimes, the movement of the water was enough. I’d even go there myself to de-clutter my mind after a breakup. Of course, I’d feel much better afterwards.

    With social media front and center in almost every aspect of my life, I forget how important it is to just stop and appreciate nature.

    Water, for one, has always given me loads of positive energy and good vibes. Being by the water can automatically de-stress and relax the brain into a more balanced and meditative state. Think of it as therapeutic downtime!

    If you live in New York City, you have to check out these water vies sans social media. No excuses, we’re practically surrounded by water!

    Fort Totten Park

    Bayside, NY

    Gantry Plaza State Park

    Long Island City, NY

    Battery Park

    New York, NY

    Okay, if you must, you can post pictures of these gorgeous views on Instagram. Your visit didn’t happen unless you uploaded evidence, amiright?

     

    Please let me know if you have a mindful place you like to visit. I’d love to check your spot out!

  • Have You Visited the Museum of Ice Cream Yet?

    I Scream, You Scream, We All Scream for Ice Cream ?

    Yeah, I know, it’s basically impossible to get tickets to the Museum of Ice Cream. This hip pop-up is on everyone’s Summer ’16 bucket list. Before you lose all hope and resort to scalping, however, word has it that the exhibition’s creators have been slowly pushing back the final day so I’d highly recommend signing up for ticket updates on their website!

    In the mean time, you can live vicariously through my short and sweet experience. Close your mouths and breath through your noses. Otherwise, I guarantee a healthy amount of drooling!

     

    You get a little scoop of ice cream as soon as you walk into the museum. On the left is glorious picture of my purple scoop of taro ice cream straight from the Chinatown Ice Cream Factory.

    They serve ice cream from different New York City parlors throughout the exhibition so make a mental note of the places you’d like to visit once you leave the pop up!

    *Chinatown Ice Cream Factory is a personal fave of mine. Their almond cookie is to die for.

     

     

    After finishing my ice cream “admission scoop,” I was given an edible balloon with helium inside! You suck the helium out first, laugh at how funny your voice sounds, and proceed to enjoy the sugared goodness.

    I’m loving this waffle cone backdrop, by the way. A potential profile picture, perhaps!

     

     

    The sprinkle pool is a fan favorite! Unfortunately, they’re not real sprinkles, but they’re still super fun to swim in.

    After the pool comes a nice ice cream tasting. The museum staff gave me a small candy to chew on to change my taste buds. Then, after letting the candy dissolve, I was handed an ice cream cone with two slices of lemon garnishes. Let me tell you, I ate both slices of lemon, skin included, and it was not sour at all!

     

     

    Finally, the museum tour ended with a mini playground featuring an ice cream sandwich swing and an ice cream scooper seesaw!

     

    Is this place Insta-Worthy or what? Let me know what you think if you end up visiting!

  • Three Instagram-Worthy Spots to Visit this Weekend!

    Smize, Y’all! Oh, and werk! 

    I don’t know about you guys, but I’m always a big sucker for insta-worthy destinations. Feed on fleek? You betcha!

    Here are three super awesome places I scouted out for scenic pictures and dope backgrounds. Taking a social media cleanse? No worries! They’re also great places to visit in general.

    Blackbody Show Room

    25 Greene Street

    The Blackbody Show Room is home to the world’s first OLED (organic light-emitting diode) display. The space consists of two floors filled with all things lights. We’re talking incredible fixtures and mind-boggling chandeliers! Their “Orange Room” with “raining” lights is definitely a fan favorite.

    Plus, it’s that perfect backdrop for your new profile pic.

    And, admission to this French light installation is free! If you’re ever in the area, I highly suggest dropping by to relax your mind, body, and soul.

    MoMA PS1

    22-25 Jackson Avenue (Long Island City)

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    You can find this contemporary art museum in Long Island City, Queens. After walking through the colorful “Weaving the Courtyard” to get to the actual museum, I have to say, I thoroughly enjoyed everything the three-floored MoMa PS1 had to offer.

    Not gonna lie, there were some disturbing artworks, but I guess that’s just what contemporary art is.

    Otherwise, the museum has an incredible selection of art ranging from short films, to simple paints, to sculptures. Come with an open mind but you might want to leave the children you’re babysitting at home.

    Oh, and admission is free for all New Yorkers until October 2017 in honor of the museum’s 40th anniversary!

    SeaGlass Carousel

    State & Water Street (Battery Park)

    You need to check out the SeaGlass Carousel because it is the prettiest carousel I’ve ever laid my eyes on. Even though I’ve “been there” and “done that,” I gladly would do it all over again.

    Yeah, I know, it’s $5.00 for just a couple of minutes, but these glowing and rotating fish are so worth the mulah!

    Best of all, it’s gram-worthy day and night, inside and out!

    OTHER PLACES TO CHECK OUT

    • Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum
    • Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum
    • David Zwirner Gallery

     

    Pray tell, what are some of your favorite gram-worthy spots this summer?

  • The Tea That Contains So Matcha Benefits

    Are you matcha-obsessed?

    Raise your plastic cups. You know, the ones dripping wet in condensation? The same ones that are cold to the touch? Clear plastic cups filled to the brim with ice cubes? Creamy caffeinated concoctions, bursting with flavor? Matcha. I’m talking matcha. So here, let’s cheers to that!

    As of late, New Yorkers have been riding a green tea latte wave. It’s super rad and super cool because your girl happens to be one of those New Yorkers. Not gonna lie, I used to think of matcha as the green, poorly stirred-powder at the bottom of my Starbucks drink. I wasn’t wrong, but I was basic.

    After doing a little more research, however, I’ve learned that matcha is processed green tea grounded into powder form. Rich in antioxidants and plenty of other health benefits, the powder also contains extended release caffeine and natural calming agents.

    Did you know that one cup of matcha tea is equivalent to 10 cups of green tea?

    Crazy, right? One cup of matcha contains 70 milligrams of caffeine as compared to the average 35 milligrams you get in a regular cup of green tea.

    Well, ANYWHOO, I discovered two must-visit matcha spots and you’re coming along for the adventure.

    MatchaBar Chelsea

    256 W 15th St, New York, NY 10011

    MatchaBar Chelsea is a cute little shop with an intimate ambiance. They serve a wide selection of drinks that range from Classic Matcha to Summer Matcha. Surprisingly the lack of seating space does not deter people from getting their caffeine fix! In fact, customers are usually in and out of here with a drink, if not two, in hand. Did I mention they give out free stickers?

    Behold, the Watermelon Basil in all of its shining glory. If you look closely, you can see the watermelon juice at the bottom. This was a particularly interesting drink. The combination wasn’t what I expected, but it definitely worked!

    I like my drinks on the sweeter side so I added a dash of simple syrup. Note: Most matcha drinks come unsweetened, but you can adjust them based on your taste buds. Not bad, not bad. I would definitely come back to try their Mint Lemonade before the summer ends.

    Cha Cha Matcha

    373 Broome St, New York, NY 10013

    Cha Cha Matcha is all things Cali in the heart of Chinatown. Their pink-and-green themed store goes hand-in-hand with their staff’s bubbly personalities. Customers usually come here for matcha drinks and soft serve.

    Don’t let my picture fool you! There’s actually more seating at the back of the cafĂ©. Best of all, it’s totally insta-worthy. They’ve got a ton of natural lighting.

    I decided to try something completely different from my usual matcha latte so I went with their Matcha Lemonade. Best decision ever. It honestly was so good that I trekked back, a Queens girl and all, two days in a row, for their summer elixir. Made with the perfect amount of citrus and garnished with a lime and mint leaves, this virgin matcha mojito is truly godsend.

    Let me know if you’d like me to try creating a matcha drink of my own or if you ever visit one of these sweet spots!

  • Listen: THE COVETEUR on LADYLOVIN’

    GUYS.  So excited.  So, so, so excited.  On this week’s episode of my LadyLovin‘ podcast I got to welcome my friend Stephanie Mark, the co-founder of The Coveteur on the show!

    IMG_6001

    Stephanie Mark, Jilly Hendrix, Greta Titelman, Lo Bosworth (from left to right)

    We chatted about everything: start-up world, scary people, body image issues, relationships, and what we like to wear in the bedroom.  It’s a great episode so please give it a listen and subscribe!


    LISTEN to The Coveteur on LADYLOVIN’ HERE


    Photo via TheCoveteur.com – an image of Paloma Elsesser’s Closet.  P.S. You can listen to Paloma’s episode of LadyLovin’ HERE.

  • TheLoDown