Glass House

726 Comments »   Posted by gretchen |  Category:Architecture, Travel

We all know I could make some reference to people hurling rock-like objects, but let’s just focus on this beautiful house in Paris, shall we?

The “House of Glass” or “La Maison de Verre”. Photo: Francois Halard

This article from the New York Times lays out the story better than I can. There is also a great article in the September/October 2011 issue of Australian magazine Inside Out.

Also, the man that owns the house bought one of the three Maisons Tropicale and then donated it. I can’t find a picture that confirms which one he bought, but they all look something like this:

Found at Mondo Blogo. Original source unknown.


Warm and Cozy Bags

793 Comments »   Posted by gretchen |  Category:Fashion, Travel

A few blanket-inspired bags to keep all your things warm while you travel this winter.

Pendleton Portland/ Madewell/ LL Bean Signature/ Novica


Downtown Riverside

No Comments   Posted by gretchen |  Category:Inspiration, Travel

Mabel took us to downtown Riverside to check out the Mission Inn on our last day of the trip. I wasn’t expecting such an amazing experience; there is so much history in this hotel, and I felt like I was wandering around a European museum. Our trip was also exciting because Mabel just kept opening doors and going past the signs that read “Hotel Guests Only”. If there was a door, she tried to open it! I know I wouldn’t have done that on my own, but we saw so many cool things because of her- thanks Mabel!

The reception area; stained glass detail in a banquet room.

The previously mentioned banquet room (love the ceiling!); stained glass window in the Presidential Lounge.

The center courtyard; Mabel trying to open a door.

What’s that? Only an effin chapel at a hotel!

Our reward for sneaking up to the third floor: awesome vistas.

The next block over from the hotel is the downtown Riverside library, which Mabel accurately predicted I would like.

The zig-zags on that staircase made my heart skip a beat.

I’m guessing Riverside isn’t in the top ten of tourist destinations in California, but I was really happy to walk around the downtown, and I’d love to stay at the Mission Inn some day.


Eight Thousand Feet and Counting

894 Comments »   Posted by gretchen |  Category:Photos, Travel

So I managed to take around 400 pictures while we were in California for three and a half days, which means I have way more photos to share! This could turn into a five part series if I’m not careful.

We went up the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway, which goes up to the top of Mt. San Jacinto (elevation 8,516 feet). In general, it’s usually 20 degrees cooler at the top than it is in the city, so everyone brings sweatshirts. I could also feel myself getting winded kind of quickly, which we will also blame on the elevation, and not the fact that I haven’t been to the gym in a few months.

As the great Emily Henderson would say, “I’m a giant!”

A little bit of the NW in PS.

Proof that you can get reception at the top.

All photos by Gretchen Lilly.


Palm Springs Birthday

943 Comments »   Posted by gretchen |  Category:Photos, Travel

We had a long weekend in California, and I was lucky enough to spend my birthday in one of my favorite cities, Palm Springs! We stayed at the Ace again, with our friends Frank and Mabel. The whole trip went by so quickly, and I had a great time, but I’m already thinking about going back because there are more things I want to see and do in PS.

When we visited last December, the weather was much colder, and the sky was a little gray, so I was really happy to see Palm Springs in the sunshine.

The food and drinks at Las Casuelas were perfect for a birthday dinner.

The pool was bumpin’ because there was a shoot going on for American Eagle at the hotel, and all of the folks involved were staying there, AND there was some sort of hipster bowling alley reality show previewing that night.

My new camera made documenting the trip really fun, although “paparazzi” was thrown my way a few times. I have loads more photos to share from the trip, so check in later.

All photos by Gretchen Lilly.


Wish We Were There

1,727 Comments »   Posted by gretchen |  Category:Inspiration, Travel

Mama Shelter, Paris

Ruschmeyer’s, Montauk

The Parker, Palm Springs

After watching this little video, I think I’d bring my own bottle of Clorox before unpacking:

PPS Gene Autry from STEVEN PIPES on Vimeo.

Seriously, check out all the little room videos on The Parker Palm Springs website. I think the video for “Villas” is supposed to be the ladies version of The Hangover.

From: Mama Shelter, Refinery 29, The Parker Palm Springs


Costa Rica

1,254 Comments »   Posted by gretchen |  Category:Travel

We made some new friends, got some sun, managed to be stung by a bee and a scorpion, and overall had a great vacation.

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Running Away From Winter

1,300 Comments »   Posted by gretchen |  Category:Inspiration, Photos, Travel

I’ve been wanting to stay at the Ace Hotel in Palm Springs since Laure blogged about staying there back in August of 2009. Oh boy, did I want to go there. Well, I devised little scheme that involved driving down to Palm Springs in our 1980 Mercedes station wagon, sleeping in said wagon, driving without the assistance of cruise control, and making do with air vents that like to blow cold air when it is cold outside and warm air when it is warm outside. I pitched my little scheme, and Brian was in (it didn’t hurt that both of our places of employment were closed between Christmas and New Years).

The motto for the trip was: “Don’t stop driving until it’s sunny” and we didn’t see sun until our second day on the road. It just got nicer and sunnier until we arrived in Palm Springs.

Except, our first full day in Palm Springs was basically rainy and windy.

However, bad weather in Palm Springs is the type of weather people in Seattle will wear shorts and flip flops in (I’m not kidding) so we had fun driving around looking at all of the mid-century modern architecture.

We stopped in Santa Rosa for New Year’s Eve, and stayed at the Fountaingrove Inn, a place I stayed as a flight attendant.

I ate what was probably the fanciest meal of my life, the highlight being the lavender creme brule for dessert, at the hotel restaurant.

We’ve been back home for a week now, but I’m already scheming on how to go back to Palm Springs and Santa Rosa for some more vacation time.


Return to Seabrook

944 Comments »   Posted by gretchen |  Category:Inspiration, Travel

Two years ago I visited Seabrook with a friend, and I’ve been wanting to go back ever since.  To celebrate our birthdays, Brian and I went for the weekend.  Wow, what great weather we had!  We enjoyed the beach, and rode bikes around Seabrook.  We also had some great, fresh seafood.  It was just the perfect little getaway.

I highly recommend it, if you have the means.


Alaska Day Trip

1,782 Comments »   Posted by gretchen |  Category:Travel

Remember Northern Exposure?  The one hour drama/ comedy from the early 90s?  I sure do; they show re-runs every weekend on one of my local stations.  I recently declared it my favorite re-run; mostly because it’s just a good show, but in part because of where it was filmed.  Roslyn, Washington was the filming location for the show’s fictional town of Cicely, Alaska.

We went out to Roslyn over the holiday weekend for a quick day trip.  It only took about 80 minutes to get there, and it doesn’t take too long to see the town.  Northern Exposure premiered about 20 years ago, but the town looks just the same; they even kept the KBHR radio booth preserved.  We weren’t the only tourists with cameras, and the locals were really welcoming to all of us Northern Exposure fans.  It was a really fun little trip- I highly recommend it, if you have the means.