Sunday, May 15, 2011

Music- 'Let's Not Play The Game' Maxwell

Travel- Modern Relaxation for Him + Her

It is often a misconception to believe that spas are just a favorite past time for women. Spa locations that are innondated with flowers, dizzying essence perfumes and background music that can sedate any active mind, have become the stereotypical, picturesque brochure appeal of many spas; no wonder the attraction often seems gender specific. We all have different ways to deal with the toils and pressures of our daily lives; some people enjoy sports, cooking, reading... and one's IMAGINATION can go on. With the expansion of TECHNOLOGY, it seems we ALL, men and women, searching for new ways to relax.

I must admit, however, a spa is not at the top of my list of ways for me to unwind, but these latest destinations have definitely caught my attention. The appeal?

Destination spas with thought provoking new activities and surroundings that EVERYONE can enjoy together. What can be better than relaxing with someone or people you LOVE?

The following are some of the interesting places I have recently learned about:


The Therme Vals, opened in 1996, is a hotel and spa built over the only thermal springs in the Graubunden Canton in Switzerland. Designed by Peter Zumthor, this destination hotel was created for a complete sensory experience.

The idea was to create a cave labyrinth and quarry structure that works with its natural surroundings to form bath rooms that lay below a grass roof structure half buried into the hillside. The Therme Vals is built from layer upon layer of locally quarried Valser Quarzite slabs. The local quarry became the driving inspiration for the design, and is used with innovative concepts that respect the local environment.

This space was designed for visitors to luxuriate and rediscover the ancient benefits of bathing. The combinations of light and shade, open and closed spaces make for a highly sensuous and rejuvenating experience. The informal layout of the internal space is a carefully and intentionally winding designed path which leads bathers to certain predetermined points but lets them explore other areas for themselves.

“The meander, as we call it, is a designed negative space between the blocks, a space that connects everything as it flows throughout the entire building, creating a peacefully pulsating rhythm. Moving around this space means making discoveries. You are walking as if in the woods. Everyone there is looking for a path of their own.” Peter Zumthor

The light reflections on the water, the steam saturated air, the unique acoustics of the bubbling water, the feeling of warm stones on naked skin, the ritual of bathing make Therme Vals an ideal location to explore and relax. 


Dar HI in Nefta, Tunisia, which is the fruit of the collaboration between Matali Crasset, Patrick Elouarghi and Philippe Chapelet, is a new concept of eco-retreat. The ownership team that brought you the Hi Hotel in Nice are at it again, this time in a place that, French influence aside, would seem to have very little in common with the Côte d’Azur. The result is an ecologically sensitive, brilliantly hued hotel, which just happens to be on the edge of the Sahara. DAR HI is an eco-retreat dedicated to well-being, the body and soul. The hotel was built in respect and harmony to its surrounding environment and in collaboration with the local craftsmen using only domestic materials for the furniture, decoration, and insulation.

"Dar HI is not a hotel nor a classical SPA but more a place where you can experience withdrawal and benefit from a spiritual thalassotherapy a few hours away from Paris and in the middle of the desert”, explains Patrick Elouarghi.

Philippe Chapelet and Patrick Elouarghi

Babouches Slippers

That is just why many will find it difficult to leave Dar Hi. Of the three types of accommodations, which include the pill houses, the troglodytes and the dunes, perhaps the “pill houses” are the most interesting. Each room is actually a stand-alone, elevated structure, with the bathroom and bedroom situated atop an outdoor seating area. The walls are mostly made of glass; as a result, there are panoramic views of the dunes and palm trees. Another interesting accommodation is the dune that opens directly onto the sand, and where guests are allowed to rearrange the furniture to their personal specifications. The hotel also includes a library, auditorium, communal spaces 2 spas and kitchen where guest can relax and enjoy. Throughout the hotel, people are required to shed their shoes and slip into babouches, traditional Tunisian slippers. Meals, drinks, and two spa treatments are included.

In keeping with the overarching philosophy of sustainability, ecology and fair trade are the foundations of DAR HI:

 The water is provided by a hot natural source that comes from the desert and that supplies the hammam as well as the swimming pool with hot water using geothermal energy (this hot water source also irrigates the oasis); in order to respect the environment, paint was replaced by construction lime from Théla using natural colorings; food is provided by the organic vegetable garden that is within the oasis (no fertilizers are used)
; the hotel has no imported materials and only uses local products for example the palm tree wood.

DAR HI’s project will also contribute to the preservation of Nefta’s oasis.

I love the concept of both of these retreats, to relax in harmony with your surroundings and with a clear mind. Is is not the ultimate goal of relaxation?

 I also enjoy the fact that the spas are not marketed only to women or gender specific, they both inspire a communal experience.

For more information about Therme-Vals visit their website at-
For more information about Dar-Hi visit their website at-



How do you like to unwind?

With Love,


Journal- Marvel In Truth

I stay up late again

Thinking of what has occured, past or present... I have come a long way and yet the path is still paved with promising journeys where time is but a TRANSIENT concept.

Heart open and mind ever so present... I live and MARVEL IN TRUTH and peace

With Love,


Friday, May 13, 2011

Images- Dressing Up to The Occasion

With Love,


Journal- Unreasonable by Saatchi & Saatchi

Something to THINK about!

With Love,


Fashion- Custom Fitted Jeans

I really enjoy a GREAT pair of jeans, one that HUGS all the right curves and FITS like a glove. A white tee, flip flops or barefoot is usually my favorite way to ROCK my jeans, but I will find any occasion to wear a pair I LOVE.

Shopping for jeans, however, can be a bit a of hassle; the fit can be a bit off and uncomfortable. I often remain very LOYAL to a brand and model once I find the perfect pair for my BODY shape.

So while we are on the subject, I recently DISCOVERD a new jeans concept company called 3X1 opening soon in Soho at 15 Mercer Street in New York City.

The CONCEPT is: Shoppers will be able to CUSTOMIZE their denim from a range of various fabric and hardware options.

Founder Scott Morrison and co-founder Eric Rothfeld will occupy a 7,300-square-foot space that will act as both a production facility and a shop, offering a behind-the-scenes look into the denim production process. Shoppes will get to choose from the various options and then from behind a glass wall, watch their personalized jeans being created before their very eyes.
The two-floor denim company space will include 22 sewing stations, an area for applying finishes, a washing facility, a showroom, and offices.

However, keep in mind, with everything custom made these days there is a price tag, but definitely something to feed one’s curiosity.

For more information about 3X1 visit their website at-


With Love,


Monday, May 2, 2011

Architecture- A New Outlook

I am always interested in finding out about architecture design firms with a new OUTLOOK on ways to bring to life hospitality, residential or corporate projects.

Recently, the VILLA AMANZI designed by ORIGINAL VISION based in Hong Kong and Phuket, is a modern home carved out of a rocky cliff overlooking the ocean. Here are some of the images:

I love structures that are in HARMONY with NATURE; that blends a personal touch with a cache.

For more information about Original Vision design firm go to-

Live by your own Rules!

With Love,