Holidays in Romania, we did it again. This time we started with Bucharest, where we have spent the New Years Eve, and then travelled to Brasov to see C’s family. We visited and saw so many nice things to share with you.
Like last year, we ate very very well in Romania. I am a Vegetarian and C is a Pescetarian. The dishes you can see below are all without meat. 🙂 Now lets have a look at what we liked.
A3 is the former A1, a great place to start your day, have a snack or meet your friends for an afterwork drink. I am in love with their bucket fries, literally a bucket full of fries. Another dish that I have ordered several times in the last week was the Baby Spinach Salad with Apple. Mmmmhhmmm, absolutely delicious.
SHIFT PUB, Bucharest
A cozy, beautiful bistro on a quiet street in the heart of the city. Thats what they say about themselves on their website. And I can only agree with that. Indeed a very cozy place. So far I have only been in Romania in Winter so I never had the chance to eat outside in the beautiful garden. But fingers crossed to hopefully visit Bucharest in Summer too.
An elegant, rather posh place to eat with delicious starters and pasta dishes. Of course I can only speak for myself 🙂 but thats what I liked to eat there. The Avocado Tartar starter is definetely something to try. Unfortunately I didn’t take a photo but I can show you the Pasta and sides dishes we had.
DEI FRATI, Brasov
This place has opened quiet recently and is a real game changer for Brasov. Hands down, these were one of the best house made pasta I have ever had. The interior design of the rather small but cozy place is very simple, with a touch of shabby chic. The restaurant is a family run business and one can really feel that when eating there. There is an open kitchen which I personally love. Watching the chef prepare your food is a really nice thing.
BISTRO DE L’ARTE, Brasov
Like last year it was cold and snowing so we had some warming teas, hot chocolates and snacks at the Bistro de l’Arte. A rather dark and old interior which brings you back to the last centuries and lets you relax and enjoy your stay. I loved the sweet pea soup. Something I can honestly recommend to try.
so, that was it from my first blogpost about Romania and also my first post for 2017. I hope it was helpful and inspiring. Let me know which places are your favorites. X
There a lot of things to do and see in Barcelona when it comes to art, music, architecture, culture in general. C and I, had few things in mind, few activities that were recommended to us or we read about. We were there for a week, so we tried to combine the delightful days at the beach, the lazy walks around the city during day and night time, the delicious dinners and drinks with museum visits, or architectural pilgrimages.
But before we start sharing some of these beautiful treats, I first need to mention that C is an architect and for him Barcelona is a real urban spectacle, he enjoyed a lot many of Barcelona´s streets, buildings, parks, plazas. According to his taste Barcelona is his favourite city when it comes to urban spaces, he considers Barcelona as the Mecca of urban life and urban design (that´s his opinion so let´s respect it 🙂 ). So I guess for those of you that are really interested in architecture and urban space, take some time to walk around the city, get it´s vibe, start understanding the structure, the scales, the corners, the details, the music of the city and it´s smell.
So long story short, here is our list of things to see in 7 DAYS IN BARCELONA.
The library is part of the Universitat Pompeu Fabras campus, the building is a former structure that was holding a water tank, it was designed in 1874 by Josep Fontsere and the static calculation were done by a young student of architecture, Antoni Gaudi i Cornet.
From the 1874 to nowadays the building had a very interesting history, sheltering a municipal asylum, fire service store, garage of the Municipal Police force, justice department archive. It became a property of the university in 1992. The architects that did the renovation and transformed the space in to a library are Lluis Clotet and Ignacio Paricio.https://www.upf.edu/campus/en/historia/aigues.html
C was amazed by the imposing structure, and the feeling of walking through a temple rather than a library, a temple of knowledge. This feeling reminded him of other retaining water designated structures that he found in India the water wells, which impressed him a lot radiating the same type of feeling of wandering through a sacred space.
The Fundacion Mapfre exhibition hall is located in Casa Garriga Nogués, which is a truly beautiful space and a great example of Catalan modernism. The house was built by the architect Enric Sagnier in the early beginning of the 20 th century for a family of bankers.
The exhibition hall was open to the public in September 2015 and so far it featured shows like the triumph of color, a beautiful expedition trough the impressionist paintings and the avant garde, from Van Gogh to Matisse, the photography of Hiroshi Sugimoto or the photography of Bruce Davidson.
C heard about the Hiroshi Sugimoto show and he was really eager to see it, unfortunately the show already left for Madrid, but instead we manage to see the show of the American photographer Bruce Davidson. We weren’t familiar with his work, but at the end of the tour we were really impressed. There is a chronological order that you need to follow, that opens pages of American and European history. It is a beautiful documentary about human life, a must see.
This piece is in Parc de la Creueta del Coll, which is situated in the very hilly side of Barcelona, reminding us of the streets of San Francisco. Far away from the tourist invasion (reachable with the metro) and nested in a residential area. The sculpture is big and impressive, reminding you of an ancient marine animal, that instead of finding itself in the water is levitating over in some kind of contemplation state. The very funny detail about this sculpture is that it is inside of a public children swimming pool. The sculpture is the work of Eduardo Chillida, a Basque artist coming from San Sebastian, formerly trained as an architect. C appreciates his work a lot.
Last but not least, Fundacio Juan Miro was a very nice surprise. Situated in Parc Montjuic, surrounded by beautiful nature and other touristic attractions, the museum is a quiet and rich artistic oasis. The building designed by the Spanish architect Josep Lluis Sert is hosting a good amount of Juan Miro´s work, plus contemporary art works from different artists that are collaborating with the foundation.
It is really an interesting mix of architecture, modern and contemporary art, that deserves a good two hours (at least). So if you are in love with art or just curious, write it down on your TO DO list and don´t miss it.
I hope you liked our tips for 7 DAYS IN BARCELONA. I can not wait to go there again. Please keep us posted about your favorite places to visit in Barcelona. X
LET’S SAVE THE PLANET, yes! I really started to live a more conscious life and want to share my tips with all of you. I hope you are also aware that our planet earth has a very hard time with us humans destroying it every day. Let’s be more aware and conscious. Whenever I say something in that regard I often get the question: But, what can I do? Well, there is a lot that everyone of us can do. In that blogpost I wanna raise awareness of producing less trash and using less plastic containers.
NO COTTON PADS AND LESS PLASTIC
1 JEMAKO makeUp remover around 39 CHF
2 LUSH Jason and the Argan Oil around 12 CHF
3 LUSH Buffy Body Conditioner around 13 CHF
4 ESSENCE quick&easy sponge nail polish remover
5 SOAP BARS Provence
NO COTTON PADS AND LESS PLASTIC
I am not using any cotton pads instead I
use the JEMAKO makeUp remover that I can wash and reuse or use old schoo wash clothes. I also use the JEMAKO cleaning pads for the house. They are perfect for stainless steel or cleaning the windows. In fact they have something for every purpose. Have a look at their website: www.jemako-shop.com
I use the ESSENCE sponge nail polish remover to remove nailpolish. It works great. There are so many advantages. Firstly you dont need any cotton pads, secondly your trash is not going to stink because you are not producing any trash at all. An other advantage is that it works super fast.
Instead of plastic shower bottles I use solid soap bars. We have spent some days in Cassis, France over Easter andI bought so many awesome soaps. Read my blogpost here >>
These soaps last very long and are awesome for travelling as they dont leak. I have found some great alternatives at ALNATURA. If you buy many at once you can store them in your closet or drawers to make your clothes smell nice.
I use solid shampoos and conditioner in order to reduce plastic. And I absolutely love the solid LUSH shampoos. My favorite one is JASON AND THE ARGAN OIL. I m still searching for a great solid conditioner. I didnt like the ones from LUSH and really gave them many tries. So in case you can recommend a great solid conditioner please let all of us know by sharing it in the comments below.
Make your own scrubs. I use coffee, sea salt and fresh vanilla. It makes a great scrub with many benefits for your skin. By recycling coffee and only using vanilla and sea salt/ regular salt makes it a very affordable scrub. I love to put my scrub in a mason jar and store it in my shower. I use it twice a week and my skin feels awesome! A separate blogpost on how to make your DIY scrubs will follow soon.
That was it. A very easy way to reduce trash and help our planet. At the moment you can read so much about zero waste and plastic free shops. I absolutely support this lifestyle and try to improve every day. I hope you found my tips helpful and am curious to hear from you. Have a lovely day. X
I was in Barcelona for a week. I went with C, the weather was perfect and both of us have already been to Barcelona. now I have some really delicious food tips to share with you. so without further ado, lets start MY BARCELONA FOOD TIPS.
MY BARCELONA FOOD TIP #1
BRUNCH & CAKE // FB
we had a lovely brunch at brunch & cake. when we arrived, it was really busy. we had to leave our name and wait. after 15 minutes we got a beautiful outdoor table and were ready to order. in case you are planning to eat there I would make a reservation.
we really loved the food presentation. all of our meals were served in different plates. well, in M’s case it was a shovel. 🙂 it was the first time we saw food being served in a shovel and we all thought its an awesome idea. so, what did we eat? we ordered: egg benedict, quinoa burger and avocado toast. mmhhmm, everything was super tasty.
SMS DELICES // FB
this is a spanish restaurant serving tapas but in a very elegant and modern way. I had the best BRAVAS (potatoes with a spicy sauce) and C loved his PULPO (octopus) on the sticks. its a tiny space but very cozy and relaxed with a good atmosphere. we felt almost like at home.
these are the BRAVAS that I was mentioning before. mmmhhmm, look at this creamy spicy sauce that covers the potatoes. and below that photo you can see the PULPO on the stick. we would absolutely recommend to eat at SMS DELICIES and try the BRAVAS and PULPO.
MY BARCELONA FOOD TIP #3
EL NACIONAL // FB
Passeig de Gracia 24
ooh wow. we did not expect such a beautiful space when we walked towards EL NACIONAL. its hidden between the houses at Passeig de Gracia. a place to relax for a moment and enjoy a traditional spanish meal or a refreshing drink. EL NACIONAL used to be a garage and was transformed to this very cozy hall with different restaurants and bars. I really hope that you so far enjoy my BARCELONA FOOD TIPS and I would love to hear from you. which are your favorite places to eat in Barcelona?
thats how the entrance looks like. lots of wood and green with a very nice wooden cobble stone floor. wow. look at this! I really have to go back and eat and drink something in all the different places inside the EL NACIONAL. I was so impressed with the decor so be prepared for lots of photos.
we chose to eat at the LA PARADETA, which was a very great choice. the GAZPACHO soup was one of the best I have ever had. unfortunately I totally forgot to take a picture. maybe because I was taking so many photos of the beautiful location. each restaurant or bar had their own style but everything fot very well together. the nicest thing of each place were the lamps.
the lavatories were really nice as well. a nice mix of materials and a lovely reuse of old pipes and faucets. there were big photos of how this place use to look like. the transformation of the garage to EL NACIONAL.
MY BARCELONA FOOD TIP #4
BOTAFUMEIRO // FB
C/Gran de Gracia 81
‘When the raw material is the best on the market, the only thing a chef need do is respect the product, using the right amount of heat and seasoning to arouse all its flavour and aroma.’
Moncho Neira, Botafumeiro’s owner and chef
BOTAFUMEIRO is a very elegant and very well known restaurant in the heart of Carrer Gran de Gracia. a lot of famous people have dined there and lots of photos are shown at the entrance. (Clinton, Bush, several football players and actors) the place is famous for its fish and sea food dishes. from the entrance the place looks like a normal restaurant. but by walking further I realized how big BOTAFUMEIRO was. there were so many different rooms and platforms. with the white dressed waiters I somehow had the impression of being on a cruise ship. It is a funny and lovely combination of The Grand Budapest Hotel and the The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou, two awesome Wes Anderson movies.
MY BARCELONA FOOD TIP #5
CAFE CAMELIA // FB
Calle Verdi 79
thats the place where we have spent our last night in Barcelona and both had an amazing dinner. the funny thing was, that we were looking for a place to eat and were walking down Calle Verdi reading the menus and checking the restaurants. so when I read their menu, I could not belive my eyes. I LIKED EVERYTHING ON THE MENU. thats a very rare thing to happen. and when C came to check the menu too, he finally found out why. CAFE CAMELIA is a vegetarian restaurant. well, now everything made more sense. lol 🙂
we ordered a QUINOA BURGER and COUS COUS VEGETABLE STEW and started with a fresh vegetables/fruit juice. awww, the food was delicious and the waiters were so kind and nice. I will def go back to this place. lets see how fast I can be back in Barcelona 🙂
so, that was it for MY BARCELONA FOOD TIPS. I hope you found them helpful. I took all the photos with my new HUAWEI p9 phone. I am very curious to hear about your favorite restaurants in Barcelona. please leave a comment below. X
Velafrica connects work and integration in Switzerland with development in Africa.
Since 1993 the Non-Profit Organisation has collected old, worn-out bicycles, refurbishing them with social institutions and exporting them to its partners in Africa.
there are 479 permanent and free collection points for bicycles across the country. Every year, an additional 50 collection events are organized.
thanks to functional recycling of our bikes, 350 tonnes of old metal is saved from the shredder each year.
360 unemployed and physically challenged people refurbish the donated bicycles and prepare them for transport to Africa.
in 2015, Velafrica sent 38 shipping containers with 17‘455 donated and reworked bicycles from Switzerland to Africa.
since 1993 over 140‘000 donated Swiss bikes have found a new owner. On average, four people benefit from the use of a bicycle.
Vocational Training & Jobs
by 2015, 106 youth completed an apprenticeship in bicycle mechanics. Bicycle workshops create jobs in repair and sales.
more info in this PDF here >> PDF
Velafrica has the support of 30 partners across Switzerland. Between Liestal and Brig, Bulle and Chur, a dense network of social enterprises work towards integrational work. in 2015, Velafrica started an export workshop in Liebefeld, Berne as an integrational project for refugees and migrants.
They work with 13 regional partners in Gambia, Ivory Coast, Ghana, Burkina Faso, Tanzania, Madagascar, and Eritrea. This partnership is done with non-profit and selected small businesses. We foster a relationship based on economic collaboration to promote social entrepreneurship.
“bycicle reduces poverty”
The bicycle is an affordable alternative that spares people from walking. In cellars across Switzerland there are many bicycles that remain unused. In the developing regions of Africa however, cheap forms of transport are scarce. The recycled bicycles from Switzerland improve local access to education, health care and economic opportunities. After research done by Velafrica in Burkina Faso and Tanzania, mobility was found to be the most important factor in overcoming poverty.
I am so happy that I walked into Angela during the ECO festival in Basel and it makes me even happier to share this awesome project with all of you.
T +41 (0)31 979 70 50
Thank you dearest Martina for sending me a copy of your amazing book called: LIEBLINGSMENSCHEN. I was a big fan of these friendship books and unfortunately I have no idea where I have my old one. I love the idea of having all my friends in one book. Something haptic, besides facebook, where you can see what kind of plans your friends had, what they are doing now and how they looked as a teen. So I hope by now you somehow have a clue what I am talking about. LIEBLINGSMENSCHEN is a friendship book for adults.
“friendships make the world better and life more beautiful.”
I can totally agree with that. friendships are very important. Looking at this blank book makes me think about my old friendship book. What did I want to become when I grow up? LOL, I wanted to become a marine biologist. and I am sure that I was not the only one with that dream in mind. But things came very differently, as always, and I ended up studying Post-Industrial Design at the Institute HyperWerk in Basel and am the blogger of isawsomethingnice.ch. 🙂 And now there is a new question to answer: what do I want to do when I am retired? Such a good question, thanks for asking, Martina.
So every friend gets to fill a double page. It starts with: ME, MYSELF & I. In this part it is about your names/nicknames when you were born, what you wanted to be, what you are and what you want to do when you are retired. Followed by BACK IN THE DAYS. There you can tell a bit about your childhood, your favorite song on repeat and where you have so far travelled to. The next page starts with RIGHT HERE, RIGHT NOW. Here you can write about current things like, whats in your fridge at the very moment or you can share what makes you happy. Last but not least the part about YOU & ME. When and how did we meet? Things that I admire about you and you get the possibility to share something from the past. Do you remember…
Aaawwww, I am so happy to have one of these books! I can not wait to start giving it to my friends to fill out. it is a wonderful present idea, thank you again Martina. <3
Until July 5th you can get your copy for 29.90 CHF instead of 34.90 CHF. So it starts with a friendship price and by the way July 5th is also Martinas birthday, yay! Thats all so neat!
click here >> http://www.vonschenker.com/shop/
1 VIKTIGT tray (found via IKEA)
4 DRILLING MACHINE
- 5 SAND PAPER (optional)
another simple DIY that I have made with another cool piece that I have found at IKEA. I love to use things a bit differently, and thats why we use a cutting/chopping board for a tray today.
I am sure that some of you, including me, love to hang out on the couch and drink tea or whatever. my problem is always where to put my cup of tea so that it is close to me but on a solid spot. thats how I got the idea to make something solid, the perfect solid tray.
start by drilling four holes, two on each side. I used a hole puncher to measure the distance between the holes. also make sure to not drill too close to the edge or the wood may break, and not too far into the center, as you want the holes to be on the cut side of the tray. another thing I did was to keep the plastic on the board to avoid scratches.
use a piece of sand paper to smoothen the driled holes.
measure enough rope so you can put your hands around the handles and have enough to tie a knot. loop the rope thru the holes and tie knots at the ends.
thats it, very simple and easy, right? I had so much fun creating this DIY and I hope you all like the way it turned out. in case you did something similar or feel inspired to make your own tray please leave a comment below, I love hearing from you. X
and now lets have a look how you can use our newly made DIY in action. my intention was to use it for drinking tea on the couch and be sure that the tea wont spill but now I saw how cute it can look as a simple presentation board. so as you can see the options to use are endless.
that was it from today. I am looking forward to your comments and am sure that there will soon be another DIY feat. IKEA on the blog. stay tuned. X
finally spring is here and this is the time to start decorating your balcony. like last year I also grow tomatoes this year and somehow I was not so satisfied with the regular plant pots that I have found. thats when I had the DIY idea to make my own pots, or lets say the idea for pimping the pots.
lets see what we are going to need for this PIMPING THE POTS DIY:
pots KALASA (I found them via IKEA, small 14.95 CHF / large 19.95)
rope (I found it at JUMBO)
its very very simple and easy to find all of these things. and in case you dont like the white pots you can spray paint them before starting the pimping DIY. I love white and therefore I leave them the way they are.
take your pot and ropes and place them on a table or floor. then I wrapped the rope twice around the pot and made sure to have enough rope left to tie the knot.
cut the rope with your scissors and seal the ends like in the photo above. this will prevent the rope from opening and will make the knot look a lot neater.
tie a sailor knot like in the photo above. start with a normal knot and then do the opposite to the ends. this will create such a lovely result on your simple white pots, voila, thats it!
I absolutely love the result of this pimping the pots DIY. I continued these steps and made four pots for the balcony. that was a very easy DO IT YOURSELF and I am curious to know if you like it, so please comment below and in case you are doing this too please share your photos with me via my social media channels. I always love to hear from you. X
what a funny title! RIVIERA ESCAPE is one of the new YANKEE CANDLE scents they came out with and also the name of the current candles collection:
OLIVE & THYME
SEA SALT & SAGE
so let me quickly describe the scents as best as I can, you may know that this is not my best skill, but anyways, lets see which candle scent is my favorite.
I absolutely love the scent of the RIVIERA ESCAPE candle, it is extremly fresh and clean. somehow this reminds me a bit of the clean cotton and midsummer night candles from previous collections. the SUMMER PEACH candle is amazingly fruity, a bit too fruity for me, but nevertheless it does not smell artificial and I can smell real peaches! OLIVE & THYME would be my go to summer evening balcony sitting time candle. mmhhm, I love it and I would say that its a very nice balance in between thyme and olives. last but not least I want to describe SEA SALT & SAGE, this scent I got not in the candle version but as a WAX MELT. you can either use an old oil lamp or find other suitable melt warmers. its very easy, all you need is a wax melt, a wax melt warmer and a normal rechaud candle.you put the wax melt in the wax melt warmer, lid the candle and wait for the wax to melt and your room to smell nice.
my favorite candle is the RIVIERA ESCAPE. I am sure that I am going to burn this next and am already looking forward to. shortly behind my favorite I would place the OLIVE & THYME candle. as I already said, this scent is more of an outdoor one and I will find a lovely place for it on my balcony. my third most favorite is the SEA SALT & SAGE wax melt and my least favorite is SUMMER PEACH.
these are the newest candles of the Riviera Escape collection and so far I have not burned any of these lovely candles as I still have two from the last collection. I am sure you will see my candles in future blogposts, as I love to use candles to decorate my blogger photos. stay tuned for more! X
I was invited by C&A to see the AW16/17 collection in Amsterdam and now I wanna share all my visited places with you, hence the title: MY AMSTERDAM TIPS. the photo below was taken by lovely Giséle from TEXTILREVUE, thank you for taking this photo, it was very nice to meet you! and now lets start with the delicious food and drinks I had.
CAFE & RESTAURANTS
mmhhmm, such a tasty vegetarian sandwich that I had at the Beurs Van Berlage café. a very nice place to either sit in the sun on the terrace in front or to warm up inside. I went there twice and had the chance to do both due to amsterdams april weather. the café is very close to the central station and here is some info that I found about its history:
“At the end of the 19th century, Amsterdam was doing well. Trade was flourishing and a growing number of people decided to move to the city. In 1896, the Amsterdam administration therefore decided to allow the construction of the new stock exchange to go ahead after all. The honour of developing this new building went to architect and urban designer Hendrik Petrus Berlage. Berlage designed a completely new building, its bell tower carrying the ‘Beursbengel’ (exchange bell) being the most prominent element. Berlage, being a staunch socialist, believed the stock exchange trade had a short lease of life. Yet he found a smart and creative solution for this dilemma: inspired by the Italian Palazzo Pubblicos, he decided to design the new stock exchange building in such a way that it could serve as a grand communal home, a public palace, after socialism had triumphed. He therefore built a sort of symbolic city hall, a ‘public palace’ that could temporarily serve as a stock exchange. Beurs van Berlage has a rich history of being the third stock exchange building of Amsterdam and being the host of the marriage of King Willem-Alexander and Queen Maxima”
a very cosy and nice place to have lunch or dinner. and let me tell you, the food is nothing what you have ever had before. special combinations and gorgeous decorations. the restaurant is located behind the central station and is open monday to saturday. my favorite part of the lunch was the dessert. mmmhhmm, the mix of frozen, soft, tart and sweet made my day!
this place is a bit further outside of the centre but is absolutely worth to take a cab or bus and visit this place. a huge hall with a ceiling height of at least ten metres. here is some info about its history:
”1897: a new century was beckoning, an industrial revolution was rageing, factories were shooting up everywhere. in amsterdam the first brick was layed for the pumping station. ever since 1851, the dune-water company had provided the people of amsterdam with fresh drinking water from the dunes at vogelenzang. through 23 kilometers of cast iron piping, it was pumped into the city where it could be bought outside the willemspoort at one cent per bucket. forseeing an imminent increase in water- consumption (in which case the capacity of Vogelenzang would prove insufficient), manager J. van Hasselt had plans drawn up for a new pumping station in amsterdam. In 1897, construction was started, and as early as 1900, the pumping station haarlemmerweg went into operation. behind the main building there were four underground reservoirs, each holding about 10,000 cubic metres of dune water. this water could be forced into the city through huge pipes in the cellar and the old watertower by four pumps in the engine room (now the restaurant). the spectacular engine room was renowned and people from everywhere came to see it. In 1941, a technical magazine spoke of “a well filled, symmetrical engine room that made a grand impression on the visitor and could be considered to be a jewel for the city of amsterdam.” the pumping station was kept operational until 1996. in the eighties, when it became trendy to convert vacated and restored ninteenth century industrial buildings into museums, theaters, restaurants, studios, offices and appartments, westerpark city council decided that a restored pumping station was to become the heart of a new car-free eco-area built in the former watercompany grounds. and so, on december 20th, 1996, café-restaurant amsterdam, situated in the old engine room, opened its doors to the public.”
this is the signature drink of the W Hotel lounge and as I dont drink alcohol I ordered the virgin version. it was as delicious as it looks! a rather posh lounge with very comfortable seating areas, an open fire place and a gorgeous view over amsterdam, thats what the W Hotel lounge has to offer and I am very glad that Mano took us there.
COFFEE & DESIGN
Adam and Paul are behind this very nice coffee place where you can also find Urban Outfitters goods. I found some interesting facts about them which proves that they really know what they are doing: great coffee!
“ADAM CRAIG is australian born and raised. while he remains a true-blue aussie at heart, the lure of new york’s cutting-edge specialty coffee scene soon grew too much for him, and before long he found himself heading over to see what all the fuss was about. it didn’t take long for rumors to become a reality when he saw the throbbing pulse of specialty coffee driving innovation and experimentation far beyond his wildest imagination in some of new york’s hippest coffee bars. not one to sit on the sidelines and watch, Adam soon set off on an entrepreneurial spree when he opened a string of his own inimitable coffee bars- ‘Variety Coffee’ in brooklyn in 2007, followed a year later by ‘Coffee Bar’ in brooklyn and eventually ‘Culture Espresso’ in the heart of manhatten with Paul Jenner in 2008. it wasn’t long before local hero The New York Times listed all three coffee bars in their ‘top ten all-time great coffee spots’ in manhattan and brooklyn. ultimately however, even the big apple proved too small to contain the dreams of this coffee serial entrepreneur, and in 2010 he sold up and set off over the horizon, this time with his sights on europe. in 2013 Adam and Paul opened Lot Sixty One which endeavours to be the netherland’s finest coffee bar and roastery.”
“PAUL JENNER is about as australian as they come. born and raised with a surfboard under his arm, he grew up carving his name into some of mother nature’s finest waves that rolled daily into his home town of sydney. but getting up to meet those early swells ain’t easy, and before long Paul was pulling espresso shots and earning his stripes in the horeca industry where he’s since been rocking it with the best of them for almost two decades. after founding and operating his own espresso bar back home, legend has it that a massive rip tide one day dragged Paul too far out from shore and brought him to america’s famed west coast surf belt, where he set up his next espresso bar in LA. always on the prowl for his next adventure, Paul soon headed on over to new york after hearing rumors that it offered respectable surf. well, while the verdict’s still out on that one, new york is where Paul opened Culture Espresso with Adam Craig in 2008. together at last, this dynamic duo perfected the art of running top coffee bars before relocating in 2012 to share the love with amsterdam, where Lot Sixty One receives the full double shot of aussie flair which has become the secret ingredient to making this place tick the way it does. today, Paul continues his search for the perfect wave – so if you see him wandering barefoot around oud west at 6am sporting a 10-foot longboard under his arm, you’ll know why.”
we had a great start into the day with hot tea at KOKO & Design. unfortunately I forgot to take a photo and thats why I had to hop to google maps and screenshot the location so you can at least see the house. KOKO offers a lovely mix of fashion and design accessories but let me tell you what I found via their website:
“the fashion at KOKO is selected by the two owners karlijn and caroline. with a strong vision and opinion about materials and quality they choose their designers. at KOKO you can create your own personal wardrobe. a combination of everyday basics combined with unique pieces.
the coffee at KOKO is roasted with love and care by the roasters of the antwerp caffènation. this microroastery and coffeebar is a statement in belgium and abroad. the roasters are always looking for the best quality specialty coffee of biological harvest. the love and passion for specialty coffee is at real place at KOKO coffee & design.”
PRJCT AMS is a multi-brand store for men, based in the heart of amsterdam’s city centre.
they carry an on-going mix of casual chic & quality garments in the mid- and high-end segment with a strong focus on the perfect basic. they offer an in-store made-to-measure sartorial suit service! quality is key and they salute innovative brands and upcoming designers alongside their private label and household names. brands: PRJCT AMS LABEL,
SSD | SUSUDIO
, VIVE L’HOMME,
when I was walking by this shop it was unfortunately closed but I got to sneak a peek thru the window and saw lots of really nice men shoes. and then I googled O’Quirey and found out about Jan Palmen:
“as a passionate sportsman and certified instructor, Jan Palmen entered the retail business as a store manager in at a sports apparel store in groningen, the netherlands. during this time his love of shoes became his passion.
his passion led Jan to establish his own athletic shoe and apparel store named COACH. under his leadership, COACH expanded its business to 69 retail outlets located throughout the netherlands and germany. in 2000, Jan Palmen sold COACH and devoted his energy to the development of a premium retail concept focused on shoes and apparel.
FOSBURY opened its flagship store in 2001 at assen and was elected “most beautiful store of the netherlands” that same year. FOSBURY meets the needs of its customers for distinctive quality and style through its premium products for men and women. from its own design studio Jan Palmen develops exclusive shoe and apparel designs for his customers.
it is at this studio that the O’Quirey line of shoes, boots and apparel was born. O’Quirey shoes, boots and apparel are being sold throughout europe and china.”
so that was it from my tips for amsterdam, I had an amazing time and want to thank all of you who made my stay so nice and welcoming. I hope you found these tips helpful and let me know which are your favorite places in amsterdam. X
I got my hands on these two bars of chocolate when I was in Bucharest during Christmas last year and I wanted to find out more about romanian chcolate. here is what I found out:
“the first romanian chocolate products with royal name were launched at Elisabeta Palace on April, 6, 2015. “Kandia Regal” is the name, including three sorts: milk chocolate named after Princess Margareta, dark chocolate with 55 pc cocoa named after Prince Radu and dark chocolate with 75 pc cocoa Peles Castle.”
“in Romania, for more than 120 years, the Royal House has encouraged the national chocolate production, each generation, starting with King Carol I and Queen Elisabeth attached their names to the Romanian chocolate. there was even a chocolate factory ‘Queen Mary’, set up in 1919.”
I only tried the 55pc and 75pc cocoa chocolate and they were super delicious, not too sweet and not too bitter. I personally liked the 55pc a bit better than the 75pc. not sure if I could tell the difference between this dark chocolate and the LINDT dark chocolate that I usually eat. so it def has some chance to be compared to swiss chocolate!
this morning I started with a delicious milky smoothie. I had frozen raspberries, a banana and milk and these are all the things one needs to make this very smoothie. its very simple and all you need in addition is a jar or jug and a stick blender. a very optional thing is to have a fancy paper straw. I found mine via DAISO, a japanese shop in San Francisco.
1/2 glass MILK
1 bowl RASPBERRIES
1 big BANANA
put everything in the jar and use the stick blender to mix everything. once you are happy with the consistency pour it in your favorite glass, add a straw and thats it!
I am a big fan of these biodegradable paper straws, they totally make my day! they make a simple glass of water look fancy and I love to drink my smoothies with a straw, the only down side is that they start to degrade or fall apart very fast, so make sure to either have enough in order to switch your straw every now and then or you have to drink fast, lol! have a good day! X
LEMONGRASS & GINGER
a great variety of scents with something for everyone! my favorite one is the MOONLIGHT as it is the freshest of them all. I love candles that smell like fresh washed laundry. somehow it reminds me a bit of Midsummers Night, another favorite of mine from last years collection. my second favorite ones are PEONY and LEMONGRASS &GINGER. where PEONY is very very floral LEMONGRASS & GINGER is very herbal and gingery a mix of them would be interesting and I will give it a try to light both of them next to eachother. a small candle burns between 25 and 40 hours, thats actually not bad at all considered that its the smallest size. (medium size burns 56-90 hours / largest size burns 110-150 hours) I buy my YANKEE CANDLEs at Pfauen or Coop City as I can use my SUPERCARD points there but I also saw them at MANOR or online directly via their webshop >> I am curious to know which one is your favorite. X
trim the wick – it should always be around 3-5 mm long in order to prevent smoking.
let the wax pool, meaning each time you burn your candle allow the entire top layer to become a fragant pool of liquid wax, like this you get the boldest scent possible and will also help to prevent tunneling.