an eco-chic retreat | Tulum, Mexico

Well hello.

How I’ve missed you, and missed blogging.  I thought I would return this year by sharing some notes from a recent trip to Tulum.  It was a trip that I planned to ring in a milestone birthday.  I feel very lucky to have a birthday right after new year’s, as it has caused me to habitually kick-off each calendar year with self-reflection and goal setting as a result of entering a new year and turning one year older within a few days of each other.  This year was a milestone so I wanted to fuel my passion for wellness with a trip that would enable me to stop and appreciate everything I have, while setting intentions for a new year and new decade in my life.

There were a few parameters that were important to me for this trip:

  • Must be warm weather in January & and must be on a beach
  • Must have healthy, clean food
  • Must have Yoga daily

A few of my girlfriends decided to join me for this adventure, and as we conducted research for places that would meet the above criteria, we landed on a place called Amansala in Tulum, which offered all of the above and then some.  It was 6 days of paradise with morning meditations, walks on the beach, yoga and an array of other fitness classes, very healthy food in a clean simple way, as well as incredible mayan healing treatments, and sightseeing  – it was exactly what I we needed.  I wish I took more photos during my time there, but the truth is, it was such a transformative experience, I often left my camera behind so I could soak it all in and completely unplug.  Knowing that I wanted to blog about this trip and share it with you, I did manage to capture some highlights.

The accommodations at Amansala are rustic yet beautiful and there are no bad views.  This was my  bedroom in our suite.

hotel room | amansala

Meals were hosted here, and the view was even more beautiful in person as you can imagine.

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You could do as much as you wanted to during the days, and this is what an average day list of options looked like.

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The sunrises and sunsets were magical, {as they all are}, and I didn’t miss a morning sunrise during this trip.  The morning mediations during sunrise were an incredible way to start each day.

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Each day meditation was followed by a walk on the beach.  Tulum beach is lined with beautiful chic hotels and with the sound of the waves and the stunning scenery, I found these walks to be incredibly soothing.

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Dressing and packing for this trip was easy and simple.  All you really need is a bathing suit, a coverup that you would pretty much spend most of your time in when not going to classes, yoga gear, great shades and a great sunscreen {how refreshing!}.  Here are some of my picks for not only Tulum but the beach this year.

Tulum | Mexico

Rimless Mirrored Iridescent Ray-Ban Sunglasses {just bought these and love them} | Marysia scalloped bikini | coverup {love the side tie details and subtle print} | My go to clean sunscreen for the face | great Balenciaga studded flat sandals for the beach or dinner

This is a trip and experience I am so grateful for, I would go back in a minute and met some incredible people from around the world during my time there.  I came back with clarity, a whole new set of healthy recipes, and in better shape than I was when I left. If you are looking for a healthy, escape somewhere beautiful along the ocean, I would highly recommend Amansala.

Wishing you a beautiful day, and a Spring filled with endless opportunities,

~Emmanuelle
Xo

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BELIEVE!

Merry Christmas wishes to you!  I hope you will have the opportunity to fully enjoy your holiday and celebrate with the people who matter most to you in life.  This Christmas will be a full moon, so it is a perfect time to make a wish or set an intention. I may be a dreamer but I believe in the magic of Christmas.

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Believe in love, believe in magic, believe in others, and most of all, believe in yourself.

Wishing you a Merry, Merry Christmas,
~Emmanuelle
Xo

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Holiday Gift Guide | For Her

We are down to the wire, but still not too late to order on-line thank goodness.  I just started my holiday shopping yesterday and need all the time I can get to finish it.  For today I have put together a gift guide for her.  Great gift ideas for Mother’s, sisters, daughter’s, girl-friends, and even for yourself.

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A modern throwback {also love this one} – both 30% off with code SHOPNOW | $89.50 Continue reading

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Holiday Gift Guide | For Him

Some fun, and what I hope you find to be good ideas for the special men in your life.  This gift guide covers the wine enthusiast, the car fanatic, and a range of thoughtful gifts for him.

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airplane cocktail shaker | $100 {the bottle stopper $20 that goes along with it is pretty cool also!} Continue reading

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a fun fashion find

I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving and were able to enjoy your weekend without getting too wrapped up in the holiday craze just yet!  Yesterday I was cutting through the mall on my way home and stumbled upon a fun fashion find that I had to share with you.  You may remember me sharing this image on my blog last year.  I was, and still am really loving the idea of a navy faux fur coat.  I happen to love navy blue, it is a color that is rich and very flattering on a number of skin tones, and it’s not black or off white which can be refreshing, especially during winter months.

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Yesterday I found it at Ann Taylor of all places!  I haven’t been in their store in years, but Continue reading

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Holiday hostess gifts

Given that Thanksgiving is next week, I thought it would be fun to kick off the season {which has officially started} with gifts for the gracious hosts & hostesses opening their doors to us. Hostess gifts are always important, especially during the holiday season, {a busy time for everyone}, anyone who hosts a party or dinner deserves a festive token of appreciation. When it comes to hostess gifts, or any gift really, I try to select items with a lense of thoughtfulness and practicality.

This gift guide includes gifts ranging from $15 to just under $100 and is a roundup of my picks for the holiday season {scroll to bottom for links}.

2015-holiday-hostess-giftsa beautiful hand soap | $21.50
for the candle connoisseur | $76
a high quality kitchen staple {sea salt} | $18
macaron making kit | $23.99
pretty stationery | $36.00
gorgeous candles | $84
a fabulous bar tool | $41
an organic cordial | $15
mr. & mrs. placecard holders | $98
style & substance {rosemary topiary} | $60
the most beautiful box of chocolate ganaches | $55
a personalized book of toasts | $95

~Wishing you a beautiful Wednesday,
Emmanuelle
XO

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a few of my favorite things | november

It’s mid-November and as you can see from my board,  fall comfort is on my mind especially for when it comes to being home and entertaining.  This month I am inspired by healthy comfort food recipes, beautiful warm sweaters, and Thanksgiving table scapes.

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1 | I am really loving Tory Burch’s take on the fisherman sweater this year, with the fringe Continue reading

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hosting a fall dinner party | what to make & wear

ahhh that crisp fall air.  While I never pretend to enjoy the cooler weather, I do enjoy the cozy-ness that comes with Fall. It’s a great time to host dinner parties at home and enjoy ingredients from the farmer’s markets that take us well into November.

While the desire for comfort food kicks in with cooler temperatures, I still work to create fulfilling warm meals that are healthy. This week I have been planning for an upcoming dinner party and have put together a menu that includes a fabulous seasonal ceviche, a comforting millet risotto which I shared before – it has the texture of a pasta risotto with cheese, yet it is made with a grain and no dairy so it is very healthy,packed with nutrients and equally satisfying.  And for dessert we are going to indulge a bit – I couldn’t resist the cornucopia presentation and a chance to incorporate my favorite ice cream.

I have been gravitating towards navy blues, golds and white for a table scape color palette for Fall, and love the design of these menu cards available through paperless post which I will be setting at each place for the dinner.  I am planning a similar color palette for Thanksgiving this year as well {will share all Thanksgiving table details in a future post}.

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apple and radish ceviche | millet risotto with artichokes and mushrooms | apple phyllo cornucopias {I have a favorite cinnamon ice cream from Picco in the South End.  They make it locally and it is the best ice cream I’ve ever had, so I will leave it to the experts and will order it from them – plus I think cinnamon ice cream will be beautiful with apples, walnuts and phyllo and an unexpected surprise from vanilla} Continue reading

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my new go to breakfast

With my new routine and all, I have been trying to plan ahead with at least a few meals per week.  It is much easier to eat healthy when you work from home than it is when you are on location for the day, and the only way to stay ahead of it is to plan in advance.

I came across a few recipes for breakfast cookies recently and am hooked on the concept because you can make them ahead and have a healthy option all week as you are running out the door.  I tried my first batch a few weeks ago and have a new batch in the oven as I type this.  These cookies are loaded with nourishing oats, ground flaxseed, and a healthy dose of fruit & berries.  They are sugar free and can be gluten free if you use gluten free oats {I elected not to} they are a  nutrient & superfood rich option for breakfast on the go.

POISE. | breakfast cookies

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A few of my favorite things | September

Wow September 1st!!  I know I fell off the face of the blogosphere for the past two months – it has been for good reason. This summer was truly a changing of the tides for me in many aspects.  Now that I am settling into some new routines, I am back and promise to continue to share my inspirations with you.

One of the biggest changes this summer has been that I had the incredible honor of being asked to oversee Public Relations for Neiman Marcus Boston in July {pinch me}!  As you can imagine this exciting full time role has me on a new schedule, and now that I am feeling more adjusted, you can expect to hear from me on a regular basis. My plan is to post once a week – this will give me enough time to be successful in my new exciting capacity, while giving me the opportunity to continue to share my inspirations with you from an entertaining, fashion and lifestyle perspective.  I can’t thank you enough for staying with me through this exciting journey over the past 3 years, I am so grateful to each of you and look forward to what’s in-store – thank you.

And now back to the fact that it is September!  I am definitely holding onto these precious last days of Summer with all of my strength.  It has been such a beautiful summer, I hope you’ve been able to enjoy as many sunny days as possible. This month I am inspired by some pre-fall tones of caramel and off white, new recipes for entertaining, and the latest read in health and wellness.

A few of my favorite things | September 15

1 & 2 | I love the look on the right.  It is both elegant and iconic.  A simple solid Continue reading

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