As with all restaurants make a reservation (for lunch too). Generally you can call day of and it is ok.
You can't beat this setting, located on a lovely deck at Gigaro beach. The beautiful hotel Lilly of the Valley has 2 restaurants on the beach Brigantine and Pepe's. Brigantine is a bit more formal. They have valet parking, as with every place make a reservation. Be sure to order the aperol spritz, the pizza is great with a side of vegtables.
Plage De Gigaro, 83420 La Croix-Valmer France
+33 4 22 73 22 51
This is one of my favorites for lunch, I return here every trip. I love the rustic vibe of this place, it is tucked away in a bay facing St Tropez. The setting is super casual, tables are on the sand. The food is great. Finish your lunch witth a dip in the sea.
Plage des Graniers Saint-Tropez
T. 04 94 97 13 43
We came here for my birthday back in September. I really like the food, fun vibe for a beach club. Come here for a leisurely lunch with rosé and then go for a dip after.
80 rue du Tibouren ,Parc d’Activité du Colombier 2,83350 Ramatuelle
+ 33 (0) 4 94 79 81 04
Château de la Messardière
This is a bit tricky, as you need to be staying at the hotel to come here. The setting is so pretty, I love the drive up to the hotel, it is situated on top of St Tropez and looks over Pampelone and the bay of St Tropez. They have a beautiful spa and boutique. Kate was having a treatment and so I hung out. Be sure to check the prices, as some treatments are way more reasonable then others.
52 Rue Gambetta
Domain de La Croix
This is my all time favorite winery in the region. The grapes are located between Domaine de la Reve and the sea. The winery is beautiful and it fun to go and taste their wines. They have 2 roses to choose from.
St Tropez Market
Held on Tuesday and Saturday. For the Saturday market you need to be there by 9:00 or you will not find parking. There are so many treasures here. One of my favorite things about staying in a home is that you can take advantage of all of the amazing food at the markets. There is a market everyday in a different town. The other one I really like is Ramatuelle. It is on Thursdays and Sundays. None of them are as big as the Saint Tropez market.
Schedule to all of the markets
Place des Lices
If you want a more Italian experience/ ambiance you need to go for the later reservation, after 9:00. The 7:00/ 7:30 reservations will be all foreigners. I highly recommend making reservations before hand. We had no trouble making the night before and day of reservations.
Trattoria de Gli Amici
The Trattotoria is managed by a social cooperative promoted by Saint'Egido Community. Disabled people, professionals and volunteers work here together because best things are made in friendship. We happened upon this restaurant on our trip back in 2014, it is located in a charming Piazza just a tiny bit off the beaten path with a very nice outside area. We immediately fell in love with the mission, the food is great and despite being in a very touristy area/ time only Italians were at the restaurant.
Piazza S Egido 6, Roma - Trastevere
PianoStrada laboratorio di cucina
Beautiful. Located just a few blocks from our hotel and just far enough from the touristy craziness to offer a quiet dinner. We walked by and fell in love with the interior. Flowers, candles, plants, dried fruits in beautiful jars cover every inch of the restaurant. The dinner was absolutely delicious. I had a special that was a pasta with seabass, it was beyond. I am drooling as I write this and the bread is amazing.
Via delle Zoccolette, 22, 00186 Roma RM
+39 06 8957 2296
Ristorante Santa Lucia
Beautiful terraced deck a few blocks from Piazza Navona. Great food and love the ambiance.
Largo Febo, 12, 00186 Roma RM
+39 06 6880 2427
Ginger Sapori e Salute
Great stop, in the middle of everything. Very nice salads if you need a change of pace from pizza and pasta. Very pretty modern interior.
St. Eustachio Square, 54-55, Centro Storico
Casa & Bottega
This was our morning hangout when we came back in 2014. Love this place, great for a coffee and pastry and to regroup when you are in the city center.
Next time!!!! We didn't make it, but have heard its delicious pizza! Will just have to come back.
Viale di Trastevere, 53-59, 00153 Roma RM
Beautiful Italian clothing, great price point, a lot of linen and leatther. I scored here, leather jacket, 2 tops, a skirt and leather belt! Located near Campo DiFiori on a very touristy street, but this was a great find!
Via dei Giubbonari, 67, 00186 Roma RM
Walked by this boutique on our first afternoon in Rome and returned a few times to purchase several small pouches for organizing/ traveling. All the products are designed in Italy and then printed and assembled in India. These make great gifts!
Via del Banco di Santo Spirito, 40, 00186 Roma RM
Piazza Farnese Luxury Suites
I ended up really liking this hotel and the location (I wasn't sure at first). It is right off of Campi DiFiore which isn't my favorite Piazza, but ended up finding some really cute spots in this neighborhood. My room number was 102 and had been recently renovated, I would stay in this room again. My parents stayed on the piazza side and it was loud. The staff is super welcoming and helpful. I didn't love the lobby area, but plenty of cute places to hang out close by. Just a tip before checking in ask for your room to not have the cleaning scent sprayed (it is very strong).
Piazza Farnese 101, 00186 Roma, Italia
Notes For Next Time
If staying at Farnese, check out Via del Pellegrino for cute cafés and shops.
Antica Latteria Roma - right next to our hotel, cute little wine bar. It was closed the first few nights we were there and so we didn't discover it until our last night in Rome.
Vicolo del Gallo, 4, 00186 Roma RM
In 2014 we stayed on a quiet street off of Via Del Paca. It was an AIRBNB, I really liked this area and would recommend staying there if you can find a nice place.
EAT & Drink
Located opposite Magazinno 52, great to go here before dinner. It is Natural wine bar and they have good cocktails and good small plates.
Via della Rocca 17, 10123 - Torinno
Best meal I have had in Torrino (so far). More contemporary vibe (menu and interior). It is a small menu, a choice between 2 anitpastas, 2 primi (pasta), 2 secondi (meat & fish), 2 desserts/ cheese. The menu is market based, so always changing. I picked 2 plates and cheese for dessert and it was perfect. Exceptional wine list. It is a tiny restaurant. You will need a reservation.
Via Giolitti, 52/A 10123 - Torinno
Tel. +39 011.4271938
You can see this charming restaurant from our hotel balcony. The street side seating is covered in vines, flowers and beautiful twinkling lights making a very magical ambiabce. We are not the only ones who like this restaurant. Djokovich, Ronaldo Rublev all are big fans, it draws a very stylish crowd. I recommend the shrimp to start and the lobster pasta. The service was fabulous. You will want to make a reservation.
Via della Rocca 41/39 10123 - Torinno
Tel. +39 011 1858 4146
Del Cambio is a beautiful, very historical restaurant established in 1757. It is located in the in a very pretty Piazza Carignano. It's one of the few restaurants in Italy that looks palatial and is in many ways more reminiscent of France than Italy. It is very formal, most men all had jackets, the service is incredible. They have one Michelin star, the room is gorgeous (you must sit in the classic "Risorgimento" room).
Piazza Carignano, 2, 10123 Torino TO
Tel. +39 011 546690
Open at all hours this is one of our neighborhood hangouts. It is located in Piazza Teresa. They have a really charming outside area in the piazza (beware of the pigeons). They serve small sandwiches, pastries and apereitivo with wine which turino is famous for. Our last night we did aperitivos and it was perfect.
Via della Rocca, 19, 10123 Torino TO
Baratti & Milano
Opened in 1875 this chocolate shop and now cafe was a favorite of the Savoys. For us this was a go to lunch stop for a cappucino, orange juice and a small sandwich ( my favorite as the asparagus and egg) and of course a chocolate or two. This was one of our stops on the chocolate tour.
Piazza Castello 29 - Torino
This is a must, so beautiful, fun to get outside the city and we had the whole place to ourselves. It was one of the residences of the Royal House of Savoy. We brought picnic lunches, but there is a cute/ simple cafe in the Palace that has a terrace overlooking the gardens. The audio tour is good, and buy a ticket that allows you into all the exhibits. It is about a 35 minute taxi ride outside of Turino.
Piazza della Repubblica, 4, 10078 Venaria Reale TO
Turin Sweet & Chocolate Tour
Erica booked this through AIRBNB experiences and it was great. Our guide Christina was fun, knowledgable. We stopped at Baratti & Milano.
Opened in 1888, this tiny shop is run by mother and daughter. All hats are made in Italy. Check the hours before going, they close in the middle of the day from 12:30 to 3:30.
Corso Vittorio Emanuele II, 27, 10125 Torino TO
Client: Bosq Aspen Restaurant
Launch Date: December 2022
For this project I worked with my friends + neighbors who own one of my favorite restaurants in Aspen.
We created a custom SquareSpace site that is as beautiful as it is functional. It was important for the site to integrate with their reservation system and be easily editable by their crew.
Check out the new site and if you are in Aspen check out Bosq! They were just nominated for the James Beard Award.
Plage de Gigaro
A smaller, more laid back Pampellon. The Lilly of the Valley beach club and restauratns are located there. Pepe has a more casual Italian menu and Brigatine is also Italian with a more extensive menu and bit more formal. The water is super clear with a sandy bottom. This is one of my favorites.
Plage de Gigaro | Map
The big beach for Saint Tropez.
Epi Beach Pizzarea
Epi Beach Club is super exclusive private club. They have a causal pizzaria that is open to the public and so delicious. There are a few tables there or you can take the pizza down to the beach. The best pizza I have had this trip. The chef is Italian.
Bon Hoi - St Tropez
We had a fancier dinner here, located on an off the beaten bath side street and piazza. I highly recommend the pad thai. You must make a reservation.
Go here for a drink before heading to dinner. The hotel sits above the town so has an amazing view of the old town and the bay of St Tropez.
Cabane Bambou - Pampallone Beach
One of my favorite lunches so far. I had a shrimp and mango salad that I am still thinking of. Super chill vibe.
Client: Hilltop Media Group
Launch Date: April 2022
Hilltop Media Group requires a website presence to showcase their growing publishing company. Currently they have publications in Corpus Christi, Oklahoma City and are looking to expand to additional markets. The website is built in WordPress and is designed to grow as the company grows.
This post has been September 20th, 2023. Additionally I was in Paris middle of June 2023 and has a few recommendations from that trip.
I love Paris. We were lucky with the weather being mild for February. Dining was all outside with heaters everywhere. Here are some of my favorite spots and recommendations. Find the closest boulangerie and wine shop and go every day! When I travel I like to immerse myself in the culture, my favorite spots are generally very French. If you prefer American conveniences to a more authentic experience then my blog is not for you.
Drinks, Dinner & Snacks
Le Progrès Marais - Always the first stop when in Paris for a coup champagne and the best people watch. Sit outside anytime of the year I like coming late afternoon early evening. But stays packed till all hours of the night. Lots of heaters, so you can sit outside year round.
1 Rue de Bretagne, 75003 Paris
Café Charlot - This is my favorite spot at any hour of the day, open from 7:00 am to 2:00pm. Located on happening corner in the Marais the people watching is fabulous. They have delicious food. The tartare saumon/avocat, frites paired with a glass of champagne can't be beat. Try to get a spot outside, they have heaters and blankets in winter.
38 Rue de Bretagne, 75003 Paris, France
Maison Plisson Beaumarchais - Fancy food store
Go here to stock up on food for the week, they have amazing prepared food, meats, produce, yogurts.... The lentil salad with an egg on top is a MUST. They also have a little outdoor kiosk at the Tuileries which is a fun spot to have lunch at.
93 Boulevard Beaumarchais, Paris 3ème
all located in the Marais
I/O Cafe - some of the best coffee in the Marais. Simple, welcoming and minimalistic interior.
16 Rue Dupetit-Thouars, 75003 Paris, France
Yellow Tucan - Right around the corner form Petit Beaumarchais Hotel. A quaint cozy petit spot tucked away on the cutest side street with great coffee. This is my go to and my current favorite coffee shop!
Opens at 9:30, closed on Mondays.
20 rue des Tournelles, Paris 4ème
Boot Café - Weekend Coffee Spot
Picturesque tiny cafe in the heart of Le Marais. I fell in love with this spot back in 2015 and it remains one of my favorites.
Only open weekends, Sat & Sun 10:00 - 5:00.
19 Rue du Pont aux Choux, 75003 Paris, France
Le Used Book Café - Located in Merci Concept Store
I just love everything about this place. Come here everytime I'm in Paris. The coffee shop is located in the front of store and is lined with floor to ceiling old books. Be sure to walk around the shop, I always find some goodies. This trip I purchased a beret! Also check out The Ciné Café which serves great salads and casual lunch fare. Its located to the left of the store entrance.
111 Bd Beaumarchais, 75003 Paris, France
Merci - I just love everything about this place. Come here everytime I'm in Paris. It's in the Trendy Marais neighborhood too. Have a coffee & cake, & people watch. Inside is a fashion shop & homewares shop all under the one roof! Pretty cool!
Ob-La-Di - AS OF JUNE 2023, THEY HAVE CLOSED
Our go to coffee shop this trip. Every cup of coffee is delicious, the whole atmosphere is really cozy and welcoming.
Opens at 9:00 on weekdays and 10:00 on weekends.
54 rue Saintonge, 75 003 Paris
Petit Beaumarchais Hotel - September 2023 was my third stay here!
It is one of the most charming well priced hotels I have ever stayed in. Fabulous location in the Marais, right off Place de la Republique. The Bastile Metro is right there, super easy to jump on a Velib and go straight down to the Seine all on a bike path and just steps away from the heart of the Marais!
This boutique hotel is unique, charming, comfortable and welcoming.
Every room is different, I stayed in a single room on the top floor with a bathtub in the dormer window that had views of the Eiffel Tower (Room 604).
The hotel has a floatatorium (check out the photos for what this is). With your stay you get a complimentary hour. I scheduled a massage for after my float and the best massage I have ever had. The hotel has a partnership with Institut Calma Paris, which I want to check out on my next stay in Paris.
AIRBNB - charming & cozy apartment
One of the cutest AIRBNBs. Located in the heart of the Marais, we really felt like we lived in Paris when staying here. Our first night we built a fire and enjoyed a bottle of champagne, total perfection. The wife is an artist and husband is a musician. Her art decorates the apartment, I bought a few prints to bring home. They have 3 kids, so this is a fabulous place to stay with a family.
Worth Going/ Doing
Velib - I was a bit tentative about biking, but Paris has removed 1 lane from their roads and made it soley dedicated to bikers. The velib bikes are so easy to rent, its 5 euro for 24 hours. We road down to the Seine, past thriough the Louve and across the Seine to Notre Dame and then across
Jardin Des Jardin Des Tuileries - If staying in the Marais its a very easy (straight shot) bike ride (Velib) from Place de la Republique. Maison Plisson has a little outdoor café in the park. Great spot to grab lunch and have a picnic.
Les Bains du Marais - Hammam
For those who don't know what a hammam is, its basically a big steam room. They also have a sauna and some rooms to relax in. The waxing is a traditional Middle Eastern wax, made in the spa, its 100% natural and chemical-free. I highly reccomend. They have a restaurant which looked great, but will have to save that for the next trip.
14 Rue Saint-Fiacre, 75002 Paris, France
01 48 87 20 20
It was so quiet, we had the entire park to ourselves. We wandered around, didn't go up to the top, but would have been the day to, as there were no lines. We took few circles around the carosoel that overlooks the Seine and the Eiffel Tower and wandered down to the Seine to get another look.
When in Paris I always make time for a visit to the Musée Picasso. The museum is the perfect size, its not too daunting. This trip the show was a combo with Rodin. And after go right around the corner for a crepe at Breizh Café.
5 Rue de Thorigny, 75003 Paris, France
Transportation To/ From Airport
Metro/Train - Traffic is so bad in Paris these days that you need to plan 2 + hours to get to the airport by car. From Le Petite Beau Marchais it takes 1 hour and 5 minutes and costs 11 euros. This is the route from the hotel to the airport.
- Take Bastille Metro to Gare Nord Stop (about 5 stops)
- Follow signs to Charles de Gaul - It is B Nord (purple signs), this is a really big metro stop so pay close attention to signs.
- When you get to B Nord there are different trains on the line, so don’t just get on the first train. Make sure you get on the one going to Charles de Gaul. It is a nice looking train
- Depending on which terminal you are going to you to its the last 2 stops
- You will take a little tram to the terminal once you get off metro
Welcome Pickups - If you want to do a car service I highly recommend them. You book this in advance and the driver will be waiting for you with a sign when you get out of customs. This is a really nice option for when you arrive as you are very tiered and then don't have to think about everything. For leaving I would take the metro, otherwise you have to leave so early to take in account traffic.
Client: Caribou Club Management
Launch Date: November 2017
Details: WordPress Site
Classy, elegant and sophisticated was the goal for this redesign. Caribou required a site that could be used as a tool for both in club events and for their catering program.
Client: Berko Photo
Launch Date: November 2021
Platform: WordPress + WooCommerce
The BERKO Photo website has entered the 21st century. The static html site (circa 2010) has been transformed into a sleek WordPress site. Ferenc Berko was a pioneer of modernist phototgraphy. The site features a customized wishlist that allows the customer to communicate with the gallery before purchasing.
Client: Bernardo 1946
Launch Date: January 2022
I implemented a completly refreshed design, that reflects the luxury and style that has defined the brand for 75 years. The goal was to give them a site that truely works for them. It is one of the most customized SHopify sites I have done yet I made sure it is flexible and easy for the client to updated with their amazing new products.
All shoes are handcrafted in Brazil at family-run factories, whose artisianal tradition and skills have been passed doen through generations. If your looking for some new shoes, check out the site!
Its Friday morning February 4th and I am in the Munich airport en route to Gassin (via Nice). 3 days ago this was adventure was not even a thought in my mind. I have break before my next project and so naturally I decided to jaunt to France. It helps that one of my dearest friends is living in Gassin (15 minutes from Saint Tropez) for the year.
This is a petit glimpse of some adventures we had and suggestions of where to stay, dine, shop, sip rosé, people watch and of course where to find the best coffee and croissants.
Check out my post from July 2021 with a lot of additional favorite spots.
Saint Paul De Vence
I just love this medieval village, nestled in the mountains above the Mediterranean. I flew into Nice, Kate came and scooped me up, we headed to Saint Paul de Vence (about an hour from Nice) for lunch and a little exploring. The windy stone streets are full of art galleries and a large boules court is in the village center. When we came back in February 2020 we spent 2 nights in the cutest AIRBNB here. Saint Paul de Vence is home to La Colombe d'Or, also a fabulous place to stay or dine. Be sure to check out the history of the Colombe d'Or. It was a convening place for artists during and after WW11. A number of the artists couldn't pay for their stay so they left paintings and that is why they have the most incredible art collection. There is a wall that surrounds the village, you can walk all around the top of it.
Le Tilleul - Great lunch & Dinner spot
I have had both lunch and dinner here. It was warm enought to sit outside on the terrace. The food is fabulous and it has a great atmosphere.
Place du Tilleul, 06570 St-Paul-de-Vence France
The beaches of Saint Tropez are a bit more deserted at this time of the year, but no less breathtaking. There are only a few beach spots open at this time of the year, which means that the ones open are happening, especially on a gorgeous Sunday afternoon.
Le Migon - Plage de Pampelonne
This rustic beach restaurant instantly became one of my favorite spots at Pampelonne. Its located right on the beach and has a very simple ambiance, its not flashy like a lot of the other beach restaurants. We were adventurous and tried the sea urchin. Tasted like it had been pulled from the sea that morning, definitely required some rosé to wash it down. Make a reservation.
1550 Bonne Terrasse Quartier Bonne Terrasse Golfe de Saint-Tropez, 83350 Ramatuelle, France
The Saturday market in Saint Tropez is the biggest. The market moved back to the quainter location in Le Place de Lice. The previous summer it was in the parking lot at the marina because of construction. Each village in the area has a smaller market throughout the week which are also lots of fun.
La Tarte Tropezienne - Place des Lices
I usually make at least one stop a day at one of the many Tarte Tropezinnes throughout the south. This one has a great spot to sit outside and enjoy the people watching.
Places des lices83990 Saint-Tropez
Brocantes - French Flea Market
Visiting the local Brocantes (a French word for flea market) is always a highlight of my trip. It is a lively encounter with everyday French culture, sometimes including a band and always a food/ beverage truck. I always pick up a few unique finds. Our go to markets is the Cogolin.
Kate and Matt are renting for most charming home right below the village of Gassin. The house overlooks all the Minuty vines. Obviously this was a dream for me, we took daily strolls though the vines.