Monthly Archives: June 2013

Malibu and Santa Barbara

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Hi guys, hope you have been enjoying my recent posts on my trip to California. I am currently sitting here reminiscing that this time last week I was spending my last day in LA sitting by the sea in Malibu before heading out on the first leg of my road trip to San Francisco. The road trip began as we traveled for two hours up the coast from Malibu on Highway 1 to Santa Barbara. The scenery was amazing and I absolutely loved driving on the coast, it was a spectacular drive and so unusual to glance to your left and see the Pacific Ocean.

Malibu is my other favourite place to be in LA you can read about the other happy place here, this is because my zen place is always to be by the coast and  listen to the waves. In Malibu you can watch the surfers and paddle boarders which I find fascinating. I have decided I am going to try to master paddle boarding this winter in Dubai. If you saw my first attempt at paddle boarding I think you would be very skeptical about my attempts to conquer this activity but, I will keep you updated on that situation later.If I ever I wasn’t going to live in Dubai you would find me up in the Malibu hills over looking the ocean (yes, this is my dream).

If you’re in Malibu I would highly recommend going to Gladstones for lunch or dinner. The location is fantastic right next to the Ocean where Sunset meets the PCH. Sitting above a very un-populated beach; either come and sunbathe prior or after your lunch. I would suggest after, so you can eat as much as possible and then fall in to a food-coma lying on the gorgeous California beach. While I was at Gladstones I indulged in the shrimp taco’s which were delicious and somehow had a taste that lingered on your tongue for hours and even made me crave more days later. I also recommend the cobb salad which to me is quite an American salad as I don’t find it on menu’s elsewhere, do you? The cobb salad was given its own Gladstones twist which makes it less heavy and a light summer salad, how LA! I could go on and on about Gladstones but, I think you have to go and try it for yourselves.

After our lunch there was no chance to sunbathe as we had to jump in the car and head to Santa Barbara, As I have already said and will tell you lots of times how great the scenery is. Once we reached Santa Barbara we took a walk along the beach and you can see the pictures here. This is one of my favourite things to do when I am in Dubai but the great thing on the West Coast is that the beaches go for miles. so you can walk your heart out.

Santa Barbara is a quaint Oceanside town with a laid back atmosphere where life is happening but, at a slower place than elsewhere. So, come up-to Santa Barbara kick back, enjoy the scenery and indulge in good food and super friendly people. When your bored of the beach and harbour head to the town and walk in and out of the little shops and boutiques.

While I was in Santa Barbara I stayed at a beautiful hotel called Oceana Santa Barbara. Located on Cabrillo Boulevard; its the perfect location for the beach and harbour area but also only a short walk to the town centre. The hotel was re-designed in 2008 but what I loved about the design was the mix of the Mexican/Spanish influence and the colonial look. Gorgeous seating areas are located sporadically throughout the property under palm tree’s and blue skies what more could you ask for? Beach cruisers are complimentary for two hours and I wish I would have had time to indulge in an exploratory bike ride at a slower pace than city biking in Amsterdam.

Once again I have another food recommendation for you; Toma. An absolutely wonderful restaurant where most ingredients are sourced locally. Speaking of locally sourced products if you’re looking to try some good California wine there is plenty to try here at Toma. As for the menu, there are traditional Italian dishes on the menu but, each has their own individual twist. Toma has recently re-opened 8 weeks ago and outside the restaurant the decoration is beautiful whilst the interior is inviting and cozy. The staff is very friendly, we didn’t have a reservation and yet they couldn’t do enough to accommodate us furthermore, they are so knowledgable of their food as well as the local area that eating at Toma is a real dining experience. Head here for dinner and I assure you won’t be disappointed.

All I can say as I type this post from London is, I wish I was back on the West Coast exploring Malibu and Santa Barbara all over again. For the foodies who read the posts this is really the place to go if you’re looking to indulge in some extraordinary dining experiences. As soon as I can be back I will be.

I wore: Pants: Zara, Top: HM Nederland, Scarf: Mille Rostock

Do you have other great restaurants to recommend in this area? If so write them in the comment box.

So Santa Barbara and Malibu are definitely ‘Sojustnice’

Ciao for now xx

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Habibi West Coast

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Hey Guys and Gals, these photos were taken on the gorgeous beach in Santa Barbara during my road trip from Los Angeles on California Highway 1. Of course, when your road tripping you want to be in something that you can just hop out onto beach stops in, especially when your driving! Here was my outfit for the first day on the road, I love this t-shirt and I have been waiting to share this t-shirt on a style post for a while. I am sure you have all seen the “Homies, South Central” t-shirts, well now you can see the Dubai version including camels and the Burj Khalifa …… “Habibi Dubai” Head to S*uce to buy yours and choose from 3 different colours.

T-shirt: S*uce Dubai, Shorts: Zara, Sandals: Istanbul Bazaar, Turkey, Cap: Personalised in Santa Monica LA,

Phone Case: Cliche at De Bijenkorf, Amsterdam

Hope you like the outfit!

Ciao for now xx

Architectural Inspiration

DSC_0290DSC_0287DSC_0304DSC_0303I love Architecture it can keep me entertained for hours, its one of the reasons I love to live in Amsterdam and Dubai because there are great buildings everywhere. In Venice there are so many different types of houses. This is a quick post of some of the houses that caught my eye. I love the ones that line the beach and always imagine I could live in one of those. In fact, I always say if I win the lottery I would buy a place there (fingers crossed).

As for the last two houses they are from the canal area and I also wanted to show you that it’s not just the Beach front where there is so much diversity but all around Venice of course, arguably this kind of architectural diversity is all over LA but sadly some properties are not so easy to photography especially those in the Hills.

Which house would you like to live in?

Ciao for now xx

Travel Thursday #6 Venice and Santa Monica

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Hey all, well this is the first post of quite a few from my recent trip to the West Coast of America. If you follow me on twiiter or instagram then you would know I did a road trip from Los Angeles to San Francisco. Well, I didn’t make it to San Francisco as I ran out of time so I will be back soon and starting from north to south next time.

Here is a post on one of my favourite areas of Los Angeles; Venice and Santa Monica. What I love about Venice is the scenery and the people watching. I can spend hours sitting on the Venice boardwalk just watching people and being a little nosy and listening in on people’s conversations. When I go to Venice I love to go to Danny’s Deli as they have the best French Toast….. just so you get the picture, imagine sitting in the sun watching skate boarders go by and surfers coming back from their morning surf and then digging into french toast tossed with fresh fruit …. yes this is the best way to spend a morning!

Following filling your tummy walk along the Board Walk and head onto the beach to do some more people watching. All along the boardwalk there are street performers and plenty of kitch shops to keep you enterained. My favourite thing though about being in Venice is to look at all the houses on the beach front and then walk up South Venice Boulevard and head towards the Venice Canals. In my opinion this is the most architecturally stylish area in Los Angeles, the houses are all so different and it is quiet which makes it the most relaxing place to walk around. If you guys love Californication as much as I do you’ll know Hank and Becca often take walks around the canals …. I guess also because they sometimes need time out from their slightly crazy lives.

After my morning stroll it was time to head to Santa Monica, and I went via Shutters on the beach ….. this is one of the most elegant hotels that has an old colonial feel to it. I like to spend my meal times in hotel lounges and the best thing about this one is that you can sit on the terrace delve into a delicious burger with a cocktail and an uniterrupted view of Santa Monica pier. After lunch, walk up and down the pier and take in the atmosphere and if you have time chill out on a bench and sit and listen to the sea. I don’t know if you guys have a happy place but mine is listening to the rythm of the waves and I also love the salty smell of the sea so for me I could spend a couple of hours doing nothing here.

From the pier you can head onto 3rd Street Promenade which is a mini shopping heaven. Head to Bloomigdales and Barney’s of New York in the mini mall area and then head to Kitson for cute gift ideas and gorgeous t-shirts. Recently I have been going crazy for t-shirts because they are so simple and paired with my skinny jeans they just make the perfect outfit.

After this, cross the road  walk down 3rd street and wonder in and out of stores and try if you can to keep your credit card in your wallet. After you’ve done enough shopping on 3rd, then head to my shopping must-stop; Fred Segal. This must be one of the best concept stores I have ever been too. Whenever, I am in LA I make a bee-line for this store and usually spend at least an hour in the fitting rooms because they are so many amazing brands, IRO, Isabel Marant, Helmut Lang and JET to name a few. This time I picked up some t-shirts and a great pair of limited design Nike’s …. I  m sure you’ll see them on the blog soon.

Aside from these essentials I recommend just walking and cruising in your car around both Venice and Santa Monica. There are so many places to see and the street art in Venice is inspiring and for the European eye it has a retro feel that makes it feel so different. Next time I promise to bring you a whole new set of photos to show you just how diverse the area is. One thing is for sure though I won’t miss my french toast 😉

Have you been to Venice or Santa Monica or do you live there? Send me and other readers your tips and tricks in the comments box.

T-shirt by  Sandro, Hat: Venice Boardwalk

Ciao for now xx

Big City

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Hey guys, well here I am back from California now and I have some jet lag (Surprise) so I thought I would show you another look from my recent stop over in London. I was heading out for a catch up dinner with friends and loved this easy going outfit so thought I must share.

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Before I headed for dinner, I did some quick pics so I could share my London outfit for you. I am so in love with this t-shirt/dress. I actually bought it in a size M and considering I usually wear a XS you can understand just how oversized I wanted this to fit! As for the necklace it has received lots of compliments and I hope you like it too!

When I am in London or Amsterdam I always have to pack lots for my days out including an umbrella, jacket, notebook, my camera and make up essentials so this denim bag is perfect. It fits everything in, goes well with most outfits and is light too.

T-shirt/dress: 3.1 Phillip Lim, Skirt: HMnederland, Necklace: Topshop, Earrings: Tiffany & Co, Shoes: Dune, Bag: Marc By Marc Jacobs

Do you like a big bag? What’s your favourite as I am looking for a new one.

Ciao for now xx

Roadtrippin

I am sorry it’s been a bit quiet here on the blog but I m currently road tripping on highway 1 in California. Having spent the last few days in Los Angeles we are now going up to San Francisco stopping off on the way and let me tell you the scenery is stunning. So today we leave Santa Barbara and I promise that I ll drop some blog posts ASAP.

Ciao for now xx

P.s follow me on Instagram and twitter to keep up with the travels!

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London Look

DSC_0116I was here in London for a few days to catch up with some friends and family. Although I am half English I don’t get to come back very often. I love to be in London for architecture and vibe of the city and I have tried to capture both of these in the photos. As you guys are viewing this post I am on a long haul flight to Los Angeles. I wish LA was my home and I try to go as often as possible since it is my zen place (I’ll tell you all about that ASAP). Can’t wait to share my trip with you guys and in the mean time enjoy these photos.

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DSC_011811DSC_012411I am loving this new shirt I picked up on a shopping spree in Amsterdam recently. I love its loose fit and how it just drapes off the shoulders. The weather in London over the last few days was a little here and there so it was difficult to know what to wear. So, I teamed the shirt with my favourite Zara shorts and sadly had to wear tights because it wasn’t quite warm enough for bare legs. The necklace was a gift from my friend Karime for my birthday and I know your going to be seeing lots more of it on the blog.

Shirt: Maje, Necklace: Second Female, Shorts: Zara, Belt: Maje, Tights, Wolford, Boots, Dune, Bracelet, By Sophie and Tiffany & Co, Watch: American Eagle Outfitters

What do you love about London?

Ciao for Now xx