Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Shopping is a feeling!

Throughout the last couple of weeks I've received verbal comments about how people love my blog, but some of them tell me that they only wished that they could shop like me.  I believe I need to restate my mission here which is in itself,   "The information source behind great shopping and lifestyles." 

A happy candy shopper at Dylan's Candy Store!
It is intended to inspire, to recommend, to rethink your shopping experiences.  I have a great friend, she's quite wealthy, well she's absolutely minted, but she is the most down to earth woman I've ever met.   She's got great taste and lives in a beautiful home.  However, she's been minted for quite a while, knows the value of money and would rather be charitable than shop at luxury rack prices.  Okay, she splurges from time to time, but she attests to the fact that most of the time she spends in luxury stores is just scouting out styles and home goods that she likes.  She then sport shops at tjmaxx or other liquidators and knows exactly what she's looking for when she's there.  I do a lot of the same.  However, I probably spend more time shopping than her anyways as she is very involved in her charitable works.  At any rate, the point here is, this blog is not only about high end shopping. It's intention is to inspire, to inspire those who aspire, to cause invention, to urge people to create, to be creative, and most of all be passionate about whatever it is they love to do. 

Happy Participants at a Re-Gifting Bingo Party!
Clearly shopping is a feeling on every level and it should be!



Tuesday, July 27, 2010

What did The Movie "Inception" mean to you?


This past weekend it was cold and rainy in Prague, we ventured out of the house later in the afternoon to the cinema to see Inception starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Ellen Page. We were both clueless as to what the film was about, but we had heard good things, confusing things, and bad things. Well that makes something interesting enough for us to check it out. I found the film to be a true thriller. James Bond meets The Matrix meets Flatliners. Great Flick, go see it.

Having a degree in Philosophy, it doesn't take much for my mind to get going. During the film I couldn't help but think of how designers get their first inception of thought for a new line. Later it became crystal clear, they get their information from the palette around them, the people, the places, the things, the colors. True designers are inspired on a daily basis by what's' literally happening around them. They transform that inception idea over time into something brilliant, even genius.
All that said, it is without a doubt that as a child I was inspired by the film True Stories by Talking Heads. It's the story of a small town called Virgil, Texas. The town is about to throw it's "Celebration of Specialness," and the whole town is gearing up for it. Meanwhile, David Byrne of talking heads is basically walking through the film making ironic commentary. In every scene, a portrayal of life in what is boring suburban Texas becomes a view into the future of society. The film is atleast 25 years ahead of its time. It truly opened my eyes to a life that I didn't want to be caught dead living and later would end up defining societal and technological developments that happened maybe 10 or 15 years ago. Since viewing the film for the first time I have had the inception of idea that anything is possible. Where that leads is the unknown, but I passionately walk the path to get there.

Don't miss the film clip below. I think Kay Culver say's it best, "Shopping, is a feeling."

Is your dog going to Brown or Dartmouth?







Available at www.petflys.com

If you're like me or even remotely like me about your dog then of course you want him or her pampered like someone who ends up at Brown or Dartmouth and since those aren't ever going to become realities for your pooch, then you've got expendable cash that doesn't have to be thrown into the University bin.  We treat our dog like our child. Some may find that strange, but he's the closest thing we have ever had to a child and we spoil him rotten.  However, when it comes to choosing a dog carrier for transatlantic flights it becomes almost difficult to spoil, be unique, and meet the requirements of the FAA or IATA!

Louis, our 18 month old Prague Ratter has been all over the world, dresses well, and has a demeanor like that of a stable and aristocratic Prince.
Louis. Collar by Coach,
Sweater by Juicy Couture,
Bag by Gucci.

Sometimes I think we should have even named him Prince or some god foresaken name like Paris Hilton would have dished him out like, "Prince Baby Louis Alexander Pumpkin Shizzle."  This year, after a flight to Paris, we noticed that the airlines were starting to crack down on requirements for carrying your pet on with you.  They are actually making you keep the dog in the bag the whole time you fly.  Well okay, recently I've tried to, as much as I can become part of the "If you can't beat them, join them" crew and therefore, I decided I would set out on a shopping journey for a pet carrier that was airline approved, stylish for the one carrying, yet at the same time comfortable for Louis!  I've shopped at dog boutiques in Paris, New York, Houston, London, Brussels, Bratislava, Prague, Madrid, Barcelona, Rome, and Dubai and although all of these stores are great and carry a wide variety of items, a carrier is something special that can't be chosen from say  5 styles in a shop.  The internet comes in big time here and not only for variety, but also so you don't have to carry the thing around with you after you've made you're purchase.

Louis with shopintheknow author Jason Cahill
Searching high and low on the internet I came up with precious few options even still.  I'm not against the Louis Vuitton sac chien 40 or 50, or the traditional Gucci hard case carrier...but sometimes you just want to be different. We have the Gucci Basket Bag as I like to call it pictured on the left and available at www.gucci.com or in their stores if called in advance. It has many great features like the double zip front with leather tie down and brass button, the padded flooring for the dogs comfort, and an elegantly short Gucci signature webbing leash attached inside that keeps Louis restrained yet comfortable.  Its great on a day out in the city and can double as a shopping carrier even if L's in the bag.  However, the airlines are now tooting their horns about hard case only and so this bag doesn't cut it anymore for travel.  So, after shopping online for days we purchased the Sailor Bleu hard case bag as seen in above left corner available online at www.petflys.com  Petflys offers great service and they shipped from California to Prague, NO PROBLEM.  I give Tammy props at Petflys for her amazing customer service and also to Jamie who is keen on making sure all customer's and their dogs are happy.  We love our new dog carrier and so does Louis.

After countless hours of research I've made some recommendations below.  Some are traditional and oddly enough I only recommend anything from petflys or these these picks below:

Goochie Poochie Pet Bag
Available at www.yourdogsuppliesstore.com




Christian Audigier Safari Dog Carrier
Available at www.yourdogsuppliesstore.com

Louis Vuitton Sac du Chien
available at Louis Vuitton
Gucci Flight bag available at
Gucci
Not Airline Approved Sketch Bag by Louis Dog
available at Modern Tails





























Sunday, July 25, 2010

It's a Mewelry Box!


Cufflinks and handkerchiefs are an essential part of every man's wardrobe.  Don't be fooled guys, people do notice.  People notice a smart dressed man and are more likely to employ them, just like they are more likely to employ someone who keeps themselves in good physical condition.  These attributes shown on your outside are ever present reminders to the outside world of how you choose to live.  They define you and give people insight to your character such as whether you are lazy, motivated, intelligent, funny, sad, pathetic, clean, dirty, smelly, etc.  You get the point.  If you aren't dressing to impress than just give up.  Look your best at all times and for every event or point in the day.  For most men, that means at least 60-70 hours a week in the office, working for the man and trying to find ways to enjoy it.  How does one look office appropriate?  Well for me and those I roll with we wear suits, pointed collar french-cuff shirts, cuff links, and beautiful ties and we carry handkerchiefs.  Yes, handkerchiefs.  Even in the best of a Modern Grade A Office Building I sweat...and therefore I have said handkerchief to dab off wet facial areas.  This is definitely great in meetings in which you don't want to look like a total tool having beads of sweat dripping off of you because of the artificial air environment you are sitting in!  Don't pull out a tissue or use the luncheon napkin, come prepared, or don't show up, and if you do, excuse yourself and have a brief moment in the bathroom for a sweat fix up in the sink!

Of course I have my favorite brands of cufflinks and of handkerchiefs.  However, I also buy both in vintage as well.  Handkerchiefs and cufflinks make great gifts for men!  Depending on where one purchases them they come in swanky boxes with fine ribbon all the way to those plastic shrink wrapped finds, that can also be boxed in maybe say...a vintage jewelry box or something like that.  A "Mewlery Box" is a must have!  This author defines the "Mewlery Box" as a place where a man keeps his personal belongings such as cufflinks, handkerchiefs, watches, matchbooks, pocket knife, and anything personal.  It's the quintessential, "KEEP OUT," spot in the home.  That means everyone except the owner.

Below, some recommended cufflink and handkerchief brands and their "links":



Thomas Pink
Thomas Pink of Jermyn Street, London has been in the men's clothier business since 1984 and used the name of an 18th Century London tailor by the same name.  Offering a wide selection of superior quality shirts, cufflinks, accessories, and there's even a whole line of women's wear too!





Paul Smith
There's not much else to say, the name says it all!  Paul Smith offers one of the best ranges of suits, shirts, cufflinks, accessories, and other lifestyle items including housewares and books!

Follow Paul's blog at:  Paul Smith's Blog










Brooks Brothers
Why mess with tradition?  They make great shirts, specifically the non-iron line seen in picture at left.  Brooks Brothers is CLASSIC, made easy!













Great prices, good design, and an outstanding collection of cufflinks, handkerchiefs, and other accessories for the modern man.



Thursday, July 22, 2010

There not just TOYS, they ARE CZECH Toys!

Wooden Czech Toy c.1930
This guide is meant to be about shopping and that's....all kinds of shopping.  I don't have any particular focus when I'm shopping, I am just merely moving through spaces that sell goods and if the products have something interesting about them or they evoke a feeling from me, I'm buying.  There are no boundaries here @shopintheknow


Hence, an entry about toys, specifically Czech Toys.  I'm not a woman, nor a heterosexual man, nor a cross dresser, and therefore...I probably shouldn't buy women's jewelry, but I do.  I'm not a child, We don't have any children of our own so I probably shouldn't be buying toys either, yet I am still attracted to toys when I'm shopping and I tend to buy a significant amount of toys or child related items throughout the year.  I buy them because I think they are cool or because I think I could see a nephew or niece playing with the item or wearing a piece of children's apparel which is also very difficult to walk by and not at least have a look to see what's going on in children's fashion these days.
 Igráček, a communist era knock-off of the well-known German Playmobil brand. 

All that said, I find Czech Toys a completely interesting group of toys.  Some are mechanically amazing and others are just downright cool.  Prague is a great place to search for Czech Toys and the best ones are available in Antique Toy Stores or for seriously edited and "Damn That's Cool" vintage and antique toys check out the Artel Design Shop located at Celetna 29 in Prague's Old Town district.  The owner, Karen Feldman, has been my mentor in understanding the beauty and design that went into so many of these toys.  The Artel Design Store is a museum for the most quintessential toys to be found on the streets of Prague and the staff is more than likely able to provide you with a verbal history tour of the toy!  They carry vintage and renewed toys as well as Karen Feldman designed glass that is the most exquisite crystal in the Czech Republic for table top and design.
Wooden Czech Toy c.1925







Wednesday, July 21, 2010

DEEP IN THE HEART OF TEXAS!

Texas gets a bad rap a lot of the times, but I think people are missing out BIG time if they discount the State as a whole for it's minor misgivings.  There is so much to write about shopping in Texas that this is just the beginning of what is to be I'm sure a serious amount of content on the subject.

Texans are known for their eccentricities and in the past and now one can still find legitimate business men and women in cowboy gear and they are actually pretty cool people.  However, there's more to Texas than just cowboys and rodeos.  There is a vast variety of shopping to be had on every level and sometimes in the most obscure places.

Take for instance Fredericksburg, Texas.  It's a town just like most in the United States with a very small population of just 11,098 and was founded by Baron Otfried Han Freiherr von Meusebach in the 1840's as a German immigrant town.  Well, almost 200 years later, the town still survives and has become a destination point for shoppers in the know.  @shopintheknow hasn't been to Fredericksburg in many years. However, it still holds a special place in his heart having spent many a hot Texas afternoon shopping along main street in one of the most bizarrely placed selection of chic and elegant boutiques, mostly privately owned.  People from all over the Hill Country and the surrounding areas such as Houston and San Antonio flocked to the town for more interesting items then they can find in their cosmopolitan cities.

If you are in or are going to Texas anytime soon, you should most definitely make a trip to Fredericksburg.  You will have a beautiful drive through wide open spaces and lavender and bluebell fields and when you arrived you will feel that Martians have invaded and taken over this German Town!  There's even a German Beer Garden and most locals speak German too! Strange.

So my TOP PICKS for Fredericksburg, Texas are:



RedinFred, at 307 East Main Street, in their own words..."modern lines . vintage finds . gifts to make your head spin!" And boy do they mean it.  The store is well layed out and visually merchandised to a T, like most shops on the main drag.














They focus on home decor, gift items, and just really well thought out product!  Don't miss them when shopping on Main Street.You'll be happy you went in and the building is a renovated car showroom.

Throw Pillows from RedinFred











dogologie at 148-B West Main offers trendy and hip, as well as elegant dog collars and leads, play gear, apparel, treats, bedding, wellness, travel, bowls, mats, books, breeds, and earth friendly products. dogologie is one of the best dog stores I've been to many around the world.  At dogologie the staff is friendly and well educated on the product.  




(Louis as a puppy to the left.)
dogologie is also online here.  Next time you are in the need for dog clothes make this your second stop after www.ralphlauren.com 



Root at 306 East Main Street
The shop stocks brands you would only expect to find in cosmopolitan cities. They maintain a good variety of fashion apparel, home decor items, novelty, and giftware.

In addition to the product they carry, they also merchandise well and must have a buyer that is 100% focused on selecting the best products for their discerning clients.

But seriously, don't just take these three picks as the number one stores you'll find in Fredericksburg.  There are a plethora of them and mostly along the famed Main Street.

@shopintheknow

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

CARTIER AT PRAGUE CASTLE










CARTIER AT PRAGUE CASTLE
July 9th to October 17th
The Prague Castle Riding School


Without a doubt I can say that the Cartier at Prague Castle exhibit is by far the best exhibit I've ever attended thus far in my now 7 years of living in this great City.  I don't know if you can attribute it only to the objects on display, but the exhibit must also be noted for its excellence in curation.  I went to Cartier at  Prague Castle for many reasons like finding out more about what the brand's values were built on in the early years? How did the brand position itself so clearly with the right market?  Another question I asked myself, do they do more than just panthers and tank watches? 


 I must start off with entry into The Prague Castle Riding School where the exhibit is being held.  It was brilliantly reconstructed and renovated to meet not only modern standards, but also to meet the aesthetic of its original architectural glory.  Some basic facts:  Admission is 375 Czech Crowns, roughly 15 Euro, and tickets can be purchased at ticketpro outlets around the city or at the door.  However, entry times are scheduled so you have to buy your tickets at a 15 minute interval, which is quite handy in preventing long lines.  We visited around High Noon and their were maybe 50 or 60 people meandering through the exhibit, a small number for a large room allowing you to view the collection with pleasure.  Black Lacquered based glass vitrine's house the collection but only in small numbers and in sets that make sense in relation to design, mechanics, style, etcetera.  Very well done Eva Eisler, curator of the exhibition and Rony Piesl, the exhibition designer.

     We opted for the audio tour which I always tend to do; you just get more out of the experience of visiting a museum or exhibition this way. It keeps you focused.  It was not before the end of the first vitrine row that I began to take notes on this amazing collection.  I was so fascinated by almost every piece that I saw I became very selective and was also entranced by the conception of thought that made the piece of jewelry or handbag in front of me not just a functional object, but a work of pure genius.

     So, the answer to all of my questions above is:  Cartier has good product. They take pride in what they do.  Their clients respect them for that and are ready to pay for the precious stones in addition to the craftsmanship that goes into each piece.

@shopintheknow's edited favorites of the Cartier at Prague Castle Collection are the following:








CARTIER DOLPHIN BANGLE
Cartier Paris, special order, 1969
Engraved gold, 1,028 brilliant cut
diamonds weighing 33.73 carats in total, 
two pear-shaped emeralds (eyes)

This is a truly serious piece of jewelry and it's a bangle!
Love Bangles!





CARTIER SNAKE NECKLACE
Cartier Paris, special order, 1968 for Maria Felix
2,473 brilliant and baguette-cut diamonds
weighing 178.21 carats in total, two pear-shaped emeralds as eyes, green red, and black enamel

María Félix had damn good taste. Visit the exhibition to learn more about her eccentric Cartier habits.







CARTIER HANDBAG
Cartier Paris, 1935
White gold, yellow gold, tortoiseshell(bar), canvas
27 x 19cm

Well, just because its about the most elegant handbag I've ever seen.


Monday, July 19, 2010

I'm a flea market junkie!

A couple of weeks ago now, Joanna Hutchins, a dear friend of mine and the co-author of the widely read www.accidentalepicurean.com , visited Prague with a friend of hers.  I hadn't seen Joanna in probably at least 12 years or so, can't actually remember where it was that we saw each other last either, but it was like reconnecting with a sibling.  Apparently we were both on the same shopping page as well.  Through the week while I worked these girls tour it up in the stores, many of which I was recommending while texting them along their way!  Gretchen, Joanna's accompanying friend, asked if I knew of any good places to buy "old" things?  Both being long term expats in South East Asia, the girls sometimes long for anything "old," as most of these said classified items in Asia are considered pure rubbish and have literally already hit the bin and been removed off continent to some ocean landfill or something.
 I don't go to Kolbenova Flea Market that much anymore, maybe once a year or so.  It still remains the best flea market in Prague, but when your boyfriend proclaims to you that he hates vintage clocks and asks, "Why do we have 20 of them?" You are then forced into the reality that the flea market, although a fascinating world of vintage yesteryear is also a dangerous place to become a self declared junk buyer!  Junk is good though. It can spice up your home in an instant and allows you to be creative.  If you visit Prague its a must, but be prepared for a VERY LARGE Car Boot Sale!




Bleší trh
(Flea Market)

Kolbenova, Praha 9
Open: Sat 07:00 - 14:00 


Source:  www.prague.tv

How to get there.
Turn right out of the Kolbenova metro station (line B), down the street of the same name, and cross to the other side. The market's in the old ČKD Trakce yard. There's a small gate and hut at the entrance; it costs 10 CZK to get in.




(Above Right Middle)  Photo of Jason Cahill, author of @shopintheknow, with antlers purchased at Kolbenova Flea Market. 


(Below, Antlers from Kolbenova Flea Markeat use in Guest Room wall composition)







Sunday, July 18, 2010

David Lynch and Dior

I always find fashion incredibly amazing.  In high end fashion houses it's as if they don't even have advertising budgets to adhere to.  Designers simply decide who they want to collaborate with, how they see the vision, and how they wish their customers to feel in what they design.

People like Bernard Arnault stay out of the way of these designers as they are his bread and butter and without his genius idea of spicing up most of his LVMH brands with hot designers such as Marc Jacobs for Louis Vuitton, John Galliano for Dior,  and What young designer hasn't made a score for Givenchy these days?  Yes, these are genius business ideas of Bernard Arnault , but its the designers that make his brands the most famous and sought after items on the streets.  Hence the reason behind this blog.  Designers these days are working on almost unlimited budgets to create a "feeling" for what their lines represent, whether this is done by an amazing film as the one shown below called Lady Blue Shanghai directed for Dior by none other than David Lynch and starring the brilliant Marion Cotillard.  This film in itself creates a feeling, an episode in one's life who may carry or wear Dior.  It is with this human experience behind the idea of a brand that allows them the liberty to do what they want.  Their fans will pay for it in the products they buy, because THEY WANT the films, the runway shows, the couture lines, the ready to wear, the A-list opening parties (reflecting who they wish to be), the collaborations with other fashion houses and/or designers, artists, celebrities!  They want the feeling of Luxury in their bodies, they want to own it and that's why WE all buy into it!  What a Glamorous world we live in!  Watch this great example of bonding fashion, music, film, and much more by Dior below:


Part 1, Lady Blue Shanghai, for Dior by David Lynch starring Marion Cotillard




Part 2, Lady Blue Shanghai, for Dior by David Lynch starring Marion Cotillard





Watch Part Three HERE

Friday, July 16, 2010

HOT IN THE CITY WITH AK47 ICE CUBES!




Up until about three weeks ago in Prague it felt like late October in New York, misty, cool during the day, cold at night, dark, etc. but lately, this city has turned the mercury way up!  I was driving in the car today and realized that the outside temp on the thermometer read 38.5!  Having grown up using the Farenheit system my mind still doesn't really register the actual temperature outside having read the numbers in Celsius.  So, I did the calculation today and was clearly made aware that the temperature outside converted to 101.3F!  I've lived in hot places before and yes, overtime you do become accustomed to the heat.  The problem with the heat in Prague is that it comes on like a race car. There is no in between, no adaptation period, it's plain body shock.

Having said that, here's some ideas for keeping elegantly cool during these Dog Days of Summer.

Ice Ice Baby.

These AK47 Ice Cube Trays aim to please both you and your guests every time.  Not only are the bullet shaped ice cubes cool, but they are also highly functional as they fit well into most glassware shapes.

Make sure you buy plenty as you can never have enough ice lying around on a hot Summer's day.

The AK47 Ice Cube Trays are available online at www.charlesandmarie.com

For direct ordering information click here.






Walk this way.

Reef has always done great summer wear and for the past few years they've had some great lines reaching all of our needs.

Check out pimptastic, I've got 3 pairs in red velvet for the house and I also own the Reef Mick Spackler's but mine have the golf ball heel as seen in the picture (below right).

I bought 4 pairs when I found them in my size so in case they stopped production I'd have them for years and years.

I managed to find an online seller who's still carrying them
www.gifts.com   For direct ordering information click here.


Ultimate outdoor fun.

Welll,  I think if you really want to have fun outside then everyone should own the Bansai Geyser Blast Sprinkler  Even if you have a pool or live by the ocean or a lake, don't deny yourself or your children from one of these gems!  Just take it out of the box and hook it up to your garden hose and bam, you've just saved yourself a drive to the annoying and overcrowded aqua park!



Serving Cocktails and Lemonade.


I think I'll end with the ultimate outdoor hot summer's day need!  The  Gucci Lemonade Set with Pitcher.  See pitcher to the right in a photo at our home being used as a flower vase.  They are rare finds, so, I can't recommend where to find or buy them.  I did however, find this exceptional vintage set of Gucci Scotch Glasses that should add some spice to your pool party which are available at www.worthpoint.com or directly here.





Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Skulls, Alexander McQeen, and JKC on the Costa del Sol!



Recently while traveling in Spain, a friend and I were strolling along the port road in Puerta Banus and came across a shop called Elite Trend.  This shop was apparently another branch of a store called only "Elite," which we had visited earlier in the day.  Elite at Edif. Benabola 8, (in the main entrance to the port) carried  very hard to find items and some other very unique and fun stuff too!  In Elite you can find a large selection of rare Alexander McQueen goods such as the skull print tank top and of course his signature canvas clutch bags which have become the new rage after his untimely death, a devastating loss for the fashion world, best described in the words of Anna Wintour below:
"We are devastated to learn of the death of Alexander McQueen, one of the greatest talents of his generation. He brought a uniquely British sense of daring and aesthetic fearlessness to the global stage of fashion. In such a short career, Alexander McQueen’s influence was astonishing — from street style, to music culture and the world’s museums. His passing marks an insurmountable loss."

 The McQueen Canvas Clutch is available online too at www.bergdorfgoodman.com or link directly to order here.
The most interesting item I found that lovely afternoon at the port was at the Elite Trend shop on the port road itself. I came across a quirky and functional line of other canvas totes.  I'm a huge fan of canvas totes and have actually designed and had produced one myself.  I also have a Gucci Runway Canvas Tote that was a truly rare find and I cherish it and use it on hot Summer days when its outfit appropriate.  


So, when these bags presented themselves to me, I thought immediately they were a must have for people in the know and who basically have almost everything on the planet beside a private jet!  The price point was good, the bag was sturdy, functional, and stylie all at the same time.  And so you ask,  "What's this bag all about?"  Well it's pretty simple stuff, but Jessica Kagan Cushman is pushing out a whole line of incredibly fun and affordable accessories.  The bag I bought shown above in baby blue just fit my personality so well that it couldn't be passed by. I bought the largest size they had and have been using it religiously for the past week or so as an alternative gym bag, park tote, and beach bag!   
Jessica Kagan Cushman's full line is available on her website at www.jessicacushman.com.  Really, check it out now....she's got some really hip stuff happening like the skull ring in the photo on the left.
Note to Jessica:  Get some cufflinks moving into production soon, align with Simon Carter and move those baby's like wildfire!  Call me when you do and I'll be your first client!







Monday, July 12, 2010

It's about Passion too!



Technically, this blog is about shopping, but it's also about things I am passionate about and take a real interest in.  One of the things that I find most inspiring about in life is the ability to achieve something special, to create, and be challenged and most of all I'd have to say that I believe in the ability to make anything happen as long as you are willing to work damn hard for it.

So it is without abandon that I write this quite personal blog.  I came across the video above when surfing the net to "share" an item on Facebook and all of this just came rushing through my head in an instant.  Thank the lucky stars for the invention of the "share" this on Blogger button on www.youtube.com as it allowed me to create a blog post immediately.  I've worked for Orco Property Group for almost 7 years and finding this video on youtube just brought back to me the clarity of all the hard work everyone at the company has put in since 1991.  If there is one single vision at Orco, in my opinion, it would have to be to reach new limits.  Throughout my time at Orco it must be said that I've been mentored by some of the most intelligent people the world could offer and these people have taught me to reach new levels of achievement by breaking boundaries.

That said,  the video above of Orco Property Group's Zlota 44 Residential Tower in Warsaw, Poland designed by Daniel Libeskind is a true example of what many colleagues and friends have dreamed.  They dreamed to build things better, to collaborate on ideas, to take well to criticism, and to move forward to achieve the impossible.  Zlota 44, once realized and achieved, will be something anyone who ever came in contact with Orco along the way would know what we truly mean by "Imagine the Possibilities."

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Tanning, Tanning, Tanning!

Having just returned from a short beach holiday in Spain, I thought it poignant to write about tanning today.

tan·ning

  [tan-ing] noun: a browning or darkening of the skin, as by exposure to the sun defined by www.dictionary.com 

 As most of you probably already know...I tan..I tan all the time.  It's not what you think, it's not only about bronzing my skin which in fact, does make me look BETTER, but it's also about the warm sun or uv light hitting my skin, making me feel warm, making me feel stress free...like i'm on a beach in Tahiti even though I'm at some "Solarium" in Prague taking in my rays in the MegaSun 6000 Sun Bed!  It takes me away, to a time when tanning was part of my daily summer and later, winter regiment.

I get it though,  we need to protect ourselves as with anything we may do on a regular basis that could be harmful, like driving a car or walking across the street, "Look both ways!"  YES, of course I believe in protection.  Any serious tanner does.  I'd even dare to say that we believe more in short term exposure for long durations for safety and all exposure includes some type of:

sun protection factor    
n.  Abbr. SPF 
The degree to which a sunscreen, suntan lotion, or 
similar preparation protects the skin from ultraviolet rays, 
usually expressed numerically.
www.dictionary.com

If you don't use spf products, please start.  I use spf every time I go in the sun or near a tanning or sun bed.  I have some of my favorite, but its important to make sure that you start with something that doesn't allow you to burn.

The basic issue here is not to burn in my book.  You don't want to look like the annoying orange walking around the office or into your next social gathering, you want brown skin...or at least I do.  To achieve this I reapply constantly and make sure to not use 0 factor for more than 10 minutes EVER.  I then move up the factor chain as the day progresses.  In simple terms, I start with a Hawaiian Tropic Spray Oil in factor 4 or 6 depending on how tan I am already...know your burning limits and constantly reAPPLY.  I then move onto a spf 8-12, again based on exposure and color of skin, but believe me, by 2 hrs into the day I've moved onto 30+!  No BURN equals Good Tan and it's better for your skin.  I'm not advocating here. If you don't like the Sun, stay indoors, but if you go outside put on the sunscreen.

Finally, if you do choose to worship the sun, do it in style

www.suncanihvar.com in Croatia
www.hotelguadalmina.com in Spain






Health & Wellness Spa Retreat, Kamalaya Koh Samui, Thailand



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