Footprints on a Deserted Beach in Panama

After running onto a stretch of deserted beach on the island of Chapera, near Contadora, Panama, my friend and I looked back and just loved that there were literally only two sets of footprints for as far as we could see! So simple, but what an experience. It was a definite “this is why I travel moment” that kicked off a wonderful morning of playing in the sand, taking in the turquoise water and basking in the searing sun. Las Vegas, I love you, but all of the champagne in the world couldn’t take the place of that perfect morning!

Champagne Campaign

So it wasn’t all bad… I recently mentioned all of the work commitments that led me to major burnout, and now I feel obligated to tell you that some of the events are very, very fun. (The burnout comes from weeks of not being able to get a good night’s sleep, do laundry, or spend time with my dogs, rescues from Costa Rica.) The Las Vegas Strip recently hosted a huge food and wine festival called Vegas UnCork’d, and my foodie friend Cat De Orio came in from Chicago for it. We kicked off the four-day extravaganza with (what else?) some Veuve Clicquot — delivered to our fabulous suite at the Cosmopolitan.

Don’t you think the Rubik’s Cube is a nice touch?

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Love in Jerome, Arizona

Jerome, ArizonaI just finished another whirlwind three-day tour of the southwest, including the charming mountain town of Jerome, Arizona. I fell for this charming gate that is soldered shut — an innocent-looking design denoting love that bars about eight “no trespassing” signs on a pink house that is now decrepit. Many more posts to come, but for now, I have a big party to prep for! One of my favorite parts about living in Las Vegas is how much there is to do outside of town. Just get in your car and drive: You’ll be rewarded with hours and hours of wide open spaces, gorgeous views and plenty of quirky towns to spend your free time. And then you make it home just in time for whatever A-list party is going on that night.

See you there?

Bronzed: Where Las Vegas strippers and socialites collide

Las Vegas women swear by their spray tans, and they all head here, to Bronzed, for a private session with the maestro himself, Terry. Everyone goes to him, from the Strip headliners and socialites at the highest levels (no, I can’t name names!), to the cocktail servers and strippers who come in in the evenings on the way to work. Oh, and me. I would never do any public speaking without a private tan or attend or host a fancy event (with more public speaking) without being properly bronzed. This doesn’t matter what month of the year it is either. “Party Prep” means making a tan appointment. I’d rather shiver in January with tanned legs than (yuck) wear tights.

It’s just the Vegas way.

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Different Kind of Pool Club

Sometimes, nothing beats a dip in the pool.

In Las Vegas, a “pool club” often means a cabana with a flat-screen TV, celebrity host in a barely-there bikini, and loads of tourists dancing to loud music. This here, is what I prefer. When I lived in Costa Rica, the Club at Coco Bay wasn’t open to the public. Now, for a small fee, you can have access to the gorgeous haven, for those days when chlorine beckons. I grew up in Florida and love the beach, especially the sounds of the ocean and gazing off to the horizon. But sometimes, nothing beats a refreshing dip in the pool. Happy Friday, everybody! I’ll be daydreaming about meeting my friend Lisa for a girls’ afternoon at this pool.

Costa Rica coffee yum

Costa Rica coffee is some of the most renowned in the world. I have never returned from a trip there without 1820 and Cafe Britt in my suitcase for somebody — I’ve even twice mailed it to strangers (aka online travel friends) who had a craving for it! Me? I don’t drink coffee. I have enough problems turning off my brain to sleep at night without adding caffeine to the mix. While I was living in Spain during college, I was in a (ten-year) “no red meat” phase, and during my year in Costa Rica, I didn’t drink coffee. Sigh. Well, during my recent trip, my friends (locals) drank enough coffee for me.

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