Places posts

Places | Guéthary

Almost two years to the day later, I found myself back in Basque country. Like my first visit, I came for work but this time I got to see more of that which surrounds. Guéthary is a mini version of California a sort of “best of” North and South.

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Places | I ♡ Biarritz

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"Le véritable voyage de découverte ne consiste pas à chercher de nouveaux paysages, mais à avoir de nouveaux yeux."
    - Marcel Proust

Places | Tower 12

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Places | Shanghai

from the desk of:


Shanghai places curated by Julie Liu.

Favorite Hot Pot:  “Kuo Bee Pen Da”, Taiwanese hot pot where you can mix your own sauces.
Favorite Dumpling Spot:  “Ding Tai Fung”, always consistent, always good.
Hidden Gem: “Southern Barbarian” for Yunnan food; the best fried goat cheese, spicy mint salad and wild mushrooms.
Best City View: “Park Hyatt Shanghai”, for afternoon tea.
Favorite Traditional Shanghainese Restaurant: “Jessie”, order the fish head in advance, it’s baked under a mountain of scallions and is divine.
Best City Escape: Midnight bike rides around the French Concession
Best Place To Buy Something: “Spin” for ceramics, “Cha Mi” for quality tea.
Favorite Hang Out Spot: “The Grumpy Pig”, I’m partial to this because this is Vinh’s place, but I’ve spent many afternoons and evenings here with friends. The atrium is lovely, the drinks tasty, and the pork focused food is pure comfort.

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Places | Dong Liang

new wave


Walking down Fumin Lu in Shanghai’s Jing’an part of town, I almost missed Dong Liang; it comes off quite demure next to the surrounding Chinese hustle. Inside I found it equally soft spoken. However, once I learned that the concept store is about “discovery”, I realized that its understatedness is its charm. Inside and out its a hidden gem.

Tasha, who runs the Shanghai location, is stylish, gracious and speaks perfect English.  She helped to curate the store’s “exclusively Chinese” offering; a collection of China’s best independent designers; most of them still unsung. She’s also a great resource, talking with Tasha about the designers is like having your very own crash course on China’s up and coming fashion scene.  If you’re in Shanghai or Beijing (they have two stores there as well) it’s definitely worth a visit.

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Places | Rock Bund, Shanghai

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Places | The Waterhouse, Shanghai

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Places | Deus Canngu

easy rider


Deus is a lifestyle brand with stores located in Australia, New Zealand, Bali and as of a couple a months ago: Venice Beach, California. However, the Canngu Bali location I recently visited (appropriately named “Temple of Enthusiasm”) is something in and of itself …

Part curated store, art gallery, artist space and garage  (where they deconstruct vintage motorbikes then powder coat and rework them into mint condition) Deus Canngu is a creative commune of sorts. One building is a pristine white photo studio, opposite that there’s a shaping bay and at the front of it all, a Thai food restaurant and a bar.  With comfy couches amidst all this good stuff and the Balinese lushness that abounds, it’s easy to see how this place has quickly become the local go to spot for getting together with like-minded friends.

“Deus Ex Machina” is hard to define because it’s not just one thing.  I think Dare Jennings, the Australian creator of Mambo, must have conceived his love child of a brand with this concept in mind but unlike the many places that try to do: “lifestyle”, he’s one of the few that not only succeeded in doing it right; in the process he also created his own cultural hub.

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Places | Finn’s Beach Club, Bali

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