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Four Seasons Punta Mita: A Photo Journey

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I recently had the opportunity to spend a few nights at the fantastic Four Seasons Punta Mita during their second annual Gourmet and Golf Classic.

While I’m not a huge golfing fan, getting to spend time with famous chefs like the famed Patricia Quintana, Andrew Ormsby and Four Seasons’ own Philippe Piel and Jose Salas Duarte was a real treat.

Punta Mita lies just 28 miles north of Puerto Vallarta Airport– and it’s down as the crown jewel of Mexico’s Riviera Nayarit. A couple nights here and you’ll see why.

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Everyday you can choose to hang by the beach, or by the adult pool– as we did often pictured here. That is, if you don’t get engaged in dozens of activities from tennis to snorkeling to scuba diving right off the beach.

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Despite such a large resort, it always seemed to feel empty. There was always space, it was rarely loud or crowded. That meant service was always perfect and timely.

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A highlight of the trip was of course the fresh seafood in all the dishes the chefs prepared. Everyday you could order something on the menu as ‘catch of the day’, and actually walk down to the beach at 11am and see what the catch was! Lots of fresh tuna, red snapper, and much more.

Right there on the beach you reserve a piece for lunch or dinner– grilled, in fish tacos, or any other way you like it. So incredible.

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Great shot of a party being setup on the beach!

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Plantain chip, caramelized over flour less chocolate cake.

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Look at that fish! The kids loved it.

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It doesn’t get any fresher than this. Tuna, right out of the ocean a few minutes ago.

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As the sun set, it was time for the grand opening of the Golf and Gourmet Classic!

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Fireworks, and tastings from all the chefs involved. Highly recommend making a trip down there– and I can’t wait to see what they pull off for the event again next year!

iGet.it Popup Shop

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iGet.it is an online members-only community offering designer products hand-picked by renowned international curators.  But now they’re coming to NYC.

Lift Bowls 2  Frederick McSwain

This coming weekend they’re having a Popup shop at Terminal Stores and The Tunnel, located at West 28th street and 11th Avenue.

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Stop by for products by Busso, scarves by Shonquis Moreno (big fan), Milk Stools by Alissia Melka-Teichroew and much more.

Education City Commencement Speech

I was invited to give the commencement speech at the Qatar Foundation 2012 Convocation. An incredible honor.

Qatar’s Education City includes branches of the following universities: Virginia Commonwealth University, Weill Cornell Medical College, Texas A&M University, Carnegie Mellon University, Georgetown University School of Foreign Service, Northwestern University, HEC Paris and UCL.

Video is now up!

Fake Rolex by Shelter Serra

Proportional 940 shelter black watch

In his own words:

“I designed and created the Fake Rolex as a homage to the ultimate watch of status, The Rolex Submariner. Made in a limited edition, from the highest grade silicone available, this fashionable item is now available for all to enjoy and appreciate.”

The Fake Rolex is available for $40 in Black and White, limited to 150 pieces.

IWC Globetrotter

Supporting my friends at IWC around the opening of their flagship NYC store, they filmed a series of short videos– small snippets on a fewindividuals who call NYC home. Naturally for my video, I grew out a beard and then went in for an old fashioned New York hot shave for the Globetrotter video, as well as stopping by some of my favorite NYC establishments. Check it out, I think it turned out nice!

Cocoa Island: Maldives

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The COMO Hotels and Resorts are quickly becoming one of my favorite hospitality groups around the world. After several great stays at The Halkin in London, I knew it was time to see how the resorts side of their business looked with a visit to the famed Cocoa Island in the Maldives.

The island (known locally as Makunufushi) is tucked around the southern part of Malé’s coral atolls– a quick 40-minute speedboat transfer from Malé’s international airport. On our visit to the island we had some inclement weather which made the transfer rather exciting!

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It’s hard not to get excited by the photographs of the island. When you arrive it’s as if you’re showing up to your own private island in paradise. There are only 33 suites and villas sprinkled and spidered across the water giving you total privacy– nearly all of them are fashioned to look like Dhoni’s (Maldives style fishing boats).

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The water underneath these villas at times was less than a foot deep. It was a great place to see rays and my favorite little reef sharks. They looked almost animatronic the way they swam around the shallow waters.  I kept wondering if one of them had frickin’ laser beams attached to their heads.

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The design inside the villa was simple, chic, and totally comfortable. From the moment we arrived it felt like we were right at home. The resort allows you to have every meal inside the living room of your villa if you wish (looking out over the water), or at a small restaurant on the edge of the island. No request was too much for Cocoa Island–they were baking us gluten free bread daily, and accommodating to everything we could imagine needing on our trip.  The quality of the food on the island wins my highest praises.  Nothing was short of absolutely delicious.

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The beauty and serenity of the beaches were just amazing. Sandbars stretched hundreds of yards in several directions making for great strolls around with occasional dips into the bathtub like ocean, and snorkeling galore.

It was on Cocoa island I received my first Scuba Certification from a fantastic instructor named Takashi. We spent a good 30 minutes one afternoon following a sea turtle around the reefs of the island at only 10 meters. A moment I’ll never forget. I’m truly spoiled now!

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Last but not least, the spa can not be missed. Oh yes, the spa. COMO Shambhala knows exactly what they’re doing in this arena. The Ayurvedic style treatments and therapies were absolutely heavenly– as was a visit to their beautiful hydrotherapy pool before a treatment (and for a cool dip after a hot day in the sun).

If you’re considering a trip to The Maldives, I highly recommend putting Cocoa Island on your list. Heavenly.  I can’t wait to go back!

Dave White’s Natural Selection

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My friend Dave White is at it again– this time with a new exhibition (and his largest to date) entitled “Natural Selection” presented by London’s The Hospital Club Gallery and artrepublic.

The show will shine a spotlight on a number of threatened animal species and consist of an array of oil paintings, limited edition prints and works on paper.

Additionally, in celebration of the upcoming exhibition, White and Talenthouse are extending an opportunity to animators, inviting submissions of showreels and short films inspired by the Amazonian Parrot, with the winning animator set to collaborate with White on a brand new piece to be featured in the London show. Those interested can find further info and enter here. “Natural Selection” is set to open on June 22 and run through July 7.

The Hospital Club Gallery
Dave White “Natural Selection”
June 22-July 7, 2012
24 Endell St.
London WC2H 9HQ

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