Cairo versus Helsinki

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Cairo, the capital of Egypt, home to the Pyramids, the Egyptian Museum and fabulous Islamic architecture! I have unfortunately not been able to visit these beautiful places. Egypt is still suffering instability. I was not allowed to leave the hotel. At the swimming pool the air felt cold. So what to do next? Well, I did a lot of eating, reading, relaxing and sleeping. A beautiful and loud hotel wedding party was by far the most entertaining thing I saw in Cairo!


Cold and crispy Helsinki instead of Toronto. Desiré and I were supposed to be in Toronto upcoming days. But our flight was canceled, due to snow storms on the east coast of the United States. Instead Desiré had to travel to Egypt and I touched down in Finland. The influences of the Baltic states can be seen in the architecture of the Central Railway Station. It is a widely recognised landmark in Kluuvi, part of central Helsinki. The Atheneum Art Museum is an impressive old classical European building and Kiasma, the Museum of Contemporary Art, is modern with Scandinavian roots. So a lot of interesting styles mixed in one city. The Finnish company Marimekko, based in Helsinki, is a must visit! It is a well known Finnish design house celebrated worldwide for its original prints and colors. Marimekko has made important contributions to fashion, especially in the 1960s. Unfortunately I had only a couple of hours to wander around in Helsinki. But still I had a good glimpse of the city and what she has to offer!

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Malibu & More

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Back in LA after a long flight from Amsterdam. We were walking on Manhattan Boulevard that evening when we met Bob, a ninety year old local, with whom we had a drink at a local bar. That’s the nice thing about travelling: meeting people, having interesting conversations, seeing things from another prospective. Later that night we had dinner, Bob not included, in MB Post were we had a playful, artisan menu of small shared plates. All this being seated at a communal table which was a nice change from the also available booths and standard tables.

The next day we went to Malibu Wines in the Malibu mountains. Malibu Wines is open seven days a week year round and closes only for Thanksgiving and Christmas Day. Due to low season it was very quiet at the moment we were there. It is a nice setting for a picnic, as you are allowed to bring your own food and non-alcoholic beverages. After this visit we crossed the mountains and ended up in Malibu near the Pacific Coast and had lunch at Paradise Cove. It is a beautiful spot to spend your day on the beach accompanied by lots of sea gulls and the Ahi Tuna was delicious! At the end of the day we drove from Malibu to Santa Monica and visited The Bungalow. The Bungalow has five distinct spaces for people to mingle: The Study, a main bar, an outside deck, a State Room, East Garden for private dining and a game room.

Last day: Los Feliz, where we had never been before, so a new district to visit. It is situated near Hollywood and a part of the Santa Monica Mountains. It is known for its expensive historic homes and celebrity inhabitants. We had lunch at Fred 62. It has a fabulously funky retro-diner interior (you can also spot it in the movie ‘spread’). While having lunch at Fred 62 you can spot hipsters, businessmen, old people and movie stars walking by on Vermont Avenue. Never a dull moment! Los Feliz has very nice little shops, a lot of vintage stores and a small theater. Absolutely a place to hang around. We watched the sunset on the rooftop bar of Hotel Erwin in Venice Beach later that day, covered under a blanket with a nice glass of wine, accompanied by the sun, the moon and the stars. We had a splendid view over Venice Beach, Hollywood, Beverly Hills and Santa Monica. At that moment we felt like being on top of the world!

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Palm Springs and Joshua Tree National Park

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Celebrating the launch of our website Don't Disturb The Sheep at Little Sisters on Manhattan Beach was a good start of our trip to Los Angeles this time! Don't Disturb The Sheep had just gone live!!! We were so excited! The next morning we drove to Palm Springs. A two hour drive from Torrance where our hotel is situated. On our way we saw wonderful landscapes. Later on we stopped for a short visit at the outlet mall just half an hour from Palm Springs. Meanwhile, these girls on a mission bought some duktape at the Super Target because we had to repair our small blue box on wheels ;-)! We stayed at the Ace hotel in Palm Springs. The price you pay for a room is eye watering, but the ambiance is great. Overall it's a nice, hip and relaxed place to stay. In our room we had an old fashioned record player, shutters with artwork, Moroccan robes, nice smelling shower gel, lotion, hair shampoo and a patio. This made our stay very pleasant. We went to restaurant Workshop in Palm Springs that night to have dinner. The restaurant is well designed using a lot of concrete and a great menu to choose from. The next day we went to Joshua Tree National Park. You pay a fee in advance and once in the park you can drive wherever you want. What a beautiful scenery! Worth a visit. We didn't hike through the park but drove around, princesses as we are ;-)! We spotted an old Airstreamer in the middle of nowhere and tortured our small box on wheels to that place. It was like being on a movie set!

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