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I love ALL Kinds of Shoes…

6 Jan

By Christabelle…@CBellesCloset

christina carathanassis

Wilderness Rocks
Fun adventures in the Catskills

I love shoes (you all already know this about me).  I even like THESE kinds of shoes – snowshoes (yes, you heard me right).

If you are looking for something new, different and fun to do this winter (with your gang or just your POC Partner in Crime), I found a great, economic getaway that is not only FUN, but a good workout. They have a delicious menu of outings available (does a Winter Hike and Winery Adventure or Campfires, Hot Cocoa…and Sauna sound yum-yum to you…yeah, me too!).

See you in the wilderness (I will be the cute brunette wearing red-bottom snowshoes…it could happen!).

–Brian, Bloomspot Staff Writer

Winter Hike and Winery Adventure with Wilderness Rocks (Catskills, NY)
Dust off your boots, slip on your gloves and don your hat for this winter hike in the woods and afternoon at a winery. Enjoy the sharp, chill, crisp air on this moderate day hike that will get your heart pumping—after all, that’s the best way to stay warm on a cold day! And if there is snow then we will tromp down the trail in snowshoes and enjoy a snowy hike.

Imagine swapping skyscrapers for towering pines. Trading stale subway air for an alpine breeze. Replacing honking horns with a crackling wood fire. City life is amazing, but sometimes we all need to get back in touch with nature—Wilderness Rocks gets you there.

Led by two intrepid adventurers (and their friendly pooch), Wilderness Rocks is all about appreciating the great outdoors. Whether you’re enjoying the idyllic beauty of a frozen waterfall or learning the art of snowshoeing through the forest, these guides create a fun, interactive experience for the entire group.

Convenient pick-up locations throughout New York City
(917) 566-0065

Members of Bloomspot: Special discounted prices thru 3/31/2013

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27 East – Straight to Paradise…

23 May

By Christabelle…@CBellesCloset

MONTACO’S – the signature dish of 668 The Gig Shack:
House made tortilla, crisp red slaw, blackend local catch of the day and sweet mango salsa.

The time has come…summer Friday’s have officially begun…and the air is starting to smell beachy (or in the case of NYC, sometimes like rotting garbage in the sun…) but nonetheless all signs that summer has arrived.  If you know me well (and since I have been blogging here for 100 years, YOU SHOULD)…I wait with bated breath every year for this weekend to arrive – for the summer season to “officially begin” and I can make my way to 27E which drops me off in my little slice of heaven…Montauk.

First stop when I get into town…where else? 668 The Gig Shack. I am going to swing by and say hello to the always amazing and never less than fabulous Gardell family (I heart you all!). Have me a Blue Moon Beer with a slice of orange, a Montaco (if you haven’t had one, you have yet to live life), and let my summer unfold in front of me.

Navy Beach at Fort Pond Bay in Montauk
(Photo Rights: Navy Beach Restaurant)

Next stop…catch another cocktail and watch the sun set into Fort Pond Bay (just steps away from my own place) – Navy Beach. With cushy outdoor white couches, ocean blue umbrellas and yachts pulling up close to shore, this place feels more like Santorini than Montauk.  And if the wonderful food, drink and atmosphere at Navy Beach just isn’t enough for you, wait for the mind-blowing sunset into the water – and that is FREE of charge.

Dinner, you ask? I have been waiting for almost a year to chow down on The Harvest’s famed Calamari Salad with Red Pepper Vinaigrette with some Garlic Mashed Potatoes on the side. Ok, ok…I know that doesn’t sound like the classiest of “pairings” but I don’t care. I salivate all year waiting to eat both…so deal. If you come to the Harvest on Fort Pond – come hungry! The portions are family style and they are deliciously generous!

Meet me out, won’t you? Bon Appetit, Montauk!

The famous Montauk sunset – taken from my deck (lucky me!)

668 The Gigshack
782 Main Street
Montauk, NY 11954

Navy Beach Restaurant
16 Navy Road
Montauk, NY 11954
(631) 668-6868

Harvest On Fort Pond
11 S. Emery Street
Montauk, NY 11954

Memorial Day Options in the Pocono Mountains…

1 May

By Christabelle…

A great memorial day weekend adventure is only a short distance away (if  you live in the New York City area).  The Pocono Mountains is an ideal place to bring family, friends and loved ones together for the upcoming holiday weekend.  From someone who spent many years vacationing in Jim Thorpe, PA, I can only speak wonders about the beautiful landscapes and the fun outdoor adventures available in the Pocono mountains.

Check out some of these great locations for Memorial Day weekend and beyond:

The Harry Packer Mansion

Fernwood Resort  

Shawnee Resort

Skytop Resort

Mount Airy Resort

Book now for the best holiday weekend deals…and tell them Christabelle sent you!

Organically Caesar…

23 Feb

By Christabelle…

Qua Baths & Spa at Caesars

Just in time for spring, Qua Baths & Spa at Caesars Palace has added four organic spa treatments to its menu. These fresh new treatments are designed to firm, refresh and brighten skin using all-natural products and ingredients. Guests will be able to enjoy these eco-friendly treatments as a permanent part of the menu beginning March 9.

Tea & Sea Organic Body Scrub (50-minutes; $150)

Using powerful antioxidants, vitamins and minerals derived from organic white tea leaves and seaweed, the Tea & Sea Organic Body Scrub begins with a delicate citrus-kombucha tea body wash followed by an almond-orange fruit and nut scrub to cleanse and exfoliate the skin. Vichy shower streams warmed to perfection heat the body, while a scented coconut argan oil scalp massage is performed. Applied to warm, polished skin, the final application of body butter, containing grape stem cell, white tea and seaweed, melts in to the skin leaving it radiant and silky smooth.

Anti-Cellulite & Body Firming Wrap (50-minutes; $180)

Designed to tighten and firm the body using nature’s super-rich defense compounds found in coffee berries, this body wrap will enhance the appearance of skin’s texture with a combination of enzymes and formulated body-shaping complex. While skin is nourished and polished using all natural ingredients, a relaxing scalp and slimming massage will aid in stress-relief and detoxification transpiring a confident new radiance.

CoffeeBerry® Yoga Facial (50-minutes; $200)

The relaxing, anti-aging CoffeeBerry Yoga Facial is designed to improve areas that show the most signs of aging: face, neck, décolletage and hands. This all-natural, results-oriented treatment will reduce tension and stress levels as well as brighten and even overall skin tone. The synergetic effects of detoxification, massage, lifting techniques and increased circulation will leave the skin with a natural lift and smoother lines.

Qua Mystic Journey (75-minutes; $300)

This astonishing body and facial ritual combines the most lavish experiences beginning with a warm coconut argan oil application along the spine followed by a ginger lime sugar scrub. A soothing, organic body oil is applied before being gently wrapped in a blanket of warm towels during a stimulating scalp massage and restorative facial to stimulate the essential functions of the skin and aid in the repair of cell damage.

For more information on Qua Baths & Spa at Caesars Palace or to book an organic spa treatment, visit or call (866) 782-0655.


The stylish 50,000-square-foot Qua Baths & Spa taps into the natural healing powers of hot and cold water therapy featuring Roman Baths, an ancient bathing ritual featuring three pools of varying temperatures. Amenities also include the Arctic Ice room, Laconium room, herbal steam room, cedar wood sauna and whirlpool. Offering 51 treatment rooms including three deluxe couples’ studios and seven facial rooms, highly trained artisans perform a full range of treatments and wellness rituals from massages, to Ayurvedic treatments, to hypnotherapy and chakra balancing. Qua has recently been named among the nation’s best spas in Condé Nast Traveler magazine’s “Hot List,” and received five 2011 SpaFinder Readers Choice awards including “Favorite Spa Treatment,” “Best for Luxury,” “Best For Men,” “Best for Interior Design” and “Top 10 Best Spa in a Hotel Casino.” Qua is open daily from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. More information can be found at

Cancun Wine and Food Festival…March 2012

25 Aug

By Christabelle…

I have always associated Cancun with Spring Break back in my days at the  University of Rhode Island. But today, I found out that this picturesque tourist location will host a 5 star Wine and Food Festival in Spring 2012 and my mind switched gears instantly. Gone are the visions of the foam party and Senor Frogs…and in its place, visions of mouth-watering cuisine, fine wine and stunning landscapes to explore. Where do I sign up?!

Mark your calendars! The countdown to the First Annual “Cancun-Riviera Maya Wine & Food Festival” has begun. The inaugural event will take place on March 15-18th, 2012 attracting national and international guests to one of the most popular and picturesque destinations in the world.

This new event concept will bring together celebrity chefs, wine and spirit producers from all over the world, and some of Mexico’s most exquisite cuisine. The festival will honor its special – the world-renowned chef, Ferran Adria. The festival will feature about thirty events throughout a period of four days and will also feature participating countries such as Canada, United States, Mexico, Argentina, Brazil, Chile and Peru, coming together  to offer the best of their culinary talents, its wineries and spirits as well as its culture. Now that’s what I’m talkin’ about…

  • Celebrity Chef and Winemaker Dinners

Including two tributes dinners: One to Mexico, designated by UNESCO as “Masterpiece of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity”; the other to world-celebrated chef Ferran Adrià

  • Celebrity Chef and Winemaker Yacht Cruise

Enjoy the company of celebrity chefs on a luxurious yacht cruise followed by a private beach club lunch

  • Exclusive 90+ Wines and Spirits Tastings

The best wines & spirits from Spain and 7 countries of the Americas

  • Exciting Cooking Demonstrations

Given by celebrity chefs from Canada, the USA, Mexico, Argentina, Brazil, Chile and Peru

  • American Express Gourmet Tasting Village

Walk through our Village and taste signature dishes from some of the best restaurant Chefs, paired with wines and spirits. Delight your palate with gourmet company products including coffees, ice creams, chocolates and more…

  • Closing Latin Grill Fiesta

Meet the best Argentinian & Brazilian Grill Chefs “Parrilladas” and enjoy a fiesta featuring surprise entertainment and fireworks.

  • Cancun After-Dark Parties

Sample the best tequilas, vodkas, martinis, tapas and sinful desserts; all while moving to the rhythms created by a top DJ, to take you late into the night

To enhance each guest’s personal experience, the festival organizers will limiting the number of participants at each event, facilitating interaction between guests and celebrity chefs. Famous chefs from 8 countries: Spain: Ferran Adrià; United States: Ingrid Hoffman, Jacques Pepin, Aaron Sanchez, Marcella Valladolid; Chile: Cristián Correa; Canada: Jerome Ferrer, Normand Laprise, Daniel Vezina.; Mexico: Paulina Abascal, Christian Bravo, Sergio Camacho, Aquiles Chávez, Arturo Fernández, Miguel García, Paola Garduño, Guillermo González, Federico López, Francisco Méndez, Benito Molina, Ricardo Muñoz Zurita, Edgar Nuñez, Enrique Olvera, Bruno Oteiza, Patricia Quintana, Carmen Ramírez, Alejandro Ruiz, Roberto Solís, Jonatan Gómez, Jr Merino (honored as the Ambassador of Tourism and Gastronomy in Mexico City and promoter of Mexican beverages.), José Ramón Castillo (Chocolatier),  Enrique Farjeat. Peru Pedro Schiaffino.Top chefs from Argentina and Brazil still to be announced.

For more information visit:

About Cancun

Cancun is located in the northern part of the southeastern Mexican state of Quintana Roo. It is Mexico’s number one tourist destination and is known all over the world for its spectacular beaches, unique beauty and breathtaking turquoise waters.

Cancun’s shoreline recently underwent a $71 Million Dollar makeover, that featured 1.3 billion gallons of sand to renovating the Hotel Zone’s seashore.  The most popular tourism destination in Mexico and Latin America has also added to its sun, beach, and nightlife, by creating a unique five-day route that will offer visitors a chance to experience adventure and interaction with nature. Cancun and the Treasures of the Caribbean invite travelers to discover the vast natural, cultural and gastronomical cultures of Puerto Morelos, and the four islands of the Mexican Caribbean: Holbox, Isla Mujeres, Contoy and Cozumel. Cancun is a multifaceted destination that combines nature, historical Mayan Culture, glamour, luxury and world class tourism with the seduction for adventure, the passion for paradisiacal nature and the enchantment of gastronomical magic.

For more information, visit the Cancun Convention and Visitors Bureau website at:

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