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Wanderlust: Château Gütsch, Lucerne



Decorator Martyn Lawrence Bullard recently revamped new life into the historic Château Gütsch, a grand hotel in the Swiss city of Lucerne.  With panoramic views of the city and
Lake Vierwaldstätter, the 27 room hotel was built as a private residence in 1888 by architect Emil Vogt.  Vogt was inspired by the Bavarian castle Neuschwanstein as he sought to create a fairytale Belle-Epoque palace. 


 Bullard designed the interiors with the integrity of the architecture in mind while adding modern amenities.  He incorporated ancestral portraits from the original owners’ collection, Louis XV–style furniture, and Swiss and Gustavian antiques.


The grand public spaces have been brought back to their original scale with very careful attention paid to the historic decorative details including the plaster work, wood carving, parquet flooring and paneling. 


How amazing is this view?  I could sit on this patio all day.


The decor is lovely but look at the view outside the window!  As a designer, it would be a dream to design such a masterpiece.  Mr. Bullard, you are one lucky man.


This hotel is definitely on my bucket list.  I can't imagine a more beautiful place to visit.



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Photos via here

Design Inspiration: Kitchens With a Touch of Gold


Happy Monday!  I hope you had a great weekend.  It was full of celebrations here and I am exhausted!  We started with a family dinner, evening of celebrating our son's 17th birthday, followed by a party/sleepover of 15 kids, and wrapped it up with a 1904 World's Fair Festival on yesterday afternoon.  The weather couldn't have been more beautiful!  It was perfect.

Lately, I'm smitten with gold in the kitchen.  I want to incorporate it into my own and I have been seeking inspiration on the web... mostly my go-to site, Pinterest.

Home Archives | Page 2 of 11 | could i have that?
Love these gold hammered pendant lights.. I'm smitten with the gold and marble combination

White, of course, is elemental in a kitchen; it will never go out of style. (MICHELLE MOLLINGA/MICHELLE MOLLINGA)
While this isn't my style, I love the natural element of wood paired with modern touches.

Too glam for our space (maybe), but nice use of shiny surfaces to bounce light about a dark space.  There's a lot a like about this!  from Attractive Kitchen Tile Backsplash | Decozilla
The glossy cabinets, brown marble countertops, and gold tiled backsplash are astonishing and elegant.

Gold glam kitchen with carrara marble back splash, counter tops, and tiled floor! MCM light fixture to die for. Love how big this small kitchen feels. Gold kitchen by Jean Louis Deniot
This glam kitchen is by my design crush, Jean-Louis Deniot.  Once again, {hammered} gold paired with marble.  Design perfection.

classic galley kitchen. See more images from secrets to redecorating a grown-up nashville home on
This is another favourite kitchen.  Just a touch of gold goes a long way, wouldn't you agree?

The centerpiece of Jamie Drake's Manhattan kitchen is a custom-made island comprising cabinetry finished in gold leaf by the Alpha Workshops and an overlapping table in Corian with gold inlay by Orion R|E|D Inc.
I love Jamie Drake's Manhattan kitchen

kitchen stools, kitchen island, gold cabinets

Boho chic house tour by {this is glamorous}, via Flickr! #laylagrayce #hometour #kitchen
The chandelier and pulls add an elegant touch.

Wishing you a beautiful week!



If you would like help in creating a home you love, please contact me at

Photos via here

Bon Weekend, Plus Couture Cocktails


I hope you had a wonderful week and a fabulous weekend planned!  Today is my oldest son's 17th birthday!  Where does time go?  I can't believe it.  It seems like yesterday he was born and I became a mother for the first time.  Today, he is over 6' tall and a junior in high school.  He is a great son and I love him so much.  We will be celebrating all weekend - a family dinner tonight and a several of his friends will be sleeping over on Saturday.  Hopefully, Sunday I will be a day to catch up and relax a bit before a new week.


Couture Cocktails

Blackberry Thyme Sparkle

Blackberry Thyme Sparkler

(Makes 4 Cocktails)
1 c. blackberries + 8 more for garnish
1 c. Water
1 c. sugar
1 bottle of champagne
4 ounces or 1/2 c. gin
4 long sprigs of thyme
1 c. ice
 gold baking sugar for the rim
In a small saucepan, bring blackberries, water, and sugar to a boil.  Reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes, until the blackberries are soft and the simple syrup has turned to a bright pink/red color. Remove from heat, drain blackberries, and allow to cool.  This step can be done well in advance as the syrup will keep for at least a week in the refrigerator.
Prepare your champagne glasses.  Okay, so here is a dirty little secret of getting those beautiful salts and sugars to stay atop the rim: butter.  It adheres perfectly and you honestly never taste it. Place the tiniest amount between your fingers and rub just around the rim of the glass before dipping the glass into the gold baking sugar.
Next, begin by adding 1 ounce of gin to each champagne glass.  Next drop two blackberries in each glass, followed by 2 ounces of homemade blackberry simple syrup. Fill the rest of the glass with champagne and top with a sprig of thyme in each glass. Voila!

Do you have any weekend plans?



If you would like help in creating a home you love, please contact me at

Image via here, recipe here

In Remembrance - 9/11/2001


As I write this, 13 years ago today the airliners were in motion... the images and videos still resonate, reminding us of the physical and emotional devastation, the chaos, many people felt around the world on 9/11/2011 and continue to feel today. The last time I was in NYC the memorial wasn't complete.. I hope to visit next year. A beautiful tribute of remembrance to honor those who lost their life on that day.

I will never forget where I was the day of the attacks.  I took our sons, Isabella wasn't born yet, to a donut shop for breakfast before our oldest son's, Anthony, preschool class.  Brendan was only 1 yrs.  We were on our way to school when my husband called and told me of the attacks.  When I arrived at the preschool, no one had heard of the attacks yet.  I rushed home to watch television and was glued to it, in tears, for the next 24 hours.  When the first tower came crashing down, I burst into tears and shortly after, the second tower fell.  I can't watch the footage to this day.  It was devastating.  I can barely write this post without crying.  I will never forget.

Do you remember where you were at the time/day of the attacks?



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photo sources: unknown

A Fairytale Wedding and a Famous Château


As many of you know, Brad and Angelina recently wed at their home, Château Miraval in Brignoles, France but many aren't familiar with it's history.

It has been purchased many times with renovations added to the property, which now includes 35 bedrooms, a spa, gym, home theatre, game room, dirt bike course, two helicopter pads, a lake, indoor and outdoor pools, pine forests, olive groves, and a moat.  Who wouldn't want a moat?  Jolie had a 200 year-old olive tree transplanted in the family's garden in 2010.

Perched upon 1,000 acres, 75 of which are devoted to producing wine.  The vineyards were created using organic and produce some of the best rosé, ranked upon the best 100 in 2013.  Miraval wines were launched on Valentine's Day in 2013 in collaboration with the Perrin family.  In March, their first 6,000 bottles of rosé sold out in 5 minutes.  Other wines include: grenache noir, blanc, and cabernet sauvignon.

IVV159 MIraval Cave

The French-gothic style chapel on the grounds is where the wedding took place.  It was rebuilt in 1880 and fits about 20 people, perfect for a small wedding with just family and friends.

The château has a history ~ 
The charming chateau's history dates back to the 13th century when it was a monastery.  It is believed philosopher and theologian, Saint Thomass of Aquinas, spent several days here.  In the 15th century, it was listed as a noble home when the Prince of Naples relocated to join the French Court.  In 1970, Château Miraval was purchased by legendary jazz pianist, Jacques Loussier, who created a recording studio on the property.  Pink Floyd recorded tracks for "The Wall" there in 1979.  Other artists recording here include AC/DC, Sting, and Muse. 

Angelina's Atelier Versace silk-satin dress featured detailed embroidered drawings of their six children.  Their artwork also appeared on Jolie's silk veil.

Brad and Angie's wedding was a strictly family affair. Image:

All six children took part in the wedding ceremony with their eldest sons, Maddox and Pax, walking the bride down the aisle.  Zahara and Vivienne threw flower petals while Shiloh and Knox served as ring bearers.  Handwritten vows were exchanged with tears in their eyes as they read them to each other.

A very happy family on a very special day! Image:
The family photo above is my favourite.  You can feel their happiness and sense of closeness as a family.

Brad and Angelina cut their wedding cake, which was made by their son, Pax.

Jolie stated, "It was important to us that the day was relaxed and full of laughter," the blissful newlyweds said in a statement. "It was such a special day to share with our children and a very happy time for our family."

You may now kiss the bride. Image:

I love the expressions while mom and dad kiss!

Brad Pitt's parents, William and Jane Pitt , with Zahara , Shiloh , Vivienne and Knox. Image:
Brad Pitt’s parents, William and Jane Pitt , with Zahara , Shiloh , Vivienne and Knox.

I believe the wedding was perfect and wouldn't change a thing!



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sources here, here, and here   

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