I wore this floral maxi dress when I visited the Hearst Castle a few weeks ago. This was part of our Summer Road Trip and definitely my favorite place that we visited. We were under the impression that we could just drive up to the castle, park, hop out of the car to take some photos and be on our merry way. That was anything but the case. Good thing we checked the website because we would have been in for a big surprise.
Upon arriving we learned that Hearst Castle is more than just a very big house in central California. It is a massive tourist attraction and museum. It was originally built as a summer home of newspaper publisher William Randolph Hearst who built the nation’s largest newspaper chain. He began building this house in the 1920’s and continue adding to it until his death almost 20 years later. The estate now belongs to the State of California and is a museum filled with vintage artifacts and loads of art work that William collected over the years.
Tickets start around $30 for a one hour tour. They take you up to the Castle in a massive tour bus around winding roads for 15 minutes or so. Once you arrive at the Castle you are greeted by your tourist guide where you walk around the property. We got there for the last tour around 5:30. It was perfect timing for us since the crowds of people had dwindled down and the golden hour was approaching.
I am a bit of a history nerd so this was a fun stop for me. I wish I could have gone on a few more tours to see different parts of the castle. We experienced the “Upstairs Suites Tour” and it was really neat seeing all the old bedrooms, especially how they changed over the years to fit different trends of the era. This tour also takes you around a portion of the grounds including the indoor swimming pool (pictured above.) Descendants of William Hearst are still allowed to swim in the pool after tourist hours…and with special permission from the state of course. I could rattle off a million things I learned while on this tour, but then this post would be a mile long. I recommend you just go see the Castle for yourself 😉
Too bad we did not get to see any actors dressed up in 1930’s attire frolicking around the grounds as they would have years go. That would have really been a site to see and taken me back in time to get a glimpse of the castle as it once was. I would definitely go again and just might make a point to include it in my next road trip up the California coast!
Photos by Danny Fung
Believe it or not, I had never been to Canada before. And little did I know that Vancouver is just a 3 hour plane ride from Los Angeles. I decided to tag along with some friends going for the weekend. We arrived around 11pm and checked into the Opus Hotel. A trendy boutique hotel located in Yaletown walking distance to practically everythign complete with a Starbucks right across the street. We actually needed up getting our coffees at the cafe right next to the lobby. (side note- the veggie breakfast wraps they sell are on another level of goodness!)
The four of us shared the Opus Signature Suite and there was plenty of room for everyone. The hot pink textured wall paper and qwerty art work made the room the perfect fit for us fashionistas. Our first morning there we ordered room service and lounged around in bathrobes. It can be difficult to get up and get going when you’re all cozy and comfortable in your hotel room. But the adventure of a new city was calling!
Our first day in Vancouver we rented a car and drove up north a bit to Whitsler Mountain. There are buses that will take you from Vancouver up to Whistler. We just wanted to have the freedom to pull over when ever we wanted to take photos. Whistler and Backcomb are two very popular ski locations in the winter.. During the summer it seems to be just as popular with lots of hiking trails and dirt bike expeditions taking place on the snow-less mountains. Despite a plan to be there hours earlier (hey three bloggers in a car with a million photo opportunities, what can you do?) We managed to make the last lift up to the top at around 5:30pm.
It was about 70 degrees at the bottom of the mountain and it definitely got colder once we got to the top. The wind didn’t help either. Definitely wear tennis shoes/hiking shoes and bring a jacket and a hat! I had a light jacket on while we were up there, but took it off for this photo. The view was worth it, though. I felt like I was on top of the world and the slightly cool clean Canadian air filled my lungs with a fresh perspective on life.
On the ride back we scarfed down McDonald’s (guilty pleasure) and managed to make it to this little spot next to the lake for sunset pictures. To anyone planning a day trip to Whistler- I would definitely recommend getting an earlier start to the day. Getting a rental car always takes longer than you think it will and pack lots of snacks and water since there are not a lot of places to stop until you get into Whistler.
By the time we got back to the hotel I was so beat from the week of work and travel prep that going out on the town was the last thing I had in mind. I ordered in room service and got back in the bathrobe to get a full-night sleep. I’l be sharing part 2 of my Vancouver Travel Diary on the blog soon!
Thanks for reading! xoxo,
Hotel photos by Danny Fung
It has been a while since I’ve shown my bar cart on the blog. The last time was for this Holiday post in 2015! It’s summer now so the items on my bar cart have changed a bit including: candies, fresh fruit and more summer beverages! I always like to have it fully stocked so I am prepared anytime guests decide to stop by.
It is fun and colorful to have an array of different beverages available for my guests. I also like to have plenty of mixer options and non-alcoholic options.
These gorgeous little gold foil tumblers where a house warming present when I first moved in last year.
You’ll always find some kind of candy on my bar cart. Lately it is these white and chocolate swirl Hershey’s kisses. Careful though. They are addicting!
I get so much use out of this little container. It is always holding something for me. As of now I have my favorite wine glass tags in here.
I like to collect engraved wine glasses from the different wineries I have visited. It also makes telling your glass apart from others much easier.
What are your favorite ways to decorate your bar cart? Let me know in the comments below!