It’s easy to fall in love with Montclair, New Jersey, especially if you delight in parks, gardens and other green spaces. But this cosmopolitan town is also noted for its vibrant culinary and art offerings. Now, the recently opened luxe MC Hotel taps into this scene by sourcing numerous foods and beverages from local makers as well as paintings and other works created by artists who live nearby. This is my recent article for ForbesLife on the MC Hotel.
Wednesday, December 29, 2021
Monday, December 20, 2021
As I continue my off-season travels, I find myself at the delightful Chateau Inn and Suites in Spring Lake, New Jersey where the vibe is calm, the hospitality is ever present, the views are bucolic and the decor is captivating. (It’s hard to pull away from the sun-fill lounge with its creative holiday blue motif.)
Sipping a glass of pinot noir in the lounge at the Chateau Inn and Suites, I was wrapped in an atmosphere that assured a festive mood.
Spring Lake and the Chateau Inn and Suites that faces the lake have a relaxed vibe with an abundance of holiday cheer.
Saturday, December 18, 2021
Someone just asked me why I would gravitate to the shore in the off season, after all, they said, it’s so quiet. Hmmm, that’s the whole point. But Cape May, New Jersey offers so much more, including captivating Victorian-style architecture that I’m clearly infatuated with.
Between the abundant foliage, Victorian-style architecture and dazzling light, Cape May makes for a dreamy destination.
A small loop trail navigates through a bucolic forest at the Cape May Bird Observatory where birds of all sorts are spotted, including American kestrels, bald eagles and northern harriers. I love birds; but I also came for the trees.
Monday, December 6, 2021
Friday, December 3, 2021
I’m so happy to be part of the NYC Fair Trade Coalition Holiday Gift Guide 2021.
You’ll find unique gifts from small businesses, women-owned businesses.
The Gift Guide makes it easy to shop fair, sustainably and local. (My products are in the Give the Gift of Knowledge section.)
I’ll be discussing my products on @nycfairtrade IG Live this Saturday, December 4 at noon. Viewers will be able to get special offers.
Wednesday, December 1, 2021
Sunday, November 28, 2021
Traveling to Cape May, New Jersey off season has many advantages, from stellar bird watching to empty, windswept beaches.
Without a car, you can still access Cape May by New Jersey Transit Buses — you have to connect through Atlantic City from New York City. The five-hour trip, is worth it for the sense of solitude, whether you roam through the historic district, West Cape May that’s dotted with cafes, coffee shops and restaurants, as well as numerous green spaces.
Friday, November 26, 2021
Saturday, November 13, 2021
A lush green landscape and views of the calm Mystic River accompanied me as I jogged more than a mile along Greenmanville Avenue to Historic Downtown Mystic, Connecticut.
This vibrant sculpture sits outside the ever popular S&P Oyster Restaurant that’s set on the scenic Mystic riverfront.
The route I jogged into downtown Mystic is full of botanical delights.
Saturday, October 30, 2021
Each section of Montclair — it’s a city with four different downtowns — is blessed with abundance green spaces.
In Upper Montclair, I wandered through a bucolic landscape at Yantacaw Brook Park where it’s easy to sit mindfully on one of the many benches just staring at the clouds and their reflections in the placid water.
In Montclair Center, the grounds of the bucolic Van Vleck House and Gardens are networked with shaded paths that course through dense woodlands. Well-placed benches beckon visitors to sit and stay awhile.
Monday, October 25, 2021
The city of Montclair, New Jersey, is divided into several sections that are easily accessible by New Jersey Transit trains. But no matter where I wandered, I found Montclair, I found a delightful mix of art, cafes and nature-based venues. For example, in Montclair Center, creative outdoor sculptures, both figurative and avant-garde, dot the expansive lawns at the Montclair Art Museum.
In Upper Montclair, I followed a sign for the Mews and wandered down an ivy-coated, brick alley that ends at an atmospheric courtyard. There I discovered a Mediterranean Turkish restaurant and a contemporary art gallery.
Friday, October 15, 2021
You never know what you’ll find at the Catherine Konner Sculpture Park when roaming about the lush grounds that are part of the Rockland Center for the Arts.
Barely two miles from downtown Nyack, New York, the grassy lawns and paths at this sculpture park are dotted with some curious works of art that are worth examining.
Saturday, October 9, 2021
Tuesday, September 28, 2021
Sunday, September 19, 2021
I spent the past week in Uptown Kingston, New York (in the Hudson River Valley) where there are abundant vibrant murals, like this one by Lindsey Wolkowicz with Dillon Paul. “Lifted” depicts women and girls as voices of change.
On Crown Street, this mural, when seen straight on, is a large-scale playing card painted by Nils Westergard as a celebration of a friend through the good times and the bad.
Artist Samantha French and Aaron Hauck painted this evocataive mural “Late Summer Kill Swim” that references typical summers enjoying local swimming holes along the Hudson Valley. The word “kill” is a Dutch word for creeks or springs.
“Vignettes of Home,” a mural by Kingston-based painter Jane Bloodgood-Abrams, opens three windows into the evocative landscapes of the Hudson Valley that’s long served as inspiration to the area’s artists.
Sunday, September 12, 2021
It’s so easy to hop on Metro North from Manhattan and quickly escape to a stellar scenic landscape in Irvington, one of the peaceful villages fronting the Hudson River. This is Matthiessen Park, a bucolic public park with numerous distanced picnic tables and benches where you could sit for hours reading a book or working on your laptop.
The 26-some-mile Old Croton Aqueduct Trail that meanders from the Bronx up through the river villages of the Hudson Valley (including Irvington) is a leafy gem with its signature stone cylindrical ventilator shafts peppering the route. I’ve walked numerous portions of this trail.
Sunday, August 29, 2021
The other night in NYC was such a wonderful experience: My short comedy, “Such A Deal” that I co-wrote with director Dionna McMillian @dionnafilm, screened at the Chain Film Festival @chainfilmfestival. We had a great audience in the “NYC Films” block - high energy and super enthusiastic! The Talkback was fab, with managing director, Rick Hamilton @therickhamilton asking very thoughtful, engaging and insightful questions. I couldn’t have had a better experience. Afterward, many audience members including fellow filmmakers told me how much they enjoyed the film, saying things like: “creative, fun and beautifully shot; a home run,”“wonderful and whimsical,“ “this film was delightful from start to finish.” I feel so honored that our film was chosen to be a part of this stellar film festival.
✍️ Story by: @jcreaturetravel
🎬 Written by: @jcreaturetravel/@dionnafilm
Directed by: @dionnafilm
Thursday, August 26, 2021
Glamping sounds like it’s all about over-the-top luxury for couples while sleeping under the stars. But the French brand, Huttopia, opened a resort in Southern Maine that’s all about good old-fashioned fun in the woodlands for kids and adults while also giving them a respect and love of nature. This is my latest article for Forbes Life on Huttopia Southern Maine.
Sunday, August 22, 2021
Sitting in New York Harbor, Governors Island is just a short ferry ride from the Manhattan shoreline yet it feels worlds apart.
And, of course, it’s blanketed with foliage to keep me entranced.
Strolling on the network of flower-laden paths that wend through the Hammock Grove on Governors Island is sheer delight.