Archive for the ‘Smitten Travels’ Category

smitten travels: cayucos

cayucos-airbnb-sarahshermansamuelA few weeks back Rupe and I headed up the coast to meet up with some friends in the darling little beach town of Cayucos. It is situated just north of Morro Bay, not far from San Luis Obispo and about halfway between LA and San Francisco (which is where our friends were coming down from). We filled the weekend with walks on the beach, wandering around the town, antiquing, good food, and lots of laughs (you know, all the important things in life. :)).

california-road-tripcayucos-beach-2-sarahshermansamuelcayucos-airbnb2-sarahshermansamuelWe found this special Airbnb rental that felt part Swiss Family Robinson, part Wes Anderson film set (the bedroom is pictured in the first image). The nautical themed 2 and 1/2 story house (for real there was a half floor with about 4 foot high ceilings, between the top and bottom floors, perfect for kids to crawl into and with enough beds to sleep the Duggar family (ok not quite)) was just a few blocks from the beach and had this lovely back patio where we spent Saturday night, grilling, dining al fresco, and chatting around the fire.

cayucos-beach-sarahshermansamuelcalifornia-road-trip2morro-bayWe also took some side trips to towns like Morro Bay, (photo above) where we had a delicious breakfast at Dorn’s and San Luis Obispo, where we dined at Taste and Big Sky Cafe, as well as stopped by the Madonna Inn for a little color therapy in all shades of pink (photo from the dining room 1 image up on the right). I have yet to stay the night there but the secret kitsch loving side of me is dying to test out one of their ridiculous(-ly awesome) themed rooms, each on is different!

Our favorite foodie stop in Cayucos was Ruddell’s for the smoked fish tacos (which I actually couldn’t eat being pregnant and all, but I can attest that the smoked chicken taco’s were delicious :).

Images by me (iphone) more on instagram (I’m @sarahshermansamuel).

To see more of our travels, check here.

from the weekend: los alamos

los alamos // alamo motel // sarah sherman samuelMy parents are visiting from Michigan this week so we took them up to a darling little tiny town Los Alamos. It is about two and half hours north of LA which makes for a great weekend getaway and you know I like me some weekend trips. We stayed in The Alamo Motel which is the newest addition to the Shelter Social Club roster. It is in the process of getting renovated and we were lucky enough to snag one of the new rooms. If you plan on going sometime soon, it is a good idea to request one of the renovated spaces as there are still only a few (and completely adorable).

A few of our favorite spots from the weekend were…

To Eat:
Full of Life Flatbread 
Bob’s Well Bread Bakery

To Drink:
Muni Wine Tasting Room (right at the hotel)
Babi’s Beer Emporium

To See:
Oceano Dunes (about 45 mins north)
Ostrichland (feed some ostrich and emus)
Antique Shops galore

Images by me via iPhone & instagram (I’m @sarahshermansamuel)

from the weekend: malibu

end of summer // malibu // smitten studiomalibu airbnb // smitten studioPool time, book reading, a beautiful wedding, beach days, and this peaceful mountain top rental property made for a pretty wonderful weekend in Malibu for this mama to be. I found the cabin on Airbnb which came complete with a private pool and gorgeous mountain views. Even though we were less than an hour from home, we could have been a million miles away, waking up to the sound of a distant rooster crow and cows mooing! I love living in the city but I also crave these quiet escapes.

morning view // malibu airbnb // smitten studioOur morning view of the mist coming up from the ocean (above) and the walk down to my favorite beach, El Matador, which was just a short drive down the mountain.

el matador state beach // smitten studiobackyard wedding // malibuI have never been to a more stunning backyard wedding. Candles floated in the pool, hung from the trees in lanterns, and were nestled all around the garden. The interior shot was of the bride and groom’s house, I just couldn’t NOT take a photo. :)

el matador state beach // smitten studioel matador state beach // smitten studioWe ended the weekend with a day at El Matador and at 21 weeks pregnant the walk back up to the car was definitely a little more difficult than I remember! (still worth it though).

Places we enjoyed:
Our Airbnb Rental
Nobu (best seaside restaurant)
The Malibu Cafe (tucked back in the mountains about 6 mins from our rental)
El Matador State Beach
Malibu Wines (we didn’t go this trip but great for wine tasting)
Malibu Country Mart (shopping and star sighting if you are into that ;)

Images by me via iPhone/instagram. (I’m @sarahshermansamuel)

smitten travels: 5 night road trip – southwest

perfect 5 night road trip from LA // smitten studioI recently planned a 5 night road trip for Rupert and my anniversary and it ended up being one of our all time favorite vacations, I can not recommend this route enough. We anchored the journey around a visit to Lake Powell (pictured above) but each leg of the trip had something special to see/do/experience.

perfect 5 night road trip from LA // smitten studioperfect 5 night road trip from LA // smitten studioperfect 5 night road trip from LA // smitten studioThe best part about a road trip is the total freedom of just jumping in the car and going! We had the destinations in mind but we were also able to play it by ear. If you are in or around the LA area and looking for an excursion out of the ordinary, this is it!

Get all the details of our route and loads more photos after the jump…

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from the weekend: anniversary road trip

antelope canyon // smitten studioLast week Rupe and I celebrated our 5 year wedding anniversary. If you remember from last year, we take turns planning a trip for the occasion and this year was my turn.

Growing up my family did a lot of traveling around the states and I love that I get to show my English husband all the favorite spots that I can remember from when I was just a young one. One of those favorite spots was Lake Powell in Utah, and that was my main jumping off point for planning a 5 night road-trip. I’ll put together a full post on the route we took, the places we stayed and the things we did, but I wanted to share one of the most magical spots from our journey (pictured above), Antelope Canyon.

Image by me via iphone & instagram (I’m @sarahshermansamuel)

smitten travels: michigan

lake michigan - sarah sherman samuelThis time of year, around the cabin, is pretty stunning. We arrived at around 7pm to a glassy calm lake with a non-existent horizon. It created this otherworldly scene magnified by that fact that there was not another soul in site. We dumped our bags in the bedroom, grabbed the SUP and headed straight into a dream.

cabin in the spring // smitten studio swan - silver lake - michigan // smitten studioapple tree orchard // sarah sherman samuelWe also made a point to visit a few of my favorite Michigan spots in the spring. We spotted this gorgeous apple orchard, located around Shelby, on our way to Cherry Point Market, a frequent stop for us with the sweetest owner and the best cherry turnovers. Another must-see place if you are in the area is the Silver Lake Sand Dunes. It’s a little Dubai in Michigan (image below). We usually like to just jump around on the steep dunes but you can also do dune buggy rides or rent ATVs to scoot around on the huge sandy hills.

silver lake dunes - michigan // smitten studiolake michigan beach // smitten studiosilver lake dunes - michigan // smitten studiodesert in MI // smitten studiosup michigan // smitten studioThe best part about visiting Michigan is with all the (usually quite abrupt) weather changes, each trip is completely different and watching the sky over the lake from the cabin is always a treat. I find people who haven’t been to Michigan always underestimate how beautiful it can be. Would you guys be interested in a more in depth guide to all my favorite spots?

Images by sarah sherman samuel (iphone)

from the weekend: beach picnics & home projects

beach picnic // a sunny afternoon // malibuI had a friend visiting this weekend so I took Friday off to head up the coast and enjoy a beach day at one of the prettiest stretches or shoreline LA has to offer, El Matador State Beach. We grabbed a blanket, books, and my basket. Packed it up with lunch and we were set for a full day of sunshine, seal watching, and tide pool searching. It doesn’t get much better than that!

Once back at the homestead, Rupe and I finished the built-ins (a peek here), and the patio benches (a glimpse here) and again our backs are broken this Monday morning. :)

Hope you had a lovely weekend. x

Image by me (with some help from @annezuelke :)) via instagram (I’m @sarahshermansamuel)

smitten travels: catalina island

catalina island, descanso beach // smitten studiocatalina island // smitten studioI’m back with a bit more from our trip to Catalina Island. A few highlights were…

That pretty little hideaway in the first photo, called Descanso Beach. There’s a beach club there that you can hang on the beach without paying (or rent beach chairs or a cabana if you want the full experience), and its also where we rented kayaks out for a couple hours. Our kayak trip was easily the best part of the trip, we rowed past seals and dolphins and loved just drifting around on the crystal clear water. We took a two person kayak because Rupe is a zealous rower and it means I get to take breaks and float along for the ride. :) The woman that worked at the rental desk told us where we could kayak out to see leopard sharks in the shallow waters just past Frog Rock (she assured us that they were harmless so I was in). We thought it would be pretty cool but had no idea how incredible it was when we finally happened on them and suddenly there were literally about 100 sharks swimming around our boat!

catalina-island-casinocatalina island // smitten studiocatalina island // smitten studiocatalina island // smitten studiocatalina island // smitten studiocatalina island // smitten studioWalking around the old Casino, ((top photo in this set) you can take tours of the inside but we didn’t get a chance to. It’s on my list for next time), renting golf carts and touring around to the two high points above the city (middle image & last image), playing mini-golf, and hanging out on the docks on a warm night well past our bedtime were the rest of the high points.

You guys gave me some incredible tips on Instagram before we went and we had a blast checking some things off the list. Next time I want to see the buffalo!

iPhone images by me (more on instagram @sarahshermansamuel)

smitten travels: miami beach

miami beach, south beach // smitten studiosouth beach, art deco // smitten studiohill climb // smitten studiosunset over miami // smitten studioI’m back with more from our recent trip to Miami! Visiting South Beach was a big ole trip down memory lane. Rupe and I checked out our old apartments, stopped by the place where we first met and made sure to drop in at all of our favorite spots which I’ll be sharing below.

Some things have changed since the last time I was there, like the Wynwood Art District and the city skyline with how the buildings seemed to have multiplied (photo just above taken of Downtown from our room at the Mondrian). While, other things have remained the same, like sometime around 6pm being my favorite time to go to the beach (top photo taken then, from the 5th street lifeguard tower).

miami beach south beach // smitten studiosoho house, miami // smitten studioLincoln Road is still one of the best spots to do some serious people watching (and shopping and eating, but really the people watching is so good), and the Soho House is the perfect refuge from the usual South Beach chaos (image above).

the atlantic // smitten studioleaves-miamithe raleigh, miami // smitten studioThe Raleigh is one of my favorite hotels in South Beach with its’ post card perfect (or rather, instagram worthy) art deco style and small details that make the designer in me swoon (even their website is awesome). We also had Rupert’s 40th birthday “day after the celebration brunch” at their Restaurant Michael Schwartz (the bar pictured above).

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