Travel

10 Things To Do In NYC During The Holidays

Ahhh December in NYC!  It’s one of my absolute favorite months, especially in NYC.  The entire city feels so festive and magical!  I’m excited to be heading back in 2 days and celebrating my birthday with my nearest and dearest friends.  I wanted to share 10 things I always love doing during the holidays in the city! 10 Things To Do In NYC During The Holidays  Ice skate at Rockefeller CenterThere are tons of places to ice skate in the city, but this is definitely the most iconic.  The tree, the huge rink, and 5th Avenue decorated to the nines – ahhh so fun! Enjoy sweet treats at LadureeHead to Soho and grab a spot inside the gorgeous Laduree cafe for an afternoon of sweet treats! Get hot cocoa at The StandardThe Standard Meatpacking location also has a great little ice skating rink and they always put out the most festive decorations.  Enjoy brunch, lunch, dinner or cocktails there – or just grab a hot cocoa by the fire! Eat a decadent dinner at The Polo BarMake reservations well in advance to eat at the iconic Polo Bar restaurant.  The food is out of this world and the ambiance is so festive and chic.  Leather booths, velvet, plaid, and dark, moody lighting make this a truly holiday worthy spot. Grab brunch at Buvette and stroll around the West VillageMy go-to weekend brunch spot is Buvette.  It’s a charming French cafe nestled right in the heart of the West Village (my old neighborhood!)  After you enjoy a mouth watering croque monsieur – wander through the cobblestone streets of West Village and admire all of the townhouses. Shop along Fifth and Madison Avenue and admire the window displaysSpend the day uptown and pop into Bergdorfs, Tiffanys, Saks, Barneys and more splurge worthy shops!  The window displays are incredible! Sip on tea at The PlazaBook a table at The Plaza hotel uptown for tea and treats.  The space is gorgeous and so special for a girls afternoon! Listen to jazz at The Carlyle then have cocktails by the fire at The LowellThese two stunning hotels are right around the corner from each other and such cozy enclaves during the winter.  The Carlyle has amazing live music, and the Lowell bar – is so intimate – plus the cocktails are amazing! Grab Levain cookies and walk through Central ParkOk if you haven’t tried Levain cookies – then you are missing out on LIFE!  These cookies are insane – so thick, so gooey and famous for a reason.  Grab an assortment and wander through Central Park – you can thank me later! Stroll through Washington Square Park with a matcha from Bluestone Lane…And grab a pretzel too while you’re at it!  This is one of my favorite parks in the city – and it’s so peaceful in the middle of the day. Be sure to download my Travel App for free in the App Store or Google Play for ALL of my favorite restaurants, shops, bar, and sights in New York City – plus get tons of outfit ideas.  Just search “With Love From Kat” If you love it – please leave me a review in the App Store! XO
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Italy Guide: Capri, Positano and Venice

I’m so excited to share my Italy trip with you today :) My trip was the perfect way to end summer.  Capri, Positano, and Venice all have a special place in my heart and I feel so lucky that I got to go with my girlfriend from NYC! My favorite places in Capri, Positano and Venice are all live on my Travel App!If you didn’t already know, I built a Travel App 4 years ago for you – my readers!  I wanted you to be able to see and enjoy my favorite shops, restaurants, bars, and sights in 20+ cities around the world.  It’s basically my little black book and I am constantly updating it.  It is FREE to download – and all you have to do is just search WITH LOVE FROM KAT in the App store or Google Play. What I wore in Italy and how I packed for Italy may surprise you…  I didn’t want to check a bag, so I somehow squeezed a weeks worth of outfits (one for day, and one for night) into a tiny Tumi carry on!  I’m a textbook over packer so this was HUGE for me lol.  My secret packing tip is that I rolled all of my clothes and stuffed bags within bags, and things like underwear in the pockets of those bags!  I brought my favorite Longchamp soft duffle as an extra bag – and put anything I bought in that to take home!  All of my outfit details are linked below. If I had to choose a favorite city that we visited, it would be Capri.It is truly magical and I hope to get married there someday!  A girl can dream!  Be sure to check out my Italy Travel Vlog which documents the entire trip!
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Best Workouts in NYC and LA

I’ve tried just about every type of workout and workout class under the sun and wanted to share a roundup of my favorites here with you!  Whether you’re visiting or live in NYC or LA, these are the workouts that cannot be missed.  Read through to see what this week’s giveaway is…it’s a big one! The best workouts in NYC and LA…Love Yoga Venice (LA)This boutique yoga studio is so unassuming and laid back.  There’s no intense check in area (the yoga instructor teaching the class just casually checks you in), and the space is small and intimate.  The style of flow focuses on breath work and deep stretching so I always leave feeling restored, balanced, and 3 inches taller.  My favorite teachers are Miki and Hannah. Box Union (LA)It is essentially the Soul Cycle of boxing.  The room is dark and sexy, the music is amazing, and the class is so high energy/peppy it goes by in the blink of an eye.  If I am ever in a rut – I know I can go here, sweat it out, shake up any bad vibes I was feeling and walk out of the class totally high on endorphins.  Make sure to book a class with Deja – she books up fast but is definitely the best teacher there!!! Hot 8 Yoga (LA)This is one of my favorite heated Bikram yoga classes.  The sculpt class is insane and will literally sculpt your bod within a few sessions… Charlotte McKinney always goes to the class I go to at the Santa Monica location – talk about bod goals!  Take a class with Leigh he’s fabulous. Hike Runyon Canyon or Solstice Canyon (LA)Hiking is one of my favorite outdoor activities in LA – and it’s free!  Head to Runyon Canyon in West Hollywood and then to a yummy brunch right after, or drive along PCH to Malibu and spend the day at Solstice Canyon followed by a smoothie at Sun Life at the Malibu Country Mart. Love For Pilates or Studio MDR (LA)Love For Pilates isn’t related to Love Yoga but they both have a low key vibe.  Also, Love For Pilates is a very small studio (I go to the one in Santa Monica) that focuses on slow movements that really get your muscles fired up and toned.  Honestly, I appreciate that the classes are always less than 10 people and that the teacher takes the time to correct your posture and form.   I included Studio MDR on here because so many of my girlfriends love it. Furthermore, I have done it several times and while I did like it – I found that it was a little too intense for my liking and the teachers didn’t pay close enough attention to my form so I often came home with a sore neck or back from doing the movements incorrectly.  That being said, the music is great, you really feel the burn and it’s a fun/trendy studio workout class. Gotham gym (NYC)I used to do private boxing with Kareem 3 times a week in their Meatpacking/West Village location and my abs were rock solid at one point LOL!  Kareem is amazing and everyone there was so friendly.  Don’t be surprised when you see Gigi and Bella Hadid…or Ashley Olsen working out there – it’s a celebrity hangout! Flybarre (NYC)I went to the Flatiron location once or twice a week when I lived in the city.  The studio is spacious and the classes produce results – I always noticed a difference after just a few sessions! Y7 Yoga (NYC)This is a heated, hip hop yoga class.  They actually just opened a location in LA and I have yet to go!  The music is always incredible and you lose yourself in the hour you’re in the room.  I love that it combines intensity and relaxation throughout the class and that you can always go at your own pace. Running, tennis, Tone It Up or BBG on the West Side Highway (NYC)I lived right near the West Side Highway/Hudson Park in the West Village and used to love running along it and then I would do the Kayla Itisines BBG Sweat app in one of the side grassy areas. Jamie Ehrlich Pilates and FLEX Studios Pilates (NYC)Jamie was my private pilates teacher in the West Village and has the cutest studio with two reformers.  It doesn’t get more intimate/boutique than this little haven!  I love her style and philosophy and she really makes the most of your 50 minute session.  If you’re in Soho – head to FLEX Studio’s Noho location and take one of their pilates classes.  You won’t be able to walk after but it will be worth it!!!! I also wanted to answer a few frequently asked questions I get around the topic of working out in general.   Q: Do you workout? A: Yes I do workout even though I sometimes loathe it/don’t feel like it haha!  I workout for my mental health, to stay physically healthy/toned, and for my digestion (did you know working out improves the bacteria in your gut?)   Q: What types of workouts do you do?  A: I have tried sooooo many and go in waves of certain workouts I’m really into depending on my mood.  At the moment, I am doing less intense workouts and opting for a personal trainer 2 times a week to do circuit training with me (stuff like kettle bell swings, planks, TRX, and lunges), yoga once a week, and I hike on the weekends – plus I walk Charlie multiple times a day.  Having a personal trainer is worth the $ – they know what they’re doing, monitor your form, and hold you accountable. Q: Why have you decided to work out less? A: Working out is obviously amazing for you – however certain workouts can raise your cortisol/stress levels.  I had a blood test done a while ago, and my cortisol levels were quite high so I aim for workouts that don’t get too intense so I can keep my cortisol. And in turn hormones more balanced.  Plus, I realized I didn’t really enjoy super intense workouts and needed to let my body recover from the workouts I was doing so that I could build muscle.  Recovery is so crucial!  If you’re unsure of what workout is right for you… I highly recommend taking an Ayurveda test to find out what the best workout for your body type is.  Ayurveda has been around for more than 3,000 years and is extremely helpful in navigating your mind, body, health connection.  FYI I’m currently reading the Idiot’s Guide to Ayurveda written by my friend Sahara Rose in case you’re more interested in learning about it! This week’s giveaway is $500 worth of workout clothes, makeup, sunscreen, accessories and more in the cutest lucite gym bag.  To enter, leave me a comment below telling me what your favorite type of workout and/or workout class is, Subscribe to my Youtube and newsletter, Follow me on Instagram and like my last 3 photos.  Winner will emailed on Friday!  Good luck! SaveSave SaveSave SaveSave SaveSave SaveSave
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10 Dreamy Summer Travel Destinations

Itching for a summer trip?!  I’ve got you covered ;)  I’m sharing my 10 favorite summer travel destinations below!  These are places that are fun to go with just about anyone: your family, a girlfriend, a group of friends, or a significant other!  And almost all of them are on my Travel App which you can downloaded for free in the App Store or Google Play by searching “With Love From Kat.”  Within my Travel App, I share the best spots in each city to eat, play, stay, shop, and relax, plus I show you outfit recommendations for each.  Where have you been dying to go?!  Do tell!  Nantucket I grew up going to Nantucket and Cape Cod every summer.  My mom’s family lives out there and we would spend the entire summer – away from the Arizona heat – at my grandmother’s house.  You feel like you’ve transported into an idyllic 1950s town with cobblestone streets, white picket fences, hydrangeas, and charming store fronts!  Spend the afternoons biking around town and enjoying a picnic at the beach, then the evenings catching the sunset at Galley and Cru. St. Barths I’ve been dying to go back to St. Barths ever since Talun and I went 3 years ago.  It’s relatively easy to get to from NYC and you’ll have an absolute blast.  Spend your afternoons shopping in town and having lunch at Nikki beach, then your evenings eating at Bonita and dancing all night at Le Ti!  Rent a mini cooper or scooter to get around the island – and stay at Cheval Blanc… a total dream. Venice Beach I couldn’t leave off my new hometown!  Venice is the ultimate California vacation destination.  Rent an airbnb or stay at Shutters on the Beach and ride bikes along the boardwalk, walk along Abbot Kinney, enjoy the Venice Canals Historic District and dine at yummy places like Butchers Daughter, Great White, or Rose Cafe. Sicily I went to two islands in Sicily years ago and fell in love with both.  Taormina is one of the most picturesque places I’ve ever seen (stay at the Belmond hotel – 100% worth it) and then take a high speed ferry to a tiny island called Panarea and stay at Hotel Raya where Grace Kelly once stayed.  Panarea is understated chic – forget the glitz and glam and people trying too hard – this is a stunning, relaxed, island where you can truly unwind. Paris Ahhh Paris in the summer.  Such a special time!  Stroll through the Marais, eat wine and cheese along the Seine, wander through off the beaten path museums (that I include in my app so go download it!), and pick up specialty items at vintage stories along the way. The Hamptons Rent a car and drive to Southampton or Montauk for a weekend getaway from the city.  I love renting an airbnb or staying at Gurney’s Montauk.  All of my fave spots are on my app! Amalfi Coast Capri and Positano are even more magical in person.  Pick up handmade sandals in Capri, enjoy the best pizza and pasta at iconic Chez Black in Positano, take in the incredible ocean views from Villa Treville, sit in Capri’s town square with an aperol spritz in hand people watching from Quisisana, and unwind at one of the best beach clubs in the world; La Fontelina.  Oh, and don’t forget to have dinner at Mamma Mia! Provence Take a hot air balloon ride over Provence where you can see the entire countryside.  Get lost in sunflower and lavender fields.  Enjoy long, leisurely lunches of wine, cheese, delicious baguettes and fresh fruit.  Pick up baskets and antiques to take home with you! St. Tropez Head straight to Le Club 55 for a champagne filled lunch followed by laying out at the beach.  Visit the iconic Chanel boutique which is situated in an old mansion.  Take in the stunning scenery and charm of the town! Ibiza The turquoise blue water in Ibiza is mesmerizing.  There are so many areas to explore – you can have a more chill countryside experience in the Northern part or a more lively experience in the Southern part.  Old Town is full of shops and restaurants that stay open all night – you’ll never want to leave!  Take a boat ride to the island Formentera for beautiful beaches, day clubs, and even more charming restaurants and shops.  Safety note – there is a lot of crime in Ibiza.  Gypsies prey on tourists and are PROS at pickpocketing.  Never leave your bag open (I don’t recommend bringing a bucket bag!) and this goes without saying but always watch your drink being poured at a bar/never accept a drink from a stranger.   SaveSave SaveSave SaveSave
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