Posts Tagged ‘gardens’

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

local and lovely — farmington kitchen & garden tour

The 13th Annual Farm­ing­ton Kitchens and Gar­dens Tour hosted by the Friends of the Farm­ing­ton Library was held Sat­ur­day at six pri­vate homes and seven pub­lic gar­dens and muse­ums. The old­est home dates back to 1659 and most were in the Vil­lage, as we refer to the cen­tral, old­est part of Farm­ing­ton CT.
An incred­i­ble vari­ety of both kitchens and gar­dens, from mod­ern to stately to eclec­tic pro­vided a draw for many despite the early rain.

I can't tell you much about the event other than my lit­tle cor­ner of it. We were on the tour for the first time. Imag­ine hoards of gar­den lovers drop­ping in to see your out­door spaces, and then check­ing out your kitchen too. I'm a designer, and I was stressed out ahead of this event!  But, as always, I have a team I can rely on to make things happen!

First, the delight­ful and fun Cyn­thia Dodd from Plantscapes arrived to design and exe­cute stage 1 of "The Plan". For me, hir­ing a designer for the first time was a novel expe­ri­ence. As we dis­cussed choices, I made a con­certed effort not to ask for changes that would com­pro­mise the design — even when I could not visu­al­ize the fin­ished project. I will admit I did hem-and-haw about the foun­tain color, but we laughed through the whole thing and we even­tu­ally com­pro­mised on a color that suits us both. Hav­ing some­one else dress up my home was a won­der­ful expe­ri­ence! I can't imag­ine why every­one doesn't hire a designer!

Some peeks at the garden:

the new fountain

the new foun­tain in the foun­da­tion gar­den — this bed was com­pletely renovated

one of the planters on the front porch

one of the planters on the front porch

love this green planter!

love this green planter!

more greenery beside the front door

more green­ery beside the front door

some new gems in front of the studio

some new gems in front of the studio

the kitchen garden - I can't handle more than 3 tomato plants!

the kitchen gar­den — I can't han­dle more than 3 tomato plants!

these ligularia will spread in the shade behind the studio

these ligu­laria will spread in the shade behind the studio

more new perennials behind the house

more new peren­ni­als behind the house

new wall planters beside the kitchen doors

new wall planters beside the kitchen doors

new planters complement my panton chairs on the back patio

new planters com­ple­ment my pan­ton chairs on the back patio

Stage 2 of the new gar­dens will bring even more color and energy to our land­scape. And maybe in 3 or 5 years, as the newest plants mature and fill in, we'll be on the tour again.

To add some flo­ral zing to my kitchen, I called on the über-talented Robin Weir of Haworth's Florists. She is amaz­ing! I show up with a vague con­cept ("give me funky"), and a fab­ric sam­ple, she deliv­ers orig­i­nal, ener­getic and all-around fab­u­lous arrange­ments. Here are the three she designed for my kitchen:

in a corner behind my kitchen table, I set this on a chair atop a table for height

in a cor­ner behind my kitchen table, I set this on a chair atop a table for height

on the island, this arrangement garnered many compliments

on the island, this arrange­ment gar­nered many compliments

detail from the arrangement on the kitchen table

detail from the arrange­ment on the kitchen table

A few details from my kitchen — I'm a lousy pho­tog­ra­pher, so can only show snippets!

new pillows on my thomas o'brien (swoon) thompson chairs

new pil­lows on my thomas o'brien (swoon) thomp­son chairs

newly reupholstered side chairs

newly reuphol­stered side chairs

my crow foot table in the seating area

my crow foot table in the seat­ing area

 

tibetan chest from kips bay quickly accessorized from around the house!

tibetan chest from kips bay quickly albeit scant­ily acces­sorized from around the house!

I under­stand from the orga­niz­ers the Farm­ing­ton Kitchen & Gar­den Tour was a suc­cess and hope sig­nif­i­cant funds were raised for the libraries in town. Many thanks to the vol­un­teers who looked after my home!

Tags: , , , , ,

4
Comments

Thursday, April 28, 2011

la dolce vita — palazzo murat

There are many joys to be found in trav­el­ing, espe­cially to a place as filled with his­tory and beauty as Italy. One of those must surely be the shoulder-season room upgrade! LOL — but seri­ously, what's more fun than find­ing out the gor­geous room you booked has mor­phed into a 2-bedroom, 2-bathroom suite com­plete with an enor­mous liv­ing room and a kitchen?

I chose the Palazzo Murat in Posi­tano after much angst and research. Tri­pad­vi­sor (my go-to source for hotel ideas) rated it #1 on the Amalfi Coast. Could it really be bet­ter than my first choice, Le Sirenuse, a styl­ish gem? The Conde Nast Gold List is sel­dom wrong, but as it turned out — no chil­dren allowed at Le Sirenuse. My only real reser­va­tion about Palazzo Murat was the rooms are not directly fac­ing the sea. But so many great fac­tors made up for that — the cen­tral loca­tion, the quiet ambiance, the amaz­ing gar­dens and easy access to the main beach.

Where I thought we'd be:

palazzo murat

palazzo murat

Where we wal­lowed in space and charm­ing (if not high style) décor:

palazzo murat room 43 living area

palazzo murat room 43 liv­ing area

palazzo murat - room 43 smaller bedroom

palazzo murat — room 43 smaller bedroom

palazzo murat room 43 kitchen

palazzo murat room 43 kitchen

palazzo murat room 43 small bathroom

palazzo murat room 43 small bathroom

With 14 foot plas­ter ceil­ings and elab­o­rate old mold­ings, this room is truly a gem — bet­ter than my pic­tures can show!

palazzo murat room 43 large bedroom

palazzo murat room 43 large bedroom

palazzo murat room 43 large bedroom

palazzo murat room 43 large bedroom

palazzo murat room 43 large bathroom

palazzo murat room 43 large bathroom

This bath­tub is 5 feet in diam­e­ter and nearly 3 feet deep!

palazzo murat room 43 large bathroom

palazzo murat room 43 large bathroom

palazzo murat room 43 view from the sofa

palazzo murat room 43 view from the sofa

And the out­door views — not too shabby…

palazzo murat room 43 view from the terrace, looking left

palazzo murat room 43 view from the ter­race, look­ing left

palazzo murat room 43 view from the terrace, looking right, with breakfast area below

palazzo murat room 43 view from the ter­race, look­ing right, with break­fast area below

The palazzo is jus­ti­fi­ably famous for its gar­dens. Al Palazzo Ris­torante sits within the gar­dens — best ser­vice and ambiance we expe­ri­ences in Italy, bar none. The food was lovely as well!

palazzo murat gardens

palazzo murat gardens

palazzo murat gardens

palazzo murat gardens

palazzo murat gardens

palazzo murat gardens

I covet these planters! There were dozens, all different.

palazzo murat gardens

palazzo murat gardens

palazzo murat gardens

palazzo murat gardens

palazzo murat gardens

palazzo murat gardens

And finally, a look at the inte­rior pub­lic spaces.  The lobby extends all along the gar­dens, with mul­ti­ple rooms to dine, relax, play chess or sim­ply be.

palazzo murat public spaces

palazzo murat pub­lic spaces

palazzo murat public spaces

palazzo murat pub­lic spaces

The Palazzo Murat is located three min­utes walk below the main road, which elim­i­nates road noise issues. It is two min­utes walk above the main beach via delight­ful stairs and alley­ways full of shops. This elim­i­nates noise from the beach and its adja­cent restau­rants.  Even the church ceases ring­ing its bells from 7pm to late morn­ing. Quiet com­fort is the byword at the Palazzo.

Go to Posi­tano (off sea­son) and stay at the Palazzo Murat. It is a gem!

Tags: , , , ,

2
Comments