Monday, August 31, 2015

Summer Goodbye with Flutes and Floats

Unless you are an absolute ski bunny, you probably do not enjoy saying goodbye to summer, or it does not top your list of "favorite things to do." Saying goodbye to warm weather, long days, and relaxation is always hard each time the calendar begins to approach Labor Day.

I celebrated the end of summer and the last warm days with a fun party that is easy to replicate, fun, and the perfect way to say au revoir to #endlesssummer. A "Flutes and Floats" party fits the bill with pool fun and glasses of bubbly.

Pool floats have become all the rage the past few summers with the fun designs filling my Instagram feed. We got a variety of floats from Fun Boy, the brand that really started the "float life" revolution with that infamous white swam. The floats became the central idea for a party and what pairs better with sun, pool, and float than a little champagne? Hence the theme "Flutes and Floats" was born.

Preparation was beyond easy requiring the cleansing of some champagne flutes and filling up a few ice buckets to keep everything chilled. The rest was pure fun! We hosted as an early evening affair, so we paired light bites and cheese plates with the champagne and rosé cocktails.

Flutes and Floats made saying goodbye to summer a little bit easier, and I think it will become an annual tradition! How are you celebrating the end of the summer season?

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Visiting Villefranche-sur-Mer

Located just around the bend from Nice, situated next to iconic towns such as Saint Jean Cap Ferrat, is the beautiful seaside town of Villefranch-Sur-Mer in the heart of the French Riviera. August is the high season for taking a "holiday" as the Europeans call it, and with my Instagram feed filled with pictures of bloggers and jet-setters alike frolicking around the South of France, I could not help but reminisce about my recent visit in May.

Villfranche is by far one of my favorite towns on the Riviera. If you are staying in a central area such as  Nice, Villefranche is only about a 3 minute train ride! It is one stop from Nice-Riquier train station. Crossing under the hill which takes approximately 2 minutes seems to transform you back in time as you enter a sleepy, seaside village.

The bay of Villefranche is filled with fishing boats and yachts alike, with the crowds enjoying the beach, an aperitif, or people watching. There is one beach in Villefranche and it is public. I recommend getting there early during the high season as the beach can fill up quickly so you will want to get there to stake out some prime real estate. The water is calmer than the neighboring Plage de Nice as it is tucked into a bay, and thus the waves are smaller. There is a snack stand that serves food and beverages (alcohol included) should you feel the need to indulge while catching some Mediterranean rays.

If the beach is not for you, the old town of Villefranche, while small, is simply beautiful. Strolling the streets and small shops is a great way to pass the afternoon. I also recommend making your way to the top of the citadel de Villefranche as the views are simply amazing as you hover over the beach and entire bay. It is a great way to enjoy the azur blue waters for which the South of France is known.

Looking for a great way to end a relaxing day on the beach? I recommend visiting Beluga, situated right along the water, for an enjoyable afternoon cocktail and snack. The venue features plush outdoor seating to continue to enjoy the picturesque views.

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