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IMG_0435Cutting edge clothing store ALCHEMIST at 11 11 Lincoln Road, Miami, Florida.

It has been like 12 years the last time I went down to Miami. Since then, a few things have definitely changed. If you still like to talk about Ocean Drive in Miami, Please, Talk to the hands. Because that is So over. Ocean drive and the crowd is there. So what?  Let People have fun. But that is Not my first interest when I Now talk about Miami. Why?  Because I saw and I was there for real interesting things. Not in the past. I was having a ” Design Moment” in Miami.

Miami is moving forward.

IMG_0301A Court Yard at MOCA, 770 NE 125th Street, North Miami

A small scaled Museum of Contemporary Art North Miami is located way out of the way from Miami Beach. When I was researching what I need to see in Miami, I assumed MOCA was in Design district but this is even little more out of the way from Design District. Sort of middle of nowhere but I love how handsome the building is. I was envy of space imagining us 3 living a modern life. A beautiful Court Yard, plenty of space to hang our favorite arts, parties with friends… It’s that cozy yet chick and modern. As soon as Atsuko has arrived from NY, we headed off to MOCA for little Art moment.

IMG_0303Yes. It’s a Paradise.

IMG_0327Outside of MOCA.

IMG_0312Current exhibition : Ragnar Kjartansson’s “Song” May 17-September 2.

A room size of about 400 square foot housing multiple screens showing the artists play different part of One song that is being played in physically different locations. Each screen and location plays each layer of components of the song but they complete each others as a whole in harmony. It’s an interesting concept. And the room is surprisingly relaxing and chilled. We were all sitting there on the floor for a while.  It was quite beautiful.

IMG_0309Atsuko and Gael.



IMG_0320Here in a different room. The artist’s 3 nieces sing a gentle folk song that is written by Kajartansson in Carnegie Museum of Art’s Hall of Sculpture. Those pretty faces singing in such angelic voice… I was having a ” Virgin Suicide”  and “Tavi” moment here. Bit spooky and quite beautiful.



IMG_0498Again, 11 11 Lincoln Road on Lincoln, Miami

Here’s the Quote from their site 1111Lincolnroad, “Envisioned by Wennett and Designed by Herzog & de Meuron, 11 11 Lincoln road represents the collaboration of renowned architects, landscape architects, artists and designers to create a unique shopping, dinning, residential and parking experience for Miami’s residents and visitors.”  You should really check out the site. It’s a beautiful thing.

IMG_0437Atsuko walking around bit.  Actually the building also reminds me of  Shanghai’s 1933.

IMG_0436Approaching the shop,  Alchemist on 5 th floor. The only store in the building off the ground floor.


IMG_0429Beautifully edited collection of Balenciaga, Rick Owen, Proenza Schouler…. And amazing jewelries!




IMG_0443A view from the second floor of 11 11 Lincoln. The multi colored glassed building is a cinema.

IMG_0484Now we are at JUVIA restaurant for Cocktails! A pent house restaurant right next to the building of 11 11 Lincoln.  The penthouse deck with a grand view to Miami beach. Ahhhh  It’s a real ideal Miami experience here. The breeze, people, design, relaxed vibe, even to the right volume of music like Atsuko says. All in A Style. Swanky and Smart. Just Perfect.

IMG_0465Sitting Bar. The beautiful planted jungle wall,what ever you will call is out of the world. Emi treated us with yummy cocktails!


IMG_0479How much I love those chairs!

IMG_0477Indoor dinning area.



IMG_0329Here we are now at Design district.  The Art installation called ” The Living room”. Then it used to be attached to low rise commercial building.

p104750-Miami-Living_Room_BuildingThis is photo taken by Ally at IgoUgo.com back in year 2004. See then it even had a curtain!



IMG_0339There are many little low rise commercial spaces in Design district. They are all sort of different architectural style from industrial to Art deco to this sort of to super Modern… all mixed in.  But Always with lots of plants and flowers.


IMG_0341Lots and lots of galleries and design shops.  Check out Miamidesigndistrict and DesignDistrictMag

IMG_0343Here there are couple cute boutiques and One of the Best Restaurant in Miami, Michael’s Genuine. And around the corner from here, there are shops of absolutely beautiful Martin Margiela and Marni.

IMG_0346Inside of Michael’s Genuine.  There’s cute little outdoor space and airy and simple indoor space with this boxed red lighting.  We are having Sunday evening dinner here!


IMG_0347Slowly caramelized Pork Belly sitting on top of a Kimchi bed!  Miami loves kimchi for the moment!  All ingredients are Organic and they are all well priced.  Super low key vibe with great hearty food. Thanks to Anthony Bourdain for the recommendation!

IMG_0356Savory was savory and good. but WOW! Dessert at Michael’s Genuine is Out of the World!  So delicious. Here 2 donuts with buttered Pop corn Ice cream and lemon zest and and and…!  It sounded bit strange to hear the buttered pop corn ice cream, but the chef had nailed the flavor in such nice way. They were amazing.

IMG_0403Beautiful Monday Morning, Atsuko and I are hitting Miami by foot leaving boys by the beach. Palms, Sun and Breeze. It’s really nice!


IMG_0402Checking out Hotel Delano for a cool shop we heard about.


IMG_0412Such an elegant bar at Delano. I love it.

IMG_0413A Wall by the shop, Base at Delano.

IMG_0418A must Check out Concept Store, Webster.

IMG_0417And here’s a good old Miami moment with an Art Deco building…

IMG_0388Our last night at W Miami. There are many great arts in W Miami. Damien Hirst, a few of Basquiat… Usually I associate W with “Trendy” and “Lively” but  W Miami one felt more chick and relaxed. Grown up.

IMG_0391Bar Restaurant, Dutch at W.

IMG_0389I like the shot of soft grey stripe running down the middle of the pillars. Without it, it would have been more of NYC.

IMG_0376Our swanky deck to the ocean.



It was more of an eye opening trip to me personally to learn about where Miami is heading to and was a really pleasant experience of Start of Modern Design in Miami. Something that just will stay in my skin for a long time. Not just pretty clothes. Not just another store.  Me sitting there at pent house of Juvia having one cocktail completely settled in me. The vibe and situation really inspired me heading into Summer research. A life style. But I really hope Miami will carry on and preserve their Art Deco heritage and turn it into the best form they can. I mean where in the world, can you find such a setting? All these deco buildings by the beach!

Hope you enjoyed Miami in My way and hope this gives you a different perspective about Miami.

(By the way $10 meal at Puerto Sagua was Puerto Sagua. It brought all back to me!)

LOvE  Design!

IMG_0057Gael’s Plum flash in a Plum Skin boat with Peony leaf Sail floating on organic Apple cider ocean and Blueberry Buoys. A “Dessert” Gael says.

Gael was a always good eater. When I started solid food along the breast feeding, Gael started rather falling a sleep on me and eat up the solid food. I used to tickle his ears to wake him up to keep drinking but it didn’t work so well for another couple months. So there it was I stopped the breast feeding around 9 months as Gael would rather have solid food. And he absolutely loved it.  On a steam tray, I would put down all different veggies that had all those different colors. Carrots in Orange, Zucchini in Green, Potato in Light Yellow….Like any mom would do.  I also made all sort of mushrooms for Gael. Porto Bello was a good meaty texture he loved. Oyster mushrooms, Shitake and also Champignon. I made them all. Cut them into small pieces and put them on the pan with a spoonful of Grandma Livia’s Extra virgin Olive oil from Italy.  How abut Tofu? He must have had trays and trays of them, it was excellent source of protein and such easy food to eat without all those teeth. Then later on, there was ” PASTA.”  Soooo Good! Isn’t it?  Penne with light fresh tomato sauce. So easy to grab and fun to eat. The Penne Rigate ( penne with lines) were the one I would usually buy. The lines hold sauce nicely. So Gael would have good amount of sauce on his pasta as he wasn’t using a fork just yet.  I think we always cared about Gael tasting things properly. Not just being fed.

Then there is all this cooking we do at home. And Gael is always a part of it. Both Emiliano and I believe we eat much better at home. We cook simple and hearty food.  We cook all the time. We do all sort of international cooking. All these prepping, shopping and brain storming is fun and we do it together. Gael gets so fascinated and enjoys watching us and always like to help. Washing up tomatoes was maybe the first Gael’s action in the kitchen. I think we allowed and taught him using a small table knife for chopping since he was abut 6 years old.



IMG_0055Gael lovess to use this dish. It’s a shape of little fish that’s elevated by a stand. We got this dish in Livorno, Italy.

IMG_0049The chef.


IMG_8964Gael’s famous “Juice cocktail”. Gael likes to make this while we are prepping dinner or when friends are visiting. He will just glide into the kitchen quietly and start chopping. No big talk is needed. And I love that! There will be always one big surprise at the bottom in your glass!



IMG_3512Making Panzerotti at Beppe’s. Southern Italian dish. Sort of Fried mini Calzone or Gigantic ravioli. Either way. Here Gael at 6.


IMG_4187Guess which one is Gael’s.


IMG_3534One of Gael’s Favorite ingredients, Cucumber! Now Gael makes his own cucumber salad. I taught him to use mandolin slicer ( always under my supervision). He likes it with apple cider vinegar, salt and olive oil. Gael had written a food truck plan selling all dishes based on Cucumbers a few weeks ago! It comes with truck design, his menu and prices. Oh yes and the combo dishes! Many brilliant ides!

IMG_7468Emi and Gael making pizza dough. Gael here at 6.




IMG_1183Gael cracking eggs for an Easter cake with Riccota cheese, spinach and layers of Filo dough.



IMG_3978Here Gael making dumplings with me. Gael at 5.



IMG_3983Gael’s Excellent job here on shaping dumplings! So cute his little hand.


IMG_3690Here Gael eying on and putting his finger into the batter for fried zucchini flowers. Gael at age 4.

IMG_3695Gael looking over Philipp making apple pies.

Now Gael’s almost 9 years old, Gael volunteers to set up the table and he always puts his flare on it. Gael gets creative with the way he wraps the napkins around the fork and knife or the position of glasses next to plates. He will run between kitchen to the table with plated food for each guest. Gael had well developed amazing palette for food at his only almost 9 years old. Kale, mushroom, carrot, mustard green, tossed salad, arugula his favorite salad green, all the shellfish you can imagine since 3 years old, he started talking to Cheese shop man asking for tasting and got his Cheese list started already, truffle oil does kick a notch for him over his meat, pasta and cheese, al dente means al dente for all the pasta he eats, beans and particular way of cooked rice, loves sashimi and sushi… the list goes on and he’s happy with any great hearty food and willing to try all. I think it all comes from his open mind and our effort of teaching him to be that way.

Gael, I think it’s about a time for you to learn to make a few pasta dishes!  Sharpen your knife and roll up you sleeves! Here comes mama to show you a few things.  Love you Gael!

VivA Food, VivA Gael! A little Iron Chef!

IMG_0011Music brings people together. Emi holding little cutie Marlowe, Gael and Milo. They are all facing Nik, our front man of tonight’s jam session!  At Jess and Nik’s home.

Saturday night with good old friends and new friends at Jess’s lovely loft in Clinton hill. Prosecco, white wine or whatever you wish. Nik and Jess got it all covered with beautiful arrange of cheese and crispy fried whole little fish, Marithes were just perfect starters. Lovely old friend Else totally surprised us when we walked in!!  It has been So long Else! Else was visiting NYC from Israel for her business. It was so so good to see you and catch up a little. Then introduction to a new lovely family Francesco and Carin with a beautiful kid, Milo!  Milo just enrolled into P.S 11 the same school where Gael goes to and the fact that Milo had well traveled around the world including living in Italy for the last few years is just exciting for Gael and us!  So many things in common! The age, Italian speaking, the same school and traveling makes being together much more fun. There is this instant connection. They both are into soccer and basketball. And the last but not least, Music!

IMG_0005Nik leading Milo.

IMG_0004Emi and Marlowe in the matching outfit!

IMG_0007Emi singing and goofing around. Ahh it’s so much fun!  Gael on a drum.

IMG_0009Love you kids!

IMG_0012Marlowe gotta try it!


IMG_0016Just like Emi, Gael’s excellent at coming up with instant lyrics that would never ever stop! We are dying laughing and so as Milo. Milo keep it up, You will be amazing. Gael and Marlowe, love you two!

Hats off to Nik and Jess. Thanks again for the lovely night together.

Viva Friends!