the lifestyle reporter

TLR Travels: London, England

Mar
01

I’m currently in London and filming a vlog every day during my holiday! Please subscribe to my channel https://www.youtube.com/user/TheLifestyleReporter¬†

And watch my travel vlogs ūüôā let me know what you think.

My latest vlog

Xxx

Sarah

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Travel Diaries: Las Vegas, Nevada

Aug
05

Las Vegas, Nevada is a place that everyone needs to experience at least once in their life, and with that in mind, I visited the City of Sin last month! ¬†It was only two and half days–some of it was a blur, and the rest, well it was unforgettable! ¬†Here’s a rundown of what I did, what I liked (and didn’t)!

WHERE I STAYED AND HOW I GOT TO VEGAS

Palazzo Exterior Shot

Photo Courtesy of: Palazzo.com

I stayed at the Palazzo Hotel, which is located on the Vegas Strip. The Palazzo is actually connected to the Venetian Hotel. You can walk through the Palazzo casino and end up in the Venetian, which was really convenient because it was 115 degrees F and I didn’t really want to be outside. ¬†There are shops and restaurants within the Venetian, so there really is no reason ¬†to leave the two hotels. ¬†The room was clean and perfect to crash at in the early morning hours lol. ¬†Everyone was helpful and I felt very safe there.

We drove from Los Angeles to Vegas, which was about a 6 hour drive because of traffic. ¬†It was so hot and uncomfortable–next time I’m definitely going to fly there.

WHERE I WENT

Tao NightClub

3377 South Las Vegas Boulevard,
Las Vegas, NV 89109
(Inside Venetian Hotel)

The first night in Vegas we spent at Tao¬†Nightclub. It’s everything you imagine Vegas to be–crowded, crazy and loud. ¬†Tao is not just a nightclub, there’s also a Tao Beach, and a restaurant. ¬†Tao is located inside the Venetian.

About the nightclub: There was no room to dance and it was really dark inside.  The music was amazing, I think Major Lazer was there.  The one thing that really bugged me was that the bathrooms were upstairs and it was so dark in there so no makeup touch ups :).  Otherwise it was so much fun!

Tao Beach

3377 South Las Vegas Boulevard,
Las Vegas, NV 89109
(in Venetian Hotel, above Tao Nightclub)

Tao Beach Las Vegas

Photo Courtesy of: TaoLasVegas.com

Saturday afternoon was hot, I think it was 116 degrees F and we all wanted to try out Tao Beach. ¬†I definitely regret that decision. ¬†It was completely and utterly packed. ¬†You have to come early to get an umbrella to sit under. ¬†We didn’t go early and I never felt more unforgettably hot than that day. ¬†We stood in the direct sun and I could literally feel myself being sunburned within a few minutes. ¬†I was sweating profusely and I didn’t want to go swimming. ¬†There were hundreds of people in the water and everyone was drinking. ¬†I couldn’t imagine drinking when it was so hot outside so after 15 minutes, I left to go inside the air conditioned hotel. ¬†But my friends that stayed had a great time with the music and drinking, so if you don’t mind being in direct desert sun, you should check it out.

XS NightClub in Wynn Hotel

3121 South Las Vegas Boulevard,
Las Vegas, NV 89109

It was so smokey at XS, and I know that it’s allowed and everything, but as a non-smoker, it was really, really strong. ¬†It was really crowded and most people were just standing in groups talking and drinking. Kaskade was there DJing, and I loved the music. ¬†Justin Bieber was actually there too so everyone was trying to get to closer to him. It’s an outdoor club so it was really warm outside. ¬†I was sweating and I was literally wishing for air conditioning.

What I ate:

Grimaldi’s Pizzeria

3200 Las Vegas Blvd space Ste. 1540
Las Vegas, NV 89109

Grimaldi's Pizzeria Las Vegas

Photo Courtesy of: Grimaldispizzeria.com

Grimaldi’s Pizzeria is amazing! ¬†My sister and I ordered a small pizza with bell peppers and tomatoes–I took the cheese off of my mine, which wasn’t that hard, because it only had a small amount of cheese. ¬†The pizza was delicious! ¬†The crust and sauce tasted amazing! ¬†We got a small side salad–the Mediterean without cheese and dressing of the side. ¬†This is a great spot if you want to do a quick sit down or if you want to grab it and eat at the hotel.

Bouchon

The Venetian
Venezia Tower
Accessible via Guest Elevators, Level 10

Bouchon Las Vegas

Photo Courtesy of: Venetian.com

Wow this place is a must! ¬†Bouchon is a French restaurant on the tenth floor of the Venetian Hotel. It’s a bit of a trek to get there but you won’t regret it. ¬†They have breakfast, brunch, dinner so you can choose which meal you want to indulge in. ¬†Yes it’s pricier but it’s worth it. ¬†They have the yummiest pastries and sweets so if you’re like me and you love the sweeter items, you won’t regret it. I had oatmeal with coffee and fruit. The oatmeal was water based and I had soy milk with my coffee–both vegan. ¬†Their salads looked good–next time I’m there I’m going to try it. Just make sure you check the website that it’s open when you’re going. They close between breakfast, brunch and dinner so check before heading that way.

Juice Farm

First floor (by casinos) of The Palazzo and Venetian

Palazzo location:

3325 S Las Vegas Blvd
Las Vegas, NV

Venetian location:

3355 S Las Vegas Blvd
Las Vegas, NV

There are two locations, one in the Venetian and the other the Palazzo. ¬†All of their items are organic. ¬†They have juices, smoothies, salads and acai bowls. ¬†They also have shots of wheatgrass, etc. ¬†We got smoothies there–and they were really refreshing. It’s right by the casino, which is kinda funny when you think about it. ¬†I felt like I needed some veggies and fruit and luckily there were two Juice Farms. ¬†The food options in Vegas aren’t always the healthiest so it’s nice to know there is an organic juice/smoothie shop. ¬†The only downside is that it’s really pricey, like $12 for a smoothie. but it is organic and you are in the middle of the Vegas strip, so I’d still recommend it.

Hopefully this is helpful. ¬†If I did my Vegas trip again, I would probably bring more healthy foods with me. ¬†The restaurants there don’t really have any healthy or vegan options so finding something to eat was difficult. ¬†Everything is pricey in Vegas so be ready for that. ¬†An iced coffee at Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf was about $5.

Overall, it was a fun, but brief trip. ¬†People always say you got to do Vegas at least once when you’re young, and I’m glad I did.

xxx

Sarah

Travel Diaries: Seed Kitchen in Venice Beach, CA

May
20

Seed Kitchen Venice BeachSeed Kitchen:
1604 Pacific Avenue
Venice Beach, CA 90291

My sister and I visited Seed Kitchen in Venice Beach a couple of Saturdays ago. ¬†We were absolutely starving and on our way home from Orangetheory Fitness in Santa Monica. ¬†Seed Kitchen¬†is completely vegan, organic and macrobiotic. ¬†We couldn’t decide between here and Cafe Gratitude but eventually decided on Seed because it was on the way home and we wanted to try a new spot. ¬†Parking was absolutely horrible because there’s only about 20 parking for 5 restaurants and it’s right by the beach. ¬†It was a Saturday afternoon so it was of course packed and we had wait a while for a spot. ¬†You also have to pay for parking but that’s not really a surprise in LA.

Once we got in, the cashier was helpful and patient even though we were asking a ton of questions. ¬†Their menu is pretty small so there weren’t¬†many choices. Most of the dishes contain seitan or tempeh. ¬†I personally don’t like seitan or tempeh because I don’t really want my meals to taste like “real meat”–I don’t like the flavor of that. ¬†They have lots of burgers, panini, and grain bowls, but most of these items have faux meat or cheese in them.

Seed Kitchen Sweet Potato Fries

He recommended the Southwest burger, which contains an original bean and grain burger, along with lettuce, soy cheese, avocado and ancho chili spread. We decided to get that, but without the soy cheese, and added an order of sweet potato fries. ¬†It’s pretty pricey here, but I guess you need to take in account that everything is organic. ¬†The burger cost $11.95 and comes with coleslaw. ¬†The sweet potatoes cost $6.00.

The burger came on a soft ciabatta-type bread, which perfectly complimented the smokey spicy flavors of the burger. The flavor was actually really delicious, especially the bean and grain patty. ¬†It wasn’t really that spicy but it definitely had a really good flavor. ¬†The fries were absolutely delicious! ¬†They didn’t taste oily, and were crunchy on the outside and soft on the inside.

Seed Kitchen Southwest Burger Venice Beach

One major downside to Seed Kitchen is the fact that they actually don’t have a bathroom. ¬†My sister and I like to wash our hands before eating and that was not possible. They only offer sanitizing wet wipes, which personally I don’t think cleans your hands very well.

Overall, pros included excellent bean based burger and delicious fries.¬†Cons are the bad parking situation and no¬†bathroom, but if you’re in the area or at the beach and need a quick lunch, Seed Kitchen is your spot.

Seed Kitchen Venice Beach

 

 

Travel Diaries: Cafe Gratitude in Downtown Los Angeles

Apr
22

Cafe Gratitude, Downtown Los Angeles- 

300 S Santa Fe Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90013

On Sunday, I decided to venture out to the Arts District in Downtown Los Angeles to eat at the brand new Cafe Gratitude. ¬†I’ve been to the Cafe Gratitude in Venice many times but the downtown location opened a few weeks ago and I really wanted to check it out.

The Arts District¬†is actually the Eastern side of Downtown LA. ¬†It used to be the industrial sector of LA, and so a lot of the apartments and businesses took over those buildings. ¬†It’s so beautiful to me–it’s a mixture of the past, with all of those industrial builidngs, and the present, with the graffiti and art everywhere. ¬†It is such a creative area of LA and definitely a hidden gem.

The first thing I noticed was that there was an actual parking lot for Cafe Gratitude, and you don’t have to pay! ¬†This is huge in LA, because 99% of the time there is no parking, only metered street or garage parking, and you have to pay for. ¬†This parking lot was free–which was a great surprise. ¬†I went with my sister and my friend and much to our surprise, it was almost completely empty. We arrived at 11 am on a Sunday–and it seems like that is the perfect time. ¬†We were immediately seated at our table. ¬† The whole restaurant had a great look to it–white and wood detailing–very clean and pretty.

Cafe Gratitude

Our waitress was amazing! ¬†She was so patient with us even though we were so indecisive. ¬†I ended up ordering the “Open Hearted”–two gluten free buckwheat-flax pancakes. I added cashew whipped cream and fresh fruit and an iced almond milk coffee. ¬†It was so good! ¬†The pancakes were so tasty and light. The cashew whip was the perfect sweet topping. ¬†One of the best vegan pancakes I’ve ever had! ¬†I was so full!

My sister ordered the “Extraordinary,” which is a vegan BLT burger, with coconut bacon, romaine, tomatoes, and a chipotle cashew aioli sauce. ¬†It came with a coleslaw on the side. ¬†She told me the sandwich was absolutely delicious and the coconut bacon tasted good. ¬†My sis and I have actually never had bacon and never will so for her to tell me the vegan coconut bacon was good is something I did not expect. ¬†She said it just tasted like crispy coconut and gave the sandwich a tang of sweetness, which she loved. ¬†The burger was on focaccia-type bread and it looked so soft and fluffy. ¬†She also ordered the iced almond milk coffee.

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My friend ordered the “Fruitful” smoothie, which had things like banana, dates, vanilla and orange juice in it. She also ordered the “Humble,” their Indian curry bowl. ¬†It had red lentil dal, spinach, yams with a spicy mint chutney. You can choose between quinoa or brown rice. ¬†She told me both the smoothie and meal were amazing!

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Although it can be pricey, it is worth it! The food is all organic so it makes sense the prices are a little higher. ¬†My pancakes were $13 but it made me full for several hours. ¬†I think our final bill was $58 (not counting tip of course ūüôā ) but I think the price is fair, considering how everything was high quality organic dishes.

The neighborhood around Cafe Gratitude is definitely worth exploring–I didn’t have time to explore, but the next time I come, I have to do a little tour. ¬†So if you’re ever in the area, make sure to check out Cafe Gratitude in downtown LA. ¬†I absolutely recommend¬†it!

Here are some more photos from the restaurant and the area around it:

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Travel Diaries: Hotel Erwin in Venice Beach, CA

Apr
08

Hotel Erwin: 1697 Pacific Avenue, Venice, CA 90291

Hotel Erwin looks like every other hotel on the outside, but if you take the elevator up to the rooftop, you will get to experience Venice Beach from above. ¬†High Lounge, the hotel’s rooftop deck, is the only one of its kind in Venice Beach. I visited the lounge on a Saturday night and let me just say, the view is absolutely breathtaking. ¬†Steps from the beach, it’s a great spot to start the night out or finish up after a day at the beach. ¬†The sunset is gorgeous from up here and an absolute must see.

They have multiple tables with lounge chairs so you can sit comfortably while taking in the view. ¬†While there is heat lamps, I would suggest taking a jacket as well as a hair band because the wind can be cold and pretty much every picture I took there was hair in my face. ¬†The drinks were absolutely delicious and while I didn’t eat any of the appetizers, they did look delicious.

Hotel Erwin’s rooftop lounge is a definite must do when in LA. To check out more info on the lounge and hotel, out more here.

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Photo Courtesy of : HotelErwin.com

Photo Credit : HotelErwin.com

 

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