design · goals · travel


palihouse instagram photo.jpgThere is some seed sprouting or thread emerging along my internal lines of desire for design.  Particularly hospitality design, particularly high-end boutique design.  (The reflection upon which brought startling tears during meditation this morning, but enough on that.)

J’s birthday last summer was one he’d have rather passed unnoticed but, being my know-it-all self, I clearly knew a better way, which was to visit this town he kept speaking about, San Luis Obispo.  And if we were going to visit for a 3-day weekend, then we weren’t staying at a Motel 6.

I began to research smaller, independent hotels in the area and came upon the Hotel Granada.  Frankly, I didn’t choose to research boutique hotels, because I wouldn’t have really known what that was.  I just web-searched the best hotels, and after clicking on a cute inn—that ended up looking like a grandmother’s doily collection exploded—the Hotel Granada was it.  Exposed brick walls, contemporary artistic photographs, local coffee service, the guts from a dissembled baby grand from the original hotel decoratively hung in common areas.

It spoke of lush, design, thoughtfulness, invitation, calm and sexy.  Done.

Our stay was phenomenal.

And this led us together on a path toward a few others: The Highline Hotel in New York City and The Palihouse in Santa Monica.

Everywhere we went, I ate the walls with my camera.  I documented everything, researched who was who in the creation of the hotels.  J and I spoke about how it might work to be a partner in a project like that (those brainstorming moments were some of his most alive).  By the time we’d stayed at the Palihouse, almost a year from our Granada experience, called up on my iPad were 3 interviews with a man to contact about how to get into this business.

Then J and I broke up.

Yesterday, I allowed myself a pajama day.  It was glorious.  And I watched a Netflix show called “StayHere” about how to maximize your home to host short-term rental guests.  Politics of economy and displacement aside (eek), watching the design take place was breathtaking.  Every piece carefully chosen, every photo “gram-worthy,” the copy on the website inviting and friendly.

God, how I wanted to do that!!

Each episode I had a smile on my face, there was something exciting about it.  I was inspired.  In discovering a magnet whose pole was calling to mine, I felt uplifted.

But where and how does this thread go?  Dunno!

I do know that I have engaged a financial advisor with whom I’ll meet again in September and October as she gathers my facts and future details to construct an ultimate plan for me. (omigod, thank god there are people whose JOB IT IS to do this! I was lost for a little while there.)

In our “What are your goals?” meeting in September, I intend to at least mention this seed/thread within me.  Because there is no execution without a plan.

There is something so … delicious? luscious? enlivening? in thinking about design from this frame of mind.  It’s not that I want to do it to my own home, which of course I do, but it’s about doing it for others, for another’s experience, for planning and plotting from moment one how a person is received, cared for, and set on their way.

Somehow to provide a hug to people without ever even meeting them.  Which I guess is kinda what I choose to do here.  Neat.


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