Thursday, May 21, 2015

| E X P L O R E | 21c Museum Hotel - Durham

One of the latest in several boutique hotels popping up in Durham, the 21c Museum Hotel is a must visit when you are in Downtown Durham. Not only is it a chic new hotel in a renovated historical building, it's also a very cool art gallery.There are several art installations and you can find art in the stairwells and elevators as well. (And a must! Check out the bathrooms!) Rotating exhibits will be featured as well, I believe twice a year.  The current exhibit is called Pop Stars! Popular Culture and Contemporary Art.

The exhibits are fresh, modern and provocative. The current exhibit has had many local people talking.
We walked through after dinner in Durham recently with our two teenagers and had some good discussions for sure!

There is a restaurant and bar as well. Counting House is a great spot if you are looking for a nice dinner or a drink, especially before or after a show at DPAC or Carolina Theatre. Led by Executive Chef Josh Munchel, Counting House features NC cuisine with a global perspective.

Next time you are thinking of something new to do, why not get out and explore locally. With it's fabulous food and drink scene, baseball games and amazing cultural and art centers, Durham has so many great options. And make sure to pop into the 21c Museum Hotel for something new and different!

The 21c Museum Hotel is located at 111 North Corcoran Street in downtown Durham and was recently featured in Architectural Digest.

Recognize this person?

This musician was very recently featured in a NYC MOMA exhibit

Hotel Gift Shop

Counting House

A local favorite very close by the hotel.
Directions from Raleigh: Take I-40 West and take exit 279 B towards Durham/Downtown. Merge onto NC-147 North and take exit 12B toward Roxboro Street/Mangum Street. Turn right on South Roxboro Street and turn left onto East Main Street. Turn right onto Corcoran Street. 21c is on the left.

Friday, April 17, 2015

| D I N E | Driftwood Southern Kitchen

Hey Raleigh, have you been to Driftwood Southern Kitchen yet? Well you should! In case you have not, Driftwood is located in Lafayette Village, off Falls of Neuse in North Raleigh. Driftwood offers southern cuisine at its finest, a fully stocked bar, seating at the open kitchen, big tables, semi-private spaces AND outdoor seating. The menu rotates with seasonal new dishes while maintaining some of their favorite/best-sellers. Small plates are nice options for sharing and the mains come in small or regular size portions.

Stop in for a drink and a snack at the bar or make plans for a large group lunch or dinner celebration. Some of my favorite small plates include the Fried Green Tomatoes, House Pimiento Cheese and the Wings! The pulled pork shoulder main is absolutely delicious. Rosemary Tater Tots with crushed garlic or Mac and Cheese make for a nice side. I haven't explored the desserts yet, but I'm sure they're pretty amazing.

I particularly like the way they present their food. Even a cup of coffee is a treat to order! Atmosphere is friendly and feels like some of the places you would find in downtown Raleigh. Location is nice, especially with good weather on the horizon. You can eat lunch or dinner and then wander around with lots of great little shops and boutiques around Lafayette Village.

If you enjoy Southern cuisine and a rustic, farmhouse atmosphere, Driftwood is the place. There are daily drink specials for every day of the week! So, what are you waiting for? ;-)

Driftwood Dining room and Bar


Bloody Mary!

Fried Green Tomatoes

To die for Hush Puppies

Seating at the bar

NC Beer and Wings

Crispy Chicken Sandwich

Rosemary Tater Tots

Arugula Salad (SO good!)

Pork Shoulder and a side of Mac and Cheese

Everyday Drink Specials!
Driftwood at Lafayette Village

Thursday, March 19, 2015

| EXPLORE | Art in Bloom this weekend at the NC Art Museum

Starting today through Sunday (3/19-3/22) the NC Art Museum presents ART IN BLOOM, the NCMA’s inaugural festival of art and flowers. 45 stunning floral masterpieces created by world-class floral designers from all around North Carolina and a few other states designed and created their masterpieces based on inspiration from select artwork from the permanent collection in the West Building. This event is a ticketed exhibit and is a first for NCMA. The proceeds from this festival go directly to funding the museum's ongoing programming.

The festival also includes many additional events such as master classes, floral demonstrations, and presentations by the floral designer for the Royal Family, internationally renowned floral artists, and local florist owners and lecturers. Family events, wine tastings and trunk shows are also part of the line up. (click here to see the museum's more detailed list of events)

I was thrilled to get to tour the museum yesterday while the artists were busy putting together their works of art, allowing for a "behind the scenes" sneak peek. I loved seeing the permanent collection pieces transformed with the partnering of these unique floral interpretations. Make sure to walk around the museum for plenty of eye-catching outdoor floral beauty. Catch the Bonsai Trees in the garden.  Drink a Joe Van Gogh Violet-Vanilla Bean Latte at Iris SIP.  Enjoy this kickstart to Spring in Raleigh.

I hope that you can find time to get to the exhibit this weekend because, like the flowers, it is only available to enjoy for a very limited time before the blooms fade away....

Tickets to Art in Bloom are $10 for NCMA members and $15 for nonmembers (free admission for children 6 and under). All related events (lectures, demonstrations, family activities) require separate tickets. During the four days of Art in Bloom, tickets will be required for admission to the permanent collection in the Museum's West Building. East Building and the Museum Park will remain open and free to visitors.

Stop in to IRIS SIP and get a special ART IN BLOOM latte:
Violet-Vanilla Bean Latte (with sprinkles!)

Museum Store Trunk Shows

Thursday, March 12, 2015

| SHOP | New Moon & Lola Boutique Opens in Cameron Village

Exciting retail news for Raleigh this week! Moon & Lola has just opened their newest store in Cameron Village! Located at 2014 Cameron Street. This beautiful store is fresh and fun and fits nicely into the Cameron Village boutique shops.  Moon and Lola also has store locations on Wilmington Street in downtown Raleigh and Apex. I'm thrilled to have another M&L shop to visit, especially if you frequent the Cameron Village area for retail shopping already.  M&L offers stunning and unique jewelry as well as all kinds of fun note cards, decor and accessories. Ideal store for gift shopping!
A Sneak Preview Cocktail Party kicked off the Grand Opening and the store is now open with regular hours. Visit soon and keep shopping local, Raleigh!