Once Upon a Time: Alexandria & Steven

Hi Romantics! I hope you’re all enjoying your Tuesday! I’m sipping down a RedBull at the front desk as I type this – there’s nothing like “wings” to get you through the day. ūüėČ

I’m typing in today for the second installment of our Once Upon a Time series. I really hope you guys are enjoying having a peek into our personal stories of romance and feel encouraged that any day can be the day you find your heart’s best friend! I’m seriously such a hopeful romantic and this post should show you why.

December 8th, 2009, I was having a tearful heart-to-heart with one of the best friends I had made in this city. The two of us sat on a big leather couch in the Student Lounge of her college, in the basement of the Empire State Building. Surrounded by Starbucks-style decor and students studying, she informed me that her parents were making her move back to Alabama and she’d be leaving before the school year came to a close.

We were both crushed, trying to find a bright side to the situation, when the most attractive man I’d ever seen knelt before us and began to comfort her. I listened in while he said the sweetest things I’d ever heard to my auburn-haired friend. I couldn’t help but think he was amazing and want to know more.

But – as the conversation continued, it became really obvious that he was making eye contact with¬†her ONLY. The conversation lasted for a good ten minutes, and he didn’t glance at me once! I started to get annoyed and wonder what his deal was, until…

he said to my friend: “I don’t understand how you can be so upset when you have friends THIS beautiful here to support you…” {he turned to look at me} “.. hi, I’m Steven.”

Oh, brother! Right? Well, it caught my attention. My friend gave him my number & we began texting that night. Who knew that would be the start of my happily ever after?

Be hopeful, Romantics. You never know what’s around the corner!

xoxo – Alexandria

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Romantic City: Mihoko’s 21 Grams

For a Romantic evening out, Mihoko’s 21 Grams cannot be topped!

* all images taken from their website *
While most NYC restaurants are designed with their business lunch/dinner clients in mind, I cannot tell you the absolute delight I felt walking into Mihoko’s 21 Grams. ¬†The atmosphere screams, “Forget about work and let’s party in the most exclusive way!” ¬†The decor sets the stage entirely for romance with pastel damask, white tablecloths, and flirtatious Louis XVI accents placed all over the rooms in unique ways.
When describing this room, I say that from the waist down it screams formal, three star french dining.  The tables are sectioned off by wooden screens, paneled with various colors of pastel damask.  The white table cloths are adorned with perfectly placed settings, beautiful cutlery, and elegant china.
¬†The walls tell a different story, though! ¬†This large, Flatiron loft space is divided into three sections by a large bar in the center. ¬†The walls are embellished with staggered heights of ¬†Rococo paintings, mixed with wooden-framed, garland motif mirrors. The mirrors are consistent with those removed from old Parisian apartments. ¬†They’re all featured whimsically, at playful, staggering heights.
I have to mention the basement bar – OMG!!! ¬†It is papered with life size, black and white photo wallpaper of the walls of Versailles! ¬†The furnishings encourage cozy talks and intimate conversation… so romantic!
The cocktail list is over the moon in uniqueness, featuring inspired combinations of the most delicious ingredients. ¬†Both the food and cocktails are reflective of Mihoko’s (a well known Ballerina in Japan) love of all things French and Japanese. ¬†Therefore, cocktail, dinner and dessert menus are enhanced with Japanese ingredients prepared in modern French ways.
That said, aside from the sushi menu they offer, the food appeared to be mostly modern French to me.
Unless you are coming here for drinks (which I highly recommend) or ¬†dining here for just cocktails and sushi, I think this is more of a special occasion restaurant. ¬†That said, hurry! ¬†Find a special occasion to celebrate and make this your first, most romantic destination! ¬†It’s gorgeous, playful and completely cool all at the same time.
Did I mention the interior designer is Bruno Borrione, a Philippe Stark prodigy?
Love, Marisa

Romantic Occasion: Sunset Sail

Hello, Romantics! Happy Thursday!

Today I’ve been daydreaming about summer love and the beginning of my relationship with my hubby. ¬†Each birthday with him has been over the top romantic, but I thought this one would be perfect to share with you. ¬†There’s still time to make this happen this season, so please steal this idea to make any occasion a romantic one!

The word “nautical” doesn’t normally come to mind when people think of NYC, but we’re surrounded by water! ¬†The city offers several ways to take advantage of this perk, but so far, this is my favorite one – a sunset sail around Manhattan.

For my 20th birthday, my boyfriend (now husband) told me to get all dressed up and meet him in Chelsea. ¬†He said we were late for dinner reservations and convinced me to literally run up 10th avenue in heels! ¬†I was still new to NYC, so when he told me we were lost and should ask for directions, I didn’t question him. ¬†We walked into Chelsea Piers at Pier 62, and when I approached the person at the booth to ask for directions, my boyfriend handed the guy tickets! I was so confused at first, and then surprised!

Within minutes we were boarding the beautiful, “Adirondack“. We left the pier just as the sun was starting to set, and went South around lower Manhattan, the Statue of Liberty, and back up along the Hudson. The crew came around often with complimentary wine and blankets to warm you up from the ocean breeze. It was the ultimate snuggle scenario.

The views of the city were breathtaking as the sky turned pink and purple. I couldn’t help but take a million pictures. ¬†The sail was slow and relaxing, with enough time to really enjoy some quality time with my love. There was plenty of room to be cuddly without feeling uncomfortable, but people close enough to make new friends if you wanted to. We actually went dancing with the couple next to us when we pulled back into the piers!

Since moving to NYC, this is still one of my favorite memories. I hope we get to do it again soon.  The season to buy tickets is still open for a few more weeks this year and would be a great way to send off summer.  If you end up booking a trip, please, let me know how it is!  I love reading your comments.

xoxo *& happy sailing!* – Alexandria

Romantic City: Financial District

On our 11th year after September 11th

I remember every detail of this day as if it were yesterday and actually feel that this should be a national holiday, where we close our business and stay home and grieve for those who did not survive this horrific moment in our American history. When this day comes each year, I am so filled with sadness that I can’t imagine anyone who feels like working and going on with normal day to day activities. That said, I am not sure that those fallen would agree. I think the idea that we would grieve and feel the least bit defeated would simply feed into what the terrorist philosophy wanted. So in all due respect, I have come up with a bitter sweet day or evening of activities which will allow you to honor those you knew, loved or feel compassion for, while, living life and enjoying the beauty that NYC has to offer.

My favorite way to begin the day or evening would be to make arrangements to dine at the restaurant cafe of The World Center Hotel. (for hotel guests primarily, and not completely open to the public, however, they said they can make concessions). Their cafe view over looks the World Trade Center site and will inspire you with the progress made over the last 11 years. You have full view of the magnificent fountains in the foot print of the towers as well as the landscaping, the newer buildings and the updates on the large towers going up. When Liz and I dined there we thought it fun and appropriate to go fully American with Chicken Wings and Sliders which were very special and absolutely delicious! They have a full menu of salads and main courses, as well!  And the cocktails are a bargain and beautifully prepared.

Next store is the W Hotel Downtown, in the event you chose to have drinks before or after. The W is a great place to visit. Other ideas we have are to take a stroll over to Trinity Church, and head over the elevated walk way to the World Financial Center, through the back, to the patio and boating dock. The view is magnificent, and shows off the powerful vibe of NYC architecture in the most awe striking way.

We were disappointed to find that the bar at the top of the Ritz Carlton Downtown is now only available for weddings and private parties, but the concierge recommended to check out the roof top bar at the New Conrad Hotel. I must say, the view did not compare to The Ritz, and the cocktails were pricy but it was a lovely, intimate space, perfect for privacy and romance, with still an incredible view.

May you and your loved ones cherish this day, remember the fallen and make the most of each day we are here to enjoy our gorgeous city. A city perfect for the everyday romantic!

Love, Marisa

Romantic Sparkle: Sapphires

I am so excited to be writing our very first post of the “Romantic Sparkle” series! ¬†Working at Marisa Perry Atelier, I get to see so many beautiful things that I want to share with the world and finally we have the perfect outlet! Are you excited to see some sparkle? ūüėČ The first two photos are of a classic take on a sapphire ring, and the last two are more modern rings from our designer, Douglas Elliott.

This beautiful Princess Diana style ring features a 5.35 carat oval sapphire, with 1.67 carats of diamonds in the setting. ¬†I am so in love with this ring. ¬†It’s so classic.

Below are two rings by our designer, Douglas Elliott. Both sapphires are set in our “In Love” setting, in platinum.

This ring directly below features a 1.95 carat, cushion cut, naturally beautiful sapphire.

Now, this ring below features a 2.64 carat, cushion cut sapphire with a special, fancy intense pink diamond on the inside as a secret love note to the bride. Aww…

Each item featured in our Romantic Sparkle series is currently in stock at Marisa Perry Atelier and available for purchase.

– xoxo – Alexandria

Which ring is your favorite? Classic or Modern? Let us know in the comments!