Top Picks for Springtime Travel

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Dabble’s Travel Contributors, Stephanie Gray and Jennifer Weatherhead, suggest the best places for springtime travelling.

Where: Paris

Why: While the weather might be fickle (you may see rain one day, sun the next), we bet you’ll quickly overlook any gloomy days upon seeing the gorgeous blooms and lush trees that decorate the already beautiful landscape. Not to mention the height of tourist season in Paris comes in the summer, so you’ll be in town when the locals are. For those who are tennis fans, consider planning around the French Open which occurs every May at Roland Garros.

Travel Tip: Beat any weather woes by dressing in layers and packing a chic umbrella.

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Where: Amsterdam

Why: There’s nothing that says spring more than tulips and Amsterdam in April is the month when this flower blanket fields all across the Netherlands. It’s also the same time you can experience the annual Tulip Festival held at Keukenhof Gardens. Running from March 22 to May 22, 2012, it’s a gorgeous park filled with more than 7 million flowers that will instantly put you in spring mode. If partying is a must (come on, you are in Amsterdam), consider staying on April 30, Queen’s Day, when the streets turn into a giant party.

Where: Arizona

Why: Visitors come to enjoy this state all-year round, thanks to the hot weather, stunning natural landscape and world-class spas, but if you’re hoping to save a bit of cash and beat the heat, a late spring trip is your best bet. In the desert areas like Phoenix and Scottsdale, the highest hotel rates are from January to April, so waiting a little later in the year can be easier on your wallet. Plus it’s a great time to see the Grand Canyon, as it’s not as crowded and the temperatures will be nicer too

To find out what other locales need to be on your Spring Travel list, go to Pretty Chic Travel

Check out Stephanie and Jennifer’s top picks for where to drink tea recently featured in Issue 7: Apr/May’12

Luxe Desert Retreat

  • Jamie used a grasscloth wallpaper in the foyer and hall to create textural interest without distracting from the beauty of the moulding.
  • “Reflective quality doesn’t always have to be glass, marble or other hard surfaces. Shine also comes from fabrics like the silk velvet material on the sofa cushions.” ~ Jamie
  • A classic white kitchen with framed cabinetry and white Calcutta marble countertops complements the home’s traditional elements. A custom marble mosaic on the back of the island acts as powerful art in a neutral colour scheme.
  • In the master bedroom, Jamie demonstrates that it is completely acceptable to put a bed in front of a window.
  • “I reoriented the floor plan and put the bed in front of the window deliberately to make the bed front and center in the room.”

You wouldn’t know it from its formal interior, but this 7000 square foot home is located in Paradise Valley, Arizona, amidst the deserts and the cacti. Designer Jamie Herzlinger is up to the challenge of transforming the house from top to bottom with her client’s specific vision in mind: luxe desert retreat.

When you enter the home you are instantly greeted by the 19th century Dutch corbeille-shaped canapé which sits on top of Marie Antoinette patterned hardwood floors: the entrance showstopper.

Jamie designed a niche in the foyer to give the room a large presence. The mirror, that sits above the Marquetry commode, purposely reflects into the dining room.

Jamie describes this space as refined elegance because it’s not too formal but formal enough to go from jeans to black tie.

Jamie says the key to achieving a similar look is to always keep it simple. A neutral palette should have different variations of white and flexible lighting, including table lamps and a chandelier like the Sophia Chandelier by Jan Showers. Desert life never looked so luxe.

Photography by Werner Segarra.