Slip Into Style
When it comes to shoes, fashion and function no longer have to vie for the jet-setter’s affection. With CitySlips available in leopard print, snakeskin, and yes, the triumphant glitter toe, travelers can commute in style—without risking a scratch on those Manolos. The double-soled flats are available in leather, corduroy and cable knit, and range from charcoal to hot pink (part of the Luxe collection, $40-$58 exclusive to Neiman Marcus). The Sporto collection, which can be found at Macy’s online ($25-$40), sports flashy snakeskin and leopard prints, but also carries basics for a more subtle approach. Added convenience: These foldable ballet flats come with a zip pouch that converts into a larger carrying tote for storing stilettos, wedges, or whatever high heels you desire. Founded by young NYC-based duo, Katie Shea and Susie Levitt, CitySlips are a must for fashionistas on-the-go.
French Blue has opened in the old Vanderbilt Building in downtown St. Helena in Napa Valley.
The restaurant takes its name from the blue front doors which have graced the building’s entrance for over 50 years. The space comprises a large open kitchen with a wood burning oven and grill, two fireplaces, a communal table in the center and outdoor seating. Managing Partner Stanley Morris brings more than 30 years of hospitality experience to French Blue, including his years at Teatro ZinZanni in San Francisco, which he helped establish in 2001. Philip Wang is executive chef, showcasing local foods sourced largely from nearby Rudd Farms on Mt. Veeder and at Edge Hill Vineyards, with fresh baked goods crafted by Noe Valley Bakery owner, Michael Gassen. Nearly everything is housemade, from the bread to the honey and jams. The menu, which offers items like fennel cured salmon sandwich with cucumber, breakfast radish and whole grain Struan or grass-fed hanger steak with English peas, heirloom carrots and soft herb chimicurri is offered seven days a week from 5 p.m. to 11 p.m. French Blue is situated at 1429 Main Street in St. Helena. For more information, visit www.frenchbluenapa.com or call 707-968-9200.
Passengers flying into London’s Heathrow have some new luxe options. Heathrow by Invitation is a bespoke service that helps VIPs traveling through the airport avoid crowds and queues. Guests can get a private curbside drop-off and pickup point and exclusive terminal entrance; a private suite where VIP hosts can help with check-in and any necessary paperwork, luggage drop-off, customs and passport control; a dedicated private security search area; a limousine service to or from their private suite directly to the plane steps (no waiting in line to board); and further transport by limo or helicopter as needed. Most notably, Heathrow by Invitation guests can use dedicated suites at Terminal 5 that were formerly reserved for royalty, heads of state and visiting diplomats. Amenities in the lounge include snacks and drinks (Tip: Full catering can be arranged with 24 hours’ notice); TV and Wi-Fi; and meeting facilities for up to six additional people—whether or not they are traveling, making the space ideal for quick meetings during a layover. All of the necessary paperwork for departures or arrivals can be handled in the suite, making the procedures much less procedural. Heathrow by Invitation can also arrange for private shoppers to help guide guests through the airport’s stores (think Tiffany, Mont Blanc, Bulgari, Gucci and even Harrods—and those are just in Terminal 5) or to pick up last-minute items while guests unwind in their lounges. Speaking of lounges, Terminal 3 has the No. 1 Traveller’s Flagship lounge, which opened last year. In addition to the usual perks (a bistro restaurant and bar, a game room, a family room, a spa with treatments from 15 minutes to two hours), the lounge also has private bedrooms for longer layovers.