Monthly Archives: June 2012

My friend, Erica, has written a more in-depth post on Huffington Post about Rome based apps.  I’m writing about my top three.

I receive a lot of e-mails asking me where to eat in Rome.  I love to cook and have my favorite restaurants, but I’m by no means an expert.  Instead, I suggest people buy apps by Gillian McGuire, Katie Parla and Elizabeth Minchilli.  I’ve asked them why they decided to create their apps (which is a lot of work).  Thanks for responding, ladies!

Why buy an app?  For one, they are updated frequently.  Some guidebooks become outdated the moment they are published.  Also, these apps are written by people who really know this city.  They live here.  They see the vendors they write about, know the chef/cooks at the restaurants, and capture the city in a way that someone on short term assignment cannot do.

I think they are an invaluable resource.  There are a lot of restaurants, gelato places, coffee shops, etc. here and yes, it is possible to have a bad meal in Rome. With these apps, the chances of that happening are greatly reduced.

EAT ROME by Elizabeth Helman Minchilli.  When Elizabeth was twelve her family moved to Rome.  She returned for good while studying in Florence for her dissertation.  Elizabeth has written books on design and has been writing about food, design, and travel for various publications for twenty years.  One of my favorite features of her app is the comment section. It’s great to read everyone’s experiences at various restaurants.   Elizabeth does respond to feedback which helps keep the app up to date.

“I’m a big believer in embracing all of the technical innovations that are happening in publishing. While I’ve always been happy to write for magazines, newspapers and book publishers (and continue to do so) I love the possibility that blogs and apps present. They give me not only much more control over the content, but allow exciting and extremely helpful direct contact with my readers.”

ROME FOR FOODIES by Katie Parla.   Katie grew up in the Garden State (aka New Jersey).  She started working in restaurants from a young age and moved to Rome in 2003 after graduating from college. Since her move, Katie has earned a sommelier certificate (FISAR) and an MA in the Cultura Gastronomica Italiana (Universita’ degli Studi di Roma “Tor Vergata”). Katie has has written several guide books and writes about food and travel for a number of publications. The Katie’s Picks section is great.  She has a very specific POV when it comes to food and doesn’t hold back her opinions.

“I decided to develop and app for a few reasons. I wanted to experiment with new media, find a new way to connect with readers, and monetize blog content. I had the app re-developed in order to introduce concepts of branding and improve user interface.”

ROME FOR EXPATS by Gillian McGuire.  Gillian has lived in Rome for seven years.  Prior to her move, she and her family lived in several African countries.  Her expats friends call her “The Source” for a reason.   I’ve included an expat app because there are people who travel to Rome and rent apartments and/or stay for an extended period.  If you need to know where to find an English speaking dentist, or a hairdresser, cilantro, or maybe you’re dying for a bagel, or looking for a personal trainer (to help burn off that bagel), this is the app for you.

“First, I love an assignment, so I found I was often asked the question “where can I find… x?

And second, in my seven years of living in Rome I had compiled quite a list. I partnered with the Sutro Media team and created Rome for Expats as an easy to access resource of all of that information”
Buon eating!

I’m in shock.  Nobody outside her immediate family knew she was even ill.   Here’s a link to the ABC News breaking report about her death.

While she may be better known for her films, Nora was also a very witty journalist/novelist.  Her book “I Feel Bad About My Neck” is hilarious.

Nora and her words will be truly missed.

The weather is glorious today in Rome.  It’s sunny, not too hot, and there’s a nice breeze.  It’s very Caribbean-ish.

Thus, I felt the need to buy some mangoes and to play some salsa.

I listened to a lot of salsa when I was younger.  My dad loved it. One of my former babysitters (when we lived in NYC) was from Puerto Rico and would play salsa all the time.

In the mid ’70s my family moved to the ‘burbs where nobody was listening to salsa.  Everyone was into Led Zeppelin.

Led made it into my rotation, but I never stopped loving salsa.  I don’t speak a word of Spanish.

One of my American friends asked me how I could listen to “foreign” music.  I don’t even know what that freaking means.

I heard this track for the first time on, Mega 97.9, a Spanish language radio station in NYC and immediately tracked down the CD (that cover is quite bright).

“El Amor Nunca Pregunta” is one of my favorite songs.  I cannot not dance when I hear it.  I do sing along and it’s tragic… good thing I live alone.

Buon weekend a tutti!

There’s some great news here at AGD.  Thanks to a referral, I have recently signed a new client.

I won’t be posting any photos of her as she’s not on Twitter and doesn’t have a blog.

My client’s main goals are to update her work wardrobe and to buy several pieces for upcoming events. The challenge will be to find clothes that are stylish, yet appropriate for a conservative work environment.

I believe American women in their 50’s, and up, can look current without trying to dress as if they are still in their 20’s. The other extreme isn’t great either.

We will be focusing on stylish classics that can go from work to dinner.   My client looks great in black, white, and red.  She also wants to add more color to her wardrobe.

The DVF dress below would be perfect for my client.  She’s petite with a runner’s frame.  A change of accessories could easily take this dress from the workplace to drinks and/or dinner.

I’ve pulled other images for inspiration.  That board is HERE.

A classic wrap dress from DVF.

Victoria Hagan is one of the most respected interior designers in America.  Since founding her firm 20 years ago, Ms. Hagan has built a reputation for designing classic yet modern spaces.

Victoria Hagan Interior Portraits
All photos:


I love her work and couldn’t wait to read her book.

I highly recommend it.

Ms. Hagan’s book showcases three portfolios, Waterside, City, and Country.  Of course, I was drawn immediately to the Waterside chapters.  Speechless.

Gorgeous living room in Nantucket

I think “Stylish Simplicity” when I study Ms. Hagan’s work.  Her use of strong silhouettes and interesting textures is inspiring.  I also like how she mixes pieces from different eras, yet the spaces are cohesive.

These homes look like places people actually live in, not like a showroom or a museum.

Columbus Circle, New York City.


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