The Michelin Guide announced, this week, the list of restaurants receiving stars for 2019. And the Farmhouse team was proud and honored to remain among that elite list for the 13thconsecutive year. Says Executive Chef, Steve Litke, “to be one of only 90 restaurants to receive one or more stars, out of 657 that are recommended in the state of California makes me so incredibly proud of my entire team. Every year that we receive our star is just as exciting and nail-biting as it was the very first year”.
For anyone new to the system, one star means “high-quality cooking, worth a stop,” two stars equals “excellent cooking, worth a detour” and three stars means a restaurant has “exceptional cuisine and is worth a special journey.”
When Farmhouse owners, Catherine and Joe Bartolomei, conceived the idea of a European- style hotel and world-class restaurant nineteen years ago, it was with the hope that they would achieve one star status. “One star is a perfect spot for us. We are approachable and have flexibility in our offerings, but it recognizes the level of talent that we have in the kitchen. Our team is second to none. And the fact that our Chef has been with us for our entire nineteen years, and is like family, makes it all the sweeter. Congratulations to our entire restaurant team!”
Situated on a serene ten-acre wooded property in Sonoma County’s world-famous Russian River Valley region, Farmhouse Inn combines the hospitality of a family-owned country inn and the amenities of a Four-Diamond luxury boutique hotel to create a casually elegant wine country escape. A charming and romantic property in the emerging and popular destination of the Russian River Valley, Farmhouse Inn celebrates the spirit of wine country by providing guests with an insider’s experience of Sonoma County. The Inn boasts a Michelin- starred restaurant, a full-service farm-to-table spa managed by Francis & Alexander, and picturesque gardens throughout the property. All of Farmhouse Inn’s 25 rooms—including seventeen Barn rooms and suites, eight cottage rooms and suites and two upstairs guest rooms in the original farmhouse—offer relaxing, scenic views with an unparalleled luxury experience.
Awarded in 2019 #3 Hotel in North America, Conde Nast Traveler, #3 Best Hotel in California, Travel & Leisure and Michelin One-Star restaurant 13 years running.
Time to getaway! A jaunt to Eden Roc Miami Beach is the perfect prescription for relaxation. Upon arrival Eden Roc’s lobby will thrust you into an oasis of history. The hotels gently restored golden hand rails lead to sweeping views of the circular bar with signature spirits designed to bring your soul to an immediate rest. The eclectic libations and unique art curation will have you feeling the iconic vibes of legends like Nate King Cole, Sammy Davis Jr. and Frank Sinatra. Consider yourself amongst the elite traveler as this destination will envelop you to a cosmopolitan lifestyle. Famed architect Morris Lapidus breathed life into the Miami skyline with the hotels 415 ocean front rooms. Following a complete multi-million dollar restoration the Eden Roc Miami Beach is prepared to welcome you to a new level of hospitality. Allow your skin to absorb the subterranean ocean breezes and your eyes to dissect the elegantly appointed landscape at this Miami haven for global citizens.
Soaking up the sun can be draining. Who wants a burger? The farm to table cuisine at Malibu Farms is hypnotic. Be sure to order the grass-feed beef burger and Malibu blue nachos your tummy will thank me.
Beach & Spa
With an almost perfect location in the heart of Mid-Beach the Eden Roc is close to South Beach nightlife if you desire dancing and secluded enough for peace of mind. South Beach can be hectic at times so finding a beach chair can be a complete production. Fortunately, the Eden Roc has designated space for all hotel guest making it seamless to soak up the sun rays. Following your sun session follow in my foot steps and dash to the Esencia Wellness Spa. I paired the H2O facial and ocean glow body scrub to restore my skins natural exuberance.
Bed & Balcony
I’ve never slept so well in my life. I must admit I am literally in love with this property. The positioning of the hotel bed looking beyond the balcony toward the Atlantic Ocean was mesmerizing. The gravitational pull of the mattress lead me into siren slumbers. Beyond the bed the suites balcony made for the perfect office backdrop. Creative floods poured as my mind was free and fueled by aesthetically pleasing scenery.
Dinner fit for a king or queen is an understatement. Nobu is synonymous with great Japanese cuisine. Of course, my elevated Omakase dining experience was obnoxiously insane. Highest of accolades for this moment I was riddled with delightful morsels and you will be too.
Art Lovers prepare to stroll the grounds at Eden Roc Miami Beach. The hotel is filled with color and mediums to inspire and educate you alike. From lobby to suites you can feel the artistic influence of the hotels partnerships with the Brant Foundation and Art Angels.
Getaneh Molla of Ethiopia and Kenya’s Ruth Chepngetich won the 20th edition of the Standard Chartered Dubai Marathon today (Jan 25) with both athletes producing spectacular course records that rank among the fastest times in the history of marathon running.
In excellent weather conditions, Ethiopian Molla clocked 2:03:34, achieving the first sub-2:04 time in Dubai. He improved the former course record – set in 2018 – by 26 seconds and became the sixth fastest marathon runner ever. It is also an unofficial world debut record by the 25-year-old.
Second-placed Herpassa Negasa also ran sub-2:04 with 2:03:40, making him the eighth fastest of all time, while Asefa Mengstu completed an all-Ethiopian podium with 2:04:24 for third place. In a stunning women’s race, Kenya’s Chepngetich achieved the third fastest time in history with 2:17:08. Only Britain’s world record holder Paula Radcliffe and Kenya’s Mary Keitany have ever run faster as the 24-year-old smashed the course record by more than two minutes.
Underlining the quality of the field, Worknesh Degefa – the winner in Dubai in 2017 – broke the Ethiopian record by 15 seconds to become the fourth fastest runner ever in 2:17:41. Her compatriot Worknesh Edesa took third in 2:21:05.
Held under the patronage of HH Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai, and under the aegis of the Dubai Sports Council, the event once again underlined its status as a world-class IAAF Gold Label Marathon.
Molla smashing the course record on his marathon debut and Chepngetich’s duel with Degefa were the undoubted highlights. The Kenyan was having problems identifying her drinks’ bottles at feed stations, and regularly fell behind, which may have cost her the Kenyan/African record held by colleague Mary Keitany, the second fastest in history with 2.17.01.
Molla said he did not know what to expect from his first marathon. “I certainly didn’t expect to run 2.03,” said the new champion. “I was hoping for maybe 2.05 or 2.06 so this is a great win for me.”
While the spoils were shared between Kenya and Ethiopia in the elite Marathon, in the wheelchair category, there was a Swiss double with Marcel Hug and Sandra Graf winning in 1h:24m:09s and 1h:41m:03s respectively before the trophies were presented by His Highness Sheikh Mansour bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Dubai Sports Council Deputy Chairman Mattar Al Tayer and Standard Chartered UAE CEO Rola Abu Manneh.
As usual, more than 20,000 runners also took part in the associated 10km Road Race and 4km Fun Run as the Middle East’s biggest mass participation sporting event celebrated is 20th birthday in style. The event was streamed live with no rights restrictions and is available to watch on repeat at bit.ly/2019DubaiMarathon_Live.
In addition to Standard Chartered as title sponsor, the Dubai Marathon was supported by the Dubai Sports Council, adidas, Dubai Eye 103.8FM, Aquafina and Gatorade, Dubai Holding, Dubai Municipality, Dubai Police and the RTA.
Livestream of 20th Standard Chartered Dubai Marathon on Friday, January 25th!
The first time in the event’s history, the Middle East’s IAAF Gold Label race will be available worldwide as a live stream with NO geo-blocking or rights restrictions.
The live feed will also be embedded on a number of leading social media platforms, specialising in running, as well as on the official Standard Chartered Dubai Marathon website and on its newly-created YouTube channel bit.ly/DubaiMarathon2019_LIVE, which is open for subscription.
The three-hour world feed will get underway in time for the start of the elite marathon at 6am (GMT02.00) with a sixteen camera production and full race graphics. There will also be other features and stories highlighted throughout the race including interviews with elite athletes, organisers, sponsors and the more unusual runners with colourful stories to tell.
Bringing all the action as it unfolds throughout the morning will be British running legend Paula Radcliffe, the current Women’s Marathon World Record Holder, and international author and award-winning athletics correspondent Pat Butcher.
E.C.D. AUTOMOTIVE DESIGN UNVEILS 150th VEHICLE, AN ULTIMATE VEHICLE CONCEPT HONORED AS MOST INNOVATIVE AND POWERFUL EVER FROM E.C.D.
E.C.D. Automotive Design (E.C.D.), known for building award-winning custom luxury vehicles, rolls out its momentous 150th truck, known as Project Savage. The eye-catching Defender 110 is an Ultimate Vehicle Concept and is celebrated as the company’s most innovative and most powerful vehicle ever built, symbolizing the evolution of the company throughout the years.
The powerhouse behind Project Savage is a Chevrolet LS3 6.2L V8 engine with performance upgrades and a custom ECU tune, boosting it to nearly 600-horsepower, making this brilliant D110 the most powerful vehicle E.C.D. has ever built. Every inch of Project Savage was hand-built to the client’s specifications at E.C.D. Automotive Design’s Rover Dome, their global headquarters located in Kissimmee, Florida.
Finished in a “Super White” full gloss paint with eggshell-black trim and a set of 20-inch six-spoke custom E.C.D. wheels give Project Savage an incredibly aggressive, yet modern look.
Awarded the most innovative vehicle ever built by E.C.D., Project Savage includes advanced systems never used on an E.C.D. vehicle before, including a wireless Warn Industries winch system that allows full use of the winch remotely within a 50-foot radius of the vehicle. Cosmetic innovations include an extended center console reaching the middle-row, providing passengers with modern luxuries such as wireless charging pads for mobile devices, rear climate controls, heated and ventilated seats, and premium sound with ten JL Audio speakers throughout the vehicle.
Project Savage is perfect for urban cruising, yet fully capable of off-road adventures. Every E.C.D. vehicle is four-wheel drive; however, Project Savage has been upgraded with front and rear-axel limited slip differentials, a two-inch lift suspension kit from Fox, and a hydro-boost braking system for premium braking power.
“Project Savage sums up the evolution of E.C.D. and what we do best. The fusion of classic and modern – that iconic, rugged look combined with modern performance and technology,” says Tom Humble, founder of E.C.D. Automotive Design.
For additional high-resolution images and 4K video, please visit this link.
Additional Information about Project Savage:
Custom Defender 110
Chevrolet LS3 6.2L 600HP V8, stroker assembly with 6-speed automatic transmission
Color: Super White in a full-gloss finish with an eggshell black roof and wheel spats
Wheels & Tires: 20″ Custom E.C.D. wheels with Toyo Open Country M/T tires
Side Steps: Full Length side steps with black checker plate
Exterior Accessories: Full checker plates set in black, KBX wing tops, steering guard in black
Grille: Black Heritage Edition Anniversary mesh grille
Bumper: Tubular winch bumper with Warn 10s Platinum winch
Safety Device: Full external roll cage with rear ladder
Lights: Two Baja Designs Squadron Sport LED work lights and the Baja Designs OnX6 Dual Control Amber/White LED light bar
Additional: E.C.D. two-way air system with quick release hoses, Borla performance exhaust system with twin tail pipes, tow and wire package, Fox suspension, Land Rover cast alloy station wagon plaque, anodized hardware (nuts and bolts)
Seats: Corbeau RRS seats in the front and middle row and four inward facing jump seats in the load area
Leather color: Supersoft Black leather
Seat Design: Double Diamond stitch
Stitch Color: Scarlet Red
Headliner: Black suede
Carpet: Black luxury pile
Electronics: Wireless charging, 110V outlets in front and rear, USBS on dash, inside center console top, and rear portion of extended console area
Steering Wheel: Momo Quark
Gauges: All American series
Additional: Rear AC, two additional cup holders, Flame Red seatbelts, Metal interior components (handles, lock pins and cups)
About E.C.D. Automotive Design
E.C.D. Automotive Design (E.C.D.) is an award-winning creator of prestigious, high-end luxury vehicles that combines classic English beauty with innovation and modern luxury. Each vehicle produced by E.C.D. is the true epitome of unique; a one-off that is entirely designed by the client through our immersive “Luxury Design Experience” and hand-built from the ground up in 2,200 hours by our master-certified ASE craftsmen. The company was founded in 2013 by three British “petrol heads” whose passion for classic vehicles is the driving force behind our exceptionally high standards for quality, custom luxury vehicles. Global headquarters, known as the “Rover Dome,” is a 35,000 square-foot facility located in Kissimmee, Florida that produces 40 vehicles annually and is home to 52 of the most talented employees. E.C.D. Automotive Design has a second design studio located in Malibu, California.
This Alpine White D90 Edition is an entity perfectly in sync with its surroundings. The Elite Sports seats and classic Boost alloys shod with BFGoodrich tyres give this Defender an essence of agility and finesse. The look is completed with a wood rimmed steering wheel and lithe Fawn leather interior. A soft-top style Defender creates fluidity between driver and terrain; take the top down and become completely immersed in the landscape.
1) Interior: Gloss Black Boost 16″ alloys | BFGoodrich KO2 tyres | KBX® Signature Satin Black grille with Alpine White mesh | A-bar with twin LED spotlights | Puma bonnet | Gloss Black KBX wing-top vents, side air intake and chequer plate | Alpine White Fire & Ice side steps | Black XS Soft-top kit with heavy duty cage | Raptor-coated steering & front differential guard | Alpine white NAS rear step
2) Exterior: Fawn leather trim| Heated Elite Sports front seats| Lockbox with USB powerpoint| Matching leather door cards| 4 tip seats in load area| Black alloy gear knobs and door furniture| Evander 15″ wood rimmed steering wheel|Pioneer® premium sound system with Apple® CarPlay and reversing camera display| Ice White LED lighting package| Air conditioning
If you fancy winning your own D90 soft-top this month is the time to make that dream a reality. Place your deposit with Arkonik this month and you will also receive a massive $10,000 deposit contribution!
Arkonik are back with another Summer Promotion, and this time it’s big.
For the first time ever, Arkonik is giving away a Defender 90 soft-top (worth over $130k) to one client to accompany their custom order upon delivery. So if you’ve been thinking about creating your perfect custom Defender, now is the time to make that dream a reality.
The first 30 people to make a 25% deposit between 1st July – 30th September 2018 will be entered into a competition to win a unique D90 curated by the team at Arkonik HQ. As an added incentive, place your deposit this month (July 2018 only) and you will also receive a $10,000 deposit contribution.
Arkonik are Land Rover Defender specialists based in the heart of England, exporting to the USA and Canada since 2007. They are collaborating with carefully selected partners to create a one of a kind Defender in a dazzling shade of Firesand Orange offset with an Exmoor Trim black canvas soft-top. Externally the edition will feature KBX wing-top vents and Sawtooth alloy wheels supplied by BEARMACH shod with BFGoodrich AT tyres. Internally this stunning truck will feature black leather with orange stitch seating, matching door cards and Arkon X steering wheel by Exmoor Trim. This premium interior will also include black aluminium gear knobs and door furniture as well as one of Exmoor Trim’s new Lock Boxes.*
In light of the Equifax, Yahoo and NFL cyber attacks, the importance of cyber security is more evident than ever. But what can cyber firms do to keep innovating and stay ahead of attacks?
According to Rubica, the answer is diversity. A full-service cyber security firm whose client roster includes celebrities, start-up founders, bankers and other wealthy elite, Rubica understands the need to stay ahead of the curve.
Chief Operating Officer Frances Dewing, a Washington State attorney with years of experience in the cyber security and security industries, knows that since Rubica is at the cutting edge of cyber security, they have to innovate constantly and think outside the box.
Below, Frances explains how diversity plays a part in the company’s growth:
If Rubica isn’t creatively solving problems, they’re always going to be behind in terms of cyber criminals
Diversity is an imperative for innovation – in offering unique perspectives, challenging status quo, and expanding problem solving in new dimensions
The very institution of the tech industry has a lack of diversity built-in; and if companies don’t intentionally look for that and challenge it, the problem won’t be fixed
Rubica looks at a number of factors when hiring, from skills, experience and collaborative abilities, but one of the core aspects desirable in candidates is adding a diverse perspective to the team.
In a time when cyber criminals are constantly coming up with new ways to attack and hide from the authorities, a fresh point of view is necessary for cyber security firms.
Frances Dewing runs Rubica’s core operations teams, including cyber operations, customer support, finance, legal and human resources. Formerly COO of Concentric Advisors, a consultancy specializing in cyber and physical security for some of the world’s most high-profile figures, Frances was instrumental in building Concentric’s business in Seattle and Silicon Valley. Frances is a Washington State attorney with a JD from the University of Washington.
Born in West Charlotte, North Carolina, Luther “Lute” Nicholson’s hip-hop awakening happened at 7 years old. His older brother was heading off to basic training in the Army and entrusted him to look after his prized CD collection. A budding visual artist who spent all his free time drawing and doodling, young Lute had no interest in his big bro’s stash, but one day, curiosity got the best of him.
The year was 1996, and things were rapidly changing in the historically Black Beatties Ford neighborhood where Lute grew up. From the drugs being sold on the corners to the escalating police violence, the reality of his surroundings was becoming too much to bear. Hip-hop somehow helped the youngster make sense of it all.
Lute was 13 when he decided to try his hand at writing some raps. Coaxed into it by his friends Jimmy Kelso and Allan whose older brother was already a popular rapper in high school, the entering freshmen created a crew of their own. “Early on, I was terrible,” he admits, “But the more I did it, the more I really liked this second outlet I had to express myself in ways that I couldn’t through art.”
The trio practiced religiously; rhyming over instrumentals they downloaded from the J. Armz How To Be An MC series. They eventually recorded their first mixtape, burned a bunch of CDs and distributed them to their friends. “Everybody was feeling it,” says Lute. “We liked the recognition we were getting at school but at the time we weren’t thinking anything bigger than that.”
It wasn’t until near the end of 12th grade that he began to take things more seriously. Kicked out of school for insubordination and struggling to complete his GED at a local community college, the misunderstood 17-year-old had no choice but to grow up quick. He opted to put his faith in his expanding skills and instead of hitting the books, focused on elevating his lyrical content and flow.
In 2010, he met up with fellow microphone fiend, SchylerChaise, and discussed forming a Voltron-like collective of likeminded MCs who would support one another on the come up. Lute brought in his old pal Jimmy Kelso and SchylerChaise invited his buddy High I’m Ry. Together they became Forever FC.
“It was a brotherhood,” Lute explains. “We were all independent artists working on our own projects but we had each other’s backs.” The four-man squad made enough noise during their five-year tenure to grace the cover of Creative Loafing Charlotte and garner national coverage from The Fader, Complex and The Source magazines.
In the midst, Lute dropped his first solo mixtape, West 1996, in early 2012. Recorded in a basement over beats he found on YouTube, the critically acclaimed project swiftly caught the attention of legendary hip-hop producer, Pete Rock, who retweeted it to his followers, and North Carolina rap star J. Cole, who tracked him down after discovering the tape on 2DopeBoyz.com.
“I named the project West 1996 because I’m from the west and I fell in love with hip-hop in 1996,” Lute reveals. “I recreated the Nas cover because I felt like this was gonna be my ’hood’s Illmatic. My perspective was just talking about growing up and the music I loved. I didn’t expect anything from it, but all of a sudden, out of nowhere, it blew up.”
Retweets and likes weren’t paying the bills, though. And with a baby on the way, Lute went underground, taking a menial job at the airport fueling planes to make ends meet. Almost three years went by before fans heard from the promising young rapper again. But when he finally resurfaced, he had the long-awaited follow-up to his debut in hand and ready to go.
“Everybody was asking where the music was so I decided to give people an idea of what I’d been going through the last few years,” he says. “I had a lot of things to write about and started creating songs on the job. I had also decided that this was gonna be my last project ever, so I went all out and poured my heart into it.”
Lute sent raw copies of West 1996 Pt. II to a few of his closest peeps and associates, including Dreamville filmmaker Scott Lazer, who passed it along to the boss. The night before the release date, Lute got a text from J. Cole saying he’d heard and loved the album and wanted to help take it to another level. The two spoke, and much to the dismay of his fans, Lute ended up holding the project.
That summer, J. Cole invited the talented wordsmith to join the Forest Hills Drive Tour for a couple of weeks “to see how things work” behind the scenes. His Dilla-produced head nodder, “Still Slummin’,” was included on the Revenge Of The Dreamers II Dreamville compilation, and by the end of 2015, it was announced that Lute was officially on Dreamville Records.
Although West 1996 Pt. II was already finished when Lute got signed, it was riddled with delays due to sample clearance issues. So the artist went back to the drawing board, tweaking song structures, swapping out instrumentals and redoing hooks to make it feel fresh. “It’s come a long way,” he remarks.
The contemporary throwback album features soulful production contributions from GRAMMY-winner Cam O’bi (“Ford’s Prayer” and “Premonition” feat. Earthgang), alongside Shiggy (“Home” feat. Elevator Jay and “Git Up’ feat. GQ), Elite (“Ambitions”) and Save Allen (“Morning Shift“, “Crabs In A Barrel“ and “Livin’ Life” feat. High I’m Ry). The single “Juggin’,” also produced by Save Allen, serves as a metaphor for how the artist has approached his 28 years on the planet.
“It’s about finessing your way through life,” explains Lute. “My mom was always the one always telling me to watch my circle, don’t get involved with the wrong crowd, and do things the right way,” he recounts. “Meanwhile my dad was like, ‘forget that, you gotta get out there to figure out how life works.’ I’ve always just tried to find that balance.”
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