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Casa Joshua Tree

Joshua Tree National Park has become increasingly popular over the years. This desert hideout is Palm Springs’ more rugged, outdoorsy sibling. Where Palm Springs has hotel pools and a nightlife for the weekenders, Joshua Tree has rock climbing and thrifting. This desert getaway is worth the drive, even on a holiday weekend.


Casa Joshua Tree –  This is where we stayed this weekend. I loved all of the stylish details, all of which helped create an Instgramable moment. It’s located close to downtown and the park. When we finally got the fireplace going, it was nice to enjoy a real wood fire, which is always a treat. The outdoor swing was the perfect place to take in the sunrise wrapped in a cozy blanket.

Casa Joshua Tree

Joshua Tree House – Owned by a husband and wife design team, the Joshua Tree House offers three different homes to rent. Each one is carefully curated for a relaxing and stylish stay. They get booked months in advance, so it’s best to plan your trip early if you want to stay here. I have to mark my cal for sometime in June so I can stay at the Joshua Tree House and enjoy the indoor chair swing and hot tub under the stars.


Joshua Tree National Park – The park has tons of trails for hikers of all levels. Many of the trails lead to old gold mines and ruins, from the time when the land was run by homesteaders. It’s also nice to drive through the park and enjoy the desert views, rock formations, and check out the extreme climbers. Be sure to take in plenty of water and food because there aren’t any places to buy goods once you get into the park. This is especially important if you’re camping.

Joshua Tree

Pioneertown – Located twelve miles west of Joshua Tree, Pioneertown is a real town that was originally built as a film set. Built in 1946, when Westerns were popular, the  founders saw this as a town you would find in the Old West, with the facades of a bank, jail, and general store, but inside there would be modern day stores. And that’s exactly how it is now, although I do think that there can be more shops to draw in tourists.



Hoof and the Horn – I found a cute dress here that I can’t wait to wear. It’s the place to go if you’re looking to get that boho desert vibe. They sell new and vintage clothes and accessories for men and women, as well as a few home goods. My friend got some cool knit throw pillows.

Pioneer Crossing Antiques – This antique shop has reasonable prices and an eclectic mix of antiques and desert inspired goods. There aren’t a lot of clothes, which is usually what I look for, so head to the next place on the list if that’s what you’re into.

Shopping in Joshua Tree

Funky and Darn Near New – The name says it all. This vintage shop has some funky clothes, that could possibly pass as costume. The pieces are unique and some are out right wacky. The prices are reasonable, especially compared to LA.

Joshua Tree National Park

Note: Depending on what type of trip you would like, you can also camp in the park.

Every year I make a travel bucket list of places that I would like to go and cities that I’m already planning on visiting. My list this year is longer than it has ever been. But that’s because I’m already planning on going to these place or it’s highly possible that I will be going. There’s only one destination that’s out of the country.

Sedona, Arizona – I’ve been talking a lot with friends and family about planning a trip to Sedona and staying at Mii Amo resort. We would hike through the red rocks and enjoy healing spa treatments. It’s more than just facials and massages too. The treatments on the top of my list are astrology and aura-soma reading.


Park City, Utah – This month I’m planning my first trip to Park City for the Sundance Film Festival. I’ve been talking about it for a few month now, and hoping to pull the trigger soon. I used to work for film festivals and love the excitement of the movies, parties, and festival goers.

Nashville, Tennessee – This was on my list two years ago and I’m adding it back. There’s a resort-like destination near the Great Smoky Mountains, that I have my eye on. I loved visiting the national park on the North Carolina side, and now I want to see it from the other side of the mountain range.


Lake Tahoe, CA – I’m actually surprised that I have yet to make a trip to Lake Tahoe. Lately, my Instagram feed has been blowing up with pictures from the snowy destination town. I’m still on the fence about visiting in the winter, but it does look beautiful.

Joshua Tree, CA – It’s so close I can really choose any weekend to go. It’s the perfect weekend getaway, relaxing, secluded, beautiful, and inspiring. There are tons of cute places on Airbnb to rent, plus vintage shops and boutiques to explore before hiking the national park.


India – I’m not really sure where in India I want to go, yet. There are a few cities on my list, but what I’m really looking for is a yoga ashram. I still need to do some research and ask for suggestions, but my goal is to go right after I graduate from AFI.


Lake Arrowhead, CA – For years my Mom has told me about how much she loves going to Lake Arrowhead, but I have yet to go. It looks so beautiful in the summertime when everyone is out on the lake. I would love to go for the 4th of July for an all-American weekend.

Lake Arrowhead-CA

Note: I was recently inspired to get out of LA once a month. Going to see if I can do it. Although, I go to Santa Barbara so much, I’m not sure if that really counts.

Cambria coastline

A few weeks ago I decided to take a spontaneous road trip to Cambria. The end of October is one of the best times to visit Cambria to see the elephant seals lounging on the beach, which solidified my decision to go there. The other popular times for elephant seal watching is end of February and in May, but Cambria is beautiful all year round.


Cambria Beach Lodge – I loved everything about my stay at Cambria Beach Lodge. It’s located across from Moonstone Beach and the picturesque boardwalk that lines the oceanfront. Each room has a modern beachy feel, supplied with a cozy wool blanket, tasty snacks, wine, and the surf report written on a chalkboard hanging on the wall. I loved watching the sunset from the front patio and waking up to a tasty breakfast in the lobby with ocean views.

Cambria Beach LodgeCambria Beach Lodge


Moonstone Beach – Moonstone Beach is the famous beach that lines the Cambria coastline. There’s a picturesque one-mile wood plank boardwalk that lines the coast and this popular surf spot. I caught the boardwalk in front of the hotel and walked along the beach and into the forrest area until it ended, before ending up in town. Moonstone Beach doesn’t have many shells, but there’s lots of beautiful drift wood to collect.

Cambria Moonstone Beach

Hearst Castle – When I was young we spent many family vacations driving up the coast and stopping at Hearst Castle. The legendary estate was inherited by William Randolph Hearst in 1919. He then developed it into what it is today and purchased more land around the stately home, and in Cambria. In the 1920s Hearst started one of the first print media companies and was a major producer of movie newsreels. Some of these historic newsreels can be viewed during a tour of Hearst Castle.

Hearst Castle

Elephant Seals – From Hearst Castle, drive a few miles north up Highway 1 until you see signs for elephant seal viewing. This enclave is one of the best places to watch the elephant seals. There’s a secluded fenced area perched on top of the cliff not far from the sand, where you can witness nature at its finest. The seals lounge, bark, swim, and roll in the sand. It’s like an episode on National Geographic IRL.

elephant seals CambriaSan Simeon elephant seals


Home Arts – This quaint shop is filled with beachy home decor, chic furniture, and children’s finds. There’s a little bit of everything and so many things that I wanted. I walked out with a cozy poncho sweater and a brass buck, which is now on my desk.

Cambria Shopping

Linn’s – So it’s not what you normally think of when you hear shop; it’s a pie shop. Linn’s is known for their olallieberry pies and it’s a tasty must buy. All of the pies are made in house and olallieberries are pretty famous in Cambria. It’s like going to Napa and not tasting the wine. You need to taste something with olallieberries and I would suggest the pie.

Note: I’m already planning my next weekend getaway. Big Sur, Joshua Tree, Palm Springs, and San Diego are topping the list right now.



Hotel Erwin – Hotel Erwin has some of the best views of the coast in Venice, and is located just steps away from the ocean and famous boardwalk. Locals and tourists enjoy sunset cocktails on the roof. One of the best sunsets I’ve ever seen was on the roof at Hotel Erwin.

Venice Beach House – For something less hipster and more California beach house chic, book a room at this quaint inn. The home was built in 1911 by Venice Beach developer Abbot Kinney. The house fit perfectly in his romantic concept of Venice in America.

Venice Beach, Natalie Zimmerman, Shopping


Venice Canals – One of my favorite things to do in Venice Beach is walk the canals. It’s peaceful and relaxing, makes for some cute pictures, and you can check out all of the different houses along the way. The man-made canals were built in 1905 by developer Abbot Kinney, but since then a lot of the canals have been drained and turned into sidewalks.

Venice Boardwalk – Muscle Beach and the boardwalk are often times what people think of when they hear beaches in Los Angeles. The boardwalk stretches about a half mile along the sand. From here you can look out over the Pacific Ocean and watch the surfers and boats roll by. Shops, restaurants, street art and artists, all make up the famed boardwalk.

Venice Beach Boardwalk

Abbot Kinney Boulevard – This upscale shopping district is a nice place to get away from the crowds down by the beach. There are lots of boutique shops, restaurants, and bars. There are too many to list, so make it a destination and check them all out. It’s one of my favorite shopping destinations in LA.


Late Sunday Afternoon – It feels like you’re walking into someone’s home when you step into Late Sunday Afternoon. It’s located on the trendy strip of Lincoln Blvd in Venice, where new restaurants and shops are popping up all the time. The company works with dead-stock fabrics from downtown LA to make scarves, ascots, pocket squares, and more. They also sell unique gifts from other creatives, which makes up their small local shop and factory.


Christy Dawn – Christy Dawn, the founder and designer, uses deadstock fabric for all of her vintage inspired designs. Her classic looks are made by artisans in downtown Los Angeles. In order to minimize their carbon footprint, Christy Dawn uses deadstock fabric and sews a limited number of pieces, numbering each one that is made.

LCD – The high end boutique focuses on supporting new up-and-coming designers and emerging their customers in these designs. They also work with new jewelry designers, photographers, and artists. This is a location for all fashion and art lovers.

Strange Invisible Perfumes – Although it’s sold internationally and online, the best place to shop for these perfumes is at the flagship store on Abbot Kinney. The owner developed the brand to make high-end perfumes from authentic botanical essences. All of the natural fragrances are bottled in Venice.

Note: Fist three photos by Abigail Collins.


This weekend I spent some time in Ojai with my best friend and family. I’ve posted about Ojai before {here and here}, and wanted to share some more finds I’ve discovered.  There are still so many restaurants and places I want to go back and checkout. It makes it easy to go up there when I love seeing my family there too.

My friend and I started the morning early at Meditation Mount. I definitely suggest going to the 8:30-9:00am meditation class. It’s held every morning the center is open, which is Wednesday through Sunday. This not only sets your day spreading peace and calming your mind, but it’s the best thing about the center, besides the view. After the meditation, take a very short walk to the end of the path to enjoy the view.


We then made our way to some estate sales and stopped to have breakfast at The Framer and the Cook. This organic restaurant is also a small organic market, where fresh bread is baked daily, and canisters of loose leaf tea can be mixed and matched to create your own blend.

After breakfast we hit up three different thrift stores on the main drag in town. New 2 You was very shopable, which is hard to find in a secondhand store. Next to it is Pink Thrift, my other favorite. The shop smells like essential oils and incense, so your clothes come home smelling like Ojai and not dusty old closet. It makes me not want to wash the clothes I bought.

Weekend in Ojai

We arrived at my cousins’ relaxing ranch-style house later in the afternoon for a swim and to soak up the sun. I felt like a kid again jumping and diving into the pool. That’s the best feeling. After swimming and snacking, we enjoyed a light dinner and good conversation.


Note: Already looking forward to my next weekend in Ojai.