A Savoir Vivre Minute with Peony Lim

Today we are sitting down with Peony Lim, creative and digital consultant, luxury brand ambassador and creative content producer. Peony is known for her flawless skin, sweet attitude and keen eye. Time to get her Savoir Vivre secrets!

Peony LimWhat time do you wake up?

7am most mornings.

What do you have for breakfast?

I like toast with avocado or peanut butter and bananas.

I also have porridge or yoghurt and fruit.

Coffee or tea?

Tea. But I start the day with a hot water and lemon. Then I drink camomile, earl grey or green tea.

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What is your morning routine?

Let the dog out and feed her.

Hot water and Lemon.

Catch up on the news.

Breakfast.

Wash and dress.

Makeup, sometimes doing an Instagram live or GRWM.

Work at my desk or straight out to meetings.

What do you do for exercise?

Mostly mat Pilates and HITT.

What is on your current playlist?

M People and Gabrielle.

Peony Lim

Do you have a beauty routine?

Yes but I also experiment with new things all the time.

Products I don’t tend to swap out ever… Eve Lom cleanser, La Mer Eye Cream, La Prairie Sleep Mask, Estee Advanced Night Repair, Skincueticals Redness Neutraliser.

What is your favorite café?

I find that hard. I like some cafes because they are comfortable even though the foods not the most exciting. Like Aubaine on Brompton Road, Granger and Co Pavillion Road, Daylesford Pimlico. But food wise I always love Ottolenghi and Crumbs and Doilies.

What is your favorite restaurant? 

I don’t think I can choose just one.

Good Earth, great classic Chinese, I like the Brompton Road branch.

Dozo, My fav Japanese. There are a couple in London.

Carluccios, its a chain but I just love there classics like Carbonara for a chilled date night.

Yauatcha, the best dim sum in soho.

Maroush, cant live without this Lebanese 24hrs classic.

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How many emails do you get a day? How many do you respond to?

Oh god thats a bit exposing. Probably 100 or so a day. I reply to about 30 (eek)

What is the last book you read?

Woman Code

What is the last thing you watched on Netflix?

MariKondo

What is your go to homemade meal?

Salad.

What is your drink of choice?

Water.

Peony Lim

What is your biggest vice?

Swearing and bad posture.

What time do you go to bed?

11 if I’m good.

Bedtime ritual?

I try and read before bed and not use my phone. I wash ny face and apply all my lotions and potions, take my vitamins and then try and read and relax.

Peony Lim
What do you do to relax?

I’m obsessed with baths and walking for relaxation. Although I find working out mentally soothing I don’t think its relaxing.

London or Paris?

London – home is where the heart is.

Where would you like to travel to that you have never been?

India, New Zealand, New Orleans…

Beach or mountains?

Beach, I love the sea. It makes me feel like I can breathe. I think a sea view is always the most beautiful to me.

Where is the most special place in the world to you?

Where my loved ones are.

Peony Lim

 

Your Ayurveda Questions answered by my friends at Pukka Tea

You are about to get the real scoop on what this ancient medicinal science called Ayurveda by my friends at Pukka Tea and find out why it is something very very important to me!

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What is Ayurveda and the power of herbs.

Can you briefly describe Ayurveda? And Ayurvedic medicine?

Translated as ‘knowledge of life’, Ayurveda is a holistic Indian philosophy offering a ‘Users Manual’ for how to get the most out of life, by balancing body, mind, senses and spirit. It offers a very simple approach, without being simplistic. Ayurveda sees that we are all quite different and brings you special insight about your health and well-being, informing your choices and decisions that you make every day. For example, did you know that raw food is seen as better for one type of people than others. And that Hot yoga is best for just one of the types? Ayurveda has been practised in India for over 3,000 years – and its wisdom has now spread all over the planet.  It remains one of the world’s most powerful mind-body-spirit health systems. Ayurveda helps us see how our health is connected to everyone and everything around us: our family, our work, our society, and our planet. The Ayurvedic toolbox covers diet, natural remedies, lifestyle practices, rejuvenation and detoxification processes, hands-on therapies, as well as meditation.  But be warned… there are no ‘quick fixes’ as Ayurveda is a way of life rather than a short-term intervention. There are also not many ‘one size fits all’ solutions. For example, not everyone needs breakfast first thing according to Ayurveda!

What does dosha mean?

The Sanskrit term ‘dosha’ is probably the best-known principle of Ayurveda today and forms the cornerstone of its method of diagnosis, prevention and treatment of health issues. Essentially, Ayurveda sees that everything in the world is made up of 5 basic elements which are ether, air, fire, water and earth. Vata is composed of air and ether, Pitta of fire and water and Kapha of water and earth. The three doshas govern all our physical and mental functions- appearance, mental state, memory, digesting elimination, individual likes and dislikes, as well as hinting at which health problems we may be more susceptible too.

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What can our doshas tell us about ourselves?

Good health seems to be such a complicated subject that it is not always easy to know how to achieve this holy grail. The key to unlocking Ayurveda’s self-help find out what your ‘dosha’ or body-mind type is (Vata, Pitta or Kapha). These can be thought of as a particular pattern of energy, or health star sign. The three primary energy patterns in our body, or doshas, are: wind or vata – that is cold, dry and light – is the force that controls our movement, regulates the nervous system, and oversees elimination of waste; fire or pitta – that is hot, wet and combustive – is the force that controls our digestion and metabolism; and water or kapha – that is cold, wet and heavy – is the protective force which governs stability, structure and moisture in our mind and body. Although we’re all born with all three doshas, they come together differently in each one of us, and it is this unique combination that makes us who we are. Typically, every person has one dominant form of dosha that makes up his or her personal Ayurvedic constitution or prakriti. We are all a mix of each of the dosha but one or two will dominate. It takes a little time to discover your dosha and the art of living in harmony with nature. You’ll then be able to know what helps you thrive; what foods to eat, how much sleep you need, what exercises are best for you (including which type of Yoga!) and even how you interact with others in your workplace, relationships and families. Ayurveda offers life-changing insights that will add clarity and colour to your life. For example, Vata types have variable appetite & digestion, and are often attracted to raw vegetables and salads. However, they are balanced by regular meals of warm and nourishing food- think one pot meals such as soups, stews, casseroles, and the Yogi dish of kitchadi.

What plants are used in Ayurveda?

Ayurveda has many ‘hero herbs’, so called because they can each bring so many benefits to body and mind. Triphala is a great example. This ancient Ayurvedic formula combines three fruits- Amlalaki, Bibhitaki and Haritaki, each of which balances one of the doshas so it’s good for everyone. Triphala has long been revered in Ayurvedic traditions as a decongestant for the digestive system and for cleansing the blood, helping to extend the quality and quantity of life. It is even safe enough for children and can help with a wide variety of digestive complaints. Some Ayurvedic doctors in India just used these three fruits in different ways to heal. Modern research tells us it has a high concentration of active polyphenols and tannins, with a strong ant-oxidative effect. Other key herbs include Ashwagandha and Shatavari which are both powerful adaptogens, helping us adapt to the stresses and strains of 21st century living. For the Yogi or Yogini, both Turmeric and Tulsi are especially helpful. Turmeric is become famous all over the globe for its ant-oxidant and anti-inflammatory effect. It can really help with the physical asanas, as well as contributing to a healthy gut biome and rejuvenating the liver, blood and skin. All from one herb! Also known as Tulsi, Holy basil is a sacred herb, celebrated for its inspirational properties. Helping to lift your spirit and clear mental fog, it provides an antidote to the stresses of modern life that can lead to depression, low mood and a lack of ‘mojo’. Studies have shown that Holy Basil decrease levels of key stress hormones, such as corticosterone. It’s also an apoptogenic herb that increases circulation in the brain and can support a meditation practice.  These are some of my favourite herbs that I use in my Ayurveda clinic, but there are so many more helpful herbs that are also on most people’s spice racks- ginger, cinnamon, fennel, cumin, saffron, black pepper- all have powerful health benefits when used regularly, from good organic sources. Ginger has so many benefits, for example, that it is known as ‘the universal medicine’ in Ayurveda. Pukka Herbs is unique in using medicinal grade herbs in all our herbal teas and lattes- so the same herbs used in our supplements also go into the drinks, meaning you get therapeutic benefits from every cup.

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How is Ayurveda connected to Yoga?

They can be thought of as sister sciences, as they have developed together and have repeatedly influenced each other throughout history. Traditionally they were always used together but this has not been the case in the recent West. Yoga’s popularity has grown since it was brought to the West at the end of the 18th century. Ayurveda was left behind but is now catching up! There are some great books on this connection, such as David Frawley’s ‘Yoga and Ayurveda’ and Mukunda Styles ‘Ayurvedic Yoga Therapy’. It is said in Ayurveda that disease is the result of forgetting our true or spiritual nature. Yoga is the science of self-realisation that depends on a body and mind functioning well. Both sciences exist to help people re-connect to their true nature- Ayurveda is the healing side of yoga, and yoga is the spiritual side of Ayurveda. They are two sides of the same coin.

What does it mean when our doshas are out of balance?

It might be helpful to first talk about how we are when the doshas are balanced. Sleep is easy, and we wake naturally feeling refreshed; we have a good appetite, food is easily digested and eliminated with a regular bowel movement before breakfast. We have sparkling eyes, glowing skin, a calm, clear mind and feel cheerful. We have enough energy to work and play, with good immunity.  Ayurveda views that the human body, when healthy, is in harmony, self-perpetuating and self-correcting just as the universe is.  We get unbalanced through diet, emotions, lifestyle, seasonal factors, physical trauma, and toxins. When vata dosha gets out of balance, we are colder and drier than normal so may suffer from bloating, constipation, dry skin, insomnia as well as increased fear and anxiety. Imbalanced Pitta can lead to skin problems and rashes, acid digestion and acute inflammation, as well as feelings of anger and frustration. Too much Kapha in the body can cause a thick, white coating on the tongue, excess mucous, weight gain as well as feeling mentally foggy and slow. Ayurveda advises on the right diet, lifestyle, herbs and treatments to bring each doshas back into balance. To take a simple example, a person with a cold is suffering from congestion and mucous due to excess water and earth elements in their system. To alleviate symptoms they take ginger tea, predominant in the fire element. They would also do well to avoid dairy and cold foods which make congestion worse.

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Can our doshas change over time?

Although we’re all born with all three doshas, they come together differently in each one of us, and it is this unique combination that makes us who we are. Typically, every person has one dominant form of dosha that makes up his or her personal Ayurvedic constitution. This can be thought of as our true nature. However, it can be hard to stay balanced with busy schedules and eating on the go. When the doshas start to get out of balance, health problems start. It can be hard to work out who you really are, from a state of imbalance but Ayurveda is like peeling off the layers of an onion-the more you explore and experience, the better you get to understand your true nature and how to thrive!

Are our doshas related to our DNA?

A great question! The science of genetics is evolving rapidly but broadly our DNA doesn’t change (unless exposed to certain toxins or radiation). Similarly our Prakruti, or true nature doesn’t change. Both our DNA patterns and doshas are set when we are conceived and are determined by factors such as our parents doshas, their mood and the time and place of conception.  However,  our state of imbalance is always changing. What is fascinating is that there have been some studies looking for genomic variations between people who are Vata, Pitta and Kapha doshas.  Scientists have found significant differences between people with different dominant doshas irrespective of their ancestry. Studies like this are helping to confirm that the ancient art of treating people according to their dosha has a genetic basis and is just as relevant today when thinking about more personalized approaches to health and healing.

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A Magical Morning with Hanna Mansson, magical soul and founder of Bliss Studio Paris

Meet Hanna Mansson aka @myfrenchcircus. Hanna is a very sweet Swedish and magical friend that walked into my life, just kind of magically. Let’s find out her magical morning Savoir Vivre.

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Who?

I am a positive person that believes in magic. I have always had a connection to magic. I all started 22 years ago. It was by a man that had been my mentor for 22 and he gave me a book on how to speak to animals. I am very connected to animals and nature – like the little elfs in the forest!! This was my first like AHA oh my god moment. I grew up with a lot of animals around me even and I always felt like they understood me more than humans… After this book I started to read a lot about the mind and the law of attraction …and after that I started really living my life. I know that everything I have in my life day is something I created!!

When you followed your intuition?

You won’t believe this story but… one day I literally broke up with my boyfriend of 11 years, I sold my apartment and all my furniture in Stockholm, I took 2 bags and moved to Paris and I started a new life. I didn’t know anyone here and I didn’t know a word of French, BUT I just knew that it was going to work out. My dream was to have a French boyfriend with a hat and a scarf and a beautiful apartment with two rooms, wooden floors, moulding on the ceiling, a cool job in advertising and from how I saw it, it couldn’t have been more cool. And get this, everything that I wished for it happened. Soon after I realized that I wanted to do something else. And that’s how I got Bliss Studio and to where I am today. Hey!

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Your alarm rings at…

Normally at 8’oclock during the week when I go to work. But on the weekend I don’t put on an alarm. I normally wake up naturally at 9:30 latest. But last weekend I slept 24 hours. This was a special case because I did some energetic healing. When I told my healer I had slept for 24 hours he told me it was totally normal because he changed a lot of stuff inside of me…my body needed to readjust.

What brought you to energy healing?

The healer that I went to is a meditation teacher at Bliss that also does private sessions. I have strong intuitions. I wanted to try a private session because when I speak to him, we really really connect and I just knew that it was really the right thing to do. When I develop myself in a spiritual way, I develop my inner voice and I felt like with him I would be able to develop further.

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What’s your first thought when waking up?

I wake up wondering what is going to happen today!! I wake up excited!!

How do you start the day with good vibes?

First I do my meditation and then I put on music – what makes me happy is music. I can even dance naked to help me wake up before I take my shower. In the morning I like to listen to latino music, or music by one of my DJ friends because it makes me happy to dance in the morning with one of my friend’s music.

Your breakfast?

First I drink a glass of half pressed lemon and water. I do that because I feel like it is really good for my stomach, I feel like I am starting the day by cleaning my body. I also feel like my body wake up with it –like my eyes are waking up and I can even see better!!!! I feel something in my eyes that’s like POOF. As for food, if it’s a big morning, depending on what I have home, but I always always have a banana and fruit with grains and natural yogurt. This is what I do before I go to Bliss. When I get to Bliss, I have a coffee. If I have more time in the morning, I will sit on my sofa and I can drink tea. Tea is for my slow day; coffee is my speed day.

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Your spiritual side?

I meditate everyday normally in the morning and sometimes in the evening too. 20 minutes maybe and I like to follow a voice. I train with Davidji. I like him because his meditations are really easy and he has a lot of a different types of meditations. I like choosing when I wake up what kind of meditation I need for that day, because sometimes I wake up and I have a big day and sometimes when I wake up feeling anxious – so my meditation practice will change. I choose a meditation that feels right for that day.

How you stay fit?

Having as much fun as possible. I don’t restrict myself. I don’t believe that a diet is a good thing. I have never ever been on a diet. I believe that if I am having fun, then everything is fun. Even though I am very spiritual and I have been on my spiritual journey for over 22 years, I have never been a yoga girl. For me yoga is just one way to be spiritual, but it’s not my way. I have tried a lot of sports and I don’t like them. I tried to go to the gym, I have gotten super excited about it… I was like omg I am going to go to the gym and I am going to be really perfect. But after going only like 3 times, I stop going. I dance and I walk a lot. I always take the stairs and I always walk. I read this book the secret of French Skinny Women a couple of years and apparently it is too walk. And when I dance, I dance at home, but I like to go out and dance too. I can go to parties completely sober and dance for 8 hours if the music is good. When I go dancing it’s like a meditation for me. It’s like I am grounding myself and at the same time I am connected to the source and I can use all the alchemy magic in the world.

Your beauty secrets?

Water. I drink a lot of water. And also –it sounds really cliché but if I am happy, feeling good and relaxed I look better. There are two keys for me: sleeping and drinking a lot of water. Also if I eat bad, I feel bad and I think I look bad too. So when I take care of myself everything is more awesome. I use only one beauty product. Before I was buying really expensive stuff. I had really sensitive skin and was always having allergic reactions. And you know, with your skin if you have a reaction, your skin gets red and then you put on concealer to hide it. I don’t think that this is good for the skin. It’s like a bad thing. I have a friend from Morocco that does organic oils and so now this is what I use. They’re called JerraFlore and I only use them. And since I started using these oils, I feel so much better. I feel younger in my skin and I feel shiny. It’s like my skin is cleaner.

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Your perfect morning?

When I have time, I like to do things slowly. I like to be in my little world and just do my stuff. I don’t like to wake up in the morning and have to rush. But of course it’s usually rushed and that’s exciting because a lot of stuff is happening. But if I can choose I wake up slowly. I do the same routine just slower.

Self-love?

I talk to myself about stuff, depending on what I need. For instance, if I am worried about something, I tell myself there is nothing to be worried about. It’s like I am having a discussion with myself. I say, “OK there is nothing to be worried about because what I am worrying about is not real.” I am reading a really interesting book about abundance. The author explains things in a really interesting way. He says that we are all here to play and that everything that happens around us is just an illusion of our mind—like everything that I see and that I create is in my mind. For instance, if I am go around saying I can’t pay my rent, I am going to loose my apartment, my company is going to crash, then you create these kind of things and then they happen. S when these kinds of things come to me I tell myself to stop. I talk myself to make them go away.

Current mantra?

Everything IS fine and how it is supposed to be. I am going through a period in my life that has is really weird. I feel like I have been conquering mountains in my mind. So I tell myself everything is fine. And when I tell myself this, its like the stormy winds on mountains is coming down.

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Savoir Vivre with Marc Grossman, founder of Bob’s Juice and Bakery

On this new episode of Savoir Vivre, we meet founder of Bob’s Juice Shop and Bakery, Marc Grossman. Pioneer entrepreneur of “well-being” in Paris, former student of Harvard University and filmmaker, Marc meets us today to discuss the wellness revolution in Paris and his professional experiences in the field. Marc’s sharp personality and contagious enthusiasm is sure to please.

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Not Marc’s, but Bob’s?

I didn’t want to call it Marc’s. Marc’s is not American enough, and it’s a French first name too, Bob’s sounds more American. I thought a lot about the name for my business, like when choosing the name for a baby.

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Did you always have a healthy lifestyle?

I was born in Manhattan and didn’t necessarily grow up with a “healthy lifestyle,” but I frequented juice bars from a young age. I also spent a lot of time in LA, where juicing and juice bars are just normal, they’re kind of like boulangeries in Paris. When I arrived in Paris, I noticed immediately that these kind of places did not exist, and I realized that I missed them. So I said to myself, there are definitely other people that are looking for juice bars too – I am the person that should do this, it would work. At first, it was just an idea, but it became my fantasy. It finally became a reality when I signed the lease on the space in 2016.

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Was it an immediate success?

I had customers, except I wasn’t making tons of money. But at the same time, I didn’t have huge expenses. A few months after it opened I published a recipe book. I had a bit of press so the timing was right. I was at the right place at the right time.

The first menu?

At first Bob’s was only juices made to order. But I realized very quickly that this offer was too small. So we added salads, muffins, things that go well with juice. Almost immediately there were two offers – “healthy” juices and American pastries. We mixed juices and pastries. It’s not necessarily always healthy, but we have options for everyone.

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Are your bagels homemade?

Now yes, the recipe is in my recipe book. But at the first we bought the bagels from New York, frozen bagels from H&H. I don’t think they exist anymore, or they changed the time. Except I thought it was a shame not to have fresh bagels and I wanted to make them myself.

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Your vision of wellbeing?

I find that there is a big misunderstanding of this term. For me, how is more important than what. But there will always be people that say, “you must do this” or “you must be vegetarian.” And at the end of the day, everyone has their own habits. No, in theory a bagel isn’t healthy, but if you eat a bagel on Sunday and are conscious of it, the bagel can be healthy. There are people that eat a lot of cheese. I can’t eat digest lactose, so cheese isn’t good for me. But for someone else cheese can be good. The experience of the meal is the most important, the vibes too.

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Your wellness routine?

I’m really extreme. Either I’m really healthy, or I’m really unhealthy. Sometimes in the morning I have toast with black tea. But other times I’ll be in a detox phase and I’ll eat completely raw. It’s part of the reason I created Bob’s…sometimes I am looking for detox, sometimes I am looking for pancakes, I like to have these two possibilities. I have a very addictive personality, so I go to extremes naturally. Ironically, today I am detoxing. I have been for the past two days because I’ve been so toxic recently that I had to cut out everything. It wasn’t only food and I wasn’t doing crazy extreme things but I was really stressed out and working way too much. I was obsessed with lots of things. It didn’t do me well to drink 5 coffees per day, to eat tons of sugar and late at night. For me to get out of this spiral I have to cut out everything. So today I am eating lots of fruits and drinking a little coffee. Today I can’t cut out the coffee, but maybe tomorrow.

 

Your best wellbeing tip?

Don’t eat at night. Based on my experience and research, this is the most important thing to follow. Also – fast for 12 hours, aka stop eating at 8pm and then eat breakfast the next day at 8am. Personally, if I am able to not eat at night, I wake up with tons of energy. If I eat late at night, even if it’s just a salad with quinoa, I wake up stressed out because I didn’t sleep well. I’m moody and my problems give me anxiety.

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Your tips for success, while remaining balanced?

I have almost always been characterized as “stressed. I was dyslexic, I changed school 4 times, etc. Honestly, I only started to read when I was 10. It was at this moment that I started to get serious about school. I realized that if I worked hard I would be successful. So I worked like a manic. I was always afraid of missing out on an opportunity, which in my opinion should be avoided at all costs. If you have this attitude, and you work 4 times harder than others, you will succeed. At Harvard, I calmed down a bit because I realized I had made it to “paradise”. But I also realized that in the end, Harvard was not paradise. We are never content with our success. I try to distance myself from this idea because I see that it is a never ending cycle.

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How do you manage your stress?

Haha… Well, last week I got a phone call from my security system at 2am. They told me that someone tried to break into the Bakeshop. When I arrived to the bakery, I saw that someone broke the lock on the door but were not able to get in. At the same time, I realized one of my refrigerators wasn’t working and that apparently there was a new Trump tax, forcing all international businesses to pay a tax on their business, retroactive from the opening. Oh, and that I would have another pretty important tax to pay to my old business partner…there are always problems in life. But I had told one of my clients I would go to her yoga class, the same day. It has been a really long time since I took a yoga class, even though I used to practice everyday. So I said to myself, no matter what these problems are not going to disappear today. I have to go on with my life, and so I went to the yoga class. And it was really great. It was a step in the right direction. I think that’s why I’m now on a detox. I am taking a lot of steps in the right direction. I try and put things into perspective to be less stressed out.

Your addiction?

Today my drug is my work. I work until I’m sick. It’s my power, to work more than everyone else.

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Is well-being, being well power in itself?

Well-being is in fact a power, one that that can be used in two ways. To be physically well, to be beautiful. To be fit. That’s the more attractive part, but what do we do with it? Is it just to nourish our ego? Or is it a way to love others? The ego is very smart; it finds it’s way into every situation. For example, you decide to open a juice bar to be a good citizen, to follow a passion… but in another sense, you know that people are going to look at you and say wow… isn’t he healthy, isn’t he nice. And that makes you feel good! So that’s the problem. There’s no reason to judge people because everyone has an ego.

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The problem with the 21st century?

In this day and age, we need to share, we don’t have a choice. Back when I opened Bob’s yes we had a website, but it’s nothing like the way things are today with social media. Today there is no choice but to be engaged. These days it is somewhat politically correct to say “I make a lot of money, my business is booming.” This is something that really bothers me. Today to succeed with the algorithm, you become an exhibitionist. For example, show me your butt…if you are a woman and you show your butt, you get a lot of likes on the photo. But do you want to show your butt? Or is it just to get likes?

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Your Parisian cantine?

I really like IMA on the Canal, it makes me think of Bob’s a little. Except normally I avoid these kind of places, because they make me think of work. I don’t go out much at night. I am kinda cheap and I think about what we pay at a restaurant and how much it would cost to make it at home. I do like eating in Chinatown for Vietnamese food and soups. The Chinatown near Arts and Metiers. I really like Le Petit Cambodge and Le Cambodge. I usually get takeout. They make a good soup. They’re really pro and quick. They are pretty reliable too. I also like going to Shakespeare & Co. There’s a Bob’s café there, but even if there wasn’t, I would still go.

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Free Persephone {your spa oasis in saint germain des pres}

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Last year thanks to My Little Paris, I discovered a lovely little place called Free Persephone. They were having a Spritz Pedicure Special post the summer holidays, and of course I needed to take part. Little did I know this experience would be so much more than just a pedicure an an Aperol Spritz. I fell immediately in love with this spa oasis in the 6th arrondissement of Paris.

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Today I had the luck of returning to Free Persephone for an Essential Manicure and it was sheer bliss. From start to finish I felt like a princess. Upon arrival, I was offered their special infusion tea of the day, a black tea with orange flowers. Oh la la how fabulously delicious. I was then accompanied by my manicurist to my spa chair and was waited on literally by hand and foot. Not to mention the quality of my manicure was superb.

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Free Persephone is far from your typical day spa. It is a utopia of happiness and well-being. I invite you to check out their website to discover the wide range of services they offer (from massages, to mother daughter manicures to intimate birthday parties – not to mention special events as cool if not cooler than my Spritz Pedicure). Please stay tuned on my site, Insta @jjchase, Facebook page and theirs for all upcoming fun and fab events. And please pay them a visit – you won’t regret it, I promise.

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Vinyasa Yoga in Milan {a vinyasa practice at pura vida power yoga in the center of the city}

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The most important address to find while traveling (for me) – is the best yoga studio in the city. I must admit for Milano this was not an easy task. I spent a decent amount of time browsing the web to find the studio that correctly corresponded to my flow based practice. I must say the research was well worth it. Happiness was found at boutique studio Pura Vida Power Yoga. Located in the center of the city, this studio is calm, discrete and sweet. I spent the morning practicing with Claudia Allegreti, who led a harmonious and challenging power flow that started my day on a high note. Pura Vida executes a traditional vinyasa practice focused on inner dialogue to your outward expression. A practice that aims to reduce stress and focus the mind, while challenging your muscles. Let me say they did the job!

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I likewise had the pleasure of speaking with founder and owner Gabriela Estrada, a fellow American expat who has been practicing yoga for nearly two decades. She has lived all around the world and has other new and exciting projects in store, so please keep your eye on the @puravidapoweryoga Instagram for the inside scoop – and most certainly pay a visit to Pura Vida when you are in Milan. It can only add bliss to your visit.

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