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I’ve been lucky enough to live in Paris for almost a year now and am currently enjoying my first Parisian Spring, so I am by no means an expert on Paris itineraries, but I am often being asked where the best places to eat/visit/shop in Paris are, so I started thinking about what my must do list would include if I was only visiting for a weekend.

There are far too many lovely places to visit in Paris to list here, and there is far too much listed here to do in one weekend, but hopefully that just means an excuse for you to visit again soon. I hope you might find this guide useful to if you are in the process of planning a weekend in Paris, and that you might be able to pick out a few things to try next time you visit. As with most places in Northern Europe, Paris is a very seasonal place, so I have made the following suggestions based on a Spring/Summer visit. After writing this guide, I also realised that it’s quite food-centric, but hopefully all the walking around Paris will mean you have enough of an appetite to sample many of the delicious things Paris has to offer!

1 // First things first: A late start

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Personally, I’m not much of an early riser, so whether you have popped over on a Friday night Eurostar from London or travelled from further afield, a lie in with the object of your affections is a must do for me at the start of any romantic weekend. If your significant other is that way inclined, he or she can always pop out to pick up fresh croissants and pain au chocolat (or choco-amande, my personal favourite) from a local boulangerie, or you can head out for breakfast later on to any of the great cafes popping up all around Paris at the moment. A few to try for breakfast and coffee are HolyBellyCoutumeClaus, FondationTelescope and Cafe KitsunéContinue Reading …


Marchesa Bridal Spring 2015

Georgina Chapman and Keren Craig provided yet another solidly romantic and detailed Marchesa bridal collection. Intricate thread-work, detailed appliqué and beading upon soft layers of beautiful fabric makes this a collection to truly wow. Ballgowns and fishtail shapes dominated the lineup.

‘We’re a romantic brand,’ Chapman said. ‘This is what we love doing.’ And we love witnessing it don’t we…..

Marchesa Bridal Spring 2015Continue Reading …



Lace in the Desert {Dental Offer}_0000

Following on from the advice of our make up artist Angelique Turner, teeth whitening is one of the top 5 ways to give yourself some well earned pampering before the big day. A bright white smile is perfect for all those photographs and is one of those little secrets into making you look instantly younger.

I had the privilege of visiting My Dental Clinic a few months ago to trial their teeth whitening plus they are giving all Lace in the Desert readers an exclusive 10% discount on all visits until 31st December 2015 which can include the teeth whitening. Hurrah! Just mention Lace in the Desert at the time of booking.

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Lace in the Desert {Maria Sundin Photography}_0015

There is always something so wonderfully magical about a beach wedding. Perhaps it’s the instant relaxed vibes or just the sheer beauty of the setting, but beach weddings still feel so exotic for an English girl like myself!

Turquoise and pink hues combined with the natural backdrop of the beach makes today’s wedding a beautiful affair and even more so as it’s captured by the super talented Maria Sundin.

There is the most wonderful engagement story and just wait until you see those shoes….actual.shoe.perfection.

From the bride Tara, ‘Chris and I met in Australia 5 years ago – I was working as a store trainer for Specsavers and he was in head office. I actually asked him out after we had got to know each other through work. We went to our local pub, had some beers and listened to a local band. After dating for 8 months we lived together in Australia for another 2 years before moving on, have travelled all round America for 3 months, moved to 2 big cities and now finally settled in Dubai where we got married.

Chris proposed on the exact date (4 years later) we first ever met. He arranged for us to go to Jumeriah Beach Hotel and we took a stroll down towards the beach area near 360 and the Burj. He got down on one knee just as we were looking at the sun go down behind the Burj Al Arab. It was nice because there was no-one around us and it was a completely private moment. Chris had arranged for a limo to pick us up and take us to the Atlantis. We had dinner booked at Ossiano – this was an intimate gala dinner and we were being cooked by George Calombaris (I am a massive foodie and a huge fan of the Australian/Greek Chef) We were able to meet with him as he was cooking for only 50 people that evening. So that was an amazing surprise. Chris had also arranged for us to stay in the Atlantis – they upgraded us so we had the penthouse suite for the evening. Everything about the proposal was perfect and I love telling this story over and over.

I always imagined getting married on the beach, barefoot and very informal. Dubai is a great place to be able to do that which is why we chose the Rixos as it suited the style of the day that I wanted. There are so many great things to do in Dubai, that we thought our guests who were coming from all over would really enjoy their vacation as well as coming for our wedding. It’s also an in-between place for Oz and UK which made it ideal.

Chris and I both did the planning – it was nice because the day was about us and we were able to input both of our ideas. I liked that we would stay up until midnight after both working full time and be making our decorations for the day. We probably didn’t start pulling everything together until November, but in Dubai I found you can leave things a little bit later.

I wanted a beach romantic theme. I wanted to keep it simple on the tables as I loved my flowers – these were the main piece for me. My favourite flowers and the first ever bunch of flowers Chris bought me were Tiger Lilies. They are a gorgeous colour and smell amazing. I had these mixed with white roses which really complimented them. On the day I had a couple friends who were superstars and really helped in getting the tables ready to how I envisioned it.

I chose Turquoise and Pink as my colour scheme, I knew I was having tiger lillies so the pink was an obvious choice but I wanted the turquoise to go with it. It’s a beautiful colour against the beach back drop and a nice balance with the pink. I made all of my decorations. With inspiration from Pinterest and visits to Satwa and DragonMart, I was able to make all of the décor for the day. I had lots of shells, burlap, candles it really made the tables. Even the arch which Chris and I stood under for the ceremony. We bought that from Dubai Garden Centre, painted it and had the florist place the flowers and tulle round it.’

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Lace in the Desert {Suzanne Cork}_0000

These little beauties came about due to a failed almond butter that I was experimenting with… yes, I don’t often admit to it, but I have recipe disasters too (as Mr C can happily attest to!).  I had soaked the raw almonds and (being a bit too impatient) had not let them dry out properly before I started to blitz them in the blender. As a result, the additional water content in the almonds prevented the fats from the nuts combining properly and I was left with a near-burnt out blender and a big clumpy sticky almond mass! Oops!

My mother brought me up with the staunch mealtime philosophy of “waste not want not” and (although I don’t quite go to her extreme of refusing to throw anything in the fridge away, even if it has so much mould on it a new ecosystem had formed (sorry mum!) I do hate to waste things. SO, on I persevered trying to see if I could salvage the mixture…Continue Reading …