Marissa Bronfman

Archive for the ‘Causes’ Category

FOLLOW FOR PICTURES OF TRAVEL, FASHION, FOOD, DECOR & MORE ON INSTAGRAM.

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TOMMY TON’S TAKE ON FASHION

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ANTIDOTE MAGAZINE #3 | IN PIENO SOLE

BIANCA BALTI IN “IN PIENO SOLE” SHOT BY JAN WELTERS FOR ANTIDOTE MAGAZINE #3, SPRING/SUMMER 2012 VIA MODELS.COM.

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THE HUFFINGTON POST | DANCE KING SHIAMAK DAVAR

After being escorted down a long winding hallway I entered the hotel’s banquet room to the ebullient sound of Hindi [...]

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11.30.12

SKATEISTAN | GIRLS SKATEBOARDING IN AFGHANISTAN

Category: Causes, Travel

“Skateistan, a skateboard park in Kabul, Afghanistan, is giving young girls the chance to be cooler than you’ll ever be. Started by Australian skateboarder Oliver Percovich after kids in the streets of Kabul were using his own skateboard, he teaches the girls to “develop skills in skateboarding, leadership, civic responsibility, multimedia, and creative arts, exploring topics such as environmental health, culture/traditions, natural resources, and peace.”

THERE ARE COOL YOUNG GIRLS SKATEBOARDING IN AFGHANISTAN VIA THE CUT BLOG.

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Jaipur in Technicolor

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MORE SUN SAND & SEA

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BOB BARKER SAVES T.O.’S ELEPHANTS

  Celebrated The Price is Right icon and passionate animal advocate Bob Barker told Toronto on Friday that it’s time for [...]

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11.07.12

THE CITY AND THE STORM

Category: Arts, Causes, Entertainment

NEW YORK MAGAZINE COVER SHOT OF STORM SANDY BY IWAN BAAN VIA FASHION COPIOUS.

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IIFA 2011 VOTING WEEKEND

On Friday March 4th a host of Bollywood celebrities came out to launch the 12th IIFA Voting Weekend, including Kareena [...]

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BAILEY BRINGS MUMBAI TO TIFF12 | PART 2

In Part 2 of this interview, Bailey discusses how to change the future of Hindi cinema, which up-and-coming Indian stars [...]

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THE 2011 IIFA AWARDS

On Wednesday two of Bollywood’s biggest stars announced the 2011 International Indian Film Academy (IIFA) Awards, to be held in [...]

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The ice-cube-size diamond ring she is wearing today might suggest otherwise, but it’s not unusual to find Nita Ambani in the trenches. In the past years she has built a series of enterprises that are proud success stories in contemporary India, including an international preparatory school, a Premier League cricket team, the nation’s first Braille newspaper in Hindi, and a 400-acre model township that houses 12,000 people and stands adjacent to the world’s largest oil refinery. A 400-bed hospital wing is under construction and plans are proceeding for a world-class university on 1,000 acres of property.

While it is true that all of these undertakings are owned or financed by her husband, Mukesh, the richest person in India and the 19th-richest in the world, Nita has earned respect in her own right throughout the country for her vision, drive, and willingness to get her jeweled and manicured fingers dirty. Lately, she has been referred to as “corporate India’s first lady.”

So it must be a source of frustration that, notwithstanding her accomplishments, the international press remains fixated upon her house.

Yes, that house: Antilia, the recently erected 27-story, 400,000-square-foot Xanadu in Mumbai that she shares with her three children and Mukesh, 54, who is worth $22.3 billion. (After a surge in the Indian stock market in 2007, he was briefly thought to be the world’s richest man.)

Between the time construction commenced, in 2008, and when it was completed, in late 2010, press coverage of the dwelling grew ever more fantastical and rabid. Does it really have its own air-traffic-control system and three heliports? Can it create its own weather? The intrigue peaked last October when The New York Times ran a prominent piece reporting that the family had yet to move in, perhaps due to glitches with respect to Vastu Shastra, the Hindu philosophy that guides directional alignments in architecture to create spiritual harmony. As they have from the beginning, the Ambanis provided no comment. “It’s a private home. There is no reason to discuss it in public,” responded a spokesman for Reliance Industries, Mukesh’s conglomerate and India’s largest private-sector company. The closed-door policy has only piqued the worldwide fascination that has surrounded the edifice.

Click here to read the full article from Vanity Fair.

See more photos from Vanity Fair here.

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CHANEL’S FAMOUS CITIES

CHANEL PRE-FALL 2009 : PARIS – MOSCOU “Ruby red lacquered bags like Fabergé eggs swinging from gilded chains, heels sculpted [...]

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A Night with Neemrana | Delhi-Jaipur Highway

Sure, you can fly from Jaipur to Delhi but driving is far more interesting! So much life by the side [...]

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MUMBAI’S CHIC LE MILL

I had my first look at Le Mill back in March, mere days before Mumbai’s first concept store threw a [...]

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04.04.12

WISHING WELL SANCTUARY OPENS ITS DOORS

Category: Causes, Toronto

Brenda Thomas with Timmy the donkey at Wishing Well Sanctuary

For the past few years, Brenda Thomas has had a vision – of an Animal Sanctuary in Bradford West Gwillimbury, that would take in and provide a loving home for rescued farm animals.

“We’re taking animals that are typically raised for food, and promoting a vegetarian lifestyle,” Thomas says. Wishing Well Sanctuary has 51 acres on the 10th Line of BWG, 9.5 of them fenced – and on October 14, received its first residents, 5 sheep and 9 cows.

The sheep are part of a flock of 32, that had been used for research at the University of Guelph, and rescued by Animal Alliance Canada. Most of the flock was adopted out – except for the five that were brought to Wishing Well.

The cows were purchased from a farmer by Animal Alliance, to save them from the slaughterhouse.

Thomas is hoping that all of the animals will find “joy, and open pasture,” at the Sanctuary. “They’re going to live out their lives.”

The sheep posed a particular challenge. “High Health” sheep, bred to be pathogen-free for research purposes, they had to slowly be acclimatized to their environment, and to pathogens, over a period of months, says Liz White of Animal Alliance. The tricky acclimatization was accomplished with the help of Cedar Row Farm Sanctuary, located near Stratford Ontario, and a skilled sheep farmer.

Since “these sheep have never been outside,” Thomas will have to introduce them to pasture slowly – starting with an hour a day.

Besides providing shelter for rescued animals, Thomas has another goal for Wishing Well Sanctuary. Recognizing the connection between humans and animals, she also plans to focus on mental health and healing, using the farm’s buildings for seminars and programs geared towards children, youth and their families, with the animals playing a role. As it says in her brochure, “Animals nurture our awareness of the interconnectedness of all and help us in our healing process.”

She wants to provide art therapy, music, meditation, yoga, dance, tai chi, as well as horticultural therapy and animal therapy, in a safe and peaceful environment. “I really see it as a sanctuary for all animals, human and non-human,” she says, adding, “I’m very into promoting mental health, not treating mental health… There is certainly this big need around here. There are some great things we can do.”

Wishing Well Sanctuary has applied for charitable status, and Thomas has been putting together a portfolio of facilitators to work with families and children. “The wheels are in motion,” she says.

In the meantime, the truck loaded with the rescued animals rolled slowly up the winding drive, to the barn and fenced paddock that will be their new home. The animals were quickly unloaded – the sheep finding their way into a warm stall, the cattle outside into the field – as Thomas and supporters, including Lesley Sloan, also a member of Wishing Well’s Board of Directors, watched.

“It’s the happy side of animal protection,” Thomas says. “These animals are ambassadors, for all the other animals” – being raised for food, at times in less-than-humane conditions.

“I’ve visualized this for so long. It’s just amazing they’re here.”

For more information about Wishing Well Sanctuary, call 905-775-9179.

Read this article in The Bradford Times here.

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THE STAR | BOLLYWOOD IDOLS

During IIFA 2011 Leanne Delap from the Toronto Star called me to chat about Bollywood fashion – read my thoughts in [...]

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BEYOND BOLLYWOOD AT THE ROM

Swami, 1977. Unknown artist; Mumbai, India. Tinted silver gelatin print and poster paint on textured board. Courtesy of the Angela [...]

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SKY’S THE LIMIT FOR VERONICA CHAIL

 It was a sunny spring day in Toronto when I first met Veronica Chail — all dressed up from the [...]

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04.22.11

BOB BARKER SAVES T.O.’S ELEPHANTS

 

Celebrated The Price is Right icon and passionate animal advocate Bob Barker told Toronto on Friday that it’s time for the city’s zoo elephants to pack up their trunks and journey south.

The Toronto Zoo has three gentle giants in captivity — Thoka, Thika and Iringa — who are all at risk for myriad devastating health problems if they continue to live in their cold, cramped quarters. But the zoo doesn’t want to let them go.

Barker led a press conference with Zoocheck Canada and world-renowned animal experts on Friday to persuade city councilors and Toronto Zoo board members to send the elephants to the PAWS animal sanctuary in San Andreas, California, where there are vast tracks of land on which they can roam free and where it is much warmer. The zoo fears that already worrisome attendance rates will plummet without the presence of the elephants, a supposed star attraction, but the evidence suggests otherwise.

Read the full article on The Huffington Post.

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RARE BOLLYWOOD CINEMA SHOWCARDS

  Winding her way through the narrow laneways of dusty Bombay bazaar one hot day, Angela Hartwick happened upon a [...]

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VOGUE INDIA’S STYLE MAVERICKS

MANY THANKS TO VOGUE INDIA FOR FEATURING ME AS PART OF ‘INDIA’S NEW FASHION VANGUARD’. THE MAVERICKS. VOGUE INDIA. OCTOBER [...]

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2011 IIFA PICTURES ON FACEBOOK

Covering the 2011 IIFA Awards Weekend has been an incredible! For now, see dozens of amazing pictures of all the [...]

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12.30.10

YEAR IN REVIEW | NOTABLE INTERVIEWS

This year I had the absolute pleasure of meeting and interviewing so many amazing figures, from so many different worlds. From fashion to photography, Bollywood to comedy, and sports to royalty to charity, 2010 has truly been an incredible year! Here are a few of my favorites…

The inimitable Jeanne Beker

 

Tommy Ton, of Jak & Jil

 

His Majesty Yuvraj Saheb Mandhatasinhji of Rajkot with The Star of India

 

Greg Mortenson, author of “Three Cups of Tea” and “Stones Into Schools”. Co-founder and Executive Director of the Central Asia Institute.

 

Canadian supermodel Coco Rocha

Film director Deepa Mehta (left) and AGO supporter Laura Rapp (right)

Olympic athlete Michael Phelps

Comedian Russell Peters

Bollywood actor, producer and director Aamir Khan

I saved the best for last! Meeting and interviewing Aamir Khan on the red carpet for the debut of Dhobi Ghat: Mumbai Diaries was a privilege and really quite an honor. Considered by millions to be the finest Bollywood actor of his generation, Khan has also proved himself as a very talented director and producer. He has had immense critical and commercial success on nearly all of his various projects, and has shown no fear by moving into the future with challenging films like Dhobi Ghat and Peepli Live. I can’t wait to see what Khan will give us in 2011!


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VOGUE PARIS | LE NOIR

KATE MOSS AND SASKIA DE BRAUW IN “LE NOIR” SHOT BY MERT & MARCUS FOR VOGUE PARIS, SEPTEMBER 2012 VIA [...]

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LATEX DOMINATRIX

KARLIE KLOSS SHOT BY GREG KADEL FOR NUMERO #137 VIA FASHION GONE ROGUE.  

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VANITY FAIR | NITA AMBANI & ANTILIA

The ice-cube-size diamond ring she is wearing today might suggest otherwise, but it’s not unusual to find Nita Ambani in [...]

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12.23.10

THE GIFT OF EDUCATION

It’s no surprise that year after year we find ourselves scrambling at the last minute to find presents for our friends and family, hoping that the perfect gift will miraculously reveal itself and free us from shopping servitude and generic giving.

But what if the perfect gift was actually a world away, on the other side of the globe, in an ancient city on the banks of a holy river?

In India, on the steps leading to the River Ganges, lies the city of Varanasi — it is considered to be one of the oldest cities in the world and the holiest place on earth according to Hinduism, but it is also the place where World Literacy of Canada is creating brighter futures for thousands of children — and they need your help.

Soni is in class 8 and her favorite subject is Sanskrit. She hopes to become a lawyer and dreams of visiting Mount Everest.

For over 50 years World Literacy of Canadahas understood that education is the best weapon for combating poverty and inequality and have committed themselves to educating and empowering women, children and whole communities in Varanasi.

The power of education to effect meaningful and lasting change is no secret – New York Times columnists and Pulitzer prize-winning authors Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl Wudunn wrote about it in the best-selling book Half the Sky: Turning Oppression Into Opportunity; Queen Rania of Jordan champions the efficacy of proper education on her blog, YouTube channel and during speaking engagements around the world; Greg Mortenson’s best selling books Three Cups of Tea and Stones Into Schools: Promoting Peace with Books, Not Bombs, in Afghanistan and Pakistan prove that peace has been possible in these dangerous, remote regions because of education, especially the education and literacy of females. These are but three examples of many that illustrate how important global education and literacy is to each and every one of us.

Anshu is in class 1 and at the top of his class. He loves parrots and hopes to become a police officer so he can serve his community.

World Literacy of Canada dedicates 90 cents of every donated dollar to their work — almost unheard of in the world of charity — and are consistently rewarded the highest grade from the Canadian International Development Agency. And WLC doesn’t stop at the classroom — their mobile library provides books to women and children who might otherwise never have access, they drive to remote classrooms in Varanasi delivering fresh fruit to children who otherwise would have to go without food, they organize free tutoring for students who need help but whose parents are illiterate or too busy to assist — and so much more.

Find out about all of WLC’s programs here.

So this holiday season, give the gift of education, and know that your gift will forever change the life of not just a single child, but an entire community… and one day, an entire country.

For only $350, a child will get to go to school for a year thanks to you, will have all her books paid for, a new uniform provided, tutoring covered. She will study hard, dream of a better future for her and her family, and know that education is the way she can make that dream come true.

Neetu wrote an essay about Ghandi and won first prize! She loves south Indian food and wants to be a doctor when she’s older.

World Literacy of Canada works so closely with the community they can easily help you choose a student to sponsor. Perhaps your son is at medical school — why not sponsor a child who dreams of becoming doctor? Maybe you enjoyed reading as a child — why not sponsor a child who’s a voracious reader but cant afford books? Consider sponsoring a child not just for a year but for all of grade school, or high school. These children in India don’t have much but they have their dreams — turn one of those dreams into a reality this year by donating to WLC.

Read this article on The Huffington Post.

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INSIDE THE SMASHING SUCCESS OF THE COVETEUR

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Delhi Delights

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HAPPY HOLI!

HAPPY HOLI EVERYONE! See all the pictures from Holi at Amanbagh in Alwar last year on Facebook and Flickr

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12.23.10

YEAR IN REVIEW | PRINCE HARRY PLAYS POLO

Category: Causes, Travel

The honorable David Thompson, Prime Minister of Barbados, with Sir Charles Williams, owner of Apes Hill Polo Club and Prince Harry. Source: BTA

Prince Harry playing for Sentebale. Source: BTA

Awards for the Sentebale Polo Cup. Source: BTA

2010 kicked off with a fabulous trip to Barbados in January, for the Sentebale Polo Cup. Sentebale was founded by Prince Harry and Prince Seeiso of Lesotho, to raise funds for and bring greater awareness to the plight of Lesotho’s vulnerable children.

Read the article on The Huffington Post.

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VOGUE & NYT PRAISE INDIA

More and more it seems the entire world has become absolutely enchanted with India. And why not? Name a country [...]

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THE CITY AND THE STORM

NEW YORK MAGAZINE COVER SHOT OF STORM SANDY BY IWAN BAAN VIA FASHION COPIOUS.

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A FAMILY AFFAIR | UDAIPUR 2012

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05.29.10

COCA ROCHA STRUTS FOR A CURE

Category: Causes, Fashion, Toronto

Thursday night’s STRUT FOR A CURE was a spectacular success, with hundreds of Toronto’s fashion pack out at Berkeley Church raising money for children’s cancer and having a roaring good time.

Literally packed to the sweltering rafters we watched supermodel Coco Rocha strut her stuff in international design darling Todd Lynn, bounced to the beats of Dragonette, danced to music by a handful of DJs – all in support of Coco’s cousin Erika who at only 11 years old dreamt of raising money for children diagnosed with cancer.

I chatted with Coco after the show and it’s clear she’s passionate about STRUT and Canadian fashion. Born in Vancouver, she shot to international fame after being spotted at an Irish dancing competition but she has never forgotten her roots and is lauded by everyone who knows her as being incredibly grounded.

With plans to make STRUT bigger and better next year, Coco is also hard at work on her own clothing line Rococo and mentioned with a charming smile that she’ll be married to her sweetheart James Conran in less than two weeks. This stunning supermodel has strutted her stuff on countless runways in the world’s most glamorous locales but don’t write her off as just another pretty face – an ardent supporter of STRUT and an emerging design talent in her own right, Coco is not just a supermodel, but in fact, quite a superwoman.

Many thanks to my friend Nolan Bryant for taking fabulous photos all night, a few of which I’ve used here.

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DABANGG AT IIFA 2011

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Theres Alexandersson in “Mystic Voyage” shot by Camilla Akrans for Vogue Nippon, March 2011 via Fashion Gone Rogue.

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03.12.10

An Apple A Day

Category: Causes, India, Travel

Morning fruit delivery to young school children is yet another fantastic program run by World Literacy of Canada in Varanasi. I hopped in their rickshaw this morning and went to see how the program operates. Once a week, sometimes more, WLC goes out and distributes fruit to children in school, providing them with a nutritious start to their day. First the children’s hands are washed, then the fruit, and a signature from the teacher is entered into the WLC record book. A number of different schools in Varanasi are visited during a time span of approximately 3 hours.

Learn more about World Literacy of Canada here!

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5 MINUTES WITH INDIA’S HOT STYLIST PERNIA QURESHI

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BACK TO BOMBAY

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03.11.10

Teacher Role Model Training in Varanasi

Category: Causes, India, Travel

The day after International Women’s Day and the Kabaddi Tournament, World Literacy of Canada launched their Teacher Role Model curriculum. After many months of dedicated hard work, WLC has carefully chosen 400 rural women from more than 1000 who applied to become empowered teachers and role models in their communities.

With new curriculum books in hand, these brave young women met on March 9th and 10th for two full days of orientation and training. What a site it was! The auditorium was alive with a rainbow of beautiful saris and once the 400 split into smaller groups some real personalities started to shine.

These women have a lot of work ahead of them but they are on a path that will forever change the course of their lives and the lives of their families and communities!

Another fantastic program launched by World Literacy of Canada, find out more here!

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BORDER & FALL

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THE GREAT WALL OF CHINA

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03.11.10

Kabaddi Craze in Varanasi

Category: Causes, India, Travel

 

World Literacy of Canada could not have celebrated International Women’s Day this past March 8th in any better way than by hosting their 2nd annual women’s Kabaddi Tournament in the holy city of Varanasi, just seconds away from their office on the steps to the Ganges.

This tournament is a perfect symbol of the incredible work WLC has done to promote education and empowerment for women in the area – not long ago these fierce females were decked out in saris and relegated mainly to the home, now they’re fighting for glory on a kabaddi field in front of thousands of onlookers!

Spirits were high and the players really put on a show, what dynamos!

World Literacy of Canada is a real force to be reckoned with – they literally are “turning the page on poverty” through literacy and their passion for promoting play among women who never dared to dream but who are now reaching for the stars.

World Literacy of Canada hasn’t just created a better world for women in India, they’ve opened the door to a universe of possibility.

Find out more about WORLD LITERACY OF CANADA here!

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The End Signifies A New Beginning

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BOLLYWOOD AT THE ROM

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MISS MALINI BUILDS A BUSINESS BY BLOGGING

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02.19.10

OLYMPIAN APPETITES & NATION HOUSES IN WHISTLER

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I am so excited to launch my new blog while in Whistler, B.C. for the 2010 Olympic Games!

Inspired by fascinating travels, interesting encounters and a love of writing I decided to create this space to share my adventures. In addition to regularly contributing to The Huffington Post, my blog will feature day-to-day tales, anecdotes, tips, guides and much, much more!

In less than two weeks I’ll be taking off for a luxury tour through India – from the Taj Mahal to the Himalayas, from the Ganges to the wilds of Rajasthan – I hope you will join me as I share entertaining stories, beautiful photos, cultural clues and illuminating videos.

The trip will also feature a stay on the banks of the Ganges in the holy city of Varanasi where I’ll be joining World Literacy of Canada as they launch a number of extraordinary programs to advance education and empowerment of women in India.

I’ve been in Whistler for two weeks already and the Olympic spirit is growing stronger each day in this gorgeous mountain town! Stay tuned for Olympic coverage, village fashion and style, skiing and snowboarding, dining and nightlife all in beautiful Whistler, B.C.!

Follow me on Twitter, join me on Facebook, look at photos on Flickr, read my articles on The Huffington Post and stay updated with my Website.

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