@kirstenalana - Kirsten Alana

on IG to be a resource for those planning travel • city breaks/nature escapes/luxury/sustainability/art/culture • lives in LA with @dante.vincent
http://www.kirstenalanaphotography.com/
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On the first day of my trip to Ireland, my luggage had failed to arrive with me and it was pouring rain meanwhile my feet were in little flats that weren’t meant for wet weather and my spirit felt oh so worn down for so many reasons I won’t mention here because it’s not the point of the story. The point is that my dear friends @mumhad1ofthose and @descurran didn’t mind alternating walking around in the rain, taking photos of Dublin’s streets and parks while making the best of things with pints in pubs and a cuppa or two in a coffee shop or three. I don’t think I would have fared well on my own in the days before my work for Steller in Ireland started, not then, but Neil and Des had come over from London to visit Dublin but also specifically to visit me. The kind of friends I’m convinced we all need a few of as human beings, friends who will just be there for you in rain or in sunshine even if you’ve been wearing the same clothes for three days and aren’t feeling chipper. Or worse. As much as I’m grateful for all the travel that I get to go, when I think about it - the greatest blessing of my life have been my friendships. I don’t say it often enough and I also continually fear I’m not a good enough friend in return. So I thought I’d say it now.
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I hope you have friends like that too.
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More Ireland once the new version of @stellerstories is finally released to the public! I want to be able to share a preview of my Stories there here, and then at once link you to the full stories in Steller... 
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#dublinireland #dublinmydarling #thisisdublin #bestofireland #loveireland #visitdublin #ststephensgreen #friendshipgoals
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On the first day of my trip to Ireland, my luggage had failed to arrive with me and it was pouring rain meanwhile my feet were in little flats that weren’t meant for wet weather and my spirit felt oh so worn down for so many reasons I won’t mention h

St Stephen's Green
What did you think of #thefinalepisode of #gameofthrones?  After my time in Ireland these last few weeks, I felt more invested than ever going into last night. And so grateful for all the experiences I had visiting locations where the show was filmed. From meeting extras and crew from the show to seeing the props and costumes at the official Exhibition in Belfast next to the Studios and the backlot, standing in the exact spot Bran did in the very first episode when he was learning to shoot a bow and arrow at Winterfell aka Castle Ward and perhaps most special to me because I loved huskies before the show brought so much attention to wolf dogs... meeting Will and his  @got_direwolves that played Summer and Grey Wind in the first season. Since they were trained by the show’s trainer, they’re more comfortable and friendly with people than any other dogs I’ve ever met.
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So while other countries such as Spain and Croatia also have connections to the show, I don’t think you can beat the experience of visiting Ireland if you love @gameofthrones as much as I did because it’s so much a part of Ireland and Northern Ireland on so many levels from where it’s filmed to who was in front of the camera and more. There’s even an official app to ensure you don’t miss anything when you visit!
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I’ll tag every applicable account in this photo so you know where to go if you want to have the same experiences I did. I want to thank @stellerstories @discoverni & @tourismireland for hosting me for one of the most memorable experiences of my life during the Final Season. It’s not lost on me how much I have to be grateful for. I am very grateful.
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#stellerxtourismireland #stellerstories #bestofireland #wheregotstarted #gotdirewolves #gotfans #gameofthronesireland #gotterritory #loveireland #discoverni #northernireland
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What did you think of #thefinalepisode of #gameofthrones ? After my time in Ireland these last few weeks, I felt more invested than ever going into last night. And so grateful for all the experiences I had visiting locations where the show was filmed

Winterfell Castle - Game of Thrones Visitor Attraction
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@punkodelish Worst series ending in history. Love this shot though and wish I had one just like it. 🙌🏼

@lesleyannemurphy 🙌🏻🙌🏻

Ireland is just as green and beautiful as you might have heard. I can assure you of that now that I’ve finally been outside of Dublin. That was the only place I’d been until these last two weeks, which kept me so busy for such long days gathering content to do a series on @stellerstories that I gave up trying to keep up with posting live. I knew I’d never be able to be present on the ground while being hosted for work and also be present with you, my community — and do both well, with the hours we were keeping. Now I’m trying to finish my series for Steller in their new Beta version which will then go live along with Stories from more than 20 other creatives. We all spread out across the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland to bring you a Digital Day in the Life which will go live later this month. This photo was taken during one of the most special days to me where we flew over the stunning coastline of Northern Ireland checking out where much of #GameOfThrones was filmed from sand dunes that double as Dorne to rock faces that were the foundation of Dragonstone. Tourism Northern Ireland were kind enough to arrange for @cuttingedgeheli & @bushmillsinn to host Wyatt, Dave (see tags for their profiles) and myself as a surprise that ended up being a 45 minute ride I will truly never forget. One you can take too. Just check out their accounts to book! And stay tuned for much more...
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#bestofireland #discoverni #loveireland #northernireland #whereGOTstarted #visitnorthernireland #aerialphotography #cuttingedgeheli #stellerstories
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Ireland is just as green and beautiful as you might have heard. I can assure you of that now that I’ve finally been outside of Dublin. That was the only place I’d been until these last two weeks, which kept me so busy for such long days gathering con

Ballintoy
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@swedishnomad Beautiful place 👌

@rachelroams What a gorgeous coastline! I’d be so stoked to explore @discoverni @northernireland.

Last year @dante.vincent and I drove cross country to move to California. We had bought a National Parks Pass and intended to visit Bryce Canyon but a storm came out of nowhere and visibility was reduced to such a dangerous level, it wasn’t really even safe to drive. Not knowing the area well, and with no cell signal, we simply turned around and headed back the way we came, driving slowly and obeying all the safety precautions we could. Then, like we’d driven through a massive doorway or past an invisible wall - the storm disappeared. In its place was a fog that made the burnt orange earth of Utah glow and seem almost alien. So we stopped to appreciate it and found ourselves climbing higher and higher driven by curiosity and wonder. Utah will do that to you. I’ve been to all 50 states and there’s truly something about nature in the state that’s different. It’s not actually unique. It’s just incredibly unusual. During the climb, I reached a point where I didn’t feel safe continuing. But like a mountain goat, with no fear, Danté kept exploring and I saw a picture perfect moment as he traversed the path you see in this photo. So I took this, and then I sat, for a moment - to take it all in. I love big cities for their energy and the way they’re a museum for the artistic and technological endeavors of mankind. But it’s nature that never fails to stop me in my tracks and leave me speechless just like this scene did in Utah. I need both to survive but I’ve never been more scared in my life than I am on this #EarthDay. I believe we’ve come to value the creature comforts of our cities over the serenity of our natural world. We’ve sacrificed the health of our planet for the sake of what we believe are our needs. But if we kill the planet, we kill ourselves too. And while I’m far from perfect, I’ve started to try to think every day, “How can I be a better steward of the natural world?” I’m changing whatever I can in answer. Because I don’t want this and other times in the past to be the last times I’m left speechless by nature. It’s never too late to make a change for the
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Last year @dante.vincent and I drove cross country to move to California. We had bought a National Parks Pass and intended to visit Bryce Canyon but a storm came out of nowhere and visibility was reduced to such a dangerous level, it wasn’t really ev

Red Canyon
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@punkodelish Beautiful

@bucketlistjourney Sometimes the unexpected is the best treasures of a trip 💛💛💛

Hotel Joaquin, where I stayed during my @cntraveler assignment in Laguna Beach in partnership with @capitalone, is close to the ocean and a very short bike ride away from downtown Laguna Beach. I prefer city breaks that incorporate accessible nature experiences and this stay was the ideal balance of culture and relaxation. At all hours of the day, there was a calming view of the ocean from my room and the common areas. When I needed more that just a view, I borrowed one of the complimentary bikes to shop at the boutiques and art galleries in town or or I hitched a ride in @hoteljoaquin’s electric Moke to be dropped off at the perfect place to begin a sunset hike. My visit coincided with the First Thursday Art Walk that happens every week all year long in Laguna Beach. The annual art auction was also taking place at the 100 year old Laguna Art Museum where I listened to live classical music while dreaming of which piece I’d bid on from the curated mix of modern and traditional art. Another day, I walked from one end of Heisler Park to the other before settling down to eat lunch with a view of the ocean [of course!] -- all while earning an unlimited 2 miles per dollar on every purchase that I can then transfer to one of 14 participating travel loyalty programs so I can turn around and do it all again wherever my next adventure takes me! #CapitalOnePartner #IamATraveler
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Hotel Joaquin, where I stayed during my @cntraveler assignment in Laguna Beach in partnership with @capitalone , is close to the ocean and a very short bike ride away from downtown Laguna Beach. I prefer city breaks that incorporate accessible nature

Laguna Beach, California
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@rachelroams This looks like such a wonderful trip! I might have to recreate it 😍

@rachelroams @kirstenalana I got married just up the coast at Crystal Cove State Park 😍

For my @cntraveler assignment in Laguna Beach in partnership with @capitalone, I stayed at @hoteljoaquin, a 2019 Hot List property that allowed me to earn an unlimited 10 miles per dollar because I booked it via hotels.com/venture. I always prefer properties that reflect the destination they’re in with decor, art and cuisine. Auric Road hired Studio Robert McKinley to ensure that is the case by taking what was The Motor Inn and redesigning it as Hotel Joaquin with the vibe of St.Barths, the 1950s Southern California beach culture and the aesthetic of the Mediterranean coast. One-of-a-kind vintage pieces, customized furniture, curated artwork, record players and cabinets bursting with vintage vinyl helped me feel as if I was staying in the home of an old friend. A home that has no TV and no phone but lots of books, board games and beautiful views - my favorite kind. Each morning as I enjoyed my complimentary coffee or tea in my room, I’d read a book or listen to a record as the the sun came up over Shaws Cove. Then I’d join complimentary yoga on the roof deck which features a greens and edible flower garden used by Chef Leo Bongarra of Saline and the bar staff who make their own syrups and bitters. The only difficulty each day was choosing between the complimentary activities such as surfing, relaxing at the heated pool or adventures in Laguna Beach. See more in my Stories. #CapitalOnePartner #IamATraveler
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For my @cntraveler assignment in Laguna Beach in partnership with @capitalone , I stayed at @hoteljoaquin , a 2019 Hot List property that allowed me to earn an unlimited 10 miles per dollar because I booked it via hotels.com/venture. I always prefer pr

Hotel Joaquin
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@rachelroams Absolutely beautiful property! What an adventure ❤️

@nadinejoliecourtney Looks gorgeous! Thanks for the intel!

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Remember the big assignment I teased back in February? I’m excited to finally get to share with you that I was working for @cntraveler in partnership with @capitalone in Laguna Beach. Only two hours south of where I live in Los Angeles, it’s a very different California experience from the one I live day to day. Join me in Stories and in two more posts where I’ll share what I discovered while traveling with my Venture® Card. Through January 2020, card members like me can earn an unlimited 10 miles per dollar on thousands of properties by booking at hotels.com/venture. That’s motivation to find and book getaways not just far from home but within my new home state as well. Can’t wait to share where I stayed tomorrow - it’s a 2019 Hot List property! #CapitalOnePartner #IamATraveler
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Remember the big assignment I teased back in February? I’m excited to finally get to share with you that I was working for @cntraveler in partnership with @capitalone in Laguna Beach. Only two hours south of where I live in Los Angeles, it’s a very d

Laguna Beach, California
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@rachelroams I got married in Laguna Beach!!! Love this partnership. Excited to check out the full adventure!

@rachelroams @kirstenalana agreed! I’ve told @toddheuston I’d like to go back soon for the ol’ walk down memory lane.

Southern California doesn’t have the exact same kind of Spring that I experienced living elsewhere in the United States and Europe. So I was glad @dante.vincent was game for a weekend visit to Descanso Gardens which we had previously visited in December for their nighttime light show. It has themed gardens where landscape architecture styles from around the world are on display for residents and visitors who pay the entrance fee. We paid ours in advance online, showed up early and were almost the first to walk in when it opened. I’d advise this if you want to see the gardens with less people.  Once we entered, we headed straight for the Japanese-style garden — where I took this photo — that [from @descansogardens website] “blends design elements from four classic garden styles. Cross an arched bridge and walk on shaded paths along a koi-filled stream to the teahouse, designed by architect Whitney Smith and built in 1966. The plants in this garden are all native to Asia, and include camellias, azaleas, mondo grass and Japanese maples. The distinctive roof of the teahouse, crafted from blue tiles imported from Japan, is especially striking in the spring when nearby pink cherry and plum trees are in bloom. The garden includes a minka, modeled after a traditional farmhouse, which was designed by Kenneth Masao Nishimoto and built in 1969.” As we weren’t able to travel to Japan this Spring like we’d hoped to do and since a similar area in the Brooklyn Botanic Garden was always our favorite in New York, this part of Descanso ended up being our favorite at this time of year. It felt the most different from where we live near Runyon Canyon, which is more arid, punctuated by palm trees, cactus and succulents and which doesn’t really have anything blooming except the plants on our balcony. (Not complaining. Just drawing a contrast.) Does this sound like somewhere you’d want to visit when you travel to Los Angeles?
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#descansogardens #exploredescanso #sakura #cherryblossoms #japanesegarden #discoverLA #LAstory #visitcalifornia #restinnature #LaCañadaFlintridge #BeniHoshi
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Southern California doesn’t have the exact same kind of Spring that I experienced living elsewhere in the United States and Europe. So I was glad @dante.vincent was game for a weekend visit to Descanso Gardens which we had previously visited in Decem

Descanso Gardens
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@inbedwith.me So glad you picked this one 💙

@rachelroams I’ve always wanted to visit here! Sounds so beautiful.

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feeling sad for all of the people who will never again see Notre-Dame, looking like this and profoundly grateful for all the times I saw it... while also heart broken at how much I took for granted that it would just always be there for me to see every time I returned to Paris
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today’s fire is a representation of how fragile this existence is - anyone and anything can be taken from us at any time
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don’t take a second of life or a person you love for granted, ever
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feeling sad for all of the people who will never again see Notre-Dame, looking like this and profoundly grateful for all the times I saw it... while also heart broken at how much I took for granted that it would just always be there for me to see eve

Cathédrale Notre-Dame de Paris
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@inbedwith.me Devastated❤️

Who else woke up extra excited because today is GAME OF THRONES DAY??!!!! ️
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This was shot in Wales a few years ago during a press trip where the part of Khaleesi was played by @lesleyannemurphy. Thanks Les! ️󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿 #forthethrone #gameofthrones #visitwales #got #gotfans #findyourepic #gwladgwlad
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Who else woke up extra excited because today is GAME OF THRONES DAY??!!!! ️ . . This was shot in Wales a few years ago during a press trip where the part of Khaleesi was played by @lesleyannemurphy. Thanks Les! ️󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿 #forthethrone #gameofthrones #v

Caernarfon Castle
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@truthslinger @kirstenalana Goodness. You’re right. In that case. Winter really is here too 😭😭😭. In anything but weather. Send us some cold. Just a little.

@inbedwith.me Never watched it!

Looking back over my photos, I still can’t believe that a place like Catalina Island can be part of LA County but feel so much like the Med which is in fact so far away you can’t just take a boat there from my home in West Hollywood....
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Seriously, if you’re planning a trip to Southern California but you want something a little different, even though my experience to the island was hosted and of course they want me to tell you to @visitcatalinaisland - I’m telling you because I think you should visit. It’s a fun place that’s very special in ways the mainland just, isn’t.
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(Not that I haven’t grown to love LA, because I have!) And now that it’s settled you should visit, you have a few options on how to get there. You could be very baller, but maybe not so environmentally-friendly and you could take a helicopter. Or, you could do as we did and take the @catalinaexpress out of Long Beach to Avalon. An upgraded ticket in the Commodore Lounge includes one free Bloody Mary or glass of Champagne and priority boarding. They’re famous for the Bloody Mary in certain circles. And I can attest to it being quite delicious!
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No matter how you get there, maybe get there this year. This view will greet you as you pull into Avalon’s harbor and what you do from there is up to you. But since it’s the 100th Anniversary of William Wrigley Jr. buying a controlling interest in what is now the Catalina Island Company - there’s more to do this year then there ever has been before. And if they can’t help you enjoy Catalina, there’s always the @catalinachamber & @catalinamuseum plus a very friendly crop of locals who are like islanders the world over, the kind of people you want to sit and have a drink with, full of good stories. There’s just something about Island life! ️
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#voyagersincatalina #visitcatalina #visitcatalinaisland #wrigleycentennial #visitcalifornia #catalinaisland
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Looking back over my photos, I still can’t believe that a place like Catalina Island can be part of LA County but feel so much like the Med which is in fact so far away you can’t just take a boat there from my home in West Hollywood.... . Seriously,

Catalina Island
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@inbedwith.me I need to visit!!

@rachelroams I love hearing what a great experience you had! Sounds like it’s time for me to get back to @visitcatalinaisland. 🙌🏼

Did you know that the word ‘casino’ does not actually denote a place of gambling? Or at least it didn’t until quite recently. When Catalina Island’s Casino was commissioned by William Wrigley Jr, the word in Italian simply denoted a place of gathering, a meeting place for entertainment and dancing. Wrigley intended it to be THE place for entertainment and dancing on Catalina Island. And it was! Benny Goodman earned his reputation as the “King of Swing” in the massive top floor ballroom which is surrounded by the columned portico in this photo that offers 365 degree photos of Catalina Island, the town of Avalon and the Bay. Cecile B. DeMille once screened his latest films in the Wrigley’s private viewing room at the Casino. The green rooms hosted Errol Flynn, Cary Grant and more. Even now, the Avalon Theatre on the ground floor still shows first-run movies nightly at 7:30 p.m. and while the latest tech plays those movies now, the projection rooms still house the original state-of-the-art equipment that was installed in the early 1900’s to usher in the era of talking pictures under a ceiling of the most stunning Art Deco murals completed by John Gabriel Beckman. 24 karat gold stars add to the feeling of Hollywood glamour that still seems to infuse the whole building but they’re mere icing on the cake when you consider all the history the Casino has been a part of since it was completed on May 29, 1929. It was then, and still is, one of the most important buildings on Catalina Island & I really enjoyed learning about it through my hosted ‘Behind the Scenes’ tour with @visitcatalinaisland. 90 minutes flew by way too fast for me and I was glad I’d opted for the longer tour over the 45 minute version. I could have lingered up here for 90 minutes alone. From where I took this photo, I could even see bright orange Garibaldi fish swimming in the deep teal waters of the Bay and a lone seal poked its head out as if to say “hello ”. 2019 marks 100 years since Wrigley fell in love with the island ended up investing in it, from up here, it was so easy to see why. Pure magic!  #visitcatalinaisland #voyagersincatalina #wrigleycentennial
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Did you know that the word ‘casino’ does not actually denote a place of gambling? Or at least it didn’t until quite recently. When Catalina Island’s Casino was commissioned by William Wrigley Jr, the word in Italian simply denoted a place of gatherin

Avalon Casino Movie Theater
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@rachelroams I had no idea casino didn’t originally refer to a gambling hall! @visitcatalinaisland’s Casino Point is gorgeous. I got SCUBA certified just beyond the edge of that building!