Tips + Trends

If you live in an historic home, why not enter The Baltimore Sun’s inaugural historic home contest?

All kinds of historic homes are eligible, including those that have been adapted for use as living space, such as converted churches, barns and carriage houses. However, homes must be owner-occupied and at least 50 years old. Entries will be judged on appearance, the use of traditional materials, historical appropriateness and style.

The grand prize winner will receive a two-night stay at the Hotel Monaco Baltimore.

388c1d_7344765dcb80da4402bbd79c3835d331.jpg_srz_403_295_75_22_0.50_1.20_0Chesapeake Home + Living is proud to sponsor the inaugural Charm City Design House,  Oct. 25-27.  Jennifer Hardy, the interior designer behind the projects, notes that the purpose of the event is highlight creative local people, provide inspiration to visitors and raise money for the Baltimore Design School. Artists, fabricators and furniture designers will be showcased — and all their wares will be for sale. 11 a.m. – 6 p.m. Union Wharf, 915 S. Wolfe St.,  Baltimore. Tickets are $10 at the door or $7 in advance through Hardy’s website.

RA spaForget about buying dad yet another tie or golf shirt. This Father’s Day, help dad unwind by treating him to a men’s spa day at Robert Andrew Salon & Spa.

The Men’s Spa Zone is completely secluded and offers a full day of relaxation and grooming. Dad can kick back in a leather recliner and watch ESPN while having his hair, nails or face colored and cleaned. Complete with a steam room and private lounge, the Robert Andrew Salon & Spa has everything dad deserves.

As Father’s Day specials, the salon is offering a Hot Lather Shave (with steaming towels and a face massage) for as low as $55 or a Men’s Spa Cut and Shave (with hot towels, a scalp massage and a haircut) for $75.

If dad always treats you like a princess, then treat him like the king he is and buy a Royal Retreat. This includes a deep tissue full body massage, buff manicure and pedicure and a gentleman’s facial.  You can book the Royal Retreat for Dad for $261 for approximately 3.5 hours. This price includes gratuity.

1328 Main Chapel Way, Waugh Chapel Gambrills


IMG_1372We thought it couldn’t get any better than a store that sells designer shoes and chocolate that’s absolutely to die for. But last Saturday, Ma Petite Shoe proved us all wrong by opening a café next to their famous shoe and chocolate shop.

The Ma Petite Shoe Café in Hampden offers a variety of reasonably priced sweet treats, coffees and teas and is right next door to the Ma Petite Shoe store on 36th Street in Baltimore.

The café changes it’s menu every day, and the baked goods are always fresh and made right in the store. Carrie Rondo, lead barista, said that they are testing out different foods to see what everybody likes.

Samples of pastries are available at the counter and there is a refrigerated section to keep salads fresh. Rondo said that the beet salad has been a favorite. The café has everything from a healthy lunch to cookies that will satisfy a sweet tooth.

Whether you’re in the mood for a regular iced tea, a chai latte or a vegetable flavored tea, the Ma Petite Shoe Café has various flavors available for coffees and teas, even a lavender flavored syrup which was made in the store.

The café is open 7 a.m. through 7 p.m. Mondays through Saturdays and 7a.m. through 5 p.m. on Sundays.

For the website and full menu, visit

I'M_GROUP_Beauty.JPGBaltimore will experience a taste of Napa Valley next month as the Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay will be hosting an exclusive dinner that showcases the Michael Mondavi Family of Wines on Thursday, June 6 at 7 p.m.

Geoff Whitman, General Manager of Michael Mondavi Family of Wines from Napa Valley, CA will guide guests through the history of the family winery, the six-course dinner, as well as the different types of wine, each of which is served with a different course.

The menu, which was created by Whitman and Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay chef Josh Goodfox, displays each wine impeccably. The dishes and wine are as follows:

Corn and Crab Chowder ~ Amish Bacon, Crème Fraiche, Chive

Isabel Mondavi Chardonnay

Chesapeake Cioppino ~ Kool Ice Bay Rockfish, Little Neck Clams, Mussels, Shrimp, Old Bay-Heirloom Tomato Broth

Spellbound Petite Sirah and Spellbound Reserve Petite Sirah

Gunpowder Farms Roasted Tenderloin of Bison ~ Cool Bean Farms Braised Kale, Roasted Red Beets, Mixed Pee Wee Potatoes, Red Currant Gastrique

“M” by Michael Mondavi

Eastern Shore Strawberry Shortcake ~ Grilled Sweet Butter Pound Cake, Zinfandel Port Macerated Strawberries, Highland Creamery Mascarpone Ice Cream

(Geoff Whitman’s) Medusa, Zinfandel Port

Tickets are $125 per person, and the seats for this rare tasting are limited. To make reservations, call 410-901-6400. The dinner will take place at the Water’s Edge Grill at Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay,100 Heron Boulevard, Cambridge, MD 21613.

For more information, contact Laura Koster at 484.885.3010 or

Beautiful Homes and Urban Gardens in Fells Point

Home is where the heart is.

This Mother’s Day, show your mother that your heart is with her by touring historic homes together in Fell’s Point. The 42ndAnnual Historic Harbor House Tour of Fell’s Point will take place this Sunday, May 12, 11 a.m-5 p.m.

The self-guided tour will take you and mom through about a dozen houses in Baltimore. Each house will have a guide inside to give further educational insight on the history of the home and the owner’s stories. You might already be familiar with a few of the homes on the tour, including the Robert Long House and Colonial Garden, the Thomas Lamdin House and “The Place on Dallas.”

All proceeds from the tour will benefit The Preservation Society, a non-profit 501 ©(3) historic preservation membership organization which serves Federal Hill and Fell’s Point. The Society works to renew and preserve the parts of Fell’s Point and Federal Hill that offer historical and architectural significance.

Tickets are $15 per person if bought in advance and $20 the day of the event, which will take place rain or shine. They can be purchased at the Fell’s Point Visitor Center by calling 410-675-6750, ext. 16 or by logging onto the web site at and using PayPal.

For more information, call the Fell’s Point Visitor Center at 410-675-6750, Ext. 16 or log onto the web site at


“Mary, Mary, quite contrary,

How does your garden grow?

With silver bells and cockle shells,

And pretty maids all in a row.”

Beginning next week, the Howard Peters Rawlings Conservatory will bring nursery rhymes and gardens together to create a magical setting straight out of children’s storybooks. On Friday, March 22 at 6 p.m., “The Enchanted Forest Springs Again” will kick off with a Sneak Peek fundraiser, where guests can enjoy light refreshments and chat with friends. Tickets, which directly benefit the Conservatory, are $25 in advance and $30 at the door.

The flower show itself will continue from March 23 through April 7. Characters from the Enchanted Forest at Clarks Elioak Farm in Ellicott City, Maryland will spring to life among tulips and daffodils. The Rawlings Conservatory encourages visitors to share their memories of the Enchanted Forest on the Conservatory’s Facebook page.

Now celebrating its 125th anniversary, the Rawlings Conservatory features flora and fauna from around the world, boasting a Mediterranean House, Tropical House, Desert House, Orchid Room, Palm House and outdoor gardens.

The Howard Peters Rawlings Conservatory and Botanic Gardens of Baltimore is located in Historic Druid Hill Park and is open to the public Wednesday-Sunday, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. For more information about the event, please visit or call 410-396-0008.

fred restaurant week logoOn the heels of Annapolis Restaurant Week, Frederick will showcase the culinary delights of its own eateries for rare, low, fixed prices.

From Mar. 4-10, nearly two dozen restaurants will offer dining specials: chefs will prepare a two-course lunch for $15.13, a three-course lunch for $20.13, a two-course dinner for $20.13 or a three-course dinner for $30.13. All prices exclude tax, beverages and gratuity.

Among the participating restaurants are Acacia Fusion Bistro, Ayse Meze Lounge, Cacique, Family Meal, Lunchbox, Moxie Bakery & Café, The Orchard, Quynn’s Attic, Shab Row Bistro & Wine Bar, The Tasting Room and The Wine Kitchen.

While you’re in Frederick, be sure to check out other nearby attractions and activities, such as a performance at the Weinberg Center for the Arts, maple syrup demonstrations at Cunningham Falls State Park or Maryland Ensemble Theatre’s Retro Prom. For more ideas, browse the city’s events calendar at

Reservations are strongly recommended during Frederick Restaurant Week. Please visit and click on the name of the restaurant where you wish to dine to view menus and make reservations.

Black-eyed SusanOver the next two weekends, Mar. 2-3 and Mar. 8-10, the Maryland Home & Garden Show will showcase the talents of local landscapers at the Maryland State Fairgrounds in Timonium, MD. As this season’s theme is “Films in Flowers,” garden and hardscape displays will each endeavor to illustrate a movie.

In addition to landscaping exhibits, the show will feature home improvement displays, a plant marketplace, fine crafts and special seminars by experts. On Mar. 2 and 3, Dr. Lori of the Discovery Channel’s “Auction Kings” will evaluate your flea market finds and antiques. From Mar. 8-10, The Wall Wizard will demonstate techniques to improve your painting and wallpapering skills. Also during these days, the Maryland Orchid Society and the Baltimore Bonsai Club will hold their shows and sales.

While you’re browsing the displays, don’t miss the Maryland Chapter of the American Society of Interior Designers, which will provide complimentary, 20-minute individual consultations when you bring in your swatches and samples.

View the list of vendors and find out more about the spring show by visiting Coupons and advance tickets are also available online.

The Maryland State Fairgrounds are located at 2200 York Road, Lutherville-Timonium, MD and can be contacted at 410-863-1180.

Hyatt Regency Chesapeake BayPicture yourself in your own film noir – the private eye who unlocks the mystery or the femme fatale whose charms ensnare. A melodrama draped in black and white may be just the cure to those weary winter blues.

If February’s frigid mornings have you wishing you could escape under the covers, or – better yet – go undercover, this is your chance. On Feb. 23, the Eastern Shore’s Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay will host a 007-themed  experience, led by experts at the International Spy Museum, whose most recent exhibit is titled “Exquisitely Evil: 50 Years of Bond Villains.”

Guests who make overnight reservations are invited to participate in Super Spy Weekend activities, which cater to both adults and children. At Dinner and Drinks with a Spy, adults can sip martinis, savor Chef Tony Breeze’s three-course meal and finish off with an Ice Cream Bombe for dessert ($65). While they dine, guests will attempt to expose the secret agent in the room.

In addition to other Bond-themed events, including Dive-In movies at the resort’s indoor, heated pool, guests may partake in complimentary activities such as tennis, miniature golf and disc golf or use the resort’s lavish facilities, which include the Captain’s Parlor game room, fitness center and jogging trail.

By requesting the resort’s Luxury on Sale deal (offer code LUXRY4) at the time of reservation, guests can receive sumptuous accommodations and a complimentary s’mores package.

Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay Golf Resort, Spa and Marina is located at 100 Heron Blvd. at Route 50 in Cambridge. To make reservations, please call 410-901-1234. For dinner reservations at Water’s Edge Grill, please call 410-901-6400. Discover more of the resort’s offerings by visiting