As warmer weather approaches, party planners start buzzing about outdoor entertaining. For many people, nothing can beat a springtime garden party, mid-summer poolside gathering, or early fall bonfire. With good planning and vision, your outdoor gathering can boast just as much luxury and style as any indoor soiree.
In general, the trend for outdoor entertaining in 2019 will be a blend of comfort and elegance, with well-designed outdoor spaces, thoughtful food and drink, and bursts of creative flair like unique flower arrangements or craft cocktails.
If you’re interested in incorporating some upcoming trends into your outdoor entertainment plans, here are some ideas to get you started:
JUST ADD FIRE
Attractive and functional fire pits are a popular choice for those who frequently entertain outdoors. Safer and more elegant than an open fire, the right fire pit can enhance your patio decor while providing a cozy spot for guests to gather. Outdoor dining tables with built-in fire pits combine functionality with comfort and fun, and fire pits can be found in many styles to match your taste. Toasting marshmallows can be a luxurious activity with specialty flavored marshmallows and whimsical skewers.
Sustainability is a trend across the board, and for outdoor entertaining that means sustainable decor and tableware. With more and more companies offering eco-friendly products, hosting a sustainable party can still be both elegant and tasteful. Melamine dishes come in a spectrum of colors and patterns and are perfect for outdoor dining. Try fun patterned paper straws instead of plastic ones. As a bonus, these alternatives feel much more luxurious than plastic.
Local food is a big part of the sustainability trend, and it fits right into the atmosphere of an eco-friendly outdoor gathering. Find a high-end catering company that sources local ingredients, and let your guests know where the food is coming from. From quality grass-fed steaks and locally caught fish on the grill to seasonal fruits blended into cocktails, sustainable food can elevate your festivities.
Adding color to outdoor spaces is an exciting trend for 2019 (no moregreige!), and what better way to embrace this concept than using Pantone’s Color of the Year? This year, the color is Living Coral, a mellow, uplifting shade. Try incorporating coral into your outdoor design with throw pillows, blankets, outdoor rugs, and tablecloths. You could even work it into your flower arrangements or cocktail recipes. Bold color choices are also trendy, so don’t be afraid to use colors that pop for your outdoor entertaining.
CREATIVE LIGHTING AND FLOWERS
Now that more extravagant lighting solutions are available and accessible, expect creative hosts to ramp up their lighting style when planning outdoor gatherings. Layered lighting, projections, and strong lighting statements are all ways to create an impressive atmosphere for outdoor entertaining.
Floral arrangements have moved beyond simple tabletop centerpieces and are often a striking piece of design in and of themselves. Monochromatic floral designs, flower ceilings, and unique plants like succulents will be gracing patios and gardens in 2019. If floral design is beyond your own comfort level as a host, hire a good local florist to help prepare for your outdoor parties.
Nothing enhances an outdoor gathering like the perfect cocktail. For outdoor entertaining in 2019, cocktails will have surprising ingredients – think turmeric or mushrooms. Locally-produced spirits (especially gin) will be a hot ingredient and educating guests with tastings and flights will be a highlight. Even mocktails will be elevated beyond the standard Shirley Temple as more sophisticated nonalcoholic mixers and recipes are available.
Whether you follow some of these trends or bring your own creative touches to your outdoor parties, this entertainment season is sure to be full of fun, comfort, and luxury.
If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be? Here’s an idea – Named the best city in the world by Travel + Leisure in both 2017 and 2018, the small town of San Miguel de Allende is revered around the world for its stunning architecture, incredible cuisine and peaceful lifestyle. Gaining attention from both retirees and expats, the city is becoming increasingly popular leaving many to wonder if home prices will increase over time. In this month’s Global Market Guide, we take an inside look at the current state and the predicted future of the luxury real estate market in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico.
Transactions in San Miguel are primarily done in cash, so many agents have found that it is easier to vet clients because they know that potential home owners are coming to the table prepared to buy.
Exclusive listings are prevalent among sellers in the market. Buyer representation is not dominant like it is in the United States although, there are agents in San Miguel de Allende that focus specifically on helping buyers throughout the transaction since the process is much different than in other parts of the world.
CURRENT HOUSING MARKET
Clients come to San Miguel for the high-end location, stunning views, pools and a relaxing quality of life. Recently, buyers in the area have been looking for homes with cleaner lines and contemporary design, which differ from the arches and Spanish colonial aesthetic that is dominant in the area.
There has been an influx of new construction just outside of the city within the past 5-7 years, and many luxury buyers have been attracted to these new developments. Traditionally buyers are interested in nearby attractions such as vineyard and equestrian offerings and several have been attracted to the mall and golf course near many of the new developments outside the city.
LUXURY BUYER PROFILE
Because San Miguel is a secondary market, where many buyers travel to purchase second and vacation homes, many buyers are often very clear on their preferences when purchasing a residence. These buyers are focused on harnessing the cultural experience with a level of sophistication.
CURRENT POLITICAL CLIMATE
Last year (2018) proved to be the best year on record for our member. Sales saw a significant decrease during the election, however following the election, when it was confirmed that the peso would not be affected, sales began to increase. Since the election prices in the area have remained steady and buyers are once again confident in the market.
GROWTH IN THE MARKET
Currently, San Miguel is seeing significant price improvement in the area, which our member predicts will stabilize the market for the next quarter. The demand for real estate is high in the area as more retirees and expats flock to the area.
Both culturally and artistically dynamic, the small city is protected by UNESCO preserving much of the original architecture and historically significant monuments that draw potential buyers to the area.
In mid-2018 local authorities temporarily blocked individuals from selling buying or remodeling properties until new regulations were set up to limit and preserve architecture in the area. Since then, new construction has remedied much of this and San Miguel de Allende continues to expand welcoming locals and foreign buyers alike.
Special thanks to our memberCDR Bienes San Miguel for providing their insights about the luxury market in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico.
Happiest Hour in Harwood District is hosting a free Big Game Watch Party in its downstairs lounge and lawn, and a VIP watch party upstairs on its covered patio. The free party will have beer tower specials and $5 off Team Happytizers. The VIP party, which costs $35, will have an all-you-can-eat buffet. Doors open at 4:30 p.m.
Checkered Past Winery in the Cedars has a Big Game Watch Party with lots of prizes and tasty bites. $25 tickets will get you access to the game day buffet, while $50 tickets also include tickets to win prizes and guaranteed seating. Doors open at 4:30 p.m.
Sports radio authority The Ticket is hosting a free Patriots vs. Rams watch party at The Bomb Factory on Sunday. Doors open at 3 p.m. and there will be food and drink specials all day. The venue’s giant screen always draws a crowd on game day, so reserve your spot here.
House of Blues has a watch party with two big screens, a live DJ, and discounted drinks and appetizers. Admission is free with RSVPbefore 4:30 p.m. and $5 between 4:30 p.m. and 5 p.m.
Three Links Super Chili Bowl IV is on Sunday, so you can watch the game on the big screen while judging an array of meaty stews. Matt Hillyer of Eleven Hundred Springs will also give a performance during the cook off. Doors open at 3 p.m. and admission is free.
If you want to enjoy a wide assortment of snacks during the Super Bowl, Legacy Hall’s watch party might be your best bet. The Plano food hall will have happy hour from 3 p.m. to the end of the game, and there are more than 20 food stalls to choose from.
Four Corners Brewing Co. starts its watch party at 2 p.m. with food from LUCK, trivia, and pregame festivities. Admission is free and doors open at noon.
White Rock Alehouse & Brewery has a Superb Owl Party with prizes and food and drink specials starting at 5 p.m.
Dot’s Hop House & Cocktail Courtyard is teaming up with Bumble for a Super Bowl viewing party starting at 5:30 p.m. Show your Bumble app for a free drink and Bumble merch.
Watch the game at Doc B’s and enjoy happy hour specials all day ($2 off bottled beer, $4 off draft beer, $5 off house spirits, $6 off wine and champagne).
Scout at The Statler’s watch party is all about the food deals. $1 wings, $1 sliders, $1 off draft beers, $5 wells, and $20 buckets of beer. Plus: ping pong, pool, and foosball.
Perle on Maple, the newly renovated bar inside The Stoneleigh Hotel, is offering $4 draft beers and discounted bar bites starting at noon.
Watch the game and play some bingo to win beer and prizes at On Rotation. Party starts at kickoff.
Noble Rey Brewing will have the game will be playing on all of the breweries TVs. Oh, and there’s a potluck (bring your favorite dip!), complimentary hot dogs, and plenty of beer.
Go to Stan’s Blue Note to nosh on half-priced food from 4:30 p.m. until 6 p.m. and enjoy happy hour specials from 4:30 until the end of the game.
Bonus: MUTTS Canine Cantina (for the Puppy Bowl): Bring your fur child to this dog park this Sunday from 1 p.m. until 4 p.m. to watch the Puppy Bowl.
LOVE all that is going on in the D.FW! Need more info? Just call us, Let’s Chat! 214.769.2142
Think of it as a tasting menu, for movies.
Orchestrating a great film festival is an art form. It’s also a strategic and financial nightmare to pull off. From wrestling over film availability to reviewing (hopefully) hundreds of submissions; keeping a cohesive feel to it all while still showing timeliness and diversity. It’s a wonder how our area successfully supports even a half-dozen of these suckers.
It’s positively jaw-dropping that we’re home to 25 of them.
This weekend, film lovers across North Texas are invited to enjoy the riches of so much labor. Best of Fests serves as an experimental celebration of our area’s diverse film programming — think of it as a tasting menu, for movies. 22 of DFW’s 25 film festivals have submitted entries that best embody their programming vibe, so you can literally see what you’ve been missing.
“To have [so many festivals] come together in this way,” says Best of Fests co-publicist John Wildman, “I’m honestly not aware that this has ever been done before.”
The idea to create this cinematic sampler platter was born by Emily Hargrove and Michael Cain, who local film nerds know from their contributions to DIFF (Dallas International Film Festival), Dallas Film Society, and EarthxFilm fest, among others. The pair noticed overlapping programming schedules, little logistical things that split audiences and news media from focusing on one showcase at a time. So, they wrangled all of the area’s festival programmers into the same room.
First, an annual calendar was created so that each fest would have its own time to shine. Later, Hargrove and Cain proposed an even more radical idea: A chimerical showcase designed to raise all cinematic ships. And to make it interesting, each festival would share their distinct voice in one screening, be it a short or a feature. In addition to cross-pollinating the audiences of larger and smaller, religious and ethnic, or Dallas and Fort Worth festivals into all the available film festival offerings, it’s also the ultimate movie dare: What film sums up your programming’s personality?
Now that Best of Fests is a reality and set to run this Thursday through Sunday, we get to see what everyone chose to flex their form.
For example, DIFF, the area’s most robust film festival, has submitted Tejano, a film about a man who, in order to fund his grandfather’s care, breaks his own arm to smuggle a cocaine cast across the Mexico border. The film was shot largely in Texas border towns, world premiered at DIFF, showcased the work of a new voice (director David Blue Garcia), and won the festival’s audience award for narrative feature. It’s also a story relevant to this cultural moment in time, which is something DIFF’s programmers are diligent about tapping into. Thursday, 7:00 p.m. at Texas Theatre. Screens with the short film IMAGO by local filmmaker/producer Liz Cardenas, presented by Flicks by Chicks.
But each festival is different. From deep dives into forgotten historical moments (1950: The Nationalist Uprising, presented by Festival de Cine Latino Americano) to inspirational narrative works (Steps, by Denton Black Film Festival) to Larry McMurtry adaptations (“Lonesome Dove: Episode One”, presented by Crossroads of Texas Film and Music Festival) – there’s something here for you, your freaky best friend, your action-film-loving dad and your lion-hearted mom. Here are a few more that you might want to check out.
Over at Oak Cliff Film Fest, they’ve chosen Relaxer, the latest cerebrally layered piece by Michigander Joel Potrykus. The film tips a hat to Buñuel’s The Exterminating Angel. But here, a gamer is trapped on a sofa, challenged to beat an unbeatable level of Pac-Man while Y2K looms. There’s milk chugging. Urine drinking. A sewage waterfall. And a truly sharp, surrealist take on shifting eras at the close of the century. It’s philosophical AF, and this is the only place you can see it until Oscilloscope’s March release. Sunday, 4:00 p.m. at Cinépolis, Victory Park. Screens with the short existential crisis/dying squirrel/teddy bear t-shirt/film, Bobby Miller’s End Times, also presented by the Oak Cliff Film Festival. *Might not be mom-friendly.
If Train to Busan left you feeling like you’d vaped Dexedrine and you want to feel that way again, see Asian Film Festival of Dallas’pick Rampant, which was born from the same studio. This Night Demon/Zombie/Kung Fu flick packs unrelenting action and some very cool hats into 129 minutes of running time. But more than that, it gives a universal entry point to AFFD’s style of programming and a chance to see this one the way it deserves: BIG. Friday, 10 p.m. at Alamo Cedars. Screens with Arianna Cadeddu’s short film, Only Child, presented by Pegasus Film Festival.
3 Stars Jewish Cinema will show a film that broke through to mainstream audiences in 2017 with The Last Laugh, the funniest film ever made at Nazis’ expense. It features interviews with dozens of Jewish comedians, each asked to find humor in comedy’s ultimate taboo, the Holocaust. Sunday, 6:00 p.m. at Cinépolis, Victory Park.
Dallas has relied on Bart Weiss’ Dallas VideoFest for exceptional documentaries that expose social injustice for 32 years — and he’s not about to disappoint here. Weiss’ Best of Fests pick brings local legislative corruption in to focus with The Big Buy: How Tom DeLay Stole Congress, a doc that examines the Texas Congressman’s criminal investigation and efforts to redraw congressional districts. Sunday, 7 p.m. at Cinépolis Victory Park.Screens with Lizette Barrera’s short film, Mosca, which is also presented by Dallas VideoFest.
Fort Worth’s Lone Star Film Festival brings The Last Whistle — “a big crowd pleaser,” according to BoF’s co-publicist John Wildman. Whistle centers around a high school football coach who’s drive to win isn’t softened when one of his players collapses on the field. “I don’t think you can watch that movie, unless you’re the toughest of cookies, without feeling something,” says Wildman. Friday, 5 p.m. at Alamo Cedars. Screens with Emily Miller’s short Louise, presented by Pegasus Film Festival.
Another interesting Fort Worth selection is Devil’s Path, by Q Cinema, our regional LGBTQ film festival. I’d like to point out that Q Cinema didn’t pick a squishy romantic film to express their style. They didn’t pick an important, but tedious, documentary to define them. Hell no. They picked a goddamn thriller about evil deeds on a cruising trail in the woods. Sweet. Save me a seat. [Saturday, 3 p.m. at Studio Movie Grill (35 & Northwest Highway). Screens with Ellery Marshall’s “bathroom bill” short, Transcending Politics, presented by Pegasus Film Festival.]
Women Texas Film Festival shows off its style with a true crime doc that reads more like fiction. Abducted In Plain Sight examines an Idaho family who’s 12-year-old daughter was taken by a close neighbor in 1974. Then, things get really crazy. There’s a plan for alien baby-making, cult-y deceits, and a whole lot of family secrets to unpack. Women Texas is the state’s only fully-fledged festival dedicated to showcasing work that is written, produced, edited or shot by women. Friday, 8 p.m. at Alamo Cedars. Screens with the short film Phonies, presented by Pegasus Film Festival.
EarthxFilm carves out its design with a screening of Matthew Testa’s The Human Element. This deep dive into mankind’s effects on this planet are shown through the lens of World Press Photo Award Winner James Balog. It’s a journey to show how our actions affect the world, and how unprecedented fires, poisonous air, struggling coal mines and rising water levels affect us in return. Friday, 7:30 p.m. at Alamo Cedars. Screens with Montana Brock’s short, The Last Spring, also from EarthxFilm.
If you’re a war movie lover, Sons of the Flag’s Stars & Stripes Film Festival has you covered with 2012’s Act of Valor. This festival is interesting in that they blend classic battlefield films with contemporary military films, all to help support military, veteran and first responder burn survivors and their families. So, see the film, and if you like what they’re about, get involved. Saturday, 12 p.m. at Studio Movie Grill(35 & Northwest Highway). Screens with short film No Name, by Pegasus Film Festival.
Additionally, you’ll find selections by Czech That Film, Denton Black Film Festival, South Asian Film Festival, Thin Line Film Festival, Dallas Jewish Film Festival, Deep in the Heart Film Festival, Festival de Cine Latino Americano, Flicks by Chicks, Fort Worth Independent Film Showcase, and Frame4Frame.
And, if you go all four days you’ll get to spend time in, and figure out your favorite snacks at, four different local theaters, beginning with the Oak Cliff arthouse staple Texas Theatre, then the Cedars branch of Alamo Drafthouse on Friday, up to Studio Movie Grill’s NW Highway/35 branch on Saturday and closing it out on Sunday at the still-new Cinépolis in Victory Plaza on Sunday.
Best of Fests runs from Thursday, January 10 to Sunday, January 13. See the schedule, make your movie plan and buy tickets at BestofFests.org. Individual tickets cost $10. Festival passes cost $50. And students with a valid ID get in free.
New Year’s Resolutions are flowing…Be sure to include your Home.
Here are some lovely ideas for a Re-Fresh!
Want more ideas? Just call…Let’s Chat – 214.769.2142
At the start of every year, we set goals for our health, well-being and even finances. But what about for the home?
These home-improvement resolutions will help make your home cleaner, more gorgeous and enjoyable in 2019.
Take the time post-holidays to clear items you no longer wear, use or love. Start room-by-room to keep it manageable, stay organized to avoid duplication and donate any excess to charity. Lightening your home’s load will make it look instantly cleaner and support less-fortunate families in your community with those items taking up precious living space.
Divvy up daily and weekly tasks for maximum tidiness. Complete chores daily, like dishes in the dishwasher, dirty clothes in the basket, clean clothes in the closet — everything in its place. Clean the entire house weekly with ease using a portable cleaning caddy stocked with supplies, an apron for easily accessible tools and focusing on one type of cleaning task at a time.
Safety + Efficiency
Ensure your home is safe by replacing smoke and carbon monoxide detector batteries. Don’t forget to test for radon and check bathroom, attic and dryer vents, also. Lower your bills and lessen your footprint by installing LED bulbs and low-flow showerheads, adjust or schedule thermostats, run only full loads of dishes and laundry, power down or unplug items not in use, water less and compost more — to name a few tips.
Rearrange to Entertain
Get a fresh new look for hosting friends with a few updates. Adding plants is a cost-effective update that also helps clean the air. Pick an accent color for your entertaining space and add it throughout with a vibrant rug or a stylish throw pillow. And, of course, the timeless trick of rearranging furniture brings new energy to any space.
Celebrate the holiday season in North Texas at one of these family-friendly holiday events. Happy holidays!
Want to find out more about the Great Happenings around the BIG D? Just contact us at 214.769.2142 – Let’s Chat!
Christmas in the Square at Frisco Square –Until Dec. 31
Take a walk through the Frisco Square and enjoy the largest choreographed holiday lights and music show in North Texas. The light show runs daily from 6 to 10 p.m. and there’s an outdoor ice rink where you can skate until your heart is content.
Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Gardens’ The 12 Days of Christmas – Until Dec. 31
Celebrate the holidays like never before at the Dallas Arboretum’s extraordinary Christmas display. From 6 to 9 p.m. on select evenings, the Arboretum lights up with 12 elaborate Victorian-style gazebos inspired by the beloved Christmas carol. Each display is 25-feet tall and filled with beautifully detailed characters and animals.
Dallas Symphony Orchestra’s Christmas Pops Concerts –Dec. 7 to 16
Complete your holiday bucket list at the DSO’s annual Christmas pops concerts featuring the Dallas Symphony Chorus. Head to the Meyerson Symphony Center to enjoy live renditions of your favorite holiday tunes.
Dallas Zoo Lights –Until Jan. 1
This Dallas Zoo spectacular has quickly become a must-see this season. After the animals head in for the evening, the zoo transforms into a winter wonderland with over 1 million twinkling lights illuminating ZooNorth throughout the holiday season. Discover realistic silk-covered lanterns in the shape of your favorite animals. You’ll also enjoy entertainment by local performers, crafts and tasty winter treats, including s’mores, hot chocolate and gourmet donuts.
Holiday Carriage Rides –Until Dec. 30
Take a tour of Highland Park and Plano’s Deerfield neighborhood with a festive carriage ride. Whether it’s date night or fun for the whole family, a leisurely ride to look at Christmas lights is a lovely holiday tradition. Different carriages are available to accommodate your party size and budget.
Holidays at the Heard – Dec. 14 and 15
Enjoy the beauty of the holiday season in nature at McKinney’s Heard Natural Science Museum and Wildlife Sanctuary. From 6:30 to 9 p.m., enjoy lights and holiday décor along a half-mile nature trail, or stop for a photo with Father Christmas and Mother Nature. Grab a holiday treat and enjoy live entertainment at this family-friendly holiday event.
Mannheim Steamroller Concert –Dec. 28
Mark your calendars for a few days after Christmas when the widely celebrated new-age music group Mannheim Steamroller takes the stage at Bass Performance Hall in Fort Worth. Tickets start at $49, and you won’t want to miss the one-night opportunity to hear your favorite modern renditions of classic Christmas tunes.
Panther Island Ice Skating –Until Jan. 14
Take a trip to Fort Worth’s only outdoor skating rink, Panther Island, to join in some “cool” holiday excitement. The rink operates seven days a week, including all holidays, and a $12 ticket includes skate rental and tax.
Six Flags Holiday in the Park – Until Dec. 30
Experience the magic of the holidays at Six Flags Over Texas during this year’s Holiday in the Park. Enjoy fun for the whole family with rides, story time with Mrs. Claus, live entertainment and visits with Santa.
Texas Ballet Theater’s The Nutcracker –Select dates inDecember
Take part in a beloved holiday tradition and enjoy a live performance of Texas Ballet Theater’s The Nutcracker. This age-old ballet will delight you with a story of Clara and a dreamland filled with heroic battles and sweet treats. Performances take place Dec. 7 to 24 at Fort Worth’s Bass Performance Hall.