Celebrating New Year’s Eve Around The World

New Year’s Eve happens to be one of my favorite holidays.  It involves self-reflection, a moment of bliss, and a commitment to renewal all wrapped into one night.  There is something so miraculous about millions of people joining together to countdown the last ten seconds of the year with the anticipation of a brighter and enlightened new beginning.  No matter what part of the world New Year’s is celebrated, traditions are honored with equal enthusiasm.  Along with the glitz and the glam of how you spend your New Years Eve, I have come to realize the best way to celebrate is to surround yourself with the ones you love the most.

At Capella Washington, D.C., Georgetown, our Capella family hails from many different countries and nations, each with their own New Year’s traditions.  Here are some of the interesting ways New Year’s Eve around the world is celebrated, as told by my Capella Washington, D.C. colleagues:

Iran by Cameron Nezam: Pastry delicacies are a main focal point in celebrating the New Year.  Families  bake goodies and treat one another to desserts as a way of ensuring a “sweet” New Year.

Cameron Nezam - Director of Diplomatic and Group Sales

Switzerland by Kelly Schneider: Lake Zurich offers the perfect backdrop setting for a magical display of fireworks.  Over 200,000 people gather together to celebrate with live music and entertainment and a sense of community.

Kelly Schneider - Catering Sales Manager

Belgium by Marie Belaen: A thoughtful gesture of gifting your loved ones with small presents as a token of good luck for the upcoming year is often observed in Brussels.

Marie Belaen - Sales and Marketing Intern

Philippines by Michael Katigbak: Part of the fun of getting ready for New Year’s Eve is collecting twelve round fruits.  Each one signifies a month of the year with the round shape being a metaphor for the year coming full circle.  In the tropics the fruit can be a lychee, but with tropical fruits harder to come by in the U.S., grapes are a perfect stand-in.

Michael Katigbak - Director of Sales and Marketing

Cultures and traditions vary geographically but each one, at its root, is meant to bring happiness, prosperity and good luck in the New Year.  If you happen to be celebrating in Washington D.C. this year, Capella Washington, D.C., Georgetown is having a grand New Year’s Eve celebration.  The event starts with cocktails in The Rye Bar, leading into a special five-course champagne dinner hosted by our Executive Chef, Frank Ruta and Master Sommelier, Keith Goldston in The Grill Room, and finally dancing and musical entertainment into the New Year on our Rooftop Bar & Lounge.  I hope to see you there!

Rooftop Lounge

For more information about our Rooftop New Year’s Eve Party, please email our Personal Assistant team at pa.dc@capellahotels.com or call 202.617.2416.  Wishing you and yours a wonderful holiday season!

Get To Know Marie: Sales and Marketing Intern

Recently, I had the distinct pleasure of sitting down with Marie, our wonderful Capella Washington, D.C., Georgetown Sales and Marketing Intern.  Marie joins the Capella family from Australia and has very quickly made her lasting mark with guests and in D.C.  Coming from a family of hospitality professionals, Marie brings with her a wealth of knowledge and experience.

Marie Belean - Sales and Marketing Intern

Tell me about yourself. You are joining us for a 6-month internship from abroad, how has your transition to D.C. been?

I studied hotel management for three years in Brussels in which I gained a Bachelor degree.  During that time I did two internships.  The first internship was during my second year at Marriott Brussels, Belgium in HR and the second one was at Hyatt Regency located in Perth, Australia as an F&B attendant in Event Services.  During my time in Australia I decided to study a second degree, (International Business and Hotel Management) at the International College of Hotel Management in Adelaide.  In order to successfully finish my degree I have to do a 6 months industry placement which brought me to D.C.  So far it has been a very smooth transition although it required a lot of preparations to move to the United States.  This city and country is very different from Australia, but D.C has a lot to offer and I am looking forward to discovering more of its beauty in the next couple of months.

You have a special connection with Capella, can you tell me about this connection and why you are an admirer of the Capella brand?

My brother, Thomas Belaen, used to work for the Capella Hotel and Resorts in Cabo San Lucas together with our General Manager, Mr. Bustamante.  He always spoke with such high passion about his work and how excited he was to be a part of the Capella family.  During one of my holidays in Mexico I got the opportunity to visit and was extremely impressed with the service the staff had provided.  From that moment I knew I wanted to gain experience within Capella Hotels and Resorts.  Because of the connection with Mr. Bustamante, I was able to apply for an internship in D.C.

Sales and Marketing Intern

What do you love most about being a Sales and Marketing Intern? Are there any projects in particular that are especially appealing to you?

The Sales and Marketing department is new to me so every project is exciting and interesting.  There is always so much to learn and everyone on the team at Capella Washington D.C., Georgetown is available to help me get the most out of my internship.

What are your current top recommendations in Washington, D.C.? From museums, to dining, to a night out?

I have been here for a little over two months, and I still want to discover so much more about this fascinating city, but I love Georgetown and everything it has the offer.  I love walking around the National Mall with it’s impressive monuments and museums.  During the weekends, I find myself venturing off to DuPont Circle, as it has a lot to offer in dining and nightlife options, but my absolute favorite restaurant is Barcelona on 14th Street.

What advice can you give to guests traveling to Capella Washington, D.C., Georgetown from around the world?

The best advice I can give to guests is to try and get to most out of their visit.  There are so many exciting things to do and see in D.C. and its surrounding areas.  Capella Washington D.C., Georgetown offers many exciting tours and our Personal Assistants will be more than happy to give suggestions and arrange anything you may need to discover the city.

What do your future plans hold?

My main priority is to graduate in September 2016 from ICHM.  After that, I would love to continue working for Capella Hotels and Resorts and expand my knowledge and experience through this amazing hotel chain.

Thank you, Marie for sharing your D.C. experience thus far! I look forward to hearing more!

Fall Cocktails: Capella D.C.’s Jack Rose Cocktail

It’s finally time to breathe in the crisp autumn air! Goodbye sun-kissed tans, sipping rosé on rooftops, spending weekends at the beach, and hello pumpkin spice lattes, scarves, boots, and spending cozy nights by the fireplace. Fall is especially gorgeous in D.C. and wonderful time to visit the city.  I look forward to seeing the beauty and natural surroundings of the C&O canal from Capella Washington, D.C., Georgetown.

With the seasons changing, , it’s time to switch out my cocktail list and introduce some cool weather concoctions featuring the flavors of the season.  Rye Bar Bartender Cecilio knew exactly how to indulge my love for fall when he made me a Jack Rose Cocktail. The combination of citrus and pomegranate were so full of sugar and spice, that I knew I had to share the recipe with you.  Luckily, Cecilio gave me an easy, “do-it-yourself” version that you can make at home for your friends and family.

Jack Rose Cocktail

Jack Rose Set Up

Ingredients:

  • Laird Apple Jack Liquor -2 oz.
  • Lime Juice – ¾ oz.
  • Grenadine – ¾ oz.

Directions:

Step One: Combine all ingredients in a shaker

Cecilio step 1

Step Two: Shake the shaker for approx. 30 seconds, or until the shaker is frosted and cold

Cecilio stirred

Step Three: Strain the mixture into a martini glass

Jack Rose Cocktail

Finito! Now you are all set to fall into fall!  If you’re able to visit Capella Washington, D.C., Georgetown, Cecilio and the team will be sure to have one of these delicious cocktails ready for you in the Rye Bar. I would love to see you share your version of the Jack Rose Cocktail on social media!  Or tell me about some of your favorite fall cocktails.  Just be sure to tag @CapellaDC so I can share your photos with the rest of my followers!

Discover the Capella Washington, D.C. Farmers Market In Georgetown

I am beyond thrilled to share with all of you Capella Washington, D.C., Georgetown’s newest experience – our very own Farmers Market!  Being an advocate of local farmers and promoting farm-fresh, locally sourced, and seasonal produce, I am extremely proud that we are able to launch this True Capella experience for everyone in D.C.!

CFM 1

With The Grill Room’s renowned Executive Chef, Frank Ruta has partnered with Northern Neck Farms of Northern Virginia to create this Farmers Market in Georgetown.  Our mission is to educate the local community about fresh food, environmental issues, and provide opportunities for local farmers. The hope is to build a platform that will help promote a healthy lifestyle for all, while also providing tantalizing products.

David Blair, owner of Northern Neck Farms, shares, “We enjoy experiencing the fresh produce that we bring to all our restaurants we serve, especially The Grill Room. Being part of the Farmers Market at Capella is beyond anything we expected and we look forward to engaging with everyone in the heart of Georgetown.”

CFM2

The Farmers Market at Capella will run from 9am – 1pm on the2nd and 4th Saturday of each month through the end of October.  Guests and locals can expect to see fresh blackberries, eggplant, cucumbers, seasonal tomatoes, and so much more!  You will find the Farmers Market next to the hotel, along the historic C&O Canal.  Come spend your Saturday morning with Capella Washington, D.C., Georgetown and enjoy the local food movement.

cfm3

SAVE THE DATE:

 The Farmers Market at Capella D.C. will continue to be held on the following Saturdays:

  • September 19, 2015
  • October 3, 2015
  • October 17, 2015
  • October 31, 2015

cfm 5

cfm 4

If you haven’t had a chance to visit, e sure to mark your calendar for the remaining dates of the season.  I am looking forward to the community coming together to share their photos and recipes with everyone.  Don’t forget to tag @CapellaDC so that I can share your Farmers Market fun with the rest of the community!

Take An Insider Tour Of Georgetown

If you’ve visited Georgetown, you’ve seen the quaint cobblestone streets and know of the rich history this charming D.C. neighborhood holds.  I have always been a very big fan of the beautiful waterfront neighborhood that is unlike any other in the Washington, D.C. area.  Capella Washington, D.C., Georgetown is fortunate enough to be located right in the heart, next to the historic C&O Canal and a short walk to the Georgetown Waterfront.  For those who have yet to visit D.C. and Georgetown, I wanted to share with you a tour of some of my favorite things to do in this beautiful neighborhood.

I invite you to take a tour of Georgetown with me as I visit my favorite 4 places on a Saturday!

Baked and Wired#1 – Visit Baked & Wired
If you’re like me and you need to start your morning off with an energizing cup of coffee, I have just the place for you!  Family owned artsy coffee shop and bakery located on Thomas Jefferson Street has the best espresso drinks and cupcakes to match.  Choose from over 20 options of creatively baked options while enjoying the local ambiance.

Georgetown Waterfront#2 – Stroll Down The Georgetown Waterfront
When you are all fueled up on coffee, make your way down one block to the Georgetown Waterfront to enjoy boat watching and family fun water sports.  Whether you get behind the wheel of a kayak and steer through the Potomac River or relax on the steps leading to the Waterfront, you’ll be sure to enjoy your time in the sun!

#3 – Visit Dumbarton Oaks
Treat your eyes to a beautiful renowned landscape gardens by visiting Dumbarton Oaks.  Enriched with history from the early 1800’s, the home offers rooms of original art from different eras.

fried duck egg burger#4 – Indulge in a burger at The Grill Room
After walking around town, feast on one of my favorite burgers in The Grill Room made by Executive Chef Frank Ruta, the Fried Duck Egg Burger!  It will satisfy your every craving.

I love sharing the gem of Georgetown with everyone that comes to visit.  There is so much to see and experience while you’re in Washington, D.C., being in the Nation’s Capital has all the advantages any traveler would look for.  I would love to see pictures of your D.C. travels and Georgetown finds.  Share your photos with me at @CapellaDC so I can share them with our community!

Capella Washington D.C.’s Gin Cobbler Cocktail

Nothing says “summer!” like a refreshing iced cocktail on a warm day. Here at Capella Washington, D.C., Georgetown, our bartenders at The Rye Bar and our Rooftop Bar and Lounge are especially known for their delicious and creative creations. In my opinion, you can do no wrong when it comes to ice cold beverages during the summer, but I wanted to try something unique and different than what I typically make at home.  I knew just the person in The Rye Bar to go to for an easy and fun recipe.

Bartender Andrew always knows just what to suggest and this time he didn’t hesitate in offering a Gin Cobbler Cocktail.  As soon as I tried it, I knew I wanted to serve it at my summer cookout.  Fortunately, our bartenders love to share and I can now pass the delicious recipe along to you.

Gin Cobbler Cocktail

Ingredients:
1½ ounces Gin (The Rye Bar uses London Dry)
½ ounce Orange Curacao (The Rye Bar uses Pure Ferrand)
¼ ounces Simple Syrup
½ Wheel slice of an orange
½ Wheel slice of a lemon
Crushed Ice

Ingredients - Gin Cobbler

Directions:

1. Combine all liquors in a julep cup.

pouring cocktail

2. Lightly muddle the orange and lemon wheel slices together.

Andrew - Muddle

3. Pour mixture over the muddled fruit.

Andrew - Gin Cobbler finished cocktail

4. Fill glass with crushed ice and garnish with mint, berries, and an orange wheel slice.

GIN COBBLER

Et Voila! Now you have a refreshing Gin Cobbler Cocktail, perfect for any summertime occasion! If you want to visit Capella Washington, D.C., Georgetown, I’ll be sure to save you one of these while we are relaxing and soaking up the Georgetown city views from our gorgeous Rooftop Bar and Lounge! Otherwise, give our recipe a try at home and share your version with us on social media @CapellaDC so I can share them with our community! Hope you’re all enjoying your summer!