Big Apple + Little Sister = Best Day

I go to New York every few weeks, and I write about my visits every few years (including here and here). This week, I had the pleasure of spending a day in the Big Apple with my youngest sister Roxane who was visiting from Switzerland. Here is what our perfect day together looked like.

Mimosas at the Loews Hotel

On Park in mid-town, this is one of the most civilized places in NYC, whether for coffee, lunch, or drinks. I love it for meetings, I love it alone when I need to catch up on emails or write, and I love it for everything in between.

A facial at Heyday Upper West Side

Despite family businesses involving a spa and skin care, Roxane is not a facial aficionado… so I had to gift her a Heyday facial. Not surprisingly, she loved everything about it – the setting, the treatment itself, the post-facial glow, the wonderful team members. No better way to start a day in the city!

A stroll through Nordstrom 57th street

Both of our first times in this gorgeous new store, we were in awe of the beauty offering. Not just the ground floor beauty store (which was packed with shoppers by the way), but also the first floor Beauty Services area. Featuring various “shops in shop” including Heyday (yes, they are in all the right places), Drybar, Face Gym and more, as well as wonderful niche brands, this area gave off a cool, chic, inviting vibe that made you want to shop and treat yourself.

A haircut at Fourteen Jay 

Roxane is addicted to her short haircut, and to Aveda. When she asked me for the best Aveda salon in the City, I had to recommend Fourteen Jay, a project my friend (and celebrity hairstylist) Frank Rizzieri was involved in creating.

Apero at the “new” Pastis

Pastis reopening last year after a five-year hiatus was to me some of the happiest 2019 news. Breakfast, lunch, or dinner there still feels like a party, something utterly “New York” that can’t be replicated anywhere else. A must.

We didn’t have a chance to visit all of the places on my list… here are a few left for her next visit.

The bar at Morandi

Another Keith McNally creation, Morandi in the West Village is on my list of places to try.

An afternoon at Great Jones Spa

One day I will make the time to have a long and perfect massage at this legendary spa, and I will take advantage of their amazing amenities, including the River Rock Sauna, the Chakra Light Steam Room, the Jacuzzi, and the Cold Plunge. One day…

Four men I can't live without…

…As in, the men who keep me beautiful. They each make me feel good because they make me look good, and I am grateful to have them in my life!

My dermatologist, my father: Dr. Luigi L. PollaForever Institut

Together since: 1977

It starts with my father, of course! As I recently shared with Glamour Magazine, he is the source of all of my skin care knowledge and good skin habits. And the only one whom I entrust my face to when it comes to Botox.


My hair whisperer: Frank Rizzieri, Rizzieri Salon & Spa

Together since: 2014

Other than blow-outs (see below), I was never one for hair cuts, hair styles, or hair extensions. That is, until I met Frank Rizzieri – then all that changed. I now drive 3.5 hours to Marlton, NJ, for my hair appointments, because he is worth it. I never look as good as I do walking out of his salon.


My blow-out guru: Enver Coban, Georgetown Salon & Spa

Together since: 2002

Enver came into my life thanks to the recommendation of my friend Pirooz Sarshar. Having just moved to DC, I asked Pirooz who gave the best blow-out in town. “Go to the Turks,” he said (himself of Turkish origin). And so I did. I met Enver when he was working at George at the Four Seasons, and followed him to Georgetown Salon and Spa. He still gives me the best blow-out, in under 30 minutes.


My eyebrow master: Erwin Gomez, Karma Salon

Together since: 2002

I can’t recall who recommended I go to Erwin for my eyebrows – if it was a best friend, or perhaps Allure Magazine, but I am forever grateful. I get compliments on my eyebrows weekly, and I have him to thank. The maintenance is an investment, but Erwin is worth every penny. And when, one day in 2014, he told me: “After more than 10 years, your eyebrows are finally looking the way they should!” I didn’t know if I should cry or celebrate!


BeautyView: Ana Marie Rizzieri, celebrity makeup artist

I finally met Ana Marie Rizzieri just a couple of weeks ago, at a birthday party in Tampa, FL, of all places. It was time… I had heard about her from industry colleagues and in particular from her husband Frank (owner of many beauty businesses, including Rizzieri Salon and Spa, where one can find Alchimie Forever…) who kept telling me that he could tell his wife, a celebrity makeup artist with a passion for skin care, and I would really enjoy each other’s company… he wasn’t wrong. I had high expectations after everything he told me about her, and I was not disappointed: she is even more beautiful and fascinating in person…

AP: What city were you born in? AMR: Camden, NJ.

AP: What city to do you live in? AMR: Moorestown, NJ.

AP: What is your middle name? AMR: None, just Ana Marie.

AP: What is your astrological sign? AMR: Scorpio.

AP: What is something about you most people don’t know? AMR: I am a great florist.

AP: What is your most prized possession? AMR: My two sons.

AP: If you could have dinner with the person of your choice, who would it be? AMR: Tom Ford

AP: Describe your fashion style in three words maximum. AMR: Classic, simple and expensive.

AP: Do you wear a watch? If yes, what model? AMR: Yes, a Rolex.

AP: Diamonds or pearls? AMR: Diamonds.

AP: What is your #1 beauty secret? AMR: Drinking tons of water and monthly facials.

AP: What fragrance do you wear? AMR: Tom ford’s tobacco vanille.

AP: Botox or not? AMR: Not.

AP: Hair color: natural or not? AMR: Not.

AP: What are your special diet tips, if any? AMR: I eat all organic and add chlorophyll to my water.

AP: What do you do for exercise? AMR: I work out at the gym every day.

AP: What are three things that you always have in your fridge? AMR: Wine, milk and eggs.

AP: What is your cocktail of choice? AMR: Red wine and more red wine.

AP: What is your secret to work/life balance?  AMR: Love what you do.

AP: How many miles do you fly per year on average? AMR: 50,000 miles per year.

AP: What are your three top tips for travel?  AMR: Water, nuts and great trashy magazines,

AP: 3 songs on your ipod right now. AMR: Anything and everything by Beyonce, Lykke Li and Rihanna.

AP: What book are you reading right now? AMR: Walking Disaster by Jamie McGuire.

AP: Quote to live by. AMR:The face is the mirror of the mind, and eyes without speaking confess the secrets of the heart.

AP: What is your worst pet peeve? AMR: Sloppiness.

AP: What time do you usually wake up in the morning, and how many hours of sleep do you usually get? AMR: I get up every morning at 6 am. The length of my nights vary…

AP: What is your favorite thing about the beauty industry? AMR: Foundation.

AP: Least favorite thing. AMR: When sales people lie.

AP: Who is your mentor? AMR: My husband Frank Rizzieri.

AP: Words of advice for young women starting their careers today. AMR: Again— love what you do. If you love what you do, you never feel like you are really working.