Scene & Heard | Summer holiday


Scene & Heard | Summer holiday


The summer holidays feel somewhat like a lifetime ago – what, with signs of Christmas already in stores and a hint of winter weather starting to make its way to Dubai – but we realised recently the the team hadn’t yet shared our ‘scene & heard’ snippets from our various summer adventures across South Africa & Europe. Well, you might have followed along for Kath’s South African adventures via Instagram or the post she published about her stay in the Cape (be sure to see that if you haven’t already), but the rest of the team had some great escapes and new finds that we wanted to share too. Better late than never, right?

Every other summer we escape the Dubai summer to the Netherlands, our second home away from home. The other summers we travel back home to Curacao. This year it was our “Europe” summer again. And although we tend to go to our old favourites – because we are just like that – we also sometimes stumble upon new favourites! So a short and sweet round up for the different places we visited can be summarised as follows…

Cultural: The kids have actually started to like going to museums, so we visited Het Rijksmuseum and Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam, Rijksmuseum Boerhaave in Leiden and Het Voorlinden in Wassenaar. 

Outdoor play: Give my boys a playground and they are happy, so every time we needed them to shed some energy we either went to De Noordermarkt  or Het Vondelpark. And if we would go there by tram or metro, I was crowned Mother of the Year. We also rented a small bungalow in Noordwijk and made it to the beach every day at Tulum

Shopping: De Negenstraatjes are nine little streets with different boutiques where we always stroll through when we are on my way to Khasto – the store our Nana works. In these streets you find international brands, but also cool local ones. We always end up at Beadies to make bracelets for the boys. And we end our stroll at IJscuypje the best ice cream in town. We love De Utrechtse Straat, which has a similar feel, with JAN  and – fun concept stores for home, adults and kids – and my old time favourite Sissy Boy – where I buy most of my boys clothes. 

Eat and Drink: The lunch at Dignata Hoftuin behind The Hermitage Amsterdam never disappoints, and in the summer it’s even more amazing! We had a awesome night at Cecconi’s in Soho House Amsterdam and a good lunch catchup with some extra drama on top at Lion Noir when I chained my bike to my friends bike without telling her and then she had to leave earlier then me… I’ll just say I was so happy they didn’t throw my rental bike in the canal.

I managed to escape the dreaded Dubai heat and headed to cooler South African temperatures for a few days. I was lucky enough to be home at the same time of one of the biggest African designs shows – 100% Design. I’m a real sucker for design shows and was curious to see what the current trends were. Two stands which stood out for me and first being Takk Furniture, their business card was an actual Allen key that the nerd in me loved it. But enough on the Allen key, their products were so stylish. All items come flat packed in solid timber with metal panels that come in 8 different colours. You can also customize to suit your desired space. I was obsessed with the baby pink – think kids room or as they displayed it as pink gin dream. I will take either to be honest. 

The second stand was called Wheatley with their slogan “Whoever.Whatever”. This is a modular collection from Benjamin David Furniture. Their whole concept was to create shelving displays in multiple colours that were so easily adjustable that new looks and configurations could be created in minutes. I loved how easily one can adjust the heights by simply slotting it into the grooves placed roughly every 10cm. This could be very helpful for your children’s rooms or possibly a private home office where the look can continuously change to suit your mood or needs.

Mila and I were sticking it out in Dubai for most of the summer and while hiding from the sunlight like a vampires, we and I discovered some cool spots.  

OliOli: This is probably no newby to most of you, but as I only recently became a toddler mom I realized the struggle to survive with a little one during Dubai summer. So we decided to head over to OliOli to see what the hype is about. Located in Al Quoz, the facility is spread over two floors and consist of eight uniquely themed galleries containing more than 40 hands-on activities. The facility equipment was created and inspired by leading educators, development psychologists and artists, the result, a museum of awesome that is so attractive it’s difficult for adults not get involvedFrom the moment you enter, there’s a sense of calm but also overwhelming excitement. In short, we absolutely loved this place and we will be back again and again.

White + The Bear: This new kid on the blog is a collaboration between mumpreneur Hana Al Mulla and celebrity chef and best-selling author Annabel Karmel. From the food to the furniture, every little detail has been designed with your little one in mind.

We took a quick trip to SA for our little bambino’s first birthday. And to celebrate this exciting milestone I ordered some goodies from LunaBerry, a Pretoria-based bakery founded by Héloïse Haupt. Not only did she deliver to most gorgeous cake and sugar cookies but they where flat-out damn delicious. Check out the pics below:

Marli Smith

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Hi, I’m Kathryn

House of Hawkes is a boutique interior design studio based in Dubai. This website is where it all started and remains a creative space for my love of design and decor, and for sharing awesome everyday things. More about me & the team

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We’ve had our ups & downs, but overall, this country has been amazingly good to us. Both our babies were born here and no matter where we might land one day, this will always be ‘home’ in their hearts. 
PS: these pictures were taken by @nateleecocks sometime last year in the midst of a full-blown sandstorm. Nat, I’m still chuckling at the fact that we just carried on regardless! 
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