Out & About with Susan Hornik

undefinedRachael O'Brien, Stassi Schroeder, Scheana Shay, Kristen Doute

There is always so many interesting places to hold an event in Hollywood! This time, GBK Productions chose Mandt Bros.Studio on Santa Monica Blvd. for their American Music Awards luxury gifting lounge. "I love Hollywood because it's the center of everything that is happening," said Gavin Keilly, GBK president. "We like to choose a location that is center and where celebrities will be near so it's convenient for them to attend.  The studio we chose for our pre-MTV suit was a unique space with separate rooms. I liked how it wasn't a typical hotel setting. It's nice to mix it up from time to time."

Journalists and celebrities loved meeting The Artisan Group, a community of high-end small batch product makers of a wide assortment of exquisite items-everything from jewelry, bath and spa products to home décor, fine art photography, designer stationery, hair/pet accessories and children's apparel. In their gift bag, the Artisan Group had great handcrafted items to offer, from Starletta Designs (a beautiful white Druzy necklace!), Alyce N Maille, The Lost Arts, Helen's Adornments and Sassy Belle Wares.

"We believe there's no better gift than a handcrafted item that says...'You are important to me,' said TAG president Valerie Guerrero. "Our philosophy is simple-gift handcrafted for that special event because you care... about quality, community and small business; about sustainability, entrepreneurialism, and... simply because there's no greater expression of soul."

Other vendors included Express Smile Atlanta, which gifted their fast acting, home LED teeth whitening kits and The Science of Eating, a weight loss, health and wellness lifestyle site (check out their Facebook fan page for great health-related articles!) and the hair straightening brush Haute Brush.

Celebrity Connected also had a suite for the American Music Awards, at the W Hotel.  "Our gifting suites are a great opportunity for charities to mingle with today's hot stars," said Diana Colmenar, director of marketing. "Securing celebrity endorsements can help charity groups gain valuable media exposure, helping to boost recognition and bringing in more donations from others." 

My dog Spaz hanging out with Clone-A-Willy, at the Celebrity Connected gifting suite-

At the Natural Products Expo there were numerous tasty products you can buy at your local Hollywood specialty food store. I got to try many items including Om, Organic Mushroom Nutrition, which utilizes 10 species of mushrooms in single species powders and powder blends to give people the powerful benefits of mushrooms, Matt's Munchies, a three-ingredient fruit snack, and , AMIRA, a producer and exporter of Indian specialty basmati rice.

If you are a vegan, there were an array of meat-free and soy-free options out there, like Quorn, which has delicious items you can buy like Vegan Breaded Chik'n Cutlets, Vegan Chik'n Cutlets, Spicy Chik'n Patties and Vegan Chik'n Tenders. For your kids, Bio-K+ launched strawberry and vanilla Bio-Kidz®, a fermented dairy, which supports their intestinal flora health and natural defenses. 

Also, I really liked Stonebridge Orchards' Tart Cherry Juice Concentrate. The juice is a natural source of anthocyanins and antioxidants that may reduce muscle soreness and inflammation. Plus, the natural source of melatonin can also promote a better night's sleep. And the next time I workout, am definitely taking some OxiGen Water with me, which is perfect for post-exercise recovery, as it almost immediately clears lactic acid from the blood and boosts the body's oxygen levels. OXiGEN is also great for improving endurance, increasing stamina, providing mental clarity, reducing hangover symptoms and helping with jet lag recovery.

I also checked out Lily's Sweets' growing line of chocolate, including their dark chocolate baking products that are vegan and gluten-free. Lily's is perfect for those looking for a healthier chocolate option with all of the taste and none of the guilt. One fan of particular note is Celebrity Chef Rocco DiSpirito, who included Lily's in his recently released cookbook, The Negative Calorie Diet.

In honor of Earth Day, I'd also like to highlight Stasher, the world the world's first and only self-sealing, air-tight, non-plastic bag that can safely go from the freezer to the microwave to the dishwasher. It will forever change the storage bag market!

For Foodies:


It is Earth Day and Estelle Restaurant & Riviera 31 are celebrating--the bar will be offering a Special Green Cocktail made with organic juices--how delicious does an arugula cocktail sound?!


The restaurant will be offering a special " green menu" using only local products, highlighting the saving in Carbon consumption by utilizing recycled paper and candlelight. Guests will receive little give aways to " plant your own tree package" for the first 30 reservations.


The majority of the dish ingredients are local: they are sourced within a 350 mile radius of Los Angeles. In addition, their Executive Chef Victor will be visiting the Farmers market Wednesday morning to purchase produce to begin prepping. 


Also, on Wednesday, April 27, The Spare Room and SoCal jazz duo  Mattson 2 will toast to the final edition of  Jazzilla, monthly music series with a finale celebration of  California Vibes, featuring special guest, internationally-renowned composer, producer and Dublab Founding DJ, Carlos Niño on percussion.

From 9-11pm, Niño joins the duo for a performance of Cali-inspired tunes, along with a vinyl DJ set by guitarist, Jordan Blackmon of Toro Y Moi.

Posted By Susan Hornik on April 20, 2016 12:46 pm | Permalink