February 2017 | Tanvii.com - Indian Fashion, Lifestyle and Travel Blog

Do You Know About Agritopia?

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One of the the most amazing things about traveling is when you come to know about local communities and cultures who are living differently. Breaking the mould and walking the talk. One such experience was all the way in Gilbert, Arizona. One of the stops was at the Agritopia® community. It is a modern-village or sorts which is set within the urban fabric of the Phoenix metro area. 

The name itself sparks curiosity: Agritopia®. The theme behind this community is preserving urban agriculture. In their own words, "It is a principle-driven development that puts people and relationships ahead of money and trendiness." The community is comprised of 450 residential lots along with commercial, agricultural, and open space tracts. 

In 1960, Jim Johnston and his wife, Virginia bought the farm. Their vision for the farm was an ideal place to farm and to raise their three boys, Joe, Steve, and Paul. They built a home on the farm (which is now Joe’s Farm Grill. Picture below) and lived a very rural, independent life. In the late 1990’s, when Gilbert started to grow, the Johnston family made the decision to wider their vision for the farm. Their eldest son, Joe who had now become an engineer, spearheaded the design of Agritopia®. Working with a land planner, landscape architects, and others in the development community, a land plan that met the family’s goals was created. It preserved urban agriculture, was very walkable, neighborly, broke down barriers between people, and had many use categories. In 2000, after the approval from the Town of Gilbert, construction of Agritopia® began.

Today, Agritopia® is an all functional community with a farm, small businesses (such as winery, florist, salon, and more), residential are - all in all a complete micro-city.  Agritopia® is gridded with tree-lined streets and looks like a charming little community. And of course, all these years later, the Johnston family still lives in Agritopia®.

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There is no staff at the store. Everyone picks what they want and pay at the self check out. Honor system. 

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They also have their own in house local wine and beer and a cute outside patio area to enjoy the beverages in perfect Arizona weather. 

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A on site cute coffee shop where everything is of course organic with various vegan options. 

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Dress - Urban Outfitter // Another
Cap - Urban Outfitter // Similar
Scarf - From Denmark // Better
Shoes - Mussee & Cloud // Similar
Necklace - From Goa // Similar

In collaboration with Visit Phoenix

All opinions mentioned are my own.

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Balance Is Not Constant

Per usual I didn't write this post till the last moment and now I have no thoughts. I am watching the Oscars. Viola Davis won (yay!). Dev Patel didn't (sob). I have cancelled my morning workout. There is no way I can wake up at 5am if I sleep at midnight. I am hoping to make it to my workout in the evening. (... and such mundane details are what are running in my head.Come to think of it, that's how I have been feeling a lot lately. My mind is constantly occupied by mundane errands of daily life. I am not able to focus completely on my work. 

... either I am swamped with work and always playing catch up. Or when I decide to take a break then, just after a few hours I feel completely unproductive and restless. I am back to trying to find that balance which I had until last year. That's the thing about balance - it is not constant. The moment I feel I am on stable ground, the variables change on me and I have to find that 'new' balance. It is quite exhausting (and frustrating). I plan to take a moment and reanalysis my daily routine in the coming month. Do not know what needs to be changed but something's gotta give. I will keep you guys posted. 

Moving on to the outfit ... this is the last one from the London trip. Again, my friend Anita took these pictures. We were at a red light, the sun was setting, and I just needed to document my travel look. Hence, she obliged! :) 

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Sweater - Uniqlo // Same
Jacket - The North Face // Same
Jeans - GAP // Same
Scarf - Inherited // Option
Earrings - Tory Burch // Same
Boots - Steve Madden // Better


Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art (SMoCA)

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I am so excited to finally get this post up. Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art (SMoCA) was one of the coolest museums I have visited in recent times. At the SMoCA you would find local and international artists from around the world. It is in the heart of the Old Town District in downtown Scottsdale. It showcases permanent and traveling exhibitions and an outdoor sculpture garden that displays artworks from a variety of artists, including Arizona-based artist James Turrell.

In addition to outstanding exhibitions of modern and contemporary art, the SMoCA Building is an artwork in itself. Here are some of the reasons why it was one of my favorite sites to visit in Arizona:

  1. It is small museum with interesting exhibitions. It kept me, someone with short attention span,  interested and fascinated. 
  2. It was quite inexpensive - $10 for adults and $7 for students. Plus is is free entry every Thursday and after 5pm every Friday & Saturday. 
  3. It was full of colors. And you know I like colors. 
  4. Quite a few good spots for a fashion blogger to take pictures. 
  5. It had one of the coolest gift shops I have ever visited. 
SMoCA - Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

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P.S. A big shoutout to Richard, who is a young photographer based in Arizona, who came to meet me and was kind enough to take these pictures for me. Do check his work out here

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Photography via Richard Felix

 Jacket - From Istanbul
Dress - Nordstrom
Shoes - Mussee and Cloud


In collaboration with Visit Phoenix

All opinions mentioned are my own.

Three Ways Thursday - OTK Military Boots

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This happened to be my boot-of-the-season. I wore them for a whole month (January) everyday. Even took them on my trip to London. Thankfully they are comfortable enough walk around in. And now since spring has decided to come sooner I am assuming I will have to keep them away soon. So before I do that here's a recap of how I have styled them so far - once over skinny jeans, once with a wool skirt and once with a dress. Got a favorite? 


Since I Became A Travel Blogger

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Life has changed a lot over the past year. I have worn several 'blogging' hats - lifestyle, fashion, fitness, food, and now travel. The later has been the most exciting of them all as it is my passion. But with excitement, there has also been exhaustion. Traveling frequently comes with it's own sets of challenges. 

Here are a few things I have noticed since I changed gears into active travel blogging: 

1. 'Travel' does not necessarily means a vacation/holiday any more. No matter whether I am on-the-go for work or leisure it is ALWAYS a content creation opportunity. There is never one instance which I can completely switch off from work mode and just simply have a vacation. Again, not complaining, just stating the facts as this is exactly what I had signed up for.

2. Every travel blogger and social media follower seems like a real friend. Whenever I am about to visit a new place, first thing I do now is to go read all the other travel posts on that area and reach out to fellow bloggers who have already visited the place for tips and recommendations. Right now there is absolutely no distinction between real life friends and blogging friends. They are all the same.

3. You start to categorize people either as tourists or travelers. Not that I am saying there is something wrong with either of those categories but as travel bloggers you tend to seek authentic and off-the-beaten path experiences without really looking or acting like a tourist (going to the must-see spots, taking cheesy pictures, buying souvenirs from the gift shops). A tourist might buy a magnet from the gift shop, while a traveler will pick up local cheese and wine. You catch my drift?

4. Your number one priority is Wi-Fi while searching for accommodation. If I have two places to pick from, with all the other variables alike, I will definitely pick the one which has free wifi. When a hotel (or airbnb) does not have complimentary wifi, you automatically judge them for being prehistoric.

5. You are always in a limbo. When you are home, you wish you were some place else. When you are some place else for longer than a week, you wish you were home. Hence, you are never really at peace anywhere for very long. 

Below are the Travel Logs from various places I have visited over the last two years. Let me know which one you enjoyed the most. 

Life Choices

"Life choices" - I have heard this phrase a few times in the past month. Mostly in reference to my personal and professional choices. They have been different, unconventional and life-altering. Mostly by the virtue of circumstances and my short attention span.

Nonetheless, I am pretty darn happy with all my choices. While I am practicing the art of making "healthier" and smart choices (food and otherwise) but over all I like where the path has led me.

One reason why I am at peace with my choices is because I NEVER compare my life to anyone else's. My life is my own. I am here due to 'which family I was born in, which country I was born in, the personality I was born with, and then what I did with all of those variables. No two people have the same starting point. Not even twins. So the question of comparing and resenting doesn't arise. As long as I am actively choosing growth in ever moment and learning from every mistake, I count that as a successful life choice.

I don't like preaching so I won't. All I would say is there is nothing positive about envying anyone. Everyone has their own path. Do what makes you happy. Everyday. Rest will follow.

These fabulous pictures are taken by my friend - Anita - at the Daunt Books Store in Marylebone, London. Even if you don't like books, you must visit. 
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Blouse - COS // Similar 
Jeans - Joe's Jeans // Similar
Shoes - Steve Madden // Similar
Scarf - Uniqlo// Similar
Necklace - Mango // Same
Jacket - Similar
Bag - Chanel // Similar



Taliesin West In Scotsdale

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Upon my recent trip with Visit Phoenix I had a chance to check out Taliesin West. Before this I had no idea about the genius of Frank Lloyd Wright. The 90 minute tour of the property was quite informational. There were some interesting facts that stayed with my from this tour. Scroll down to read them. 
"In the winter of 1938, 70-year-old Frank Lloyd Wright purchased 160 acres at the foot of the McDowell Mountains in present-day Scottsdale to transform into his winter home and studio. Inspired by the southwestern landscape, Wright sought a ‘nobly simple’ architecture in Taliesin West. Primitive but elegant, Taliesin West’s monumental masonry feels as much an ancient ruin unearthed from the Sonoran desert, as the twentieth-century icon of modern architecture that it has become.

Wright’s winter camp expanded over the years to include studios, and residential, dining, and performance spaces, all which served the active community of the Fellowship." via

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Below are few of facts about the Taliesin West & Frank Lloyd Wright I learnt on the tour: 

  1. There are (13) pieces from the Chinese Theater scenes scattered around the house marking transitions from one area to another.
  2. Throughout the Taliesin West you can see Wright's use of triangles and half triangles, hallmarks of the design of the building.
  3. When he first bought the property there was no water. With the aid of a dousing rod and a lot of drilling water was struck and it is that aquifer today that still provides all the water for the property.
  4. He used the term compression and release to refer to the ducking to get into the room and then the feeling you got once inside.
  5. Taliesin West is considered to be one of Wright’s best examples of integrating indoor and outdoor living spaces.
  6. His architecture school is very communal and requires that you live on campus in Scottsdale for part of the year and in Wisconsin for part of the year. Some students still sleep in tents or small shelters that have been approved and that they have designed.
  7. Wright spent the warmer months at his home in Wisconsin aptly named - Taliesin East.
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Tunic - Namrata Joshipura
Jeans - Joe's 
Shoes - Coach 
Bag - Lo's & Sons
Sunglasses - RayBan


In collaboration with Visit Phoenix
All opinions mentioned are my own.
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