TOM SERPENTO’S LIFE ON AND OFF THE FOOTBALL FIELD
BARRINGTON STYLE & SUBSTANCE
ONWARD TO SPRING AT HOME WITH SHANNA NIKOLIC
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RED ED TO TOYOUR YOUR
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©2021 Closet Factory. All rights reserved.
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CONNIE ANTONIOU connieantoniou.com
“ She’s like a rainbow...” - THE ROLLING STONES
he month of March is often a reminder that something fresh is on the horizon. St. Patrick’s Day is also a reminder of opportunities for good luck and fortune. After the rain comes a rainbow, and after a trying year, hopefully, “normal” isn’t as far away as it feels.
done professional staging, photography, video, and drone videos on your property? Does your listing agent go to your house prior to showing appointments to prep the house with music, lights, candles, etc.? Studies have shown that people tend to work with someone they Know, Like, and Trust. I’d like to take it a step further and tell you that your broker should be your best walking, talking marketing tool. Every broker has their own style; do you feel your broker is representing you and your property the way you’d like to be represented?
s many of you know, Spring is typically a great time to sell your home, and I don’t think this year will be any different. In the Barrington Area, from January 2019 to January 2020, closed sales were up 7.1%. From January 2020 to just last month in January 2021, closed sales were up 43%. On the flipside, new listings in the Barrington area are down 11.9% from January 2020. This is showing us that inventory is low, and properly marketed homes are selling more quickly than in previous years. Making that fresh start in a new home is a much greater possibility.
ost of us who have bought and sold homes before know that one thing is certain; it is definitely not all sunshine and rainbows. If your home is currently listed and hasn’t sold, it may be time to evaluate why. I learned many years ago that if a property doesn’t sell in a reasonable amount of time (dependent on time of year, current market conditions, price point, etc.) then it is either one of three things or a combination of the three: House - Price Broker.
he days are getting longer, the sun is shining brighter, and believe it or not, the suburbs are once again the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. After a year of uncertainty, things are looking up! Warm Regards, Connie
ouse: Compared to the competition in your price range, how does your home compare? Have you decluttered? Have you replaced broken window seals and touched up chipped paint, or even re-painted entire rooms if necessary? Price: Are you truly motivated to sell your property for “Current” Market Value? Every seller has different motivations, needs, and wants. What is driving yours? Are your desires reasonable? Broker: Has your broker
If you would like to discuss your unique real estate needs confidentially, you may call or text me at +1 847.508.7775 or email email@example.com.
3213 Robert Parker Coffin Road | Long Grove | $975,000 4-acre lot in the renowned Adlai E. Stevenson school district. Call Connie for more information.
303 E Main Street, Suite 102 | Barrington, IL 60010 Jameson Sotheby's International Realty has offices in Barrington | Chicago - Lincoln Park | Evanston | Gold Coast | Hinsdale | Winnetka Source: All data from MRED. Data deemed reliable but not guaranteed. InfoSparks © ShowingTime. © 2021 Jameson Sotheby’s International Realty. All rights reserved. Sotheby’s International Realty® and the Sotheby’s International Realty Logo are service marks licensed to Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates LLC and used with permission. Jameson Sotheby’s International Realty fully supports the principles of the Fair Housing Act and the Equal Opportunity Act. Each office is independently owned and operated. Any services or products provided by independently owned and operated franchisees are not provided by, affiliated with or related to Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates LLC nor any of its affiliated companies.
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Receiving the COVID-19 vaccine is our commitment to providing the safest environment for our patients.
Michael A. Lovda, D.D.S. Michael A. Lovda Jr., M.S., D.D.S.
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Leading you home!
We work with people, not price ranges. We are relational Realtors with a combined 35 years of experience. From starter homes to exquisite multi-million dollar estates, we treat each client and their goals individually. Our clients call us trustworthy, influential, driven and tenacious. Shouldn’t you call us too?
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Over $360,000,000 in Career Sales Licensed in Illinois and Colorado Heidi Seagren, CRS Vice President, Sales 847.306.0600 firstname.lastname@example.org seagrenfinehomes.com © MMXXI Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates LLC. All Rights Reserved. Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates LLC fully supports the principles of the Fair Housing Act and the Equal Opportunity Act. Each Office is Independently Owned and Operated. Sotheby’s International Realty and the Sotheby’s International Realty logo are registered (or unregistered) service marks licensed to Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates LLC. As tabulated internally 1.1.20 - 12.31.20, utilizing a standardized accounting system. The stated represents all transactions at all Jameson Real Estate LLC offices, and includes residential sales and leasing transactions.
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2021 BUCKET LIST
celebrate every day
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FEATURES MARCH 2021
Chloé Mendel of Maison Atia with her husband Billy Corgan of Smashing Pumpkins, serving up treats at their Highland Park teahouse Madame ZuZu’s.
Strong-Armed & Generous 32 Tom Serpento shares his love for the game. Fashion Forward Faux Fur 38 Designer Chloé Mendel puts a stylish & sustainable twist on a family tradition. Artful Spectrum 42 Kaleidoscope School of Fine Art’s new executive director, Annmarie Dymon, sits down with Country. JWC | COUNTRY 12
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DEPARTMENTS MARCH 2021
EDITOR’S NOTE 18 UP FRONT THE BUZZ COUNTRY VS. TOWN BEAUTY FASHION
21 22 24 26 28
FOOD & TRAVEL 47 RECIPE 48 FIRST CLASS 51 HOUSE & HOME LUXURY OFFERINGS HOME STYLE IN THE GARDEN
55 56 62 64
ONE LAST THING 66 ON THE COVER Shanna Nikolic wearing Sabina Musayev black silk jumpsuit, shopvalentina.com ON THIS PAGE Luisa Beccaria ruffled lilac tulle, Haute Couture Collection, modaoperandi.com
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Founder & Publisher Editor-in-Chief Contributing Editors Style Director Style Editor
J.W. CONATSER MEGAN WEISBERG WENDY FRANZEN, DUSTIN O’REGAN, KEMMIE RYAN, SHERRY THOMAS THERESA DEMARIA ALLISON DUNCAN
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How to reach COUNTRY Magazine ADVERTISING INQUIRIES: ADVERTISING@JWCMEDIA.COM / 847.926.0957 EDITORIAL INQUIRIES: MEGAN.WEISBERG@JWCMEDIA.COM / 847.370.5840
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COUNTRY Magazine is published 10 times annually by JWC Media.
JWC Media accepts freelance contributions; however, there is no guarantee that unsolicited manuscripts, photographs, or graphics will be returned. All rights to the contents of this magazine are owned in full by JWC Media. COUNTRY Magazine may not be reproduced in whole or in part, including but not limited to advertisements and articles, without written permission from the publisher. COUNTRY Magazine assumes no responsibility for statements made or opinions expressed by contributing writers, editors, or advertisers. However, comments or corrections or differing opinions are welcomed. The publisher reserves the right to edit and place all editorials and ads. © 2021 JWC Media
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EDITOR’S NOTE Chloé Mendel
arch is such a tricky month, expectations and hopes run so high as we near the end of winter. And yet here in Barrington, March is never a guarantee that its quite time to pack away our winter boots. Our fashion spread reflects this push of the outgoing winter season and pull of the incoming spring—a smattering of gorgeous new items for spring and also a few items to update that lingering cold weather look. While watching last month’s Superbowl, I began to wonder what happens to the players when they exit the glory of the football field. In answer, in this issue, we speak with Tom Serpento, President of the National Football League’s Retired Football Players Association—Chicago Chapter, about the work of retired football players and the intertwining of his life with the sport of football. Our photoshoot with Serpento at Acceleration Sports Performance was nothing short of spectacular, seeing the camaraderie off the field existing between generations of football players bonded for life through their mutual love of the game was a glimpse into another world. Still looking back to last month, congratulations are in order for the winners of this year’s Dancing with the Barrington Stars! Dr. Jim and Amy Kane and Dr. Raja and Pooja Chatterji tied for first; Angela and Dr. Reinhold Llerena in second place; Judy and Peter Gibbons in third; with Kate and Lee Duncan in fourth! DWTBS raised more than $200,000 to support programs dedicated to serving the aging community, including Meals with Wheels. Coming from a line of furriers to the Russian aristocracy through the luxury fashion house J. Mendel which was started in the 1870s, Chloé Mendel, daughter to
Gilles Mendel (designer and CEO of J. Mendel) puts her own spin on her heritage with the founding of Maison Atia, a luxe line of faux fur fashions. Her story is sure to inspire you and when you learn that her husband is Billy Corgan—of Smashing Pumpkins fame—it makes it feel as if you already know her. Or perhaps that’s because you’ve spotted her before at her gorgeous teahouse Madame ZuZu’s in Highland Park. Kaleidoscope School of Fine Art’s new executive director, Annmarie Dymon, details how they are working to continue to enrich the community and continuing to foster a love for art. In our travel section, we share a glimpse back at a trip to Costa Rica, which will surely inspire you for travel ahead. And chatting with Shanna Nikolic for this month’s Country vs. Town was sheer joy—her positivity and fabulous outlook on life is sure to put a smile on your face as it did mine. Here’s looking forward to sunny days ahead. Best, Megan Weisberg Editor-in-Chief email@example.com
MY WISH LIST Drinking afternoon tea in Hanselmann Potter’s Tea cup, hanselmannpottery. com
Dreaming of the Lijadu billfold, embossed leather & wood in lavendar, brothervellies.com
Kaleidoscope School of Art’s Executive Director, Annemarie Dymon
Trying Luzern Lab’s new biocellulose masque, luzernlabs.com
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Is Right Now the Right Time to Sell? If you are on the fence about selling your house, now is a great time to take
sky high demand, low supply, and fierce buyer competition here in the
advantage of today's
In Barrington, IL (60010)
Inventory of Houses for Sale
offers received on average
Please contact me for a private conversation to discuss how I can help you take advantage of what has finally become a seller’s market in Barrington for the first time since 2008!
Melanie Parsons Real Estate Broker
P: 847-772-7179 E: firstname.lastname@example.org
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R B N OB RO IISSO R R ON O M R R O M TEAM TEAM
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R R M M o o rr rr ii s s o o n n T T e e a a m m .. c c o o m m *Volume and Units sold per Midwest Real Estate Database, LLC, 1/1/2004–1/4/2021 estate agents affiliated with Coldwell Banker Realty are independent contractor sales associates, not *Volume and©2020 Units sold per Midwest Estate Database, LLC, 1/1/2004–1/4/2021 estate agents affiliated with Coldwell Banker Realty are contractor sales associates, employees. Coldwell Banker Real Realty. All Rights Reserved. Coldwell Banker Realty fully supports the principles of the Fair Housing Actindependent and the Equal Opportunity Act. Owned bynot a employees. ©2020 subsidiary Coldwell Banker All RightsBanker Reserved. Coldwell Banker Realty fully theservice principles of the Fair by Housing ActBanker and theReal Equal Opportunity of NRTRealty. LLC. Coldwell and the Coldwell Banker Logo aresupports registered marks owned Coldwell Estate LLC. Act. Owned by a subsidiary of NRT LLC. Coldwell Banker and the Coldwell Banker Logo are registered service marks owned by Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC.
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UP FRONT CULTURE, MURMURS & STYLE
Sarah Harris wearing Mejuri.com
Harris bold chain earrings, mejuri.com
Deputy Editor and Fashion Features Director at British Vogue, Sarah Harris, has teamed up with jewelry brand, Mejuri, on a recently released collaboration. Limited to two new earrings, the collaboration is inspired by Mejuri’s most iconic (and Harris’ most worn) piece: the Bold Chain Ring. The Harris x Mejuri earrings are touted as the “kind of effortless pieces that will level up your look to that of a fashion editor.” For more information, visit mejuri.com.
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U P F R O N T | T HE B UZZ
SAVE THE DATE BARRINGTON YOUTH & FAMILY SERVICES’ APRIL 17 VIRTUAL GALA
BARRINGTON JUNIOR WOMEN’S CLUB
Barrington Youth & Family Services (BYFS) has seen a significant increase in clients due to the COVID-19 pandemic. As is no surprise, the pandemic worsened existing mental health problems and led to more cases of anxiety and depression among children and adolescents because of the unique combination of the public health crisis, lack of school, missed milestones, social isolation, and economic recession. BYFS is increasing scholarships to families that were affected financially by the pandemic and does not expect the need to subside. For their spring event, BYFS will be holding a virtual silent auction April 14 to 17, ending with a live auction. For more information, visit barringtonbyfs. org/news-events.
is excited to officially announce a date for its annual spring social event, May 8. Centered around an adult summer camp theme, “Camp BJWC” will be an elevated camp experience for the day. Think of it as reliving your favorite camp memories with bubbly in hand. Tickets go on sale this month and additional details will be announced on Barrington Junior Women’s Club’s social media channels. For more information, visit bjwc.org.
Dinner & a Movie Earring Set, supersmalls.com
Maison Berger Lamps at Linly Designs, Clarendon Hills
MAISON BERGER LAMPS Happy Hour Bracelet Set, supersmalls.com
Designed in 1898 by a French pharmacist to purify the air in hospitals, Maison Berger lamps add elegance to your home while removing airborne bacteria. With an endless combination of both decorative lamps and home fragrances, you are sure to find a style perfect for any home. Maison Berger lamps are available at Linly Designs in Clarendon Hills or at linlydesigns.com.
NEWLY LAUNCHED BARRINGTON AREA VOLUNTEER CONNECTION
Fiesta Headband, supersmalls.com
SUPER SMALLS Super Smalls is inspired by the joy of the extravagant and the whimsical. Maria Dueñas Jacobs, an experienced leader in the fashion and accessories industry, founded Super Smalls to combine her love for refined, beautiful, and ornate objects with her passion for all things fun and kid-centric. Born out of the idea that no matter how many beads and kids jewelry her daughters were given, they always wanted to play with mom’s jewelry instead. Taking inspiration from glitzy, grown-up stuff—decadent fine jewelry and bold fashion—and translating it for a child’s eye. For more information, visit supersmalls.com.
The Barrington Area Volunteer Connection (BAVC) is a searchable online system that matches the needs and offerings of Barrington area nonprofits with the specific interests of volunteers. Now live, it also offers practical leadership and volunteer training through their community leaders, while facilitating connections between organizations and individuals within the Barrington community. For more information, visit thebavc.org.
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U P F R O N T | COUNTRY VS. TOWN Shanna Nikolic studied Broadcast Journalism and Public Relations at Syracuse University’s Newhouse School of Communications, graduating magna cum laude. Now, living in Inverness, Nikolic co-owns First Class Plumbing alongside her husband of 15 years, Ned. A member of the Barrington Junior Women’s Club, Nikolic co-chairs the Service to Seniors Committee, delivers Meals on Wheels, and serves on the Social Committee at the Inverness Golf Club. She continues to be involved at Marion Jordan Elementary School—where her children attend. Nikolic has much on her proverbial vision board, is excited for the future, and has no desire of slowing down any time soon! EDITED BY MEGAN WEISBERG PHOTOGRAPHY BY JAMES GUSTIN, FIG MEDIA STYLING BY THERESA DEMARIA HAIR AND MAKEUP BY LEANNA ERNEST FOR DISTINCT ARTISTS Mantra? Work Hard/Play Hard Best grooming tip? Exercise! Best anti-aging regimen. I’ve been addicted my whole life Guilty pleasure? Bridgerton. This show feels unique in part because it’s set in the Regency era, and yet, the music is set to ballads like Ariana Grande or Maroon 5 in an orchestral arrangement. It’s a perfect juxtaposition of old world and new world. I’m entranced Favorite foods? Spicey anything works for me Music you love? Spa music. I love how tranquil nature and water sounds. It puts me at ease and calms the senses Best advice ever given to you? “Always count your blessings.” Positive thinking is at my core Earliest memory? Jumping onstage at a young age. I have always loved public speaking/performing and hope to get back into it someday When you wake up, you? Give thanks to God for another day. 2020 was a hard year on so many people on so many levels. I pray that one day we can look back and realize we learned and changed in ways that allowed us to grow for the betterment of Lauren Moshi top
Kelli Kouri leapord jacket, Vince cashmere turtleneck and trouser, Neiman Marcus, Oakbrook
ourselves and society Before bed, you? Always wash my face and apply my fave products. Skin care is important selfcare What’s on your bookshelf? Books on spirituality and the metaphysical You can’t live without? My husband. Life throws curveballs, none of them would have been manageable without him. And, of course, my kids—they are epic people Love to escape to? Travel of any sort energizes me and gives me something to look forward to Advice you would give to your younger self? In early 2019, make a major stock investment in toilet paper, face masks, and hand sanitizer … Ha!!! I joke about serious matters, because I believe laughter is the best medicine
WHEN IN THE COUNTRY WHEN IN TOWN
Your style is? Edgy casual. Lauren Moshi has the best graphic T’s and sweatshirts. Paired with black yoga pants, a moto leather jacket, and Valentino sneakers. Boom, instant magic Can’t leave the house without? My 32 ounce Hydro flask filled with ice water Transportation? Mercedes SUV Driving music? Top 40 hits Place to eat? Region and Shakou. I love a restaurant that you can count on for quality and consistency Shop? Revolve online boutique Best thing about the country? Having my wonderful friends close by. After all, friends are the family you choose Worst thing about the country? Umm, where is the beach and warm weather? The major pitfall of our area The perfect day is? A clean house and hot meal (that I can’t take credit for—LOL) and my family wrapped in my arms
Your style is? Cocktail dress, high heels, and a designer bag. Glam all the way Can’t leave the house without? A babysitter Transportation? Car service Driving music? ElecMaple and Ash tronic dance music. The fast beats mirror the energy I have for life Place to eat? Maple and Ash. They always start your experience with a complimentary mini-cocktail and bites. I think it’s the cutest thing ever Shop? Yes please! I love spending an afternoon hitting up all the designer stores. Their inventory is so much more expansive than when in the country Best thing about town? All the amazing restaurants and high energy vibes Worst thing about town? That it can feel like such a far commute. Wish it were closer The perfect day is? Spa in the morning, followed by shopping, dinner, and some dancing. Then the night made complete with an overnight stay at a hotel with my husband xoxo
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Personal Training Studio
Spring is the Time for New Beginnings
Become Who You Were Born To Be 860 S Northwest Hwy | Barrington, IL 60010 | 847-387-3042 | equilibriumfit.com
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U P F R O N T | B EAUT Y
ODACITE bioactive rose gommage pineapple and hyaluronic acid peel, nordstrom.com
NECESSAIRE the body wash, nordstrom.com
TATA HARPERS Skincare clarifying mask, nordstrom.com
REFRESH. RENEW. REVITALIZE. Supercharge your beauty routine. PROVINCE APOTHECARY hydrating rescue balm, nordstrom.com
EDITED BY MEGAN WEISBERG
THISWORKS deep sleep bath soak, nordstrom.com
BYREDO Eau de Parfum, mrporter.com
ODACITE blue aura cleansing water, nordstrom.com
ILIA color block lipstick, nordstrom.com
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With low inventory and record sales, there’s never been a better time to buy, sell, or relocate. EXCEPTIONAL SERVICE IS THE ONLY KEY YOU’LL EVER NEED Maria Devins Real Estate Broker Top 10 Office Producer since 2012
Chairman’s Club 847.840.2520 email@example.com
Information provided is not guaranteed and subject to change and withdrawal without notice.
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U P F R O N T | FA S H I O N
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FASHION |UP FRONT
SPRING AWAKENING 5
A mix of warm and cool weather looks for March—the border between spring and winter. EDITED BY MEGAN WEISBERG
1 The Carlyle Crossbody in Saffron, wyldempyre.com Photographer and Creative Direction - Claiborne Swanson Frank 2 Horror Vacui Collia cotton blouse, matchesfashion.com/us, photo by Dirk Bader 3 Zimmerman, lovestruck tiered cotton and silk-blend georgette maxi skirt, net-aporter.com 4 Luisa Beccaria draped dress in print chiffon, modaoperandi.com 5 Hill House Home nesli nap dress, hillhousehome. com 6 Bike Shoe, nappa suede in grapefruit, brothervellies.com 7 Springbok Billfold, brothervellies.com 8 2020 Boot, brothervellies. com 9 This is Black Iris, the jackie top in mocha velvet, shopblackiris.com
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PU B L I SHER’ S P RO FI LE
REAL TIME COVID-19 RAPID TESTING IS HERE! WORDS BY JAMES T. GAVRILOS
ll of our lives have changed so much over the past 12 months. Dealing with COVID-19 has forced us to change how we live. One aspect of this change is the management of testing for virus positivity. Most of the current tests that we take require a two to three day wait time before we get the results. Well, not anymore. Our office has acquired the CUE Health Rapid COVID-19 testing system. It is a PCR test so it is accepted by airlines, places of employment, etc. It uses a small nasal swab for collection. The swab is only 1.5 inches long and does not need to be inserted all the way into your sinuses like so many of the current tests. The swab is placed into the Cue test reader and in 25 minutes, we have the results. The testing system has shown to have 99 percent accuracy. We are offering this test to everyone. The appointment only takes about 10 minutes for filling out the paperwork and collecting the sample. You do not have to wait for the results. We will text you with the results as soon as they are available. We can also provide you with written confirmation should you need it for verification for flying or employment.
The cost of the test is $250. We ask for payment up front and we will submit a claim to your health insurance or Medicare and they will reimburse you what they cover directly. For our current dental patients, we will submit the claim and wait for reimbursement directly. For more information on the Cue Health COVID-19 test, visit cuehealth.com. If you are in need of a rapid test, call our office at 847-381-4040 for an appointment. Dr. James T. Gavrilos is accredited with AACD. His office is located at 129 Park Avenue in Barrington. For more information, call 847-381-4040 or visit barringtondentist.com.
Don’t Delay Your Treatment We are open and treating patients following CDC guidelines. VSI cares about the health and well-being of our patients. Vein Specialists of Illinois, a locally owned, independent medical practice is a leader in non-surgical, personalized treatment of venous disorders. VSI serves your community with two convenient locations in Lake Zurich and Elgin. Trusted professionals Dr. Sorenson and Dr. Lutz are double Board Certified and Diplomates of the American Board of Venous and Lymphatic Medicine with a combined 30+ years experience. Utilizing the most current equipment and latest techniques to treat varicose and spider veins, VSI professionals will change the way you look and feel with minimally invasive procedures. Call today to hear how you can maximize your insurance benefits.
Varicose Veins • Spider Veins • Venous Ulcers Lymphedema • Cosmetic Facial & Hand Veins
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For your safety we have adopted additional policies and procedures to minimize potential risk of infection per the recommendation of the CDC and local health systems.
Thomas A. Lutz, MD RVT RPVI Stephen C. Sorenson, MD RVT RPVI
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2/21/21 8:40 PM
PUBL ISHER’ S PROFILE
COVID-19 & THE FIRST YEAR
WORDS BY CHIRAG PATEL, MD PHOTOGRAPHY BY FRANK ISHMAN
CO UNTRY MAG.NET
his past year has been unprecedented due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Providing health care is always challenging, and this past year brought another layer of complexity. As many of us continue to either have received the vaccine or have plans to get it in the near future, it’s amazing that we are at the one-year anniversary of this pandemic. In my experience with seniors during this past year, I realized that COVID-19 not only affected the patient but also the whole family indirectly. Recent articles are now surfacing with patients that continue to recover slowly after being infected months before. Patients that were able to walk are now in wheelchairs, worsened cognition of seniors, chronic fatigue causing others to stop working are all examples of COVID-19 survivors. Families in turn have had to make modifications to their lives and circumstances to help with their recovering loved ones. The vaccine started with much fanfare, but we quickly realized the challenges of administering this to the millions in an organized and efficient way. Some have had mild illness-like effects, especially after the second dose. It is unclear whether this will be a yearly process like the flu-shot or whether the immunity will last longer. Variants of the coronavirus are now occurring adding another layer of consideration for future management worldwide.
By now we all know the precautions outlined by health care providers. I do encourage our seniors to continue to be diligent about continuing these measures, especially those that may have many medical problems or are frail. This includes wearing a mask, using hand sanitizer, and avoiding large crowds. This very well may be the new normal for seniors. However, I do encourage activities and social interaction with family and familiar faces in controlled environments. The medical establishment is making great strides in research and treatment options and advances. For some that is a little too late, as many have perished from this virus. So, what can we do as a society to maximize the health care we currently have? First, understand that we all are learning about coronavirus and no one doctor has all the answers. Second, do not ignore signs and symptoms your body may be experiencing, and seek out medical care as soon as possible. Lastly, stay positive. Your mental mindset affects not only your body but all those around you. As I continue my quest to help all seniors and reflect on this first year living with COVID-19, I feel confident in our health care system to lead us back to prosperity. Hansa Medical Groupe has offices at 5250 Old Orchard Road, Suite 300, in Skokie, and in Chicago, 847-920-0902, hansamedicalgroupe.com.
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Serpento. In the background, Jason Willis (former Seattle Seahawks), J.R. Niklos (former Kansas City Chiefs), and Brent Novoselsky (former Minnesota Vikings)
STRONG-ARMED & GENEROUS JWC | COUNTRY 32
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Quarterback-for-life and construction company executive Tom Serpento continues to engineer highly successful drives in his roles with the NFL Players Association, Former Players (Chicago Chapter), and the organization’s charitable arm. WORDS BY BILL MCLEAN PHOTOGRAPHY BY JAMES GUSTIN, FIG MEDIA PHOTOGRAPHY ASSISTANT, BRIAN CAREY PHOTOGRAPHY LIGHTING BY BOB DAVIS AND LIGHTS PROVIDED BY FJWESTCOTT &TETHERTOOLS WARDROBE PROVIDED BY NEIMAN MARCUS OAKBROOK AND COLE HAAN STYLING AND GROOMING BY THERESA DEMARIA SET LOCATION ACCELERATION SPORTS PERFORMANCE, NAPERVILLE
ormer Iowa prep quarterback Tom Serpento has never thrown a pass in a National Football League game. But he’s been the prolific signal-caller—the executive director, actually—for both the NFL Players Association, Former Players (Chicago Chapter), and the group’s charitable arm, the Retired Professional Football Players of Chicago (RPFPC), since 2014. The main function of the NFL Players Association, Former Players—with Chicago one of 33 chapters nationwide—is to serve as a support system for former players and help them transition to life after football. Meanwhile RPFPC, founded in 2003, is comprised of former professional football players who work voluntarily to support Chicagoland causes and charities. It primarily aims to raise funds for its Academic Scholarship Program (annual awards of $12,000 for one high school male and one high school female) and Football Equipment Grant Program for local youth in underserved communities. “Nothing is more important than the life of a child, and one of the most rewarding sights for me is seeing young football players warm up a place with their smiles and happiness,” says the 58-year-old Serpento from his Hoffman Estates residence. “I’m one person on a board of 12,” adds the acting president and CEO of T-Squared Builders, LLC, a full-service construction and general contracting company that has served Barrington and surrounding communities for 20 years. “My job is to drive the charitable outreach of our wonderful organization from the idea stage to the action stage. I love what I do. My life is full. The game of football and the many life lessons embodied within it are woven into the very fabric of my existence. Its been that way for as long as I can remember dating back to my youth in Des Moines. And I found that part of life again, at another level, through my affiliation with the Chicago Chapter of the NFL Players Association, Former Players.” Serpento’s first hero was an Iowa youth football legend who happened to double as his dad. For nearly forty years, Bernie Serpento’s dedication and leadership invigorated and inspired tens of thousands of young gridders in the Des Moines-based Little All-American Football League from 1961 to 1997 where he served as league director. The twenty-three-year veteran lieutenant colonel in the U.S. Air Force and Little All-American Football League Hall of Famer died in 2004.
Serpento on the field with J.R. Niklos (former Kansas City Chiefs), Brent Novoselsky (former Minnesota Vikings), and Jason Willis (former Seattle Seahawks)
“I was fortunate to have inherited all of my father’s best traits,” the humble and grateful Serpento says. “He was a self-made man, with sound organizational and management skills. Tom Serpento with a child winner at the His work ethic, it was ‘Let’s Move Elgin 5K Walk - Run’ event for homeless students in U-46 school district phenomenal.” So how in the world did Serpento, this proud former Iowa State University Cyclone, find himself in huddles with ex-NFL players as a high-ranking executive of an NFL Players Association Chicago Chapter? Easy. He’s been fast friends with former Chicago Bears Brent Novoselsky, Bruce Herron, and Emery Moorehead, among dozens of other retirees from around the NFL, for decades. Novoselsky—a Niles North High School and University of Pennsylvania graduate—played tight end for the Minnesota Vikings from 1989-1994 after his lone season with Chicago in 1988. Novoselsky, 54, calls Buffalo Grove home today. There might not be a tighter friendship in the northwest suburbs than the Serpento-Novoselsky bond. They first met at a Lake Zurich youth football camp in 1996. The camp needed a quarterback coach. Camp co-organizer Mike Scully, a former University of Illinois and Washington Football Team JWC | COUNTRY 33
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Serpento at Acceleration Sports Performance
Tom Serpento greeting youth football players at Morgan Park Youth Grant Unveiling’ event 2017
Walter & Connie Payton Foundation 5K Run 2019. George McCaskey (Chairman, Chicago Bears), Kurt Becker (‘85 SB Chicago Bears), Corey Mays (Kansas City Chiefs), J.R. Niklos (Kansas City Chiefs), Wendell Davis (Chicago Bears), Bruce Herron (Chicago Bears), Mickey Pruitt (Chicago Bears), Serpento, Bill Schick (Kansas City Chiefs), Mike Tosaw (Buffalo Bills)
center, knew that Serpento used to throw zippy spirals for Dowling Catholic High School in Des Moines. Serpento showed up at the Lake County camp, ready to teach and chuck pigskins hard. Novoselsky’s fingers survived his warm-up session with Serpento on day one of the camp. Barely. “Tom has no touch. He can throw a ball through a building,” cracks Novoselsky, a former Chicago Chapter president of the NFL Players Association, Former Players. “He’s intense. Tom and our organization’s charitable arm—it’s the perfect match. It’s not an easy job, being our executive director, because it often requires corralling a lot of kittens. But Tom is always up for it. Tom is not bashful, which is awesome, and he cares about people, cares about doing what he can to make young lives better.” Owen Prunskis, a 2011 Barrington High School graduate, earned one of RPFPC’s $12,000 academic scholarships. He needed only four years to complete an undergraduate program and the MBA program at … Harvard University. The RPFPC partners with companies to provide new and safer equipment as part of its Youth Football Grant Program. Wilson Sporting Goods, for example, donated a combined 60 footballs and 150 mouth guards and helmet chin straps to the three most recent RPFPC grant recipients. “Youth football has improved and, in some cases, saved lives,” Novoselsky says. “Tom knows that better than anyone, given what he witnessed as his father helped all those football kids develop in Iowa. A lot of these kids in the Chicago area are growing up in rough neighborhoods, without a father figure in their lives. They become a part of a
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“He’s such an energetic man, with a contagious personality and a big heart. We’re grateful we have someone in our community with as much enthusiasm and positivity as Tom has.”
Walter & Connie Payton Foundation 5K Run 2019. Bruce Herron (Chicago Bears), ), George McCaskey (Chairman, Chicago Bears), Serpento
team and suddenly they have good friends, brothers for life. Being associated with a team opens doors for many of them.” Several years ago Serpento and his RPFPC crew made a difference off the gridiron, collaborating with the Barrington Junior Women’s Club to pitch in for the fundraising efforts of the Freddie Herriman Pederson Splashpad at the Barrington Park District. It’s an Americans with Disability Act (ADA)-accessible water spray ground for all children. “Tom reached out to us in the year we were celebrating our club’s 80th anniversary,” says Erin Shechtman, a Barrington Junior Woman’s Club past president. “I remember him saying, ‘We need to do something for the community.’ He’s such an energetic man, with a contagious personality and a big heart. We’re grateful we have someone in our community with as much enthusiasm and positivity as Tom has.” Doing something run-of-the-mill, in any arena, is foreign to Serpento. The man is a lector at St. Anne Catholic Community in Barrington. But he doesn’t simply read scripture to parishioners on any given Sunday; he spends hours memorizing every word in each passage during the workweek. Then he stands before the congregation, his eyes scanning scores of others, and delivers the lesson using his booming, movie-trailer voice. “There’s not a day I get out of bed without having a purpose,” Serpento says. For more information about the Retired Professional Football Players of Chicago, visit rpfpc.com.
NFLPA Charity Golf Outing’ at Mistwood Golf Course 2019. Serpento, Jim McMahon (‘85 SB Chicago Bears), Steve ‘Mongo’ McMichael (‘85)
Gigi’s Playhouse Gala 2019. Back row - Jerry Fontenot (Chicago Bears), Otis Hudson (Cincinatti Bengals), Al Harris (Chicago Bears), Corey Mays (Kansas City Chiefs), Desmond Clark (Chicago Bears), Kurt Becker (‘85 SB Chicago Bears), Bruce Herron (Chicago Bears) Front row - Serpento, Kinnon Tatum (Carolina Panthers)
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NEW BARRINGTON LOCATION It is our pleasure to announce that Buckley Fine Law has moved to 201 S. Grove Avenue in downtown Barrington. With ample parking and easy access to commuter trains, our new main office is convenient for clients coming from near and far. This larger space also accommodates our growing team of new attorneys and staff members – all of which are ready to continue providing the personalized client service for which Buckley Fine is known. We are excited to serve our clients and communities from this great location! Please follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn and Instagram for Buckley Fine news and insights. We look forward to showing you our new space! E S TAT E P L A N N I N G | E S TAT E & T R U S T A D M I N I S T R AT I O N | B U S I N E S S L AW A S S E T P RO T E C T I O N | EM P L OY M EN T L AW | LI T I G AT I O N | R E A L E S TAT E
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2/21/21 8:27 PM
Clementine and Chloe Mendel wearing MA by Maison Atia coats. Chloe in Sally LaPointe blouse, cream flower tweed Giambatista Valli skirt, neopolitan.com
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Fashion FORWARD Faux Fur MA By Maison Atia Genevieve coats, maisonatia.com
Designer CHLOÉ MENDEL puts a stylish & sustainable twist on a family tradition. WORDS BY LAURA LAYFER TREITMAN / PHOTOGRAPHY BY DAVID LESLIE ANTHONY STYLING BY THERESA DEMARIA / HAIR & MAKEUP BY SARA SALTANOVITZ STYLING ASSISTANCE BY KIKI CAREY / LOCATION MADAME ZUZU’S TEAHOUSE JWC | COUNTRY 39
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MA By Maison Atia Genevieve coats, maisonatia.com
Chloé Mendel wearing Faux fur vest by MA Maison Atia, maisonatia.com and cashmere turtleneck sweater by Sally LaPoint, black tulle skirt with blue florets, neapolitan, Winnetka
Maison Atia Colette Pink Label coat, maisonatia.com
hloé Mendel recalls after-school walks home along the Upper East Side of Manhattan, where she grew up, and fond memories of her regular visits to her father’s J. Mendel workroom, located just next door to their residence. As a young girl, Mendel was captivated by the trade and traditions of the multi-generations of furriers in her family. Fast-forward, and today she is in the process of building her own legacy that not only sustains those techniques passed down but makes sustainability the very focus of the brand. Maison Atia produces faux fur clothing and accessories from couture and ready-towear, to a newer line called MA by Maison Atia and fabricated from plants and recycled plastic with a zero-waste policy. While Mendel’s New York City roots hold strong (she has a design studio in East Harlem), her current residential base is on the North Shore of Chicago with clients across Barrington. Maison Atia is comprised of a small staff led by Mendel and her friend and business
MA by Maison Atia Violette coat in Noir, maisonatia.com
co-founder Gustave Maisonrouge. “He is the one who manages strategy, organization, and deadlines for the company,” says Mendel, “because I don’t even pay my own bills on time!” Within one year the dynamic duo had a capsule collection that debuted in 2017, and soon an impressive national retail market followed. As clients in Barrington know, her designs are available at high-end department store venues such as Neiman Marcus. “Fur is such a luxurious medium,” remarks Mendel, “but you need big investors, as a sable coat, for example, can cost up to half a million dollars. We wanted a product applying the same craftsmanship and care with more accessibility and affordability.” Full-length and mid-waist coats, sweaters, vests, handbags, hair accessories, shoes, and a host of other garments may be accented on collars, cuffs, and pocket squares, or allover detailed in a fur-like material. To the touch it is just as soft and luxurious as the real thing, yet easy to spot-clean with soap and water and without the same cost or controversy. “We noticed a gap in marketplace,” comments Mendel, “women of all ages needed an alternative and also another vernacular for fur.” That ingenuity has enabled the company to branch out in a multitude of directions. In 2019, they introduced the
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MA by Maison Atia Genevieve coat in Canary, maisonatia.com
MA by Maison Atia Lucille coat, maisonatia.com
Maison Atia Helena Pink Label coat, maisonatia.com
label MA by Maison Atia, with a more reasonable price point for outerwear made from Koba, composed of corn by-product and repurposed materials. More recently, the “Zoom dress” premiered as an easy-go-to A-line shortsleeve ruffled sheath available in two color variations and perfect for workplace meeting quarantine chic. Her father, Gilles Mendel, apprenticed in the Paris atelier of his father (the family furrier lineage dates back to late 19th Century St. Petersburg, Russia), and after developed the full-service J. Mendel salons, offering furs, bridal, and evening gowns. So too, Mendel began as an intern with her father. “Every summer during middle school I was learning sewing, stitching, pattern-making, and my brother even ran deliveries,” reminisc-
es Mendel. It’s that hands-on approach that finds her both at ease with needle and thread embroidering a one-of-a-kind piece, and in her deep appreciation for quality and beauty. She remembers dressing for dinners served on fine porcelain when visiting her paternal grandparents in France, contrasted to the influences of her fashionable mother, a fabulous cook seeking a more holistic approach, “If I had a headache my mom would say, let’s meditate.” The combination consistently informs Mendel’s own initiatives. MA by Maison Atia is proudly 100 percent sustainable, and while Mendel is always sourcing vendors internationally within the framework of this environmentally conscious mission, it is never at the expense of style and elegance.
On a local level, Mendel’s personal passion for pet advocacy and her relationship with PAWS Chicago, has become a critical part of her work. She describes the organization as a “magical place,” and one that benefits from a percentage of company sales through the #BuyACoatSaveAPuppy campaign. Her involvement began shortly after moving to the Midwest to attend the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and it is a commitment she shares with partner Billy Corgan, the musician and Smashing Pumpkins lead band member, and their two young children. As a couple they run Madame ZuZu’s Teahouse in Highland Park, a cafe with a plant-based menu, comedy, and concert evening events, and a space to showcase and sell a selection of MA by Maison Atia. Once a self-described “city kid,” Mendel is surprised at how easily she has taken to suburban life. “I have a vegetable and a prairie grass garden in my backyard!” When not traveling the globe to launch a Fashion Week seasonal show or find a cutting-edge textile mill, you might catch her baking vegan pastries at 5 in the morning or poring over sketches that she frequently presents to her father for his valued input. No matter the scenery, Mendel’s vision for faux fur and Maison Atia remains clear as it is one that is quite simply in her nature to nurture. For more information about Maison Atia, visit maisonatia.com. JWC | COUNTRY 41
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Annemarie Dymon at Kaleidoscope School of Art
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A R T F U L SPECTRU M Kaleidoscope School of Fine Art’s new executive director finds new ways to enrich community.
Paint brushes awaiting art students
WORDS AND PHOTOGRAPHY BY MONICA KASS ROGERS
hen Annmarie Dymon settled in Barrington ten years ago with her family, she was delighted to discover the Kaleidoscope School of Fine Art—especially since her daughter Courtney was a blossoming young artist. “Kaleidoscope was Courtney’s happy place,” says Dymon. “She just loved it. Classes in clay, mosiacs, painting and drawing … there was always something new for her to try.” For Dymon, the move happily meant lots more time with her young children, but less for her private practice in speech language therapy. “I commuted down to Chicago for a few years, but that wasn’t feasible,” she says. So, as the kids settled into their schooling, Dymon put her free-time energies into the PTOs at their schools, and became active in the Barrington Junior Women’s Club, participating on many levels, and serving as president one year. She also founded a mother-daughter volunteer group called the Barrington Service League. “I have always been interested in community service, here, and in what way I could, beyond that,” says Dymon, who degreed at Northwestern University in communication science and disorders with a Master’s in Speech Language Pathology. That, plus a second Master’s in Educational Leadership and Administration from George Washington University in D.C. “It’s funny,” says Dymon, “when I got that second Master’s I wasn’t quite sure how it would come into play, but I knew someday it would.” And now, it has. In January 2020, Dymon stepped up to become executive
“Kaleidoscope has been a staple of this community for decades ... Generations of families have gone here.”
director at Kaleidoscope. “It was really the perfect marriage of three things: My love for art, my nonprofit experience, and my education in school leadership and administration,” she says. Despite the fact that the pandemic descended just months after she came on board, Dymon’s enthusiasm for growing the school held strong. Dymon dove in deeply, studying the organization and its operations, looking at where the school has been, and where it might go. She also worked with her team to launch a new website, roll out new enrollment software, refresh branding and marketing, and revamp the school’s social media strategy. All of this during the few months early 2020 when the school was required to close due to the pandemic.
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Some of the many art supplies found at Kaleidoscope School of Art
“Kaleidoscope has been a staple of this community for decades,” she says. “Generations of families have gone here. It’s such a happy and fun place for adults and kids to spend their time. And I believe there are so many opportunities for greater connections we can build in the community, working with other non-profits on projects and events, partnering with local businesses, and increasing our outreach to underserved groups for whom art can bring so much light.” Putting all of this into action, Dymon and her board are looking for new ways to coordinate with local wellness organizations to start art therapy programs: “We want to bring art to kids who might otherwise not have access to it because of the cost, and, to people with special needs—being inclusive of kids and adults in the special needs population is especially important to me.” Kaleidoscope already has a robust program to bring art to seniors, a mission they’ve kept alive through the pandemic. One of the teachers goes into The Garlands where they broadcast her classes through the center via closed circuit TV. Another Zooms classes to residents. In addition, the school has prepared and distributed seasonal art packets for seniors. One new effort here? Coordinating with local youth groups to paint watercolor cards for seniors, including a postage paid return envelope to encourage a dialogue with the recipients. Through it all, a wide range of art classes for all ages and
“I think the guiding thing that has taken us through the ups and downs of this year is that art is for everyone.”
ability levels have continued at Kaleidoscope. “We are open six days a week—daytime and night,” says Dymon, who adds that classes are kept small and socially distanced for safety. Classes range from preschool offerings such as “Kinder Klay” and “Mini-Masters,” to youth classes in many mediums, and adult painting, drawing, watercolor and mixed media classes. In addition, Kaleidoscope offers specialty art classes, such as adult watercolor Zoom classes and mixed media Zoom classes for kids. Visiting artists also come to Kaleidoscope to teach workshops. “I think the guiding thing that has taken us through the ups and downs of this year is that art is for everyone,” sums Dymon. “No matter what you are going through, you can take a moment to create, view, and enjoy art. Our vision for Kaleidoscope is all about that: Finding new ways to take art with us out into the community to help others.” For more information on the school and its classes, visit kaleidoscopeart.org.
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AN ARCHITECTURAL MASTERPIECE
C E L E B R AT E D & REIMAGI NED
All floor plans shown are for illustrative purposes only. Floor plans may not depict final design of units as constructed and may not be drawn to scale. All sketches, renderings, architectural models, materials, plans, specifications, terms, prices, conditions and statements, including estimated timeframes and dates, contained herein are proposed only and are not intended to constitute representations. Developer reserves the right to make modifications in its sole discretion and without prior notice. All photographs and renderings are merely intended as illustrations of the activities and concepts depicted therein as interpreted by the artists. Developer makes no representations regarding any view and/or exposure to light at any time including any existing or future construction by either owner or a third party. Square footage and ceiling heights are approximate and may be based on various measurement methodologies, subject to construction variances and tolerances, as well as redesign, and vary from unit to unit (and may vary from floor to floor). This brochure shall not constitute a valid offer in any jurisdiction where prior registration is required and not yet fulfilled. Where used, developer shall mean Tribune Tower West DL# 2556130 (Chicago) Owner, LLC and its affiliated entities and their respective managers, members, directors, shareholders, partners, agents, affiliates and employees.
2/21/21 8:27 PM
North Shore-Barrington Association of REALTORS® proudly recognizes our 2020 Industry Advocates. These dedicated real estate professionals serve as home ownership and private property champions — ensuring our North Shore and Barrington Communities remain 2020 Industry Advocates
vibrant places to live & work. We’re thankful for their passionate advocacy & unswerving commitment to their communities.
Brad W. Andersen
Don Gelfund RE/MAX Villager
Adrianne Han Mega USA Properties
Keith A. Hancock RE/MAX Villager
Carrie Healy Compass
Steve Hudson Compass
Jeff Lasky NSBAR
Wayne Paprocki Compass
Jesal Patel Patel Realty Services
Kati Spaniak eXp Realty
Jim Votanek Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices
Griffith, Grant & Lackie
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices
Baird & Warner
Jameson Sotheby’s International
Baird & Warner
+ REALTORS® understand how home & property ownership changes lives, for the better. This includes addressing increasing housing costs and availability of mortgage credit for all. REALTORS® and REALTOR® associations work at all levels of government to safeguard against threats to private property rights. REALTORS® stand for equal access to housing and the removal of barriers that prevent the full, intended use of property. REALTORS® have a vested interest in creating better places to live and improving the quality of life for residents.
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FOOD & TRAVEL FIRST-CLASS DINING AND TRAVEL EXPERIENCES
Paradise Found, Costa Rica
Warm up at home with a classic Irish coffee recipe or zip to the sunny shores of Costa Rica.
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F O O D & T RAV EL | REC I P E
IRISH COFFEE WORDS BY MICHAEL CURCIO, RECIPE BY BILL WITHEROW
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R ECIPE | F OOD & TRAVE L
n the cocktail world, the classics are classic for a reason: They are basic, time tested, and difficult to improve upon. Having a repertoire of ingredients in the home bar to mix a few classic cocktails, coupled with proper glassware and fresh garnishes, underpins one’s hosting abilities—serving a great drink goes a long way to making others feel welcome. But sometimes a little variation or riffing on a classic is a good way to mark a special occasion, especially when bellying up to bars staffed by professional mixologists is a rare occurrence in today’s world. When Country extended an invitation to guest write for the Food section, I immediately thought of Will Witherow, friend, beverage manager, and head bartender at Live Oak in the Del Ray neighborhood of Alexandria, Virginia. Spending many hours at his bar, I have come to love his pragmatic approach to cocktails. One will never find a fancy drink name on his menu, though he certainly applies a culinary-like passion to everything he puts into a glass. For this month’s St. Patrick’s Day holiday, there’s nothing better than an Irish Coffee, as a shot of Jameson and a pint of Guinness easily stand on their own merits. The ingredients are simple: coffee, whiskey, simple syrup, and whipped cream. Fresh ingredients made from scratch whenever possible are key. Coffee should be black (not flavored), freshly ground and brewed using your favorite method. Use a respectable Irish whiskey—you can’t go wrong with Jameson, Tullamore, or Bushmills—or riff by substituting the whiskey base with Belle Isle Cold Brew Moonshine. Finally, ditch the canned whipped cream and make it from scratch by beating heavy cream for a few minutes. Step up the flavor profile (and proof ) of the whipped cream by adding a splash of Frangelico or Crème de menthe. A more creative approach to flavorful whipped cream is steeping Honey Nut Cheerios in the heavy cream before whipping—a nostalgic nod to those who drank the leftover cereal milk as a child. IRISH COFFEE serves one 4 ounces fresh black coffee 1 ½ ounces Irish whiskey ¾ ounce simple syrup Freshly made whipped cream ¾ cup Honey Nut Cheerios and 1½ teaspoons sugar for the whipped cream, optional* • A sprinkle of nutmeg, for garnish • • • • •
Pour freshly brewed coffee into a glass mug or mug of your choice. Stir in whiskey and simple syrup. Top with whipped cream and a sprinkle of nutmeg. *To make Honey Nut Cheerios infused whipped cream, place 1 cup chilled heavy cream and ¾ cup Honey Nut Cheerios in a large jar with a tight-fitting lid. Shake vigorously and let steep for 20 minutes in the refrigerator. Strain through a fine mesh sieve, pressing gently on the cereal to release the flavored cream. Pour the chilled, strained cream into the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a whisk attachment or beat with a hand mixer. When cream begins to thicken, add the sugar and beat until firm. Cheers to a warm cocktail to help get through winter’s final throes. Michael Curcio is the co-owner and founder of Bo & Ivy Distillers in northeast Washington D.C. and Will Witherow is the beverage manager at Live Oak Del Ray in Alexandria, VA. For more information, visit @ liveoakdelray on Instagram and boandivy.com. JWC | COUNTRY 49
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THE PREMIER MAGAZINE ABOUT THE BARRINGTONS
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2/22/21 9:30 AM
F IR ST CL ASS | F OOD & T RAVE L Elevated terrace and plunge pool of Casa Blanca
On a heavenly slice of Costa Rica, a former tech magnate offers a luxury lifestyle at a slower pace. WORDS AND PHOTOGRAPHY BY ROBIN SUBAR
e are the real deal,” Charles Brewer says confidently. “The car-freeness is what makes this place unique. Being here makes you a nicer person.” After spending a long weekend at Las Catalinas, I am convinced that he literally walks the walk, embodying the local pura vida, or pure life, culture. Brewer, an Atlanta-based entrepreneur and founder of the dotcom MindSpring Enterprise, is the real estate developer behind Las Catalinas. The 1,200-acre seaside utopia, located on the Guanacaste Coast of Costa Rica, is reminiscent of medieval hill towns like Cinque Terre, Italy and Ronda, Spain. Brewer confesses his priorities have shifted with age. In contrast to his former swashbuckling life on the road, he’s now a grandfather with desires to live at a slower, gentler pace. He relishes time spent with his grandchildren in an environment where they can roam with sheer abandon. He calls it “kid freedom”—a term that encompasses how he once felt as a child in a bygone era. For Brewer, it was a time JWC | COUNTRY 51
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F O O D & T RAV EL | FI RS T CL ASS
Fresh Tico breakfast prepared daily by house mom
when community, wellness, and nature were highly valued. Rooted in lessons of how cities and towns have been built for centuries, Las Catalinas is inspired by a movement known as New Urbanism. The goal is to foster more human-to-human and human-to-nature contact by designing spaces that are walkable and accessible. “We are ultra local,” declares Sara Bega, Las Catalinas’ town architect. “Our most important value is sociability.” Bega is a protégée of Douglas Duany, renowned professor at the University of Notre Dame and Las Catalinas’ maiden architect. The school remains a valued asset to the town, with a continued partnership where students can spend their fifth year on site to aid in its emerging design. Las Catalinas is inhabited by expats from around the globe. Its ultimate goal is to maintain a population of 40 percent full-time residents and 180 residences. While 25 miles of trails have been built for hiking and biking, a thousand acres of unspoiled land will remain in place, serving as a nature preserve. Within the town, cobblestone streets lead the way to a diverse and colorful mix of buildings, from 350-square-foot studios to Colonial-style castles—all interspersed with shopping plazas and parks.
Casa Azul, the private villa at which I stayed, is true to its name— vibrant, azure-toned, and facing the ocean. Maria, the house mom, welcomed guests with a molcajete of her verdant guacamole and fresh lemonade. The laughter of neighbors could be heard, making me take notice of how the villas are designed to invite guests to commune with one another. Many of the design materials at Las Catalinas are locally sourced and built in-house. Third-generation woodworkers constructed the wood floors with teak, and pergolas were made of Guanacaste wood and cana brava, or sugar cane. Custom woven furniture and vibrant hand sewn pillows and linens are designed and manufactured in a local workshop. Andrina Fonseca, owner of D-Aqui Design insisted on bringing both the design and manufacturing of tiles onto the premises. Visitors enamored of the villas can shop at her studio for authentic Costa Rican interiors made by trusted artisans. A unique aspect of Las Catalinas is that it caters to a diverse mix of visitors. The Beach Club boasts a pool for families (offering swim lessons), a 25-meter lap pool for serious swimmers, and a majestic infinity pool from which couples can watch the sunset. Serious athletes participate in The Las Catalinas Triathlon and the annual Pura Vida Ride Paddle Battle, the town’s oldest event. Locals and visitors cruise the vast trails on bike and foot while surfers catch the morning sets. The Pura Vida Ride Shop is a haven for sports enthusiasts specializing in sales and rentals of paddleboards, kayaks, mountain bikes, and guided tours. For those seeking less activity and more respite, the WAKE day spa offers facials, body treatments, and even a small boutique. True shoppers can also browse haute interiors at D-Aqui Design or wander a few doors down to LaPula for local fashion and jewelry. Expect to be greeted with “pura vida” by every local who passes. There is always the option of snoozing to the percussive crash of the waves from a hammock on secluded Playa Dantita. Gastronomes will also feel as if they’re in paradise. The upscale Copper and Stone Market stocks organic produce, gluten-free baked goods, juices and smoothies, artisan sandwiches, and small batch beers on draft. Downstairs at La Cava, one of the most recognized wine caves in Costa Rica, Chef Damian Geneau offered flutes of Freixenet Cava and wool shawls to keep chills at bay. At Limonada, the signature beachside restaurant on Playa Danta, casual elegance is the theme. We started with housemade dips, including black bean and buffalo chickpea puree. And a tantalizing coconut ceviche was prepared by a familiar face—the chef, Gilberto, was spotted earlier on the beach, foraging edible herbs like verdolaga (purslane). Our hostess Nina Lora planned a lunch the following day with diving instructor Ernst van der Poll of ConnectOcean. Born in South Africa and educated at MIT, van der Poll—a former diving instructor for the Crown Prince of Dubai— uses scuba diving, guided expeditions, and swim classes as an opportunity to educate guests about environmental policies and social responsibility. I spent my final afternoon on Playa Danta, taking a kayak out to sunbathe on the floating dock, and finished with a sunset trail hike led by Community Affairs Director Michael Garcia. Garcia expertly idenitified native species of plants and their medicinal uses. When we reached the summit, with a picturesque view of the sea and the town, Brewer’s message rang true. Las Catalinas is the real deal. For more information, visit lascatalinascr.com.
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F IR ST CL ASS | F OOD & T RAVE L
Master bedroom of Casa Blanca
Colorful Homes on Calle la Ronda
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Join us for the Virtual Home Design Trends 2021 Forecast A Conversation with Designers Nicole Ryan & Claudia Pop
The way we live is changing, and so are our homes! Grab your coffee and join us for a virtual Saturday morning all about Home Design Trends for 2021. Whether you’re planning a simple home fashion update or a complete remodel, here’s all the information you will need. Learn about hot new colors, what’s new in cabinetry style, how to apply textures, and what finishes are best to make every room in your home reflect the new way you live. A live Q&A will follow the Design Trends Forcast
Saturday March 27th or April 24th
10 am - 11:15 am
Virtual Conversation Via Zoom
RSVP at 847-836-2600 or advancedesignstudio.com/home-remodeling-events
kitchens • baths • lower levels • additions • renovations • handyman
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HOUSE & HOME AN INSIDE LOOK AT CHICAGO’S MOST EXCLUSIVE ADDRESS—THE BARRINGTONS
Terrazzo trays and bowls, unisonhome.com
Discover new home items to fall in love with and delight in daydreaming of sunny days in Barrington, Spain, and off the coast of Africa. JWC | COUNTRY 55
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H O US E & HO M E | LUX URY OF F ER INGS
WHAT YOU GET FOR $1 MILLION As spring tip toes towards us, Luxury Offerings brings you homes full of sunshine in the Balearic Islands off the coast of Spain, on the sunny shores of Mauritius in the Southern Hemisphere, and a gorgeous home in Barrington—all available for $1 million. WORDS BY MEGAN WEISBERG JWC | COUNTRY 56
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LUXURY OF F ER INGS | HOUSE & HOME
his Mallorcan country house in the village of Montuiri is surrounded by nature with views across the plains of Mallorca towards the Sierra Tramuntana (now a UNESCO World Heritage Site). In addition to the main house, there is also a guest house, another apartment, and a separate house at the foot of the hill. With a
The Details: 6 Bedrooms, 5 Baths • 3,444.45 square feet, $290 per square foot • Swimming pool, vegetable garden Contact: Lisa Schreiber, Engel & Völkers, firstname.lastname@example.org
total of 6 bedrooms and 5 bathrooms, this property offers plenty of space for families, but also the option of renting it out to tourists as the property has an existing vacation rental license. The main house has been renovated and has central heating and underfloor heating in the bathroom, a newly installed fireplace, a new kitchen, and new bathroom. JWC | COUNTRY 57
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H O US E & HO M E | LUX URY OF F ER INGS
BARRINGTON $999,999 128 NORTH WYNSTONE DRIVE, BARRINGTON
n updated stone home overlooks Wynstone’s 16th hole and the scenic lake on the only Nicklaus golf course in Illinois. The new urban-inspired kitchen features whitewashed Chicago brick, Cambria luxury series counters, Viking Tuscany appliances, and Mouser custom cabinetry. Fall in
The Details: 4 Bedrooms, 4.2 Baths • 8,453 finished square feet, $181 per square foot (ASF) • Butler’s pantry, Dagget gym, and yoga studio • Sits on approximately 0.98 acres Contact: Lori Rowe, Coldwell Banker, Rowe@cbrealty.com
love with the freshly refinished floors, new iron lights, and a full wall of windows in the great room that capture amazing views. The master suite boasts a sitting area along with a large boutique closet that has its own island. The walkout basement has a recreation room with a stone fireplace and bar, along with a theater room.
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LUXURY OF F ER INGS | HOUSE & HOME
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H O US E & HO M E | LUX URY OF F ER INGS
VILLA IN MAURITIUS $1,100,000 Million TAMARIN BAY
his magnificent penthouse overlooking Tamarin Bay in Mauritius off the coast of Africa and east of Madagascar, offers the best of both worlds—the lock-up-and-go convenience of an apartment and all the space of a luxurious house. At the lower level entrance is a private lobby where an elevator brings guests up to the open plan living area which flows out to a large terrace with a plunge pool and panoramic views.
The Details: 3 Bedrooms, 3 Baths • 3,498 square feet, $285 per square foot • Access to beach with boating, fishing, golfing, horse riding, and hiking area, along with access to communal pool, gym, and sauna Contact: Jennifer Hirst, Sotheby’s International Realty, email@example.com
A spacious fully equipped modern kitchen with a convenient center island and ample cupboard space is an entertainer’s dream. All three en-suite bedrooms open out to terraces and enjoy stunning sea views and have Italian designed bathrooms. This exceptional north-facing home is set in a tranquil hillside position, yet only a few minutes drive from the beach and all the amenities of Tamarin.
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LUXURY OF F ER INGS | HOUSE & HOME
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H O US E & HO M E | HO M E S TYL E
MILES REDD Deconstructed Stripe rug, pattersonflynnmartin.com
LARGE PROCELAIN TOBACCO Leaf Platter, shopallisoncaccoma.com
AARKE stainless steel sparkling water bottle, goop.com
BRIGHTEN UP THE EVERYDAY Add a sense of playfulness and color to your home. MARLON Sectional, jaysonhome.com
EDITED BY MEGAN WEISBERG
ELENA LYAKIR’S all the happy moments, abchome.com
NAPPA dori bar tool kit, goop.com
SOREN bowls, jaysonhome.com
EKOBO bamboo lemon bath accessories, unisonhome.com
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Creating living environments that bring family and friends together since 1960 Maintenance
847-566-1233 schedule your complimentary consultation today
2/21/21 8:28 PM
H O US E & HO M E | I N T H E GAR DEN
EARLY SPRING PLANTING
March brings the first gardening opportunities for those who are itching to dig in the dirt.
WORDS BY WENDY FRANZEN
t may seem too early, but March is the ideal time to plan and begin planting a vegetable garden. In the first weeks of the month, it is great fun to peruse seed catalogs, seed company websites, and local garden centers. Organic, non-GMO seed company Renee’s Garden carries vegetable, herb, and flower varieties for home gardeners with exceptional flavor and garden performance, including time-tested heirlooms. Botanical Interests seed company also carries many organic and heirloom seed varieties, and it has an easy-to-navigate website that includes Sow and Grow Guides for many of its seed offerings. If last season’s seed packets are kicking around in the mudroom, test the seeds’ ability to germinate by placing 10 or so between moist paper towels. Blow open a zip-top bag, add the seed filled paper towels and reseal, creating a de facto mini-green house. Keep warm and moist but out of direct sunlight, and if fewer than six sprout within five to seven days, it is time to purchase new ones.
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IN THE GAR DEN| HOUSE & HOME
OPPOSITE PAGE TOP: Carrot seeds can be sewn at the end of March. OPPOSITE PAGE BOTTOM: Spring peas on the vine. LEFT: Lettuces grow well in spring, preferring cooler soil for sprouting. ABOVE: Fresh from the garden radishes, ready for the salad bowl.
Mid-month, it is time to pull on the Wellies and head outdoors to check the soil temperature with a soil thermometer, which is inexpensive and widely available at garden centers. Spinach and lettuces are frost hearty and will germinate in temperatures as low as 35 degrees, albeit more prolifically above 45 and below 70 degrees. Another general rule for early planting is that if the ground can be worked, cool-season vegetable seeds can be planted. Once sprouted, it is of the utmost importance to protect the foliage of new seedlings from frost, covering with sheets or floating row covers if the air temperature dips below 32 degrees at night. The good
news is spinach and certain lettuces can be harvested in six to eight weeks, and delicious, peppery, easy-to-grow arugula will be ready within four weeks. Continue with successive sowings, every ten days for spinach and three weeks for head lettuce, throughout spring and early summer for a constant supply of salad. When the soil warms up a bit more toward the end of March—a safe bet is consistent temperatures near 50 degrees—kale, radicchio, and pea seeds can be sown, as well as the seeds of broccoli and root vegetables like radishes, carrots, and onions. Peas, which should be grown on a small trellis or a fence unless they are an upright variety, will be ready in 60 to 70 days. Radishes—including the beautiful Easter egg variety—will be ready to pull within one month, and baby carrots as early as 50 to 60 days, depending on the variety. Seed packet directions should offer expected harvest times. Observing the metamorphosis from tiny seed to salad bowl is incredibly rewarding. And before farmers’ markets have opened their doors and markets have received local, organic produce, the intrepid spring gardener will have crisp radishes and arugula salad waiting steps from his or her back door.
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O NE L A S T T HI N G
AN Y GIVEN SNOW DAY Lake Barrington resident Scott Vukovich reflects back on his life on skis. WORDS BY MEGAN WEISBERG ILLUSTRATION BY ROBERT RISKO
owder white snowflakes dance their way to the ground, overhead the sky is banked in white clouds, and a chill hangs in the air. From a distance, one can see the blue jacket of Scott Vukovich zipping down the mountain at Wilmot Mountain Ski Resort—30 miles away in Wisconsin. As one of the longest serving ski instructors at Wilmot, Vukovich reflects on his time as a ski instructor and how it’s really his family away from home. “This is definitely not a job,” shares Vukovich, “it’s truly a passion.” “I grew up near Valparaiso, Indiana, home of The Pines—a tiny ski area with a rope tow,” says Vukovich. “As a young kid, Santa brought me skis for Christmas—I strapped ‘em on, careened down a hill by my house, crashed badly at the bottom and was hooked for life.” His Dad “was a sweetheart,” shares Vukovich, “driving us two hours to the big mountain at Wilmot, waiting for us all day just hanging around the lodge, and then the return trip home.” When Vukovich later found himself living in Illinois 35 minutes from Wilmot, he never missed a chance to ski on a Tuesday after work—a luxury which led the then 28-year old to apply for a position as a ski instructor. “I remember being 13 years old, standing in line to get my lift ticket and watching all of the instructors in the ski school room laughing and joking. They looked like they were all having a great time, and I thought ‘I want to be a part of this someday.’” At Wilmot, Vukovich designed a system to create his favorite “bumps” as he calls them on the mountain—the mogul run. “I feel privileged that Wilmot has empowered me to have designed a method to create the moguls on the mountain, adding to their organization and rhythm. I believe that it is a ‘feature,’ like the terrain park or the race program that the guests love.” “When I can take a novice snow plower and get them to match their skis for the first time, it’s such an epiphany that I still get choked up,” says Vukovich. “Or when I coach that junior racer to his first NASTAR award, or get that nervous little girl to safely and comfortably negotiate a mogul run—she’s hooked for life! How cool is that!” “You need to have a deep passion for the sport and really want to share that with, well everybody,” says Vukovich, “and what a better way to do that than to be a ski instructor.” Recalling a ski trip to Breckenridge, Col-
orado the passion is evident as Vukovich describes “how the run starts off super steep out of the gate on a 50-degree slope, heads into bowls of foot deep powder, then an awesome bump run, finishing with blue groomers a half mile wide ... I just laid down my edges and let it rip. The training I received from all my years on staff (and continue to get and offer) enable me to ski at a level that makes such a run with so many different facets amazing and not terrifying. This is the same training that we offer all of our guests as well.” For Vukovich, Wilmot really is “where epic begins.” For more information, visit wilmotmountain.com.
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SERVICE YOU WANT - RESULTS YOU DESERVE #1 in Barrington for 11 YEARS RUNNING*
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