I'm not sure how many times we can brag on Ciara and Russell Wilson, but here's one more for you. The two traveled to Venice, Italy to celebrate their five-year anniversary and we can't help but to swoon over the pics.
It all started last week when a video of the two broke the internet while posing for photos in a hotel suite. Captioned:
"He said pack your bags, we're going to Italy."
The lovebirds rocked shades and matching Versace for the gawds and showed off their usual enviable love.
Russ followed Ciara with:
"5 years of Love as husband & wife, mom & dad, best friends, business partners and more. You leave me speechless. There are no words that could ever describe my love for you. Only Heaven knows. 5 years & Forever to go! Andiamo!"
The rest is in "OK, it's time for a baecation" history as they visited landmarks, ate in the best restaurants, and more.
And as they should, because Venice has become a popular celeb/tourism hotspot.
Luca Zanon/Awakening/GC Images
Actually, Italy has always been a popular celebrity romance destination, with couples such as Katy Perry and Orlando Bloom and John Legend and Chrissy Teigen recently trading in the fast life and heading to the land of pasta, architecture, and love with bae. And in 2018, Serena Williams famously told her husband she wanted pasta for dinner and he swooped her off to Venice for a few days as well. But now, with outside opening back up, Venice is becoming a hotspot for them hot spots, m'kay?!
So, if you and the boo are looking to Venice for your next baecation, here's what you should check out while there:
Luca Zanon/Awakening/GC Images
Italy is known for its endless food contribution to the world. But actually being in Italy, gives Olive Garden a run for its money. With freshly made pastas, and ingredients that will even make granny mad, visiting the various amounts of restaurants, or taking the time to take a cooking class is what baecation dreams are made of. And although pasta and pizza are staples, the reality, however, is that Italy is home to variety of cuisines and people often make the mistake of flocking to touristy eateries serving food that reflects their expectations (such as pasta and pizza) and not what the locals or veneziani really eat.
But Venice's unique lagoon location and proximity to the island gardens of Sant'Erasmo, means that their genuine cuisine consists of some truly flavorful and refined dishes relying heavily on fish and vegetables.
Spend a night out on the town and try local dishes such as the sarde in saor, risotto al nero di seppia, fritole, or the various, various amounts of wine. Bon appetit!
The Canals + Gondola Rides
The gondola is a traditional Venetian rowing boat, similar to a canoe, that's flat-bottomed and narrow in order to fit along with other gondolas into small canals in Venice. The gondola is operated by a gondolier with a rowing oar. In the past, it was used as a major mode of transportation in Venice. These days, however, the gondola ride is primarily a tourist attraction.There is no better way to see many amazing parts of Venice without this gondola ride. Venice historically has been connected by canals, so the only way to see many historical sights or just beautiful architecture is from the water.
Also, riding the gondola gives you a different angle from the water and you get a much better view of many structures. Plan to be serenaded by the gondoliers and see the best of what Venice has to offer.
(Rides are generally 40 minutes and during the day, costs 80 euros. If you want a longer ride, every 20 minutes will cost you $40 extra. After 7 p.m., the gondola rides are slightly more expensive, costing 100 euros for a 40-minute ride).
The Architecture Tours
If you don't appreciate architecture, then Venice may not be the place for you. Venice's architecture is unlike that of anywhere else in the world—owing, of course, to its natural context. Everything is built on stilts in the middle of a lagoon and it's so amazingly popular, that the Venice Biennale of Architecture exhibition, also known as Mostra di Architettura di Venezia (in Italian), is held every other year. Grab bae and explore the history of Venice through its buildings, squares and canals to see the works by Carlo Scarpa and Mario Botta (who shaped much of Venice).
Also, add the Rialto Neighborhood, St. Mark's Square, Campo San Giovanni e Paolo, and Campo Santa Maria Formosa to your to-do list as well.
Are you a member of our insiders squad? Join us in the xoTribe Members Community today!
Featured image by Luca Zanon/Awakening/GC Images
- Ciara and Russell Wilson's Venice Vacation Is Setting a New ... ›
- Ciara and Russell Wilson Are Both Fashion and Couple Goals on ... ›
- Ciara and Russell Wilson Take Italy Summer Vacation | POPSUGAR ... ›
- Ciara and Russell Wilson Ooze Italian Glam During Venice Getaway ... ›
- Ciara and Russell Wilson get cozy in Venice and more star snaps ›
Charmin Michelle is a southern native and creative spirit who works as a content marketer and events manager in Chicago. She enjoys traveling, #SummertimeChi, and the journey of mastering womanhood. Connect with her on Instagram @charminmichelle.
How Content Creators Hey Fran Hey And Shameless Maya Embraced The Pivot
This article is in partnership with Meta Elevate.
If you’ve been on the internet at all within the past decade, chances are the names Hey Fran Hey and Shameless Maya (aka Maya Washington) have come across your screen. These content creators have touched every platform on the web, spreading joy to help women everywhere live their best lives. From Fran’s healing natural remedies to Maya’s words of wisdom, both of these content creators have built a loyal following by sharing honest, useful, and vulnerable content. But in search of a life that lends to more creativity, freedom, and space, these digital mavens have moved from their bustling big cities (New York City and Los Angeles respectively) to more remote locations, taking their popular digital brands with them.
Content Creators Hey Fran Hey and Maya Washington Talk "Embracing The Pivot"www.youtube.com
In partnership with Meta Elevate — an online learning platform that provides Black, Hispanic, and Latinx-owned businesses access to 1:1 mentoring, digital skills training, and community — xoNecole teamed up with Franscheska Medina and Maya Washington on IG live recently for a candid conversation about how they’ve embraced the pivot by changing their surroundings to ultimately bring out the best in themselves and their work. Fran, a New York City native, moved from the Big Apple to Portland, Oregon a year ago. Feeling overstimulated by the hustle and bustle of city life, Fran headed to the Pacific Northwest in search of a more easeful life.
Her cross-country move is the backdrop for her new campaign with Meta Elevate— a perfectly-timed commercial that shows how you can level up from wherever you land with the support of free resources like Meta Elevate. Similarly, Maya packed up her life in Los Angeles and moved to Sweden, where she now resides with her husband and adorable daughter. Maya’s life is much more rural and farm-like than it had been in California, but she is thriving in this peaceful new setting while finding her groove as a new mom.
While Maya is steadily building and growing her digital brand as a self-proclaimed “mom coming out of early retirement,” Fran is redefining her own professional grind. “It’s been a year since I moved from New York City to Portland, Oregon,” says Fran. “I think the season I’m in is figuring out how to stay successful while also slowing down.” A slower-paced life has unlocked so many creative possibilities and opportunities for these ladies, and our conversation with them is a well-needed reminder that your success is not tied to your location…especially with the internet at your fingertips. Tapping into a community like Meta Elevate can help Black, Hispanic, and Latinx entrepreneurs and content creators stay connected to like minds and educated on new digital skills and tools that can help scale their businesses.
During a beautiful moment in the conversation, Fran gives Maya her flowers for being an innovator in the digital space. Back when “influencing” was in its infancy and creators were just trying to find their way, Fran says Maya was way ahead of her time. “I give Maya credit for being one of the pioneers in the digital space,” Fran said. “Maya is a one-person machine, and I always tell her she really changed the game on what ads, campaigns, and videos, in general, should look like.”
When asked what advice she’d give content creators, Maya says the key is having faith even when you don’t see the results just yet. “It’s so easy to look at what is, despite you pouring your heart into this thing that may not be giving you the returns that you thought,” she says. “Still operate from a place of love and authenticity. Have faith and do the work. A lot of people are positive thinkers, but that’s the thinking part. You also have to put your faith into work and do the work.”
Fran ultimately encourages content creators and budding entrepreneurs to take full advantage of Meta Elevate’s vast offerings to educate themselves on how to build and grow their businesses online. “It took me ten years to get to the point where I’m making ads at this level,” she says. “I didn’t have those resources in 2010. I love the partnership with Meta Elevate because they’re providing these resources for free. I just think of the people that wouldn’t be able to afford that education and information otherwise. So to amplify a company like this just feels right.”
Watch the full conversation with the link above, and join the Meta Elevate community to connect with fellow businesses and creatives that are #OnTheRiseTogether.
Featured image courtesy of Shameless Maya and Hey Fran Hey
Exclusive: 'Praise This' Stars Chloe Bailey And Anjelika Washington Talk Acceptance And Their Favorite Scenes
There's nothing like a feel-good movie that you can watch with friends and family, and that's exactly what Praise This is. The film, executive produced by Will Packer and directed by Tina Gordon, stars Chloe Bailey, Anjelika Washington, Quavo, and many more, and it tells a story about how one's struggle with their faith can ultimately lead them to find themselves and appreciate the people around them.
In the Peacock original film, Chloe's character Sam has aspirations of becoming a singer, but her mom's death sends her down the wrong path, which puts a strain on her relationship with her dad. In an effort to help her, her dad sends her to live with her aunt and uncle in Atlanta, where she is introduced to the praise team thanks to her cousin Jess, played by Anjelika.
While this may sound like a fit, Sam is very resistant and continues doing things her way, further complicating her relationships with others. However, her undeniable talent breaks through, and she learns a valuable lesson in the end. Praise This isn't your typical church movie. While the story focuses on faith, the church shade throughout the movie is hilarious, and if you grew up in the church, relatable, and the fire mashups of secular and gospel songs will surely keep you entertained. I spoke with Chloe and Anjelika about the film, their characters' dynamic as "cousin-sisters," and the hijinks that happen throughout the film.
ATLANTA, GEORGIA - APRIL 03: Quavo, Tristan Wilds, Janora McDuffie, Jekalyn Carr, Anjelika Washington, Chloe Bailey, Tina Gordon, William Packer, Druski and Big Tank attend the "Praise This" World Premiere at Rialto Center for the Arts at Georgia State University on April 03, 2023 in Atlanta, Georgia.
Photo by Terence Rushin/Getty Images
"I think my favorite scene filming with her would have to be our handshake because we made that up early on, and when Tina was like, 'okay, this is the scene where you pull up to Ty's house, you know, with the little handshake you guys do, you can do it right here,'" Chloe says. "We were like, 'oh.'""
For me, I really loved the scene in the house where I'm showing her my world and everything, and I get to sing for her," says Anjelika. "That was also my scariest day on set was because I was like singing for Chloe Bailey, like the singer. So, anyways, it was like a crazy moment, but I got through it. Chloe sat there [and] was like, 'this is great, this is funny.' She was laughing genuinely the whole time, which made me feel good 'cause then I was like, I'm doing a good job."
Praise This is available on Peacock.
See more from the interview below:
Stars Chloe Bailey and Anjelika Washington Reflect On Their Bond and Secret Handshake
Let’s make things inbox official! Sign up for the xoNecole newsletter for daily love, wellness, career, and exclusive content delivered straight to your inbox.
Feature image by Nykieria Chaney/WireImage