For Sale! Montana Jack’s

Montana Jack’s, located 70 miles southwest of Billings Montana closed and up for sale. Previously it was owned by famous zookeeper Jack Hanna and operated by Chris Lockhart and Gena Burghoff. Lockhart and Burghoff are happy about their time at Montana Jack’s but, “a destination restaurant was not for us, even though we developed a following and a great business.” (Billings Gazette, Erick Olson, 20 Mar. 2016, http://billingsgazette.com/business/columns/have-you-heard/have-you-heard-famed-stillwater-valley-eatery-for-sale-operators/article_341ef39b-30d4-5708-b4b6-260d66437b27.html) Accessed 7 Feb. 2017. Located in Dean Montana, Lockhart and Burghoff ran Montana Jack’s for close to three years.

Jack Hanna and his brother Bush Hanna operated the restaurant back in the 1990’s. Originally the Hanna families are residents of Montana. Known as The Best Restaurant in Dean, Montana Jack’s is located on a 2.15-acre lot and is sized at 5,128 square feet. Colbert Real Estate has it listed for sale at the price of $657,500. “It is a special place, and I hope the new owners can make a go of it,” Burghoff said. (Billings Gazette, Erick Olson, 20 Mar. 2016, http://billingsgazette.com/business/columns/have-you-heard/have-you-heard-famed-stillwater-valley-eatery-for-sale-operators/article_341ef39b-30d4-5708-b4b6-260d66437b27.html) Accessed 7 Feb. 2017.

Originally Montana Jack’s was a restaurant and bar that originated in the 1950’s under the name “Y Bar”. It was known for serving chromium miners that worked at the Benbow Mine. The restaurant shut down in October 2014 and can be found at 1383 Nye Road in Dean Montana. If you find yourself in Stillwater County, 10 miles west of Fishtail and 70 miles southwest of Billings, you should swing by and check the place out. Lockhart and Burghoff will be opening a new restaurant in downtown Red Lodge at 7 N. Broadway, with investors Alexia and David Leuschen. They are eager to try out a restaurant in an area where the population can support them. The restaurant they are opening has no affiliation with Montana Jack’s.

Real Estate Investor Acquires Resource America

Capital Partners LLC, C-III, recently acquired Resource America Inc. C-III is an established commercial real estate investment management company, and as part of the deal, Resource America stockholders received $9.78 per share, or $207 million in total.

Andrew L. Farkas, CEO of C-III, said that the expanded platform allowed the combined company to provide commercial real estate debt as well as equity solutions to both institutions and retail investors. This better positions the company for growth in an expanded market offering.

The merger of C-III and Resource America creates a diversified platform of commercial real estate services combined with more investment products. C-III now owns $13 billion in assets, which include $79 billion of commercial mortgage. The company now manages 57,000 apartments nationwide.

Post-merger, there is a high level of focus to ensure consistent service levels are provided in C-III’s mortgage services, real estate lending, property management and brokerage departments.

C-III engages in a broad range of activities and is among the largest service providers for commercial mortgage backed securities. The corporation leverages real estate expertise to resolve defaulted loans for over 130 trusts, which hold $79 billion of commercial loans. C-III administers approximately $4 billion in products that focus on commercial equity and debt investments. In total, C-III manages nine debt funds, four equity funds, one hybrid debt and equity fund as well as other investment instruments. C-III’s online Real Capital Markets closed $1.7 trillion in asset and loan sales since 1999. C-III has its headquartered in Irving, TX, with additional offices in New York, NY, Greenville, SC and Nashville, TN.

Resource America focuses on consistent value and long-term returns on investments. It has $9 billion in assets, and manages 17,000 multifamily units in 20 states. Resource America raised $1.4 billion through the independent broker-dealer partnerships. This includes $635 million for Resource Real Estate Opportunity REIT and an additional $556 million for REIT II.

Dining Out in Montana

In Red Lodge, Montana rather than the ever popular steaks or burgers this state is known for there is a new dining option in town. The Ox Pasture restaurant can be found on Red Lodge’s main street, and it offers the kind of “farm-to-table” dishes that makes a person genuinely glad they chose this café for a meal. Whether you’re hungry for trout, pork, chicken or local Montana beef, the choice is yours.

However, based on what’s in season at the time is what will be served with your choice of entrée. The unique draw of the Ox Pasture is that every other week the menu changes, and patrons can count on never being bored with the same old choices time after time. A “rotating menu” is an excellent idea and ensures satisfied diners will be back for more.

Opened in May 2016, it didn’t take long for word of the Ox Pasture to spread. Good food speaks for itself, and that’s all the advertising this restaurant needs. Well prepared dishes will be one thing that helps the Ox to thrive and the experience of its owners will be the other. Between them, husband and wife team Gena Burghoff and chef Chris Lockhart have years of experience in the restaurant business and they have put it all to good use in one of their own. And working off of an idea from fourth generation Montanan David Leuschen doesn’t hurt.

Chef Lockhart grew up in England where the farm to table idea and eating locally grown food is nothing new. Traveling internationally, he can’t help but pick up new ideas and with his natural talent in the kitchen that works out very well for Ox Pasture diners. Small restaurants like the Ox have a big advantage over larger establishments. Small means flexible, and using locally grown seasonal ingredients just isn’t an option for most larger restaurants.

Flexibility is where the Ox really shines. Lockhart and sous chef Danny Mowatt get together twice a month and pool their ideas on the possibilities of whatever is in season at the time. Then their ideas are transferred to the rotating menu until it’s time for another change. Fresh, seasonal ingredients can be challenging as there are only so many ways to prepare some things. Whatever the ingredient is, Chef Lockhart will have a way to prepare it straight from “foodie heaven.”

Patrons don’t walk into the Ox and see stirrups or horns hanging from the wall. The main attraction in this tastefully decorated little restaurant is the food, and what they do with it. The whole look of the Ox encourages thoughts of modern country classic with the charm of a French bistro. The only discouraging news about the Ox Pasture is that they are closed in the winter months. You can bet anyone who has dined with them in their first season of business will be waiting for them to open again in the Spring.

The Best Restaurants in the Miami Design District

Miami has tons of restaurants, but some of the best are found in the Miami Design District. I have eaten in several of the restaurants here during the last several years, and I have been highly impressed with what I have found.

Red Carpet Italian

One of the most popular Italian restaurants that I have come across is the Red Carpet Italians. I tried this because I was interested in the possibilities for Italian food in the Miami area. I have a lot of friends that talk about the authenticity of the Italian food, and I was not disappointed. The garlic roles and the pasta are great. I would highly recommend this restaurant to anyone that is interested in Italian food. The ingredients are fresh, and the wine selections are awesome.

Wynwood Kitchen and Bar

When it comes to a having a nice date night, the Wynwood Kitchen and Bar is the best place that you can go in the Miami Design District. It is one of those restaurants in Miami that is known for delicious meals and a cozy restaurant. I like the restaurant because it offers some unique items that you cannot find in a typical restaurant. There are items like the Octopus Skewers that I can’t find anywhere else. The Roasted Beef Chicken is also quite appetizing as well.

This is considered an upscale eatery so it is a bit pricier than the typical restaurant, but I don’t mind. It has some great art work to view while you eat, and I have been several times since I originally went to the location last year.

Crumb on Parchment

When it comes to sweets, there is nothing better than Crumb on Parchment. This is my favorite restaurant. It is a bakery café that has the best sweets that anyone can ever imagine. There are blondie brownies and red velvet cupcakes, and the grilled chicken sandwiches are delicious here. I could go to the Crumb on Parchment every day, and I would never get tired of the chocolate chip cookies and scones. I can get a glass of wine to go with the meal so that makes it an even better retreat for a casual outing.

The Miami Design District has become a great spot for people that like variety. There are a lot of restaurants, so couples and groups of friends can always find something new.

New York’s Finest: Sweet, Savory, and Spa-Rific Gift Baskets

For ages, New York City has been the home of dessert & chocolate gifts/gift baskets. Anytime you visit NYC, and you think of buy chocolate and dessert, you should consider visiting the following stores.
Chelsea Market Baskets

Chelsea Market Baskets offers products consumed by all persons of any age and gender. Some of the products sold by the store are; Sweet $ Savory Feast, costing $142, the Olivina Spa Gift Basket for $98, and the Brooklyn Sweets Set for $68

  • Olivina Spa Gift Basket, going for only $98 comes with body butter, bath soap and a pumice stone engraved from volcanic rock. If you happen to have that one person that is so dear to you, then the Olivina Spa Gift Basket is the ideal product.
  • Brooklyn Sweets is a collection of desserts, chocolates, and candies from craft stores in Brooklyn. Priced at an affordable $69, this selection comes with chocolate bars from the Mast Brothers, caramels from NuNu chocolate, and Salty Road Salt Water Taffy to name a few. A true Brooklyn delight.

 

Eataly

The love of food contained by Eataly not only rubs off its workers but also its clientele. The kinds of products at their counter are pasta, wine, and a sweets-themed gift basket.

And in case you need a large variety of the food stuffs you can treat yourself to “The Eatalian Pantry Box” which includes; Artisanal Olive Oil, Ligurian Pesto, 2 fresh pastas, a can of San Marzano tomato sauce and sparkling lemonade, along with a few other goodies. A treat for lovers of Italian cooking!

Green Spa

For those exceptional women who desire a day for themselves, a spa gift basket is the ultimate solution at-home gateway. According to the ranking that was done by the Gothamist Magazine, The Green Spa appeared to be among the top 10 spas in New York. The kinds of gift sets offered by Green Spa are affordable and occupied with soothing. Be sure to find restorative and beauty products at their stores.

 

Celebrating the New Year in Caribbean Style

New Year’s Eve festivities are different in cultures all around the world, and that’s part of the beauty. When the clock struck 12am on January 1st, 2016, people in the Caribbean celebrated the fresh New Year in true Caribbean style.

San Juan
People in San Juan, Puerto Rico flocked to the Sheraton Puerto Rico Hotel & Casino to dance Latin salsa, relish R&B tunes and simply enjoy the spirit of the massive crowds. The hotel’s New Year party was called “Illusions,” and there were more than 3,000 party people in attendance at the event.

Grand Cayman
Starting at 7pm on New Year’s Eve, fireworks erupted in Camana Bay, a fabulous town center in Grand Cayman filled with a variety of things to do (read more), restaurants to eat at, shops to visit and mroe! After the family friendly light show, adults headed to the ‘No Resolutions’ party where they viewed another set of fireworks at midnight. Following the night’s festivities, many people continued the celebration by taking part in the Westin’s champagne beach brunch on Seven Mile Beach on New Year’s Day.

Bermuda
Bermuda has its own distinctive New Year tradition. While people in New York, New York in Times Square eagerly anticipated the ball dropping, people in St. George, Bermuda waited for — you guessed it — the onion to drop. The party wasn’t only about the onion dropping, however. It was also a lively event that was full of live music and fireworks galore.

Jost Van Dyke
Jost Van Dyke is a tiny island that’s part of the British Virgin Islands. It’s only roughly three square miles. It’s home to Foxy’s Bar, which is the site of the famed party known simply as “Old Years Night.” Jost Van Dyke was definitely the ideal destination for people who wished to celebrate the fresh start of a near year on a gorgeous beach at night. The party was great for people who enjoy drinking, eating delicious food and simply socializing with others. Some of the beverage and food highlights of the event included both lobster barbecue and fruit cocktails.

Aruba
Aruba’s New Year celebrations were also very memorable. Palm Beach is a popular tourist draw on Aruba. It’s also the site of Hilton Aruba Caribbean Resort & Casino, a great place for people who wanted to check out the island’s mesmerizing sky light show. This was a terrific New Year option for families as it was also totally suitable for young children. Gorgeous lights weren’t the sole New Year’s Eve attraction at Palm Beach, however. People on Palm Beach also got the chance to enjoy dancing, live music and incredible food. Children at the event had the opportunity to participate in a variety of fun activities for youngsters.

Nassau
Many people in the Bahamas visited Nassau’s Graycliff Hotel to experience an elegant and sophisticated New Year dinner party. The eight-course dinner was a true feast, with a variety of mouthwatering culinary options such as orzo risotto and Bahamian lobster.

Companies Making It Easier to Own a Yacht

Yachts are one of the first assets people aspire to when coming into wealth, and it used to be a lot harder to own one. Now, businessmen like Andrew Farkas and Jason De Palma have made owning a yacht a lot easier through companies like Island Global Yachting and Vantage Yacht Club. Here are the companies that are changing the process of owning a boat:

Island Global Yachting (IGY):

One of the most difficult aspects of owning a yacht is figuring out where to dock it. Island Global Yachting is a company focused on acquiring, managing, and servicing luxury-yacht marinas, making it easier for yacht owners to find quality locales in the Americas to dock their luxury yachts. Founded by Andrew Farkas in 2005, IGY has built a network of luxury marinas and has its own Anchor Club, the only marina loyalty program for yacht owners. Andrew Farkas developed the idea for the company from his love of yachts and sailing, and has seen the company grow to a total of 14 yachts in the Caribbean and Americas.

Vantage Yacht Club:

Founded by Jason De Palma, Vantage Yacht Club aims to provide an affordable option for people wanting the experience of a private yacht without the hassle and responsibilities. with a variety of membership options, the Vantage Yacht Club allows members to reserve a boat as much or as little as desired. The Vantage Yacht Club offers many different yacht styles to choose from including yachts ranging from 18’-62’. The company is also able to arrange charter management and the buying and selling of a personal boat.

Royal Yachting Association (RYA):

Due to the efforts of the Royal Yachting Association, it is possible to charter a ship from anywhere in the world if you obtain a Yachtmaster’s certificate. The association controls the certification and instruction of sailing, windsurfing and powerboating and aims to make sailing more accessible through education programs. RYA offers 5 different certificates in its boating school, providing craft and basic training. These certifications not only help you feel more comfortable in your own boat, but provide the credibility to be able to charter a boat from other locations.

11 Travel Tips Italians Want You To Know

Over 46 million tourists visit the boot-shaped peninsula each year! They come from all over the world, and many return again and again for a magic that only Italy can deliver.

As Samuel Johnson said, “A man who has not been in Italy, is always conscious of an inferiority, from his not having seen what it is expected a man should see.”

Italians are very kind, and extremely patient (unless they’re driving). They are the guardians of some of history’s most magnificent treasures, and they are used to sharing them. However, there are a few things Italians want Americans to know before you arrive in their country:

1. Dinner: It’s between 7:30-9:00 p.m. Pressing your hungry face to the restaurant’s window at 6:00 p.m. will not change that. Calling for a reservation, and dressing up for dinner, however, will be appreciated.

2. Skin: Not shown so much in Italy. Short skirts, daisy dukes and halter tops do not epitomize the classical fashion taste of Italians. So cover up, unless, of course, you really are at the beach.

3. Bread: It won’t be served with oil and balsamic vinegar (unless the restaurant caters to Americans), so resist asking the server to provide them. Also, bread is not to be eaten with pasta. It’s used to “fare la scarpetta” or “make a little shoe”, to clean the plate of sauce. To do so in a restaurant is a debatable point, so I will let you make that decision! Basically, bread is provided to accompany an appetizer.

4. Simplify Your Schedule: Leave time to wander the crooked, ancient streets on your own. Often, just a few blocks from the main attractions, day-to-day life is unfolding. Leave the crowds. Pause to listen to a street performer. Plan some time where you can get off the well beaten path for a gelato, coffee, or traditional meal with the locals. Besides, if you over schedule, you just get grumpy.

5. Afternoon Closings: This still surprises and perplexes Americans. Many shops will close down for the afternoon from 1:00-4:00 p.m., especially outside the city center. Italians go home to enjoy lunch as a family and relax. Try it!

6. Taxis: You need to call for a taxi, or go to an actual taxi stand. You cannot hail a cab on a street in Italy, although it’s amusing to watch Americans try! The taxi service in Florence is amazingly efficient and punctual, especially when compared to the post office.

7. Italian: It’s what is spoken! Learning a few words and common phrases will make a big difference in your experience. Rather than launching immediately in English, and assuming you will be understood, it’s polite to ask, “Parla l’Inglese?”

Finish out the list of 11 Italian Travel Tips here.

Source: Huffington Post Travel

Restaurant Spotlight: Michael’s Genuine Food & Drink

Michael Schwartz certainly knows how to entertain. The chef and owner of Michael’s Genuine Food & Drink is pleasing the stomachs of those in Miami, Grand Cayman and aboard the Royal Caribbean International one meal at a time. All of his dishes are made with the most delectable and organic ingredients to the area of the restaurant.

Michael’s Genuine Food & Drink- Miami
Michael’s Genuine Food & Drink opened in the Miami Design District in 2007. The Miami Design District is an area filled with culture, design, art and fashion. Michael’s Genuine Food & Drink fits in great with the atmosphere and vastly contributes to the culture of the area. This neighborhood bistro has a main dining room, a bar room and a small entry bar, which features a raw bar every Monday through Saturday from 3pm to 5:30pm.

Michael’s Genuine Food & Drink- Grand Cayman
Michael’s Genuine Food & Drink opened in Camana Bay, a town in Grand Cayman, in June of 2010. The restaurant was voted Cayman’s Favorite Restaurant in 2013 at the Cayman Islands Tourism Association’s 2013 Taste of Cayman Food and Wine Festival. This Cayman Islands restaurant (http://www.camanabay.com/the-town/grand-cayman-restaurants/) has quickly become an island favorite for both locals and those who are traveling to Grand Cayman on vacation. Similar to Schwartz’s Miami restaurant, all of the dishes here are top of the line, organic and homemade. The menu also changes seasonally, which ensures the usage of the freshest in season ingredients. The inside of the main dining room has an open kitchen with a wood-burning oven, which contributes to the atmosphere.

Michael’s Genuine Pub
In 2011, Schwartz struck a deal with Royal Caribbean International to have a seasonal menu onboard the Oasis of the Seas top restaurant, which is called 150 Central Park. This makes Schwartz’s brand of restaurants the first to have a gastropub aboard the Royal Caribbean ships at sea. The menu is well priced and consists of snacks, which all cost $4 and range from falafel to deviled eggs, charcuterie boards and delicious sweet treats for also $4. Schwartz has proven that you can eat great cuisine even while at sea!

New York Accommodations That Suit Everyone’s Needs and Desires

New York City has vibrant business and cultural activities that cater to the needs of residents and visitors of every nationality and occupation. They say that New York City is a city that never sleeps. That may be true, but New York also has an eclectic array of accommodations that pamper and delight the most discriminating person.

Soho-Manhattan area
For the creative person, the SoHo neighborhood is the place where art and culture come to life. Many art galleries line the neighborhood. The SoHo Grand Hotel’s architecture matches Manhattan’s skyline perfectly and has become one of SoHo’s enduring landmarks. Hotel Chelsea has also become a fixture in the neighborhood as part of a four hotel chain named after the iconic Hotel Chelsea. This legendary hotel is currently undergoing renovations to restore it to its original grandeur. Both hotels are conveniently located near art galleries, museums and a vibrant nightlife scene.

Left bank/McCarren-Brooklyn area
The hotels in this area of New York City cater more to business travelers coming from LaGuardia and JFK Airports. The left bank and the McCarren district in Brooklyn borough offer a relaxing, yet vibrant atmosphere for families and businesses to connect and unwind in this urban retreat. The McCarren Hotel and Pool, part of the Hotel Chelsea chain, offers enjoyable views of downtown Manhattan and McCarren Park. Manufacturers of readymade children and women’s apparel know the Park House Hotel in Brooklyn very well as they have hosted their trade show for years. The Park House Hotel caters to the vibrant Jewish community in Brooklyn and offers convenient access to various horticultural areas.

Queensborough/Long Island-Queens area
This area has just recently become more than a place to take off and land from via the nearby airports. It has become the place to go for world class tennis, International food and culture. Queens melting pot of cultures provide a variety of venues and activities for every nationality. The beautiful river views of Long Island city create the perfect respite for the weary traveler. Hotels in this area of the city are often cheaper and more convenient for the bargain hunter and budget conscious business traveler. Z hotel near the East River and steps from the Queensborough Bridge offers world class amenities and free transportation to Manhattan. Only Ruschmeyer’s, part of the hotel Chelsea chain, in Long Island offers more of a getaway in their rustic cabins nestled along the lake in Montauk.

The Bronxs-South and East
History and elegance is not something that comes to mind when this New York City borough is mentioned. However this borough does have a long history with the theater. The historic Bronx Opera House, now converted into a boutique hotel offers both elegance and comfort in a beautiful setting. Close to Yankee Stadium, the historic Bronx Opera House hotel is very convenient for baseball fans and other sports enthusiasts. There are many cheap hotels in the Bronx’s as this area mainly caters to the blue collar class and families who want to visit the Bronx Zoo.

Midtown-Manhattan area
Most tourists focus in on the Midtown area of Manhattan for several reasons. The Empire State Building is one of the most compelling reasons to stay here. History comes alive in the five blocks that cover Midtown Manhattan. One of the most interesting building in Midtown Manhattan is the Martha Washington hotel (part of the Hotel Chelsea chain, under CEO Ed Scheetz) built in 1903 for women who needed a place to stay. Today the Martha Washington caters to everyone. It is conveniently located close by Madison Square Garden and the Fashion District. The “Grand Dame of Madison Avenue”, the Roosevelt Hotel is a perfect place for the weary stockbroker and film enthusiast. The Roosevelt Hotel was featured in films such as “Maid in Manhattan” and “The French Connection.”