If I Had Maintained This Blog…

October 08, 2013 :: Posted by - simplyjen :: Category - Celebs, Love, Ramblings, Travel

I would have written about my annual birthday trip abroad that this year took me on ethereal trip to Berlin with my sister Kim.

I would have written about the cross-country road trip Dhani Jones and I took as research for our novel in progress. It’s going to be amazing #EmmaandGabe

I would have posted a lot of photos from It’s Gawd, my first foray into movie-making. I was Casting Director and Co-Producer of the film that wrapped last week and stars Tommy Chong, Booboo Stewart, Rebecca Mader, Luke Perry (my teenage self is still smiling), Mara Hall, Cindy Vela an Susie Hillard.

There are many things I would have shared if I maintained this blog. Maybe one day I’ll retroactively share travel tips for Berlin, gems missed by many in Middle America and more about the movie (when it comes out!). In the meantime, if you wonder why this blog hasn’t been maintained..I’ve been traveling, working on a book and a movie 😉

Virgin America Reaches Another Loft-y Goal

December 20, 2012 :: Posted by - simplyjen :: Category - Ramblings, Travel

Did you know that you can see the Hollywood sign from a window at LAX, 25 miles away?

VXLoft Me

Well, you’d have to specifically be looking out the window in the shiny new Virgin America Loft in Terminal 3 of LAX and playing with their over-sized binoculars, as I was today while waiting for a flight to NYC.

Virgin America LoftThe Virgin America Loft at LAX opened a few days ago, on 12/12/12, and like the experience itself, it’s a level above everything else, a flight (of stairs) up from the gates, and a perfect escape while you’re waiting for your plane to board.

I was running later than planned for my flight (as is generally the case) but once I arrived, fully flustered, to the lounge, it was only a few moments before their signature mood lighting, modern and up-lifting décor and friendly staff melted away the tension and allowed me to leave any anxieties (work scramble before the holiday) at the door.

Not that bringing work in wasn’t an available option (they have outlets and free wi-fi in the loft), but instead I sat and watched the runway like I did when I was a kid, peered through the windows of the plane as it was being cleaned (with the handy binoculars) and, calling upon all my willpower (it’s day five of a five-day alcohol detox) resisted the urge for a Lofty Libation like a “Virgintini” and “Mile-High Margarita” and contented myself with a tall refreshing glass of cucumber water.

Grabbing a bag of Pop Chips on my way out, I boarded my plane feeling like I was starting vacation…And now I’m blogging about it at 35,000 feet en route to NYC while catching up on music videos on their in-flight entertainment system. It’s really the only time I see videos anymore.

If you’re going to find yourself flying Virgin America through LAX anytime soon, a day pass to the Loft is a luxury I recommend you indulge in – and after the cost of Wifi in the airport + coffee and a snack, it pays for itself anyway. Or, you can try buying them in compliments via Twitter. It sometimes works. Follow them and lavish praise on the unparalleled airline @VirginAmerica and maybe they first time will be on them.

Happy Holidays!

Like a Virgin – Doing It For the Very First Time

June 13, 2012 :: Posted by - simplyjen :: Category - Celebs, Travel

Or in this case, like lots of Virgins as Virgin America, Virgin Australia and Virgin Atlantic collaborated to make the first movie ever filmed entirely at 35,000 feet! Oh, and it was shot over three continents in nine days!

Introducing the film at a special private screening opening the LA Film Festival via a video feed from Madagascar (it’s not just the name of a blockbuster cartoon but also a place off the coast of Africa), Virgin Group founder Richard Branson said of the three airline effort, “Threesomes are never easy, someone always feels like they got left out, but I’m happy to say they did it and did it beautifully.”

And, they kept the effort in the family with Virgin Produced handling the production – that included a crew of a couple dozen making movie magic in an airplane – even the hair/make-up team had to abide by laws forbidding normal size hair products and cosmetics on the plane!

The result is a beautiful slice of life love story that had the person sitting between Brittny Gastineau and I (ehem, Rem) saying at the end, “I think I got a little teary.”

Ben & Nicky at the after party

Ben & Nicky at the after party/Photo by Bob Riha

In under 30 minutes, writer and director Kat Coiro (L!fe Happens, While We Were Here and A Case of You), had you sympathizing with Ben Feldman (Mad Men, Drop Dead Diva – and the guy I think I often see at my gym) and rooting for his lovestruck character to get the girl, played by Australian actress Nicky Whelan (Hall Pass).

Check out the trailer and a glimpse behind-the-scenes below and look out for the film in-flight soon!