Did you spot the HomeGoods Hideout contest on social media this year?
Somehow, I won a HomeGoods Hideout — the version involving a trip! It was pretty surprising to win, but so cool and so needed. I got to stay for five days in the New York City HomeGoods Hideout, themed as “Restore.”
People magazine explained while the contest was active:
The theme in New York is “Restore,” and will “allow New Yorkers to get away from the hustle and bustle of their daily lives and enjoy a calming environment complete with luxurious, yet cozy, décor, creating a dreamy sanctuary,” according to the release.
Activities there will include a “tub-side” wine tasting, a barre workout complete with Misty Copeland’s Masterclass, a DIY punch needle pillow-making session, and a virtual astrology and tarot reading session.
There were HomeGoods Hideout pictures and descriptions in the news, but I wasn’t sure what to expect completely. My HomeGoods Hideout was located in Manhattan (downtown). I even had a view of the South Street Seaport and the river!
Of course, I expected a well-styled apartment. But it was so carefully detailed and well thought out. In and of itself, the visit was a tacit lesson in curation, and instructive about the difference between “styled” and “crowded.” (I’m currently rethinking several of my tiered trays.)
I shared images of the gorgeously curated and beautiful space to Instagram:
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And here’s another:
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There were also a lot of really cool features in a getaway designed to be relaxation-centered, and HomeGoods really excelled in creating that. One was a cool punch needle craft kit (which I ended up bringing home to share with my daughter). Another was the most amazing reading from the insanely talented Veronica Varlow. That was such a huge highlight, and it was an incredibly fun and insightful conversation.
A third thing was a tub-side wine tasting, but I am not a huge drinker. I brought bath bombs (and the apartment was stocked with those, as well as luxe towels, body brushes, shower puffs, soaps, decanter soaps, pumice brushes…)
One of the things I noticed was this experience was the perfect length. Short enough to not be disruptive or to enable responsibilities to pile up, but long enough to try several awesome restaurants, take long baths every night, and do enough nothing without defaulting to “chores I’ve been meaning to do.”
That last one has extra significance for me because I’m a young widow, and I very rarely am in a position to not be working or housekeeping. Even extra days off involve some cleaning, cooking, or shopping. Freedom from that is one of the aspects that only this experience could provide for me.
During my stay, I got to check out well-liked local places, delivered to me! Thursday night I ordered from Pisillo Italian Panini, Friday I ordered from Mughlai Grill, Saturday I ordered from Luke’s Lobster (and Milk Bar), and Sunday I ordered Nobu. Also, I snagged some Magnolia Cupcakes for my daughter (her favorite, and pride edition).
A strange thing happened Monday, when I had to check out and drive back home. It was the first morning I actually felt ready to face the day. I was not overtired, not overwhelmed by toting things to my car and navigating Manhattan. Along the way, I obtained a reserve of something I’d long lost touch with …cognitive and physical energy!
(I should also mention that my six-months of limping due to an old knee injury went away during my stay. I attribute that to the magic of HomeGoods Hideout.)
Finally, a super cool feature of the trip was that a HomeGoods Hideout included a very big box. And I got to take home some of my favorite pieces! It was SO exciting and a major bonus. The downside was that my box is a bit heavy. I still have to unpack it, but I might be able to take some pics of my #HomeGoodsFinds to upload.
One thing I realized during my stay was that in recent years, I defaulted to one-click next-day housewares. Moreover, I became accustomed to that so-so quality. Being in a HomeGoods Hideout surrounded by HomeGoods’ items reminded me what nice good quality sheets and linens are, how sturdy proper decorative things are. Basically along the way in my fast-paced life, I’d accumulated far too much disposable quality “one-click” stuff.
It can be hard for me to get out for non-food shopping, but I am definitely going to replace things as they wear out with stuff from HomeGoods and Marshalls. I’d completely forgotten how soft fluffy bathmats are and how well-made and substantive long-lived items are. (Why did we start settling for memory foam bath mats?)
Shopping for speed allows for selecting brand names, but somewhere along the way, quality from that particular one-clicky retailer declined. Staying in a well-curated place reminded me to populate my own space more thoughtfully, and less transiently.
And it showed me I have a lot of low-quality linens of which to dispose. Necessary, useful, and unexpected side-effect.
Overall, it’s still hard to believe I got to stay in the HomeGoods Hangout for five gorgeously appointed, quiet days. It was even more stunning and relaxed than magazines made it sound, and I so strongly appreciate all the souvenirs. Decorating and curating items is a major interest of mine, and my stay also reminded me to be more mindful and intentional in bringing stuff into our space. If you’re reading this next year and if the contest runs again, I highly recommend entering — it’s such a fantastic, restful event, and unlike any other getaway I’ve experienced.