How We Met: Kristen

Mount Desert Island, Maine, 11 years ago. A friend and colleague was hosting a dinner party for her many friends to celebrate the long awaited first signs of spring after a frightful winter.  Her husband got on the phone with me to hint that he invited a gentleman that I “might be interested in meeting…he’s single.” I wasn’t particularly in the market as I had recently become single myself and was savoring the freedom.


I arrived late to the party with my makings for my famous margaritas in hand. In the kitchen, among the swirl of people that I knew, I spied the person I was sure was “that gentleman.” Our eyes locked. We glanced at each other periodically throughout the evening but were never properly introduced.


When seated for dinner at a long farm table, he was at the opposite end from me so we didn’t talk directly. I remember the wonderful stories he shared at the table. Someone announced that the wine had run dry. Richard stood up and said, “No worries, I have a case in my truck.” Toward the end of the evening, we were close enough to speak and he introduced himself. After some small talk, he asked me what I like to do for fun. “I love to travel and stay in great hotels,” I blurted. 


This was a fact as I worked for the Ritz Carlton and held airline flight benefits from my marriage but the copious amounts of wine we had imbibed (in vino verite) made me speak the truth aloud.


I’ll never forget the look of surprise on his face and I thought, 'Oh God, that was a ridiculous thing to say.' Then he fired back with the same enthusiasm, “Me, too! I just came back from a stay at a Four Seasons, last week!”


As we said our goodnights, he quipped, “See you at the Ritz.”


And so he did. Over these eleven years, we have stayed in great hotels all over the world and learned so much from each of them about what a living space can be. Those experiences have informed much of our thinking in the development and launch of “Food & Shelter Properties.”