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Celebrating the 1st Birthday of 1 Hotels

#1TurnsOne

Today, we celebrate the 1st birthday of our nature-inspired lifestyle brand with sweet little succulent cupcakes. We hope that our properties in Manhattan and South Beach have inspired you to celebrate the beauty of nature, live well, do better, and connect with the world around you.

We’re thankful to be a part of your journey and we hope you’ll continue to be part of ours as we launch our next property in Brooklyn Bridge Park later this year. It is our mission to change industry standards—to be more than a hospitality brand, but rather a movement with a mindful purpose.

A word from our founder, Chairman and CEO of Starwood Capital Group, Barry Sternlicht who is the mastermind behind our mission-driven luxury lifestyle brand:

“It’s simple. We have an impact on nature and nature has an impact on us. I decided that if I was ever going to create another hotel, I wanted it to be more than a brand; I wanted it to be a cause. People are already living like this and are now looking for ways to travel in the same fashion. At first, our guests may simply notice the graceful twist of driftwood in the furnishings. However, what we are really offering is an evolution of the entire hotel experience, one that is more natural in regards to the way we arrive, sleep, eat, relax and do. By focusing on simple changes that make life better, we will encourage guests to stop, recalibrate and hopefully gain some inspiration from the small steps we have taken to protect nature at each property.”

We want to extend our warm thanks to our community partners: JUST Water, Sprout Home, TeslaPlant The Future, Barkbox, Spartan, Mind Body Green, V Art of Wellness, Tom Colicchio, Jonathan Waxman, Triple Clear, Keetsa

How to Make Your Own Succulent Cupcakes:

We found inspiration for our own succulent cupcakes via the Pixel Whisk blog, but made a few tweaks along the way. Here’s our quick guide:

Tools Needed:
1. White or yellow pre-made fondant

2. Gel food color in brown, cherry pink, mint green and forest green.

3. Flower cookie cutters (buy a few different sizes of cutters to create the layers of succulent leaves)

4. A rolling pin

5. Small & medium sized cupcake molds

6. Cupcake wrappers (we used celebratory gold) 

7. Pastry bag decorating kit 

Succulents:
1. Dye a handful of fondant with forest green food color gel, and another handful with mint green food color gel.

2. Sprinkle countertop or large cutting board and rolling pin with powdered sugar to prevent the fondant from sticking.

3. Roll out fondant with rolling pin to about 1/4 or an 1/8-inch thick, depending on preference. We used both to create a few different size succulent plants.

4. Use large, medium, and small sized flower shaped cookie cutters to cut out 3-5 pieces each. Once we had the flower shape cut out, we pinched the tips to create the sharper edges of the leaves.

5. Place the large succulent cutout in the small cupcake mold, and layer a medium size cutout on top, then a small size cutout on top of that.

6. Create a tiny 1/8-inch diameter ball to place on top of the succulent plant.

7. Let succulents harden in small cupcake molds until ready to be placed on top of frosted cupcakes. 

Flowers:
1. Mix another handful of fondant with cherry pink food color gel.

2. Dust the countertop and rolling pin with powdered sugar.

3. Roll out the dyed fondant to about 1/8-inch thick.

4. Cut fondant into 1/2 –inch rectangles and roll them into a flower shape.

5. Roll out a bit more pink fondant to ¼-inch thick and use the smallest flower shape cookie cutter to cut out 3-4 flowers. Cut the flower in half, leaving only 3 petals to one flower. Roll the 3 petals in a circle to create a mini-flower shape.

6. Let flowers sit on the counter until firm and ready to be placed on top of frosted cupcakes.

Cake:
1. Use a simple chocolate cake recipe, such as this one from Food.com, and pour the batter into small or medium sized cupcake molds, depending on your preference. We used both.

2. Once cupcakes are baked, let them cool on a wire rack.

3. Once cakes are cooled, they can be “potted” with brown fondant and glazed with mint green buttercream frosting (instructions on how to make the frosting is below).

Frosting:
1. Use a simple buttercream frosting, such as this one from Food Network.

2. Once the frosting is set to a spreadable consistency, add mint green gel food coloring to the desirable shade of green.

3. Add a few large spoonfuls of green frosting into the pastry bag fit with the #352 leaf tip. Reserve remaining green frosting for the top of cupcakes.

Embellishments and Final Touches:
1. To create the “sand” on top of the green frosting, we used crushed Nilla Wafers.

2. Once the cakes are potted using brown fondant and frosted using mint green buttercream, they can be rolled into crushed Nilla Wafers, to create the effect of sand in an actual potted succulent plant.

3. Use the piping bag to create cacti on top of 2-3 cupcakes. Add pink flowers to the top of cacti.

4. Place firm succulent plants to the top of remaining cupcakes.