Hi! I’m Ella and I run a vacation rentals business in Southwest Florida. Right now I’m in the process of turning my modest gift shop into a combination art studio and creative space.

As a kid, I was always on the go, always busy with some sort of project. Before I ever heard of surrealism, I painted my bedroom walls with fairy creatures and funky-looking objects. Complementing my oil murals were hundreds of plants, big and small, that I pruned and planted. Also inhabiting my eclectic boudoir were several free-flying parakeets, three aquariums full of fish, frogs, hamsters, mice, cats, guide pigs, etcetera. I brought home anything that I could catch outdoors and tried to domesticate it. The place was a combination art gallery/menagerie. I lived in my own reality.   

I moved a lot, which prevented me from keeping much of my art. Discarding the fruits of my creativity each time that I changed addresses was heartbreaking. I have resided in seven different countries and dozens of cities. My period of stability, so to speak, came in Los Angeles, where I lived for about 20 years.   Los Angeles attracted the most unusual people from all over the world.  Every one comes to meet their dreams.  People of Los Angeles live in their own reality, thus it was perfect for me till my fate brought me to everglades Florida.

After a midlife crisis, I climbed out of bed at four in the morning one day, tossed a few things into my Lexus, and headed for the East Coast. My friends called me crazy when they saw me throwing away my art, insisting that I should open a gallery or hold a sale.  Moving to Florida was not as easy, for it placed me away from the creative and unique characters of Los Angeles, the place that I call home.

The creative mind taken out of it’s environment dies . . .so to survive I had to find another home.   Thus, I started building there tropical garden from scratch.  One day I have planted 40 tropical fruit trees, lush, herbs, etc.   In my tropical garden, I feel at home!

After my last trip to Cali land in July 2016, while visiting my best friend Sheila, she and I decided to start our “Zen Projects,” hers on the West Coast and mine on East Coast. The name “Tropical Shore Zen” seemed a perfect fit. Every one of us need a place where we feel at home, that peaceful, balanced and comfortable space, where we can be ourselves. I call myself a philanthropist, but since I am not rich, have to be limited in my generosity. For personal reasons, I have chosen to contribute to a foster home in South Russia, where I originally come from. A good chunk of the proceeds will go to the children. I have always been against commercial art. A true artist creates not for profit.


Creating that special Zen place or bringing a little of it home one of the best things that you can do to help instill balance in your life. Tropical Shore Zen is the perfect place if you are looking for a home décor that is beautiful, affordable, suited to any taste and actually improves health and wellness. A small area where you can situate a little air plant is a perfect way to connect with nature in urban homes with limited outdoor space. Living with plants is so good for us in so many different ways. First, they give a home a sense of completeness. Some studies indicate that houseplants can lower blood pressure, relieves stress and even ward off the common cold. In addition, there is evidence that they increase the oxygen content in the air, and even help remove or dilute toxins such as benzene, formaldehyde and trichloroethylene—common chemicals that can cause adverse health effects.

My intention is to create art and/or unique gifts that anyone can afford and place in his or her home.

To think about:

  • Bloom from within.
  • The universe is not punishing or blessing you, merely responding responsible to the vibes that you are emitting.
  • “Flowers always make people better, happier and more helpful. They are sunshine, food and medicine to the soul.” – Luther Burbank
  • Some days it storms, and some days it shines. This is how flowers grow.
  • Stay patient and trust your journey.
  • Always believe that something wonderful is about to happen.
  • “When God blesses you financially, don’t raise your standard of living. Raise your standard of giving.” – Mark Batters