San Francisco – Oct 30 2014


EuroCircle is co-hosting Trendy Halloween “Dracula’s Wedding” with TrendyLime

Who says you can’t be chic and spooky at the same time?
On Thursday, October 30, you are cordially invited to join us for Dracula’s Wedding and step into the haunting splendor of medieval Temple.

1. Stylish event with 500 trendsetters at the beautifully remodeled TEMPLE
2. FASHION “Loved to Death” by award-winning designer Josh Charles.
3. “Dracula’s Wedding” experience: which one of the 12 brides will Dracula choose?
4. Costume contest with prizes
5. Performance by Silicon Valley’s own “Rainbow Party” comprised of VCs and tech executives
6. Line up of 3 hot DJs
7. Photo-booth with one of most demanded photographers Tim Williamson
8. FUNdraiser for Larkin Street


Complimentary tasting: Xi Acai between 8:30-9:30!

• DigiTall (FR/BAK)
• Mr Kiss (FR/BAK)

FUNDRAISER for Larkin Street. Have fun, Do Good

Take risks, be bold, and express your inner self in an outrageously beautiful costume. If you don’t have a costume – no problem, our photo-booth is fully equipped with spook-tacular props

Costume suggestion: “Dracula’s Wedding” style – gowns for ladies, Dracula costume for gents

WHERE & WHEN: Temple Lounge, 540 Howard Str. @ 1st Str, San Francisco. October 30, 8:30 pm – 1 am

TICKETS: $15-$120 at

SOLZ: ( Winner of 2012 “Designer of the Year” in the San Francisco Fashion Awards, SOLZ is dedicated to creating functional shoes and accessories for active lifestyles.

LARKIN STREET ( provides youth between the ages of 12 and 24 with the help they need to rebuild their lives: they give them a place where they can feel safe; rebuild their sense of self-respect, trust, and hope; learn school, life and job skills; and find the confidence to build a future. With 25 comprehensive youth service programs located throughout San Francisco in over 14 sites, Larkin Street Youth Services is now an internationally recognized model successfully integrating housing, education, employment, and health services to get homeless and at-risk kids off the streets.


~Let your Halloween bring you both tricks and treats at the ultra chic Trendy Halloween!~

Trendy Lime
project SHINE
Delirium Nights
Legally Vogue
Sassy Six

San Francisco & Silicon Valley – Nov 4 2014

EUROCIRCLE PRESENTS: Family-Friendly Event Series Kick-Off
Tuesday, November  4 2014 3.00 pm to 5:00 pm
3275 Stevens Creek Blvd.
San Jose, CA 95117

Due to popular demand, we are launching ‘family friendly’ events for our members with families.
We will kick things off with a cooking class for kids age 4-8 – a trip to Turkey! Cost $50 per family (covers the cooking kit kids receive, and pay for ingredients, and teachers’ time etc. )

Yeganeh Bakery:

Email with any questions:  (Layla Sabourian is the organizer of this event)

Layla Sabourian, has launched Chef Koochooloo, an educational service that teaches children about math, science, geography and social responsibility through cooking! Live classes are currently offered in the SF Bay Area.

For more info visit the page


Her blog ‪#‎education‬

Austin – Sep 26 2014

Emma has organized an evening for us at House Wine, her favorite gem in Austin.
They have great wine, chocolate and cheese – and offer us $5 glasses of wine, $18 bottles and $2 off cheese plates all night.

The food menu is simple, they offer cheese plates, Mediterranean plates, mmmpanadas, salmon, olives and desserts. The beers are mainly local with a few added Belgium-style brews and ciders. The setting is at once contemporary and extremely comfortable.

AND – as always, invite a few new Europeans to join!

Hosted by Emma Cartmell (Hochman) & EuroCircle Austin Team

About House Wine:

Their delicious and intriguing wines are thoughtfully chosen from vineyards all over the world! Their wine selection is constantly changing. The food menu is simple, they offer cheese plates, Mediterranean plates, mmmpanadas, salmon, olives and desserts. The beers are mainly local with a few added Belgium-style brews and ciders. The setting is at once contemporary and extremely comfortable. House Wine plays proud host to local charity events, and local artists’ works. They provide a place for local musicians to entertain which keeps Austin’s proud tradition of great local music thriving.

Kambiz Shabankare – Journalist, Photographer & Documentary Movie Maker

Please introduce yourself.

My documented name is Alireza Shabankareh Bandari, but the name that most people know me by that is Kambiz Shabankare. I was born in Iran/ Tehran 1973. My my mom’s parents were refugees from Russia after Second World War. My grandma has been telling me stories about the difficulties they had faced under communist/Stalinist admiration in Russia, plus not being welcomed in a country, Iran, that they tried to seek safety in there.
I studied Mechanical Engineering (1995) and Theater (2007) in Iran. My career as a journalist began in 1996 in a literary magazine. I switched to social issues and politics in 2000.
I started my work as a photographer in 1987 in a small photo studio and meantime acting in theater. All of these led me to huge change in my life. In 1997 I received my first offer to work in a TV show as casting manager, writer and actor. This became an open door to the film industry. In 2000 I started to switch from a portrait and landscape photographer to photojournalist, which all these changes together, made me papered for my future career as a documentary filmmaker and cinematographer. My first feature film was 2005’s, Tehran 25 O’clock that, because of its sensitive subject, was banned by Iranian national TV and all copies and footage were collected by law enforcement. And this was beginning of future bans on my movies, poems and short stories.
My first arrest happened in 1999 during the student protest in Tehran.

When and why did you move to the USA/left your country?

I left my country in late 2008 after the presidential election in 2009. The pressure on journalists, filmmakers, and activists became intolerable. Especially for those, who like me, had been imprisoned before. I had no safe place to stay. Spending few days in a friend’s house and then in other friend’s house, and finally there was nowhere to hide so I used the opportunity to travel from one city to another, to remain safe and also having the chance to talk to people and make them aware of the country’s situation. Through my words I became a mobile newspaper, and I became the subject of life a documentary without being able to film it.
My family was scared and exhausted by my situation, and I had no chance but going to prison or leaving the country, so my friends and family convinced me to the second one.
I went to Tajikistan, after few months it became dangerous for me, due to the relationship between Iran and Tajikistan, and then I left to Emirates, Jordan, and India. Some human rights and journalist protection organizations like CPJ advised me that Turkey will be a better option because they actually could help me better if I would move there.
I spent less than two years in there, and then UNHCR sent me to the United States in August 2011.

What do you enjoy most about the USA/Austin, now when you have more experience, how’s the quality of life compared to other US cities or Turkey/Iran?

People have different opinions about the cities this doesn’t make any city best or worst; it’s just based on different opinions. Austin is a nice city and not very crowded. But for me is not exactly the city that I can imagine myself in. I am coming from cold and rainy weather, so the hit in Texas makes it hard to adapt myself. Also difficulty of traveling in the United Sates especially, by public bus is another problem I have been dealing with. I love using public transportation for daily purpose, and also taking bus to go from one city to another. I have been doing this most of my life but here, in U.S, everybody has a car, so people fly from one town to another, and people don’t have much time to sit down and talk. These are kind of values that I used to have in my life.
But overall, Austin compares with many southern cities in the United States is much better, for someone like me. It is more liberal and less expensive to live.

Americans are very proud to say they are the most democratic country in the world – you have lived in countries like Iran and Turkey which at this point are probably both (Turkey much less) somewhat scary and mostly very unknown countries to most Americans. Do you feel comfortable telling us what are the best/worst issues as far as democracy and human rights go in all these 3 countries are in your view and from your perspective?

America is not much different than Iran or Turkey or other countries that they use democracy as tool for propaganda. Racism, domestic violence, gender discrimination, and etc. are the facts that exist in this country, plus this country is greatest consumer of child/sex trafficking and organ trafficking.
American government supports terrorism as much as Iran or Russia does. The meaning of freedom in this country has been twisted by government as much as in Iran, Turkey, China, and Russia. If I want to be honest, this country is a dictatorship – not a democratic country, dictatorship of corporations, parties, and in some case white males.
As a non-white person you can see discrimination and racism in some aspect. I have had this experience. Searching my luggage at the gate under the claim of random search while the airplane had 200 passengers and that random search only applied to me, or even couple of times that I tried online dating. When the girls understood I am from Middle East, it was a huge turn off for them. It doesn’t feel good.
I am a journalist, so I pay attention to people’s behavior. If you try to see, you will find many attitudes that can be interpreted as racism or discrimination. But one of the reasona that people ignore it, is because, unfortunately some Americans, have wrong definition about racism. They think calling an Iranian, or Afghan, an Arab has nothing to do with racism or discrimination. They feel telling you that “bring me some Iranian girls” is not offensive, but it is.
I respect my Arab friends but the fact is I am not Arab – just as much as they are not Iranians. We are different nations with some similarities but many differences.

How do feel about ISIS and their success having seen their beheading videos – ultimate social media usage – in TV?

I don’t appreciate any kind of violation of human rights. Any kind of genocide or violence is something that I was fighting against my entire life. I lost my country and my family because of that and nothing stops me from speaking out when it comes to human rights.
But we need to be smart; ISIS, Al-Qaida, or other terrorist groups couldn’t exist without support from world powers. People in the world suffer from lack of humanity in governments like Russia, United States, Iran, China and etc. they play people, they destroy life for mere economic or political benefits.
We need to ask where ISIS got its weapons. The first and greatest financial support for ISIS came from Saudi Arabia, and isn’t Saudi Arabia America’s ally? All, the weapons Saudi Arabia has, are made in USA. So let’s not to blame Iraqis or Muslims for what is happening right now in the Middle East.
People in many countries have been victim of tyranny by other countries like those I mentioned. What is happening in Iraq and Syria is just a conflict between Iran, Russia and USA and none of the try to be there for the benefit of people.

You have suffered for being outspoken, been imprisoned for your opinions? I think for most people you meet in Austin cannot imagine being unable to disagree with someone without endangering yourself. Why did you do it and how did you get the courage to do that? I always feel ridiculous when people say well I would never have obeyed Hitler. Very easy to say but maybe not as easy to do when you know the result may be death, torture or prison. I rather would say I hope I’d find a way to resist and survive in one piece – mentally and physically?

I can tell you in one word – responsibility. I believe, we as humans are responsible for each other and for the society. I believe a human being never can be in peace while another human being is suffering. If my neighbor suffers, I am responsible. Remaining silent doesn’t make me better that someone who makes others suffer. And taking this responsibility has consequences that we pay to have better society.
You won’t believe if I say I didn’t feel pain when they were torturing me in prison, because I had the picture of a child who lives in a great society in my mind.
I remember when I was a kid, my oldest aunt (my mom’s sister) once told me “Gandhi was not special, neither was Malcolm X- anybody can be Gandhi or Malcolm X, he just needs to love people and value the comfort of the entire world over your temporary personal desire.”
My aunt was imprisoned and tortured several times during the Shah’s administration in Iran. I understood what she said, I believed it, I lived it and I try to teach it to others.

What do you think the most American Muslims feel about the current situation in the Middle East? (Syria, Iraq, Iran, Turkey, Egypt, Libya, and Africa)

As you know I am not Muslim. However, I have many Muslim friends and colleagues who don’t appreciate fundamentalism, as much as they don’t appreciate the American or Iranian Diplomacy toward the region as well. USA accuses Muslims, all Muslims of being terrorists. Just watch all the movies that have been made especially in recent years, and Iran is using the religion as a tool for its own purpose which has nothing to do with peace in the region. Muslim people are peaceful as much as people in other religions, the problem is not people. Problem is government and their propaganda and the media in many countries.

Do you feel Austin is a good place for you as a creative freelancer right now? Are there any areas expats like you might like in the USA in your opinion better than Austin (entrepreneurs/startups)? WHY?

Austin is a nice city; I have met some great people here, but it is not an ideal place for someone like me. Austin wants someone who can shut up and live his/her life. I can’t do that. There are two aspects that make it impossible for me to be a part of this city or any cities in the United States: capitalism and individualism. I can’t imagine myself feeling comfortable while the personal desire goes above the value of a society. We live together, humans built the societies together and I am responsible for other human being.

How would you rate the public transport? What are the different options? Do you need to own a car?

I can say it’s really bad. It’s totally unreliable and so expensive. Anybody who has lived in other countries, especially Europe, can see the difference. I heard that the condition of public transportation is bad, because they try to make the giant car companies happy. I don’t know it is true or not, although makes total sense, but if it is true, it’s a shame.
For three years, I tried to not to have a car but it was impossible to do my job, so I have finally surrendered and bought one. It’s like the society forces you to do that.

Do you go out a lot – hobbies? Or is everything about work right now?

No, unfortunately I don’t go out much, first because I don’t have much time, and second, I didn’t have much good experience with people in this town. Some attitudes made me uncomfortable and I decided to not to experience those attitudes any more.

What’s the cost of living compared to other cities you are familiar with? What is cheap or expensive in particular?

Austin compared to many cities in the United States is much cheaper but still cost of living compare to some other countries , especially Europe, is high.

What are the locals like; do you feel you mix mainly with other expats?

I tried but some expats I met have been Americanized. Some deny the quality of life in their country. Call me oldfashioned, but I believe in roots. I am a proud of my Iranian background, and I have Russian “roots” as well.I believe those made me who I am. I cannot say that every single person is like that, there some people that still believe in the value of the countries that they are coming from, despite all the difficulties in those countries, so I was able to make some friends.

Did you think it is easy meeting people/other startups and making friends in Austin?

Yes it is easy and this is one of the great things about Austin.

What’s the economic climate like in Austin, how would you compare it to the other cities you know of? Why? How does the work culture/life style differ from other countries you have lived in?

As I said earlier, compared to some other cities in the United States, Austin is much better. However, your success is still measured by the money you make. I believe that’s nonsense. This is a capitalistic culture. According to this measure, Van Gogh was not successful at all.

Did you have any misconceptions about the USA or Texas that have turned out to be super wrong….or vice versa, you thought something will be great and it is exactly the other way around?

Before coming to USA I had a good knowledge of the country – I was almost right on target.

Do you think your career (business) would be the same in Iran/Turkey – or does this work better for you? Either way, please explain more.

I could be more successful in almost any country, than I am trying to be in US. The problem is here the culture doesn’t appreciate the experience you have in the past. It means you have to start from where you have started years ago, which is frustrating. The hiring system also is wrong. Getting hired most of the time has nothing to do with your expertise. It’s important how you can “sell” yourself through the interview process. In some cases, a liar who speaks better, has a greater chance than someone who actually knows how to do the job.Perception mean more than reality!

What are your favorite restaurants/bars in Austin – why ? If you know of any great Turkish/Iranian restaurant we would love to know as I love Turkish food.

There are some places that I love. The first is The Russian House. I like its design, it’s almost look like the house I grew up in (furniture, Russian Dolls, Samovar and etc.). I have to mention their food that tastes like my mom’s. Being there is like being at home.
Then Is Intercontinental Stephen F. bar and restaurant, which is a place to have a great time – food and environment and design is wonderful. I love Mozart Café, Café Medici, and Aviary Décor. All of them are great places to have a coffee as well good for a conversation or reading a book.

Is there any advice you would like to offer new expat arrivals or contemplating a move to Austin – especially for a startup/entrepreneurs/freelancers??

Not really, just keep up a great job, never give up and value honesty, and yourself as a human being, share love and try to not to judge anybody.

Is there anyone/group that you would like to connect within the European community – who would they/it be?

I love art, classical music, literature, philosophy and serious conversation over politics so any groups that provide these opportunities are my deep interests.

Connect with Kambiz:

Kambiz at Facebook
Kambiz at LinkedIn


Jess Yliniemi from Minnesota, USA Runs A Healthcare StartUp TestPlus in Finland

Jess, could you tell us a short story of your life i.e where are you from, what’s your educational background, what do you do now and where?

I was born and raised in Minnesota to Finnish and Norwegian descendents. My Great Grandfather was born in Muonio and my mother’s parents are from Oulu. One grandmother is from Tromso. I traveled most of the USA as a Construction Manager building High Rises and Hotels and then wanted to rediscover my roots so applied and was accepted to the International Business program at Haaga Helia in Helsinki and have now graduated and started a Healthcare company named TestPlus.

What do you enjoy most about Finland compared to the USA, now when you have more experience living there, how’s the quality of life compared to USA or other countries/places where you may have worked/lived?

Finland is very clean. The transportation system is very efficient and convenient. People live a high quality of life.

Usually there are some negatives, what are the ones for Finland that really stand out for you personally? What do you miss most about USA?

I miss my friends and family in the USA and around the globe but Skype has been helpful.

Do you feel Finland is a good place for you as an entrepreneur/startups right now? Are there any countries expats like you might like better in your opinion such as USA or some other European countries (entrepreneurs? WHY?)

Finland is an interesting place for Startups. The location globally is excellent.

Do you go out a lot – hobbies? Or is everything about work/study right now?

It has been mostly work. Founding a startup seems 24/7. I have made time for fishing and meeting friends.

What’s the economic climate like in Finland, how would you compare it to USA – especially for a start-up? Why?

Finland uses a different approach to economics. One example is that scholarships are awarded at graduation instead of prior to starting school. The Government programs have the same approach and reimburse costs. This makes it easier for bigger companies and more difficult for Startups.

How does the work/study culture differ from USA? (any aspect like clothing, customs, women, manners, food, alcohol, hygiene, schools, work etc)

There isn’t a lot of variety regarding purchaces. Most places have only a few options for clothing styles, food and drinks but I have noticed more “flair” since moving here

Do you think your career/studies would be the same in the USA – or does this work better for you? Either way, please explain more.

Starting a business here has worked out well so far as TestPlus is a part of the GE Healthcare Innovation Village in Helsinki.

Is there any other advice you would like to offer new expat startups arrivals at Helsinki area? What helped you – or who helped you?? Are there any resources you would like everyone to know?

Be passionate about your business and product. There will be naysayers no matter where in the world a business is started, but if you truly believe in your product/service it can happen. This helps form the direction of a company

Tell us more about your startup – where do you want to take it?? Who are the users?? What are/were the main obstacles and what surprised you and what not?? Anything you wish to change in the Finland startup scene or venture capital/angel networks?

TestPlus is developing home health testing. Our vision is to be a global leader in providing high quality accurate products and services that are beneficial to everyone and anyone in the world.

Are you willing to help other expat owned startups even with a little advice now and then – sometimes the 30 min means more to someone one can ever imagine?

I am open to discuss and can be found on LinkedIn.

New York – Sep 23 2014

Join us for our fall kick-off party and our upcoming trip to India at this Midtown Rooftop Hotspot.

There is no cover when you say EuroCircle at the door and make sure to say EuroCircle at the bar and with the waitress for drink specials

Dress: Bollywood chic! The best Bollywood inspired outfit wins a prize!

This party marks the start of fall, so let’s start the season in style, with some good music and a strong cocktail.
Our DJ will be spinning a mix of western and Indian Bhangra dance music, so put on your dancing shoes and party with us.

Tonight, we celebrate Eurocircle’s Fourth Annual Adventure Abroad, and the start of a new EC season. This fall, sixteen Eurocircle travelers from all across the globe, will meet in New Delhi, and embark on a tour of Incredible India. Together, we will admire its architecture, sample its cuisine, ride its elephants, and track the elusive Bengal tiger. When it’s all over, we will go home with beautiful memories and new friendships from around the world.

Featured Host: Sherry Kumar, Serbia– Here to welcome all EC travelers on yet another epic adventure, and kick of our fall party season, Sherry will be on hand to brag about the journey, and talk you into traveling with us next year.

Co-Hosts: Tonight’s co-hosts are Eurocircle’s travelers from our adventures in Turkey 2011, Peru 2012, Cambodia & Vietnam 2013, and India 2014

We look forward to seeing you all on September 23rd!


Alex and the EuroCircle New York Team

About Monarch:

Monarch opened with cocktail and light fare menu fit for the sizzling summer months in New York City. The Scandinavian-chic décor, designed by Natalia Todorova of Gwathmey, Seigal, Kaufman Architects, features an indoor lounge that radiates glamor and allures with seductive appeal, seamlessly connecting to the exterior oasis patio with sliding floor to ceiling glass doors. Vintage bricks, white painted hand washed wood panels on the walls, teak and grey custom Terrazzo tiles, and raw iron columns evoke a feeling of a Scandinavian summer home with accents of Manhattan elegance. Black pendants designed by Tom Dixon cast gold shadows on the natural tree form bar counter top and glass lighting fixtures project down to reflect on the modern wood walls. The modern, yet unimposing deep seated upholstered sofas invite guests to relax and bask in the views of Midtown Manhattan, while floor to ceiling silk curtains frame the picturesque view of the iconic Empire State Building.

New York – Sep 11 2014

Photos © Eurocircle. For privacy reasons we ask you not to copy these to Facebook or other social networks

Join EuroCircle during fashion week 2014 for the biggest event taking place in the heart of New York City at the exclusive Highline Ballroom.

The event will be hosted by EuroCircle and international models and will include a one hour sponsored open bar from 8pm to 9pm.

Come out and join the finest of NY’s high society for an illustrious fashion show. The Gala will feature a fashion show by Redvanly, Muti Chic by Christine DeAngelo, Susan Merriam, Style Number, Moi by Yaa and handbags by Sewzanna. Post show, dance the night away to the sounds of New York top DJs Francis Mercier, Stephen Jervis and more.

*Event co-produced with Magnises Sparkology, Eurocircle, Night Up & iClubNYC

We look forward to seeing you next week!
Alexandra and the EuroCircle New York Team

Houston – Sep 10 2014

Join EuroCircle Houston and appeal to your senses with bursting culinary amalgamation of South American flavors @ LATIN BITES.

Happy Hour specials will be extended to 9:00 PM for the EuroCircle attendees so be sure to sign up.
The cuisine features a range of small plates of Peruvian and Latin delicacies by fusing tradition, passion, contemporary, ethnic, and creative tastes.

Looking forward to seeing everyone at PISCO SOUR-HOUR at Latin Bites!

Your EuroCircle Team
Venere, Mary Beth, Juliana and Shahla

Atlanta – Sep 10 2014

Please join us for September EuroCircle Meet & Mingle on Wednesday, September 10th at the PALM restaurant located in the Westin Hotel, Buckhead.

We will have validated parking as well as complimentary appetizers.
A designated area across from the entrance of the restaurant will be reserved for EuroCircle.
A wine and beer bar will be set up for our convenience, but we will also have full access to the restaurant bar…

Please get the word out to ALL members and friends who are NOT registered EuroCircle members as we have experienced some issues with the FB invites these last couple of times…or make sure they sign up as members at

See you in a couple of weeks!!!

Atlanta Eurocircle

Austin – Sept 07 2014

Photos © Eurocircle. For privacy reasons we ask you not to copy these to Facebook or other social networks

All international groups hosting the picnic invite you to enjoy an afternoon of great food and entertainment in the company of GlobalAustin volunteers and International Austin Events Calendar members.
Check Austin Parks!!

Bring a dish or your favorite food (enough to share with 8 people), chairs, and a picnic blanket.
Swimsuit if you’d like to swim (and the nominal fee for that)…

Plates, glasses, utensils, napkins and water/lemonade will be provided

Glass or styrofoam containers are strictly prohibited (environment/safety).

Entertainment provided by Come Drum For Fun

Parking: 77 parking spaces plus 3 handicap and a small overflow parking area – also a bit of parking on the street
You can also get there by bus (Lake Austin Boulevard)

The main attraction here is Deep Eddy Pool, but there is also a toddler play area, an ADA accessible ramp to the hike and bike trail, and dock onto Town Lake for fish and bird-spotting. There is a new smoker available in the park area.
The pool will be open and accessible from picnic area.
$3 for adults $2 for juniors $1 for children.

Deep Eddy Pool is a historic, man-made swimming pool in Austin, Texas, United States. Deep Eddy is the oldest swimming pool in Texas and has a bathhouse built during the Depression-era, by the Works Progress Administration. The pool began as a swimming hole in the Colorado River, became a resort in the 1920s, and is today a popular swimming pool operated by the City of Austin.

Deep Eddy began simply as a swimming hole in the Colorado River that flows through Austin. Cold springs rose from the river l.

Deep Eddy Pool is listed as a historic landmark on the National Register of Historic Places and has been the inspiration of various works of art. Texas musician, Jimmie Dale Gilmore wrote the song “Deep Eddy Blues” about the pool and the nearby bar, the Deep Eddy Cabaret.

Hosting groups include:
(others will be added as soon as we know for sure they ARE attending):
Global Austin
AIN – Austin Intercultural Network
Casa de Espana Austin