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4 Apr 2012

Carry on Longchamp

Seriously, I don't know why I don't just buy one of these Longchamp bags. I seem to be always 'wishing' I had bought one.

First I let this Jeremy Scott credit card pliage bag slip by.


Then this very appropriate Jeremy Scott 'Greetings from Paradise' tote ...
Hmmm, I'm starting to see a Jeremy Scott theme here. 

Anyway, as both of these bags are long gone and consigned to the 'I wish' pile, my attention has been drawn to this Mary Katranzou 'Lantern' print tote

Wouldn't it just make a great holiday bag? I think so. 

*Images via Selfridges. 
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8 Jan 2012

Aren't They Handsome?

In just a few days I will be in the Philppines [insert excited fit here]. The main reason I'm going is to see my family and celebrate my granny dearest 90th birthday, but whilst I'm there I plan to take in some sights, visit a beach, and y'know all the usual holiday things you do.

I'm also doubly excited as not only has it been about 4 years since I last visited, it will be Mr. B's first time in the Philippines.

Anyway, my thoughts have turned back to packing for this trip and after seeing this We Are Handsome instagram photo, I started to think about swimwear...


I own one swimsuit and a couple of bikinis. However, I've never been a fan of bikinis, mainly because I just don't feel confident in them. It's just a lot of flesh on show for me. Really, do people need to see my belly button? So I have fully embraced the swimsuit. Problem is I need more.

That's where Australian brand We Are Handsome come in with their inspired printed swimwear - animals, underwater divers, galaxies, or '50s retro photos have all become covetable We Are Handsome swimwear.

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3 Jan 2012

Philippines via. St. Tropez

After the torrential rainstorm that just passed over London, I cannot wait to see some sunshine.

Fortunately that won't be long now as next week I'll be heading for the Philippines. Excited at this point would seem like an understatement.

So of course my thoughts have turned to what to wear, what toiletries to bring etc.

As I make my virtual shopping list of 'essentials' that I must have for this trip, a couple of items that are screaming "TAKE ME" are these Wildfox Couture tees from ASOS...

Wildfox St Tropez T Dress
Wildfox Jet Set Inside Out Tee
Obviously I neeeeed these tees. If I don't have them, how will my fellow travellers know that I'm part of the jet-set? It's all very self-explanatory.
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30 Nov 2011

Champagne Pow Pow


This weekend my friend is leaving us and heading to the hills (well technically The Alps) to embark on an adventure as a chalet host for a ski season. An avid skier and all round outdoorsy person, I can't actually believe she hasn't done this sooner.

Usually I do get a bit jealous when anyone I know heads away on holiday, except for ski-type holidays as I'm just not into them. The potential for bones getting broken is too high. I do however love the thought of the apres-ski - roaring fires, hot chocolate, alcohol and food - or so I've been led to believe.

However the launch of Ashish's ski range for Topshop puts a tick in the pro-skiing box. I love a pun, so these oversize sweatshirts and hoodies emblazoned with a play on ski words suits me down to the ground. I'm also partial to a little bit of leopard print, so another plus.

View the full collection online at Topshop.com



Also for those of you wondering what 'Champagne Pow Pow' is, apparently it is "Very dry snow, which is often so light it can't be made into a snowball". Who knew eh?

*all images via Topshop.com
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1 Oct 2011

Tuck Me In

If you're going to fly First Class and have the luxury of full flat beds, designer sleep suits and toiletries;  you might as well go that extra (air) mile in the name of luxe.

You may be provided with duvets and pillows, but how about you bring along your own silk quilt? Too much? Nah, I don't think so.

Imagine snuggling down in your flat bed 35,000ft in the air with a Swash Jangala ivory silk crepe de chine quilt. Lovely. Definitely a far cry from the static charged fleece blankets you find in economy, and prettier too.

Look, it even comes with leather harness for easy carrying. Smart. 

Images via: Net-A-Porter

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21 Nov 2010

A Taste of New York

My travel timeline has gone out of the window.  I had some other trips to write about but I just haven't gotten round to writing them up. Oops. Anyway, as this post is about food, it shot up my priority list.

Anyway, so back at the beginning of October my brother and I took my mum off to NYC for her 60th birthday. She'd never been before and we thought it would be fun to take her. Aren't we lovely children?

As well as taking in all the usual sights and tourist attractions - Empire State, Central Park, Rockerfeller Center, Brooklyn Bridge etc. We also took in the tastes that NYC had to offer. Here's a quick rundown of what we ate:

SHAKE SHACK
This was in fact our first meal in NYC and our first time at Shake Shack. Touted as one of the best burgers in NYC, if not the best. There are a few locations around the city, but we went to the one in Madison Square Park - the first Shake Shack - where the queue often wraps around the park.

What's so good about Shake Shack? Well let me tell you - it was one tasty burger! Ok, it wasn't mind-blowing but the gruyere stuffed portobello mushroom that sat atop the burger patty (Shake Stack burger) definitely made it something that I would want to eat again. If you like cheese - as there is a lot of cheese on this thing - you'll like this burger. The crinkle cut fries were also yum - golden brown, crunchy on the outside and fluffy on the inside.

If burgers are not your thing, they also did hotdogs and some sort of frozen custard dessert. Also, if you're in a hurry you could head to the 'B' queue to pick up drinks and desserts without having to wait in line behind all the carnivores.

Probably pricier than you're average fast food burger joint, but it's better than you're average fast food burger joint.

Read more about other NYC Eateries...

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29 Sep 2010

The LOST Island

If you were an avid Lost fan, you're probably still in mourning at the show's end. I know I am. I have a Lost shaped hole in my life and I don't know what to do, hence, this indulgent post about one of my favourite TV programmes.  Don't worry it's travel and holiday related, I promise.


Without a doubt the island was one of the stars of the show, and the amazing scenery was provided by the Hawaiian island of O'ahu. Some scenes were filmed on a sound stage, but the rest was filmed on location - which means if you are a fan of the show and are ever in O'ahu you can go and see where Oceanic Flight 815 crashed along with other memorable locations!

The Crash Site
Jack: Where are we?
Mokule'ia Beach on Oahu's North Shore (Image By: Ali San)
Hurley's Golf Course
Ka'a'awa Valley (Image by: Tobze)
Want to see more?

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10 Sep 2010

The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas

I'll say it loud, I'll say it proud - I ♥ Las Vegas!

Some people may think it's tacky, but not me. I plan to be a polyester clad, Hawaiian print, sun visor wearing, slot machine playing granny enjoying my free cocktails.  Mr.B may have other ideas though.

I've been a few times already and have stayed at the Monte Carlo, Planet Hollywood formerly the Aladdin, and MGM Grand.

My last visit though was back in 2006 for Mr.B's birthday, and since then there has been a whole crop of new hotels that have popped up along the strip just waiting for me to come and stay  - or so I would like to think.

In fact, opening later on this year on December 15 is The Cosmopolitan Hotel of Las Vegas and based on these pictures, I wouldn't say no to staying here.


So, anyone up for a trip to Vegas then?

Photo Credit: All images taken from The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas
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6 Sep 2010

Hotel Les Pasteliers - Albi, France

Ok so it's time to back-track back to July when Mr. B and I went to Albi in  France for a friend's wedding.

It's better late than never I suppose to let you know about the hotel that we stayed at and our French adventure. 

So where to start?...  I had never even heard of Albi until the invitation for this wedding came through and really didn't know what to expect as my experience of France has pretty much been limited to Paris.

As part of the adventure for this trip - we decided to travel to Albi by train. It was fun but tiring, but I would still recommend doing a train trip across Europe - even if you only do it once. It's worth it just for the scenery.

After a long day travelling we finally arrived at our hotel - Hotel Les Pasteliers
We arrived late at night and this late check-in was accommodated by the hotel. It seemed to be at the end of a dimly lit street, but don't let that put you off as the hotel is in fact lovely and charming and the owners very friendly.
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28 May 2010

iPad iPad iPad - Possibly the Best Holiday Accessory!

You may have read or heard all the buzz about the iPad - Apple's newest magical gadget. If you haven't, where have you been?

Well tomorrow (Friday 28th May) is iPad day or as I have decided to call it - FriPad day. I don't think it will catch on though. Anyway,  the Apple Store on Regents Street in London will be opening at 8am to welcome all those who want to get their hands on the new device. 

My friend pre-ordered one, and the surprise of the day was that her iPad arrived at work TODAY! A day earlier than expected!   It was amazing, as silence descended on our department as she opened the mystical box. Needless to say I am a little (read as a lot) jealous.

Oh well, if like me you won't be owning an iPad anytime soon, you could always play with one in an Apple Store along with the rest of the masses, or go for the much nicer option of booking a stay at The Berkeley Hotel.

The Berkeley Hotel is currently offering the use of an iPad when staying in either their Berkeley Suite, Conservatory Suite, or the Chelsea Suite. The iPad available for use will be loaded with lots of applications that the concierge team feel would be useful for you during your stay. Not a bad idea right?



What's the catch you may ask? Well staying in a suite at The Berkeley Hotel is not cheap, and prices can start from £1300 per night. If my maths is correct, for this price you could buy two or three iPads (depending on whether you get one with Wi-Fi/3G or not); either way it's great to see a hotel embracing new technology. 

Needless to say I want an iPad. I don't need one, but I wouldn't say no. Anyone like to give me an iPad? Mr. Jobs? 

It would be the ultimate holiday accessory providing you with mucho entertainment - watch movies, play games, read books, magazines... just imagine the possibilities. Just think, no more bulky paperbacks taking up space in your luggage leaving more room for more clothes. I say it would be win-win all round.


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Room With A View

There is nothing better than opening the curtains of your hotel room and having your breath taken away by the view. It's one of the moments that reminds you that you are on holiday.

Like everyone else, I've had my fair share of crappy views, including a brick wall, someone else's room, the car park, a porn shop, and the street corner where ladies of the night ply their trade... the list goes on.

This is why Conde Nast Traveller's - Room With A View (published by Assouline) is a book to own. It showcases 160 of the world's most stunning views - from crystal clear water white sand beaches to bright light cities -  all without you having to leave your chair!


Here are a few examples from the book to make your eyes water a little...


The best bit (apart from all the stunning pictures) is the very handy part where they tell you which room / suite you get the view from. So, if you are looking for somewhere special to stay, this would make a great resource.

Hmmm, which view to look at next?
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11 May 2010

Towel Dry

To be honest, I've only ever owned one beach towel which I bought on a trip to Sardinia a couple of years ago. It's nothing special, in fact it looks like some crazy '80s graphic - pink with lots of primary colour squiggles. Who knows why I chose that one.

Anyway, I think it might be time for an upgrade in the beach towel stakes to one of these Special Items from Marc Jacobs.


These flag towels have the country flag on one side and then a city on the other side with the addresses of where the Marc Jacobs stores are. Handy. In effect these towels are a nice bit of advertising for Mr Jacobs, but hey, they look nice - plus they are only $19 on the website, which means they can't be that much more in the London store. Bonus.
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10 May 2010

Vacation Issue

Oooh, my email newsletter from Net-A-Porter arrived into my inbox today... and lo-and-behold it was all about what to wear on holiday, so obviously I had to click through.

It took me straight to the the current edition of the Net-A-Porter online mag - The Vacation Issue

WARNING! Reading the Vacation Issue will leave you with a serious holiday craving. 
Showcasing outfits that'll be sure get your upgraded; from designers such as Alice Temperley, Diane Von Furstenberg, and Matthew Williamson, as well as a whistle-stop tour of swimwear through the years - it's  definitely worth a read.

After that you can shop all the looks they feature, or just go straight to their Vacation Boutique.
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First

Hi British Airways, may I have a return ticket to where ever your new First class cabin flies please?
Also, do you accept kidneys and left arms as payment?
No? Oh ok.

BA's new first class - now simply called First looks like a way I would like to travel.



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8 May 2010

Wish You Were Here

Whatever happened to the holiday progs of yesteryear? You know the ones, Holiday on BBC1 or Wish You Were Here  on ITV with Judith Chalmers who exposed us to the delights of the Costa Del Sol and the Algarve.

At the time when going abroad was a novelty, these holiday programmes were a must see - giving us ideas on where to go and providing us with dreams of reaching these sun drenched places.



Ol' Judith pointed out the beaches, the watering holes, places to stay and of course, what the best deal was to get you there. Her job seemed amazing - I mean who wouldn't want a job that was basically a super extended holiday? Downside - the ravaging effects of the sun are clear to see on Judith's face. Clearly sunscreen was in short supply.

Now with the internets, and travel review sites such as Trip Advisor maybe these programmes are no longer needed as you can find the information yourself, but they were fun to watch even if my parents never took me to any of the places featured on these programmes!

So if you don't remember Wish You Were Here, here are the nifty  opening credits.



FYI - Just in case you didn't know,  Judith admitted that all the time she was doing the show to avoid having VPL on tv.  Maybe, a little more holiday information than we need to know.  If you want to just read more about her favourite places and travel tips, have a read of this interview with The Independent from a few years ago.
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5 May 2010

What To Pack?

Oh no! I think I forgot my [insert relevant item here]

There will be no more of those moments - you know the ones where the panic kicks in and your brain starts racing to try and figure out how you are going to do without it, or where you can get a replacement - thanks to Knock Knock's - Pack This Pad.

So if you need a helping hand packing and making sure you don't forget anything, pick up this pad!
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26 Apr 2010

How To Make It In America

The USA sure know how to promote themselves and make you want to visit their land of excess.

You may remember this advert from a couple of years back, and I must say it worked on me. It made me want to visit America.



So now with a potential trip to the Land of the Free (NYC to be precise) coming up later on in the year, I am even more excited thanks to new HBO show How To Make It In America.  The opening credits are just soooooo coool.

If you haven't seen it, here you go...



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23 Apr 2010

Dream Destination: Amanpulo - Palawan, Philippines

I'm lucky enough that my parents are from the Philippines, an archipelago that consists of over 7000 islands, which means there is a wealth of beaches to choose from.

The thing is when we go back to the Philippines,  I only ever visit the region that my parents are from - which is Pampanga if you are interested.

So out of the 7000 islands, I have only visited one. Shame on me. As I have grown up I've realised how much of the Philippines I am missing out on.

Boracay is probably the most well known island in Philippines. Its blue skies, crystal waters, and white sands are popular both with Filipinos and tourists.

There are however other hidden gems...

Last year I learnt of Amanpulo (Aman Resorts) situated on the secluded island of Pamalican in Palawan. Let me be clear, I have NOT been here, but OMG I WANT TO! It looks like the screen savers and desktops aptly named 'paradise'  that come pre-installed on computers.

I'd already heard some amazing things about the beaches and islands in Palawan; how beautiful they are yadda yadda, so I didn't expect anything less from Amanpulo.

When I saw the brochure my heart did a little flip and I could almost feel the sun on my face. Almost.  Just look at the pictures...




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