Oh Paris, you do bore me to death sometimes. What can you offer me in return besides great luxury hotels, mouthwatering hot chocolate and sugar-high macarons, Colette, nitty-gritty street corners and the oh mighty Sephora?
An annual trip to Paris feels like taking a trip to the enclosed estate with the same sort of common scenery. B-o-r-i-n-g. I do admire its traditional, romanticism architecture in Paris but having been spending more time in fast paced city in Hong Kong, I was used to seeing its incredible skyline’s contemporary and innovative buildings, you barely see fluffy white clouds between the gaps of neighbouring buildings, shapes and forms that tells a story of its own and the inspiration behind it all. My recent visits to Singapore and Doha were incredibly breathtaking, if you’re a fan of contemporary architecture I highly recommend visit all three cities.
A brief trip to Fondation Louis Vuitton with The Peninsula & co somewhere in Paris, started in 2006, an art museum and cultural centre designed by Frank Gehry. In awe of it’s in-depth construction from wall to wall, floor to ceiling, it’s like a giant ship shaped almost like a mutant bug with beautiful intricate scales. To see the structure from afar, it could easily be an exquisite bejewelled pendant. Or an ark from outer space.
Imagine you’re staying at a 5 star luxury hotel in Paris and you’ve been treated like a one of a kind smoked salmon canapé topped with premium caviar and 24 carat edible gold leaf, paired with Russian Bellini. Sounds ravishing, a bit snooty but rarely experienced in London. I’m not the type of person who require special treatment, I prefer the ‘treat me like a friend’ vibe. After all I’m after the first class experience.
Back in early spring this year, us, friendly press-ladies* arrived in style at The Peninsula Paris via Eurostar from London, shame that I was dressed in the certain style (unprepared for the hotel arrival outfit) that did not bode well with the exquisite entrance, ripped boyfriends jeans, chunky boots, loose shirt and thick leather jacket. Totes Brit’n’grunge style, yo! The grand entrance in the lobby speaks for itself, understated, the epic centre of activity, designed for arrival in style. The stunning belle epoque restaurant The Lobby located next to the hotel reception reminds me closer to home. The Peninsula Hong Kong. It’s the oldest luxury hotel in Hong Kong (and the founding hotel group which operates ten hotels across Asia, Europe and the United States), it’s well worth a visit.
A spot of afternoon lunch at the aviation-theme restaurant L’Oiseau Blanc on top floor of the hotel, (see image slide above) with spectacular views looking across Paris from the roof top terrace and restaurant. How are you doing, Paris?
I’ve been involved in making and eating eclairs in the past year, from baking everything from scratch (the dough, filling and topping) with Le Meridien in Monaco last winter, I pretty much ate every single flavours of eclairs at Angelina cafe in Hong Kong, to customising eclairs toppings with Le Meridien in London Piccadilly last week. I have sweet tooth. I’m allowed.
One late morning I was invited to sample a new Savoy‘s signature; eclairs, at the newly opened Melba at The Savoy in Strand. Formerly a currency exchange premise now it was transformed into a gourmet take-away counter, incorporating quintessentially British design with hand-carved espresso-black woodwork interiors, rich black and white marble flooring, grey Italian marble counter tops and chrome accessories, with accents of the Art Deco era and Edwardian period. Melba offer a selection of pastries, British classic sandwiches and hot and cold beverages to take away, all menu is created by executive pastry chef, Ludwig Hely.
What a treat it was to travel in a convoy by 4×4 along with 200 European journalists, bloggers, travel agencies, guides and Moroccan security officials across the dry lifeless planet Mars. It was like watching a live action 3D movie from one of the iconic scenes in Lawrence of Arabia or Black Hawk Down, I mean what a treat, but we did not drive to the dunes just bumps.
My previous trips to Morocco has brought me new-found experiences and insights of Berbers and Moroccan cultures. It’s not all about the hustle and bustle, and maze-like souks in Marrakech, the quiet seaside resort town in Essaouira, nor the beautiful decorative riads. It’s about the cultural experience, explore the unexplored you’d be amazed to find something unique and take the memorable experience with you back home. Having visited Marrakech, Essaouira, Rabat and Casablanca with Morocco Tourist Board in the previous year and before, I was thirsty for more and hungry for more. And there you ago again my third trip to Morocco! This time in Dakhla.
A quickie note.
I just wanted to share with you this little Instagram project I did with Pärla for their #LOVEparla campaign on Valentine’s Day this year, it sort of got lost in the IG feed and I wanted to revive it on the blog. If you haven’t heard of Pärla, it’s about time you do. Pärla is an independent jewellery boutique founded and curated by Erin O’Connor (not the 6 foot tall super model of course), it stocks contemporary designer jewellery, British and Scandinavian design from Bjorg, Smith/Grey, Clarice Price Thomas, Jessie Harris, COOEE, and my favourite designer V Jewellery. I’ve been a fan of V Jewellery for a year, thanks to the email introduction from my sister Isabella (Rockin’ That Gem) who has just moved to Perth with her future hubby last year. For the #LOVEparla project, obviously I was going to pick a piece by V Jewellery that reflects my personality and my love for Art Deco and modern design, I chose a Simplicity Cut Ring. I’m sorry to say the ring is out of stock, but please don’t fret, the ring is available on V Jewellery’s very own e-shop!
Happy June the 1st!
My oh my. Singapore has changed so much since I last visited the city exactly 10 years ago! I don’t remember the experience as a first time visitor, I joined a tour group with a bunch of old and young folks of all ages from Hong Kong for a 4 day trip to Singapore and Malaysia, like all other tour agencies from Asia, the tour was frantic, tiresome and half of the itinerary were just pointless visits. And it was the city that gave me my first freckles. Tah Singapore!
Currently in a zombie state of mind, fighting hard to stay awake while typing this short note, and keeping an eye on my chicken & mushroom pie being heated in an oven, oh jet lag you are so kind to me! I know it is a year late, this image was taken in late spring last year, unpublished for whatever reason there is a set of image now published on ELLE HK blog, go and have a look!
My wardrobe: Top and jeans from ASOS, NY cap from Urban Oufitters.