sakura

May 6, 2017 |Comments

 

Admittedly I’ve been chasing cherry blossoms ever since I got into Tokyo, to the annoyance of my brother, so of course I made my way to Shinjuku Gyoen that has one of the most beautiful Japanese gardens in the city. Although it is a vast park with different garden sections, I only ended up finding one sakura tree in proper bloom. Better than nothing, I told myself, as I waited for all the tourists to clear before managing the above shots. Worth it though, right?

We took to Tokyo’s ‘kawaii’ capital next, and as expected the place was mighty packed on a weekend. I love people-watching around Harajuku and grabbing crepes stuffed with brownies at Takeshita Street, and get this: if you don’t ‘gram the biggest fairy floss ever from Totti Candy Factory, it didn’t happen.

spotted in tokyo

May 2, 2017 |Comments

こんにちは from the brilliant Tokyo! Here for the fourth time and of course you must know this is one of my favourite cities in the world. In a way, the city never sleeps, and neither do its neon lights and constant bustling roads that I surprisingly never tire of. Kyoto was a little out of the way this time, so we paid a visit to the Torii Gates Tunnel at Hie Shrine in Akasaka instead.

 

 

Wearing – Marc Jacobs spotted faux fur coat in bone and black with parrot brooch from Shopbop / Newsboy cap from Shibuya 101 – shop similar Eugenia Kim elyse hat in champagne and Brixton fiddler cap / Leather knee-high boots – shop similar Stuart Weitzman reserve tall boots and Jenni Kayne riding boots 
In truth, I’ve sat on this gorgeous faux fur coat for weeks, waiting and saving it for an ideal opportunity to sashay in around. When this spontaneous Tokyo trip came along, I knew the torii gates at Hie Shrine would provide the most perfect of backdrops, and truly it did. Throwing a quick fun fact your way: the purpose of torii gates is to divide our world and the spirit world, and are said to be influenced by other Asian cultures that have similar gate structures near holy sites. You must admit though, they do add an immense sense of wonder to the Japanese landscape.
P.S Shopbop is having a special sale on best sellers for the next 3 days! 


 

 

queenstown favourites

April 18, 2017 |Comments

Queenstown sits on the shore of the South Island’s crystal clear Lake Wakatipu, set against the dramatic Southern Alps, and is one of New Zealand’s premier holiday destinations. It is a fabulous base to explore the region’s historic mining towns and vineyards, and for all you adventure seekers, a great place to go bungee jumping and skydiving (that I haven’t found the courage to do).
And since everyone was asking, I’ve rounded off my favourite spots around Queenstown, including my stay at The Spire Hotel. If you like this expansive view of Lake Wakatipu (below) as much as I do, you’ll be happy to know it is literally a few steps away from the hotel.

 

Quite frankly, my place of stay at The Spire Hotel was so luxurious yet cosy that I struggled to leave my room every morning. It comes as no surprise then, that the hotel offers award winning luxury Queenstown accommodation where genuine hospitality, serenity and style uniquely combine. With just 10 suites and a characterful cocktail bar, it’s the destination of choice for those with an eye for detail and an appreciation of stellar service. To top it off, the hotel is conveniently located within walking distance of Queenstown’s vibrant cultural scene, including shops, cafes, nightlife and four season lake and mountain resort activities.

Most of all, we had great views of the church spire that gives the hotel its name, while king-size beds, luxe linens, stone-clad fireplaces, design classics and large private balconies feature in all suites. And the service is as inviting and welcoming as the room upon arrival: already lit fireplace, free bottle of champagne and chocolates, warm rug to snuggle up with a book, and there’s even a bath so big it soaks up all my aches. Do note though, the hotel might take a bit of finding as it is up a pedestrian lane, but valet parking is included so drop it off at the nearby loading zone and let reception know (they will grab your luggages and park the car for you promptly).

If you want to explore thrill-seeking tours or a family day trip, The Spire Hotel will even plan it for you. In fact the general manager, James, tried hard to push for a helicopter ride during our stay except the weather was almost unforgiving, but an organised lunch at The Grille by Eichardt’s made up for it. Serving sincerely memorable experiences mere footsteps from The Spire Hotel and the shores of Lake Wakatipu, this outstanding dining hub warmly welcomes both locals and visitors alike, where home-grown, free-range, and locally sourced produce is at the forefront of an authentic dining experience in Queenstown’s premier lakefront restaurant.

Pictured above: Seasonal bluff oysters, homemade parpadelle with special-of-the-day prawns and Eichardt’s wagyu cheeseburger. 

 

The lookout from Bennett’s Bluff (above) is one to catch at sunrise, as we did, but bring lots of warm layers as it can get quite chilly at six in the morning. How to: less than half hour drive from The Spire Hotel.

The highest highway in New Zealand, the Crown Range Road connects Wanaka and Queenstown. As above, the view from Crown Range summit lookout is one not to be missed. These were taken during sunset and we were lucky enough to catch a dreamy stream of light in a passing moment. How to: less than half hour drive from The Spire Hotel.

 

We rode up Skyline Queenstown Gondola, the steepest cable car lift in the Southern Hemisphere, to the top of Bob’s Peak – a must-do in Queenstown. Marvel at the incredible view (above) from 450 metres above Queenstown and Lake Wakatipu. How to: less than ten minutes walk from The Spire Hotel.
Lastly, Coronet Peak (below) may be well received during winter months when snow activities are available, but the view during autumn isn’t much to complain about too. How to: less than half hour drive from The Spire Hotel.

 

 

'