STOW-AWAY APART HOTEL | LUXURY LONDON SUSTAINABLE STAYCATION

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Eco Friendly Hotels London

Traveling to London? Need to stay central? This eco-friendly, luxury apart hotel is located just 5 minutes walk from Waterloo Station

There’s nothing more satisfying than checking into a hotel for a holiday or mini staycation as it’s been a long while since I took an actual vacation. Just last week I headed to the Stow-Away Hotel in South Bank for that well needed staycation one evening. I’ve only managed to get away rarely this year due to the current global pandemic, so welcomed the chance to just get away and make the most of this opportunity to travel. The thrill and excitement of packing a bag once more seemed very appealing to me so I decided to jump on a train to the London Eco Luxury Hotel.

THE CULTURAL DISTRICT OF SOUTHBANK 

(Gifted Press Stay) The hotel is location in London South Banks cultural district, built in 2018 on Lower Marsh Street in the dynamic cultural borough of Southwark. Southbank has seen creativity come alive from frequent fairs and witnessed historical events such as the hotels original land lot being bombed in WWII has been home to world class arts venues The Southbank Centre to BFI film theatre and National Theatre.

Eco Friendly Hotels London

Furthermore, explore the riverside walkway for a scenic stroll and discover the restaurants, bars and historic pubs beside the River Thames. Inside the property there are just 26 rooms which they have a cosy welcoming and elegant style studio apartment repurposed and recycled from shipping containers. Each space is creatively ambitious by innovative design with stylish luxury touches adopting a sustainable approach to living.

Eco Friendly Hotels London

Time for that staycation? Stay at the eco friendly studio apartments located in the heart of London’s cultural district Southbank.

The interiors reflect a private residence to support the surrounding land, environment and ecosystem in the area that deliver space efficient rooms in a stylish and eco-friendly way. Every guest room, you will discover solid classic herringbone flooring, marble tiled bathroom, walls clad with finely graded plywood, ergonomic kitchenette design, crisp fresh linens, towels, blackout blind, supersize king-size bed for ample space to sleep one way and face another way watching TV, all combined in a contemporary cream beige, light grey, dark mahogany accents.

Eco Friendly Hotels London

Eco Friendly Hotels London

eco friendly hotel london

As you enter your room you feel the vibe exudes a decadence of luxury, functionality without compromising valuable space. Let’s not forget the hotels fully equipped serviced studio apartments to complimentary luxury toiletries from Molton Brown London specifically chosen due to their large refillable and recyclable bottles. At present, its exciting to see some of the larger hotel chains now going this way to up-cycle and support sustainable efforts.

Eco Friendly Hotels London

Eco Friendly Hotels London


Eco-Luxury, Sustainable functionality without compromising valuable space


Did you know at Stow-Away they have a heat recovery system that recycles the excess heat from the air conditioning system into hot water to help reduce overall energy consumption. It’s good to know that you can sleep comfortably with the aircon on knowing the excess heat is put towards your shower in the morning too.

Eco Friendly Hotels London

I was immediately impressed upon arrival to the property with a friendly customer service team on standby and their keyless entry using a Digital App on your smartphone with ease.

I’d say the check-in process was seemingly easy to set up as your room number and booking details were issued by email before arrival and no waiting around which was ideal.

Contactless check-in upon Arrival for Peace of Mind

Eco Friendly Hotels London

Using the App just open up the key screen by holding it up to the reader on the main front entrance or hotel room door to gain secure access. I stayed in room 203 on the 2nd Floor reachable by the main set of stairs or lift access to all floors. Prices for a Maximum of 2 persons sharing in the Apartments start from £98.10 per night.

Eco Friendly Hotels London

Get keyless entry using a Digital App on your smartphone with ease.

I really loved the extremely comfy bed with ultra Hypnos mattresses – the Award winning makers of bespoke, handcrafted and sustainably-made beds & mattresses approved by the HRH the Queen. In hindsight the overall design aesthetics of the room sizes and layout during my stay were effortlessly sleek and contemporay.

Eco Friendly Hotels London

Eco Friendly Hotels London

But the main highlight of this room had to be the fully equipped kitchen for all your culinary needs as a home away from home. As this stay was personal to me to switch off and relax, I did just that by taking a rain shower and pamper myself with Molton Brown toiletries before bed in the walk in marble tiled bathroom. But, most importantly I wanted to comment how clean the apartment was especially at present where this is essential more than ever before.

I’ve never felt so re-assured with contactless check in, mask, relaxed social distancing rules in ground floor restaurant and bar ‘Unwind’ Pop Up at the Hotel to a spotless Apartment with fresh remote for Smart TV. Rest-assured a lot of careful thought has gone into implementing a solid covid action plan on their website to ensure all guest feel confident they are always protected. It’s so good to be back in hotels again whether you need to stay a for the night, a week, or longer duration, this contemporary eco hotel offers everything you could want to make your stay a pleasant one. I’ve already recommended Stow-Away Hotel to friends and family as a space to work and a space to relax for those interested in booking a Business trip to London? The eco Apartment studios are centrally located in London, which offer sufficient space to work, relax and enjoy.

Eco Friendly Hotels London

WELCOME TO MARRAKECH BEST KEPT SECRET

LUXURY BOUTIQUE ACCOMMODATION FOR ULTIMATE HOLIDAYS TO UNFORGETTABLY STYLISH WEDDINGS

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hotel marrakech

Marrakech the Red City in Morocco is the 4th largest City and home of the Koutoubia 12th Century mosque to other must see attractions the Bahia Palace and more.

 Besides tourism you will discover the countries rich cultural history and local customs where culture and cuisine can be experienced in the heart of the city.  But, don’t forget to make the Jardin Majorelle part of your day out sightseeing with beautiful botanical Garden, it’s exotic plants and majestic fountains next to the Yves Saint Laurent Museum.Definitely worth the visit if love fashion and want to find out about the fashion houses cultural significance in the city’s history. In case you’re wondering what the connection is, the association with the French Design House began when the Designer and Pierre Berge first visited the garden in 1966 upon their first stay.

THE BEST LUXURY VILLAS IN MARRAKECH

Before coming to Morocco I’ve always been intrigued by its charm, beauty and splendor, so when the chance came I stumbled upon a dear friend’s Wedding Invitation I just couldn’t turn down the opportunity for a long weekend. It was here I discovered the Dar JL Luxury Villa’s and it’s accommodations and private grounds were just breathtaking – take a moment to admire its surroundings and scenery’s. The garden is beautiful but sometimes it’s a real treat to take time out to rest inside one of the villas. Or why not a have private lunch in the Olive Garden Grove which is where my friend had her Wedding Ceremony.

hotel marrakech

 

I recall it being 37 degrees one afternoon so took a swim in one of the swimming pools which had a reflection of the olive tree in it. I’ll never forget that night of the Wedding reception the enchanting magic of the atmosphere lots of candlelight and lanterns were truly an unforgettable experience.

  hotel marrakech

 

When night falls the magic begins in Marrakech.

Inside the villas you will come across tapestry’s that adorn the walls with magnificent vibrant colour with every fine detail of the cushions local arts and crafts.We partied the night away at Dar JL Hippie Village suite with entertainment from a live DJ set and wedding band till the early hours is such a favourite place to hang out.

hotel marrakech

hotel marrakech

 

hotel marrakech

 

 

Did you know, Dar JL also boast a private pool in one of the suites to outdoor shower facilities if you’re keen on alone time. I absolutely adored the shades of green, purple and yellow and think these colours really compliment the character of the resort not forgetting the 14 acres of tropical gardens to explore.

hotel marrakech

 

hotel marrakech

 


Dar JL Villa La Tour which enables you to view the snowy Atlas Mountains in awe


Here’s a thought its day two of the Wedding, early morning swim or enjoy a hammam in their luxury wellness suites are divine. Either or, both experiences will make a well afternoon spent just for two as Dar JL has lots of secret places to explore in the garden. After a sunny day, it was time for our tea in the berber tent before getting into the evening mood.

There is so much beauty and colour around you where you will notice the yellow cactus flowers really blend into the garden too. Care for some more Mint Tea before continuing a few steps up of the Dar JL Villa La Tour which enables you to view the snowy Atlas Mountains in awe. Also, entertainment included a late night movie in open wow what an experience I tell you it was under the stars and candle light.

hotel marrakech

 

 

I think the best moment for me is that each night during you’re stay you can find a new place in the garden to have your dinner and new places to hang out in discreet hideaways amongst the tiles and arches. I do miss the outdoor picnics we had during the day after the Wedding for more celebrating of my newlywed friends.

Not forgetting delicious food is so important during your vacation the dining experiences at Dar JL are second to none. I highly recommend coming and sampling the cuisine for the ultimate dining experience

It’s another pool day ahead for Sun lounging, Sunshine and Serenity of Moroccan architecture ticks all the boxes. What else do you need…

hotel marrakech

 

With over 300 days of sun per year in Marrakech it’s easy to get here by taxi a 20 minute ride away from the city centre. If you’re keen on planning a visit The Dar JL is a luxury villa resort comprising of four villas that can be rented as a whole or individually.

hotel marrakech

The Villa Dar Limoon has four bedrooms and a living room with a large private pool.

Indulge by treating yourself making the most of you’re stay here with pools, tennis court and spa day set in 14 acres of lush tropical garden are all unforgettable experiences.Besides hanging by the pool, listening to the birds chirping and the calm on the water is the ideal way to spend the weekend at Dar JL.

Hotel Marrakech

 

Editorial Disclaimer: As always, all opinions are my own and I will never promote something I don’t personally support and believe in.  I was an invited guest to the resort by a friend and not of the Hotel. Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed or endorsed by any of these entities.

 

For more information and booking enquiries on Hotel Reservations for Dar JL Luxury Villas Marrakech please visit

DAR JL Marrakech

Arset Sdiguia Talaint

Circuit de la Palmeraie,

Marrakech 40000, Morocco

 

www.darjl.com

+212 661-210549

 

Follow along and Connect on Social Media

 

Instagram @darjlmarrakech

A STAY WITH ART HOTEL MUSEO IN TUSCANY | CULTURE & STYLE AWAITS YOU

OPERA ARTE RESTAURANT FINE DINNING & HOTEL REVIEW

So a few months back, Jenny and I were invited to spend a couple of nights at the elegant Art Hotel Museo in Tuscany and we of course jumped up the opportunity to see the Leaning Tower of Pisa on the way there. Situated in Prato province, this 4 star Tuscany hotel offers one of the best stays in the city, and has held a renowned reputation for Europe’s leading Textile Industries. We were offered one of their Classic Suites with views over The Contemporary Art Museum L. Pecci and access to their gym facilities to car hire service.

Tuscany Hotels

Let’s start with a little introduction about the hotel itself. Since it’s founding, Art Hotel Museo was born under the sign of Art both for it’s location in front of the Luigi Pecci the center of contemporary art, and has always held a very high standard or both service, and accommodation with plenty of guest facilities and food & beverage options including; close proximity to the history city allows visitors to enjoy art, design, fashion and shopping in numerous outlets.

“We offer all our guests comfortable and cosy rooms (106 rooms including 2 executive, 3 deluxe and 4 suites and our renovated Classic Plus and our Designer Rooms on 04th Floor) as well as functional spaces conceived and designed to offer complete satisfaction in a setting of total relaxation. Art Hotel Museo is not only the meeting point of reference in Prato but it is also an active and dynamic hotel in the area.”

From the Art Hotel Museo Website

Tuscany Hotels

I’ve got to say that this is one of the best hotel stay experiences we’ve had lately and the hospitality was outstanding. In fact second to none that we’d love to come back again soon. The rooms were very spacious including a separate walk in closet next door to the Bathroom with a modern contemporary feel inside the classic suite. Homely touches through out the whole hotel was so beautiful it was like an Art Gallery with a different theme on each floor. Me and Jen made good use of the Hotel Bar after a day of designer shopping Gigli Mall where we brought new outfits for Milan Fashion Week. The Hotel bar served all our Classic cocktail favourite’s from Aperol Spritz to Espresso Martini’s, fashion week here we come!

Tuscany Hotels

Fancy a sumptuous cocktail or fine glass of Tuscan wine after day of sightseeing and shopping, spot of lunch or formal dinner the hotel has something to cater to everyone with various food and drinks options at the in-house The Opera Arte Restaurant including room service in dinning menu looks delicious. You’ve got to try their ‘Traditional Italian Roman Pizza’ Pinsa Romana with it’s soft fluffy dough base mozzarella, tomato, basil my favorite here. But, don’t forget to try the fresh gelato ice cream served as a desert option is just divine the taste of mouthwatering fresh lemon after two courses.

Tuscany Hotels

Tuscany Hotels

Another delicacy you must try is the Authentic Spaghetti Bolognese made with fresh tomato sauce and wild boar mince instead of beef which we are so used to having back home so it was a real treat to try something new in Tuscany. It would be great to attempt this dish when I get back home as I’m always looking to improve my culinary skills in the kitchen and cooking is enjoyable too especially during the lock down period. I’ve taken the time to learn new skills and take up new hobbies like watching ‘YouTube’ cooking channels – looking forward to what cuisine I’ll attempt in the kitchen next.

We both really enjoyed our time here in Prato Tuscany and the staff management at Art Hotel Museo were so kind and accommodating to us it made such a real difference for our stay. This hotel is also perfect for business travelers equip with conference rooms as well as holiday makers looking for a relaxing stay on vacation.

The outdoor pool and spacious garden are ideal for a fun summer with pop up bar and the hotel is Pet friendly too.  For us, it was all about taking time to switch off from our busy itinerary of life in London before the start of Milan Fashion Week. We definitely made the most of it, so if you are after a short weekend break to take in some culture through cuisine, fine wine, dining and shopping then this would be the ideal hotel to check out what Prato has to offer.  I discovered that Prato is known as The Textile City throughout history portraying cultural significance of fashion to wine in Tuscany’s winery’s and vineyards is very intriguing for wine lovers alike.

 

Tuscany Hotels

Tuscany Hotels
Photography Jenny Pickets

 

 

Editorial Disclaimer: #AD A huge thank you to Art Hotel Museo for hosting us and for providing a wonderful, stay in Prato. As always, all opinions are my own and I will never promote something I don’t personally support and believe in, regardless of who foots the bill. Also I would like to Thank ryanair.com for sponsoring my return flights itinerary between Pisa, Milan and London during Camera Moda Milano Men’s Fashion Week and to both companies for making this trip possible.Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed or endorsed by any of these entities.

Some of the above links are affiliate links and I will earn a tiny percentage of the sale if you purchase through them at no extra cost to you. Thanks for supporting The Joey Journal!

For more information and booking enquiries on Flights to Pisa & Hotel Reservations including the Hotel Restaurant at Art Hotel Museo Prato Italy, please visit

 

ART HOTEL MUSEO

Viale della Republica 289

59100, Prato Italy

+39 0574/578888

www.arthotel-museo.it

[email protected]arthotel-museo.it

+39 0574/5787

 

OPERA ARTE & RESTAURANT

www.opera-arte.restaurant

[email protected]

+39 0574/578888

 

RYANAIR AIRLINES

www.ryanair.com

 

Follow along and Connect on Social Media

 

Instagram @art_hotel_museo

 

Instagram @ryanair #ryanairstories

 

A CITY GUIDE TO MILAN: STYLE AND CULTURE THROUGH CUISINE IN EUROPE’S LEADING FASHION CAPITAL

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MILAN

Milan City Breaks

Not forgetting AC and Inter Milan Football Clubs for all you avid sports fans out there. For those intrigued about discovering Milan, if you like Paris then you came to the right place for sought after luxury designer shopping and high end restaurants take your fancy

Ciao Milano.

The city’s historical landmarks the Gothic Duomo di Milano cathedral testify to centuries of art and culture including Leonardo da vinci’s mural ‘the last supper’ housed in the Santa Maria delle Grazie convent pays homage to the grandeur of Italian Renaissance.

THE BEST HOTELS IN MILAN

NYX HOTEL MILAN

This stylish new concept and contemporary hotel in the heart of Milan’s city centre is every fashionista’s dream as it’s very close to all the main attractions and just a stone’s throw away from the shopping Mecca of via Corso Buenos Aires and Central Station area of Eateries, bars and bustling nightlife.  Metro station access Republica, Centrale and Porto Venezia are all within walking distance from the hotel.

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THINGS TO TRY AND EXPERIENCE

Milan City Guide

DUOMO DI MILANO CATHEDRAL

The historic Landmark Duomo di Milano is one of Milan’s most treasured gems being the most grandest Cathedrals in the world that you will ever encounter with its Gothic architecture is quite impressive in all it’s all awe and beauty. I really do think it’s worth visiting and you can gain access to the inside of the building by buying a ticket pass for a couple of hours at a price of 3-4 Euro’s. Tickets can be purchased by the issuing tourist ticket office nearby which is not alot as you get to admire the art work of the cathedrals stained glass windows and visit the Crypt in the lower levels of the building. Separate passes for lift access to the roof is also available at a extra cost too for great views over the city.

Milan City Break

Milan City Break

Top image: Stain Glassed Window. This image Rooftop of Milan’s Cathedral

Milan City Break

PORTO GENOVA

Just imagine the streets aligned with an array of your favourite restaurants and bars to cater to all cuisines both local and international taste this would be where it’s at. It’s like a mini Amsterdam situated along the canal as you watch the day go by. But just remember restaurants close at 3pm and re-open at 7pm to bear this in mind compared to what you’re used to elsewhere in the world. But you must try The Apitervo bars and restaurants who offer a complimentary drink and a food buffet offered at various places along the canal and rather enjoyed taking a stroll along the canal and worth exploring day or night.

MILAN FASHION WEEK

Arriving in Milan for Men’s Fashion Week over the summer I just did not know what to expect as it was my first hand experience of visiting the city while doing a bit of sightseeing in between the shows. Already I just knew there was so much I wanted to see and experience during the next few days before returning home to London. Just out of curiosity I was so keen to compare how the Italian’s do fashion week over here in Milan compared to us Brit’s in London. It really took me by surprise how good it actually turned out – no words. Camera Moda the equivalent of the British Fashion Council organise the bi-annual Fashion Week Schedule which require accreditation for both Press and Photographer’s if you happen to get approval is a great way to take in shows and atmosphere during the duration of Milan Fashion Week. But, if you’re not one of the lucky few who can secure an invitation you can still hang around outside the shows and do some street style spotting of fashion influencers on the scene and participate as a blog photographer.

Milan City Break
Edith Marcel Spring Summer 2020 Menswear / Womenswear Show at Camera Moda #MFW

DISCOVER A TASTE OF CULTURE THROUGH CUISINE

OSTERIA MAMMA ROSA

The first thing which comes to mind when you think about living the Italian way of life is culture through cuisine and only the finest authentic food can be found at this Top Milanese Restaurant Osteria Mamma Rosa just off the trendy Corso Buenos Airies. My favourite signature dish here has to be the Sea Bass prepared the Liguria way served with potatoes’  as an alternative to the Grilled Seabass which is also delightfully sumptuous. On arrival prosecco is served before dinner as a gesture of good will and the atmosphere is very friendly and welcoming at this family run restaurant in the heart of Milan.

Milan City Break

Ligurian way Sea Bass Fillet with violet potatoes, olives, and “pinoli” pine nuts

GELATO ICECREAM

In Italy there are so much choice when it comes to desert especially the selection of Gelato Icecream you can find in various icecream palours dotted around the city such as this place I found ‘Vechi’. The mango sorbet and strawberry with a bit of chocolate was the best way to cool off during a hot summers day in the city while sight seeing in Milan.

Milan City Break
APEROL SPRITZ

The signature drink when you come to Italy had to be my favorite always the Aperol Spritz that really reminds of summer and it’s so refreshing with its blend of Aperol liqueur, Prosecco and Soda Water combination is my go to drink during Milan Fashion Week.

Milan City Break

DESIGNER FASHION LABELS & SHOPPING

Milan City Break

GALLERIA EMANUELE VITTORIO II

The Galleria Emanuele Vittorio II is Milan’s premiere shopping destination that houses all under one roof the world’s most exclusive designer label boutiques from Prada, GUCCI to Chanel and more. Inside this elegant four storey arcade you’ll find high end restaurants if you want to experience authentic Italian cuisine and luxury cafes to unwind after an afternoon of shopping. It’s also a short stroll just outside of the Duomo di Milano piazza which connects  with Teatro alla Scala if you want to admire and catch a glimpse of Milanese renaissance in all its splendor.

Milan City Break

CORSO BUENOS AIRES

The Corso Buenos Aires the equivalent of London’s Oxford Street you’ll find everything from high street brands, independent small boutiques to designer labels and shop till your heart’s content if you wish. Compared to the shopping streets of London it’s less overcrowded and a bit more laid back so you can shop with ease.

VIA MONTENAPOLEONE MILAN’S DESIGNER SHOPPING STREET

When you come to Milan I highly recommend checking out the Montenapoleone District for its luxury fashion boutiques serving the well heeled and discerning clientele. If you’re after the latest styles from the international catwalks you will find it here from big name luxury fashion houses such as Prada, Gucci, Dolce & Gabanna, Missoni, Versace and many more. This neighborhood is rich in history showcasing fine craftsmanship based on tradition to luxury fashion where money talks in this town.  Once a upon a time the street was home to aristocrats and the choice of wealthy families who resided here to open ateliers, boutiques and jewelers.

HOW TO GET THERE

Milan has two Airports Malpensa and Linate that serve both Europe as well as connecting International destinations worldwide. The airport with the closest proximity to the City is Linate which is 20 mins a Taxi to the city center and Malpensa 45 mins drive away.

From the U.K Milan is easily accessed by a short haul flight journey duration of 1 hour and 30 minutes from London Gatwick Airport with EasyJet and cost approximately £ 89 return which is fantastic value. You can always rely on EasyJet for competitive price and great customer service with a warm welcome from it’s friendly staff who are always very helpful.

I really recommend booking the extra add-ons when booking your flight through EasyJet such as extra leg room and speedy boarding as it makes all the difference so you can travel with ease and not need to worry about being in held up so you spend less time at the Airport.

Airport Transfer’s from Linate into the City Centre I would suggest taking a Taxi outside the Airport as it’s the easier option than taking public transport and cost approx 20 – 30 Euro’s or there’s the option of using an UBER which is available in Milan too if you prefer using this service is present in many countries worldwide.

For more information and booking inquiries on Flights to Milan Linate or Malpensa please visit EasyJet Airline

www.easyjet.com

Social Media Handles;

@easyjet #easyJetter

Disclosure: #AD I would like to Thank EasyJet.com for sponsoring my Travel during Camera Moda Milano Men’s Fashion Week and making this trip possible. All Opinions Expressed will be my own and prices quoted in this article will be subject to change by the companies mentioned e.g. EasyJet

CITY GUIDE TO SHORT BREAKS IN PARIS: THINGS TO DO IN 72 HOURS

PARIS

Hey guys I’ve just returned from a recent trip to Paris for Haute Couture Fashion Week and can’t wait to share with you what I got up to while I was in town for the shows. It was my first ever haute couture catwalk show in Paris and season with Fashion House Atelier Rani Zakhem who showcased his latest Autumn Winter 2018/19 Haute Couture Collection.

Let me take you on a chic tour of the city and the best bits that Paris has to offer as there is lots to see and do.!

But time permitting wise I could only make the most of the time I had available in between the shows which were my main intentions for coming to Paris for Fashion Week at the same time do some sightseeing.

Getting around Paris is easy on foot via the Metro but being Fashion Week I would much prefer to use UBER France who kindly contributed towards my short trip in Paris to ensure my journey ran smoothly getting me to the Airport and the shows at Fashion Week.

HOTELS IN PARIS IDEAL FOR SHORT STAYS & BUSINESS TRIPS

Paris City Breaks

MECURE HOTEL GARD DE LYON  

During Fashion Week in Paris location is crucial as you need to be able to get around as easy as possible especially if you’re new to the city. A central location in Paris works best and is close to all the main attractions and within easy reach of the Eurostar at Gard Du Nord station via the TVG overground train that runs from central Paris to Charles de Gaulle Airport takes just under an hour.

Paris City Breaks

The Mecure Hotel Gard de Lyon is a great hotel that is very welcoming with it’s friendly staff and the rooms are very clean and cosy too with modern contemporary interiors including the separate wash room / bathroom. Security at the hotel is imperative to ensure the safety of its staying guest such as swipe entry card system for the main hotel entrance after hours. Most importantly all bloggers need Wifi with fast internet access so we can stay updated on social media and share our amazing experiences of our travels with you.

 Paris City Breaks

 

Top image: Twin Room Suite This image: Bathroom inside Hotel Suite


THINGS TO TRY AND EXPERIENCE


MUSSEE DU LOUVRE

The Louvre Museum has to be one of the most iconic landmarks in Paris and the perfect Instagram selfie opportunity to take some holiday snaps for my readers. Just like Somerset House in London as you enter the grounds of the Louvre you go through an archway to see beautiful grounds, breathtaking scenery and the Louvre within walking distance. During a hot summers day it’s a very good idea to cool off by the Louvre Fountain and take in the atmosphere and amazing architecture. There are some interesting buildings nearby and footpaths where you can also catch a glimpse of the Eiffel Tower.

Paris City Breaks

Paris City Breaks

Paris City Breaks

HAUTE COUTURE PARIS FASHION WEEK

When people think of Paris they imagine a city that is very Stylish with lots of culture and has a reputation for high luxury fashion that competes with other fashion capitals of the world London, New York and Milan. If you’re lucky to get an invite to any of the Couture shows don’t miss out the opportunity to see the latest international trends dominating the Parisian Catwalks is very special indeed.

Paris City Breaks

DESIGNER SHOPPING

RUE FAUBOURG SAINT HONORE 

For those of us who love to shop our favourite designer labels you can find all the big names of International Fashion House from Dior, Chanel to Gucci if you happen to take a stroll in this exclusive shopping area of Paris. It looks very charming and pretty and night.

 

RUE DES FRANCS BOURGEOIS

In Paris you are so spoilt for choice when I comes to leading brands as well as smaller brands and local boutiques can be found in this street is a shopping mecca for fashionistas to shop and drop all day long then take a break by finding somewhere to have a spot of lunch nearby is within easy reach of restaurant in the Saint Paul area.

ROOFTOP BARS WITH THE BEST VIEWS OF PARIS

LE ROOFTOP BAR – THE PENINSULA PARIS

 Paris City BreaksPhoto: Nadia Rashid

Before coming to Paris I already planned on making a visit to The Peninsula Hotel in Paris which is a luxury hotel within walking distance of the Arc de Triomphe. Le Rooftop bar is perched on the 6th floor of the hotel with panoramic views over Paris and the perfect opportunity to take a break from the hustle and bustle of city life.

It has to be one of my favourite hotels in town because the view of the Eifel Tower is rather breathtaking from the hotels roof terrace equip with separate restaurant and bar. The hotel staff were very polite and attentive during my late afternoon drinks as I enjoyed my cool glass of Tattinger Champagne with views overlooking Paris. It’s very grand here but I feel so much at home with it being in the middle of Haute Couture Fashion Week and is the place to be scene. Definitely check it out next time you’re in town and who knows I could be staying here next time.

Paris City BreaksPhoto: Nadia Rashid

 

THE BUDDHA BAR PARIS

Paris City Breaks

The Buddha Bar Paris brand is widely recognised for its cool ambience and stylish playlist catering to the fashionista crowd and International Jet-set clientele. It’s a very relaxing place to have drinks in into the late evenings and dinner too downstairs in the restaurant. This restaurant serves a selection of Pan European Asian Cuisine and I recommend that you make a reservation as it can get very busy but the atmosphere is such a great vibe and all you would expect from a luxury restaurant and bar. The decor interior is very tranquil and gives you that feeling of transporting you to South East Asia and founded by the same owner of Barfly Bar Paris.

 

 

 

DISCOVER A TASTE OF CULTURE THROUGH CUISINE

 

MIZNON PARIS

Paris City Breaks

If you’re near Saint Paul in Paris you need to check out Miznon an Israeli restaurant specialising in grilled cuisines which is the best pita I have ever tasted. Everything is prepared with amazing fresh ingredients and full of flavours such as the house style Kebab garnished with red onions, beef meat, mint leaves and assorted vegetables. This restaurant is located in a Jewish quarter of Paris but we also discovered the upmarket boutiques some French and International fashion brands can be found only a stone’s throw away within walking distance.

 

LA VOLTIGEUR

Paris City Breaks

As it happens if you take a stroll through the streets of Paris there are so many restaurants and cafe’s to try and you are so spoilt for choice. Sometimes it’s best not to plan where to eat and just find somewhere which is how I came across La Voltigeur. This restaurant is situated in the Stylish shopping area of Rue Des Francs Paris also in the Saint Paul Area and is the perfect place for a spot of lunch as you do some designer shopping. They have very yummy treats here such as cakes and my favourite dish Croque Monsieur which is a famous cheese and ham toasted French sandwich that comes with a delicious side salad dressing.

EAST MAMMA

Paris City Breaks

If you’re a fan of authentic Italian food you will find exceptional food and friendly service at East Mamma Restaurant  and is very popular on the Parisian Scene with the locals too. East Mamma is part of the Big Mamma Restaurant group and serves the most exquisite dishes from Fresh Pasta, Pizza, Salads to sumptuous Deserts. During my dinner I decided to try their Pizza Napoletana Red Hot Burrata which comes with a spicy tomatoes sauce, hot sausage and topped with plenty of Mozzarella cheese for texture.  If you like pasta I would highly recommend the Gnocchi Alla Sorrentina served with fresh tomatoes, basil and mozzarella. All portions of food served is a very large size suitable for 2 people to share which is very filling.

Paris will always have a special place in my heart and would like to immerse myself in the language and culture next time I visit again for Fashion Week.  They call Paris the City of Lights for a reason so come visit this wonderful intriguing city and experience it for yourself.

Disclaimer: A special thank you to UBER for partnering with me during this trip and contributing towards my travel journeys in Paris. In any case, as always, all opinions will be my own.

A GUIDE TO LOS ANGLES & WEEKEND GETAWAYS IN LAGUNA BEACH ORANGE COUNTY

California Holidays

LOS ANGELES & ORANGE COUNTY

LA the City of Angels is home to Tinsel Town Hollywood’s film industry, the playground to the Rich and Famous boast some of the most amazing beaches, social scene to the most fabulous shopping.

I share with you some of my favourite Stylish hot spots, Trendy neighborhoods and places to visit. The first time I encountered LA I was so fascinated by the cult fashion movie Clueless I just had to come to America and fell in love with Beverley Hills 90210. If you’re also an O.C. fan Laguna Beach The Real Orange County is on the itinerary for a long weekend break as I gain access to one of the most pristine private beaches is paradise.

THE  BEST HOTELS IN LOS ANGELES

THE ROOSEVELT HOTEL

It’s one the oldest Hotels in Hollywood which lots of history so I’m told but it’s a great place to hang out in the evenings and star gaze if you can spot them. As a guest you have access to the pool area and its strictly by guest list only. The cast members of THE HILLs once hung out here and other trendy night spots in town Le Deux, Area, the Hyde club may have moved on since then.

California Holidays

For those of you that have yet to experience Tinsel town as a tourist there is so much to see especially if you’re a film buff and into Hollywood Cinema. With that said make Universal Studios a must do excursion and do the Studio Tour where you can get to know how films were made on set from the legendary King Kong, Alfred Hitchcock movies to the Desperate Housewives television series. Get close up to all time favorite tv shows, epic theme park rides and more.

Visit California

Where to take in the Best views of the LA City skyline from Roof Top Bars to Poolside Lifestyles where living the dream becomes a reality.

Visit California

Visit California

Visit California

THE POOL PARTIES

Great spots for hanging out by the Pool include The Mondrian Hotel and The Standard Dowtown LA is very chic with the Young Hollywood and Jet Set Crowd.

Visit California

Visit California

VISIT WEST HOLLYWOOD MOST FAMOUS ZIP CODES


MELROSE WEST HOLLYWOOD

Favourite neighborhood’s in West Hollywood of mine are Melrose a trendy location infamous for its notorious zip code made famous by Darren Star’s TV Show Melrose Place where aspiring 20 something’s move into an apartment block with a pool and host parties every week. Sounds like my kind of party. Not only that the shopping is great and I really love coming to this part of town to visit stores Opening Ceremony, Fred Segal and Kitson for unique designer and one of kind items of clothing.

California Holidays

Come hang at these cool LA hotspots in town from The Farmers Market and make a wish in the Grove Fountain, who knows it could be you’re lucky day.


 

A tourist hot spot for visitors especially if you’re new to LA it’s such a great place to hang out and meet friends. Also, the Grove Fountain within the market is a great place for a date it’s so romantic in the evenings when it’s all lit up. Things to do while you’re there include shopping at the retail stores such as Abercrombie and Victoria’s Secret to independent market stall vendors and excellent restaurants and bars.

Visit California

DESIGNER SHOPPING ON RODEO DRIVE

 

The walk of fame is situated on Hollywood Boulevard and you can pay homage to your favourite Celebrities past and present.

It can get very busy at times but mainly tourist attraction for first time visitors to Los Angeles and don’t forget The Manns Chinese Theatre its very grand. Are you familiar with the movie Pretty Woman this would be the street where Julia Roberts stared in the Hollywood Movie spending Uncle Edwards Money without a care in the world. Lucky Girl if you can do it. The best part I just had to visit those famous Spanish Steps where Cher in Clueless walks down to the bottom of the fountain then shops at Dior. The famous line ‘I wonder if they have that in my size’ that sums up my shopping trip to Rodeo Drive for today and it was fabulous.

 HOLLYWOOD WALK OF FAME

The walk of fame is situated on Hollywood Boulevard and you can pay homage to your favourite Celebrities past and present. It can get very busy at times but mainly tourist attraction for first time visitors to Los Angeles and don’t forget The Manns Chinese Theatre its very grand.

Discover the best shopping in LA has to offer on Rodeo Drive neighborhood of Beverly Hills

Visit California

Los Angeles has a coast line stretch full of beaches but Santa Monica Beach is LA’s local beach, a bit too touristy for me but you can hang out here go for a jog, rolla blade, skate or visit the amusement park on the pier for fun fair attractions and food vendors.

Visit California

Make a Weekend Trip excursion to Laguna Beach just 1 hours drive from LA

Laguna Beach Orange County is a one hour drive from Los Angeles which boast long stretches of pristine sandy beaches and clear blue water. Although it’s a very small town it’s paradise and it’s great if you can have access to a private beach depending on the location and was very lucky in this instance. Hotels in town the best place you can stay is at The Montage Hotel in Laguna CA or alternatively renting an apartment through AIR’BNB  is a great option through personal experience for a flexible stays. For designer shopping head to the South Coast Plaza Mall you can spend all day here it’s heaven for shopaholics where you will find everything from high street, mid range to luxury fashion labels is the best shopping experience you cannot miss out on and Fashion Island in NewPort Beach nearby.

California Holidays

 DISCOVER A TASTE OF CULTURE THROUGH CUISINE

Pinks Hotdogs’ a take out restaurant serving the most delicious hotdogs named by Celebrities is worth stopping buy for a bite to eat if your up for experiencing some real Authentic American food while on vacation.

WOLF GANG PUCK

The Wolfgang Puck is a fine dinning group with Worldwide franchises including my favourite The Cut Beverley Hills and in London Park Lane. The renowned acclaimed Austrian Chef has worked in the finest restaurants in France and quickly garnered the attention of Hollywood’s elite with his dynamic personality, culinary skills and passion for Californian Cuisine.

Other excursions I recommend taking while in Los Angeles are taking weekend of debauchery and fun in the City of Sin Las Vegas from the infamous Strip aligned with Casino’s, Grand Hotels, Exquisite Shopping to exclusive pool lounges and vibrant Nightlife and Vegas Shows with alluring international clientele.

Editorial Disclaimer: This article was inspired by my own personal experience of being on vacation in California. As always all opinions are my own