Saturday, 30 January 2016

Launch of The World's Highest Open-Air Champagne Bar.


On Thursday 22nd January, Lebua Hotels launched their new champagne bar; Flute A Perrier-Jouet bar, in partnership with Perrier-Jouet champagne. Located on the 64th floor of Lebua in Bangkok, sipping champagne at Flute is an exclusive one-of-a-kind experience that you won't get anywhere else in the world. I attended the launch along with Bangkok's 'HiSo', so thought I'd tell you a bit about it!


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Thursday, 28 January 2016

Ultimate Luxury at Tower Club at Lebua Hotel, Bangkok.


The Tower Club at Lebua in Bangkok is one of the most luxurious hotels in the city. However Lebua is no ordinary hotel, housed within the State Tower of Bangkok, and with the famous Sky Bar on the 64th floor, they pride themselves on exclusivity and high quality service, and the hotel was even chosen for the filming of The Hangover II! Tower Club is the only luxury hotel in Bangkok which is all-suite and all-club, with breathtaking views of Bangkok and the Chao Phraya River from every suite!



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Wednesday, 27 January 2016

The Ritz Restaurant, Mayfair.


I've been to The Ritz many times over the years, mainly to The Ritz Club, however, which is an opulent and outrageously beautiful private members club in the basement of The Ritz Hotel. 

I have fond memories of drinking champagne in the bar there, listening to the Thursday night jazz music, and one time in particular when I was 20 and there with a group of friends (I actually blogged about it briefly here); I was sat in the middle of two men, one of them I was dating, and the other I had dated in the past...needless to say they didn't see eye to eye and while everyone sat there awkwardly doing the wide-eyed 'shit, what do we do?' eyes at me, I sat there gleefully with a grin on my face relishing the moment. I can be a bit of a bitch like that sometimes. #sorrynotsorry


Anyway, last night I finally tested out The Ritz Restaurant upstairs in the hotel. It was as beautiful as the club, with gold everywhere and artwork that makes you swoon. Every part of The Ritz makes you feel as though you've gone back a hundred years, if it wasn't for the way people were dressed and the cameras and phones everywhere, you could easily have believed you were in an era where the monarch was a King and the party in power were the Liberals.
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Monday, 25 January 2016

Hotel Review: Mandarin Oriental, Paris.


Back in August I was invited to review the bar at the Mandarin Oriental in Paris, it was a pretty magical experience, and in the height of summer the bar was a tranquil oasis in a hot and busy European city. I’ve been to Paris three times since August, and the last time I was very fortunate to be invited to review the Mandarin Oriental hotel. I took my mum with me, and bought her Eurostar ticket for Christmas as a treat. She’s done so much for me over the years and we’ve never had a girlie weekend just the two of us, so we were both pretty excited.


 I already had an idea of what the hotel would be like as I had a tour the same time I reviewed the bar, however the experience of actually staying there was even more impressive. We arrived on Saturday afternoon and as soon as the car pulled up to the entrance the doors were opened, bags removed, and we were given a warm welcome. While we waited to check in we sipped on champagne, before being taken up to our room.

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Sunday, 24 January 2016

The Hurlingham Club Comedy Night.


So I haven't blogged in almost two weeks, I was in Thailand last week and the week before was crazy busy (is it just me or does anyone else get super booked-up and busy the week before you go away?!), so I thought I'd take some time to tell you a little bit about the Hurlingham Club Comedy Night I went to recently! At first I wasn't sure if I was gonna go because it was the night before I had to head to Paris before Bangkok, but a few of my friends were going so I decided to just do it. It was a pretty awesome night, and I'm so glad I went now.


I wore the gorgeous 'Monroe' Dress from littleblackdress.co.uk, which is currently on sale FYI. I had so many compliments on it, it's classy and classic but the cut of it is super sexy.
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Monday, 11 January 2016

The Sisterhood of World Bloggers - Travel Tag.


I don't often do tag posts, but after Angie recently tagged me in the 'Sisterhood of World Bloggers' one, I thought why not! The questions are kinda fun and they'll give you a little insight into me and my travels. So without further ado...

Swanbourne Beach Western Australia





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Thursday, 7 January 2016

How to Survive a 24+ Hour Flight.


After flying many many flights that have lasted 24 hours or more, I thought I would write a blog post with advice on how to survive them and not go stir crazy! My first 24 hour flight was when I was seven years old. We flew from London to Perth via Singapore, stopping off at Singapore for 3 nights on the way there, and flying all the way through on the way back. We've repeated that exact flight path dozens of times over the years, and I've even mixed it up by flying from London to Perth via Dubai, Qatar, and Hong Kong, with the Hong Kong route lasting over 30 hours.

Photo by Jakob Owens, unsplash.com


I'm just gonna put it out there - I love long haul flights. Love them. However, I never used to. I still remember being thirteen years old on our way to Australia, it was the first time we'd flown all the way through on the way out without stopping. We were in Singapore airport waiting for the next flight and I burst into tears because I couldn't bear the thought of spending another 5 hours on a plane. When you're travelling for 24 hours, it's hard. It's tiring, and it's frustrating. But there are a few things I do that make it actually pretty enjoyable! And the best thing is these tips apply whatever cabin you're flying in; economy, business, or first (although lay-flat beds definitely help the flight experience ;)).


1. Think Positive

The biggest thing for me is thinking positively. After that Singapore airport incident I decided that I needed to look at the positive side of long flights. When else do you get to sit down for the majority of 24 hours (not including transfer time obvs), watch a heap of movies, read a book, and just relax, without feeling guilty and as though you should be doing something more productive? My life is so busy that I rarely do this, so for me flying is downtime, a chance to rest and recharge before an awesome holiday.


2. Remember: you get waited on!

The most important thing to remember when flying is to be polite to the airline staff, always. Even if there's an issue, the nicer you are about it the more likely they'll try and help you. However, it's pretty awesome on long haul flights getting waited on hand and foot. You just gett to sit there and have all your food and drink brought to you without you having to lift a finger (or having to get your card out and pay extra a-la Easyjet). Make sure you respect the staff though and don't press the buzzer for things you can easily just go get yourself (like snacks - usually airlines have a help-yourself basket in the area where the food is kept).


3. Wear comfortable clothing

When I'm on a long haul flight that's lasting an entire day and night, there is no way I'm looking good. I do not care who sees me, I'm wearing leggings, a big jumper, and a big scarf, with my hair up and no makeup. 


4. Take a change of clothes

Talking of clothing, always pack a change of clothes and underwear (and bikini) in your hand-luggage. If you spill curry down you (which happens fairly often on flights that go via Asia which serve Asian food and are prone to turbulence), you can just go into the toilet and change your top or bottoms. Also, if your checked bag gets lost, it means you have a change of clothes, underwear, and bikini to use before you get your luggage back or the chance to buy new clothing.


5. Pack your toiletry bag well

In my toiletry bag I always pack; deodorant, toothbrush, mini toothpaste, mini perfume, mini wet wipes, a thick face moisturiser, hand cream, hand sanitizer, basic makeup (foundation, eyeliner, mascara, blusher), and then my inhaler. I also carry a little pack with paracetamol, ibuprofen plus (nurofen & codeine), anti-diarrhea tablets, antihistamines, and anti-nausea tablets. You never know when you might need any of these on a 24 hour flight or when you're in transit!


6. Plan before you go

I'm talking about movies here, fyi. A few days before I fly I look up all the movies and tv shows that will be on my specific flight, and mentally plan what I'm going to watch and in what order. Apart from the destination it gives me something to look forward to on the flight. Also I find it's pretty important what order you watch things in. I start with heavy dark films and dramas when I'm still all happy and excited for the trip, and leave the comedy and light entertainment (ie; Friends and Big Bang Theory box sets) for towards the end when you're bum starts to hurt and you get all claustrophobic and fed up. 


7. Sleep when you can

Even if it means you miss a meal, sleep is worth it. Plus, on the decent airlines you can just ask them for snacks and they'll bring you sandwiches and crisps, nuts, chocolate etc. If you're on a red-eye and feel tired when you first get on a flight, sleep, just give in to it. Even if you're trying to adjust your body for jetlag, just sleep now and adjust to jetlag when you land. It's much easier. Having said that, I do book my flights from London to Perth based on the flight times to help my body adjust to jetlag easier (ie; I always fly on a red-eye so I have a coupla hours nap on the plane, then stay awake the rest of the flight and then land in Perth around 2am and instantly go to sleep when I land, then wake up around 11am refreshed and ready to go!).

virgin atlantic premium economy seats



8.  Drink plenty of water

This is so important. I'm such a water baby anyway, I'm not a huge fan of other drinks, I can quite happily just drink tap water. But you really need to drink as much as possible to stay hydrated. Don't take a bottle and ask them to fill it as the 'taps' on planes are notoriously filthy dirty. Instead just ask them to fill it with their own bottled water.


9. Exercise

I fidget a lot when I'm watching films just to keep myself moving. The people sitting next to me probably think I have something wrong with me, but whatevs. I used to tap dance, so I'll often stretch my legs out infront of me and just have a little tap dance while watching a movie or tv show. In-between films or episodes I get up and walk around for 10mins and go to the bathroom before sitting down for the next one.


10. Moisturise Frequently

In-between films I also moisturise my face, my hands, and apply lip balm. It really helps my skin stay fresh and means I don't arrive with it all dry and nasty.


11. Make the most of the transfer

I usually have a couple of hours in-between my flights. My Singapore airlines days ended a few years ago, and I'm a frequent flyer with Emirates these days so I usually stop at Dubai, unless tickets are drastically cheaper with Qatar or any of the other airlines. I know Dubai airport like the back of my hand (despite never having stepped outside of it), so as soon as I get off the plane I race to the nearest toilet and have a refresh (face wipes, deodorant, toothbrush and toothpaste etc). 

I then spend my entire time in-between flights walking around to get some exercise. When I had a silver Emirates card I'd go to the lounge, and shower and stock up on food there. I haven't had that for a coupla years though as they changed their membership system and you now have to fly a ridiculous amount with them within a year to get Silver or Gold. So I wander round and get some food and a drink, and on the off chance I fly business I obvs go to the lounge (they have massage chairs - hellooooo). 


12. Freshen up when you arrive

When you arrive at your destination, while waiting for the bags to come out head to the toilet and freshen up. Face wipes, deodorant, toothbrush/toothpaste, and after moisturising your face apply some light makeup. I find this really refreshes me and applying a small amount of makeup after 24hours without makes me feel really good! 

Take a look at my vlog below from my last flight from London to Australia! You can also pin the image below the vlog to come back to this post later on ;)






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Tuesday, 5 January 2016

A New Year Steak Lunch at Barbecoa, St Paul's.


On Saturday my family and I headed up to London for a New Year lunch at Barbecoa in St Paul's, before my brother went back to Uni. We're all massive meat and fish eaters, so were looking forward to a menu that consists of some pretty awesome meat and fish options. On top of that the desserts looked ah-mazing. And how beautiful is the view over St Paul's Cathedral?!



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Sunday, 3 January 2016

My 2016 Travel Plans and Wishes.


It's that time of year again! After an epic 2015 which saw me visit four new countries, go on three press trips, and have a total of 10 trips outside of London, all while having a full-time job, I'm hoping 2016 will be even bigger and better! I already have a couple of holidays and trips booked in for 2016, and then of course there are my ideas and destinations that are perhaps a little adventurous and out of reach. So without further ado...

Source



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Friday, 1 January 2016

Lux Life 2015 Round-Up.


Each year I do a huge year-round-up. This year I wasn't sure how to do it though as I've been doing more 'monthly' ones, so I thought I'd do it a little differently this year. Instead of giving you a big long post listing everything I've done this year, I thought I'd just focus on the travels I've been on, the personal events I've been to (aka, ones I went to with friends rather than off the back of my blog), and my plans for 2016! Let's face it, if you read my blog you've probably read the restaurant reviews and blogger event posts over the past year, and I doubt you want to read about them all over again ;)


Travels

My travels this year have been pretty awesome. As well as my usual trip back to Australia, I also finally completed a lifetime wish to swim with sea turtles, and I also stood on the top of a mountain above the clouds! I had ten trips outside of London, and visited four new countries this year; Slovakia, Poland, St Vincent and The Grenadines, and Barbados. I only got to spend a couple of hours exploring Barbados though, so you can find out what I got up to in this post. To be honest I think that's pretty good going considering I have a full time job with limited holiday days!

January 2015: London Staycation
February 2015: High Tatras, Slovakia
February 2015: Brighton, UK
March/April 2015: Perth, Australia
April 2015: North Wales, UK
August 2015: Paris, France
August 2015: Cornwall, UK
October 2015: Paris, France
November 2015: Krakow, Poland
December 2015: North Wales, UK

Personal Events (non blog related) 



Casino Royal Night at Tramp
Royal Overseas League Burns Night
Pretty Green Party at Gibson Lounge
Olivier Awards 2015
Childerley Hall Food Festival
Grey Goose VX Launch Party
VE Day A Party to Remember
BAFTA Club Eurovision Party 
Lansdowne Club Moveable Feast
Polo in the Park 2015
Elizabeth Street Party 2015
Royal Ascot Royal Enclosure 2015
Downton Abbey Evening at The Savile Club
Henley Royal Regatta 2015
Royal Automobile Club Summer Ball
Royal Overseas League James Bond Ball
W Amsterdam Launch Party
Lansdowne Club Christmas Ball 2015

As well as numerous birthday parties, drinks, nights out, and events that didn't make it on to the blog....the above list is only some of what did make it onto Lux Life, which is a tiny drop in the ocean! As always I had a pretty epic year of parties, and spent a lot of time having fun with friends!

I also had plenty of blog-related events, which you can read about in my various monthly roundups!

My Birthday Celebrations



Unlike last year, instead of one big birthday night out this year I had two smaller ones, and then a third very small one just to make up for Roof Gardens messing up My Birthday Take One. Birthday Take One was awesome, I had so much fun and I was so grateful to the dozens of friends that came to help me celebrate, but Roof Gardens put us on the wrong table and didn't give us the sharing cocktails we were promised. They kindly made up for it by giving me another night out which turned into Birthday Take Three.

Birthday Take Two was also awesome, a smaller group of friends and I went to Barts then Boujis, where we had our own VIP private room, bottles of Dom Perignon, and generally had a bloody good time. Until some dude turned up and paid way more money for the private room so we got moved to a table in the normal area. Boo. We still had an epic night though, which ended in VQ. Standard.

You can read all about my 24th Birthday Celebrations here and here.

Plans for 2016

So my plans for 2016 are pretty huge and life-changing. I can't say too much right now as it's all up in the air still, but what I want to happen is pretty big. Some of you will know about it already, and some of you will have no idea unless it happens (fingers crossed)! And no, I'm not planning on going full-time with the blog, or getting married or pregnant before anyone asks, haha (although meeting a lovely guy who makes me laugh and who loves me for me (aka: doesn't bat an eyelid when I randomly burst into song) would be nice - anyone know one of those!?).

I don't really do resolutions as I can never stick to them, but I have a large list of things I'd like to achieve and do in 2016. Both to make myself a better person, and to help myself feel a bit happier in my life. In 2015 my main 'thing' I wanted to do was to cut out fizzy drinks, and I've done a pretty good job! I used to drink an insane amount of coca-cola and lemonade (especially as we get them free at work!), and I've managed to cut it down so I now only have a coca-cola if I'm on a night out and I have one before I drive home.

Blog-wise my plans are to attend less blogger events, as you can see from above the events I attend just in my personal life with my IRL friends, I go to a lot of different events and social things, and I need to learn to say no to blogger events (unless they sound EPIC) so I don't burn myself out and can still see my 'normal' friends. With blogger stuff I much prefer to just go for lunch or dinner/drinks with a smaller group of bloggers who I'm friends with, I don't want to sound ungrateful or bitchy, but ain't nobody got time to spend precious evenings with people you're probably never gonna see again!

I really want to get better at juggling my full time job with my blog. My blog has suffered so much over the past year or so because I just don't have time to promote it or be active on social media, so I really want to make a conscious effort to schedule social media posts on the weekends so they can go out automatically during the week when I'm at work without me having to worry about it. Hopefully this will help increase my stats so they're not so static all the time! I also need to get better at commenting and replying to comments! 

So, as we enter a new year, I say farewell to a year of epic parties, numerous friends' birthday celebrations, nights out, good times with the family, black tie balls, drinks and lunches with the work gang, and incredible travels and experiences, and I say hello to all of that...and more.


HELLO 2016!

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