Tuesday, 17 September 2013

This Man of Mine

I have to take a moment and give credit where credit is due. Because this man of mine does a whole lot more than I could ever ask or give him credit for. 

So in celebration of what he calls his 'funeral' of turning 30 (even though we all know he'll forever act like he's in his 20's) I am making this post an ode to the birthday boy. The man behind the blog who doesn't get the spotlight nearly enough. 

So here's to the the man who....

has awesome photos like this from when he was little. Seriously, anytime I'm having a bad day, this photo instantly makes me feel better. 
forever changed my mind about redheads. I mean come on, how can you not think that red headed little cowboy is adorable?!

is patient with me in working on my fears. He's actually holding my hand so I don't go back up!
edits and shoots all of our photos. That's right. Every photo on here that doesn't look like it was taken with a phone (I take full credit for those) was produced by him. I couldn't ask for a better blogging partner.
always knows just how to make me smile.
gets up early every.single.morning to make us breakfast so I can take my time getting ready for work.

lets kids dress him up and who made my heart melt when we were kindi teachers and he would make up stories and tell them everyday in class.

is a daredevil extraordinaire. And even though I have had to close up, clean up and take care of more wounds than I care to count, I can never say that life with him is boring.
So, to the man who is above and beyond what I ever could have hope for...
30 has never looked so good.

Haute Spot in Paris: Le Bristol's 114 Faubourg

 Hotel Le Bristol receives its fourth Michelin star; I was invited in to celebrate in Paris! 114 Faubourg is one of the most exceptional restaurants in the city of light. Some are calling it the temple of Parisian gastronomy because of its trio of outstanding chefs… Chef Eric Desbordes, mentored by Eric Frechon, Hotel Le Bristol’s Chef des Cuisines and Laurent Jeannin the hotel’s Pastry Chef.

Hotel Le Bristol, set in an 18th Century-style palace with paintings from the old masters along the fashionable rue du Saint Faubourg Honore, offers a restaurant with a contemporary take on French cuisine in an atmosphere of hauteness.

While in Paris, I was invited in to sample some of their most popular selections. My friend Catherine came along as my guest to share in the celebration. It was truly a delightful experience.

Here’s my menu selection:
Champagne Deutz

Lobster from Brittany, Green Beans Salad with Raspberry Seasoning (36 €)

Main Course
Mature Beef Ribeye with potatoes (130 €)

Profiteroles with Coconut Ice Cream and Caribbean Chocolate Sauce (19 €)

After Dinner

Herbal Tea (5 €)

Haute Beauty Tip: drybar Blowouts

When you're on the go but need a quick blowout, drybar in Atlanta maybe the answer. I was invited to try the services and I have to tell you, I really like some of their products like the Hot Toddy and Treatment Oil. 

It's really simple, shampoo, condition, blowout and style! No color, cuts or anything else. It's as simple as that for just $35! My blowout wasn't spectacular but it did the job. If you're in a pinch and need a cost-effective way to get your hair done, try a drybar near you.

The salon is also really cute. I love the white decor with yellow accents and vintage glam design.

Hidden Haute Spot in Paris: Castille Paris Hotel

This romantic boutique hotel is one of the haute spots for Chanel’s corporate movers and shakers. Tucked away on Chanel’s legendary street, Rue Cambon, Castille Paris is where French and Italian style merge for the ultimate luxurious escape.

This peaceful 5-Star hotel, located in the first Arrondissement, is close to many local attractions such as the Louvre, the Opera Garnier and Place Vendome. This 18th Century residence features an amazing collection of art and antiques offering 108 rooms and suites that are fabulous and chic. The Rivoli Wing is a tribute to Coco Chanel, who started her fashion empire right next door! I really liked the black and white with beige palettes complimented by Robert Doisneau's stunning black and white photography of Paris in the 1930's.

My favorite suite is the duplex perfectly complementing French design and architecture. I love it because the floor plans offered bi-level duplex layouts or single level. The suites also offer lots of lighting, mirrors, velvet furniture, Calacatta marble baths and space for a Haute Travels girl's needs. I even loved the Etro Italian beauty and bath products sitting on my vanity. But my favorite part of the suite, the famous goose down Starbed a feature at Starhotel properties plus complimentary WIFI.

Here’s a look inside my suite at Castille Paris... 

And now here's a look at the two story duplex suite... 

Monday, 16 September 2013

Travel Tuesdays-Nepal

Just a little something to spark your wanderlust for the week.
“A wise traveler never despises his own country.” – Carlo Goldoni

Sunday, 15 September 2013

Lessons Learned From Traveling With Your Man

"I have found out that there ain't no surer way to find out whether you like people or hate them than to travel with them." - Mark Twain
Thankfully through traveling to three continents and eleven different countries together, my husband and I have fallen more in love with each other (and traveling) than the dreaded latter of the quote above. But through our world galavanting, we've not only learned more about ourselves, but we've also learned some priceless lessons about each other. So I've compiled a list of five things that you can expect to learn when traveling with your man.

1. Bathroom language just can't be avoided. Especially when you spend every day for two weeks chowing down on some Thai green curry and a bathroom break is required within 10 minutes of finishing. Check out this post to see what are must haves in your medicine kit

2. Hanger is real...and ugly. I truly believe that all things said out of hunger should immediately be forgiven and forgotten. End of story. Oh and always carry snacks with you when traveling...always. 

3. Your fights while traveling will most likely become hilarious stories...later on. Keep that in mind while traveling. My favorite happened while on our honeymoon in Fiji. We decided to take a hobie cat and sail to a nearby island about a mile away. I had warned my new husband that it may be the wrong time to do this since the wind was dying down; but we went anyway and made it there in no time. Well when we were heading back, the wind died. I'm not just saying, it died down, I mean, there was zip zero zilch wind coming our way. We were stuck about half a mile from either island, in the blazing heat of the sun and for some reason we made the wise decision not to put on sunscreen that day. Being stuck, with no sun screen, and no way back does not make for a fun day of sailing. Of course at the time it wasn't funny but it didn't take long for us to laugh about it later. 

4. Their true side will be shown quicker while traveling than in day to day life. Combine unfamiliar territory, different languages and cultures and you've got yourself a mix dangerous enough to send the most calm and collected guy into a panic. And rightfully so. Thankfully, I've found a guy that stays cool even in the midst of canceled flights, being lost in an unfamiliar city or worst of all, trying to find the nearest bathroom after the aforementioned green curry outings. Because let's be honest, those are the times that I panic the most.

5. One will always be more adventurous than the other. I'd like to think of myself as a fairly adventurous person but that doesn't even come close to what my husband likes to do. This inevitably means that we make compromises when we travel. My husband's life long dream is the go cage diving with great white sharks in Cape Town, South Africa. This is a perfect example of when I'm definitely not as adventurous as he is. Cuddling up with tigers? Yes. Zip lining in the jungle? Why not? Swimming with whale sharks? Do you even have to ask? But Great White Sharks? I'll be in the boat documenting it all, thank you very much. Fair compromise right?

Needless to say; everyday is a new challenge, a new adventure, and a new story to be told. And we can't wait to see what happens next! If you liked this piece, check out my post about How to Travel Without Killing Each Other.

*this post was originally used as a guest post on The Nectar Collective

Saturday, 14 September 2013

Overseas Packing

When packing up to live overseas, there is a weird balance of what to pack. You never know exactly what you'll need and you never know if you'll be able to find certain things where you're moving. We were allowed two 50 pound bags each but when you think of the clothes and housing items that you need to bring with, those 50 pounds might as well been 10. Also, we were told that the washers are not exactly the most gentle machines (I have the holy clothes to prove it). So we shouldn't bring out highest quality or most expensive clothes with.
What I did want to bring that was more expensive and high quality were hair appliances. I brought with me my hair straightener because even the cheaply made ones here are expensive and my curling iron; because those are just about impossible to come by where we live. I bought good brands because I wasn't sure that if they did break, if I would be able to replace them easily. I didn't want to chance it. So, needless to say that after almost three years of living abroad with the same straightener, I am long overdue for an upgrade and thankfully the people at Missiko agreed and sent me their Hanna Pro Flat Iron to try out.
And I have to say, this flat iron was rated so high for a reason! I'm not sure if it is because my old flat iron was so old, or maybe this thing really is just that good; but my hair has never felt better after using it. It straightened my slightly wavy hair easily and quickly without having to go over the same area twice like I have been doing with my previous appliance. And it left my hair silky and shiny, a rarity for my usual dry hair. One of my favorite parts about it though is how light it is! When we travel, every ounce counts and I have things like hair appliances talking up more weight and room than we have.

If you're in the market for anything from hair straighteners to blowdryers, then Missiko has got you covered. Check out their full selection here.

*product was given in exchange for a review however, all opinions are my own