Vanilla Moon, a contemporary chic footwear brand has launched its new store at Linking Road, Bandra. If the store launch is anything to go by, the brand seems to have perfectly understood the needs of Mumbai women. We inevitably find ourselves on Linking Road (the hub of all trendy shoes in the city) when hunting for ‘that perfect pair’.
Vanilla Moon shoes are created by experienced Italian designers and boast of Indian craftsmanship. Which basically means that their shoes have a trendy European influence, and are dependable owing to fine workmanship. If you are the kind of person who does not want to compromise on style just to put your feet in something comfortable, you will fall in love with the brand. From office must-haves to boho-chic, the Vanilla Moon collection has you covered.
On the day of the launch, the store had arranged to give out complimentary foot rubs (I could kiss them), refreshments, discounts on purchase, and mini-cupcakes (are these guys for real?). The best part about the launch was that while you could feel something special is up, it wasn’t overt enough to be an inconvenience to customers. Contemporary Connect, which managed this launch for Vanilla Moon, did a fabulous job.
The store has classy and elegant interiors. The staff is knowledgeable and also gives helpful suggestions. They have a bag and wallet collection on display as well. The next time you are shoe-shopping at Linking Road, do check out Vanilla Moon. You’ll be sure to find something that makes sense. (I should know, I ended up buying three pairs!)
Dubai is one of the hottest tourist destinations nowadays. With an incessant amount of money being poured into the city, Dubai rates as probably the topmost destination among today’s desi traveller. We bring you the bucket list of all the places to visit in Dubai.
What to DO/SEE?
- Dessert Safari– Its a different experience all together from the car drive on the sand-dunes to live belly dance to dessert biking to their hookahs. This activity is a must for all first-time visitors.
- Sky diving– Skydive Dubai, it is at one of the world’s premier skydiving location, neighboring the luxurious manmade island The Palm Jumeirah and the Dubai Marina. With these beautiful and breathtaking views, Skydive Dubai should definitely be in your to-do list!
- Water show near Burj Khalifa– The Dubai Fountain features water that jets as high as 450 ft (140 metres), which is equivalent to a 45-storey building. It is definitely worth a watch.
- Ferrari World– If you have one full day, you should definitely go here. Situated in Abu Dhabi, it is a 2 hour drive from Dubai. You can easily find a bus service from Dubai. This is largest indoor amusement park of the world and is the home to the World’s fastest roller coaster. So if you have time, definitely visit it.
- Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque– Situated in Abu Dhabi, this mosque is UAE largest mosque. I went here after completely drained from Ferrari world and this place simply relaxed me. It is such a beautiful visual delight, you can just sit and stare at it the whole night. The work on the walls and the beautiful chandeliers, the gorgeous carpets to the breathtaking ceilings, all are complete visual treat to the eyes. It feels as if you have entered in the palace of “Jasmine” from Aladdin series. This should be definitely on your to-go-to places.
What to EAT?!
- Cheesecake Factory– Walk through the front doors of The Cheesecake Factory and you will know you are in for something special. The size of the cakes, the serving size of each dishes and their smoothness. Personally I enjoyed smoothies more than their cake while my friends were enjoying the cakes more.
- Aroos Damacus– One of the best places in Dubai to have authentic Arabic food. Situated in the Old Dubai, its all localities favourite for their Arabic food craving.
- Le Pain Quotidien– After a long flight to Dubai, this place was a welcome delight. What really works for me is that everything is organic, you can actually taste the freshness and crispness of the ingredients in the food. Their jams (inhouse produced) were super yum. The cappuccinos were made the way I like. Absolutely in love with their salad dressings!
Other places which I didn’t get time to try but were recommended by my fellow foodies friends were- Five guys and shake shack for burgers, Joe’s crab in dubai mall, Ravi in satwa for Non veg, Karam Express for pocket friendly and delicious Lebanese, Salt and Mooyah for burgers, Zaatar W Zeit, Mythos for great Greek food, Bu Qtair for seafood in Jumeirah, Tom & Serg, Aprons and Hammers for seafood and Paul for great deli fare and Shakespeare for desserts, coffee and sheesha. The list of suggestions is quiet long, so choose wisely! 🙂
Where to CHILL?
- Barasti Bar– If lazy beach days are your thing, there’s no better place to while away the hours than the award winning Barasti Beach. Barasti offers the perfect mix of great music, delicious food and divine cocktails against the stunning backdrop of Dubai Marina.
- Siddharta Lounge By Buddha-Bar-Luxurious deck with welcoming hosts, good view of marina and some amazing sheeshas. It is located on the 20th floor and the minute you walk in, you are in for a visual treat. Do not come here for food or expect amazing food service, please have your dinners and pre-drink before coming cause the service is slow and the place is a little on a pricier side. Simply come here for the ambiance and for the visual treat.
- Pulse, Move & Pick Hotel- If Bollywood music is your thing, then you’ll find a little India in the heart of Dubai. Stag entry is 100 AED which is not redeemable on drinks or food inside, so make sure you go in a couple.
Other places which were on my to-chill list were Pacha, Cavalli Club, Armani Prive and Pier 7.
Where to SHOP?
If you have gone to Dubai and not shopped, then it’s not a proper holiday. The Dubai Shopping Festival 2017 dates has been declared and it is an opportunity you should not miss. It is from 26th December 2016 to 28th January 2017. We tell you the places where you should shop.
- Global Village– is the leading family cultural, shopping and entertainment destination in the region, with a unique shopping experience at 32 pavilions representing more than 75 countries with different cultures. So be prepared to “oooh” and “aah” cause you’ll find some really great things to buy.
- Outlet Mall– The mall is dedicated to being a true and ultimate value retail destination and you can snap up discounts of between 30%-90% on the majority of products available in the 240 stores. They house brands like Burberry, Diesel, Banana Republic etc.
- Meena Bazaar– In dilliwala’s language “Dubai ka Chandani Chowk”. You can shop here for Pakistani Suits, Gold and Itar. Bargaining is the trick here to get good stuff at cheap prices.
- NYX and Victoria Secret Makeup– these makeup brand are dirt cheap in Dubai. So make sure, you go and stock up these brands.
- Baklava and Dates– Specialty of Dubai. Junk the duty free chocolates and instead invest on these, they are simply delicious. If you are worrying about the weight, you can easily find a lot of Baklawa and Dates stores at the airport and shop here after checking in.
These are my top picks for Dubai, feel free to add in the list or share your experience with me in the comment section. 🙂
Check out this review of Traders Hotel.
Organic products are a rage in today’s world. With toxic amounts of chemicals and carcinogens present in our everyday products, organic products grown without a heavy use of chemicals is paramount for remaining healthy. For this, we ordered a few products from the organic company Giskaa.
Giskaa has a soothing, minimalistic look which is completely at ease for even a caveman. But the most essential part about Giskaa is that they are bringing together an exclusive collection of natural and eco-friendly products not just from Northeast India but from across the country. Rare items and foods have been brought together in one place allowing people all over India to reach out to them. There is a plethora of options ranging from clothing to beauty to food. Let us start with a few of the beauty products we ordered. One of the most endearing parts of the website is the availability to chat with either an expert or with customer care at a moment’s notice. There are a range of face wash, body gels and shampoos which you can select from. But it’s the use of different types of essential oils which impress us the most.
Lifestyle and Beauty Products(Sandals)
Peppermint and Aloe Vera are two essential commodities for summer. The soothing nature of Aloe Vera gives a skin relief from the burning rays of sun outside while peppermint gives the skin a fresh, sprightly feel. Priced at INR 200, we bought two handmade soaps to keep some company in these summer months.
Sandalwood is something that my mother has been using for years. Lusting after the Mysore Sandal soap, she has taken quite a few rounds of markets of Yusuf Sarai and INA in Delhi. But with the original company decreasing productions, it has become one of the rarer products to be found. A Sandalwood Body Wash for mom is the perfect Birthday gift for her.
Although the females in the gang have their beauty care up to date, it is the men who suffer the most in the summers. With their thicker skin and beard, the sun plays a havoc on it. A after shave gel with aloe vera, tea tree oil and Vitamin E helps protect against all the open cuts of the freshly mowed hair against the sweat.
These summers, Moroccan Argan Nut Oil has become our favourite. The Argan Nut Oil is rich in Vitamin E, an essential nutrient for hair growth, so a combo pack of Shampoo and Hair Oil is godsend.
Let’s move to the food now. Breakfasts are seeing a sea of change today. The highly glycemic corn flakes is slowly being replaced with superfoods that pack a truckload of nutrients in very small quantities. You can select your own products that make for a perfect, healthy bowl of muesli. Oat Flakes are a great source of Vitamin B1, Iron, Proteins and dietary fibres. A range of pre packed muesli is also available in the form of strawberry and cranberry.
The North East prides itself on it’s range of chillies and non-vegetarian dishes which are rarely found in other regions. We weren’t let this option go as we grabbed onto the hottest of them all, the Bhoot Jholakia. The former no.1 on the Scoville Scale, the Bhoot Jholakia flakes has multiple uses besides the traditional use of putting it in curries for that extra kick. You can pretty much substitute it for your regular chilli and feel the difference. But it’s the pickles we were lusting after for a long time. We fell in love with the non-vegetarian pickles on our first visit to Meghalaya and Assam. But the crux of the problem was that only two regions of India actively made these pickles, the other being Kerala. A whole range of pickles ranging from fish, seafood all the way to chicken and pork made us superbly happy.
So, now you don’t have to meander around for organic stuff in this sweltering heat, check into Giskaa.
Father’s Day is around the corner (19th June i.e. this Sunday) and my phone is buzzing with regulars asking how to surprise both their “Father” and “Father-in-law”. In this blog, I’ll be covering some easy DIY’s and for the “lazy squad”, some innovative gifting options.
Summers are here and it’s going to be an assault on our skin. Although the ladies do manage to take impeccable care of their skin, it’s the men who suffer the most. The heat, the sweat, the dust and the beard takes a toll on your hair and skin. To counter this, we decide to order a few essentials from the newly opened The Man Company.
The Man Company website has a rugged, minimalistic look which is completely at ease for caveman. Although the website has some issues opening up on the desktop, it works perfectly on the mobile. There are options for all the products, a few combos and a blog which puts some grooming tip and tricks. There are a range of face wash, body gels and shampoos which you can select from. But it’s the use of different types of essential oils which impress us the most. There’s Lemon Oil, Moroccan Argan Oil along with Coffee Bean and Mint.
We select The Sturdy Trio(INR 1197) for ourselves which has a Ginger and Lime Body Wash, a Coffee Bean and Pachauli Face Wash and a Moroccan Argan Oil Shampoo. The Checkout has small issues which require some fixing as usage of gift coupons makes free delivery impossible. The order is confirmed on phone by next day and the package is delivered by Day 4. A classic, rugged wooden box houses the products which is something that you’ll really love. A small insight why these products are extremely essential in your kit this summer.
The Ginger and Lime Body Wash combines the antiseptic effects of Ginger and Lime, a perfect answer to all the sweat and bacteria that comes along with it. Coffee is an exfoliating agent and contains a lot of antioxidants. Along with the Pachouli Oil in the face wash, it helps unclog the facial pores and reduce age lines. The Argan Oil Shampoo is rich in Vitamin E, an essential nutrient for hair growth.