Europe, Vacation

Paris 2017 (Part One)

Both my sisters and I concluded that Paris is our favourite European city (so far).  It’s a cliché to say Paris is romantic, but honestly, it is!  My sisters love it for the food, but I love it for the shopping.  The last time I went to Paris, I focused more on food and neglected to shop.  I know, hard to believe eh?  A shopaholic like me, LOL!  But this time, I managed to go to stores I haven’t been last time and bought some items I have been eyeing for a long time.

We stayed at Hotel L’Antoine.  The interior is designed by the famous fashion designer,  Christain Lacroix.

Look how cool the door is.  Do you like it?

Interesting design, isn’t it?
I love taking pics of random strangers.  When I saw this girl, she just screams Parisian to me.  Don’t you think?
Read More

family, holidays

Madrid 2017 (Part Two)

We spent a short three day trip to Madrid.  I wouldn’t mind adding one more day but we had two more cities to explore.  If I had more time, I would visit their museums.  Madrid is a vibrant city with friendly people.  Apparently, it is a sunny city (over 300 days of sunshine per year), so it’s perfect for those who loves hot weather or those who suffers from SAD.  I’m definitely the former.

No, we didn’t purposely co-ordinate our outfits, but it worked out fine. =)

We had dinner at Taberna El Sur.  This is our favourite Spanish restaurant.  We loved it so much we went twice within three days.  And of course, we always start dinner with sangrias.

Always down for Jamón Ibérico ham :)

Random chicken curry dish but boy was I ever happy to order this.
Read More

Lifestyle, Vacation

Madrid 2017 (Part One)

The one thing I love about Europe is that I can travel to a new country rather inexpensively and get to experience a new culture.  Each country has its own cuisines, traditions, and history.  There is so much to see and do!

Madrid is so different from London.  First off, it’s BOILING THERE, an average of 36-degree Celsius (97 Fahrenheit) a day.  We did a lot of walking but of course a lot of resting as well.  It’s a very clean city and the people are very friendly.  Uber services are quite limited (compared to London) but that was fine because most of the places we went were very accessible.

The best way to travel is on EasyJet.  Flying from London to Madrid only took 2.5 hours.  Always remember to check in online.  We forgot to and we checked in at the airport.  We were seated separately, and I almost didn’t make it on the flight.

My first impression of Madrid – hot policeman.  My sister is trying to locate our uber while I have my eyes on the cop in the back (who speaks very limited English) therefore, it was just eye candy for us. =)

Do you think this is big enough?  I think my grandma can see it too. I think it’s hilarious!

It was nice to stay at a hotel.  It feels so good to have someone make my bed every day.
Read More

Lifestyle, Vacation

Dining Experience: Hélène Darroze at the Connaught

Have you guys ever dined at a Michelin star restaurant?  Michelin stars are a rating system to grade restaurants on the quality ranging from one to three stars.  One star indicates a “very good restaurant”; two stars indicate  “excellent cuisine”; and three stars means “exceptional quality, worth the visit”.

The first time I visited a Michelin star restaurant was three years ago in San Sebastian.  You can read the post here.  Since we’re in Europe, we knew we had to try out some of the Michelin star restaurants.  There are 163 Micheline star restaurants in the world and sadly, none in Canada.

Thanks to Jeanie who chose Hélène Darroze.  Hélène Darroze is a renowned female chef who owns two Michelin restaurants.  She is also the winner of the Veuve Clicquot World’s Best Female Chef Award in 2015.  I’m elated that we were able to dine at one of her restaurants.
While walking towards the hotel, I saw a Goyard Store, so I just took a pic with it.  We don’t have this brand in Vancouver.

This prestigious hotel is more than 100 years old but it still looks luxurious.

The interior is sophisticated with beautiful wood panelling, plush furnishings, and an intimate vibe.

Read More

Lifestyle, Vacation

London 2017 (Part Two)

This is my second time to London.  The first time I went with my husband was back in 2001.  I don’t remember exactly where we went, except it was raining a lot.  Also, we were on a tour so we went to all the touristy places but I don’t remember if I had a good meal then.  You would know how it feels if any of you have been on a tour especially a Chinese tour, which means we ate a lot of Chinese food. =)

This is the famous Big Ben, which is actually the nickname of the Great Bell inside Westminster’s iconic clock tower.

Westminster Abbey – beautiful Gothic-style Church also where Prince William and Kate Middleton got married.

The iconic red telephone booth – Did you know that it’s actually very filthy inside?  I’m pretty sure no one uses them anymore.

Buckingham Palace – As you can tell, both my sisters are 2 inches taller than me.  Why is the oldest sibling always the shortest? ;)
Read More