Style. Beauty. Lifestyle. Travel

Auckland & the BEST Fish Sliders

Auckland is New Zealand's largest and most populous area. Whilst we were there, we saw a lot of students and lots of Asian food somehow. Perhaps, most of the schools were near where we were staying at that night (which was a crappy hotel that I really do not recommend). Thankfully, that was the only room that I wasn't really fond of the entire trip!

Beside the Auckland Art Gallery by Toi O Tamaki (worth a visit!) sits Myers Park. We caught sight of this flowering tree that reminded me a lot of Sakuras which I have yet to personally witness in Japan. 

By the power of Google and Yelp, we decided to have our first meal of our trip at Depot. The restaurant is helmed by Chef Al Brown and I kid you not, you HAVE TO COME HERE just to sink your teeth into their in-house fish sliders.

The sliders usually come in three's but the waitress was so smart and asked us if we wanted four instead so that we don't have to fight over the last one. BOY, WAS SHE RIGHT ABOUT THAT. These are Snapper sliders w pickled lemon mayo and watercress. They were seriously the best damn fish sliders I've ever had. Fluffy buns, succulent fish, amazing sauce. (and yes, I did just copy all of that from my Instagram post haha)

Honestly never did rave about a fish slider so much before. I went into a bookstore and found a book by him and took a photo of his recipe HEHE. Gonna try recreating this some time for sure.

Also worth mentioning is this wood-roasted bone marrow dish that came with a medley of parsley, capers and shallots. YUM in my TUM.

I don't really know why do Singaporeans like us get so excited over the sights of cows and sheep and basically, FARM ANIMALS. Not an everyday sight back home so excuse the over-excitement. :D

We were supposed to be looking for Cornwall Creamery but it was located quite deep in the park and we didn't have much time to spare so we decided to settle for breakfast at Cornwall Park Cafe. Could spot it a mile away from the number of people gathered outside at the Al Fresco area. 

Their Big Breakfast is MASSIVE so order to share with you and your lover. Those tomatoes on the vine though, are the bomb!


First Skydiving Experience

If there was something that I've wanted to tick off my Bucket List for a really long time.. it's definitely SKY-DIVING! I can't believe how long I've waited for this moment to arrive! Right from the get-go, I already knew I wanted to experience my virgin jump in the beautiful land of New Zealand. As some of you may have known, I just did an EPIC NZ trip with my bf. I am so happy with how the whole trip went, save for some minor hiccups here and there, some random squabbles between us, but ALL IS GOOD!! The food, the scenery, the adventures and the squishy company more than made up for everything that went wrong.

There are a quite a few companies that can cater to your skydiving experience in New Zealand, but we have chosen to go with NZone and do our jump in Queenstown. I HIGHLY recommend NZone Skydiving if you are ever thinking of making a jump. They are highly professional and all the safety measures are in place to make you feel... well... extremely safe so that your heart doesn't beat even faster than it already is prior to the jump!

On the day that we were scheduled to jump, the weather was pretty terrible and I wasn't surprised at all to hear from the lady at the counter that the jump (for that timing) has been cancelled. It was most likely cancelled for the entire day cos it was just really rainy and windy that day.

Needless to say, I was very bummed out by it. They offered to switch the jump timing for us and I immediately jumped at the mention of the earliest jump the next day, which we had to report at 630am. It was SO EARLY but I wasn't taking any chances! Luckily for us, the weather was pretty awesome the next day. (:

You will first be ushered into a briefing room to decide if you wanted to grab photos/videos for your jump at an additional cost that you pay after your jump. In case you're wondering, I purchased the handicam Go-Pro photos and videos for an additional $189NZD. A vehicle will pick you up and drive you to the NZone drop zone which is actually located really near Jack's Point, a 20min drive away from Shotover Street. 

Your tandem diver will introduce himself to you and guide you through all the safety features and how exactly you are going to go through the jump. Before you know it, you are boarding the plane with everyone else and flying all the way up!

The rest is history.

It was such a once in a lifetime experience!

Honestly, the scariest part was witnessing how high the plane went. You don't really have time to think properly and before you know it, you are out of the plane and floating in mid-air. All I can say is, you will never know how it feels like until you've experienced it. BE BRAVE!


KFC Cake

Move over All fudge chocolate cakes!
I have found the next best alternative to a sinful birthday cake - a KFC cake!!
(I mean, what could be better than indulging in heaps of fried chicken on a sinful day with the company of your best friends right?)

Simply order a whole box of fried chicken, arrange them in a creative manner atop a cake stand or two, throw on some cake toppers and fairy lights around (if you fancy) and there you have it; your very own Fried Chicken Cake.

Let me know if you have attempted this as well and I can rest assure you that it is going to be FINGER-LICKIN' GOOD. (:


Looksee Looksee

On days where I'm not busy running errands and meeting clients, I generally like to laze around and visit spots that allow me to wind down and chill to the max. I recently chanced upon this gorgeous space by The Lo & Behold Group and A.Muse Projects. It is a a reading room that serves up specialty tea and I decided to bring my other half along on this tea-tasting experience. 

The decor is splendid, adorned with pastel colours all around and is definitely a winning match with my favourite Rebecca Minkoff bag. It houses a sofa area with natural light pouring in as well as seats along the wall with cushions and tables for your tea and reading pleasure. The selection of books are also mostly related to food, beverages and lifestyle - some of which I personally own and keep at home as my babies.

Their Tea Salon serves up new and exciting teas every month alongside tea and food pairings. For the month of October, they are serving up Tea with Kue Lapis. (please don't remind me the fact that for every slice of Kue Lapis I eat, I probably have to climb a flight of 100 stairs to burn off those calories !) We tried the Lemon Jasmine Bi Luo Chun and opted for the Dark Chocolate Mocha Tea (coffee-inspired) so as to get the best of both worlds - one being a light floral tea; and the other, heavier with more character. I enjoyed both greatly.

Ps. Looksee Looksee operates on a tip basis!
(please tip them based on how much you would pay for a specialty tea outside, it is basic courtesy)

Good to know:
They do not have a restroom, so I had to scoot off to a nearby hostel to use theirs instead. Luckily, they were very kind and friendly (:

Looksee Looksee
267 Beach Road
Singapore 199545
Tel: +65 6338 8035
Mon - Fri 10am to 6pm
Sat 1pm to 5pm


The Poke Life

If you like raw fish on rice, you will definitely be a big fan of Poke. (And no, I don't mean Pokemon, I mean Poke - the healthy dish that originated from Hawaii and is slowly taking over Singapore as well). This honestly reminds me a lot of a good old Chirashi don. Think diced cubes of marinated raw fish atop of rice and topped with vegetables. 

The way that Poke bowls differ from a Chirashi don lies in their sides and add-ons. Whilst a standard Chirashi will come garnished with Japanese sides like ikura, tamago and wasabi, Poke bowls offer your standard variety of cherry tomatoes, avocado and are usually topped with diced pineapples as well, a fruit that Hawaii is famous for. Also, instead of offering a wider spread of raw fish, Poke bowls usually come served mainly in marinated Salmon and Tuna. 

Recently, I had a bowl of delicious Poke from Aloha Poke located along Amoy Street and I like the fact that they give us the an option for brown rice. I mean, if you're trying to be healthy, might as well be healthy all the way through, no? Besides, I'm starting to be accustomed to eating brown rice and I'm much preferring it to white on most days. 

Have you caught on to the Poke trend yet?
If yes, let me know what are your favourite Poke joints! Remember - sharing is caring. Would love to hear from you all.


The Best Day in Santorini

Exactly a year ago from now, I planned a surprise proposal for one of my best friends together with her now fiance. The proposal was at Santorini, which to me, is one of the prettiest places for tourists and couples to visit. The whole island is built in pristine blue and white and not to forget that the place is extremely clean. Definitely a paradise destination on Earth. 

When we were there, I suggested for us to take a private yacht out one day just to explore the seas and I'm so glad that we did that! Let's just say that I've no qualms with being the third-wheel and lol. The receptionist at our lovely villa waited for us to return from dinner the night before (and we were back really late) so that she can confirm our yacht tour the next day. It was one of her contacts and I'm so glad she recommended us to them! 

Check them out at Santorini Exclusive Sailing!

Needless to say, we were really excited for a day out at sea but were extremely under-prepared when it came to sunblock. Note to self: Always lather yourself with loads of SPF when you're out at sea!

We boarded at the base of Ammoudi Bay and you can expect loads of restaurants selling seafood there. They even have octopus air-drying on vines along the bay. What a sight! We didn't end up having a meal there but I'm happy to say that the privately-cooked meal we had on board was pretty splendid as well.

Here's our captain Vaios and Emilio in the background, his lovely assistant and chef for the day. Taking a private yacht out is extremely worth it because they restrict the number of people on board, making your experience that much more personal and intimate. We had another two ladies with us who were also staying at our villa and they were very nice and friendly. 

Free flow drinks were offered on board and that includes wine. The one thing that I'm super amazed about is that there is wifi on board the yacht and the wifi is SUPER CRAZY FAST! It is even faster than that in the villa and I was literally face-timing my mom and my colleagues whilst cruising along in the sea. It happened to be a Monday that day and this is our version of Monday Blues. Blue skies and blue seas. (:

Very happy campers making the most of our time on the yacht obviously.

Our captain took us around and we had the opportunity to take a dip in the waters and OMG, just check out at how blue the water is! I have never seen water this clear and blue before (evidently in our Gopro videos that I am going to link right below this post)!

We also got to swim in geothermal waters where the water is not as blue and we got hit with bouts of hot and cold water every second. It was a very strange and weird sensation but something worth doing. If you are not a good swimmer, the yacht also offers you floats and I'm pretty sure there are life-jackets on board if you requested for one.

We were presented with a toast of Vinsanto (a traditional Greek wine) after our first short swim and a seafood feast after our second dip into the waters.

Look at all the food! Everything was so fresh and delicious and I definitely wasn't expecting such a great feast to be honest. I would already be happy if they provided us with some light bites, but THIS, was beyond amazing.

The yacht also have meters telling us the speed at which it is cruising at and the distance from it to the water bed. It was pretty cool to learn about these things and the captain was really happy to share with us about his yacht and the islands around us along the cruise.

The whole cruise lasted about 7-8 hours and it was just the best day out at sea!
Here's their website if you're interested.

Cheers to many more lovely days ahead!

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