TRAVEL BLOG

paradises

Fashion for Christmas

It’s that time of year again… Christmas! And with Christmas not only comes presents, puddings and punch but also Christmas parties! Whether it be on the harbour in a fabulous yacht, afternoon cocktails in a swanky bar or a casual laid back BBQ here are some great glam ideas that will get you out the door fast and into the soiree season looking sexy, fabulous and fearless!

1. Overdress rather than Underdress

That’s right you heard me! It’s the Christmas season so lets get merry! Invest in a plain coloured kaftan and dress it up with hot red or pink lips with a bright oversize clutch and sexy wedges for the comfort yet effortlessly chic factor. If you want to dress it down but still look glamourous opt for a crochet mini dress like the one in the pic and team it with a fun tote bag and sandals.

2. Throw on a coverup!

If you’re over wearing the standard ‘party’ dress this season and want to try something different, throw a maxi kaftan on over the top!  Comfortable yet chic, maxi Kaftans can be dressed up or down and are just perfect for a day to night look.  Experiment with different length options, and flats or heels both work with this look.

3. Wear a bikini confidently

Between the christmas pud, champagne and cheese sometimes strolling around in a bikini seems somewhat daunting but please don’t go for the oversize t-shirt! Cover up and look effortless with a full length robe. Crochet, Silk, print or sheer, robes can be worn casually at the beach or dressed up with heels and jewels by the resort side pool.

So this christmas be bold and experiment with colours – Don’t be boring and head straight to your ‘red and greens’ try out turquoises, greens and bright whites – And most importantly wear them with confidence!

Have a safe and sexy Christmas and New Years all!

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Much love

Lisa Maree xxxxx

kellytang rachamanka

Chiang Mai Royale

Within the old city of Chiang Mai, lies Rachamankha, a 25 room and suite property that very well compasses the rich history of Chiang Mai. The distinctive architecture is strongly inspired by the eleventh centuries B.C, which makes Rachamankha, exudes old world charm and character.

Getting to the hotel from the airport is very easy. Just head out to the taxi stand and there’s a booth where all the drivers congregates and someone will be there to help you get a taxi. Don’t worry about touting, prices are fixed prior you get on a cab.

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Check in was a breeze. We stayed in a Courtyard Superior which was on the second level of the property. Room is furnished with strong emphasis on wood and simplicity. The high ceiling was a plus that made the room look spacious.

Around the property, there are places where you can simply sit and enjoy a book or even a cup of tea while you take in the serenity of the surroundings. Didn’t bring a book for your trip? Just hop over to the library where it houses over 2,000 books ranging from history, art to architecture. The library was such a tranquil place that I even spent a few house in there, slipping my coffee while tapping away on my laptop.

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You can either dine in the restaurant proper or al fresco at the patio. Should the weather permit, choose the latter. The patio is set within an intimate area of concrete walls and perfectly manicured potted topiary. Ideal for a romantic dinner after an evening stroll, exploring the little nooks of the property. The restaurant serves traditional dishes that celebrates the cultures of the Lanna, Burmese and Shan cuisines.

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There are many points of attractions that you can visit whilst in Chiang Mai. Just round the corner, there are four notable temples within walking distance. Looking for something more historical? Head over to the tour counter, located right in front of the restaurant and seek for some recommendations.

Transportations are aplenty within the old and new city of Chiang Mai. I love taking the red tuk tuks as it’s fast and definitely low priced. A trip into the new city starts from just 10 BAHT.

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Rachamankha is definitely a place to consider if you are in the mood for historical Northern Thai culture or just seeking a residential living rather than a hotel stay.

paradises

Yacht Weather (Boat Fashion do’s and don’ts)

With summer fast approaching and the weather finally showing some signs of Spring I’ve decided to write a little blog about my recent experiences during the European Summer of 2014, spending most of my free time cruising on a Yacht, one quickly learns the Fashion do’s and don’ts of yacht life.

A little safety first: Cocktails, sunscreen and a boat deck can be an accident waiting to happen. Get travel insurance! It’s a must. Breaking an ankle on a remote island is not the ideal way to spend your vacation. Also keep a little first aid pack on board, little cuts and scrapes are all a part of Yacht living.

First of all, don’t bother with the Jimmy Choo’s and Louboutin’s. No shoes required on board, well actually that’s the general rule….no shoes on boats, so as you can understand, my suitcase size was reduced significantly when I realised that all the high heels could be removed, to be honest, I did leave one pair for evenings out on shore….just in case, although with the quaint Islands and Marinas we frequented, high heels are absolutely not needed, a few pairs of beautiful summer flat sandals is all you’ll need.

Daily living consists of wearing a bikini with a cover up/kaftan. I can absolutely advise that majority of your suitcase should contain swimwear, bikini’s and one pieces as well as an array of kaftan and coverups. Wearing a kaftan over your swimwear as a rule adds sophistication and sexiness, I believe that showing a little less definitely creates more interest than revealing everything. Ladies lets leave something to the imagination. This rule crosses over to pool parties and beach life. A beautiful long open coverup robe adds a sense of style to your look.

At night you might stop in a small bay or a marina and go ashore for dinner, Summer outfits for nights out can be simple and sexy with the gorgeous tan that is rapidly growing from your days on board. Do wear a pop colour, mix it with navy or white to create your perfect look. Don’t wear all black long sleeves, pants or skirts. Black in Summer is just  depressing. Do wear a sexy piece out at night but avoid super tight mini skirts or tank tops, guys like a little mystery, it’s intriguing. Leggings are out, they are not real pants and it’s summer, instead try a maxi dress and some jewelled summer sandals or brightly coloured wedges. And finally our biggest summer shoe no-no, DON’T wear black boots, uggs, crocs (NEVER) or clogs, it’s summer, you’re on a yacht and you are a stylish sophisticated woman.

With these rules in mind, enjoy your summer and your yachting!

indonesia karma resorts

Hotels with the best pool in Bali

The cold season is slowly breezing in but there are still places that provides almost 365 days of pure summer heat.  Here are 3 of the best swimming pools we have seen in Bali that guarantees a splashing good time!

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With a pool that’s perched on a cliff top of an elevated limestone peninsula, you know the view would be exceptional. Karma Kandara is an award-winning luxury resort that comprises of 54 private pool villas. Not only do you get your own private pool, you also get access to their main pool (pictured above). Rates start from USD 1140 per night.

 

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Nestled within 14 hectares of tropical manicured garden, InterContinental Bali Resort offers premium accommodations in three unique levels of accommodation: Resort Classic, Singaraja and Club InterContinental. With its six swimming pools, you are never short of choices. Opt for a night in their Club Room and get access to the Club Intercontinental Pool where complimentary light refreshments are served all day.  Rates start from USD 320 per night.

 

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From its spectacular saline water turquoise Lagoon to its Main Pool with two Jacuzzis, St Regis Bali Resort offers multiple options for refreshing dips. Don’t miss out on getting a few treatments done at the Aqua-Vitale Pool at Remède Spa where sheer pleasure is delivered at its best. Rates start from USD 616 per night.

 

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French Kisses

Debuting a new direction for Spring 2014, ‘French Kisses’ is my first installment of super-sexy collection of ready to wear, statement pieces.

Presenting a modern and sexy take on the classic Alannah Hill styling. It is inspired by the essence of Parisian life and is a romantic introduction to spring and the thrill of race season. Key colours are navy, soft pink and black, worn back with florals, stripes and polka dots.  The range also includes luxurious laces, intricate beading and ladylike silhouettes of the 1950s and 60s.

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My latest looks from Alannah Hill Spring 2014 collection will be available in Alannah Hill boutiques, David Jones and online at alannahhill.com.au.

paradises

The Fiji Beach Resort & Spa

FIJI.
Story and photos by Kelly Tang

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The resort beach

Denarau Island is situated on the main island of Viti Levu in Fiji and is the largest integrated resort complex in the South West Pacific. The area consists of eight resorts and residential properties and is in close proximity to Nadi airport (less than 10kms) and Port Denarau Marina, which is the gateway to Nadi Bay and the magnificent Mamanuca and Yasawa Islands.

Resorts operating on Denarau Island include the Sheraton Denarau Villas, Sheraton Fiji Resort, Westin, The Fiji Beach Resort & Spa, Sofital, Raddissson Blu, The Wyndham and The Terraces Resorts.

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Beautiful Fijian sunset

This month’s featured resort is:

The Fiji Beach Resort & Spa (managed by Hilton)

This resort is set on 1.5 km of beach and is actually a small village in itself! Perfectly located for holiday makers to have everything at their fingertips including: various restaurants, café, shops, kids club, spa, tennis courts, water sports activities such as parasailing, jet ski riding, banana boat rides and kayaking, snorkeling and also scuba diving (organized via the front desk).

The beach is expansive but not the ideal swimming beach for me. Blue water and white sand is what I prefer but I am a little spoilt.

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Adult only pool

To make up for the lack of a great swimming beach the resort has a lovely palm lined pool complex, which includes an adult only pool. Much of our time was spent lounging here. The swimming complex offers several separate pools so kids can go nuts in their own areas without sending the book readers and sunbathers bonkers.

You need not leave the confines of this sprawling property and instead choose to spend the major part of the day by the pool and later in the afternoon enjoy Fiji’s stunning sunsets while sipping cocktails on one of the resort’s comfortable outdoor settings.

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One of the many outdoor settings

The resort offers many food options to appease all palates from sit down a la carte restaurants to takeaway options. We kept going back for their famous pizza they made at the café and would take it away and enjoy on our private balcony overlooking the ocean.

All the Denarau Island’s resorts can be accessed along a walking path that follows the coast and is an ideal walking track for those that want to shake off those buffet calories.

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Wedding Chapel

The marina is only a short drive from the resort and offers a range of cool, hip restaurants and bars and is a great option for a night out. I can highly recommend the ribs and corncob salad from the Denarau Marina Hard Rock Café. But be warned, if a ‘Village People’ song comes on while you’re dining then be prepared to get up and jive!

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Romantic dinners and special occasion specialists

For families wanting to entertain the kids or need a break, a Kids Club is available and offers a large range of activities to keep them endlessly entertained.

On the other hand, you can indulge in a massage overlooking the sea or choose from an array of treatments at the award-winning Pevonia Concept Spa.

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Part of the 1.5 kms of beach

If you feel the urge to discover all Fiji has to offer then close by is the Denarau Marina, which is where you can board a vessel and in a short time you’ll be island hopping and day tripping to some of Fiji’s finest islands.

A highlight for me was an afternoon at the renowned Denarau Golf course. The course is located just five minutes away and is a sensational 18-hole championship golf course and it’s here I lost a couple, a few, ok I lost six balls scored an amazing birdie a lucky par and other holes I will not mention.

The friendliness of the local Fijians and their warmth and calm nature has left a lasting impression on me. I’m certain there is not a friendlier race in the world! Smiles and ‘bulas’ are mandatory.

BULA VINAKA!!

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Tranquil Fiji
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ALANNAH HILL WINTER COLLECTION

“To all my paradisesonline.com regulars and guests. Here is my winter collection for all you women who are travelling to your favourite Asian or Pacific paradises holiday destination and would like to look and feel fabulous chic and cool”

Happy holidays…Alannah

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VICTORIA The Emporium Shopping Centre +613 9671 3987

 

Melbourne Central Shopping Centre +613 9639 6399

 

533 Chapel Street South Yarra +613 9826 2755

 

Chadstone Shopping Centre +613 9569 7566

 

Doncaster Westfield Shopping Centre +613 9855 9666

 

Highpoint Shopping Centre +613 9317 3398

 

David Jones-Chadstone +613 8531 4392

 

David Jones-Doncaster +613 9848 1542

 

David Jones-Bourke St +613 9650 1052

 

David Jones-The Glen +613 9518 2921

 

David Jones-Highpoint +613 9317 8437

 

SOUTH AUSTRALIA 269-271 Rundle Street +618 8215 0477

 

David Jones- Rundle Mall +618 8227 0459

 

BOUTIQUES & STOCKISTS

 

NEW SOUTH WALES 118-120 Oxford Street Paddington +612 9380 9147

 

Bondi Junction Westfield Shopping Centre +612 9389 3066

 

Chatswood Chase Shopping Centre +612 9413 2755

 

The Strand Arcade +612 9221 1251

 

David Jones-Elizabeth Street +612 9283 6424

 

David Jones-Bondi Junction +612 9387 2939

 

David Jones-Chatswood Chase +612 9844 4047

 

David Jones-Burwood +612 8746 1600

 

David Jones-Castle Hill +612 9842 5233

 

David Jones-Kotara +612 4923 2440

 

David Jones-Hornsby Westfield +612 9472 3700

 

David Jones-Parramatta +612 9841 3555

 

WESTERN AUSTRALIA Wesley Quarter +618 9481 7766

 

Claremont Quarter +618 9284 5679

 

David Jones-Perth +618 9325 7236

 

David Jones-Garden City +618 9364 3728

 

David Jones-Karrinyup +618 9445 3743

 

QUEENSLAND Queens Plaza +617 3012 9908

 

David Jones-Queens Plaza +617 3243 9161

 

David Jones-Robina +617 5585 2982

 

David Jones-Garden City +617 3243 9533

 

David Jones-Chermside +617 3624 1483

 

David Jones-Toowong +617 3243 9894

 

NEW ZEALAND Nuffield Street Auckland +649 9522 1171

 

ONLINE shop.alannahhill.com.au +613 8420 0388

 

www.alannahhill.com.au

 

 

 

 

kellytang_ametisvilla

Ametis Villa – Simply precious, simply wonderful

Located in the quiet town of Canngu, Ametis Villa houses just 13 villas. Each villa consists of the bedroom with a separate living area, a swimming pool and a well-equipped kitchen.

Colours adorning the property are of a neutral colour. Much reminding me of the times I’ve spent in South Africa. Shades of green and brown are seen throughout the property with wooden fixtures that emphasis on the Balinese culture.

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Each villa is assigned with your own personal butler. They are there to cater to every of your whim and fancy. From restaurant reservations to assisting of special arrangement and even chauffeuring you to and fro to Seminyak. Having a butler to spoil us was definitely a well-deserved treat!

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A selection of nuts and cookies are replenished every day and there’s even an afternoon tea you can enjoy either at the comfort of your villa or at the foyer of the hotel. Afternoon tea is a simple selection of coffee or tea and bite size snacks.

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Serving authentic, home-style Indonesia dishes is Eternal Restaurant. I must say that it serves one of the better Indonesian food that I’ve tasted. Chef gets his ingredients every day at the local market so you can expect nothing but freshness.

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You can also choose to organize a private cooking class in the midst of your own villa.

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Charm your partner with a private candlelight dinner by the beach. Food is prepared and cooked a la minute.  The management will go all out to ensure that you have the perfect experience dining by the beach. I was actually the first guest for their new set-up.

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We had such a wonderful time. We came home feeling much relaxed, rejuvenated, spoiled and penning down the next trip back to Ametis on our calendar!

Ametis Villa

Jalan Pantai Batu Bolong, Canggu – Kuta, Bali, Indonesia
Phone. +62 361 844 5567 | +62 828 9719 1888

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/ametisvillabali
Website: http://www.ametisvilla.com/

paradises

InterContinental Fiji Resort Golf & Spa

INTERCONTINENTAL FIJI GOLF RESORT & SPA HOTEL
Words & photos by Kelly Tang

With winter settling in, what better time is there to visit the sparkling jewel of the South Pacific, Fiji…

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Glorious Fijian sunsets

BULA BULA BULA!

Nowhere on planet earth will you receive a more genuine greeting than in the Fiji Islands. The renowned Fijian greeting “Bula” means, hello, welcome, have a good day and have a good everything. The Fijians say it with such enthusiasm, as if they’re welcoming a long absent friend.

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Stunning resort

This month’s featured resort is the InterContinental Fiji Golf Resort & Spa. Built on just over 14 hectares of tropical gardens the InterContinental is the sole luxury resort on Natadola Bay located on the main island of Fiji, Viti Levu.

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Breakfast restaurant

As soon as you enter this 5 star Resort & Spa and receive your first heartfelt Bula you’re enveloped with an overwhelming feeling of serenity. Beautifully appointed with artifacts and strategically placed furniture, the walk to reception is dreamlike and you know you’ve entered a very special place.

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Peaceful adult only beachside infinity pool

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Situated on the beautiful and picturesque Natadola Beach, the resort is just 5 years old and was built on some of Fiji’s most exclusive real estate. It has the longest and best natural palm fringed white sand beach on the island, which is ideal for snorkeling and surfing.

What is even more inviting is if you’re flying from Sydney or Melbourne the flight is under 4 hours and from the airport you’re only a short 45 to 60 minute drive to paradise.

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Decadent poolside seating

The InterContinental has four restaurants (ranging from fine dining to poolside snacks) a luxurious spa, an 18-hole championship golf course, four swimming pools, outdoor bars, gym, kids club and much more. No expense has been spared to ensure the Intercontinental is truly a world-class resort.

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Afternoon serenity

The resort is a haven and a perfect place to relax and unwind. To ensure a peaceful time, an adult only infinity pool overlooking the ocean awaits.

I can personally guarantee that if you arrive with any stress, then make your way to this pool as soon as you unpack and stress no more.

ACCOMMODATION

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Beautifully designed rooms

There is a wide variety of accommodation available with all rooms superbly appointed and featuring Cleopatra baths and daybeds on either a generous private terrace or balcony that takes advantage of the classic Fijian vistas and sunsets.

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Cleopatra baths feature in every room

‘InterContinental offers seasoned travellers the exclusivity of a resort within a resort.

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Club InterContinental

 

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Private plunge pool

Club InterContinental’s 1 bedroom hilltop suites are available and are 115sqm and feature luxurious spa baths and in many, private plunge pools.’

We stayed in a Beachfront view room, which were only metres from the beach.

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Beachside rooms

Outside our luxury room on a grass verge overlooking the ocean are massive day beds and once ensconced are very hard to leave.

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Romantic beachside cabanas

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At times though we had to leave to battle our way to the poolside restaurant (Toba Bar & Grill) for snacks and cocktails. Tough life!

You will fall in love with the Fijian people and their beautiful spirit and will not want to leave.

A highlight every afternoon is the daily authentic traditional cultural displays and ritual torch lighting ceremonies. This must be viewed (suggestion only) while sipping sundowner cocktails as the last of the setting sun melts into the Pacific Ocean.

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Daily authentic cultural displayDSCN6625

‘The InterContinental Fiji Golf Resort & Spa is one of the most magnificent retreats in the South Pacific and once visited you will undoubtedly become a repeat visitor”.

How to Book

www.paradisesonline.com

 

 

paradises

Hi there!

I’m currently in Europe, working on the launch of my Flagship Lisa Maree retail boutique over here, and as the weather warms up it fills my soul with pure sunshine. I’m most at home by the water, in a swimsuit and kaftan (Lisa Maree of course) and I think it’s time to depart a little swimsuit advice to you to help you achieve your best swimsuit look possible.

I love to pair my swimsuit with a flowing kaftan. For anyone who is a little self-conscious in a skimpy swimsuit, an open robe/kaftan is the way to go. It adds sophistication and a little mystery, which is always much more sexy that wearing next-to-nothing and you have the added bonus of covering those not so flattering areas.

Choose a swimsuit that suits your shape. I design most of my one pieces with the hour glass shape in mind, this shape gives the illusion of a slim but shapely figure by the cuts in the crochet and the silhouette of the styles. Our one pieces are also great for mums who don’t feel comfortable in a bikini. They are still extremely sexy but also give a sophisticated look while covering the tummy area.

Here are the main body shapes and swimsuits that will suit best, a need-to-know when searching for your perfect suit:

Athletic: Focus on feminine cuts and details. Soften your chest area with cups or padding. Pass on boy-cuts, tanks and bandeaus. Focus on showing off your lower toned half with a tie or embellishment at the hip.

Straight: Avoid bandeau tops and boy-cuts. Wear a one piece, similar to our “Down the Garden Path” crochet suit to add the illusion of curves. Enhance your bust with ruffles or padding, or go skimpy if you dare!

Pear: Wear full coverage bottoms or hipsters. Draw the eye up with cleavage and/or halter straps. Stay away from bright prints on your lower half.

Curvy: Opt for a solid colour or small print. Support your bust with a halter or moulded cup. Stay away from from a small string top and bottom.

And those are my tips for your perfect swimsuit search.

Now here I am in some of my favourite swimwear looks for the season.

 

Lisa Maree

xx

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