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Tuesday, 24 June 2014

Today`s Outfit: The Perfect Midi Dress for Summer

summer midi dress
summer midi dress
perfect midi dress
perfect midi dress for summer
perfect summer midi dress
(Midi dress from Tokyo, Zara ivory flats, Michael Kors watch, bag from Thailand, jeans jacket from Hong Kong)

A very multicultural outfit which reflects both my love for travel and shopping and what`s better than doing them both at the same time?! I found this pretty midi dress somewhere on the backstreets of Tokyo and I love how flowy and light it feels, making it perfect for hot summer days. And to add to that it has the cutest little Eiffel towers as a print oh la la! We`ve had some pretty good weather in London recently so I`m trying to take advantage of it by spending as much time as possible in the sunshine. I`ve also recently rediscovered my love for badminton! I haven`t played it since I was like 14 but now I`m back in the game and I`m actually pretty good at it, if I can say so myself. Managed to kick my boyfriend`s ass so that`s a win I`ll be sure to constantly remember him, especially in front of other people. Hey what`s love if not trying to always publicly embarrass each other? 

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Sunday, 22 June 2014

Facebook Ads for your blog? Worth it or not?

facebook ads for blog

The effectiveness of Facebook ads for a brand`s official Facebook page has been debated for quite a while now. The ads can start for as little as $5 per day and you can set filters so you can target the audience you`re most interested in.  Most brands use the Facebook ads as well as small and big bloggers.  Growing your audience on any social channel for your blog is not an easy thing so bloggers have learnt to utilize the social tools smartly. Many see Facebook ads negative, personally I think if you see your blog as a business then as any business it needs investment to grow and pretty much most of the fashion or beauty blogs you see that have half of million of Likes have used ads at some point. If you see your blog more as a hobby then you probably do not need to invest money in ads and you can just let it grow organically. 

The most common benefits that come with using Facebook ads for your blog are:

Higher numbers of Facebook followers means higher chances of organic followers in future - this very much has to do with the way we humans perceive success. People assume that a blog with high number of followers must be a good blog so they start following as well. It is obviously quite a flawed conception, number of followers has nothing to do with quality, but unfortunately it`s still a trap we tend to fall into. Bloggers will use ads to grow their overall numbers so they can attract new organic followers in the future.

Bigger opportunities when working with brands - all brands or PR agencies nowadays will look for a blog`s stats before they engage with them in campaigns and obviously the main people they want to work with are the ones with the largest communities which in return can benefit their client. Building up an initial base can be great when you`re just starting a blog and you want to start working with brands.

Higher engagement rate - with $5-$10 per day you`re probably not gonna get a very targeted audience and more just an increase in numbers but even among those people you`re still gonna get a few more people Liking, sharing or commenting on your posts which means your posts will get a higher reach.

Increase in traffic to your blog & increase in followers on your other channels (e.g. Twitter & Bloglovin`) - once your numbers will start growing, as long as you keep updating your Facebook page with your new blog posts you should be able to see some of those people going onto your blog and potentially subscribing to your blog on other channels as well. Again it is important to remember that if you have 2,000 Facebook Likes on your page from ads then you aren`t really gonna get as much traffic to your blog as you would get if you had 2,000 people that have liked your page organically.

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Saturday, 21 June 2014

Ceviche Restaurant Review

Peruvian cuisine is starting to pick up in London although it is still considered a novelty which I guess is one of the main reasons why places like Ceviche and Lima are so popular now. I`m a big fan of dinners that consist of a lot of small dishes  as you get to taste so much more and it`s also much easier for chefs to experiment and come up with delicious innovations. 
ceviche restaurant review
King fish with kiwi and blood orange (15/20) was a favourite. The fish was super fresh and it went really well with the orange. Very refreshing for a summer dinner.
ceviche king fish
Razor clams with salsa and salmon roe (16/20) another yummy dish that my partner and I were fighting over.
ceviche razor clams
Grilled chicken skewers (13/20) were good but since my trip to Japan and experiencing yakitori my standards for chicken skewers have rocketed.
ceviche chicken skewers
Hot ceviche (13/20) was good but didn`t find it as interesting as the other dishes.
hot ceviche review
Wanton fritters with chicken (13/20) make great nibbles.
ceviche wonton fritters
Heritage tomato salad (15/20)
ceviche salad
ceviche restaurant review

Ceviche on Urbanspoon
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Thursday, 19 June 2014

Travel in Style: Shangri La Tokyo Hotel Review


 1. The Room (19/20)
We`ve stayed in a double room and it was surprisingly large considering we were in one of the most expensive cities in the world. The Japanese have such a high attention to detail that it really felt like they thought of everything in terms of amenities! But my favourite part must have been the bed (it was perfect!) and the high tech toilet (a must if you`re in Japan). I really don`t know how can I go back to the standard, boring European toilets now.
shangri la tokyo hotel review
shangri la tokyo hotel review
shangri la tokyo
The view from our room
shangri la tokyo room
shangri la tokyo room
shangri la hotel review
 All these buttons my bum didn`t even know it needed!shangri la tokyo

2. The breakfast & other dining options (16/20)
Breakfast is the most important part of a hotel stay for me. I would rather have a poor room than a poor breakfast. Fortunately I got a fantastic room and a fantastic breakfast at the Shangri La. The venue in which we had breakfast was very elegant with a great view over the city. There was a good variety of dishes and everything was of very high quality.
In terms of other dining options we also tried their Italian restaurant called Piacere but weren`t so impressed by it.
shangri la tokyo breakfast
shangri la tokyo breakfast
shangri la tokyo breakfast review
shangri la tokyo hotel review
shangri la tokyo hotel review
shangri la tokyo
best breakfast in tokyo
best breakfast in tokyo
best breakfast in tokyo
tokyo hotel breakfast
3. The pool, spa & fitness facilities (15/20)
The spa was lovely and I especially enjoyed the pool which was perfect for laps. For fitness and other spa facilities there weren`t that many options but I guess this is quite common with city hotels. The use of the pool & fitness facilities was free but the massages at the spa were very high priced. If you`re looking for a massage you`re better off going downstairs to one of the places in Tokyo Stations.
shangri la tokyo pool
shangri la tokyo spa

4. Location (15/20)
The Shangri La is conveniently situated just right near Tokyo Station which makes the journeys to other Tokyo areas or to the airports so much easier.
The hotel is right in the centre of the business area of Tokyo and although you have plenty of dining options around it is still more an area where business people hang out after work. We didn`t really mind this as the proximity to the metro station made it quite easy to get around the city.

Room (19/20)
Breakfast & other dining options (16/20)
Pool, spa, & fitness facilities (15/20)
Other facilities (18/20)
Service & atmosphere (18/20)
Location (15/20)

Overall rating: 17/ 20
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Tuesday, 17 June 2014

Pick Your Own- Day at the Farm

Sunday morning we said good bye to London and went for a drive at a farm just outside the city in Esher to pick some vegetables and fruits. The concept of "pick your own" is completely new to me and at first I couldn`t believe this is actually a thing. Growing up in Romania the countryside and fresh fruits and vegetables markets are everywhere so no one really gets that excited about it, but since I moved to London I`ve realised how lucky I was. Farmers markets are usually only held in weekends and only in few places and adding to that the fact that prices are usually much higher people prefer buying veggies from the supermarket. Recently however there has been an increase in demand for bringing back the old school freshness which has led to the opening of more farmers markets, more organic eating places, and more farms where you can pick your own veggies to give those that don`t have this luxury the chance to experience a bit of farm life at least for a few hours. The farm we visited is called Garsons and is just 40 mins away from our house by car. We picked up loads of veggies and fruits including strawberries and raspberries all of which were delicious. The funniest thing though was seeing these cute little kids with raspberries all over their faces that looked like they`re having an amazing time. 
pick your own farm
pick your own farm
pick your own farm
farm outfitpick your own farm
farm outfit
countryside outfit
countryside outfit
countryside farm
countryside farm

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