September 29, 2013

Ko Phi Phi, Thailand

After spending a few adventurous days in northern Thailand,
Erik and I flew down south to relax by the beach. 
We decided to stay in Krabi
a gorgeous destination on its own, and a convenient hub close to all the smaller islands around the area. 
Call it a cliche, but I had to re-read The Beach during our flight to Asia,
so of course I felt like it was necessary to visit the famous sand strips of Ko Phi Phi during one of our side-trips. 

Getting there was fairly simple -
we chartered a boat from Aonong beach, and in less than two hours, we were pulling up along the gorgeous coast. 
The location was everything I imagined... 
turquoise water, powder white beaches, and green covered lime stones protecting the inland from any intruders.
It was definitely one of the most relaxing days during our trip. 
We spent hours lounging on the shore, sipping on fruity cocktails and munching on fresh seafood. 
It was pure bliss! 
Oh what I would give to be back there right about now...


September 11, 2013

Chiang Mai, Thailand - Patara Elephant Farm

One of the main reasons we decided to go to Chiang Mai is to experience the wildlife,
and to maaaybe have a chance to ride some elephants. 
It's always been on my bucket list, and where would be a better place to do it than Thailand?
I did my research long and hard,
and after all the reviews I read, people I talked to, and pamphlets I studied,
there was one place that seemed to stand out from the rest - Patara Elephant Farm
Well, first of all, we didn't want to go to a place that was very touristy, animal care was a large concern for us, and finally, 
we wanted more than just a tour with a chance to take some photos after... 
we wanted an experience.
And that is exactly what we got. 

I will, without any hesitation, say that our day at Patara was one of the best days of my life!
As I sit back and look through some of these photos,
I can't help but smile. 
We were given an opportunity to spend the whole day with our own elephants,
Memboompsie for Erik, and Bepoo for myself. 
We fed, cleaned, rode, and even bathed these gorgeous creatures under the waterfall. 
What more can one ask for? 

I'm not gonna lie... my eyes welled up with tears when it was time to say goodbye at the end of the day.. 
If you ever plan a visit to Chiang Mai,
I highly, HIGHLY recommend spending a day at Patara. 
Bepoo and I, getting to know each other. 
A beginning to a beautiful friendship.
How sexy is my riding outfit? I know. 
Silly Bepoo!
Our yummy lunch, served in the middle of the jungle. As fresh and tropical as it gets!
Take me back!!


September 8, 2013

Bang Bang

I finally had a chance to stop by Bang Bang last week.
Can't believe it's taken me this long, 
considering this place has been making national news and all... (yes, I consider Bravo to be national news).
Either way, 
I came, I ate, and I took the very necessary pictures in the Ryan Gosling bathroom stall. 
Yes, you read that correctly - a whole stall, turned into a shrine for my boyfriend, Ryan. 
Quite the inspiration for my own home remodel, but I digress. 

I didn't expect anything less than fabulous from a collaboration between Mauricio Couturier (architect/designer/owner of Little Italy’s El Camino) and Johnny Shockey (co-founder of LED Presents and Voyeur). 
I personally haven't been to Tokyo (yet..)
but I can tell you that as soon as I walked up the "subway" staircase to enter Bang Bang, 
I felt transported to another continent.
The vibe is simply awesome. 
The food is delish too - the ingredients are all fresh,
and don't even get me started on the cocktails. 
The place serves BOWLS full of alcoholic concoctions. 
Make sure you stop by during happy hour to enjoy them for half off!
526 Market St.
Gaslamp, San Diego


September 2, 2013

Chiang Mai, Thailand

Oh Chiang Mai... you've forever captured my heart. 
Perhaps our favorite destination of our latest international trip,
this enchanting city of Northern Thailand is truly a cultural darling. 

Way more mellow than the hustling and bustling Bangkok,
Chiang Mai offers the perfect combination of metropolis and relaxation. 
On any given day you can find yourself riding elephants, playing with tigers, chatting with monks or racing around the tiny streets on a scooter. 
Although we were able to see majority of the city in one day,
thanks to our very efficient (and cheap!) tuk tuk driver,
I wish we had more time to spend in this part of the country... it's just so beautiful!

We kicked off our day with a visit to Tiger Kingdom,
a total tourist trap, but come on... how could we pass up an opportunity to cuddle with these kitties?
Oh no biggie... just taking a quick power nap..
How gorgeous are these creatures? I must have taken hundreds of photos, because I simply couldn't believe this moment was real. 
After a few hours of hanging with the tigers,
our driver asked if we wanted to spend some time with monkeys too.
Ummmm.... is that a serious question?
Meeting Sam... it was love at first sight!
Family photo... LOL!
Hanging with Sam and his buddies for a few hours was awesome. 
It didn't cease to amaze us how incredibly intelligent these mammals are. 
You should have seen some of the tricks that these guys had up their sleeves!
Riding bikes, giving kisses, lifting weights and so much more. 
So fun. 

From there we made our way up the mountain towards Wat Phra That Doi Suthep,
truly the most stunning temple we've seen during our trip. 
According to legend, the site was chosen by an honoured Buddha relic mounted on the back of a white elephant.
The animal wandered until it passed away on Doi Suthep, 
making this the relic's new home. 
To get to the temple, one must climb a long flight of steps lined by ceramic-tailed naga.
As you can imagine, the views from the top are breathtaking!
 It was a jam-packed yet amazing day. 
We were so fortunate to come "home" to our villa at the Khum Phaya Resort & Spa
God how I miss that jacuzzi tub!
I highly recommend this hotel if you're looking for a place to stay in Chiang Mai.