Sunday, February 25, 2018

Little black dress with white details: Mumbai diaries

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Little black dress 

Hello everyone!

Hope you had an amazing weekend with your loved ones on Rakhi! I ditched my brother ( I know I am mean 🙁 ) on Rakhi and instead tagged along with my husband to Mumbai on his official trip. I love impromptu trips and I am having an amazing time so far. We have a few relatives here and we are being soooo pampered. We went to see Gateway of India, marine drive, hopped on to local train (it was first time and I got a seat :D). We visited the famous joints here such as Leopold Café, K. Rustom’s Icecream, and Bademian for mouthwatering delicacies. I am pretty sure that at the rate I am eating here, I will gain at least 2-3 kilos on this trip 😛 For instant updates, don’t forget to follow me on instagram here.

Though I love Delhi, the feel of Mumbai air is making me have second thoughts! Sight of sea whenever you turn on some corners, the fast pace of life, carefree casual attitude of people is enticing. I have two more days here, so let me know if there are any must see points.

As for the outfit, I packed at the last moment and hence for the first time in life, packed light. I had kept one formal dress which I wore for dinner last night. It’s a classic little black dress with white frill-type details. I love this detailing which makes this dress different from the usual ones and gives it a classy appeal. Instead of black shoes, I went with white (had forgotten to put in matching bag and shoes :P) which went well and completed the look with my trusty everyday leopard print bag. With my everyday jewelry and watch on, I was good to go.

Here’s a look at my Little Black Dress aka LBD 😉

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What’s your favourite kind of LBD? What did you wear for Rakhi? Don’t forget to let us know in the comments below or tag us #fashionmuses on Facebook or instagram.
Love
Shruti

Photography credits: Akshay Chawla

::Outfit details::

Dress: Local store in Turkey
Bag: Betsy Johnson (available at Steve Madden stores)
Shoes: Venus Steps
Accessories: Watch, Rado; Diamond Jewelry, leading jeweler in Delhi

A Vacation Capsule

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Hi guys!

How are you all doing? After a series of posts on beach outfits and my travel experiences at one of the most beautiful islands in Thailand called the Koh Samui ( see here, here and here), today I have capsuled for you my outfits and highlights from my holiday.

With the airport outfits becoming popular on most blogs, especially the ones based on celeb dressing, I have come up with two of my such pairings. While flying to the island, I tried to keep the beachy excitement alive by adding a lot of blues to my outfit. I wore a sky blue tank top with my favorite pair of black denim that is the most comfortable. I carried a black cover-up along to save myself from the cold. And while flying back to India, I was all exhausted and sad (holiday was ending 🙁 ), so I kept it simple and easy with a black back-pack and the grey t-shirt on the same pair of denim (the only one i carried!). Closed comfortable shoes are a must for me on the long flights, where you require to walk a lot surfing airports, stand in long queues and also because my feet get terribly cold.

Have a look at my Airport Outfits.

Outfit 1:
airport 1

Outfit 2:

airport look

Stripes are a wardrobe essential for any women, be it t-shirts, shirts or dresses. I got a bright orange and white stripes dress stitched from Simran Aggarwal after being inspired by a similar dress in yellow and white at Burberry. This dress is apt for beach holiday or otherwise, is super comfortable as it is in linen and looks very cool and chic. I paired it with my dark pink flats and a similar striped tote in blue and white. Reflectors are again a must for a beach holiday!

Outfit 3:
orange white stripes

I have always been accused by my friends of being clicked in sunglasses. Shades are my bestest friends as they help me hide my tiredness, non-make-up eyes, dark circles, my stares,  and make me look good. Everybody looks good in sunglasses if they are made for your face cut. My collection of sunglasses this holiday season can be seen below. Obviously, the mirrored sunglasses are so much in vogue and are found all around especially when you are in Thailand. Also a collection of t-shirts is a must on such a vacation. By keeping a few favorite and versatile pieces of tops, you can mix and match with just a pair of shorts, a skirt and a dungree to create a surprising number of outfit options, and still share a single suitcase with your hubby. And that’s exactly what I did!

sunglasses @ samui

Sunglasses (in sequence from left to right): Orange Reflectors: Rayban; Back Aviators: Rayban; Big Black Shades: Dior; Round Reflectors: Aldo; Blue Reflectors: Rayban.

T-Shirts and dresses (left to right): TOP: Orange white stripes dress: Diva Rose; Black dress: BCBG; Black and white Kaftan: Samoi @ Chaweng Beach

BOTTOM: Full Moon Party: Night Market at Chaweng Beach; Peach and white bundy: Esprit; Blue T-shirt: Promod

And last but not the least I would like to share with you the pictures of my two-bedroom suite at the Banyan Tree Hotel in Bangkok. Its big and beautiful, enriched with all modern amenities, access to club lounge and a complimentary mini-bar. Concierge is helpful and patient. I loved this property!

Banyan tree

Do comment to let me know how you like my outfits! #Fashionmuses with your recent beach pairings.

Its gonna rain festivals in India now, and thus rain celebrations. We shall keep you updated with the Indian wear trends this festive season along with our regular western wear OOTD posts. Do keep watching this space for more and more!

Thanks for reading and thanks for your love that we get through the social media!

Radhika Gupta

::Outfit details::

Outfit 1:

Tank top: United Colors of Benetton

Denim: Guess

Footwear: Tory Burch

Sunglasses: Aldo

Tote Bag: Michael Kors

Watch: Longines

Outfit 2:

T-Shirt: Platinum Mall, Bangkok

Denim: Guess

Footwear: Tory Burch

Black Bag-Pack: Platinum Mall, Bangkok

Watch: Longines

Outfit 3:

Dress: Simran Aggarwal

Footwear: Michael Kors

Tote Bag: Michael Kors

Sunglasses: Rayban

Watch: GC

Beach Holiday Outfit

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Hi everyone!

How are you all? I m back with Koh Samui trip posts. Thailand is a shopper’s paradise! you can get coolest trendy clothes at very affordable prices. This is one country where you can go with an empty suitcase and you won’t regret. But don’t forget to bargain here even at the shops.

I bought this sheer white and black kaftan dress from a store called ‘Samui’ on the Chaweng beach on the island. The lady at the shop quoted it at 1500 Baht, and I managed to bargain it at 700 Baht…yess! less than half the price! I paired it with my favourite pair of Dior sunglasses as it was a hot sunny day. Puma flip flops, and my daughter’s colorful beach bag (which was good enough to carry my costume, towel and clothes while in the sand) were perfect my beach look 😀

So check out my pictures on the beach and do let us know your views in the comments section below!

koh samui kaftan

samui hotel 1

samui hotel

dior shades

puma slippers

samui bracelet

beach bag

Thank you so much for reading!

Love

Radhika

::Outfit Details::

Kaftan Dress: Chaweng beach

Sunglasses: Dior

Beach bag: Thrifted

Footwear: Puma

Bracelet: Chaweng Beach

 

 

 

A trip to Koh Samui! Travel Tips!

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Hi everyone!

How are you? How did you spend the extended weekend? I was told that most of the people in Delhi were travelling. I went for a short trip to Koh Samui in Thailand. Its a beatiful place meant for relaxation. I have compiled a few non-filtered pictures here, but stay tuned for more on Koh Samui and my outfit posts. Based on my (and of my friends’) travel experiences I have compiled a list of important tips to watch when travelling. Do keep such a checklist hand to avoid confusion and time wastage at various occasions. Check them out!

Travelling any time soon? Must-be! But remember some basic travel tips (especially if travelling abroad) for a stress-free holiday.

  1. Keep all the essential documents in place. Keep a scanned copy in your mailbox, and a hard copy in your suitcase to avoid any problems. These include your passports, air tickets, visa, itinerary, and driving license. Also keep a copy of these with family or friends who you may get back to if required. Thailand gives on-arrival visa to travelers. So keep all your documents handy, to fasten the process.
  2. Familiarize yourself about the weather conditions, rules and customs about the place you are travelling to. This will help you while packing as well. Koh Samui is a beach area, so its hot in the day time and pleasant in the night. Keep your swimming costumes, sunglasses, shorts, dresses, hats, sunscreen, and flip flops. Also carry some beach bags that are waterproof, and which can take in a costume, towel and other essentials,
  3. Carry some food with you especially if you have special dietary requirements, travelling with kids or in case you are a pure veggie! Ready-to-Eat meals are a good solution. They are allowed in almost all places, and are convenient to use. I personally prefer carrying some Haldiram’s RTEs as they taste well. We stayed in 1 two-bedroom villa where we had a small kitchen with all modern amenities. So we could do a little cooking like maggi and all…
  4. Don’t forget your medical kits. Pick a travel medicine list from your family doctor. Most of the doctors have a ready list especially during holiday season. Some basic medicines (like those for cold, cough, fever, antibiotics etc) must be carried as you might have a tough time getting those in case of requirement in a few countries.
  5. Split the money and keep it in different bags to diversify the risk. Also leave some at the hotel in the packed luggage when on excursions.
  6. Travel with an open mind. Talk and get along with people you meet during your travel. We really learn a lot through this! Always smile and greet people you have eye-contact with. Talk to your coach or cab drivers while on the way, for both knowledge and safety reasons. Like in Thailand the people say ” Sawasdee Krab ” for males, and ” Sawasdee Ka ” for females to greet. This can be used for “Hi”, “Good morning”, “Good afternoon”, “Good evening”, for all occasions . This phrase is the all mighty greeting phrase.
  7. Less Luggage means more Fun. You can shop easily with no worries of carrying or customs if you carry less from home. On a trip of 20 days to the States, my hubby and I shared a single suitcase, contrary to 3 big ones while on our honeymoon. Believe you me, it was soo damn hassle-free this time! While waiting for my luggage at the carousel, I overheard most people saying that they took a single suitcase, and came back with at least two. Thus, the less you carry, easier it will be to shop (especially at places like Bangkok) and bring back with no fear of customs.
  8. At times be lazy, but most of the times be an early-riser. You will avoid rush at excursions, get best photos to click in the best lights and will not miss any attraction due to late arrival. Don”t miss the party fun at the Chaweng beach!
  9. Keep reading travel related reviews at websites like tripadvisor.com, makemytrip.com etc. Having a first-hand information will ensure you do not waste time, and get the best out of it.
  10. Most importantly Have Fun! Click a lot of selfies, chill and keep you cell phone at bay at some times. Remember you are out to relax…and you will get all updates of hometown once you are back!

It’ll be nice if we get more suggestions from you and we increase the number of tips. Thus do let us  know in the comments section below!

I have compiled some pictures from my trip, check them out! And keep watching this space for my outfit and travel posts from this lovely island!

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Samui Hat

samui beach
kohh samui

A birds eye view if the island from a hotel!

samui island

Girls having some fun in water!

water surfing

Lazying on the beach!

@the beach

Do visit the W Retreat Resort during the sunset time for this spectacular view!

W retreat

And last but definitely not the least!

chaweng

 

Hope you have lovely travel plans soon!

Thanx for Reading!

Love

Radhika

Some beach essentials can be shopped here online!

To buy hats click here.

To buy sunglasses click here, and for cool reflectors check this out.

Get a sexy pair of swimming costume according to your body type. Try this and this.

For beach bag click here.

Get some best sunscreens here.

Check this beach cover-up and sarong.

 

 

 

Travel Diaries: Mirror of the Sky

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Adab! Yes, that’s how they greet anyone and everyone they meet right from the main gates of this grand Palace. The Falaknuma Palace is one of the finest palaces in India. It was owned by the Nizam of Hyderabad. Falak-numa, in Urdu, means “mirroring the sky”, and thus the story that the princess got the exterior painted more than a 100 times so that it matches the color of the sky at dusk. It took nine long years to construct the palace in the 1880’s, and it took ten years to renovate and restore the palace. The Taj group had taken charge of converting the royal palace into a luxury hotel, and it started operations in 2010. Relatively new amongst the other royal palaces that the Taj Group owns and runs (the Lake Palace in Udaipur , the Rambagh Palace in Jaipur, and the Umaid Bhawan Palace in Jodhpur), the hotel has become popular as a wedding destination as well as a royal indulgence.

Hyderabad had never been a part of my “to go” list, and it skyrocketed as travel destination when heard about the Falaknuma Palace. I have some cool reasons for you to visit the Falaknuma Palace, and also the Indian Silicon Valley – Hyderabad.

Why to  visit the Falaknuma?

Rich and Interesting history of the city

Hyderabad was the largest and most prosperous of all princely states in India. The Nizams of Hyderabad had one of the most illustrious rule in India, so much so that even after the Indian independence in 1947, Hyderabad stayed defiant as an independent state until Sept 1948. Seven generations of Asaf Ali Khan’s family ruled the state and 7th Nizam was the richest man in the world in his times and also featured on the cover of the Time magazine. All such stories and more will come to you once you are in the old part of the city. Falaknuma houses a large collection of rare treasures including paintings, statues, furniture, manuscripts and books of the Nizams. The jade collection is unique in the world. The current Nizam lives in Turkey, and gifted this palace to his second wife when he divorced her.

Jade-Room

'The Jade Room'

Arrival and Traditional Welcome

The royalty begins right at the Airport when the well-maintained car and a courteous driver greets you for pick-up. The 40 minute drive to the palace was full of General Knowledge about the city. Once you are at the gates, a horse-driven chariot is waiting for you to take you up the hill to the main entrance. My little daughter was amazed to take the ride every time we went out of the palace, and she kept choosing between the white and the black horses. They offer you the lovely welcome drinks, followed by the floral shower, applying of the Indian ‘Tilak’ and spraying of scented water as in the ancient times. Check-in happens in the luxury of your room. Not to forget, `it was lovely of the hotel staff to upgrade our room to the next category.

Welcome at the hotel

Horse chariot

Historical walk of the Palace

Every evening the in-house historian takes you for a walk around the Palace, highlighting the way the Nizams lived. The Palace has some of the finest collections of the Nizam treasure. The large Venetian chandeliers, rare furniture, grand marble staircases and gurgling fountains, priceless statues, and objects’ d’art, stained-glass windows, unique sketches and murals encased in ornate frames, a world-class collection of crystal as well as the Mughal, Rajasthani and Japanese gardens personally conceived by the Nizam are all worth admiring. Also while you are still enjoying the entertaining stories, the hotel team obligingly cracks open a bottle of champagne, and pour you a glass to walk around with.

Gardens of Falaknuma

Dining hall

Luxury of the rooms

The accommodation is ought to be classy and comforting of this grand Palace. I stayed at the Akbar Suite, and it had a beautiful living area, dining table and a washroom with all modern facilities. You can have a look at the pictures.

akabr suite bed

Akbar suite (2)

Akbar suite 1

Washroom

Suite washroom

Closet in the suite

Courteous Staff

The Taj group is known for its hospitality, and when it comes to the Palaces it becomes all the more royal. The drivers were very knowledgeable, adjusting and soft-spoken. The front desk was keen to take any queries, and upgraded our rooms by themselves. They had made a big arrangement for birthday celebration which was awesome! The in-room dining guys were accommodating to get anything we ordered for the baby and were ready to change whenever requested. The pool staff inflated my baby’s big swimming tube with their mouth which was really a difficult task to do. My room had all the baby amenities set up like the cot, sterilizer, toiletries, bath toys, bath tub and even the pot sheet!

Spa

Jiva Spa is world renowned and this palace is a perfect place to relax and indulge in one of the signature treatments. The Fitness center, Swimming pool, and Steam room are good enough to keep you busy during a part of your stay.

Jiva spa

Dining options

The Palace has 6 dining options. Breakfast at Adda is sumptuous with innumerable a la carte options. Don’t forget to talk to the chef a day before if you have some special dietary requirements. They will happily prepare anything for you even out of their menu. The afternoon tea at the Jade Room, a relaxing session at the Hookah lounge, the poolside bar, Celeste the Italian restaurant, all offer you a wide choice of culinary delights.

Poolside bar

"The Poolside Bar"

Falaknuma terrace

"The Terrace"

Qawwali Night

The soulful sufi music, the scented aroma, and the views of the illuminated city from the balcony at dusk was a memorable experience. We loved it!

Qawali (2)

Qawali (2)

Lil maestro

Ramadan Lights

I happened to visit the city during the auspicious month of Ramadan. The markets were busy, city was lighted, eateries were busy, in short the city was full of life! Since 60 percent of the population follows Islam, the festival is celebrated with pomp and show. The old city of Hyderabad came alive and a festive atmosphere prevailed.

Terrace

Everlasting Memories

Shopping is not the best thing to do in these crowded days. But when you are there in the city try your hand on some of the beautiful bangles and pearl accessories. Also pick some of the products from the most famous Karachi Bakery. It boasts of the highest counter sales in the city and also has a small store at the airport. The greetings from the hotel staff, combined with a wonderful stay experience is what we got with us.

RoomBook

Some Quick Facts

* Rack rates at Taj Falaknuma Palace begin at 24,500 INR but I would prefer one of the packages offered.

* The hotel can arrange for a local tour guide to take you to the nearby Chowmahalla Palace (built in 1720) and some other museums. The highlight of our tour was finishing at the Laad Bazaar where you can buy stone set bangles, which come from here.

Note: The featured image is from the Hotel Website.

 

Dancing in the rain: Coorg part II

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Dancing in the rain: COORG Part II

Hello everyone!

Welcome to Coorg Part II (click here for Part I)! Coorg is a small hill station in the rain forest area in Karnataka. After a pleasant six-hour drive from Bangalore, we reached our resort. When we entered the lobby, we were left speechless by the spectacle in front of us. The clouds engulfed us and there was NOTHING beyond it! It rained non-stop in Coorg. So if you see foggy pictures, you know who to blame 😉 😛

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Lobby to eternity 😉
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Us 🙂

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Packing tips for monsoon vacation

As I mentioned in the previous post that the only practical things to wear that I had in this trip was my skinny jeans, PJ’s and chappals. But that made me enjoy this trip even more because I could not fret over clothes and was ready in minutes to enjoy this beautiful city. What I loved the most about Coorg is the feeling of being close to nature; fresh forest fragrance after each shower, the cooing of birds and sudden descent of fog, makes it a very different experience.

Also read: Fashion tips for Monsoon

As for sight-seeing, there are a few places that one can visit in Coorg. We went to Abbey Falls and Golden temple. We also wanted to visit Dubbare where you can feed and bathe elephants, but could not make it. But the best thing to do is to have rain forest walks and early morning hikes. Most resorts offer these in-house and they are a must. We undertook one and the experience was amazing. We went through muddy waters, saw golden bugs, coffee plantations, crossed a fallen tree, saw forbidden forest et all.

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Golden Temple

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Abbey falls
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All suited up to find my way across the rain forest!
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Muddy rain forest

We stayed at Taj Vivanta Madikeri and loved everything about the resort; the views, our cozy room, helpful staff and most importantly, FOOD 😀 Check out some pictures of the resort…

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Looking out through the lobby
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Bedroom

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For the last day, I again relied on layering for the journey back to Delhi. I paired a hounds tooth patterned shrug over an all-black outfit.

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Baggi that roamed us around

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PS: No, I was not paid by Taj for their marketing…although I do wish I was 😉

Have you guys been to Coorg? What do you like to wear in monsoon? Do let us know in the comments below! Hope you have a wonderful week ahead.

Thanks a lot for reading 🙂

Love
Shruti

Photography credits: Akshay Chawla

::Outfit details::

Outfit 1
T-shirt: Bebe, Jeans: Zara, Bag: Bangkok, Chappals: ADDA
Outfit 2
T-shirt: Mango, Ganji: Nike, Lowers: Nike
Outfit 3
T-shirt: Guess, Jeans: Zara, Shrug: Tidestore

How to dress up for the airport

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How to dress up for the airport

How-to-dress-for-airport-1

Hello everyone!

How was your weekend? I just came back fully refreshed and rejuvenated from a five day long vacation in Coorg, Karnataka. It is rain forest area and we arrived there right in the middle of monsoon! Needless to say, that it was raining all day and night. My plans and packing to wear maxis and dresses went down with the rain 😛 All we wore during the entire trip was PJ’s and t-shirts. But even so, weather was amazing with fog and fresh greenery surrounding us. It was like living amongst the clouds.

How to dress up for the airport

To avoid make this post verrry long, I decided to share it all with you in two parts. For part I, the focus is entirely on how to dress up for the airport and some packing tips for monsoon season, all thanks to my own mistakes 😛 (you thought I would know this beforehand huh?)

For the flights, layering is the key for me. It’s comfy, gives you flexibility across temperatures and looks chic. For my outfit, I layered black sleeveless top with black long shrug. I choose dark colors for journey as they don’t appear dirty for long. I wore rigged jeans to make the look trendy. With my trusty backpack and flat loafers (I can’t bear to wear heels for longer than 2 hours), I was ready for my voyage 🙂

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Monsoon vacation packing tips

Do’s and don’ts for a monsoon vacation:

  1. Pack lot of PJ’s, shorts (if you can bear the cool temperature) and capris. It would be better if your lowers are either short or skinny fit. Forget long skirts and maxis if you don’t like your clothes to get wet!
  2. For footwear, rely on good old rubber chappals. These will be your best friend coz everything will be wet within 10-15 mins and you will be stuck with soaked footwear. You can also carry your fit flops and rain boots.
  3. Carry a good raincoat if you wish to do some treks or hikes. It’s difficult to take long walks carrying umbrellas all the time (I can vouch for this one with personal experience :P)
  4. If you like make-up then make sure that all of it is water proof because otherwise it would have just the opposite result than you intended 😉
  5. Carry low-maintenance bags, the one’s you won’t mind if it gets ruined! You never know when it starts poring suddenly and there are chances of your bag getting wet too.
  6. Go for a good resort that has lot of in-house activities to keep you occupied. With clogged roads, it may be difficult to move around much and you may want to relax in the resort only.
  7. Lastly, just enjoy yourself and let the rain sooth your nerves. Whats better than to reading a book, watching rain through window with a cup of filter coffee in hand 🙂 (except getting drenched and catching a cold..lol)

Stay tuned for a foggy experience in the next series (Dancing in the rains: Coorg Part II) 🙂

 

Do you love rains? Let us know in the comments below!

Also read: Fashion tips for monsoon

Thank a lot for reading!

Love
Shruti

Photography credits: Akshay Chawla

::Outfit details::

Top: Bebe
Shrug: Bangkok
Bag: Bangkok
Shoes: (Emerald) Blue Parrot
Jeans: ONLY
Sunglasses: AND

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