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Posts Tagged ‘holiday’

Always in search of the perfect beach, Alex and I splurged on two fabulous beach holidays this summer.

Ironically, what I realized is that while I do love looking at the beautiful sea, I much prefer swimming in the chlorinated pool. No pesky sand to get all over everything, no sticky salt left behind after drying off, no coral to slice up my feet, and never any slimy seaweed-covered bottom.

Thankfully, I also discovered the sheer bliss of the pool villa.

Our first trip of the summer was to Koh Racha, an island south of Phuket, here in Thailand. When we were booking the trip, we were thinking that it would be our only “vacation” of the summer and the rest of the time would be in the US or here in Bangkok. So, we splurged on a fancy hotel with our very first pool villa:

Our Pool Villa

Private Pool

Yep, that’s our pool – just for our villa, with the view of the ocean through the door.

Now, that’s not to say that the beach on Koh Racha wasn’t up to standards, because it was beautiful:

Perfect Beach

But, I have to admit that I didn’t swim in the sea at all the whole time we were there. It was more than enough to be able to watch and listen to the waves from our private pool.

And now I guess I really am a fancy pants. Because I pretty much only want to stay in pool villas from now on. In fact, I’m so dedicated to my new goal that I actually bought a book called Thailand Pool Villas (clearly a ploy from the Thai Ministry of Tourism, and only available here in Thailand, but one that will serve me well, I’m sure).

As if that wasn’t enough, our second trip of the summer (after spending 3 weeks back in the US) was here:

Beach & Restaurant

The Maldives. Basically, paradise on Earth. Sadly, no pool villa for us here, though (I booked this trip before I knew just how much I was going to love the pool villa).

Each island in the Maldives is so small that the country has a policy of one island, one resort. Our little island was so small that we could walk around the whole thing in about 15 minutes.

Our villa was adorable:

Our Villa at Dusk

with basically our own private beach directly in front:

Relax

I actually made sure to document the most crowded beach day:

Two

Two people.

I’d wanted to go to the Maldives for years, but what finally pushed me to actually go this summer was the fact that Bangkok Air (“Asia’s Boutique Airline” according to them) flies directly there and it’s only a 4 hour flight from Bangkok. I guess summer is the “worst” time to go, so flights were relatively cheap and hotels were offering pretty major discounts. Having said that, I would love to go back again, but I might try a different hotel next time.

Maybe one with a pool villa…

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Today begins our three week semester break! We started celebrating in style last night with a hi so (a cute Thai nickname for “high society) evening of drinks at the Banyan Tree’s Vertigo, dubbed the highest open-air bar in southeast Asia, and dinner at the Suan Lum night bazaar.

We arrived just after five, in time to see the cloudy gray skies over the city:

Gray Skies

Got to watch the beautiful sunset, while enjoying our drinks:

Sunset

Ben and Chrissy

Enjoyed seeing the evening lights slowly brighten:

Dusk

And eventually headed back down to the city for some tasty Thai food:

City Lights

Along with our lovely friends:

Celebrate

The perfect way to start a holiday break, if you ask me!

What are you doing this holiday season?

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I’ve been waiting for this PhotoHunt for a few weeks! Just over a month ago we spent a long weekend in Singapore – a city I had long wanted to visit, but never seemed to manage to make it there (even though it’s only a short hour flight from KL and two hours from Bangkok).Something about the island city-state seems so exciting and cosmopolitan – the skyscrapers right next to the ocean – sounds like the perfect city to me! Plus, I had heard that they have an absolutely stunning Christmas display every year, and we were arriving just in time to see everything get set up.As could be expected, Christmas lights in Singapore are over-the-top, glittering and twinkling on every tree, branch, pole, and building on Orchard Road. Although we only arrived at the very begining of the holiday season, we saw more lights on one street than we’ve seen in the last few years!

Towering Above

Singapore Christmas

All A Glow

Now I must admit, though these lights are especially festive, they are not the only interesting lights I have seen lately. Here are a few more, just to round out this week’s entry:In September, I saw the bright lights of Shanghai:

The Bund

In October, I saw the neon lights of Taipei:

The Brightly Lit Streets of Taipei

And how can I forget the endless lights of Bangkok:

View from Above

The German side of me gets frustrated when I see all of Bangkok’s temples and streets aglow with fairy lights every night, but I have to admit, the gently glimmering sights of this pulsating city has to be one of my favorite things about living here:

Temple of Dawn

All lit up

Bridge at Night

And, of course, we have a few bright little lights in our house as well:

Orange

What kind of lights have you seen lately?

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