Korean Beauty : Etude House is now global

etude house campaign

I usually make the most of the time when I come to Asia - read either Korea or close to Korean influence area, to do the bulk of my beauty shopping. Why? Because good skin is one of the key elements of Asian beauty, so the brands here have to compete in quality, price and packaging - the latter is the most probable cause of my weakness from anything coming from this side of the world. The thing is that I have been talking about all these products for years, about how fun it is to try uber cheao yet good sheet masks and my never ending love story with ETUDE House. But then what? Should you buy a plane ticket to try, or? Not anymore because...

ETUDE HOUSE IS NOW SHIPPING GLOBALLY!!! I just discovered today, when browsing their site trying to prioritize what to get tomorrow... Not only that, they are going global for real. ETUDE House started their own youtube channel where Korean girls teach you all their best tricks - subtitles available thanks god (see some videos below). Personally, I love how they explain their "basic 4-step beauty routine" (seriously, I read this in a magazine on the way to INCHEON airport in Seoul . what is basic about 4 steps?), the "tear drop eyes" and finally the "gradation lips". Some may suit our gaijin faces better than others but hey, If we don't try, we we'll never know!!!

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Tokyo shopping : Shibuya 109

shibuya 109

After a while back in Europe, I realized we were missing a post on Shibuya 109 - the institution for Japanese gals and teenage shopping and must visit for anyone interested in fashion. Regardless you like it or not, it is the perfect introduction to the Japanese Teen scene (aka Junior High School) that beats at the very heart of my beloved Shibuya.

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Taipei streets: The walk

Taipei street walk

Los que me seguís en instagram sabéis que desde mediados de Abril, llevo un año muy ajetreado. Familia de visita, mudanza, viaje a Estambul, boda y de repente... Me veo tres semanas en Asia, dos por trabajo - Seoul y Taipei - y una por placer, en Tokyo.

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Bonaire : Salines

saline mines in Bonaire
There is something mesmerizing about the saline mine landscape in Bonaire. It feels like being somewhere else, belonging to outer space, where huge conveyor belts are everyday business, pink comes across as the normal shade of water and white flakes gravitate around you as some kind of abstract butterflies. Ironically, Bonaire's history around salt flats is a bit more about pain than it is about dreams. When the Dutch arrived to the island, it was obvious that it didn't have much to offer in terms of crop but man, those flat lands on the south... They could do as perfect salt mines, when mixed up with a sufficient amount of skilled slaves.
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Bonaire : SPICE Restaurant

SPICE restaurant in Bonaire
SPICE is the restaurant within Eden Beach Resort. Trying to not be biased by the fact of having such a cool lounge for al fresco dining by the seaside is not simple task, but the changing menu, party atmosphere (only on Friday and only until 23 or so) it's unbeatable. As you can see, they got everything from sushi through salad to steak and fries, nice service and romantic views of the sea with a few torches lined up along the beach. Wish there was a button to teleport us back but hey, in the meanwhile, maybe you are the lucky one to drop by in the near future. Meanwhile I leave you with some yummy shots of our dinner - salad, tacos, sushi & some Caribbean-style fish, all at once.

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Bonaire : Après Diving Sunset

Bonaire sunset relax after diving

Hay días que te parten el corazón, esos en los que te llevas un desengaño de los grandes. Terminan por romper en pedazos todas tus esperanzas, dejándote con una sensación de desasosiego, consecuencia de la impotencia que se siente al saber que una gran injusticia se está cometiendo y que, independientemente de lo que hagas, no hay mucho margen de reacción para cambiarlo. Sólo queda tener paciencia, esperar que cambie la marea y vengan oportunidades mejores. Estos días se pasan mejor con una copa de vino y una porción de chocolate de más. Una lagrimica en la intimidad del coche, de vuelta para casa. Un poco de magreo gatuno antes de dormir - pobre Byakko - y una vista atrás, a aquellos tiempos pasados que fueron definitivamente mejores.
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Istanbul : Souvenir Shopping

Istanbul souvenir shopping guide

For you busy traveller with little time to choose and will to bring something nice for those waiting back home. FORGET ABOUT Grand Bazaar and explore the local jewels, that actually offer much more bang for the buck. Today, we visit Les Arts Turcs aka the perfect art gallery featuring local artists where you can find anything from traditional ceramics through cute details in the shape of handmade magnets, organic soap or glass keychains. As you can see in Les Arts Turcs MAP, it is very close to the entrance to Hagia Sophia - a small detour well well worth it. The owner is super kind and if you come with some extra time, you can enjoy one of their workshops for a more intimate experience on the traditional techniques.

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Cats of Istanbul

cats of istanbul
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5 hours in Istanbul

istanbul guide for the business traveller

Still bewitched by the charm of Istanbul, the frontier between East and West, formerly known as Byzantium and later on Constantinople, I decided to drop some lines for you business traveller with little time and a huge desire to experience new places, as an afternoon is enough to get a feeling of what this city can offer. Despite the excitement of having access to the Executive perks of Hilton Bomonti (featuring free drinks at floor 34) we decided to leave the hotel as soon as the conference was over, hoping for the 5h until our table at 360 to be sufficient.

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Bonaire : Kitesurfing

Bonaire kitesurfing guide

Bonaire is famous for its steady trade winds, turquoise waters, healthy fringe coral reef inhabited by rainbow tropical fish banks and pink flamingos. Blend this amazing nature together with an average air and water temperature of 27C (80F) year round and bang, there it comes the ultimate Caribbean Paradise with the secret plus of laying outside the hurricane belt.

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Bonaire : Between 2 Buns

The perfect brunch at Bonaire is served at Between 2 Buns

Bonaire's perfect brunch is served at between 2 buns. The whole place feels like one of those roadside diners where a girl called Peggy Sue wearing cateye lenses serves watered coffee out of a jar. At Between 2 Buns, is just the retro feel what you get to, as the quality of the freshly brewed espresso, served along the perfect egg scramble, bowl of fruit or earthy piece of chocolate cake is much better than you would have ever expected, the first time you sat down there. 

While on vacation, we usually don't eat lunch - just get by some water and a quest bar - but we do enjoy long breakfasts, planning for the day ahead and commenting on the highlights of yesterday. Make sure you try once, I am certain you will be coming back.

Between 2 Buns es un café de Bonaire que queda muy cerca de Eden Beach Resort, donde sirven los mejores huevos revueltos de todo el Caribe.  Tiene un rollo años 50, pero sólo en el aspecto, ya que el espresso que sirven nada tiene que ver con el café aguachinado de una Peggy Sue cualquiera. El caso es que terminamos desayunando allí casi todos los días. Por el mismo precio que en el hotel, tienes mucha variedad entre la que elegir, además de unas tartas mucho más cebadas para el goloso de Enrique. 

A juzgar por la cantidad de gente que acudía allí cada mañana, supongo que se trata de una de las mejores cafeterías de la isla. Al menos a mí, me queda un recuerdo genial de sus huevos revueltos, los sandwiches, boles de fruta con yogur y tartas que nos dio tiempo a probar durante nuestra estancia. No os lo perdáis!

The perfect brunch at Bonaire is served at Between 2 Buns
The perfect brunch at Bonaire is served at Between 2 Buns
The perfect brunch at Bonaire is served at Between 2 Buns
The perfect brunch at Bonaire is served at Between 2 Buns
The perfect brunch at Bonaire is served at Between 2 Buns
The perfect brunch at Bonaire is served at Between 2 Buns
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Thai Fashion Crush : Darlin Jewelry

darlin jewelry

My friend Chris always complains about shopping in Malaga. I guess that moving away from Tokyo is not easy for her either, at least when it comes to shopping. We were discussing about this, when I realized that I do not miss it so much, because I do most of my shopping while I am traveling for work. This year, I caught the perfect jeans & sandals (at Acne) while in Stockholm, Korean cosmetics while in Taipei and wedding accessories while in Bangkok.

Darlin Jewelry is a Thai jewelry brand that specializes on dreamy yet bold items to turn any minimalistic outfit into an unforgettable piece of streestyle art. Scared by EU import duties, I did not dare to order any of their items despite spamming the owner, who kindly answer all my emails, everytime a new piece of desire made its way to their instagram

My day was to come. So, when I landed in Bangkok for work, I directly contacted them to check on stock and arrange so that I could get a couple of pieces just on time for a wedding coming up the month after. Conveniently delivered straight to my hotel, they were super kind with me. I couldn't be happier about the quality of the leather and the swarovski elements on these somewhat-weird-in-Europe accessories. I have a penchant for bling, so I'll be certainly coming back to Darlin.

darlin jewelry
darlin jewelry

PS: Watch the clutch in action below, on the purple carpet of a wedding in the lovely village of Ezcaray (La Rioja). Perfect match for my cat ears - completely random purchase at BCBG Max Azria flash sale in La Cañada mall (Marbella).

wedding guest glam wearing clutch by Darlin Jewelry 
Headpiece by BSBG Max Azria and Manolo Blahnik BB stilettos
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