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January 24, 2008

Excess Baggage

We know you’ve just unpacked from your Christmas vacation but we come bearing good news…it’s holiday time again! Keep out the suitcase and start booking your annual leave, Chinese New Year is around the corner and we have some sensational suggestions for you stylish jet-setters out there.  From exotic far-flung locations to the perfect beauty essentials for any destination, look no further…it’s time to start packing, again!

The Ski Buff
Where: Niseko-Hirafu Mountain, Japan (
Want to catch the end of ski season but don’t fancy flying across the globe to get to the slopes?  Niseko in Hokkaido is the place everyone’s talking about and best of all it’s essentially on our doorstep.   Whoosh down a choice of 57 runs spread over 47 km of freshly groomed terrain, suiting all types of skiers, from first timers to Olympic Gold’s. The fun doesn’t stop there. As night falls, try a powder night-skiing session through Niseko’s illuminated slopes.  After your rigorous workout, treat your sore muscles to a soak in the region’s famous natural hot springs (Note to ski bunnies: you don’t necessarily have to wait ‘til after skiing, could be an early morning treat!).
Don’t forget your: Kiehl’s Vital Sun Protection SPF 30 Sunscreen (Kiehl’s, HK$125), Elizabeth Arden 8-Hour Cream (Seibu, HK$160) and La Mer Lip Balm (Lane Crawford, HK$400)

The Zen Yogi
Where: Como Shambhala Estate at Begawan Giri, Bali (
Been a hectic start to the year? Take time out to focus on your inner yogi in the blissful surroundings of Como Shambala Estate at Begawan Giri. Nestled amid jungle greenery overlooking the Ayung river and rice paddy fields, this is the ultimate place to recharge your batteries. Locally sourced Como Shambhala organic cuisine and leading specialists in contemporary holistic health and wellness will have you feeling more detoxed than ever before. While daily yoga, pilates and meditation classes will awaken muscles you never even knew you had!
Don’t forget your: Dr. Hauschka Rose Day Cream (Lane Crawford, HK$280), Jurlique Citrus Purifying Mist (Jurlique, HK$330) and The Organic Pharmacy Rose & Jasmine Body Oil (The Organic Pharmacy, HK$580)

The Beach Babe
Where: Aleenta Resort, Phuket, Thailand (
Can’t wait for summer to sport your favourite bikini and frolic in the sand and sea?  Well, you don’t have to! Head to Phuket where the sun is always shining and the sleek and contemporary Aleenta Resort is a blank canvas awaiting your colourful summer fantasies.  Set on a pristine stretch of private beach, this sister hotel to the famous Aleenta Hua Hin takes the unique concept of bringing outdoor-living-in to this intimate property.  Explore the Andaman Sea on Aleenta’s new private yacht or revel in a personalized Thai cooking class, which includes a trip to the morning market to pick up the freshest local ingredients and ends with an exceptional dining experience on the villa’s serene rooftop.
Don’t forget your: India Hicks Island Living Spider Lily Body Polish (Crabtree & Evelyn, HK$145 before Jan 27), Aesop Rose Hair & Scalp Moisturizing Masque (Aesop, HK$205), and Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturizer with SPF 20 (Lane Crawford, HK$380)

The Mountain Trekker
Where: Amankora, Bhutan (
If you enjoy trekking through awe-inspiring mountains, they don’t come more spectacular than this.  Set in the stunning landscape of the traditional Buddhist kingdom of Bhutan, which welcomes only a restricted number of visitors per year, Amankora incorporates five luxury Bhutanese-inspired lodges.  Embark on a peaceful pilgrimage through the deep, green valleys of this enlightened land where wild mountain goats, langur monkeys and even the occasional leopard may be sighted. Be tutored in the ancient art of archery using traditional bamboo bows or indulge the adventurer in you with a white water rafting journey through the sparkling river valleys.
Don’t forget your: Origins Plantidote Mega-Mushroom Face Cream (Origins, HK$560), Crabtree & Evelyn Goat’s Milk Skin Therapy Hand Recovery (Crabtree & Evelyn, HK$235) and The Body Shop Peppermint Cooling Foot Soak (The Body Shop, HK$135)

The Slick Urbanite
Where: The Shilla, Seoul, South Korea (
Don’t want to be torn away from the bright lights and bustling streets, but fancy a change of scenery? It’s time to step out in Seoul.  Rising from 23 acres of landscaped parkland in the heart of the city, The Shilla blends Korea’s rich cultural heritage with luxurious design and impeccable service. Wander through the grounds to the hotel’s sculpture garden displaying more than 70 sculptures, created by 40 well known Korean contemporary artists or chill out at the property’s opulent Guerlain spa.  Explore the nearby boutiques featuring Korean cutting edge fashion and sample the local delicacies while soaking up the energy of this vibrant city.
Don’t forget your: Clinique City Block Sheer Moisturizer with SPF 25 (Clinique, HK$180), Frederic Fekkai Hair Glossing Cream (Lane Crawford, HK$205) Caudalie Skin Lifting Serum (Sasa, HK$560) and Laura Mercier Pink Diamond Lip Glace (Lane Crawford, HK$230)

Whether it’s ski boots or a bikini you’ll be packing, make sure to layer on the adventure, stock up on excitement and pile on the fun!

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