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October 15, 2010

Meet, Play, Love

Whether you want to Meet, Play, Eat or Pray, here are a few exciting journeys we think you’ll Love. From far-flung getaways to little doses of inspiration right here in HK, your next adventure starts now…

EAT: Italy
Up and Away: Castello del Nero, Tuscany
Set in the heart of the Chianti wine region, this 50-room historic Tuscan villa turned boutique hotel is the perfect spot for a heavenly foodie escape. Designed by Alain Mertens (interior designer to Madonna and Sting), the 12th-century former nobleman’s residence is set on almost 1000 stunning acres and home to frescoed chapels, rose gardens, olive groves and vineyards.  The hotel’s ‘Taste of Tuscany’ experience includes a 4-night stay, a cooking class for two with the Executive Chef, a 4-course dinner in the property’s award winning La Torre restaurant, a 1 hour and 50 minute spa relaxation ritual for two at the hotel’s ESPA, and a half day private wine and olive oil tasting tour with your own car and driver. La dolce vita awaits! (4-day package for two from €2684, http://www.castellodelnero.com)
Here to Stay: Sundays at Goccia
Revisiting the great old Italian tradition of long family meals, Goccia has now opened its doors for dinner on Sunday.  Serving an exclusive family-style menu of hearty signature dishes such as homemade pizzas and pastas, eggplant served with cherry tomatoes and caper sauce, and sumptuous salads, you can eat, drink and be merry all while catching up with your loved ones. (+852 2167 8181)

PRAY: India
Up and Away: 360 Leti, Himalayas
Nestled at 8,000 feet on a vertiginous plateau in the Kumaon Himalayas, the views from this little gem are nothing short of stupendous. Take in glaciers, glistening rivers, and luscious forests from the panoramic windows of one of four stunningly designed stone, glass, and wood cottages while indulging in the property’s astonishingly delicious organic food.  Service is impeccable and if you can bear to tear yourself away from the property, several local activities can be organized ranging from village tours to forest hikes to fishing expeditions.  Each time of day will offer dramatically different views from eagles soaring at sunrise to a blanket of piercing stars at night.  If you’re after a little soul-stirring, this could be your great escape! (Double, from US$1000 full board, with a 3-night minimum stay http://www.shaktihimalaya.com )
Here to Stay: Karma Yoga Vinyasa Flow Charity Class
Looking to build up your muscles as well as your good karma? On Saturday October 30, at 3pm, one of HK’s top yoga instructors, Wendy Wyvill will hold a vinyasa flow class in support of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, sponsored by Zobha.  The charity class will be held at PURE Yoga Centrium, will be open to all levels, and will include breathing, stretching and strengthening poses. A donation of HK$300 will be required, with all proceeds going straight to Hong Kong Breast Cancer Foundation, and all participants will receive a complimentary Zobha yoga top (valued at HK$450). To sign up, contact PURE at +852 2971 0055 or

LOVE: Bali
Up and Away: Alila Villas Uluwatu
Set on a cliff-top plateau along the southern coastline of Bali’s Bukit Peninsula, the jaw-droppingly stunning Alila Villas Uluwatu will be the perfect backdrop for your next uber-romantic affaire. Choose from one of 84 expertly environmentally designed villas, each featuring private pools and cabanas with sweeping views over the Indian Ocean.  Enjoy the ultimate privacy and exclusivity of your villa as your every whim is catered to by a personal butler, who can help you arrange anything from private temple dinners to spa sequences to excursions around the island – if you should choose to venture out of your room that is! (Doubles from US$550 http://www.alilahotels.com/uluwatu)
Here to Stay: Picnic in the Park
Wicker baskets, wine, cheese and chocolates, hours spent lounging on the grassy knolls with your amour. Fantasy? No longer! Here to complete your perfect picnic dreams is the Discovery Bay annual Picnic in the Park on Saturday, November 6th, featuring 10 hours of live musical entertainment including much loved local bands The Vibes, Helium 3, Soul Traders, and Signal 8. In addition to the music on stage, there will be over 250 individual performers, more than 50 market stalls and finger lickin’ good food options from ZAKS, Hemingway’s and McSorleys. 100% of proceeds from the festival will benefit The Hong Chi Association, which educates, trains and empowers people with intellectual disabilities and the Hong Kong Student Aid Society, which provides foster care, residential services and schooling to children in Hong Kong. (http://www.picnicintheparkhk.com)

Who knows, with all the soul-stirring, palette-pleasing, adrenaline-seeking experiences you’ll have, you may be inspired to create your own best-selling book!



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