Last year was special. Dad celebrated his 75th and it was mum and his 50th wedding anniversary. The family, my brother Aiyaz, his wife Shamira, Shahzain my nephew and his girlfriend Medina flew into Florence from Dubai while my folks, Laveena and I joined them from Mumbai.We spent four nights at the Four Seasons Firenze. The hotel is set in a former 16th-Century convent near one of the largest and most elegant Florentine gardens in the city. Our room was the Renaissance suite with a frescoed ceiling and opulent décor. The large bathroom with a victorian sofa overlooking the perfectly manicured lawns, sprawled generously across 11 acres, seemed like it was designed for royalty. Facilities at the hotel included a luxurious spa and an outdoor pool with a Gatsby like feel.
In the heart of the city of Bangkok there lies a pearl. Elegant in its opulence, sophisticated in its décor, the resplendent 47 story St Regis Hotel at the prestigious Rajadamri road, reaffirms the Starwood Group’s world renowned luxury brand image and makes guests feel like royalty from the word go.
For Laveena’s birthday last year, I wanted to do something different. Very different. So I planned for us to travel to Italy and booked us at Padre Eligio’s “La Frateria”. A monastery built by Saint Francis in the 13th century.
While living at Bären – Das Gästehaus, we had daily adventure options ranging from cycling, horse riding, mountain biking, visits to cheese making factories and museums and of course long alpine walks. Other than for it’s mouthwatering Appenzeller cheese, this region is very well known among the Swiss for easy walks along breathtakingly beautiful high plateau paths and treks through the rich alpine flora to stunning summit points and lakes.
With news about street protests, a Prime Minister deposed, the imposition of martial law followed by a military coup and now curfews, you are forgiven for wanting to opt for a last minute switch in your summer travel plans.
However, in my reading, the country is safer today with the military in charge as compared to what it was a few months ago when street protests called for Yingluck Shinawatra, the 28th Prime Minister of Thailand, to step down. The Thai army chief General Prayuth Chan-ocha is now in power following a bloodless coup. Continue reading →