Healing Juices….make it a habit

My first encyclopedia of healing juices that I've lent to many friends for inspiration and ideas

One of the healthiest things I started 2 years ago inspired by a book and my hydrotherapist was starting my mornings with juicing.

Armed with a juicer and an encyclopedia on juicing, I also encouraged my near and dear friends to follow suit and now its great to see them wake up every morning and juice the life out of various fruits and vegetables.

Its a legacy I’m leaving my closest friends and family so that even if they are far from me or travelling, I shall always be on their mind as the one who inspired them to take juicing seriously as an everyday habit.

My favourite combination for the morning juice is a mixture of carrots, cucumbers, celery, apples, ginger, orange and beetroot.

Couple of weeks ago I stayed at Shangri-La Qaryat Al Beri and to my delight, a mobile juice cart came to my table at Sofra restaurant on both mornings and the waiter had a long chat with me about different combinations he does for guests as well. His recipes were awesome.

On my birthday I went to the Dubai Shangri-La for a chilled out breakfast and was thrilled to see they also started a juice station which I looked forward to the next morning…they made some delicious smoothies as well as power juices.

There are so many benefits of juicing. I also bought my baby sister a juicer last year which I hope she’s using.

Here’s to a healthier and vibrant lifestyle with juicing and to friends and family who will always be bound by this tradition.

Artesian Water takes top position

Weekend indulgence - ice-cream with FIJI water

A bizarre phone call from a middle aged woman left me smiling today asking what makes FIJI water one of the purest form of water on the planet (I’m getting close to 40 soon so I guess that would make me middle aged too although I like to think 40 is the new 20 and I’m just about to start my life with gusto).

Anyway, it was to ask if FIJI water really did keep you looking young and what was the big deal about artesian waters and the obsession by Hollywood stars to bee seen with one. Now I am no authority on waters but I have a penchant for enjoying FIJI Water because it reminds me of home and it has silica in natural form as well as Acqua Panna which also tastes so awesome.

The high rate of silica in Fiji Water supports the biological processes of the body. Silica is presented as regulating body temperature, carrying nutrients and oxygen to cells, helps remove waste from the body, dissolves nutrients and minerals, cushions joints and protects organs and body tissues. So its more for health reasons although I find that my skin has over the last 3 years improved heaps from drinking more water that happens to be mainly FIJI.

While most people in Dubai like Perrier or San Pellegrino, I merely put up with it because it happens to be available in most restaurants. I also like local water but when I have a choice, I always go for FIJI or Acqua Panna instead of Evian, Perrier or San Pellegrino.

I drink Acqua Panna more for the fresh revitalising taste and FIJI for beauty/health purposes. I recall getting a frantic call from a hotel asking where they could get Fiji water supplied for a Hollywood celebrity coming to Dubai as they risked losing the booking if they couldn’t supply FIJI water in the room. I pointed them to NTDE and started investigating why water from my country was such a HOT stuff amongst celebrities and I’m glad I did as now I’m sold into drinking FIJI water whenever I can.

According to US Food and Drug Administration FDA studies, FIJI’s artesian water comes from deep within the earth and never comes in contact with the air. (In fact, according to the Environmental Protection Agency, water from artesian aquifers often is purer than other water sources because the multiple strata of rock and clay provide a critical protective shield against potential contamination.)

In the case of FIJI Water, natural artesian pressure forces the water up and into a completely sealed bottling system, which has been designed to eliminate any contact with the environment….i guess that makes it super pure but whatever the case….I’m sticking to FIJI water and Acqua Panna and if it keeps me looking upbeat, young and energetic, then that’s a bonus!

Royal Jet and their challenging Medical Evacuation Mission

Although I generally don’t like talking about brands that clash with the business interests of our group members, this week I found myself questioning and going against that as I was reading about Royal Jet’s Medevac unit successfully completing a highly complicated medical evacuation mission as it flew 31 Chinese workers injured in explosions in the Republic of Congo to China – I thought that was very commendable and worth a mention.

Frankly speaking, I always saw Royal Jet as an international luxury flight services company more on the premium side without knowing that they also have a medical team. So it was an eye opener finding out that Royal Jet Medical Evacuation Service offers state-of-the-art equipment and highly-qualified, skilled and dedicated medical professionals….this clearly is the caring side of the brand.

So…the story is that using its fully equipped and expertly manned Boeing Business Jet aircraft, the Royal Jet Medevac mission landed in China after a 16-hour flight from Maya Maya Airport in Brazzaville, the capital of the Republic of Congo, following a brief stop in Abu Dhabi for fuel and crew change. On board were Royal Jet’s well-trained and highly-skilled Medevac team headed by Dr. Ibrahim Soto, Royal Jet’s Medevac Medical Director with five Chinese medical experts who were dispatched to Brazzaville by the Beijing government, shortly after the blasts to attend to the wounded.

The blasts apparently claimed more than 200 lives and injured over 1,500 and six Chinese workers out of about 140 working at a nearby construction site were killed in the blasts. The medical team arrived in Brazzaville and spent 15 hours stabilizing the patients before accommodating all of them safely in the aircraft.

In a nutshell, Royal Jet’s fleet of Gulfstream, Learjet and Boeing Business Jet aircraft covers the globe and tailor each mission to the patient’s medical needs along with specialists and highly trained medical team. While other Royal Jet’s product offering spans several operations including luxury air charter services and Royal Jet Charter Brokerage (providing travel solutions through sourcing the appropriate aircraft for charter), I find the Royal Jet Medevac side of their business great as it helps save lives.

Innovative concept from Gulf Craft for outdoor entertaining space

The dynamic guys at Gulf Craft Inc., the largest manufacturer of luxury yachts and fiberglass boats in the Middle East and Asia last Saturday showed VVIPs at its shipyard’s the largest ever hull construction – the Majesty 135.

I already wrote about the awesome 30th anniversary gala celebration we attended at Gulf Craft’s yacht manufacturing facility in the UAE … These guys know what they are doing and are the nicest, warmest people you will ever meet so its always a pleasure being with them.

The Majesty 105 is the latest in a series of revolutionary concepts created by Gulf Craft. It represents both, the degree of engineering, design and technological sophistication already achieved by the company during its three decades in the business as well as its ability to anticipate and meet the need for striking new superyacht concepts tailored to diverse cruising needs.

We had the exclusive opportunity to tour the striking blue-hulled, triple-decked superyacht which features 5 staterooms, including a luxurious owner’s stateroom, 2 crew cabins and one captain’s cabin, 8 bathrooms in addition to a dayhead. The Majesty 105 runs on 2 Caterpiller C32 rated engines and can reach top speeds of 27 knots.

The interiors are furnished in gold teak veneer with soft, light carpeting and furnishings in a sea-inspired colour scheme that gives a nod to Mediterranean elegance. Extensive exterior space – including an outdoor steering helm and a hard-topped sundeck fitted with comfortable sofa seating, a wet bar, fridge, icemaker and barbeque makes this the perfect yacht for outdoor entertaining.

Erwin Bamps, COO of Gulf Craft was of course in his element – rightly so as he has done an amazing job with all the arrangements for the unveiling of the Majesty 105.

According to Erwin, the Majesty 105 was conceptualized for the yacht owner who likes to spend the majority of his time above deck, With a steering helm on the sun deck and an interactive outdoor entertaining and lounging space, this is the sort of yacht that would allow you to spend time admiring the coast on an island-hopping itinerary or catch all the action moored alongside waterfront racing circuits like Yas Marina Circuit or the Circuit de Monaco. (I’m pretty sure my friends at Yas Marina will be delighted).

It was also superb to catch up with Sultan….a personality to watch out for in the future as he is one of the younger generation of Emiratis who will carry on the legacy and the amazing work of his family and forefathers. Especially as the younger generation have the support of industry stalwarts like Saeed Hareb, Nabil their teams and families.

All I can say is that this baby is awesome – I already tweeted some pictures of both Majesty 135 and Majesty 105 from the exclusive preview @Fijianchick. Enjoy!

With Saeed Hareb
Erwin Bamps, Saeed Hareb, Mohd Al Shaali & Nabil Farhat at the Majesty 105 launch


Xperia S and Armani moment

Getting a preview of the new Sony Xperia at Armani Hotel

On my way home from office today I was tempted by Rhazi to check out the new Xperia S smartphone at Armani Hotel, Burj Khalifa. This was his way of convincing the gadget diva why I didn’t need to carry an iphone, a blackberry, an ipad, a MacBook Air +++ in my bag at all times.

Naturally I am not one to ignore checking out new stuff and Armani is one of my favourite venues. So while rushing to make it to my bellydancing class, I went to play with Sony’s new toy. (Man that sounds dodgy – I’m glad Sony is not a guy)

The demonstration of the feature-rich smartphone highlighted key functionalities such as the ‘connected entertainment experience’. Offering seamless connectivity between all devices whether smartphone, TV, laptop or tablet and PlayStation, it is ideal to share and enjoy content.

The Xperia S sports ‘Iconic Identity’ is an innovative transparent design element at the base, that creates a simple, strong, instantly recognizable look with illumination effects and integrated antenna components. The user interface has been restyled to match the minimalistic design of the hardware and the home screen features a new colorful flow background making full usage of HD Bravia Reality Display and dual-core processing power.

I tested the camera – it was almost the same as my current Sony that is 12MP. Xperia S is set to deliver a stunning viewing experience with a high resolution screen, full Sony Bravia HD, powerful 1.5GHz dual-core processor for faster performance and a 12MP camera with Exmor sensor that takes pictures in just 1.5 seconds from standby mode. Nice aye! Diva likes…..heaps!

While I’m not about to give up my iphone and Blackberry right now in a hurry, Xperia S may just tantalise my gadget hunger palette…its great for people who want to make a fashion statement too….I love the look!

I liked the white one...matches my personal Apple computer and my white BB
Nice stuff - image courtesy the Xperia team in Dubai

The awesomeness of Yas Marina

How cool is this place - Image courtesy Yas Marina team

Whenever I venture towards Yas Island Abu Dhabi, people automatically think it is to fratenise with car manufacturers on the circuit – but diva is not only hooked on super cars….as an island girl, I love everything relating to the sea and my current favourite place to hang out in Abu Dhabi is the Yas Marina.

Now…it has been gut wrenching not tweeting or blogging about it but I did promise dear Jonathan when I do touch on it, it will be from the heart and I will talk about my adventures there from experience – unfortunately I have only been able to do whistle stop tours recently while testing the latest cars. (Yas Island is the best place to cruise around in open top convertibles in the evenings amongst other super cars that are there for a spin on the tracks).

Having orange juice with the GM of Yas Marina Cedric Le Rest during my lunch break at Radisson earlier in the year was the first time I got to know all about Yas Marina and the fabulous way its managed by Camper & Nicholsons Marinas. Samer from Yas as well joined us for a bit of laid back chat and between Samer, Cedric and Jonathan, I found out more about Yas Marina in that one hour than I had from all my adrenaline driven visits to the Yas Island.

Camper & Nicholsons is widely recognised to be one of the world’s oldest and most prestigious yachting business names, with origins dating back to 1782. The company has specialised in marina and waterfront development for over 40 years and has provided services to clients in more than 25 countries worldwide.

Their projects range from small marinas through to developments over 500 hectares. Camper & Nicholsons Marinas International Ltd is a wholly owned subsidiary of Camper & Nicholsons Marina Investments Limited, listed on the AIM of the London Stock Exchange. Camper & Nicholsons currently operate marinas in Abu Dhabi, Grenada, Italy, Malta and Turkey.

The guys at Camper & Nicholsons are awesome – they recently announced that berth occupancy has doubled in the last 6 months and Cedric believes its due to their extremely competitive annual berth rates – which now includes an F1TM berth.

The best bit here is the VIP Privilege Card that offers berth holders a variety of discounts and value added services to Yas Island facilities. The 2012 Annual Berth rates (starting from 16,455 AED inclusive of a berth at 2012 Formula 1™ week) and the 2012 Formula 1™ Etihad Airways Grand Prix berthing tariffs which start from 10,395 AED. One superyacht to have recently taken an annual berth at Yas Marina is the 95m Indian Empress.

The competitive tariffs, coupled with the success of Yas Island Show Weekends, featuring international superstars such as Madonna, Janet Jackson and Elton John have helped to reinforce Yas Marina’s position as an attractive home port for yachts of all sizes.

Yas Marina features a variety of dining and entertainment options ranging from fine dining at Cipriani or Yotto, to more casual settings like Stars ‘N’ Bars and the vibrant Allure Night Club by Cipriani. I absolutely love Cipriani and it was everything Cedric had said about it to me months before.

Located at the heart of the Yas Marina Circuit on Yas Island and located 10 minutes from Abu Dhabi International Airport, 20 minutes from central Abu Dhabi and 45 minutes from Dubai, Yas Marina has 143 berths for yachts up to 150m in size.  Visitors to the marina can enjoy easy access to pristine coastlines, 200 uninhabited islands and the nearby cosmopolitan cities…….looks like a place tailor made for diva!

Rixos on Palm Dubai

Entrance to Rixos Palm Jumeirah

Couple of days ago, on my way to the Literature festival, I popped over to see bubbly Maria who had invited me over to check out Rixos Palm Dubai, part of one of the world’s fastest luxury hotel chains. I was overwhelmed by all things Turkish in a really pleasant way and had a wonderful tour by her, particularly the spa area which I think everyone knows is my biggest weakness – I can never have enough hamman experiences.

This new Rixos is certainly set to cater to UAE’s ever growing luxury leisure tourist market as well as business travellers seeking refreshing locations beyond the mainstream downtown addresses. Located on the tip of the Palm, (our very own Eighth Wonder of the world), Rixos The Palm Dubai truly salutes the daylight under astonishing 360 degree ocean views.

I loved the strikingly landscaped gardens along with the stunning beach promenade area featuring a Lounge for lunch and tapas (Ah…those Spanish days – I still cant believe that despite owning a home in Spain, I last ventured there 3 years ago. Its become my forgotten home and I’m constantly looking for golf players to go there and use my home so I feel less mad every time my agent tries to throw dodgy tenants my way. There are 3 world class golf courses 5 mins each way and 2 blue flag beaches – you would think someone would want to chill out there. Especially me but I never seem to have enough holidays in place)

I also loved the concept of Suite Beach which is a heaven of privacy for lovers away from the buzz plus a Family Beach catering to families.

The hotel’s interiors entail a modern minimalist approach blended with exclusive high-tech Innovative design elements featured in all aspects of the rooms and residences striking a balance between modern and comfortable. My twitter pic already have a preview of the awesome rooms – I adore four poster beds and while my private one has a antique feel, I also loved the modern version in the hotel’s suite.

A La Turca is the hotel’s authentic Turkish restaurant where  genuine Turkish dishes from the Aegean and the Black Sea as well as from Eastern Anatolia….i loved their seafood heaps.

Returning to the lobby, I was amusingly greeted by a bloke in a costume from the Rixy Club which is dedicated into turning children’s experiences to memorable moments through age tailored entertainment programs….no humorous comments about me looking young…its all in my head and this dude must have picked up on my young vibe.

I am a spa junkie – so as a Spa fanatic I can’t wait to try the world renowned Rixos Royal Spa that has several treatment rooms, bringing a myriad of treatments and rituals, its signature one being the Turkish Hamam, delivered with great authenticity from true Rixos Turkish heritage.

This island spa junkie can’t wait to be scrubbed to oblivion as long as a massage comes with it! Looking forward to my proper Rixos experience.

View from Rixos on my Blackberry
Living area of the suite