Romance In Singapore

Romance in Singapore

This February, love is in the air, especially in Singapore where the Chinese Valentine’s Day, which is the 15th day of the Lunar New Year, coincides with the Western Valentine’s Day.

To commemorate this occasion, I sought to uncover some of the most romantic spots and activities where you can savour the best of Singapore while enjoying the company of your loved one.  These are my top 3 recommendations:

The Jewel Box Cable Car Dining
I particularly love this because you get to enjoy a private dinner with your loved one high up in the sky with a panoramic view of the vibrant Singapore city and Sentosa Island below you.  It is certainly a remarkably memorable experience to watch the glistening lights below.  You will truly feel the romance of spending quality time in a space which you can call yours exclusively for the evening.

Romance in Singapore

Be My Valentine: A Spa Villa at Capella Singapore
Last week, I had the pleasure of having a preview of the Be My Valentine package here at Capella Singapore.  Now this is romance!  Enjoy one of Capella Singapore’s romantic villas for the weekend, which has been completely transformed with romance in mind.  This weekend getaway includes in-Villa Auriga spa treatments, a special Valentine’s dinner at The Knolls and even a one-hour photo-shoot to memoralize the weekend.  Of course there is plenty of champagne and chocolate as well.  Frankly, I can’t imagine a more romantic way to spend the holiday!

Take A Trishaw Ride Though Singapore
In my book, nothing says romance more than a whimsical tour though Singapore’s rich colonial heritage.  Trishaws are bicycle drawn carts, an evolution of the rickshaws, which were used as transportation for the wealthy in old Singapore.  Today you can cosy up to your loved one as you take a ride though some of Singapore’s most culturally rich places like Chinatown – just you and your partner, and of course your friendly trishaw guide who’ll be eagerly share fascinating historical tales.

If you would like to know more about any of these couple’s activities in, please approach your Capella Singapore Personal Assistants who would be pleased to share their favourite romantic haunts in Singapore.

Changi Airport

Changi Airport

As I settle back into the swing of work in the New Year, I can’t help thinking back on my travel adventures of 2012 as I start planning for the ones to come.   For me the adventure begins in the airport.  And lucky enough, Singapore’s Changi Airport is truly one of the best.

With the increasing demand in international flights, Changi Airport was first opened in the 1980s with only one terminal. Since then, Changi Airport has grown to become an award-winning hub featuring three beautifully designed terminals.  A fourth terminal is slated to open in 2017 and I am excited to find out what that new terminal will have in store.

Changi Airport

Changi Airport’s three terminals are connected by sky train, which makes it easy to hop between them.  I always believe that the vacation really starts at the airport and I have to say that Singapore’s Changi Airport really is a retreat, simply because there are just so many things to do!

To begin with there is a wide assortment of restaurants throughout the airport.  Singapore is a foodie haven and Changi is no exception.  Everything from local fare to Western cuisine can be found throughout the terminals.  You can experience the world’s flavors without ever getting on a plane!

Changi Airport 2

But it isn’t just the food that makes Changi Airport special.   It also features a whole array of lifestyle and leisure activities.  There is a salon, a spa, a swimming pool and so much more.  There’s even a nature trail!  Could you imagine going for a hike then getting your hair done during a layover?!

Clearly Changi Airport is not your average travel hub.   It really is a great introduction to Singapore and hopefully a destination you will have the chance to visit.

Taxco, Mexico: A Silver Town

Taxco

Taxco is a lovely small town 3 hours away from Capella Ixtapa, located in the hills between Acapulco and Mexico City.  It has retained its natural charm and colonial ambiance, characterized by red-tiled roofs, cobble-stoned streets and the impressive 240-year-old Santa Prisca Cathedral.  I love to wonder the streets and explore the city, but the strongest feature that attracts me to Taxco is its silver history.

Taxco_3486

The colonial city was founded in 1529, and in 1531 the first Spanish mine in North America was founded.  According to legend, Don José de la Borda arrived to town on a horse in 1716 from France at the age of 16, when his horse stumbled, dislodged a stone and exposed silver.  After amassing a silver fortune, Borda built The Templo de Santa Prisca as a gift to Taxco.  The church can be seen from all over Taxco.  I love to sit at one of the lovely cafes or restaurant terraces to admire it as it glitters in the sunlight.

Taxco

During Mexico’s Independence Fight, the Spanish barons destroyed the mines rather than lose them.  With most of the silver gone, Taxco became a quiet town with a dwindling population and economy.  That changed in 1929, when an American architect William Spratling arrived and set up a silver workshop as a way to rejuvenate the town.  Spratling motivated the community artisans to create designs and rediscover the silversmith tradition.  The workshop evolved into a factory, and Spratling’s apprentices began establishing their own shops.  Today, Taxco is home to hundreds of silver shops, which I love to explore!

Every November, Taxco organizes the world famous Silver Fair, when craftsmen, artists and silversmiths show their work and a national prize is awarded to the best silver artist.  This is a particularly impressive event and a time of true artistry!

When in Taxco you may want to visit also the Spratling Museum, the Museo Virreynal de Taxco, The Old Arches and of course the Santa Prisca Cathedral.  Ask your Capella Ixtapa’s Personal Assistant to organize a visit for you!

Taxco, Mexico: Una Ciudad De Plata

Photo by Flickr user Dennis Elliott.

Taxco es una pequeña y hermosa ciudad a 3 horas de distancia de Capella Ixtapa, ubicada en las montañas entre Acapulco y México D.F.. Taxco ha sabido conservar su ambiente colonial y encanto natural, caracterizado por sus techos de teja roja, calles empedradas y la majestuosa Catedral de Santa Prisca con más de 240 años de antigüedad. Me encanta perderme en sus calles y explorar la ciudad, pero la mayor atracción para mí de Taxco es su historia con la plata.

Taxco_3486La ciudad colonial fue fundada en 1529, en 1531 se abrió aquí la primer mina en Norteamérica. De acuerdo a la leyenda, Don José de la Borda (que llegó de Francia en 1716) montaba su caballo y este sin querer descubrió yacimientos de plata al golpear las rocas con los cascos. Tras amasar gran fortuna, Borda construyó la Catedral de Santa Prisca como regalo para Taxco. La iglesia se puede admirar desde cualquier punto de Taxco. Me encanta sentarme en una de las terrazas de cafés o restaurantes a admirar como brilla con la luz del sol.

TaxcoDurante la guerra de Independencia, los españoles destruyeron las minas para no perderlas. Con la mayoría de la plata ausente, Taxco se volvió un pueblo tranquilo con una población y economía bastante mermada. Esto cambió para 1929, cuando el arquitecto americano William Spratling estableció un taller de plata como medio para reactivar el pueblo. Spratling motivó a la comunidad de artesanos a crear nuevos diseños y redescubrir la tradición del trabajo de la plata. El taller evolucionó en una fábrica, y los aprendices de Spratling comenzaron a establecer sus propios talleres. Hoy día, Taxco es hogar de cientos de tiendas y talleres de plata los cuales me encanta explorar!

Cada Noviembre, Taxco organiza la mundialmente famosa Feria de la Plata, donde artesanos, plateros y artistas muestran su trabajo y un premio nacional se otorga al mejor artista. Este es un evento muy especial y lleno de verdadero arte!

Cuando estés en Taxco visita también el museo Spratling, el Museo Virreinal de Taxco, Los Arcos y por supuesto la Catedral de Santa Prisca. Pregunta a tu Asistente Personal de Capella Ixtapa que organice una visita para ti!

A Day Trip To Barra De Potosi

IMG_7738

I love all the little escapes that I can take in Ixtapa.  There is just so much to explore!  Recently I shared about the beautiful Isla Ixtapa, and this week’s location is equally beautiful.

After hearing many stories about Barra de Potosí I had to visit for myself.  According to one of Capella Ixtapa’s Personal Assistants, this is a picturesque beach.

Barra de Potosí, a small beachside village, is like a time warp.  It is a very quiet and relaxing place, nestled at the southern end of Playa Larga and about 35 minutes south of the Ixtapa-Zihuatanejo.  Barra de Potosí has an endless fine-sand beach and a large lagoon brimming with bird life.  You can swim, take boat trips, rent a kayak and paddle around the estuary or go horseback riding.

 Enramadas (or palapas) line the beach.  I found an open one where I relaxed in a hammock and enjoyed amazing local seafood specialties.  If you have the chance to go, try the pescado a la talla (broiled fish fillets) or tiritas, and don’t miss out on the savory handmade tortillas!

If you are a surfer, stop by La Barrita, a shell sized village on an attractive, rocky beach 10 minutes southeast of Barra de Potosí.  Not many tourists stop at this village, but this and Loma Bonita beach are some of the best local spots for surfing.  During my visit I was able to catch some great waves!

I really enjoyed my escape to Barra de Potosi.  I hope one day you get to visit this special town!

Images via Flickr user Loxy