3 Things I Learned On A Luxury London Dessert Tour

Written by Jaillan Yehia. Posted in Art & Culture, Europe, Food, London, News, Opinion, Shopping, United Kingdom

London dessert tour

Fortnum & Mason on my Urban Adventures London dessert tour

I turn tourist for the day and try out one of Urban Adventures’ London day tours.

And despite covering some well-trodden West End ground, I learn 3 things that even as a native Londoner I had NO idea about – until now – all while munching on lovely Ladurée macaroons along the way.

Read on to see if you’ll learn something new too…

In Photos: 30 Reasons To Love Menorca

Written by Jaillan Yehia. Posted in Balearic Islands, Continents, Europe, Food, Menorca, Opinion, Photo Journeys, Shopping, Spain, Worldwide Vacation

Love Menorca

A cool souvenir from Cova d’en Xoroi

I really fell in love with Menorca on my recent trip to the island – so much so that I am seriously considering a repeat trip very soon, and am dreaming about house hunting there because it’s just that gorgeous.

So here are 30 reasons to love Menorca – little insights into why you can and should fall for the Balearic’s most tranquil island

Pretty Ballerinas Make Girls Holidays To Menorca A Shoe-In

Written by Jaillan Yehia. Posted in Art & Culture, Balearic Islands, Continents, Europe, Menorca, Shopping, Spain, Worldwide Vacation

Pretty Ballerinas

Pretty Ballerinas on sale at the factory outlet in Menorca

The very first thing I spy after landing in Menorca, and exiting those double-doors that spit you out of security and into your holiday destination, is a tall pink leaflet dispenser advertising Pretty Ballerinas shoes.

Of course like any self-respecting girl, the idea of shoe shopping while on holiday – possibly at a discount – has my interest piqued immediately.

But as I’m with a group  – consisting mainly of men – I decide to leave it until later to work out if my hunch is right that the high-end ballet pumps which are beloved of celebs must be manufactured on this very island

Hidden Artisans of Rome: The Restoration Game

Written by Jaillan Yehia. Posted in Continents, Europe, Italy, Roman Artisans, Shopping

Art restoration Rome

An art restorer at Pavia Restauro Studio at work

Imagine trying to get job satisfaction when the best testament to the skill of your work is no-one having a clue you’ve done anything at all.

This bizarre ideal is, I learn while meeting a husband and wife art restoration team in Rome, the ultimate goal within the intense world of fine art conservation

Diamond *Experts* Are A Girl’s Best Friend: A 7 Step Guide To Diamond Buying

Written by Jaillan Yehia. Posted in Art & Culture, Continents, Europe, Italy, Roman Artisans, Shopping, Worldwide Vacation

The perfect engagement ring

The perfect engagement ring?

It’s like a dream come true for a girl to visit not just one but 12 Italian jewellery stores and learn about gem stones, design and precious metals from classically trained Roman jewellers.

It’s even more perfect when these happen to be Rome’s best hand-crafted jewellery boutiques, all on the official list of the 28 best shops in Rome.

So when this recently engaged girl went shopping for a ring in Rome she asked a lot of questions about diamonds: such as what to look out for and what to avoid.

If you’re thinking of buying a diamond or gem stone ring, necklace or any other form of precious jewellery, don’t even think about making a purchase until you’ve read this Italian guide to diamond buying and soaked up the wisdom of one of Rome’s premier jewellers…

It’s Official: These Are The 28 Best Shops In Rome

Written by Jaillan Yehia. Posted in Continents, Europe, Italy, Roman Artisans, Shopping

Roman Artisans

Rome

Italy is of course famous for food, but its cities are also celebrated for iconic fashion, classic style and luxurious shopping.

So when I was asked to spend a weekend in Italy, meet the 28 best artisans in the Eternal City, and visit the best shops in Rome, it was an invitation I was unlikely to turn down.

Here’s what you need to know if your travels take you to Rome and you’d like to indulge in some serious shopping in some secret and special spots…

Hidden Artisans Of Rome: Dante’s Celebrity Inferno

Written by Jaillan Yehia. Posted in Art & Culture, Continents, Europe, Italy, Roman Artisans, Shopping, Worldwide Vacation

Dante Mortet

Dante fires up yet another celebrity hand

He’s shaken the hands of every celebrity you can think of from Quentin Tarantino, Robert De Niro and Angelica Houston to Kirk Douglas, Jennifer Jason Leigh and Samuel L. Jackson – the list goes on.

But unlike the average fan, Dante Mortet has gone on to make bronze sculptures of those very hands, becoming one of the Hollywood elite’s favourite artists in the process. 

This Roman craftsman is a sixth generation Italian sculptor whose family began making chalices for the Pope 120 years ago.

So from the old gods of Christianity to the new saints of celebrity, when it comes to making something precious out of molten metal, this Dante’s Inferno is the real deal.

Step inside for an access all areas pass to a truly hidden part of Rome

All I want for Christmas is……To Visit 10 European Christmas Markets

Written by Jaillan Yehia. Posted in Austria, Belgium, Christmas Travel, Continents, England, Europe, Food, France, Hungary, News, Opinion, Perfect Places To Stay, Photo Journeys, Poland, Shopping, Slovakia, Sweden, Switzerland, Top Ten Travel Tips, Ukraine, Wishlists, Worldwide Vacation

Brussels at Christmas

Brussels at Christmas

At the start of winter I usually struggle with the idea of weekends away to colder European countries – ever clinging onto that last bit of winter sun.

But that all changes come Christmas when I’m a sucker for short breaks to snowy cities and can’t wait to hit the European Christmas markets to stock up on stockings, buy more bobbly hats and glug down some Glühwein.

Here are my recommendations for the best Christmas markets in Europe

Discovering The Vancouver Flea Market

Written by Jaillan Yehia. Posted in Americas, British Columbia, Canada, Continents, Photo Journeys, Shopping, Vancouver

Vancouver Flea Market

Vancouver Flea Market

One of my favourite things to do in a new city is poke around at a flea market for nik-naks to bring home, especially in places where the cost of living is high; in Asia and Africa shopping is cheap and souvenirs are easy to pick up anywhere. Here in Vancouver and in European cities too it’s easier to find a bargain at a flea market, and it can be a lot of fun and far more rewarding than buying a mass produced piece.