Recommendations

Recommendations, Thoughts

“I just need some time, in a beautiful place, to clear my head.”


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Considering everything I have going on at the moment, I recently decided that I would have to make some personal changes in my life in order to keep up without damaging myself. Having experienced burning out, and the downsides of panic attacks since sometime back in my early high school days, I do what I can to make sure these feelings don’t take over. That I remain in control at all times. It’s the second stress, commitments and guilt takes over, that our bodies start shutting down from over-exhaustion and chooses flight when given the choice by our internal ‘fight or flight’ system.

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The trick is apparently to meditate every single day, ideally around the same time. It’s sort of like taking anti-depressant medication — don’t stop just because you feel good. Personally I tend to be mindful on some days, and dedicate the 5-10 minutes that it takes to this, and on some days I honestly couldn’t care less. This is obviously sort of the worst idea ever when it comes to setting a new routine…

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Find a good location. Doesn’t have to be dead silent or anything. But maybe good to leave your dogs and boyfriends outside the room. Especially if you’re like me and get easily distracted.

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First time I meditated, I started crying. And not one of those teary eyed and slightly emotional cries, no–more of the howling type. Seriously. What 30 seconds of deep breaths does to you – and the fact that we so rarely do it – is not something you can ever imagine until you’ve given it a go yourself…

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There are a bunch of meditation and mindfulness apps which are great in helping you get going. They break it down to the nitty gritty details, and help you feel at peace even when your mind wanders (trust me, it does). I prefer this app. It’s called Headspace. They have these ‘mini’ exercises for people ‘on the go’. This includes things like 1 min breathing exercises, 2 min to unwind, 2 min of focus, and 3 min to restore. This is stuff designed for you to do in a public place, or at the office.

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Isn’t it incredible, what 3-5 minutes of conscious breathing does to you? Especially on a day like today, when I’m too under the weather to go for a workout, which is usually my way of unwinding and letting go of thoughts. If you’re a stressed or anxious person by heart (I am), there’s honestly nothing I recommend more.

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I guess that means I’m ready to kick off this Saturday?

Happy meditation, and good morning guys!

Food, Recommendations, Travel

Our stay at Vida Downtown in Dubai


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As you know, I’m in Dubai, having a long weekend before a friends wedding outside the city. I haven’t been back here since I was like 8-9 years old – let’s just say its a completely different city…

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We started our Saturday with late breakfast/early lunch at La Serra, which is attached to the hotel we’re staying at. We were both starving after having been up since 5.30.

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Whenever there’s burrata with cherry tomatoes and olive oil on the menu, be sure that it will be a part of my order…

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Saif tried the french toast that they’re apparently famous for here. To be honest, it slightly under delivered, but perhaps we had too high expectations from the start?

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We were both exhausted after not sleeping much for two nights before. I had come straight from Bangalore, and Saif retired from a work trip in Paris and Milan literally three hours before we went to the airport…

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La Serra is probably the number one recommended restaurant on all the lists I’ve been given from friends who come here a lot. Definitely try it if you’re in Dubai, they’ve apparently got a great dinner menu too, which I haven’t tried.

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After our meal, the room still wasn’t ready for check-in yet. We parked ourselves by the pool which honestly wasn’t a bad plan B at all…

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I love the table set up each of the cabanas have here. You can tan and work comfortably instead of having the laptop on your stomach, the way I end up most of the time when I work by the pool…

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Saturdays are basically like Sundays here, since Sundays are workdays. It was surprisingly empty by the pool…

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Saif had picked up a bunch of magazines for me at the airport in Paris. This defines luxury time for me – reading a magazine while tanning by the pool. Yum!

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How nice?

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Once our room was ready, the hotel manager came to inform us that they had given us a free upgrade of our room since they had kept us waiting for so long.

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Our room basically has a living room, dining room, kitchen and bedroom. Talk about customer satisfaction guarantee, when you make up for a delayed check-in by throwing us in the nicest suite ever.

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Only thing is, you’d want to spend a lot of time in a room like this obviously. Considering Saif and I are quite active travellers, we promised each other we’d spend at least one out of two nights somewhat in the room, enjoying our free upgrade…

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The room has two balconies too, overlooking the

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SUCH a comfortable bed by the way.

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The view from our balcony. What a gorgeous building, right?

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We can see the pool area from our room too. It looks a lot smaller from up here than it is in reality!

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Thank you Vida Downtown for the best room we could have ever asked for. What a treat, seriously.

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After the pool and the room intro, we walked along the main road towards Dubai mall, which is about a 10-15 min walk from our hotel. We stopped at a Lebanese restaurant, smoked hookah and ate the most amazing lunch…

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Heaven on a plate? Hummus with pine nuts, grilled garlic and pieces of veal. Just…wow.

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Switched out the fries for the grilled potatoes, for once.

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So much good food! Just writing about this makes me want to do it all over again.

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In India, a small piece of halloumi at the store is literally like 800-900 INR (around 110 SEK). So, I’ve made sure to get my fair share of halloumi while here…

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After finishing up lunch, we walked to the massive mall to stroll around and pick up a few things for the upcoming wedding.

I’ll keep updating you guys about our weekend here. I’ll also make sure I upload our Dubai weekend guide once we’re back in Bombay.

Again, a massive thank you to Vida Downtown hotel, for taking such amazing care of our stay. This will definitely be our go-to hotel in Dubai during our future trips here.

Fashion, OOTD, Recommendations

Loving my new babouches from MumbaiStockholm


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When I joined the company I work for as a product consultant two years ago, my very first client was an online jewellery brand. It being one of the first in India at the time, I found myself doing a lot of market research on similar brands abroad. One of the brands I ended up coming across, falling in love with, and often using to benchmark against, was MumbaiStockholm – a jewellery brand founded by a Swedish woman, Cecilia, who had spent some time living in Mumbai. Could it get any more spot on than that?

I reached out to Cecilia as soon as I found her very spot-on/perfectly-managed Instagram handle (which by the way, you must check out by clicking here). She offered to share her expert opinion, helped me out with my first questions as a brand new consultant in a brand new space, and since then we’ve kept in touch by liking each others photos and such…

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Until the other day, when Cecilia reached out for my address in India, to send me a pair of beautifully designed babouches by MumbaiStockholm. The package literally arrived within one week, which is by the way literally record breaking in India. I’ve never before received anything so fast from back home, so hats off to DHL for that. Won’t be using anything else for international shipments from this day onwards.

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The babouches came in this cute bag, and anyone who knows me knows how much I prioritise cute packaging. And by the way the packaging of their jewellery is actually what got me hooked on her products the first time I came across the MumbaiStockholm page.

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“Hanna! I hope you love your shoes!”

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I love the attention to detail, with the logo both inside the shoe…

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…and on the sole underneath.

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I couldn’t be more excited to be a proud owner of MumbaiStockholm’s babouches, and am so honoured that Cecilia thought of me all the way over here. My worry is always that Swedish brands will shy away from collaborating because I am based on the other side of the world. Cecilia + DHL just blew me and that thought far away. Easy peasy!

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I kicked off my Veja sneakers under my desk right away and slipped these cuties on. I couldn’t think of a better shoe to wear to the office, to lunch, for a day out with friends, and while traveling. These guys will definitely get to stomp across Mumbai grounds with me this year – back where it all started for MumbaiStockholm, too!

Thank you MumbaiStockholm!