Tag-Archive for ◊ Auckland hostels ◊

21 Aug 2010 This Christmas, Be Pampered at Chuan Spa – Langham Place Hotel, Mongkok, Hong Kong

11 December 2006, Hong Kong —- This Christmas, Langham Place Hotel’s Chuan Spa launches an array of indulgence packages and festive offers, perfect as a pampering treat for yourself or a festive gift for your loved ones.

Christmas Indulgence Packages
Relax and refresh for the festive season with our special Christmas packages featuring holistic spa treatments complemented by all the festive trimmings, including a cheerful glass of champagne, a Thalgo gift set, and even a complimentary health club membership! The Packages start from HKD$1,300.

*See Appendix 1 for more details on the packages.

Christmas Gift Ideas
Purchase gift vouchers and receive a free spa treatment
Chuan Spa offers a variety of treatment and cash vouchers, perfect as gifts for all occasions.
In the month of December, you can enjoy a complimentary 30-minute Back and Shoulder Massage or a complimentary 30-minute Thalgo Express Facial upon purchase of Chuan Spa gift vouchers valued over HKD$1,200.

Glittering Thalgo Gift Boxes
This Christmas, Thalgo launches a collection of glittering gift boxes inspired by sparkling diamonds. Packed with skincare products with all the benefits of marine ingredients, this collection is an ideal gift to pamper your loved ones.

*See Appendix 2 for more details on the collection of gift boxes.
12 Days of Christmas at Chuan Spa
To celebrate the 12 days of Christmas, Chuan Spa will give you a nice little surprise every day from 25 December 2006 to 5 January 2007.

Date Promotion
1 25th December 06 A complimentary Thalgo gift set and a glass of champagne with any treatment over HKD$1,200
2 26th December 06 20% off all Chuan signature lifestyle retail items
3 27th December 06 25% off all Chuan Escape Packages at off-peak hours
4 28th December 06 30% off Thalgo Oceanic Enhancement Facial
5 29th December 06 1 month complimentary Chuan Spa Health Club membership with any treatment over HKD$1,200
6 30th December 06 All guests will enter a lucky draw to win a night stay at Chuan Residence with 1 hour 30 minutes of spa treatment time
7 31st December 06 All guests will enter a lucky draw to win a night stay at Chuan Residence with 1 hour 30 minutes of spa treatment time
8 1st January 07 30% off Tao Of Detox Package and a complimentary detox juice
9 2nd January 07 A complimentary hydrotherapy session with any 90 minutes signature massage
10 3rd January 07 Complimentary personal training session with any treatment over HKD$1,200
11 4th January 07 20% off Chuan Energy Package
12 5th January 07 A complimentary 30 minutes Back and Shoulder Massage or a Thalgo Express Facial with any treatment over HKS$1,200

Chuan Spa
Address: Level 41, Langham Place Hotel, Mongkok, Hong Kong
555 Shanghai Street, Mongkok, Hong Kong
Reservations: 3552 3510
Email: hkg.lph.info@chuanspa.com
Website: www.chuanspa.com

Chuan signature massage in VIP Suite Thalgo’s collection of glittering gift boxes

Appendix 1 – Christmas Indulgence Packages
Chuan Christmas Retreat HKD$1,500
? 2 hours 30 minutes of Chuan holistic treatments of your choice
? Upgrade to VIP Suite with 30 minutes private Jacuzzi time*
? A glass of champagne served with mince pie
? 1-month complimentary health club membership**
? Thalgo gift set
? Use of swimming pool, sauna, steam room, oriental hot tub and fitness studio
? 2-hour valet parking

Chuan Christmas Cracker HKD$1,300
? 1 hour Chuan Vitality Body Exfoliation
? 1 hour Chuan Signature Stone Massage
? A glass of champagne served with mince pie
? 1 month complimentary health club membership**
? Thalgo gift set
? Use of swimming pool, sauna, steam room, oriental hot tub and fitness studio
? 2-hour valet parking

*Subject to availability
**Terms and conditions apply

Additional 20% discount when booking Monday to Friday 10am – 5 pm.
Offer valid from 1 – 31 December 2006

Appendix 2 – Glittering Thalgo Gift Boxes

The Youthful Diamond Set $980 ( Normal price: $1,330)
- wrinkle control smoothing care
- wrinkle control smoothing concentrate
- Diamond Powder

The Exceptional Diamond Set $2,200 ( Normal price: $3,080)
- Exceptional Cream
- Exceptional Serum
- Diamond Powder

The Oriental Diamond Set $830 ( Normal Price: $1,210)
- Indoceane Sublime Cream
- Indoceane Luxurious Massage Oil
- Indoceane Herbal Tea
- Candle

The Water Diamond Set $ 980 ( Normal Price: $1,320)
- Energising Vitality Cream
- Absolute Rehydrating Serum
- Moisturising Eye Care
- Diamond Powder

Background Notes:
Langham has a legendary hotel heritage dating back to 1865 when the Langham Hotel in London originally opened as Europe’s first Grand Hotel. For 140 years, this flagship hotel has been at the forefront of sophisticated and gracious hospitality. Today, all Langham Hotels worldwide inherit the same philosophy that reflects elegance in design, innovation in hospitality, genuine service and captivation of the senses creating a truly unique hotel experience.

Langham Hotels International (LHI) features six properties with over 2,700 rooms in five gateway cities across the four continents, namely, London, Boston, Hong Kong (2), Melbourne and Auckland. In each city Langham Hotels is associated with the prestigious “The Leading Hotels of the World” group which represents some of the world’s finest luxury hotels.

LHI is wholly owned by Great Eagle Holdings Limited, a publicly listed company (HKSE: 41) which was founded in 1963 and was listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange in 1972.

For information of Langham Place Hotel, Mongkok, Hong Kong, please visit:
http://hongkong.langhamplacehotels.com

For information on the The Langham Place Hotel, Hong Kong, please visit: hongkong.langhamplacehotels.com

About Langham
Langham has a legendary hotel heritage dating back to 1865 when the The Langham Hotel in London originally opened as Europe’s first Grand Hotel. For 140 years, this flagship hotel has been at the forefront of sophisticated and gracious hospitality. Today, all Langham Hotels worldwide inherit the same philosophy that reflects elegance, continuous innovation and genuine hospitality creating a truly unique hotel experience

About Langham Hotels International:Langham Hotels International (LHI) features six properties with over 2,700 rooms in five gateway cities across the four continents, namely, London, Boston, Hong Kong (2), Melbourne and Auckland. In each city Langham Hotels is associated with the prestigious “The Leading Hotels of the World” group which represents some of the world’s finest luxury hotels.

LHI is wholly owned by Great Eagle Holdings Limited a publicly listed company (HKSE: 41) which was founded in 1963 and was listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange in 1972.

02 Aug 2010 Things To See On Your Holidays In Pitcairn Islands

Located in the southern Pacific Ocean, the Pitcairn islands is the last British overseas territory in the pacific. The islands remained uninhibited in the 15th century. Later, the Polynesians started settling down in the islands. History says that the mutineers of the Bounty and Tahitian companions are kidnapped from Tahiti and they set fire to the bounty. You can enjoy a moderate climate all the year round in the Pitcairn islands.

Holidaying in the Pitcairn islands, first include an air travel up to Mangareva in the Gambier Islands. There are no airstrips in the islands and you can begin your vacation in the Pitcairn islands with the help of the cruise ships. Apart from the commercial cruise ships, there are many private yachts carrying tourists to the Pitcairn islands.

The island has a very small population with about 50 permanent inhabitants who are the descendants of the mutineers and their Polynesian wives. As there are no ports or airports, the island remains unexplored. There are no safe anchorage and lodging place in the island and it requires permission from the administration in the Auckland. After getting the appropriate permission, you will be provided with lodging and other facilities. There are no hotels in the island and you can enjoy the stay in natural homes. The inhabitants of the island are very friendly and hospitable.

You need to spend a few days to get to know about the Pitcairners and explore the unexplored land. From the Pitcairn Island, you should sail to the Henderson Island if you want a special excursion. The Henderson Island is uninhibited and it is a world heritage site. If you are a water enthusiast, you will love this place, enjoying snorkelling and scuba diving. Bird watching is another popular tourist activity here and the island has numerous unique species of birds.

The major activity of the islanders is collecting honey and this honey is claimed to be disease free pure honey that cannot be tasted anywhere else in the world. Because of this reason, the tourists are not allowed to bring any bee related items to the Pitcairn islands. The details of the history and the bounty can be found in the beautiful museum at this place.

The island has a great source of income from philately. Holidaying to Pitcairn Island can be slightly expensive but you can enjoy a great visit to one of the tough world heritage sites.

The Islands are becoming more and more popular with holiday makers coming here on a family holiday and staying in self catering holiday home accommodation. Luxury villas with swimming pools and self catering holiday apartments are available to rent.

23 Jul 2010 Finding Hotels Across New Zealand

New Zealand is a very big country and consists of two main islands (the North Island and the South Island) as well as free associations (the residents of which are citizens of New Zealand) and various smaller islands. Finding hotel accommodation is therefore very much dependant on where you wish to stay and how much you are willing to part with for accommodation. Auckland is the country’s largest and most populated city located on the North Island. It is a popular tourist hot spot in addition to which houses the busiest air port in the country. Most flights landing in New Zealand do so at the Auckland International Airport. There are a great number of tourist attractions in the city from amphitheatres, stadiums, the Auckland Town Hall, The Auckland War Memorial Museum, Kelly Tarlton’s Underwater World and bridges as well as numerous natural volcanic cones. Auckland is the country’s commercial hub and is one of the most expensive places to stay at. Hotel rates are high and this is especially true during summer which is the peak season.

Summertime is the most pleasant time to visit the cool region of New Zealand. This is what most visitors to New Zealand do and this is when the hotel rates skyrocket. Advisable to visit the country during the off season as hotels will be reasonably cheaper.

Hotels are possibly the most expensive living arrangement that you could choose. But they also offer much more privacy, comfort, luxuries such as cable television, Internet access, telephone lines, gyms, pools etc and a variety of services from catering all meals (an especially good way to experience the local cuisine) to room service, laundry services etc. A very comfortable option for business people who are in the country on work and do not have to time to do all this on their own.

Many hotels across New Zealand offer you up to twelve months advance bookings. This is convenient for those people with a fixed purpose and agenda. It is also a good way to book your living arrangements before the rates begin to sky rocket.

In case you don’t trust your travel agent to make the right decisions for you are absolutely free to peruse the World Wide Web at your leisure to locate the best deal for yourself. Hotels are found aplenty all across the country even in the smallest towns so you will not be hard pressed to find something that suits your tastes and budget. Since there are so many hotels across the country they are always competing with each other which are beneficial to the customers. They normally offer several discount rates and schemes by which you can arrange for rooms at reduced prices. or example students can almost always get reductions on producing an I card for proof.

The rates also depend on the kind of room and number of rooms that you wish to rent. A modest room with minimum luxuries and a single bed will definitely cost less than a suite with kitchenette, en suite bathroom, television and the like.

Almost all hotels rooms can now be booked as well as paid for online. It is also possible to book a room online at the very last minute though at an extra fee.

04 Jul 2010 New Zealand Motel – Uniquely New Zealand

A New Zealand motel could be the right type of accommodation that you have been looking for. You could choose from budget, family or luxury accommodation and no matter which type you choose they will all offer you friendly service and a comfortable bed. You will find many motels in Wellington, Napier, New Plymouth and North Shore no matter where you choose to stay you will be made to feel very welcome.

Motels Auckland

What a beautiful area you have chosen to spend your holiday in. Auckland and surrounds have some vibrant scenery just waiting for you to experience. Motels North Shore is a very popular area located next to the water. So if you like water sports or sun baking and relaxing by the sea you can not go wrong especially if you have decided to stay here.

Motel Rotorua

If you are thinking of exploring this lovely area of the North Island, accommodation in Rotorua could prove easy to find especially if you book in advance to ensure a bed when you arrive. It can get pretty hectic in the peak season and booking in advance is one way of making sure you get Rotorua accommodation suitable to your needs and your budget.

Motels Wellington

So, the capital city is where you have chosen to stay for your holiday. Wellington has a lot of different types of accommodation to offer you. There is a lot of sight seeing here and night life. The city lights at night are simply superb. The best thing is accommodation Wellington has a lot of different types to offer you for your stop here, whether it is for just a night or a week, you can be assured of a comfortable stay. There are tours on offer to see the city by night or you could venture out by your self to enjoy the sights on offer. Take a trip across Cook Strait and stay in a Blenheim motel where you can enjoy a more relaxed atmosphere for a few days.

Christchurch Motels

Once you have arrived in the South Island it will be easy to find that special Christchurch motel or hotel that you have been looking for. Hotels in Christchurch are friendly and comfortable and you are sure to find one suitable to your needs. This part of New Zealand is just waiting for you to explore. You will find it easy to travel and stay at a Timaru, or an Invercargill motel where the welcome mat is out waiting for you.

Dunedin Motels

There could be a Dunedin motel room just waiting for your occupancy. This area of New Zealand has much to offer the tourist like hiking and tours and water sports. Close to this unique area of New Zealand you can find picnic areas and other places of interest to the family.

When you have the right type of accommodation your holiday will be long remembered. So, where are you? Your New Zealand motel is waiting for you!

02 Jul 2010 The Regions of New Zealand

Where is New Zealand, exactly? New Zealand is two islands in the Pacific, but it is not a Pacific Island.

All those islands we normally think of as “Pacific”: New Caledonia, Fiji, Tonga, the Cook Islands, and Tahiti, lie between 15 and 23 degrees South.

They are north of the Tropic of Capricorn…

… New Zealand is south of it. By a long way.

New Zealand stretches from 35 to 47 degrees south, and covers 270 000 square kilometres. It is:

the size of Burkina Faso, Colorado, Equador, the UK, or the Western Sahara
twice the size of Bangladesh, Fujian Province (China) or Greece
four times the size of Sri Lanka
half the size of Madagascar, France or Kenya
and would fit comfortably into the Caspian or Baltic Seas…

Some geography…

For the sake of convenience, we can divide up the country into 2 degree bands of latitude. Down here, the numbers get bigger as we travel south. And it gets colder. Down here, birds fly NORTH for the winter…

The regions of New Zealand fall into these bands as follows:

34-36 Northland
36-38 Auckland, The Coromandel
38-40 Bay of Plenty, Waikato, Rotorua, Taupo, Eastland, Hawkes Bay, Wanganui-Manawatu, Taranaki
40-42 Wellington, Wairarapa, Marlborough, Nelson
42-44 The West Coast, Canterbury, Christchurch
44-46 Mt Cook-MacKenzie, Wanaka, Queenstown, Otago, Dunedin, Fiordland
46-48 Southland, including Stewart Island

What else can you find at these latitudes?

Following the same bands of latitude around the Southern Hemisphere, the regions of New Zealand share their parallels with:

34-36 Buenos Aires, Adelaide and Canberra in Australia, and Cape Town in South Africa (in fact, Cape Town is NORTH of the northern-most point of New Zealand, and Sydney is the same…)
36-38 Auckland and the Coromandel lie in the same band as Melbourne
38-40 Bay of Plenty, Waikato, Hawkes Bay, Manawatu, Taranaki cover large slices of Argentina and Chile
40-42 Wellington, Wairarapa, Marlborough, Nelson – more Chile.
42-44 West Coast, Canterbury (Christchurch) are neighbours with Hobart
44-46 Otago, Southland (Dunedin) is the same as… Patagonia! (just look at the landscapes to see why…)
46-48 more Patagonia…

The Northern Hemisphere

While it’s not an accurate comparison, New Zealand is in the middle of the ocean with no part of it further than 130 kilometres (about 80 miles) from the coast, in the same bands of latitude in the Northern Hemisphere you will find (moving north):

34-36 Cyprus, Kabul, Tokyo, Los Angeles
36-38 Seoul, Tunis, Athens, San Francisco
38-40 Ankara, Beijing, Lisbon
40-42 Istanbul, Tashkent, Madrid, Rome, New York
42-44 Almaty, Vladivostok, Sofia, Toronto, Boston
44-46 Bordeaux, Milan, Belgrade, Bucharest, Ottowa
46-48 Geneva, Seattle

Now you know where you’re heading. All you need to do is get here…

http://www.luxury-new-zealand.com/flights-to-new-zealand.html
About the Author

Stephen Hay invites you to explore the opportunities for luxury travel and accommodation in New Zealand.

The site, http://www.luxury-new-zealand.com/, brings together all luxury offerings in New Zealand. Private jet companies, charter yachts, luxury rental cars, luxury adventure holidays and 165 luxury lodges, resorts and boutique hotels for your enjoyment.

26 Jun 2010 New Places to Live and Retire Around the World

Places to Live in the World: Emerging Alternatives

From Canada to Europe, Africa to Asia, it’s time for a fresh look By Phillip Townsend

The advent of fast Internet communication and inexpensive air travel makes it easier to turn any far-flung paradise into a permanent home. Which places in the world have the most to offer? The perfect place to live or retire, of course depends on your idea of perfection.

I’m taking a different approach for this article. Instead of giving an overview of the better-known and increasingly-popular expatriate destinations around the world (Mexico, Costa Rica, Belize, Panama, Nicaragua, Ecuador, France, Spain, Portugal, Italy, etc.), I’ve decided to introduce you to the below 7 locales you probably don’t know much about. All offer affordability and abundant recreational and cultural opportunities.

Nova ScotiaJust east of Maine, in the North Atlantic, Nova Scotia’s pristine coast is slowly becoming a sought-after affordable getaway. Only two hours from New York or Boston, it feels a world away. A pleasingly crowd-free province on Canada’s Atlantic Coast, little-known Nova Scotia could just be the perfect full- or part-time retreat. Halifax, the capital, has been luring tourists for years. Waterfront cafes, European architecture, and spectacular seafood keep them coming back. Nova Scotia’s Cape Breton Island boasts the some of the best scenery in the world, from the picturesque highlands to the picturesque Bras d’Or Lake (pronounced “bra door”), with the Atlantic Ocean as a backdrop. In the winter months, the Gulf Stream keeps the climate milder than most northern U.S. states, with the area more rain showers than snow storms. Picture the American East Coast a century ago, and you get a feel for what Nova Scotia is like. Almost an island, it is best known for its stunning coastline, sleepy seaside towns and friendly people. The province’s natural beauty, cheap real estate and low cost of living make it well worth a look: oceanfront lots start at $10,000, three-bedroom homes on acreage from $50,000. A lobster dinner with a bottle of good local wine set you back no more than a twenty spot. Scenes of the Hollywood blockbuster Titanic were shot in Nova Scotia, and celebrities including Jack Nicholson, Demi Moore and Billy Joel maintain summer homes here.

CaribbeanAlmost everyone has had dreams of living a laid-back, stress-free life on a tropical island. One by one, the Caribbean islands were discovered and eventually became sadly over-developed, terribly over-crowded, and ridiculously over-priced. Unfortunately, due to mass tourism, most places in the Caribbean have become little more than artificial, tropical Disneylands with luxury hotels and all-inclusive resorts. But there is one place that still maintains its original charm and natural beauty. This place is quite inexpensive (by Caribbean standards) and is virtually unspoiled. Relatively undiscovered, here, you can still find ocean view lots for as little as $22,000 and have a small cottage built for prices starting at $25,000. To protect it from the fate of its Caribbean cousins, I won’t reveal the name of this special place just yet. You can find a link to more information at the end of this article.CubaThink Cuba, and vivid images come to mind: of men in Guayabera shirts and Panama hats, tropical breezes and cool drinks, steamy Latin rhythms and sultry women. It has always been an intriguing place, steeped in truth and in fiction by the novels of Ernest Hemingway. Because travel to Cuba is restricted by the U.S. government, relatively few Americans visit the island each year. While their counterparts from Europe, Canada and Latin America bask in the warm Cuban sun, most U.S. citizens can only hope to experience this “pearl” of the Caribbean after Castro is gone. Of those who do manage to get to Cuba via Mexico or Canada, few are disappointed. The largest Caribbean island (pop. 11 million), Cuba is also one of the most beautiful and unspoiled. There are miles of pristine, underdeveloped beaches, tropical forests teeming with wildlife and some of the best deep-sea fishing, scuba diving and snorkeling the world has to offer. And there is Havana, not only the capital of Cuba, but also long the most important city in the Caribbean. With tourism once again thriving, Havana has regained much of its past allure. Famous old bars, restaurants and hotels are enjoying a proud comeback, and stunning new places are being built. As one taxi driver put it, “We have the best cigars, best rum, best music, and most beautiful women in the world. What more could anyone want?”

RomaniaBest known for Transylvania, the legendary home of Count Dracula, Romania is steeped in history, myth and folklore. Unlike other Eastern European countries with Slavic origins, Romania, whose name means ‘land of the Romans,’ absorbed much of the culture, religion, and language of the Roman Empire. Bordered by the Black Sea (which is being called “The Next Riviera”) and the Danube River, with the Transylvanian Alps and Carpathian Mountains nestled in the center of the country, Romania has long stretches of seacoast, mountains, forests, medieval villages and gothic castles galore, giving it all the makings of a fairy-tale setting. The capital Bucharest, a former communist citadel, has a growing number of discos, while restaurants at most major hotels double as nightclubs, there are several Parisian-style cafAs, and cheap wines and plum brandy flow freely everywhere. Due to its wide boulevards, sidewalk cafAs, and Triumphal Arch, Bucharest, was known as the “Paris of the Balkans” prior to World War II. Today the city’s 19th century neoclassical architecture and numerous tree-lined streets still maintain its charm. A sizable enclave of foreigners (Germans, Jews, Turks, Russians, Ukrainians, Serbs, Croats, and Gypsies) live in Romania. French is the most widely-spoken second language and English is spoken by many of the younger generation. The real estate prices are some of the lowest in all Europe (the country’s economic woes spells opportunity for you).

Malaysia

Asia’s best-kept secret for expatriates, Malaysia has a vibrant mix of foreign and indigenous tribal cultures, creating a veritable melting pot of peoples, traditions and religions. A sizable enclave of foreigners (Brits, Americans, Australians, and Canadians) live full time or maintain holiday homes in Malaysia, and you’ll find that just about everybody speaks English, since its compulsory in local schools. Not only are three world-class playgrounds (Thailand, Bali, and the Philippines) all within a few hour’s travel from Malaysia, but miles of beaches and numerous coastal islands add to its tropical appeal. Despite being the capital of a developing nation, Kuala Lumpur is a modern cosmopolitan with clean streets and every modern convenience to found in New York or London. Compared with other major Asian cities (Tokyo, Singapore, and Hong Kong, for example), Kuala Lumpur is downright cheap. The cost of 2-bedroom rental apartments begins at around $225 per month and 3-bedroom houses start at $35,000. Naturally, comparable housing in expatriate communities or the luxurious homes that date from British colonial period can set you back considerably more.

New ZealandImagine an interesting land of breathtaking and contrasting scenery: craggy coastlines, golden beaches, lush forests, snow-capped mountains, bubbling volcanic pools, fish-filled rivers and glacier-fed lakes, all beneath a brilliant blue sky. New Zealand is accessible, spread over three relatively small islands with modern and efficient transport, quiet roads, plenty of flights and two stunningly scenic rail journeys. Other pluses are friendly, English-speaking people, virtually no crime, and a trio of rich cultural influences: adventurous Polynesian navigators (Maori), pioneering European settlers who followed a thousand years later, and modern Pacific Rim immigrants. The plant and animal life are unmatched, giving opportunities for close-up experiences with birdlife (including kiwis), seals, dolphins and whales. Enjoy the chance to explore two of the richest wine regions on the planet, taste wonderful cuisine, stroll on sandy beaches. Prefer urban living? Immerse yourself in the culture of the capital Wellington or the large cities of Auckland or Christchurch.

TanzaniaMany people tend to associate African countries with wars, famine and political unrest rather than the good life, but Zanzibar, Tanzania is an exception. Located only a short distance off the east coast of Africa, exotic Zanzibar has lured explorers, traders and colonists for centuries. The islands’ powdery white sand beaches, swaying palm trees and turquoise waters continue to attract European and Asian tourists. Outside of an unusual mix of black African and Arab cultures, you’ll find the islands teeming with tropical forests, remote villages and idyllic coastline. Despite flare-ups between residents of Zanzibar Island and the smaller island of Pemba (due to differing views on unification with the mainland), Zanzibar is usually quite stable. Cheap real estate (oceanfront or raw land with fruit trees), mouth-watering seafood, some of the world’s best scuba diving, and pure tropical bliss make it an attractive expatriate haven. A few wealthy Europeans and African aristocrats have already made Zanzibar and mainland Tanzania home. Why not join them?

RESOURCES

For more information about living abroad, visit: www.nsliving.info

For travel articles and news from countries around the world, visit: www.worldcountries.info

About the Author

Phillip Townsend, an international reloacation consultant, is the author of Passport to Canada: The Complete Guide to Living and Retiring in Nova Scotia, and the special report The Caribbean’s Best Kept Secret. His website is www.nsliving.info

21 May 2010 How To Live On A Cruise Ship Part Time

There has been a lot of buzz lately about living on a Cruise Ship full time as an alternative to living in a retirement home.

However, I don’t think it would be very exciting after about 6 months or so.

Ships, even Cruise Ships, are noisy for at least 2 reasons:

1. Engine Noise.

No matter how new the ship, no matter what new turbine engines the ship may have, the 24 hour engine noise may get to people.

2. Parties, bars and restaurants.

There is always a kind of party atmosphere on a Cruise Ship, people eat and drink too much, nobody tells them when to go to bed, they don’t have to get up the next morning, so, parties make noise.

It gets boring staring at the ocean 2 out of 3 days.

Although ship’s activities are very many these days, after a while you’ll get bored with them.

Cabins in general are very small, so after a while you’re going to miss your large living room on the mainland with its 75″ TV.

However, if 6 months are too long, there are other alternatives; Cruise maybe a couple of months a year.

If you follow that action things become interesting.

Here are some options:

The Monthly $18,000 route:

Residensea, the world’s only floating Condo, a 47,000 ton cruise ship which sails the oceans,

reportedly offers staterooms for rent for as low as $18,000 per month.

This Cruise Ship has designer apartments with original art.

I mean, this is luxury personified.

Great if you can get it.

Around the world in 102 Days.

By small Luxury Cruise Ship

In 2005 a trip around the world lasting 110 days could be had for as low as $15,600 per person.

That is $150 per person per day including food and all facilities. That is $9000 per couple per month.

This same couple would spend a minimum of $4000 a month in an old folks home.

So going on this 3 1/2 month World Cruise would cost them $9000 – $4000 = $5000 per month.

Now let me tell you what this $5000 for 2 people gets them:

The Itinerary:

Southampton ,Tenerife – Canary Islands St Vincent – Cape Verde Islands Fortaleza – Brazil Rio de Janeiro – Brazil Montevideo – Uruguay Buenos Aires – Argentina Puerto Madryn – Argentina Port Stanley – Falkland Islands Cruise around Cape Horn Ushuaia – Argentina Transit Beagle Channel Punta Arenas – Chile Chacabuco – Chile Puerto Montt – Chile Santiago – Chile Cruise by Easter Island Cruise by Pitcairn Island Papeete – Tahiti Bora Bora – Society Islands Pago Pago – American Samoa Lautoka – Fiji Islands Noumea – New Caledonia Brisbane – Australia Sydney – Australia Eden – Australia Philip Island – Australia Melbourne – Australia Hobart -Australia Transit Milford Sound Dunedin – New Zealand Christchurch – New Zealand Transit Marlborough Sound Wellington – New Zealand Auckland – New Zealand Nuku ‘Alofa – Tonga Apia – Western Samoa Christmas Island Honolulu – Oahu, Hawaii Kahalui – Maui, Hawaii Los Angeles – USA Acapulco – Mexico Huatulco – Mexico Transit Panama Canal Curacao – Dutch Antilles Margherita Island – Venezuela Barbados Ponta Delgada

The Luxury:

This is on a very luxurious Cruise Ship that has only outside or balcony cabins.

By Freighter

In 2005 a trip around the world lasting 102 days by various freighting companies could be had for $11,750 per person.

That is $117 per person per day including food and all facilities. That is $7000 per couple per month.

This same couple would spend a minimum of $4000 a month in an old folks home.

So going on this 3 1/2 month World Cruise would cost them $7000 – $4000 = $3000 per month.

For this you get a double suite with double occupancy.

Port Times range from 1 to 2 days.

The advantage seems to be that there is lots of space in four double suites.

The double suites all consist of two rooms, a bedroom with twin beds and a living room.

The cabins have showers.

Each cabin also has its own VCR and TV monitor and refrigerator.

On board facilities are a private passenger lounge and the sharing of the officers’ table

There is also an indoor swimming pool.

Cruise Hopping

This is cheaper yet.

There are lots of 7 day cruises for about $100 per day per passenger.

So you could conceivably take 7 day cruises continuously in the same area, say, the Caribbean, on the same ship, or on different ships until you get sick and tired of the area.

You can then do the same thing from the West Coast.

Logistics would be more difficult because you may need a place to stay every 7th night.

Discount Cruising

Effective in 2005 there is now a discount European Cruise Line operating in the Caribbean that charges $46 per person per night but you have to get your own food.

Maximum time they allow you to cruise is 2 weeks.

Still, can’t get any cheaper than this.

12 May 2010 Vector Arena- Experience Boundless Fun and Entertainment

Integrated with plush amenities and traditional architecture, the much anticipated Vector Arena finally stands out as the prime venue for a variety of entertainment and sports events. The completion of the establishment bought some of the best performers to the city and was also the venue for many prestigious sports events ranging from netball to gymnastics. The arena is adorned by some of the best entertainment of great magnitude and these include rock concerts, classical performances, opera, ballet and family shows.

The initial event at the arena was the Rock Star Supernova concert and since its inauguration the Vector Arena has attracted giants in the entertainment as well as the sporting industry. As New Zealand’s largest multi purpose, indoor, all weather arena, the venue has opened new doors to entertainment in New Zealand and stands in par with other such world class establishments.

Ideally located in Auckland, the largest and most populated area in the country, the arena is fit to accommodate over 12,000 people in its outstanding performance space at the heart of the facility and it can also be transformed into a theatre or an inviting concert venue for smaller audiences.

The captivating architecture and artwork of this venue was inspired by Tohunga Titahi of Ngati Whatua, the indigenous people of New Zealand and owing to these traditional attributes and modern amenities the Vector Arena surpasses as distinct venue of traditional charm and ultra modern facilities. Within the premises is Bristo Arena which is great to enjoy a relaxing interlude with excellent cuisine and stunning views. The arena is conveniently located near a number of Auckland hotels, among which the Corpthorne Hotel Auckland HarbourCity claims to be one of the finest. With innumerable events taking place, the Vector arena in New Zealand is a splendid entertainment destination that should not be overlooked.

29 Apr 2010 Teaching English in China

The First Teaching Job in China by Mark Dykstra

Its February 24th, 2003, in a 40 degree humid heat, i stepped off the train in Hangzhou City. I gasped for breath, as i dragged my western worldly belongings trying to maintain a fix on where my Teaching Manager was. Void of a teaching certificate, void of speaking any Chinese and having absolutely no teaching experience or confidence, to be able to stand up in front of 10 students, let alone what would become 2000 students at one time, i was at the mercy of the elements of Chinese society. Like a small spaceship in Saturns asteroid belt, i just let the millions of frantic chinese citizens meld around me and i was lost in the fray, however after a miracle of bearing i found my Chinese Manager, the man himself who was to trust my blaringly ignorant and drastic lack of qualifications, i was whisked into his run down Mazda Coup and taken to the nearest restaurant to feed on the latest of the day live prawns, swimming in Rice Wine, and bouncing about like gipsy moths, hardly able to grasp my chop sticks after my train lagged trip from Guangzhou, i navigated my teeth over the best place i would take my first bite of the struggling and squirming prawn. It was then i realised i was making my first crunching bite into the unknown of what Chinese life was all about.

We made our journey to Huzhou City where i would begin my first 6 months teaching assignment at the Huzhou Technical College where Hundreds of students waited patiently for me for my arrival. My pre booked and paid up 3 bedroom apartment was luxurious compared to my flat back home in Auckland and everything was clean and tidy with wide open spaces. I have never felt so dignified and honored to have such new and wonderful decor and fittings that represented China so well. A beautiful, large pane of smoked glass showed the elegant engrained potrait of a Dragon intertwined in a woods seperated the living room and large bedroom. My office itself had the floor area of a 2 bedroom house. Does China really have such fantastic, modern, and lavish western standards built into its current day architecture.? The answer i found was a resounding yes, and what i found as time moved on was this clash of culture with western traditions that China had so intricatly developed in house and apartment design.

I found my life style within China expand dramatically, and i was able to travel first class by air, and by train and to travel by taxi and buy the best food

26 Apr 2010 Auckland Art Gallery

 

The principal art gallery in Auckland, New Zealand, this venue features the most extensive collection of national and international art in New Zealand. The gallery was established in 1888 and was the first permanent art gallery in New Zealand. It still remains the largest art institution in the country to date, and features a collection that numbers over 12,500 pieces of artwork.

 

The gallery consists of two different buildings, the original building is known as the Main Gallery while the new gallery is located opposite. The Main Gallery opened as the city’s free Public Library and Municipal Offices. It was only later on in that same year that a section that was dedicated to art was opened. Over time the prominence of the art gallery and its popularity lead it to take over the entire building which had been enlarged while the city library and municipal offices had moved to a nearby building.

 

Because of its historic origins the building proudly demonstrates itself as an impressively powerful structure featuring grand old style architecture. One of the strongest components of this regal quality is the impressive and enormous clock tower that is the highest point of the building.

 

The New Gallery that is located directly opposite was opened in 1995 and was originally designed to function as a telephone exchange. However after some intensive remodeling was undertaken the building was fit for usage as a contemporary art gallery.

 

The art gallery like many other institutions of its kind regularly hosts different exhibitions that relate to different themes created by various artists. In addition there are also special programs that only require the payment of the standard exhibition fee but involve special meetings with artists, discussions with industry experts and more.

 

Staying in one of the Auckland hotels that is located nearby this destination such as Langham Hotel Auckland allows guests to easily access this destination and several others that are located in the area.