Volunteering for Strictly…

By Ingrid Miller,  guest writer for Unwind and let go.

Volunteering for StrictlyI’m glad I didn’t listen to my dad, his advice has always been never to volunteer, but there I was, a volunteer member of the Parents Association of my children’s school. “We need a new soft surface playground” the Principal said. An emergency meeting of the Kitchen Cabinet was convened – in my kitchen. After a few glasses of wine and some serious brainstorming we agreed as a team to take on “Strictly”. As the bottles were emptied, our confidence grew… and so

it began.

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The Delamar Hotel Spa in Greenwich Connecticut

Delamar Hotel SpaAs part of a recent work assignment on location in Greenwich Connecticut, the schedule included (much to my joy!) a complimentary treatment at the Delamar Hotel spa. Located on the waterfront, the hotel overlooks a pretty marina with fancy sailboats and kind of reminds you of a laid back Summer postcard. Having flown long distance to get there,  I opted for a Swedish massage as my treatment du jour. Perfect for weary travelers but not too demanding for already jet lagged muscles.

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Exfoliation at the Bulgari Hotel Milan

Bulgari HotelAs part of my recent Detox program, I upped the ante on my regime by including a body exfoliation at the luxurious Bulgari Hotel when I was last visiting Milan. Located in one of the nicest parts of the city, the Bulgari Hotel overlooks beautiful botanical gardens and is reputed to be the most exclusive hotel in the city.  I visited it on a quiet Sunday afternoon and observed many elegant guests in the lobby and adjoining spa. I chose my treatment carefully from the extensive spa menu and settled on the creme dela mer inspired ‘La mer signature body treatment with exfoliation’ to apparently ‘renew, relax and restore’ my body.  I don’t normally use the La mer range of products, but with a diamond component, I was happily anticipating beautiful shimmery skin by the end of my treatment.

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Enjoying the new spa at Ashford Castle

By Natalie McGuinness, guest writer for Unwind and let go.

The spa at Ashford Castle was reviewed by The Irish Times shortly before I visited, so my anticipation levels were raised based on the glowing feedback. The spa is a cleverly designed glass annex like an orangery for cultivating beauty and relaxation, tucked away in the west of Ireland. My first visit to the Spa was for an emergency file and paint.

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Tips on Long Haul Travel

By Joanie Bergin, guest writer for Unwind and let go

Tips on Long Haul Travel

Over the years I have traveled long haul extensively for both business and pleasure. The most important thing I have learnt from various trips around the globe is to be kind to people you meet along the way. I cannot convey how wonderful and unexpected things can happen when you either offer help to someone or offer a friendly smile. No matter what your mood is when you start your journey or even the booking process, my tried and tested tip is to always be polite and show goodwill to the airline staff, airport staff and other passengers. A thank you or a smile to even the cleaners in the bathrooms brighten their days when so many people can be dismissive. Believe me the goodwill comes back in terms of better seats, upgrades or a nicer meal from the first or business cabin and higher quality snacks. I still remember the time my flight was cancelled and rather than staying overnight in Frankfurt I asked to be routed via Hong Kong, met a friend for coffee and chat and got home to my Malaysian apartment 10 hours before my rescheduled flight was due to land. Trust me, kindness works every time!

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A Spring Detox – The Clean Program

The Clean ProgramIt seems my urge to declutter extends also to myself, and about a month ago I started a detox program. Designed to boost energy, heal the gut and of course remove nasty toxins from your body, detox programs come in many shapes and sizes. I went with the The Clean Program, beloved by Gwyneth Paltrow and Goop followers, and when I was last in the US, I picked up the Clean detox pack and started the very next day.

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Photographing San Francisco

Photographing San FranciscoI spent an early morning dawn photographing San Francisco with Doc Miles Photography on a recent trip to the city by the bay. Doc collected me from my hotel at 5.00am and we whizzed off in his brand new range rover with cameras and tripods to catch the sun rise. Fortunately I had been wide awake since the early hours with a mix of jet lag and anticipation but felt reasonably confident and alert for the adventure. Our first stop was Bay Bridge which spans San Francisco Bay and dates back to the 1930’s. As it shimmered in the street lights, I set up my camera and stared into my viewfinder only to see pitch black. It took me a few moments to realise to my utter embarrassment, I had forgotten to remove the lense cap from my camera. Having fumbled around to fix that, myself and Doc quickly established that I was in truth a complete rookie and this was in fact my first attempt at capturing cityscapes.

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