Month: April 2015

Get in the know with… Taiba Al Nassar!

‘Flawless funk’ seems apt to describe Taiba Al-Nassar, with her bright blue hair and edgy fashion. The self-proclaimed shoe obsessive has a fresh, dynamic take on aestheticism in a way that transcends the typical ‘Middle Eastern girl does Western clothing’. Taiba’s dress sense shows distinct elements of urban chic, combining downtown fashion styles in a way that does not scream grunge, yet ultimately, her outfits are wonderfully resplendent of herself. They stand as an expression of her personal musings, inspirations, and affinities, rounded off loosely by in mode trends. Her blog, ‘The Urban Analyst’ offers novel style concepts for fashion-lovers in Kuwait and elsewhere, showcasing various ways that Taiba has translated inspiration from street art, and even architecture into her personal dressing. In Kuwait, appearance is everything, and its abundance of haute fashionistas means that Taiba visibly stands outside of the considered norm. Yet this has not equated to her being side-lined, rather she has her own spotlight to stand in, on a stage which is not yet crowded. Admittedly, she appeals to the fashion rebellious, those who revel in ambiguity of definition, but at the core of the industry, this is exactly what fashion is all about, and Taiba personifies this …

The Plate Review: Duck and Waffle

I think it’s safe to say that the Duck and Waffle is the most elevated dining experience that you can have in London! Located on the 40th floor of Heron Tower, guests must take a ride in a glass lift which shoots up the glass-front of the building. If you are scared of heights be sure to be facing the lift doors because looking out onto London as you whizz up is as dizzying as you can imagine it to be. We went specifically to chill out, revel in the view, and tuck into some dessert, so we didn’t order any mains. The restaurant itself is named after its signature dish, ‘duck and waffle’, which isn’t halal but it isn’t pork either, for those who don’t mind eating permitted meat. We ordered the traditional bread and butter pudding (DEAR LORD), baked Alaska, and three scoops of ice cream. Ok let me tell you this now: the trip was worth it for the bread and butter pudding alone. UF. It was hands down an 11/10. Now I (S) …

Travel Highlights: Montmartre/Paris

France is one of the most desirable destinations on the globe today. The European capital, is well known for its rich history, Gothic streets, language of love and its capital city Paris is a world within itself. No self-proclaimed globe trotters could have Paris far off the top of their list of places to visit; so of course Paris was a must go-to. Our Paris trip was decided upon one monotonous day in the university library. After several hours working on my final essay of the term, I (S) decided that a quick getaway was long overdue. (K) immediately agreed of course and the next week we were flying out! The journey from London took just under 2 hours on Air France, (not long at all). We stayed for three nights and four days in central-ish Paris and the city is simply stunning. It does not disappoint. Amongst the million and one ways that Paris could be described, we decided that the best way to capture the essence of Paris is ‘soulful’. When one walks …

Travel Highlights: Portobello Road Market

A day in Portobello Road market! Great Saturdays can be spent exploring the great vintage stalls, eating great street food, enjoying the live music, and generally just taking in the whole Market experience. Portobello is a must go to area, and for the Saturday Market, it is worth the trip. The Portobello Road Area has a lot of North African residents and they have definitely stamped their mark on the place…. we got amazing fresh falafel from one of the Moroccan stalls…heaven! Most visitors to London only get to see Regents Park Mosque which is central, but the Portobello Mosque is highly underrated in our opinion, and provides a quick prayer-pit-stop for market goers. Nearest tube station: Notting Hill Gate station Go here if you like: vibrant market-places, vintage everything, food-stalls/street food, North African fashion and food, buskers and street performers, trinkets and souvenirs                     

Travel Highlights: Apsley House

 Apsley House is located at Number One London… what an address!  The stately house is the home of the Duke of Wellington who’s descendants still live in a section of the house to this day. I (S), am obsessed with English heritage and can spend hours watching docu-dramas of all the English and European eras. So to walk around a preserved house which hasn’t been changed since the 1890s was absolutely amazing! The house is situated at Hyde Park corner facing the Wellington Arch, so with some planning one can stroll or cycle through Hyde Park and end up here. One can wonder around the art collections of the original duke of Wellington, and unsuspecting visitors may just find that the 8th Duke of Wellington is walking around the house with them. (Guides told us he sometimes tours the house). Apsley House offers audio tours, as well as knowledgeable stewards who roam the halls. Nearest Tube station: Hyde Park Corner  Go here if you like: art, history, English heritage