thailand,

PHUKET WITH RADISSON BLU

Panwa beach view from Radisson Blu Plaza Phuket hotel

Having only five hours in Singapore after coming back from Vietnam (including my sleeping time), I only managed to take a shower, change to a new outfit, unpack the luggage and pack again for the new destination. 6 am calling time, I was up and ready to catch the next flight to Phuket and spend my weekend with Radisson Blu. 

I've been to Phuket a few times and am pretty familiar with every corner of Patong beach. But, staying away from the Patong beach madness for a real rest and relaxing vacation was something I've never done before. That's why I was actually looking forward to spending my time at Radisson Blu Plaza Phuket (let's just call it Radisson Blu Phuket)  

A first impression only comes once and Radisson Blu Phuket sure knows how to make your first impression unforgettable. Right after I walked out of the terminal building, a private car was ready to take me to the hotel. Look at what I found: Wifi in the car. 


Radisson Blu Plaza Phuket hotel private car pick up with free wifi

It took me a while to realize that there was wifi in the car. At that first moment, I was sold and completely believed that my weekend would be wonderful already. For someone who is constantly connected with social networking like me, having awifi on the go was the best luxury I could ask for. 

The short 40-minute drive from the airport brought me to this place. Grand entrance as a grand welcome to Radisson Blu Phuket.  

Radisson Blu Plaza Phuket hotel entrance

Stepping inside the larger-than-life sized lobby, I noticed there were two entrances to the hotel. One facing the main road and the other facing a beautiful ocean. Radisson Blu Phuket is a private beachfront resort that is positioned against the gorgeous Makham Bay, offering endless white sands, blue skies, and ocean views.  

Radisson Blu Plaza Phuket hotel lobby

 Oliver Gires, the best hotel ambassador I could ask for, greeted me at the entrance by my name and quickly gave me an introduction about the hotel facilities and areas. He even went extra miles to offer taking photos of me, which was exactly what I needed. Some of the beautiful photos below were courtesy of Oliver. 

One unique thing I noticed during my 3-day stay at Radisson Blu, every staff has a "Yes I can!" pin on their uniform. When asked, one of the employees told me that this is a service philosophy that sets Radisson Blu apart from their competitors. Whether you are in Thailand, Dubai, Zurich or Chicago, you are assured to receive excellent service and undivided attention from the Radisson Blu team. 

How impressive it is! 

Crystal Phuong chilling at Radisson Blu Plaza Phuket hotel lobby

A welcome drink tasted so much better with a view like this. 

Radisson Blu Plaza Phuket hotel welcome drink

June is in the monsoon season in Phuket with increasing rainfall. I was told that it had been raining all week long until I came. The sun came out, the sky was clear and the weather was just beautiful. It's perfect for having a margarita while admiring the panoramic view of Panwa beach from the deck. 

Crystal Phuong at Radisson Blu Plaza Phuket hotel

Calling this place home for my weekend in Phuket. 

Radisson Blu Plaza Phuket hotel villa room

Every day we would have a different bed decoration and complimentary local food offered by the hotel. This towel swan couple made me feel like I was on a honeymoon trip. 

Radisson Blu Plaza Phuket hotel room, towel swan couple decoration

Full wall mirror and a sliding door wardrobe that looked like a mini walk-in closet. I haven't seen this in any hotel I've been to, have you?

Radisson Blu Plaza Phuket hotel mini wak in closet

The bathroom was even more spacious.

Radisson Blu plaza Phuket hotel spacious bathroom with big bathtub


Radisson Blu Plaza Phuket hotel bathtub in villa room

If this is not called Luxury, I don't know what is.  

Radisson Blu Plaza Phuket hotel beautiful bathroom interior

We even had our private pool. 

Radisson Blu Plaza Phuket hotel private pool in villa

If only I could bring this pool to Singapore, I'd be doing nothing but this. 

Crystal Phuong chilling at private pool in Radisson Blu Plaza Phuket hotel villa

Couldn't help but dip in. 


There were more facilities and activities in Radisson Blu Phuket that anyone could ask for. A fully equipped gym for a fitness lover. 

Radisson Blu Plaza Phuket hotel gyms facilities

How about yoga in the pool? This was the second pool in the hotel. 

Radisson Blu Plaza Phuket hotel second swimming pool

The first one, facing the ocean, is awarded as the largest lagoon pool in the island. 

Radisson Blu Plaza Phuket hotel lagoon swimming pool

Radisson Blu Plaza Phuket hotel beautiful swimming pool

But if you are not into sun-tanning or swimming, you'll love chilling by the pool, looking over the pristine beach while having your favorite cocktail offered by the pool bar. When I was there, there was a one for one offer and that made it even better. 

Radisson Blu Plaza Phuket hotel, cocktails at pool bar

There were a few restaurants around the hotel that offered spectacular food that made me feel like I didn't need to get out of the hotel for lunch or dinner at all. The only time we went out for dinner was when we visited Patong Beach at night.  

Crystal Phuong at Azu restaurant, Radisson Blu Plaza Phuket hotel

Thai food was good, but it was even better at Radisson Blu Azu restaurant. The service was wonderful, the location was amazing, the food was delicious, and the company was beyond perfect, I couldn't ask for anything better than that. 

Dinner at Azu restaurant, Radisson Blu Plaza Phuket hotel

Even the buffet breakfast the next day at Aqua restaurant was one of a kind. Oliver and Bjorn (Hotel General Manager) came to say hi to us a couple of times and to make sure everything was okay.

Buffet breakfast at Radisson Blu Plaza Phuket hotel

The last day with Radisson Blu, Oliver offered to take more photos of me (and my outfit) and brought me around the hotel. After a long and hot walk, we ended up at this quiet deck. While Oliver was busy snapping the camera shutter, I was lucky enough to have a few quiet moments captured through his lens.


This amazing trip was truly a reward for me for embarking a career change in my life. I was so ready to go back and to start my new journey on Monday. 

Thank you so much Radisson Blu for your wonderful hospitality. 
If you are looking for a relaxing vacation and being away from the busy touristy area in Phuket, Radisson Blu Plaza Phuket hotel is the best recommendation I'd love to give to you. 

Thank you so much for reading!  

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travel,

HAI PHONG

Not as crowded as Ho Chi Minh and neither as touristy as Hanoi, Hai Phong, the third most popular city in Vietnam, seems to be quieter with impressive rays of colonial buildings and red flamboyant trees growing abundantly along the streets. These vibrant trees are now a Hai Phong's trademark and whenever someone says "The city of flamboyant trees", everyone knows that they are talking about Hai Phong.

I was born and raised in this coastal city until I was 18 and then moved to Hanoi and started a life of an adult. Although, Hanoi was more fun with lots of attractions (and temptations), but a part of me is always with the quiet city, Hai Phong. Whenever I have time,  the first thing that always comes to my mind is going back home.

Two weeks ago, I packed my luggage and left Singapore for Hai Phong. There is always a reward in everything, including this beautiful sunrise as a compensation for a very early morning flight.



Travel in style. Jumpsuits are the best outfits for traveling. 


Getting ready to board. Excitement was up in the air. 


Three hours later, I was home. 


The best welcome-home gift from the most adorable human being. 


Making an effort to try as many famous food in Hai Phong as possible even if it meant I'd have extra few pounds later. This fried fish noodle soup is to die for. If you have a chance to drop by Hai Phong, you have to try this.


Never really rest even when I was on holiday. 


Lunch again with more vegetables and healthy food. If you happen to be in Hai Phong, you should definitely try the brown noodle and crab meat soup (we call it Banh da do), or grilled pork with rice noodle and spring roll (Bun cha)


I have finally declared that one of the must-do things, whenever I'm in Hai Phong, is getting a manicure done. You won't believe how much these sparkling nails cost me. 


$20 hard gel nails that look like a million bucks. It would cost me $120 to $160 in Singapore otherwise. 


On the second last day in Hai Phong, I wanted to bring Miu to the Do Son beach (he loves beaches) to celebrate his birthday. Do Son used to be my favorite beach when I was small and now it becomes Miu's favorite one. He kept running around, playing with the crashing waves and laughing non-stop. Kids are the best example of we can be happy with the simplest things in life. 


While my Dad and my brother were busy taking care of Miu, my mom and I went for a walk to explore the new area. 



I lived in Hai Phong for 18 years and visited Do Son beach many times. This was the first time I watched the sunset on this beach. I pulled out my phone, took a photo of the sunset and posted it on Instagram. I was surprised at the comments I received a few moments later: "Wow! So beautiful. Where is it?". I replied them proudly "It's my hometown". 

Many times, we take things for granted. I guess it's never too late to start appreciating. 


Thank you so much for reading! 

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Crystalscloset,

LAID BACK


Having ten precious days in between jobs, I decided to pack my bags and to reward myself with some short getaways. The first destination immediately popped up in my head (whenever I have a time off), was always Vietnam. That’s how much I crave for quality time with my family and some kisses from my adorable nephew, Miu

I spent six days in Vietnam, did nothing but sleeping, eating, watching TV, and of course, playing with Miu. He is the most fun, energetic, and loving boy that I’ve ever seen. He kept kissing, hugging, and asking me to stay back home with him.  On the second last day, we headed to Do Son beach to be tourists for a day. It was my childhood’s favorite place to go and now becomes Miu’s favorite one. While my Dad and my brother were busy catching the little monster (my nickname for Miu) running around the beach and playing with the crashing waves, my mom and I went for a walk to explore the new area. 

As you can see from the photos, it was a pretty quiet day in Do Son despite the weekend. People have a very simple lifestyle here. There is never a rush hour or cars honking sounds in the traffic jam. No matter how busy and occupied my mind could be, a laid black place like this would always take me off from the working mode and remind me to relax as much as I can. 

What did you do when you just quit your job? 











Thank you so much for reading!

::Outfit::
ZARA denim shorts- Similar  here
Forever21 straw hat- Currently obsessed with this one
Jeffrey Campbell lace sandals

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