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razzledooda

razzledooda
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Member since: 09.09.2008

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    • Karen Millen / Highstreet Shopping / 9 Readings / 8 Ratings
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      19.03.2010 04:03
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      Pretty and pricey, but don't expect it to last

      Karen Millen is where I'd go for smart or fairly nice but not too expensive clothing (when on sale).

      The stores are designed to be sleek and spacious and instantly feel more upmarket than other high street stores. You do not feel over crowded, cramped or pushed for space. The layout is simple, easy on the eye and makes it easy to find and select what you'd like to try on.

      The service is of a variable standard. I would say that the vast majority of sales assistants are extremely helpful in all aspects of service. There is one particular girl in the Reading store who remembers me, always goes the extra mile to help, brings different sizes, items, shoes to the changing room and helps in every way possible.

      If they are out of stock of my size she will immediately check other stores, reserve items, arrange delivery or collection. This level of service is far superior to that experienced in places like Topshop, for example and it is why I would rather shop somewhere like Karen Millen. To staff like this, nothing is too much trouble. If I need to exchange or return an item, there is no hassle or fuss. It really irritates me when sales assistants make a fuss of you returning an item when you are within both the company policy and the consumer law.

      A small minority of staff, however are pushy, rude, unhelpful and arrogant and not very helpful to the customer.

      The clothing sizes are smaller than most stores, so whereas I might be a UK size 8 in most other places, I may need a 10 in Karen Millen. Conversely, I find the underwear is rather generously sized. The shoes are standard/tight fitting.

      I do feel the prices of the clothing are too high for the quality you receive. Whilst I appreciate that you are paying for quality, design and service, I still feel the quality of the clothing is not high enough to warrant the prices charged. I therefore almost only buy clothes in their sales as I do feel the original prices are overpriced. I am happy to pay high prices for very good quality items, but I do not feel the prices and the quality of the garments are matched.

      The quality of the clothing is reasonable to quite good and not all items are very durable. I was not so impressed with the beaded shoes I bought. I wore them very lightly on two occasions and the beads have already started to fall off and unravell. A mini skirt I wore lightly once started to become unstitched. A pair of knickers worn twice has the ribbon coming off it already. I have to say, I am somewhat disappointed in these items, even having bought them at sale prices. I would be extremely disappointed if I'd spent 120 on shoes, 80 on skirt and 25 on the knickers to meet these faults.

      The designs are usually good. Sometimes they are very chic and stylish, but sometimes they verge on tacky and some items are definitely far too WAG/Essex girl for me.

      All in all, I'd say the designs are sometimes very nice, the quality is mediocre, the service is usually good/very good and the original prices are far too high.

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    • Holland & Barrett / Supermarket / 2 Readings / 2 Ratings
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      19.03.2010 03:43
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      Not my first choice of shop

      Holland and Barrett is a cornucopia of weird and wonderful vitamins, pills, supplements and specialty foods. I normally visit to buy food and drink products and occasionally vitamins.

      In general, the staff are quite helpful. I cannot recall any unhelpful member of staff and feel the service is usually good.

      The food prices are high. Some of the same products are definitely cheaper in Tesco or Sainsbury's so it is worth noting prices before you buy. Having said that, Holland and Barrett do stock some food and drink items unavailable elsewhere, particularly soya or vegetarian products and some unusual dried fruit or nut combinations. I usually therefore try to buy elsewhere as it is cheaper, but will go to Holland and Barrett if a product is on a special offer or I cannot buy it elsewhere. Sometimes they do a buy one get one half price offer which includes all items, so this can be a good time to buy things that are usually somewhat overpriced.

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      • More +
        19.03.2010 03:35

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        Wouldn't make a special journey there

        Chiang Mai was an unfortunate disappointment. Having spoken to a relative who'd visited the place, albeit some years ago, we arrived expecting a cultural mecca, a place of beauty, culture and history. Instead we were greeted by back packer hostels at every corner. Western style burger or pizza joints as every other building and tuk tuks charging even more than those or the taxis in Bangkok!

        Chiang Mai was a tourist swamp, there was little to see that was not touristy or unspoilt. It was dirty, somehow soul-less and the ever present old men with young Thai girls made me feel uncomfortable.

        Having said that, there were some positive aspects. There was a great foot spa (one of many) with nibbling fish which ate the dead skin on your feet and legs, leaving them soft, clean and comfortable. There was an abundance of good quality and delicious food available in a huge array of restaurants mainly aimed at tourists. The food was delicious and very cheap. If you ventured into local style eateries, the food was more traditional and a tasty insight into what the locals ate.

        Thai massage, available everywhere was excellent and available for a couple of pounds an hour, it really helped my back and shoulders which sometimes were tense and painful.

        I did quite enjoy my visit to Chiang Mai and had fun, but it would certainly not be a place I'd be in any hurry to return to.

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        19.03.2010 03:21

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        Best on th high street

        Pret, certainly the best high street coffee chain.

        If I could choose Pret every time, I probably would. The coffee is made to my liking, the staff are helpful and efficient, the interiors are simple but calming, the lemon and pomegrante drinks are refreshing, the sandwiches are exceptionally fresh and delicous and I love the cheesecakes, love bars, crisps and snacks. I could wax lyrical about the food for a very long time!

        I like the fact that Pret offers genuinely high quality and fresh food that tastes good and definitely better than competitors e.g. Starbucks or Costa. The food is more sophisticated, some of it is healthier and you feel more comfortable knowing what you are eating as nutritional information is obviously displayed.

        I think my only gripe would be that there are not Pret branches in every UK town! I can't really fault Pret, though I suppose it would be nice if they were a little cheaper or offered a student discount.

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        19.03.2010 03:13
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        Very decent train company

        I usually use the Edinburgh - London line of the East Coast services, so my review refers mainly to this route and the website.

        The trains are reasonably spacious - certainly better leg room than Virgin Cross Country Trains! They are usually very clean and do not smell funny (some Virgin trains smell awful). However, my favourite feature of the East Coast trains is the free WIFI on board. This allows me to make use of my time on the journey, catching up with emails or work. Again, East Coast beats Virgin as they provide free internet, whereas Virgin charge a disproprotionately large sum for the service.

        There are rarely many delays and the fact that you can travel direct from central London to Edinburgh in a few hours without changing, lugging bags or hassle is brilliant. Why on earth would you fly and subject yourself to waiting, lugging bags, airport transfers and hassle?

        The East Coast website is good because the ticket prices always seem lower than other train operator websites and sometimes they have special cheap fares on certain trains or have occasional 10% off codes. They offer free first class delivery and you can purchase food/drink vouchers to save money if you will buy refreshments on board the train. You can also request email reminders to book your tickets in advance to save you money.

        The problem with the website is that it only allows you to buy one ticket at a time, so it takes more time than necessary to buy several train tickets, which can be rather frustrating.

        Overall, I am satisfied with the service. It certainly beats flying or using Virgin trains.

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        19.03.2010 03:01
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        If you get the chance to visit, GO!

        Idyllic, sumptuous, old fashioned glamour. Cliveden exudes class, beauty and sophistication. The house is set in perfectly preened grounds, with gorgeous countryside views of the Thames.

        It is well situated being near Heathrow Airport (for romantic getaways), Maidenhead and London. It can also be reachead easily by boat and there are moorings for guests who arrive by boat. The staff will be more than happy to send a car to pick up or drop off guests from the boat mooring at no extra cost.

        Cliveden is a perfect romantic getaway. Enchanting and historic, the building is synonymous with sexual scandal. When I stayed, I saw a mixture of families with children, mature couples, young couples and female friends on relaxing spa breaks. I could imagine this would be an ideal place to spend a honey moon night.

        The service on arrival is very good. We were offered tea and coffee in the drawing room (at no cost) whilst the documents were dealt with and brought to us. Our bags were taken care of and we were promptly shown to our room - we stayed on two different occasions and each time the rooms were the epitome of old fashioned glamour. Each room or suite is individually named and decorated in a particular theme e.g. Oriental.

        The furnishings are comfortable, antique and beautiful. Do not expect modern. I have stayed at many top hotels and did immediately notice that the beds were supremely comfortable, the sheets ultra luxurious and smooth. Heavenly.

        There is ample storage space and the bathrooms are spacious, marbled and well equipped with exceptionally delightful old fashioned baths and shower heads. A real delight to indulge in a foamy tub of bliss with your loved one.

        The main building is worth exploring for there are many fine pieces of furniture, art and architecture to admire. A number of interesting books are provided in the rooms, including a history of Cliveden.

        The dinner served was of a very high standard. Quite pricey, but very enjoyable. The breakfast was included in the room rate and was exceptionally good. Far above the usual hotel breakfast fare. The selections of foods available was copious and utterly delicious. All of the food and drink are of exceptionally high quality and freshness. As soon as you took a bite into the fine sausages, cakes, pastries or breads, you could tell they had not spared any expense at sourcing the finest quality ingredients and it definitely was a difference you could taste. The best breakfast I've ever had.

        The spa area is pleasant and hotel guests are free to use the facilities. The indoor pool is quite old, but perfectly useable. I think this could benefit from some renovation. I had a back massage and it was pricey, but again utterly blissful and would happily have again, if money were no object.

        I found all members of staff to be exceptionally helpful, discreet and eager to please. I felt treated like a queen and had a truly luxurious and relaxed stay on both occasions. The prices are high, but if you really want to treat yourself or a loved one, this place comes highly recommended.

        Even if you don't stay the night here, you can visit just to walk around the grounds or have tea here. It's a truly unique and beautiful home.

        n.b. check their website for late or off season room deals and you can sometimes get rooms for half price or less.

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        19.03.2010 02:08
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        Fed up with irritating or expensive and useless cleansers? Try this!

        After having used a number of high end skin care products, I was left feeling disappointed in that these so called premium products did not give premium results.

        On a whim, well, when Garnier Clean and Fresh cleansing milk was on a half price promotional offer in Boots, I bought it to try. The bottle is a simple plastic 200 ml affair with a flip top lid, some might say it's not very glamourous or sexy looking. I say it is very easy to use and avoids spillage or waste. Not fiddly at all.

        It is easy to use, apply a small amount to a cotton pad and sweep gently over the face, eye lids and lips. It is very gentle and does not cause any irritation to the eyes or skin. It is also very effective at removing all types of make up, including water proof mascara, stubborn eye liners and general every day gunk and grime on the skin.

        I would highly recommend this product as a cleanser or as a general eye make up remover to anyone. It's often on 1/3 off or 1/2 off in Superdrug every few months. Other products in the range e.g. toner, moisturiser are also very good indeed.

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      • More +
        29.09.2008 20:50
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        Ten favourites, though not my only faves!

        Fab fab fab, this is my kind of review!

        In no particular order, ten of my favourites...

        1.Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturising Lotion. Okay, it's a classic and everyone likes it, but it really is lovely to use. Comes with a pump so it's hygenic to use. Smoothes and moisturises the skin, very comfortable on the skin and very effective. Brilliant even when your skin is a bit sensitive, very gentle formula and totally non greasy. A must have, for sure.

        2.Clinique Acne/Blemish Solutions Emergency Gel Lotion. A small 15ml tube of spot fighting goodness! Works very quickly and really helps - a very effective product.

        3.Shu Ueumura Lipstick. Packaged in a clear, yet sleek tube for easy colour identification, this has a lovely smooth texture, quite sheer and ever so slightly glossy so the colour doesn't look OTT. Comes in lots of shades to please everybody and is such a pleasure to use as an everyday lipstick. Not cheap or widely available in the UK.

        4.Yves Saint Laurent Instant Pur Toning Water for Face and Eyes. A very soothing and calming toner which removes makeup quite effectively too. What I like most about this is just how gentle and soothing this feels on the skin and eyes - it is opthamalogically tested too.

        5.Crabtree and Evelyn Botanical Body Lotion. I find this very expensive (15 pounds or so?) for a body lotion as I normally use cheaper stuff (I.e. Under 5 pounds) but was given it as a gift and wow, feel the difference! Gorgeous packaging, makes you feel great using it and in your room. Again, love the pump top - easier to use and more hygienic. Non greasy, smooth and moisturising. A definite yes from me.

        6.Urban Decay eye liner pencil. Best eyeliner I have ever used, end of!

        7.Anna Sui blush. What's not to like? Beautiful packaging, makes you feel like a princes, comes with a perfectly shaped blusher brush for easy application, see through panel allows you to see the colour quickly, ever so slight shimmer and subtle but sufficient colour so you don't end up looking like a clown! My favourite blusher.

        8.Urban Decay eyeshadow palette. Lovely stuff to use, nine colours from naturals to brights and smoky colours for only 20 pounds! Individual ones are about 12-14 each...and yes they are bigger, but whoever gets through a whole eyeshadow? Anyway, I love Urban Decay eyeshadows and this is a great way to try the colours. They really last and look fantastic, you can match them to your outfit :)

        9.Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion. Shaped like a genie bottle, because it works like magic! Smooth on before applying eyeshadow and voila you have long lasting, non creasing, brightened eyeshadow. A must use for everyday. It really works.

        10.Anna Sui Perfume - Anna Sui. The original fragrance is a purple liquid in a black enamelled style ye olde bottle, very very attractive and looks great in the bedroom. It smells quite nice - I'm not that into it but get a few comments on how nice it is so I suppose it does the job! I just love how pretty it looks, but if other people say it's good then it must be, right?

        Thanks for reading.

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        • What's In Your Bag? / Discussion / 35 Readings / 33 Ratings
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          28.09.2008 17:26
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          Check it out

          Inside my bag today....

          Now I've only been to the Freshers' Fayre and Tesco today so here goes!

          THE BAG ITSELF

          It is an enormous black patent GIANT thing from French Connection (okay it was actually bought from TK Maxx and on sale, but nevermind!) - it has chain handles and I have attached a charm to the bag. Let's just say this is a very hot bag and can comfortably fit my life into it.

          THE CONTENTS

          1.Mobile phone - for obvious reasons
          2.Room and hall of residence keys - because I do want to come back in later!
          3.Purse - containing...cash (not much), bank cards, store loyalty cards, gift cards, vouchers, driving license, student card
          4.Various flyers and leaflets from student societies
          5.Freebies from the student stalls - not great ones sadly...did get some sweets.

          Um, that's all for today - usually it's much more than that.

          Oh and of course my Dior lipgloss and mirror.

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          • Top Shop / Highstreet Shopping / 39 Readings / 39 Ratings
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            14.09.2008 21:58
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            Better than the rest!

            Topshop is part of the Arcadia retail group owned by Phillip Green and includes Miss Selfridge, Dorothy Perkins, Burton, Outfit and others. There is a Topshop in almost every major town and city in the UK and you can also buy online from the website which has a great deal more choice than most of the stores. Topshop is based in the UK, with stores in apparently 30 counties and currently expanding in the US.

            Topshop began in 1964 and sells affordable yet stylish and reasonably good quality items such as clothing, footwear, accessories, cosmetics and jewellery. Topshop sells own branded items as well as special lines and some branded goods e.g. The Kate Moss collection, Lipsy, Unique, Rare, Upper Fifth, Office, Nine West, Hello Kitty, various imported accessories from the Far East and a huge range more. These are best found in the flagship store on Oxford Street, London.

            As hailed in the media Topshop has undergone something of a revival in recent years. The campaigns with Kate Moss, for instance and other marketing have meant its image has morphed from ''deeply unfashionable'' in the 1980s (Wikipedia) to its current place in the UK fashion industry as one of the most popular highstreet chains - lauded by fashion editors and we are told, apparently models and actresses shop in Topshop too! To call Topshop deeply unfashionable nowadays would be a sure fire fashion faux pas.

            Topshop is one of my favourite clothing stores for a number of reasons.

            THE OXFORD STREET STORE

            The key word here is choice, with an utterly brilliant range of goods.

            This is a vast emporium of all things Topshop - it is often very busy and for good reason. It spans several floors with entire sections devoted to key areas such as:

            1.Handbags - Topshop own brand, Paul's Boutique and a range of other new designers
            2.Hoisery - socks and tights in every style and colour
            3.Cosmetics - Barry M, Pop and so on - the choice is vast as you can buy almost every shade of Barry M imaginable! Lots of beautiful jewel like colours to perk you up if you want to buy stuff but are a bit skint!
            4.Confectionary - a delicious pick n mix selection as well as quirky prepackaged sweets. Not the cheapest, but fun all the same
            5.Homeware and gifts - cute and adorable home gadgets such as jewellery containers, mugs, lighting, small furnishings, stationery
            6.Jewellery - own branded and Mikey
            7.SALE section! Always worth a visit!
            8.Topshop clothing collections - everything you could possibly want!
            9.Topshop basics, workwear and vests/t shirts
            10.Vintage clothing, shoes and accessories - not cheap but some items are truly gorgeous
            11.''Cool'' branded areas e.g. Dresses and t shirts from Rare, Unique, Lipsy and some very cool but less famous brands - can pick up some great stuff here
            12.SHOES - from Topshop own to Nine West, Office and sometimes more expensive brands
            13.Underwear - Topshop own, Wonderbras, luxury silky items
            14.Cafe
            15.Menswear upstairs in Topman - it exists but that's all I know about it!

            I could go on forever about this store as it is really worth a visit. By far my favourite shop in London and I always pop in when I go to London. I always find something I like and the choice is just phenomenal. You can pick up some fantastic and individual buys. The party dress section is brilliant because there is a great selection of beautiful, unusual and unique designs which are not found anywhere else. Best of all the damage is not too bad, most range from 40 to 100 pounds, so are generally affordable.

            THE GOODS

            Right, so enough about the flagship store - what about the goods themselves?
            Topshop clothes are available in UK sizes 6 to 16 however it is sometimes more difficult to find size 6s and size 16s. Most commonly found are 8/10/12s.

            They are manufactured in many places including Turkey, India, Hong Kong and Eastern Europe.

            Topshop stores in general sell:

            1.Basic clothing - plain tops, tee shirts, shirts, black trousers and so on. They are fairly plain but are of decent quality and the styles are subtly updated every season or two. E.g. A plain cardi will have cute heart shaped buttons added to it
            2.Trendy clothing - the lastest styles based on the seasons and inspiration from the catwalk and designers - this changes regularly so you don't need to worry too much about everyone else having the same outfit as you
            3.Footwear - seasonal designs including boots, shoes, sandals and some special designs
            4.Accessories and jewellery including reasonably priced leather handbags
            5.Underwear and hoisery - cute designs

            From buying many Topshop items over the years I have generally found the fit and quality of the goods to be of a good standard. There have been very few occasions on which I have had problems with the quality and where necessary the staff have taken appropriate action to remedy the situation e.g. Give refunds.

            CUSTOMER SERVICE

            Can be very variable. Some staff are extremely helpful, knowledgeable and friendly. Others are unhelpful, rude, lack interpersonal skills and do not seem to understand the meaning of customer service. It is as if they are TRYING to be awkward or else are just entirely clueless.

            My conclusion is that the niceness of the items outweighs any lack of customer care there might be.

            PRICING

            The full priced items to me are not cheap, you can certainly go to other high street stores for cheaper items. However, I am inclined to go for Topshop as the design, fit and quality are better than some of the slightly cheaper brands available.

            As a rule I try to get my Topshop fix when there is a sale on (unless of course there is a very special item in the Oxford Street Store!) because there are often some very good bargains to be had. The best time to buy is to wait for the BUY ONE GET ONE FREE promotion which seems to happen at some point during every Topshop sale. This means you not only get your heavily discounted item, but a second one free. This is, of course only good if you actually like both items. It does get better, because Topshop are very reasonable about student discounts and will allow students to have their 10% off on sale items as well as full priced items! This is something very few retailers do and is another the key reasons I prefer to buy at Topshop - they are student friendly! I know it sounds silly, but when a store says they will only give student discount on full priced items, what is the point? How many students can afford to pay full price for all of their clothes? :S

            N.b. It is worth noting that if you're planning to make a big purchase it may be worth considering a Topshop credit card as you get an extra 10-15% off, 5 pound voucher and some other benefits e.g. Free delivery from the online store. I don't personally have one as I have not spent enough in one go to make it worthwhile.

            SUMMARY

            Whilst Topshop is slightly more expensive than some high street shops, the design and quality of the items outweighs the slight extra expense. The clothes are by far nicer than other retailers in the same price range and the clothes are updated regularly, are very fashionable and have styles that will be to the taste of many people - you can be very ''trendy'' or dress down a bit. It may be aimed at the youngish crowd, but certainly has garments that would be popular with more mature persons.

            I would give it five stars, but the customer service sometimes lets it down. I have shopped in places with far better customer service (namely House of Fraser, John Lewis and M&S). Come on Topshop, you can do better! Match the standard of your customer service to the standard of your goods.

            Do visit the flagship store though- makes me feel like a kid in a candy store!!

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              13.09.2008 22:26
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              A no brainer really

              GENERAL INFORMATION

              The MTR (Mass Transit Railway) is the equivalent of the Tube in Hong Kong. It is mostly an underground rail service with the odd overground station.

              The MTR is by far the easiest way (apart from taxi) to get around Hong Kong. It is clean, cheap, efficient and you never have to wait more than 10 minutes for the next train - usually it's no more than 3-4 minutes. It is also reliable and safe - the only thing you should really be aware of is pick pocketing which one should always be aware of when travelling in crowded places.

              Many MTR stations are connected to major shopping centres, attractions and hotels, or are at least very near by which makes it very easy for tourists to get around. MTR stations are well labelled and all signs are in English as well as Chinese and the staff mostly speak English so language is not an issue.

              MTR stations typically have a selection of small shops e.g. Seven Eleven, Maxim's Cakes, Herbal tea shops, snack places and so forth.

              n.b. Although food is sold at stations, eating and drinking beyond the barriers and on the trains is a no no as fines are in place for people doing so. Littering is also a big no no.

              You can also catch an MTR train straight from the airport called the Airport Express and if you want to venture further, you can explore Kowloon and the New Territories and some MTR lines run near to the border with Mainland China.

              TICKETS

              The main options are:

              1.Individual tickets - a ticket from A to B, wherever your chosen destination is.

              2.Octopus cards - similar to Oyster cards in London. Octopus cards are topped up at stations (either at a machine or ticket office) and are simple swiped when you enter and leave the barriers at a station and the cost of the fare is automatically deducted. They are incredibly convenient and a bit cheaper than buying individual tickets. You will see many locals simply swiping their bags at the barriers - they place their Octopus cards on the inside pocket of their handbag so they can just scan their bag and go.

              Octopus cards can also be used to pay for taxis, bus fares, trams, groceries in a number of stores e.g. Park n Shop, Seven Eleven, Wellcome to name a few. Octopus cards can also be used to pay in food outlets including Mc Donalds, Starbucks and many more.

              The MTR is very user friendly, convenient, inexpensive and great for tourists. If you're used to UK trains and tubes you will find this a completely different experience!

              http://www.mtr.com.hk/index.html

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              • More +
                13.09.2008 21:55
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                A grand hotel indeed

                The Grand Hyatt Hotel is a five star luxury hotel situated on the Hong Kong Island side of the harbour in Hong Kong. The nearest MTR station is Admiralty, no more than a five to ten minute walk away. The location of this hotel is central and quite convenient, despite it not being connected to an MTR station. Of course there are numerous low priced taxis and buses to get around in. Nothing in Hong Kong is too far away. It is a good location for tourists who have never been to Hong Kong before as they can easily get to the main sights and attractions e.g. The Peak, Victoria Harbour, large shopping malls (Pacific Place, a haven for luxury goods connected to Admiralty MTR station) , Stanley, Hong Kong Park, various museums and many more.

                A number of famous people have stayed here including President Clinton who at the time had an entire suite called ''The Presidential Suite'' - yes, it actually said that on the lift button!

                As you would expect from any luxury hotel in the Far East, the Grand Hyatt is indeed grand. The décor is luxurious, the carpets are plush and the service is immaculate. Of course, there are bellboys and porters who immediately offer to help you with your luggage.

                The room we had was spacious, clean, bright and very comfortable. The furniture was tasteful and stylish with a modern twist and the standard tea and coffee making facilities were available in room. The bathroom was splendidly clad in marble and included very nice toiletries and lots of extras. We had a spare room for clothing/suitcase storage. Some of the additional features included a mini step machine in the room for quick workouts!

                Our package included breakfast which was brought to the room on a daily basis, served with elegant white tableware, gleaming cutlery and an attractive mini vase of fresh flowers each day. We kept the flowers in our room! The breakfast was continental with fresh fruits, coffees and juices.

                The outdoor swimming pool was perfectly clean, smart and with a relaxing view of the side of the Peak. Lots of lush greenery to be enjoyed whilst taking a casual dip in the warm and gently humid air. Judging by the other swimmers, it was a smart set of clientèle staying with us.

                We did not eat in the hotel as we prefer to venture out into more exotic and unusual places to eat.

                I would strongly recommend this hotel as a very luxurious and comfortable if you can afford it!

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              • H&M / Apparel Store / 34 Readings / 32 Ratings
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                11.09.2008 22:19
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                Run, run far away into another high street retailer of better quality!

                H&M - cheap but not that cheerful. Maybe cheerful with a sickly smile of synthetic material?

                I used to like H&M. The styles were cool, everything looked trendy and hey - the prices weren't bad either!

                But then I began to see through the quirky and cool togs - beneath it all was cheap, poor quality tat that barely lasted beyond a season. I grew fed up of buying an item, liking it, only for it to lose shape after a few washes or develop holes after a couple of months. Also, let's face it...H&M is quite cheap, but not cheap cheap - so I really got annoyed with the low low quality.

                ''Screw dat!'' I thought, and I switched to Topshop and House of Fraser - what, more expensive? Well, not really if you buy in the sales and use student discount. Also - the clothes look far nicer, fit better and are of far superior quality and style. They do not disintegrate after a few washes and remove the hassle of having to go out and replace your once-new-but-now-holey H&M garment. Sorry H&M, you've lost me :(

                nb. The only H&M thing that seems to have survived is the knickers - those are the one okay thing there.

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                • Crocs Cayman / Shoes / 21 Readings / 21 Ratings
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                  10.09.2008 22:53
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                  Try them, you will be amazed

                  Crocs - omg what are you thinking?? Awful, horrible fad. Right? Wrong.

                  When I first heard about Crocs, I thought they were hideous, looked stupid and vowed never ever to wear them. A huge no no.

                  Well, that was until I started working in a hospital. Everyone seemed to wear them. I was given a pair of clogs to wear. On a 13 hour shift this did not bode well for my feet. I ended up with sore feet, sore legs and back pain. It emerged from my colleagues that Crocs were DARN COMFORTABLE.

                  Right. That's it. Screw fashion, I thought. I found some on sale in the US for something crazy like $14...I wore them to work on a daily basis. The rest is history.

                  Yes, they look stupid - but if you wear them for work so what?? My feet now don't hurt, even on 13 hour shifts! They are light, extremely comfortable, do not rub in any way whatsoever and are easy to clean and keep looking nice. I honestly can't fault them.

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                  • Slug and Lettuce / Pub / Bar National / 7 Readings / 5 Ratings
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                    10.09.2008 22:44
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                    Decent venue for all occasions

                    Comfy, casual and a little more class than a pub. The Slug and Lettuce is a cross between bar/ pub/restaurant, with comfortable sofas, smart and subtle decor, slightly funky looking and obviously popular.

                    I only started going to the Slug and Lettuce because I saw an offer on their website - if you subscribe to the newsletter you get a 5 pound voucher. Well, that got me hooked!

                    I have frequented the Slug and Lettuce in Reading numerous times, it has often been quite busy, hence the slow service at times. However, the food is quite tasty - I rather like the Westernised take on tempura vegetables as a starter or side to share. The dishes include things like gastropub burgers, salads, hoi sin duck pancake platters, ciabatta strips with oil and vinegar and some lovely desserts. The great thing is, if you order ANY non dessert food you get buy one get one free ond desserts which is rather tempting I must say. The food is tasty and quite decent, although not gourmet standard.

                    There is an extensive range of drinks both alcoholic and non alcoholic: a great range of cocktails (the woo woo is lovely) with lots of weekday deals, soft drinks and coffees etc.

                    What I like most about the Slug and Lettuce is the relaxed and comfortable atmosphere where one can sit with friends on a sofa, chill out, maybe order some drinks, maybe order some food as well and just enjoy yourself for an hour or two. The layout of the establishment means you are not too close to other people so you can sit back and relax. I like being able to have tasty drinks and nibbles in a stylish and pleasant environment. Oh, and it doesn't cost THAT much either.

                    Whilst the staff are generally very helpful and polite, sometimes the service can be slow, especially when it is busy - this is understandable!

                    Anyway, I'd give it a go - especially with the online voucher. It's quite a nice place to go and meet friends/have a casual meal. It's a multi-occasion venue: brunch/lunch/coffee/tea/dinner/cocktails/drinking at the bar. You can sit inside on the sofas, at a table, at the bar or outside. Melikes!

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