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Daily Life

God Jul – Merry Xmas

Merry Xmas loves! 

I hope you will have the most beautiful one filled with joy, love and happiness. Our christmas tree is decorated and all the food is prepared. This time of the year is very special to me and my absolute favorit holiday. We got back just a few days ago after our long trip in Mumbai. You can read about it in my Mumbai guide. I am glad to be back in Sweden and spend christmas with family and loved ones. Take care of each other and have a lovely christmas holiday. I am sending loads of love to all of you. 

X Linda 

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God Jul loves! 

Jag hoppas att ni alla får en underbar jul med mycket kärlek. Vi har dekorerat julgranen och förberett all mat. Denna tiden på året är mycket speciell för mig. Vi kom tillbaka för några dagar sedan efter vår långa resa i Mumbai. Du kan läsa mer om det i min Mumbai guide. Är så glad att vara tillbaka i Sverige inför jul och att spendera jul helgen med nära och kära. Ta hand om varandra och jag hoppas att ni får en underbar jul helg. Mycket kärlek till er. 

X Linda 

Categories
Travel

Mumbai – Travel tips & where to stay

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We had the amazing opportunity to move to Mumbai, India for  few months due to business here. Me who love traveling and explore new places were thrilled with excitement. Depending on how long you´re in Mumbai for, there are many choices of spectacular hotels around different areas of the city. Since we were staying long term we decided to get a hotel apartment so we had the benefit of cooking our own food most of the time. However, if you come here for a few days, you might as well just get a regular hotel room. 

Where to stay in Mumbai

We decided to stay with Grand Hyatt, Santa Cruz, because of the convenient location. Traffic in Mumbai is a organized chaos, so to get from one place to another in rush hour takes forever. We were happy with our stay at the Grand, we had our very own pool area, a big gym which offered several personal trainers and all the equipment needed, yoga classes on request and the spectacular spa which offers various selection of treatments, sauna, steam room and a nice jacuzzi. 

 Our pool area at the residence side
Our pool area at the residence side
 Morning stretch in our beautiful garden
Morning stretch in our beautiful garden

Our apartment was spacious and very clean. But what really stood out the most in this hotel was all the food choices and the amazing service we received. Guests can choose from Indian, multi cuisine buffet, authentic Chinese and Italian cuisine. Our favorite was SOMA which was honestly one of the best Indian food we had in a very long time. Here you can read more about SOMA and book a table. Since we´re both very health oriented and particular in what we eat, Chef Chandan made us feel like home every single day at Fifty Five East. Caring for our special food needs with his professionalism, knowledge and amazing service is something that would really make us choose to stay at the Grand Hyatt if we came back again. 

 Entering Soma
Entering Soma
 Inside Soma
Inside Soma

 Beautiful lights at the pool garden
Beautiful lights at the pool garden

Even though we had our own apartment and the possibility to cook every day, we still decided to have the breakfast buffé everyday cause it´s really amazing and so much to chose from. They also have indian food for breakfast and asian too, plus all the hot and cold typical american style breakfast including a egg station with all the extras, and a wide selection of all the fresh fruits, fresh juices, cold cut station and of course the sweets station with different pastries and waffles with toppings. You won´t regret choosing the breakfast here. 

 Fresh melon water
Fresh melon water
 Pancakes and waffles station
Pancakes and waffles station
 The sweets station
The sweets station
 Indian food station
Indian food station

One of my favorit things in this hotel was the Christiaan Georgio Hair and Beauty salon who also offer manicures and pedicures. They also have the most amazing hot oil hair treatment with head and shoulder massage followed by wash and blow dry. My all times favorit. I love to pamper myself every now and then and this is perfect for that. Ask for Mami & Maria only! They are very lovely and friendly and they will definitely take good care of you and make you feel like a princess. 

 Welcome to Christiaan Georgio Hair and Beauty salon
Welcome to Christiaan Georgio Hair and Beauty salon
 Prettiest interior
Prettiest interior
 All that glitters
All that glitters
 Pampering time
Pampering time

They also prepared for the christmas season by decorating festive lights in the garden, christmas trees and loads of other beautiful christmas decorations around the hotel that really made it feel like home. 

 Festive lights outside the main entrance
Festive lights outside the main entrance

The St Regis, Lower parel Mumbai is another amazing hotel, part of the SPG- loyalty program, and Starwood hotels with (according to me) Mumbais most spectacular rooftop lounge – Asilo. We had light dinner and mocktails here in a very relaxing atmosphere and it has a stunning view overlooking the city as well as the Arabian sea. The St Regis Mumbai also offers a wide selection of amazing dining experience and guests can choose from Indian, Japanese, Asian and European Cuisines. Guests can enjoy the relaxing spa, stunning rooftop pool and fitness centre during their stay. They also offer in house butler service which is really amazing. We did not stay here on this trip but maybe for our next visit we will try The St Regis Mumbai and review the rest of this stunning hotel.  

 Stunning view from Asilo
Stunning view from Asilo
 Beautiful sunset X view
Beautiful sunset X view
 Pink skies X Asilo
Pink skies X Asilo
 Pretty setting with flowers, candles and white interior at the Asilo roof top
Pretty setting with flowers, candles and white interior at the Asilo roof top
 Our virgin mojitos
Our virgin mojitos
 You´ll find amazing clean & healthy food options at Asilo
You´ll find amazing clean & healthy food options at Asilo

 Polaroid X Love
Polaroid X Love

Intercontinental hotellocated on Marine drive in Mumbai is another five star hotel and they are part of the IHG Rewards club for hotel guests. They offers a beautiful rooftop – Dome. Here you can have sundowners while watching the view of the beautiful sea while they´re playing some really good lounge music. Make sure to book in advance, 17.00 is a good time since it gets quite busy. Ask for a table closest to the sea, not in the middle area. Have a aperitif here and relax, and then continue to dinner somewhere else since their menu is very limited. The nutella crepes are amazing but food wise I would go somewhere else after the sunset. The hotel also offers a pool on the roof. 

If you want to read more about shopping in Mumbai you can read about it in my Mumbai shopping guide. And if your time in Mumbai is limited or if you don´t feel like going around all over the city, you can stop by Crawford market next to Colaba. There you´ll find everything in one place and I literally mean everything. It´s super busy though and very crowded too. 

 Busy at the Crawford market
Busy at the Crawford market
 These pretty ladies are selling vegetables at the Crawford market
These pretty ladies are selling vegetables at the Crawford market

Mumbai is a busy city, very crowded and people come from all over India to find their luck or follow their dream. It is a strong contrast between rich and poor, be aware of poverty in the streets, the women and children really struggles and you will see some heartbreaking situations. It is everywhere you go, more in some areas, be humble and understanding. 

When it comes to taxis and rickshaws. Always go by taxameter, or else they´ll rip you off. We found the best guy who became our driver. He drove us around on the weekends where ever we needed to go for a fixed amount. Meaning he stopped wherever we wanted, waited for us so we could do all our errands and sightseeing in our own time and schedule, less stress and I really preferred it that way. Uber is also a great idea which we realized at the end of our trip. 

You can go to see Colaba for a day, include the gateway of India and Taj Mahal Palace in the same day. There´s a great restaurant called Leopold in Colaba near Taj Mahal Palace that serves amazing food and the place is famous internationally and always very crowded. Try the lobster in a rich gravy or the shrimp from the tandoor, they´re both excellent. 

 Leopold Cafe
Leopold Cafe
 Making new friends in Colaba
Making new friends in Colaba
 Beautiful setting - Colaba
Beautiful setting – Colaba
 At least one polaroid wherever we go X outside Taj Mahal Palace
At least one polaroid wherever we go X outside Taj Mahal Palace
 Beautiful sunset in front of Taj Mahal Palace
Beautiful sunset in front of Taj Mahal Palace

While you´re at it and doing your shopping in Bandra, pass by the street art and Bollywood art project on Chapel road. I loved the graffiti walking down this street. 

 Chapel road
Chapel road
 Side street from Chapel road
Side street from Chapel road

For health enthusiast like us 🙂 Every Sunday 10 am – 15 pm all year around you´ll find a organic farmers market that connects Mumbai with organic farmers across the area of Maharashtra. Read more about the farmers market here

On Hill road next to bank of India, you will find Godrej Nature´s basket, this is a grocery store that sells everything that can be hard to find in Mumbai including organic vegetables, fresh squeezed juices, nut flours, gluten free/vegan pastas, almond butters, seafood, organic homemade tapenade and sauces, nut milks and veggie chips just to mention a few of the things the have. I simply loved this store and we went here at least once a week for our grocery shopping. They also have home delivery options find out more about Godrej Nature´s basket here.  

You should also visit any spice market in Mumbai, since you can get all the amazing healthy spices from there including turmeric, ginger, different curries, saffron, cinnamon and many more. You can even buy it whole and dried and then you go to a place where they make the spice for you fresh grounded and you can also mix together your own mixes of spices. This is a dream for food lovers and health freaks like myself 🙂 

We also went to the amazing Lil Flea festival during our time here in Mumbai. Here you can read more about our time at The Lil Flea festival.

We really had a great time in Mumbai. The people we have met have been so friendly to us. I am not sure when but we will come back again due to business here in the future. Next stop for us is Sweden and christmas in winter wonder land with our families and loved ones. 

X Linda 




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Categories
Travel

The Lil Flea festival – Mumbai

If you are lucky enough and happen to be in Mumbai during The Lil Flea festival, a festival of shopping, food, music, amazing people coming together sharing so much talent, happiness and joy, I really recommend that you join the crowd. It´s in BKC. At The Lil Flea festival you´ll find pop up shops from all over India, cute little tents, live bands, movie screenings, a bar and a huge food court, streetstyle food with all type of homemade cuisines. We had some fresh and healthy cold pressed juices from one of the stands and then later on in the evening we tried some homemade chicken biryani which was really delicious.

 Homemade chicken biryani
Homemade chicken biryani

 Between the shopping stands
Between the shopping stands
 Sunset at The Lil Flea festival
Sunset at The Lil Flea festival

 So cute and colorful
So cute and colorful

Here at The Lil Flea festival there was also the opportunity to join their amazing movement and help improve the way we live and the air we breathe by simply get your free seeds to plant in your home, or you could learn the secret of organic gardening. 

 Beautiful lights
Beautiful lights

 Raghav Meattle with band, such a great talent
Raghav Meattle with band, such a great talent

Later in the evening there were some really great local bands playing, and we were enjoying it so much, just relaxing and enjoying the atmosphere with good vibes only. I could really recommend visiting The Lil Flea festival in Mumbai if you´re in town next time on selected dates. 

X Linda 

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