Four Seasons Hong Kong Nail Bar – the most luxurious manicure in Hong Kong?

nail bar four seasons hong kong christina fitzgerald freedom dollhouse

When it comes to manicures, I’m more of a DIY girl (in case you hadn’t guessed from the previous 100 or so blogs); as for the rare occasions where I have brought in the professionals, I discovered my mani manna with The Nail Library and have rarely strayed from them since.

However, when I heard that the Four Seasons Hong Kong was opening their very own Nail Bar, my polish-loving ears pricked up. The Four Seasons is easily one of the best hotels in Hong Kong and definitely one of my personal favourites; everything they do, they do to perfection. So if they were trying their hands (perfectly polished, natch) at a Nail Bar, chances are it was going to be done right.

nail bar four seasons hong kong

If you’re talking first impressions, then the Four Seasons’ Nail Bar definitely deserves a standing ovation. On walking in, you’re immediately greeted by a knockout view over Victoria Harbour through a sweeping wall of windows; in fact, Four Seasons even has sunglasses on hands for when the view gets too blinding – now that’s service! The space itself is small but far from squashed, and the whole place positively screams chic, sophisticated luxury – five plush leather chairs for treatments, gleaming marble surfaces and glowing nail polish bottles displayed in backlit alcoves like treasures in a jewellery box.

nail bar four seasons hong kong nail social afternoon tea

My media partner-in-crime Charmaine and I were booked in to trial The Nail Bar’s signature Luxury Manicure – a divine hour of hand heaven. In fact, since we had the room all to ourselves, the Four Seasons had laid on a special Nail Social for us, complete with afternoon tea and champers. Afternoon tea and nail polish? I’m not sure the day could have been more tailor-made for me unless they’d laid on a litter of cute puppies to cuddle as well. And don’t worry, even if you haven’t booked a Nail Social, the Four Seasons still lays on complimentary beverages for all guests; champagne, cocktails, whiskey, smoothies, wheatgrass shots, fresh juices, tea… you name it, they’ve got it!

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Louise Hill Design – Hong Kong’s a work of art

louise hill hong kong art 1

Proof that Facebook isn’t all bad: I discovered amazing artist Louise Hill through it!

Thanks to a couple of my friends liking Louise’s work, her Facebook Page popped up on my news feed one day, whereupon I immediately fell in love with her vibrant colourful designs – and now I’m showing them here in the knowledge that you will too!

louise hill hong kong art 2

Many of Louise’s pieces are inspired by her time in Hong Kong and I love the richness of detail that goes into each artwork – I’m forever noticing cool new elements and references in there, all of which transport me to certain memories, places and experiences in HK… which is exactly the idea. The Mister Softee van, the yummy dan tat (egg tarts – my favourite!), the old-school wet market red lamps… something new jumps out at you every time you look.

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Models Own Slate Green nail polish review

models own slate green

I can’t remember what I heard about first: the existence of British nail polish brand Models Own… or the fact that they regularly have amazing 50% off sales on their website!

They recently had another such sale and of course, I immediately began to get itchy buying fingers. But for once, I managed to exercise some cosmetics control and instead decided to shop from my substantial stash instead – resulting in a quick mani using Models Own Slate Green.

The results? I really need to start shopping my stash more often! How on earth did I let this colour go undiscovered in the murky depths of my drawers for so long?

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Sense Of Touch Sai Ying Pun Spa review – good morning Vietnam!

sense of touch hong kong massage

Soho – say whaaat? Poho – pah! These days, Hong Kong’s hottest area is strictly Westside, with more hipsters heading there than a gallery opening serving craft beers and burger sliders.

So far, most of the buzz has been around Western District’s new bars and restaurants, but now there’s something to make us beauty geeks sit up and take notice too – Sense Of Touch Sai Ying Pun.

I’m a big fan of Sense Of Touch, a homegrown spa chain that has now grown to eight locations in Hong Kong, as I think that they deliver quality and consistency across all the venues I’ve visited. The Sai Ying Pun Sense Of Touch is a little smaller than most of their other spas (i.e. the Tseung Kwan O branch) with only around five treatment rooms, but it’s still just as stylishly decked out as all its bigger sisters. I loved the colourful armchairs and Vietnamese-style white latticework screens in the foyer, where manicures, pedicures and foot massages take place. Meanwhile, the treatment rooms are simple and small – but they certainly don’t feel cramped or bare either.

sense of touch sai ying pun

I was booked in for Good Morning Vietnam – an exfoliation, steam shower and massage treatment that’s only available at Sense Of Touch Sai Ying Pun. Your 105 minutes of pure pampering bliss begins with an Elemis ginger and lime scrub, which is every bit as invigorating and defiantly un-abrasive as only the best scrubs can be.

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Grand Hyatt Hong Kong afternoon tea – a work of art

grand hyatt hong kong cake painting afternoon tea

Forget March Madness, the Mad March Hare or even the March winds and April showers that bring forth May flowers – March in Hong Kong means art mania… also known as any party/event/celebrity visit that-can-vaguely-be-connected-to-art mania.

Sadly I’m not really into art – or parties – but what I can get on-board with is another opportunity to stuff my face. Enter the Grand Hyatt Hong Kong’s Cake Painting Afternoon Tea, a fun collaboration with British/Japanese artist Peter McDonald. Consisting of edible treats inspired by McDonald’s art, plus several of his original works on display too (including some created especially in honour of the tea), this is probably the closest I’ll get to embracing my artistic side this March!

grand hyatt afternoon tea peter mcdonald

In what will go down in history as The Day Of Two Afternoon Teas, I actually ended up eating the Cake Painting Afternoon Tea for ummm… breakfast (I know, I know) – but what a wonderful way to start the day it was! I’m not going to be giving Brian Sewell a run for his money anytime soon, but I can tell you that Peter McDonald’s art is eye-catchingly bright, vibrant and imaginative, abstract but not in that “well now I feel stupid” pretentious way, and with a tangible sense of fun and playfulness. The Grand Hyatt’s Executive Pastry Chef David White has done a great job of translating all this to the afternoon tea, creating colourful edible creations that still taste good too. Now that’s the kind of work of art I can truly appreciate!

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Island Shangri-La Hong Kong afternoon tea – a right bobby dazzler

island shangri-la hong kong best of london afternoon tea

I’ve had a stressful couple of weeks recently – so of course, the best way to combat this was to have two afternoon teas in one day. Obvious really, isn’t it? (Note: here‘s the one I had for breakfast!)

As luck would have it, our trip to the Island Shangri-La Hong Kong happened just in time to catch their Best Of London Afternoon Tea – a collaboration with Chef Nicholas Patterson, award-winning pastry chef from the Shangri-La at The Shard, London.

island shangri-la hong kong lobby lounge

I love the Island Shangri-La for its old-school glamour (who can resist the plush carpets in their lifts, which are changed every 24 hours to feature each day of the week?) and their Lobby Lounge is no exception – plump sateen armchairs, marble tables, sparkling chandeliers and a live pianist tinkling away in the corner. The room feels like something out of the castle in Disney’s Beauty & The Beast… no doubt helped by the fact that said pianist was playing Tale As Old As Time when I walked in!

Although it doesn’t have the grandiose cityscape views of other afternoon teas in town, the Lobby Lounge’s enormous windows offer a different but equally lovely panorama – of the Island Shangri-La’s gorgeous tropical garden and giant Banyan Tree. It’s a view totally different to any other I can think of in Hong Kong, and further adds to the place’s quiet and relaxed charm.

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Shu Uemura Laque Supreme in Chu Chu Coral and Wild Rose review – baby got laque!

shu uemura laque supreme

The arrival of Shu Uemura’s latest lip product = this baby’s got laque!

Oh come on, you know I can never resist a good pun… and nor can I resist a good lippie. Shu Uemura’s Laque Supreme is a gorgeous halfway house between a lipstick and a lip gloss – but there certainly isn’t anything half-hearted about the final results!

Inspired by the high shine and rich colours of Japanese lacquerware, Laque Supreme essentially marries the consistency of a lip gloss with the intense pigmentation of a lipstick. But actually, it’s even better than that.

shu uemura laque supreme swatches wn02 cr01Top to bottom: Wild Rose/Wild Fuchsia (WN02), Chu Chu Coral (CR01)

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