As usual, a little late with this one but I wanted a complete set of monthly round-up’s and it would be an injustice to all of the fun things that I did in December to leave it out! As I’m sure was the same for all of you, December was the month of drinking and stuffing to my heart’s content and I hope that you enjoyed every moment of it and aren’t in any way beating yourself up about it now.
Life was busy, in the very best way. For anyone that knows me or read my post on the 10 Things I Love Most About Christmas, you will know how utterly bonkers I am for Christmas. However, for me it’s not just “Christmas Day” that gets me in a tizz, it’s the whole month of December (and let’s be honest, often even before). Despite the fact that my family have made it something of a tradition to spend Christmas Day somewhere hot, we always celebrate “Christmas Day” with all the usual trimmings before flying around the world, and I spend every waking moment up to then attending every Christmas party, function, drinks event, market, well-decorated shop, cafe or restaurant and embracing every excuse to guzzle bubbles & toffee nut lattes and stuff my face with mince pies & chocolate. So I have to admit that I missed it this (/last) year. Like really, really missed it. Although Hong Kong did a fine job of fairy-lighting up, I really needed a smack of cold air and to wrap my frozen gloved fingers around a Starbucks cup to feel my full Elf self. Thus I can tell you right now that I will 100% be staying put every single day in the run-up to Christmas this year, and no doubt overcompensating for a year of Christmas cheer lost (I already feel sorry for you).
That said, December was still epic. The 1st day of the month saw me attend a family friend’s Christmas party at his home. With him being Danish there was some of my favourite food knocking around, and though sadly nowhere near the mother’s standards, that didn’t stop me from enjoying one too many æbleskivers or cups of glögg. A few days later some of my friends from work flew over from Singapore & London to visit. We hiked the Peak, took full advantage of happy hour at Armani/Privé whilst watching the sunset, took the star ferry over to Kowloon just in time for the Symphony of Lights, had dinner at my favourite, Aqua, as well as 3-Michelin starred restaurant Lung King Heen and visited Disneyland. A solid few days well spent I’d day.
That concluded the Hong Kong whirlwind tour and meant that it was time for us to all hop on a plane and let Bekky give us the grand tour of Singapore. We decided to be #ballers and stay in the Marina Bay Sands hotel, world-famous for its infinity pool, as well as for William & I to invite ourselves to the Singapore office work Christmas Party held at 1-Altitude, home to Singapore’s highest bar and viewpoint, where we took full advantage of alllllll the free food and alllllll the champagne.
As for this year’s annual family Christmas getaway, we diverted from our usual Thailand path and headed to Langkawi. Nine blissful days of doing nothing other than sippin’ on coconuts, inhaling books and snoozing in the sunshine. And let’s not forget 5pm happy hour at the beach bar, where mum & I miraculously always found ourselves with the best seats in the house. Christmas Day was lovely as always with our hotel putting on a jolly good spread and Santa being very generous yet again (GoPro you are about to be Bali-ed!). I can also think of far worse locations than a tropical beach to receive the news that I have a permanent job come June.
I returned from Langkawi just in time to celebrate New Year’s Eve with Elliss at Zuma, which put on a Great Gatsby themed party that entailed free-flow alcohol and sushi canapes, nom nom nom. It was a really fun night and the perfect crazy end to a crazy 2016.
Can one even spell December without gluttony? I thought not. Bekky and William’s visit brought with it two exceptional meals at Aqua and 3-Michelin starred Lung King Heen, which served up the best Peking duck pancakes I’ve ever had, and I would go as far as to challenge you to beat anywhere in the world. I also took them to Chom Chom, my go-to for casual deliciousness and it certainly didn’t disappoint (their Wagyu beef short rib lettuce cups are to die for).
Singapore was another food bonanza with William & I entertaining ourselves whilst Bekky was at work with the only way that we know how: eating. We had lunch pit stops at Long Beach, Dempsey, where we sampled their famous black pepper crab (recommended by the lovely Honey); toured the renowned hawker stalls where we tried “chicken rice” and pork noodles; and munched on exceptional sushi rolls and a trolley of fries washed down with an ice cold bottle of white at the Marina Bay Sands Spago bar.
On our last night together we checked out Spago, Wolfgang Puck’s fine dining restaurant in the Marina Bay Sands which we really enjoyed: a beautiful setting, personable service and even better food (though their running out of black cod brought tears to all of our eyes). Last but not least, Bekky sent me on my way to the airport with a little sushi belly having munched our way through a decent number of dishes at Zen Sushi.
Langkawi Christmas was epic and naturally further food galore. Most nights we ate at the many very good restaurants within our hotel, but stand-outs from the holiday were Jala (inside our hotel, The Andaman) for superb seafood, The Gulai House at the Datai for exquisite authentic Malaysian/Indian fare, signature restaurant Kaya Puti at the St. Regis which has the most beautiful setting and The Pavillion at the Datai for a spot of my usual Christmas fave, Thai food.
You can read my post on the Top 11 Things To Do in Singapore for more detail but highlights of our trip were most definitely staying at the Marina Bay Sands and spending far too much time (and money) at the wonderful Spago bar, strolling around the Gardens By the Bay and Singapore Botanic Gardens, exploring Chinatown & Little India and, last but by no means least, visiting the newly opened F.R.I.E.N.D.S themed “Central Perk” cafe for an injection of throwback positive energy.
As for Langkawi, I will also be publishing a post on the 5 Things You Have To Do In Langkawi soon so keep your eyes peeled for that but, to be perfectly honest, our activity-packed holiday ended up being eeeever so slightly more chilled than anticipated (in the best possible way), so that the majority of our time was really spent lazing on the beach and soaking up the sunshine at our lovely hotel, The Andaman. However, we really loved paddle boarding on the calm clear sea, doing the Eagle & Mangrove tour which I found surprisingly fascinating and munching on copious amounts of superb satay.
What did you get up to in December? Please tell me all of your favourite anecdotes, particularly if they involve any of the things that I missed most so that I can live vicariously through you, get super nostalgic and even more excited for Christmas 2017 (this is not even a joke and it isn’t even the end of January yet). xo