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Living The High Life

Sure everyone has a lot to say about how to buy a house, where to buy a house and how to upgrade a house, but to ignore the benefit of apartment living is really to miss a trick.

Whether you’re thinking of renting an apartment, considering a move to downsize or hoping to get on the first rung of the property ladder, the time you spend now researching your ideal apartment is potentially the most important bit of research you’ll do in your life. Get it right and you’ll make sure that your deposit is money well spent. Get it wrong and you’ll wind up in the wrong building, in the wrong location at the wrong price.

It’s true that the criteria you’ll be looking at for an apartment will be very different to that of a house and it’s important to make the differentiation.  In this guide we take a look at the art of buying or renting an apartment and how to get your home sweet home.

Whether you’re hitting up a loft apartment in downtown Manhattan or checking out the rivercove residences on the hip and popular East Coast in Singapore, the basic principles remain the same. We take a look at what to watch out for and what to avoid:

Location x 3

You’re likely to be facing a choice that thousands of renters and buyers before you have faced over many years and that’s the question of budget over location. Sure you could get a great size apartment, for a great price but if it’s miles away from where you live, work or hangout then is having your dream home worth the hassle of a longer than necessary commute?

Well, the answer is that no, it probably isn’t. As a rule of thumb, though certainly not set in stone, you should generally prioritise where you want to live over the type of property you live in. In reality there is often a grey area with most buyers or renters able to find at least one property they can live with in an area they love.

So what should your dream location look like? It might be that you love the nightlife and general ambience of your preferred area. The reason might be altogether more practical with a shorter commute to work or closer proximity to friends, family or partner. Whatever the reason, it should be practical as much as idealized otherwise the cracks will begin to show pretty quickly.


If you’re looking to rent then this is going to be of a key concern for you. Aside from your monthly bills for rent and utilities, you’re going to need to find out if your apartment carries with it extra maintenance charges and how much your bills are going to mount up to. Check out if there are parking charges or other hidden items.

When it comes to buying an apartment the process can feel a lot more complex than buying a house. The reasons are generally tied up again with maintenance and who is responsible for what inside and outside the building. It is essential that are fully aware of what you are responsible for, in terms of repair work, before you sign on the dotted line. Finally, you’ll need to check if there any scheduled major works taking place because even if you’re in your apartment for a matter of days, you could be expected to take on part of the cost of a big repair or investment job.

This really is the key area for apartment buying, once you have that clear in your mind it’s just a case of looking out for the more general issues that can come along with any apartment.

Image from Pexels

The details

Everything has the ability to look better on paper than it does in reality and the same is definitely true of property. A suntrap balcony can easily turn into a small outside space hemmed in by industrial buildings or worse being overlooked by far-too-close neighbouring properties, affording you nothing in the way of privacy.

Think about the position of your living space. Will you catch the sun? When, and does that matter to you? If you’re looking at properties sandwiched between a top and bottom floor you’ll need to consider noise; noise you make and noise you’ll hear above you. Noisy neighbours or a complaining lower floor resident might offset the benefit you might receive in retaining more warmth being in the middle.

The rest of our checklist would apply to house or apartment but are still important. Check that windows are sound and free from cracking paint. Make sure they open and close properly and the keys are available and will come with the property.

Take a look at power points and make sure there are no dangling wires anywhere and that they are also free from cracks. You’ll also need to have an inspection of the plumbing and electricity, two major system that, if not functioning correctly, can make a serious dent in your budget.

If the apartment isn’t quite to your taste, do you have the necessary skills to redecorate? Could you live with it in the short term, decorating one room at a time, or would you need to have it completely repainted before you move in? These questions might seem straightforward but when faced with a well-staged apartment viewing, it can be hard to see the obvious flaws.

Your ideal apartment is out there somewhere but like every major decision in life, you mustn’t rush into it. You may think you know the area well but take a walk around to make sure you know where the nearest convenience store is, the transport links and the atm.

Make sure you look out for any hidden charges, for planned works and for all the little details that might ultimately cost you money in the long run. As boring as it sounds make a decision with your head and not your heart for your perfect home.

Holiday Planning When You Have Picky Pals!

We all have them: friends who are never satisfied. Of course, you love them, you love to hang out with them, and you always
have a fun time together, but it can get quite annoying with how picky they are! They don’t want to do this and they don’t
want to do that, and you’re often left stuck for ideas on what to try next, especially when it comes to going on holiday together.

Maybe they hate the beach and where all the sand can get. Maybe they hate having to go on long walks around cities, and
constantly complain about their allergies when you want to explore the back roads. Maybe they just rarely like to hop on
a plane and go away with you, but you’re itching to spend some of your wanderlust with them! Whatever it is that makes
them a picky holiday pal, now’s the time to soothe those frustrations away.

You’ve just got to learn to plan your next holiday in a different way, and sit down with them to make sure they participate too!
So here’s a few tips you can hopefully put to good use in a situation like this.

Get Them to Make a Destination Decision

The pal you have can be quite indecisive upfront, but as soon as a decision is presented to them, they turn up their
nose at it. But when you ask them what else they would want to do, they have no idea - it’s frustrating, and it
just won’t workfor your holiday planning! So it’s time to call them over, sit down with them, and put them
on the spot with the decision making.

Sure, you can make it easy for them by offering them a bunch of potential places you could both go and visit this
year, and then let them pick amongst them, but why not go all out? Why not ask them where they’ve
always wanted to go? Get them to think about it for a bit, to bring them out of their indecisive shell, and then plan a trip
for it together? It can be a real bonding moment!

Get Yourselves Some Private Accommodation

Accommodation is one of the biggest things we can argue about when it comes to holiday planning, and there’s
always going to be one of your friends or family who aren’t satisfied with the hotel room you’ve booked or the hostel
bunk beds you thought would be fun. Sometimes you’ve got to compromise, seeing as foreign accommodation is
becoming more and more expensive (considering inflation rates, and all the new technology on offer now!), and
you have to put up with headbutting someone else’s travel ego. However, if you decide to go a little more private with
your accommodation standards, there will be little room for anyone to complain about it!

After all, if you’ve got your own house or villa to stay in whilst you’re off on your travels, you don’t have to live in fear
of other guests, errant toddlers, early wake up calls, bad room service, or anything going missing from your room after
someone has been in to clean it. So be sure to look up options online like a house for rent malaysia - if each one of
you going on the holiday can chip in for the price, you can make it a piece of cake to pay for, and you’re all going to
have your own space to stretch out and relax in once you’re there.

Pack Your Suitcases Together

Suitcase packing can be quite a lonely activity, and there’s always going to be something you forget that you only
remember once you’re already on the plane. Just think about the amount of plug adaptors you’ve had to pick up from
the foreign airport once you’ve landed!

So to make sure you’re never having to listen to non stop complaints about a friend of yours forgetting this and not
packing that, why not pack your suitcases together? You know each other better than anyone else, especially if you’re
besties, so you’ll be able to dish out a lot of constructive criticisms to each other when the time comes to zip the bags up.

So, You Ready to Get Holiday Planning?

Picky pals can make travel planning a little more difficult than it needs to be, but you don’t need to keep putting up
with behaviour like this! Play it safe, and make sure you’re planning for the pickiness as well this year.

6 Tips For Booking Travel Adventures With Kids


There’s nothing better than travelling the world with your kids in tow. You get to create new memories, relax and unwind as a family,
and see new and exciting destinations to tick off your bucket list. Of course, it’s not always easy getting to that point.
Booking a family holiday can be difficult, but not if you follow these six tips for booking travel adventures with kids.

Stay closer to home

So, you want to travel the world with your kids? That doesn’t mean you have to jump on a long-haul flight and travel to the
other side of the globe. Sometimes the best family adventures can be found in a neighbouring town, just a few hours away,
or even in the next country.

Give yourself a budget

According to The Secret Traveller blog at 1Cover,
one of the best ways to get yourself prepared for a travelling adventure is to give yourself a budget.
This is especially true for those travelling with kids. Knowing how much money you have to book an adventure and how much you’ll have to spend while you’re there is the only path to success.


Always ask about family deals

Many travel sites do everything they can to get money out of you, so they don’t always advertise their deals. When you are booking your
travel adventure with kids, always make sure you ask the hotel or travel company whether they do any family deals. These could be
discounted room rates, free meals for children, or even an upgrade to a bigger room. The worst thing they can do is say no!

Make sure your packing game is strong

I’ve shown you what I take in my carry-on luggage, but what about a trip with children? You’re always going to take more than you
need on a family holiday, but this isn’t always a bad thing. If you have younger children, packing home comforts such as stuffed toys
and books could be the difference between a screaming child and a happy child.

Consider all-inclusive resorts

If you want to make the most of your family travel adventure, you might want to consider an all-inclusive resort. While these are
normally more expensive than holiday rentals or self-catered resorts, you have so much more to play with. You have unlimited
food, drink, and activities on tap. This way, you know exactly how much you’re spending.

Get your timings right

Travelling with kids limits your choices when it comes to planning your holiday because you have to choose the school holidays.
However, you do have control over your flights. When booking your flights, make sure you book kid-friendly timings,
such as first thing in the morning… but not too early!
If you do book an early flight, consider staying in a hotel the night before. If you want to make the most out of your travel adventure
with your kids, all you need to do is follow these tips! Do you have any more tips to add to the list? Let me know in the comments.

Travel Options For The Short, Medium & Long-Haul Flyer

Photo by Free-Photos from Pixabay

When you get the itch to travel, the first thing you need to decide is where to go. But the problem is,
that is much easier to say than do. So with that difficult thought process in mind, here are some ideas
for you as you get ready to book your next trip. We are going to base this on how far you have to fly in
order to get to your destination.

Short-Haul (0-3 hours)

When it comes to shorter flights, your main options are going to in Europe, although for those of you
looking to get outside of the continent you might want to consider somewhere like Morocco which you
can get to in just under three hours, in particular, Tangier. While the most popular trips to Morocco
tend to be to Marrakech or Casablanca, Tangier has a unique and fascinating history to offer. Sitting
on the strait of Gibraltar, this Moroccan city has been under Spanish occupation as recently as 1940
and became part of its current nation in 1956. One of Tangier’s most popular tourist spots is the
Dar el Makhzen, a museum of Moroccan artefacts and once a palace of the sultans. If you’re trying to
place where you know the word Tangier from, it might because this is where the popular fruit tangerine
is named after. But it is much more than a city which gave a fruit its name, a visit to Tangier will
introduce you to the cafe culture of Morocco, take you on a walk through time thanks to its colonial
architecture and all the while you’ll be sat on the Mediterranean just 10 miles from Europe.

If Tangier, Morocco is at the maximum end of a short-haul flight then we should also look at the
lower time scale. So we’re going to have a trip to Paris, France. The City of Lights is just a hop,
skip and a jump over the English Channel and is the home of some of the world’s most famous
landmarks and artworks. The cultural part of you will love a trip to Paris thanks to being able to
spend hours exploring the Louvre, which house the Mona Lisa amongst its many important and
varied artworks. You will also take a walk along the Champs-Elysee where the shops come with
high-end brand names one after another until you reach the Arc de Triomphe. And, of course,
the Eiffel Tower awaits you when you are ready to take its lift to the top and gaze out over the
beautifully constructed city that is Paris.  

Photo by Engin_Akyurt from Pixabay

Medium-Haul (3-6 hours)

You might be looking to go further afield, this will especially be true in the winter months, but not
interested in sitting on a plane for hours on end. If that sounds like you then this is your section,
this is where you can sit back for under six hours knowing that you’ll be greeted with the warmth of
a different climate and new things to explore. If it is sun, sea and sangria that you’re looking for then
you should consider one of the cheaper medium-haul flights on the market, Tenerife. Before we
discuss its many delights, you should first forget all the party lifestyle stuff you might have seen about
this Canary Island. There is much more to Tenerife than just the party atmosphere - though that is
there on The Strip if you want it.

Tenerife, a Spanish island just off the coast of Africa, takes around four hours to get to and what
awaits you is all the delights of a holiday plus some adventure if you want to seek it out.
For those of you looking for more than just sitting on a beach then you should might want to consider
taking a hike up Mount Teide, the dormant volcano that sits at the heart of the island which has its
own fame to claims after being used in films including One Million Years BC and
Fast and the Furious 6. Elsewhere, wildlife fans will be thrilled to see whales and dolphins frolicking
in the water and accessible via a pleasant boat journey.

There are plenty of other options available to you for medium-haul flights, such as a trip to Egypt for
the history of the pyramids and a trip down the River Nile or to the sun-drenched island of
Corfu, Greece.

Photo by stux from Pixabay

Long-Haul (6+ Hours)

Now, let’s start discussing longer journeys. There are two main places that we are going to consider
for the purposes of this discussion; Asia and the Caribbean, both of which have similar flight times.

Flying one way you will find yourself in Asia and we are going to propose Bali, Indonesia. Some of the
scenery you are going to come across in Bali is taken straight from paradise and put in your eye line.
Golden beaches await you along with the unique culture that is Indonesia. One country made up of
several islands and colonised by different cultures over centuries, Indonesia has a lot to offer the
long-haul passenger. Consider booking yourself a perumahan (property) on the beach front and
wake up to the sounds of the crashing Bali Sea every morning.

The Caribbean is made up of lots of islands, but this time we are going to look at Havana, Cuba.
If you’re going to set off on a long journey, you should consider experiencing something that is a
world away from the current life you lead and Havana is just that. Since the revolution at the end
of the 1950s, Cuba has been home to a socialist driven government and as a result, presents
something of a unique culture in this part of the world. The 1950s car that ride around the streets,
the music that never seems to stop and, if you’re so inclined, the world-famous cigars that
Fidel Castro himself used to enjoy.

Wherever you decide to go, make the most of your journey time and get planning what you
want to do. The world is big, but it is getting smaller and you should be getting out there.

Do You Have A Favourite Dress?

Hello again everyone.

How are you all doing? Winter is slowly creeping up on us and I'm ok with it. I admit I like it better when I don't have to wear boots, tights, jeans and coats to keep warm, but it's something about it that makes me happy too.

But today I want to talk about dresses. And not just any dress. But my favourite dress. My favourite dress might not the nicest dress I own, nor the sexiest, but it's a dress that I wear at least a few times every week all year round! And the dress I'm talking about is this one!

 It's an old dress from Taking Shape that I bought at least 4 or 5 years ago and I have worn it so much. It's a great all rounder as it's so easy to just throw on if you're going to run some errands or if you're just going out for a quick drink or just lounging about it in your garden. I team it with leggings and boots in the winter as well when it's too cold to just wear it on its own.

Best of all this dress has pockets!!!! I love a dress with pockets and this dress has got pockets!!!

I love the colours of this dress and the print. It makes me happy to look at it and it goes together with so many other things I own. The shape of it is a classic shift dress so it falls really lovely over my big boobs as well so I feel it's a lovely and versatile dress for me.

Like I said, it might not be the prettiest dress I own, but it's definitely the most loved.

Do you have a dress like this that you wear all the time?

Feels Like Summer Out There, But It's Party Season Coming Up Soon!!!!

It's almost November and I can't believe how quickly time flies. This year has been a bit of a different one as the weather has been so brilliant here in the UK and it's still almost summer temperatures out there. But that aside, it's only a few weeks until Christmas and that brings up the same question every year. What to wear for the upcoming parties in the holiday season? For the family Christmas gathering, the work do, the friend's party or whatever Christmas celebration you might need a party dress for.

I have had a look and chosen some of my favourite dresses this season to give you some inspiration which I hope you like.

My first choice is from Quiz Clothing who recently launched their curve range which I have fallen in love with. They are spot on trend with their range and prices are really good as well.

I've chosen this Curve Navy Sequin Maxi Dress as one of my party dresses from their collection.

It's a stunning sequin dress that also comes in gold. I can see myself wearing this for the Christmas do at work and then again for that special big party on New Year's Eve. It screams old-fashioned glamour and sex appeal and enhances your feminine figure. The way it falls over your hips is in true Jessica Rabbit style so what's not to like about this dress? It comes up to a size 26.

Next dress up is this beautiful Simply Be By Night Sequin Disk Bardot Dress from Simply be. Also, a sequin dress cause who can have too many sequins dresses for the party season.

Isn't it stunning? I can see myself wearing this for that special New Years party. It's fun and colourful and shows off that little bit of skin that makes it very sexy without being too revealing.

This stunning evening dress from Coast took my breath away and is on my list over must have dresses for that one special occasion like an autumn or winter wedding or a special party where you have to wear a long gown. It's absolutely spectacular. I'm talking about the Viletta Pleated Maxi Dress From Coast

It's such an incredible dress with a beautiful colour and design. It's pricey so it's not for everyone's budget, but it's a stunning dress for that special occasion.

No party dress blog post is complete without a red dress and my choice this time is the Red Sparkle Skater Dress from Yours Clothing

A classic design in a pure red with sparkles. You can't go wrong with this dress. It's perfect for many different occasions. It's size friendly as it goes up to a size 34-36 and it's quite budget friendly as well.

Since I'm not working full time I won't be going to any works do, but I'm sure I will be going to a couple of parties before Christmas and another couple during Christmas and New Year so I'll be picking up at least one of these dresses.

What are you planning to wear for the upcoming holiday season?

Gorgeous Swimwear With UK Swimwear And Miraclesuit*

Ages ago I was asked to review this stunning swimsuit from Miraclesuit via UK Swimwear*, but due to health conditions, I haven't been able to review it until now. 

It's the Jillian Dip Dye Swimsuit From Miraclesuit and it's such a stunning swimsuit and beautifully crafted. Really great quality and despite it being a wrap around style I find it keeps my breasts securely tucked in with no mishaps of falling out ;-) 

Unfortunately, this swimsuit is sold out, but UK Swimwear has lots of other great designs from Miraclesuits on their website that I can highly recommend you take a look at after you've read my full review. 

 These swimsuits from Miraclesuits are expensive, but they are well worth the price as they are excellent quality and they are sturdy and feels like you get what you pay for.

There is great support around your waist, great support for your chest with soft integrated cups, great hold for your sides and the straps are very comfortable as well. They don't twist or slide down and that is something I struggle with when it comes to swimwear.

The design is stunning with its ombre effect and the wrapping design. It makes it stand out and I've been getting lots of compliments when I've been wearing this swimsuit.

The cups are a bit small for my chest, but that isn't a big surprise as I can't ever find anything that fits my breasts properly. I would say it's sufficient room for big boobs in this suit. I'm wearing size 24 here and it's a great fit for me.

 The straps are wider than normal swimsuits so I think that stops them from twisting and falling down.

 As you can see the cups are a bit small for me so I have to scoop my boobs back towards my back for them not to spill too much over the front.

 The swimsuit is amazing for both a lazy day around the pool, on the beach and a more active day hiking up to stunning waterfalls and natural pools. It is a great all-rounder and it looks stylish and can be worn with shorts for a casual look, but also teamed with a cute cover-up and a cocktail if you're at an upscale resort.

If you want to take a look at Miraclesuits collection at UK Swimwear please take a look HERE as they have lots of beautiful swimwear even if this one is unfortunately sold out.


*gifted item, but my views are all mine.