photo slideshow

Saturday, 23 April 2016

Hitz Playlist Travel Recap - Packing Without Screaming

If you've been tuning in to hitz fm Sabah (or just being spammed by my social media pages), you might have heard that I've joined the crazy house! I'll be yappin' and snappin' while bringin' the beats (wow, ok Calista, calm the heck down) every weekday at 10am - 1pm; yes, Calista has
officially been forced to become a morning person!


I wanted to revamp the Hitz Playlist to give it a lil Calista zing, and one of the things I'm most passionate about is of course, travel! Every day I'll share a travel tip that has worked for me, and at the end of the week shove them into a blog post - welcome to Post Numero Uno!

This whole week, I talked about packing: how to pack light, how to save on luggage money, how to clear more wardrobe space, and how to fill it back up!

1.  Hate doing laundry?
     If you like to pack light when travelling (or just literally live in your jeans), did you know that     you can put them into a ziplock bag, put the ziplock bag into the fridge overnight, and in the morning, they’ll smell just like new! Yep, lazy level: UP!!

2.  Gadgets galore?
     Hotels are notorious for only having a couple of sockets per room, but we all have more than 2           devices to charge when travelling, especially if we’re sharing! Always bring a strip extension - you can get some that are pretty lightweight - and you’ll be able to charge that phone, camera, power bank, laptop, secondary phone, GoPro...... at least 3 devices with one plug! Now you can vlog, selfie, AND update social media on the go!

3.  Hassle-free duty free!
     Always leave a little space in your hand luggage for duty free purchases! Get all that yummy               chocolate through kastam (aka customs) without a hitch!

4.  Luggage weight limitations? 
     So this one has helped me a lot: Wear your heaviest clothes and shoes on the plane to save weight. When I travel for work I rarely travel light, so I will most likely wear my jeans, a comfy top and wedge sneakers to fly, along with a jacket in my backpack. Or, you could just do what this guy did.

5.  Revamp that wardrobe.
     Here’s a tip I haven’t tried yet, but after reading about it, definitely will: You know that pile of           “to donate/throw/finally get around to wearing” tops & dresses sitting in your closet that you               just can't bring yourself to get rid of? Get a final wear out of 'em during your next getaway, then ditch them when you’re done and lighten the load for the trip home. More pros? No laundry to get home to, and new wardrobe space for purchases you make during your holiday.”

Any good tips I've missed out? Drop me comment!
Don't forget to follow me on Instagram @CalistaLeahLiewSnapchat @CalistaLeah;
And join me on the Hitz Playlist every weekday 10am - 1pm on hitz fm Sabah
100.8 in Kota Kinabalu & 99.8 in Sandakan!

Wander with lust, and I'll see ya next weekend!

Love always,
Calista xx

Monday, 11 April 2016

Hair: Cherry Plum Red by Cut's Gallery

Since 2012, all my hair needs and dreams have been made into reality through collaborating with Cut's Gallery Urban Retreat


From red streaks, to mermaid hair, to just keeping my hair the healthiest it can be, Stella and her team have been amazing to work with, as you may have seen through all the colourful photos I've been flooding my social media with! 

This year, I really wanted to go bright red for my birthday, since I've always wanted to be a redhead; and what better way to mark the last year of my 20's than by going crazy? 


With MJ's colour expertise, we bleached away the remnants of my green and purple hair, mixing in Olaplex to keep my hair from getting any more damaged (I think I've bleached it about 6 times in as many months now!). Then, with a special L'oreal mixture and an MJ touch, ta-da! 

I present to you, Cherry Plum Red!






Totally in love with this colour!




The best part about this colour is, when it starts to fade (as all fashion colours do), it fades into a gorgeous fushcia, kept vibrant for the whole 2 months by using a special red shampoo and mask. The mask especially is a godsend; it made my hair super soft in just a couple of minutes! 
1 & a half months 
Life saver for bright-coloured hair!
Unfortunately I had to recolour it back to brown due to work, but I'm still loving it right now as MJ gave me a new style to go with it: my very first bangs! This show is over very soon though, so I wonder what I should do next.. Hmmmm...


Follow me on Instagram @CalistaLeahLiew for more photos and Snapchat @CalistaLeah for the latest!

If you want your hair to be well taken care of, visit Cut's Gallery at 5th Floor, Palm Square, Centerpoint Sabah, or call 088-233386 for appointments. Make sure to ask for Senior Stylist MJ, and give the code CALISTACUTS for RM50 off all chemical services! =)

*Big shoutout to Vints cty for the beautiful photos! You can check out his work on Facebook - definitely highly recommended for portraiture shots! 
**Also shoutout to Cindy Lai for doing my makeup' if you need makeup/special hairstyles for events, look her up at Cut's! 

Looking forward to another year of great hair,
Calista xx

Friday, 18 March 2016

Sun, Shopping & Celebrity Scouting in the South Of France: Why You Have to Take The Trip

The South of France has rightly been considered one of the most glamourous and elegant destinations in the world. Year round, the region attracts some of the world’s wealthiest stars and celebrities. Festival season, shopping, and legendary parties abound, what many people won’t tell you though is how varied and welcoming the region is. You don’t have to be an A-lister to enjoy some of the spectacular coastal views and rural beauty. Wine tasting, seafood restaurants, and relaxing in the golden sun can all be enjoyed, whatever your taste and budget. Read on for some of the most unmissable spots.

St Tropez

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The famous self-tanner gets its name from the glamourous location where a bronzed, glowing look is always popular. Yachts line the harbour and serve as locations for tours or parties. The endlessly lazy sunny days give way to a lively (and often expensive) nightlife. If you want to see celebrities in their natural habitat then go to the source: St Tropez swarms with the rich and famous, but also everyone in between. For holidaymakers and French natives alike, it’s an opportunity not to be missed!

Gorges Du Verdon

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This breathtaking river at the foot of a dramatic 700 metre drop is a popular destination for those who love the outdoors. The rolling hillside of Provence surrounds the azure water. You’ll be spoiled for choice for walking, hiking, and kayaking spots. This is a particularly popular spot for active families. Pack a picnic and plenty of sun lotion to make an unforgettable day of it.

Nimes

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This historical city boasts many visible relics of its Roman past. Frequented by Emperors and the Roman elite in its day, today the city still features an amphitheatre and the Maison Carrée. A popular site for history buffs and shopping addicts alike. The cobbled streets are bursting with boutiques and rare finds you may not discover anywhere else in the world. February’s vibrant Carnival is a particularly popular annual event. But the excellent art galleries and bustling atmosphere make it a favourite all year round.

Montpellier
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Don’t let the long stretch of golden sandy beach fool you. Montpellier has a thriving business district and some ultra-modern architecture. The city provides a change of pace from the rest of Southern France’s coast and hillside. But it still maintains an element of easy-going charm. The old town centre is a fascinating glimpse into the past and the tramway network is an exhilarating way to get from place to place. Be sure to check out some of the museum exhibits that have made the city famous.

Collioure
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This quiet, unassuming town has a charming beach and is only a few miles from the Spanish border. A heady mix of French, Catalan, and Mediterranean culture is the outcome, reflected by the wonderful art and fragrant food. After a delicious seafood meal or fresh tapas, wander down to one of the beach’s sheltered coves and swim until the sun goes down. The town is popular but rarely crowded, so perfect for a visit.

So next time you're in Europe, make sure you don't forget to make a trip to the South of France; it might just become the highlight of your holiday!

A bien tot,
Calista xx

*This post was contributed by a guest.

Thursday, 18 February 2016

Advantages of Going on a Wine Tasting Tour

If you’re looking for something a little different to do, you should consider going wine tasting. Whether you’ve done one before, or it’s completely new to you, this is a fascinating experience. Get a couple of close friends to join you, and have some fun!
Educational
You might not think about it this way, but wine tours can be very educational. You can find out a lot about how wine is made and what the different grapes are. You’ll also learn the correct procedure for tasting wine. You don’t just sip it apparently, as you’ll discover with a visit to http://www.timgaiser.com/how-to-taste-wine.html! And you can also find out a bit about the countries that produce these wines. Okay, so you probably won’t be able to pass it off as one of your classes in college, but you can still learn a lot from a wine tour!
Socialize
As well as being educational, wine tours are also very sociable affairs. You can find out information from http://hermannwinetrail.com/wine-trail-events/ about events you can enjoy alone, or with friends. And you will be able to intermingle with other people on the tour. Have a chat with them about the tour, and what else they are doing. See if they can recommend any wines to you, and vice versa. This is a fantastic way of heightening your enjoyment of the experience that bit more. Try to be open to new social experiences, and use the wine tasting as a chance to interact with others.

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Get Drunk!
Let’s be honest, who doesn’t like to enjoy a few glasses of vino? Well, a wine tour is one of the few times you can get drunk without feeling sheepish about it. Of course, getting paralytic is never a good idea, but after wandering in the sunshine and sampling a few delicious glasses you’ll find yourself pleasantly tipsy. And this is one of the best feelings you can get: you’ll find the experience fun and interesting, and you can always stock up on more tokens and tickets to whet your palette again.
Something a Little Different
Another great thing about going on a wine tasting trail is that it’s something a little different. This is the obvious appeal for so many connoisseurs out there. You need to make sure you try new experiences and open your mind. Whether you’re at a loose end this weekend, or looking for unique holiday activities, a wine tour would be ideal. It’s something that’s a little off the beaten track - both literally and metaphorically. It will provide you with the opportunity of enjoying something a little different and unique, and that’s a good thing.
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Pixabay Image
Wine tasting might not top your list of things to do, but it should certainly go on that list. It is a fun and social activity that you can do alone, or with friends and family. Next time you go away why not consider booking a wine trail to keep you busy. This might even give you a newfound appreciation for wine as a drink, and you’ll get to enjoy some beautiful scenery as well.

Til next time, my alcoholic friends,
Calista xx

*This is a contributed post.

Thursday, 21 January 2016

Sweet Indulgence: Say Cheese with Anchor

Anchor is no stranger to households in Malaysia; I daresay we've all had a bite of Anchor Cream Cheese spread on bread, toast, crackers or even straight from the jar at some point! So when I heard they were creating a new line of desserts, I knew I had to try them out!


Three signature desserts were created by Fonterra's own in-house patisserie chefs using Anchor Cream Cheese, as well as other Anchor products such as Anchor Cream, Anchor Butter and Anchor Cheese Slices to give them divine creamy goodness, and are available in Port View Euro Bakery in Kota Kinabalu until the end of January 2016. Hopefully, they will gift us three more creations after that! 

Kaien Chizu Tart
A sea salt cream tart with a rich cream cheese filling, topped with melted sliced cheese. When they say "rich", they really mean it! I loved this, but I might suggest cutting it into quarters and sharing with a friend.

Winter Magma
A melt-in-your-mouth chocolate souffle, with a divine cream cheese centre. Chocolate lovers, this will be your fave!

Karui Snow Cake
This petit vanilla chiffon cake is fruity and fresh, light and delicate with mango passion cream cheese filling, and topped with a buttery almond crumble. I think this one might very well have been my favourite!


There are three Euro Bakery branches in KK, one right opposite Suria Sabah, one in Inanam, and the other in Damai, which is the one I went to. If you wanna try out these scrummy desserts, you have 10 days, and counting! Good luck!

(Needs to go) On A Diet,
Calista xx

Friday, 8 January 2016

Roadtrippin': Attractions from Kota Kinabalu through Sandakan

Sandakan is definitely a favourite home away from home for Sabahans who live anywhere but, of course, Sandakan. Known as "Little Hong Kong" since it was here that many early Chinese settlers landed from Hong Kong, it is also known as "Food Heaven" because OH MY GOD.

Charlotte and I went on a short 2 day 1 night road trip with one goal in mind: Seafood Bak Kut Teh! From KK city, it's about a 5 - 6 hour drive through Tamparuli, Kundasang, Ranau and Telupid, before you reach the junction to Sandakan, Lahad Datu and Tawau. Along the way are the most beautiful roads, and Char's favourite bridge over Kinabatangan River!

Tourist Attractions: 

Tamparuli -
Rumah Terbalik a.k.a. Upside Down House
Tamparuli Suspension Bridge over Kiulu river
Zip Borneo: Zipline across Kiulu river
Kundasang -
Sinalau Bakas on the way up to Kundasang
Best view of Mount Kinabalu peaks
View of Mount Kinabalu from Kundasang National ParkDuring photo shoot for Tourism Malaysia
and of course, the best weather in Sabah!

Ranau - Desa Cow Farm,
Poring Hot Springs
During photo shoot for Tourism Malaysia
Sabah Tea Gardens
During photo shoot for Tourism Malaysia
We stayed in Four Points by Sheraton, which is situated right in the middle of town on the harbour, and gifts you with an obstructed view of Sandakan Bay and the islands beyond. If you haven't guessed by my other posts, I LOVE sea views!
Four Points by Sheraton
Upon arriving in Sandakan, we were starving so we dropped by Brew Cottage at Prima Square for a quick bite before continuing another 4 miles into town for a tour of the hotel.
Our room - Deluxe Seaview
The bathroom
Definition of a picturesque view
Executive Suite
Infinity Pool
Gym
Wrapped Bakery
The Best Brew Bar
Club Lounge
As we were craving local food, we only had one meal at The Eatery @ Four Points, and that was a beautiful breakfast spread with the best view, which Char and I took full advantage of! Hey, how could we not selfie in this gorgeous light?

Where to go in Sandakan?
1. Agnes Keith House
2. Puu Jih Shih Buddhist Temple
3. St. Michael's Church
4. Sepilok
    5. Selingan Island a.k.a. Turtle Island ParkDuring photo shoot for Tourism Malaysia
    6. Rainforest Discovery Centre
    During photo shoot for Tourism Malaysia
What to eat in Sandakan?
  1. Breakfast & Lunch:
    Buffet at The Eatery, Four Points by Sheraton
    皮蛋水饺,fish noodles, 5 spice pork noodles @ central market
  2. Hi Tea:
    Ba Lin Rooftop Cafe @ Nak Hotel - great for photos!
    UFO tarts
    English Tea House
  3. Dinner:
    Seafood Bak Kut Teh
    Seafood
  4. Dessert: 7 Heaven @ Mile 4, Cloud 9 @ IJM
The Good: Four Points by Sheraton is under the Starwood group, so just like Le Meridien, they have
                    the most amazing beds! I'm not kidding, these I would take a staycation just to spend all
                    day wrapped in their beds haha. The infinity pool has a view of heaven, and the location
                    is perfect for both business and leisure.


The Could-Be-Better: The variety of the food at the breakfast buffet could be wider, but that's all
                                       really!

For those who would like a quiet holiday, do try to avoid school holidays as Four Points is a family favourite. I would love to go back during low season and try capture that gorgeous sunset over the South China Sea..

Roadtrippin' Madness,
Calista xx

*Four Point by Sheraton photos by Charlotte Fong. For more amazing images, check out her Instagram HERE!