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Wednesday, 31 December 2014

Miss Scuba International 2014 - Of Beauty, Nature, and Passion

Well, we've finally come to the last page of 2014. How was your year? Mine was full of highs and lows, with the highs being higher than I imagined they could be, and the lows better off left with 2014 when the clock strikes 12 later on. It seems the world over has been through a rough year, so it makes sense for us to wish for more peace, safety and happiness for all in 2015!


I was thinking and thinking, and I have loads of 2014 happenings I wanna blog about still, but finally decided, what better way to end the year than with a post about beauty - beautiful girls and the beautiful ocean!


Before my last trip to KL, Zens Production invited yours truly to witness the grand finals of Miss Scuba International 2014, which was held in the Magellan Sutera Harbour Grand Ballroom. As always with Sutera, the ballroom was beautiful, the food was yummy, and I was in great company.

One of the past year's Miss Scuba International winners and the emcee of the night.
This made me wanna up my emcee game and eventually emcee an event like this someday - maybe 2015? Who knows! 
Unfortunately, I was seated quite far back so didn't get many good shots from my seat, so the photos below are all courtesy of Borneo Frog's facebook page, and you can see more HERE!

Miss Canada - Allison Nicole Pelletier,
Miss Scuba Tourism 2014
Miss China - Qian Ya / Quennie
Miss France - Melanie Marie Louise
Miss Indonesia - Rima Saradiani Demensah 
Best National Costume
Miss Ireland - Amber Ryan Marie Gamble
Miss Photogenic
Miss Japan - Saori Tahara
Miss Latvia - Liene Larko
Miss Malaysia - Joanne Kimberley Majalap / Kimmy
(National Costume designed by our very own Jeffie Jeff!)
Miss Philippines - Amanda Arbitrario
Miss Singapore - Jeraldine Phneah Jialin 
Miss Marine Conservation 2014
Miss Thailand - Cattaleya Schulze
Miss United Kingdom - Michelle Katie Paraskeva
Best Talent (awesome rendition of Duffy's Mercy
)
Miss United States - Tabitha Eleanor Lipkin
Miss Congeniality 
Miss Venezuela - Krystel Bendahan Corrales 
And the winner is...
L-R: 2nd Runner Up - Miss Ireland, Winner - Miss USA, 1st Runner Up - Miss Thailand
Congratulations to the winners! And to those who didn't win, I hope you still continue on with marine conservation - see you in the sea some time!


So there you have it, the beauties of 2014! We should definitely have more international pageants held here in Sabah, and I'm rooting for another Sabahan beauty to win one of the major pageants in 2015! =P

To finish up, there's literally 3 hours til the new year, and I should get my ass in the shower so I don't have to ring in the new year in front of this computer screen. See ya on the flip side peeps!

Here's to you, 2014:

Here's wishing all my readers a very Happy New Year 2015! I hope you have the time of your lives tonight! Stay safe! 

Love always,
Calista xx

Saturday, 6 December 2014

Ada Sudah Bah DIGI 4G LTE!

I love how every company gives their taglines a little personal touch whenever they launch anything in Sabah. Sure, the typical "bah" always seems to make its way into it, but when used correctly, it's actually quite endearing (the opposite of endearing happens when it's obviously inserted even though no one would ever say it as such, but that's another story).

Some of the Sabahan Bloggers at the event!

I've been a loyal customer of DIGI since I first started using a handphone - wow, now that I think about it, that's like 12 years! =O I'm also, as anyone who remotely knows anything about me would know, addicted to the internet, so when I heard DIGI was launching their expansion of 4G LTE coverage in Sabah, guess who was besides herself with excitement? Faster mobile loading? GIMME THAT!


Pictured from left: Christian Thrane, DiGi’s Chief Marketing Officer, K Juslly, Director of SKMM Sabah and FT Labuan, Y.Bhg Datuk Bruno Vun, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Resource Development and Information Technology, Loh Keh Jiat, DiGi’s Chief Sales Officer, Prasanna Rao, DiGi’s Acting Head of Sabah Region
What exactly is 4G LTE? It stands for Fourth Generation / Long-Term Evolution, and has a speed 10x faster than 3G, enabling users to experience better quality internet, higher download and upload speeds, and a more consistent connection. With Sabahans being one of the highest data users on the DIGI network, what better place to expand this than here? (I'm pretty sure I help a lot with those statistics haha).

Video call - no problem!
During the launch which was held in Suria Sabah on 28th November 2014, we got to FaceTime with DIGI's CEO Lars Norling, and the connection was virtually seamless! I was actually quite surprised, even though we'd already checked out the speed-tests and video loading at the various stations across the event:
Whoa! =D

The queue to upgrade sim cards before the event
I upgraded my SIM card to the 4G-enabled USIM for free during the event, but you can just head on over to any DIGI center to upgrade for a small fee (I think it's RM10 but don't quote me on that =P). Keep in mind that not all phones will be LTE-compatible though: from what I know, iPhone 5S onwards, HTC One, Samsung Note 3 are all able to support the higher speeds.

Some of the smartphone plans on offer
If you're looking to upgrade, DIGI is also offering affordable plans for the newer LTE-compatible phones such as the iPhone 6 & 6+, Samsung Note 4 & S5, Huawei Honor 6 etc. Just pop into any DIGI stores to learn more!

I'm glad my HTC One is compatible, because I can't wait to try out my mobile internet speed with the new 4G! I'm currently in Genting, and I think there's still only 3G coverage here, but hey, soon, soon! Cz DIGI is Best For Internet, right?

Love always,
Calista xx

Monday, 1 December 2014

Da Nang in a Vietnamese Nutshell

Visiting Vietnam has been on my wander-list for a while now, and one of my resolutions in 2014 was to make a trip to Hanoi. You can imagine my excitement when I got a call from Ashman, Air Asia's very own fashionista, asking me whether I'd like to go on my 3rd AABC adventure - on their newly reopened route from Kuala Lumpur -- Da Nang, Vietnam!


Being the only airline to fly directly to Da Nang from KL, not an empty seat could be found on our inaugural flight, which took off from the all-new KLIA2 on 29th August 2014. Landing in Da Nang International Airport after a 2 hour and 55 min journey (plus a great catch up session with Anna and Caroline), we got to experience the water salute as we cruised down the runway! We were also greeted by the who's who of Da Nang tourism, who were all smiles and ready for the press conference, and where we got our first taste of authentic Vietnamese cuisine! As we landed at 1330 local time (Da Nang is one hour behind Malaysian time), a well-appreciated buffet was prepared for the local media and us bloggers.


So what should you know about Da Nang? 

Location: Central Vietnam, on the coast of the South China Sea, South East Asia
Currency: Vietnamese Dongs, and US Dollars
Weather: Ranges from 18°C to 34°C, with the rainy season being from September to March                               (Unfortuantely, our trip end August also got rained out)
Time Zone: GMT +7 (One hour behind Malaysia)
Language: Vietnamese (little English)
Electricity: 220V
Souvenirs: The usual trinkets are not easily found, but foodstuff is readily available.

Da Nang at Sunset as seen from Ala Carte Hotel
Photo credits as per watermark
And how can you get to this dazzling destination?

Well, Air Asia flies 4x weekly to Da Nang every Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday. Booking flights is easy peasy with the Air Asia app (available on all major mobile phones), their mobile site mobile.airasia.com, or the old-fashioned way of just checking out their website www.airasia.com!


I'll be blogging about the different places we visited and my experience real soon, so as always, do stay tuned!

Love always,
Calista xx

Tuesday, 21 October 2014

Cut's Gallery x Milbon Deesse's - Japanese Hair Treatment in KK!

We all know the saying "Your hair is your crowning glory", and no one could deny that having soft, silky hair is the best accessory you can have - I think a good hair day beats a full face of make-up hands down!

But finding a good hair treatment worth the price you have to pay at the salons can be tough - how many times have you paid over RM100 for a treatment which loses its effects the very next time you wash your hair?

I was introduced to Milbon Deesse's by Florence on my last trip to Cut's Gallery Hair Salon. The claimed benefits? A quick-n-easy 3-step salon treatment which includes 4 weekly home care ampoules, designed to improve the feel of the hair instantly, in only 10 -15 minutes. Too good to be true? I had to try it out.


Walking into Cut's Gallery is always a joy as you can just feel the relaxation that's about to happen to you. Starting from the basics, Cut's is definitely one of the best places to get your hair washed and blow-dried - by everyone's favourite Percy! Mom was upset that I took Percy from her that day haha, but sorry mom, the head massage denies me the ability to feel any guilt! =P


Percy talked me through the steps of Deesse's hair treatment, which will take 10 - 15 mins from consultation to blow dry!
My hair before the treatment
First off - After examining your hair and selecting the appropriate treatment type (Deesse's carries 3 different types for fine-normal, normal-coarse, and course & unruly hair), shampoo (your salon's Percy should give you an amazing head massage as they get your hair and scalp squeaky clean =P).


Apply step 1 - Your stylist will squeeze out excess water from your hair before slowly rubbing the orange and grapefruit scented treatment lotion into hair strands. My hair falls into the coarse and unruly category, but step 1 contains amino oil which smoothes out the surface bumps on each strand of hair.

Apply step 2 directly after step 1 - Unlike most hair treatments, step 2 of Deesse's hair treatment is applied directly on top of step 1. Starting from hair ends and working your way up, your stylist will massage the treatment until your hair softens, then comb through with fingers, before rinsing it off.

Apply step 3 after rinsing - the only part of the treatment process where you'll need to wait. Step 3 is applied from hair ends upwards after squeezing out excess water. You'll get another massage (yay!) before rinsing with cold water.


And ta-da! Silky, smooth, manageable hair, just like that!
After my hair was dried and trimmed following the treatment
After curling

Deesse's also comes with Step 4, aka Home Care - You will be given 4 tubes of home care treatment which contains aqua collagen, to be used once a week at home so you can enjoy flippable hair for more than a month! After shampooing, squeeze out excess water, apply step 4 from the ends, wrap with a damp towel or shower cap for 10 - 15 minutes (i used a towel cz I dont have a shower cap), then rinse and blow dry as normal!
Clockwise from top left
Verdict? I just finished my home care treatment, and I'm still loving the softness and shine of my hair! See for yourself:

Milbon Deesse's Hair Treatment costs RM140 - 170 in Cut's Gallery Hair Salon & Academy.

Address: 5th Floor, Palm Square, Centerpoint Shopping Complex, Kota Kinabalu, Sabah.
Call for Appointment088-233386


GOOD NEWS FOR MEN!!

Now also open:
The Gentlemen's Club by Cuts Gallery
The Gentlemen's Club is a division of Cuts Gallery Hair Salon, dedicated to giving the best men's styles and cuts the traditional way - including hot towel shaves and the like!
You can also take up the Cut's Gallery Scissor Salute Challenge! Contact them for more details..
Also available at Cuts Gallery are these awesome Virginstone anchor and rope bracelets, all the way from Australia! I've got mine, and I'm in love! There are loads of different colour combinations and designs to choose from, but I trust Florence's sense of style, and she wasnt wrong!


Love always,
Calista xx

Thursday, 9 October 2014

The Roller Coaster Months

Hey guys!


I know I haven't been blogging for a while, so I thought I'd give a short update on what's been happening - a lot!It's been a heck of a ride, but definitely a lot more highs than lows...


THE UPS


Chevrolet will be Man U's new sponsor for the next 7 years
After the Adidas Neo shoot with Sham, I was the Chevrolet girl at Sabah's ATAS Motor Show, being one of the very first to wear the brand new Manchester United jersey.


The Rolls Royce Wraith x Breeze Magazine editorial also came out - what dya think?

Couldnt resist getting a photo in one of Da Nang's famed basket boats on Da Nang Beach
Always a proud AABC member, I had the chance to visit Vietnam's newest destination with Air Asia - Da Nang! It was like a dream come true, since my 2014 bucket list was to visit Vietnam.. Only problem is, Da Nang has made me wanna go to Hanoi even more now!

The friendliest sabre tooth tiger - Diego from Ice Age!
So what's been keeping me so busy? Aha.. Well, I've been based in Genting for the past month, and won't be leaving til end of October! I'm emceeing for 20th Century Fox World's Ice Age Adventure here at the Genting International Convention Center, so if you wanna meet Sid, Scrat or Diego, make sure you get here before October 26th! =D

Best part about my time in Genting? Steamboat!

THE DOWNS



I did get into a little drama last month when someone who shall remain unnamed posted a couple of vulgar facebook statuses, followed by a paparazzi-like photo of me walking past during a bloggers' outing up at Genting. After escalating things into a local forum, including spreading my facebook links and photos, things have thankfully died down. Although this was disrespectful and a blatant violation of privacy, I'm just glad it didnt blow out of proportion.

To be honest, I think this is the biggest 'down' that I can actually remember in recent months, at least, the only down worth mentioning. No complaints, for sure! We all run into bumps in the road, but I guess the journey would be pretty boring if it was smooth sailing all the way; or so they say. I'd actually prefer a one-shot-to-the-top kinda life, but who wouldn't huh? =P

'Cause after everything is over and done, it's still a beautiful world~
Love always,
Calista xx