How to Spend a Week in Ubud

There is so much to do in Bali and a week is just too short to see it all. We weren’t able to meet up with Instafriends in Canggu, we didn’t get to see the epic sunrises everyone talks about at the beaches, and we didn’t have time to squeeze in a day trip to the Lembongan Island. However, we made the most of the time we had and jammed our schedule to fit in at least 10 major activities during our trip.

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Mandapa, A Ritz-Carlton Reserve

After an hour and some change at the airport and another hour in traffic, we turned left into a narrow alleyway and started questioning whether the driver knew where he was going. Within a few short minutes, we arrive to a gated property and stop right in front of a lobby, where we were warmly greeted with fragrant floral lei’s and a welcome drink. We arrived, after 20+ hours of traveling; we have arrived to a place we were going to call “home” for the next few days.

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Simple Health: Quick Prescriptions & No Office Visits

Growing up in an Asian household meant that communication was poor, expectations and standards were high, and nothing you did was good enough. At least that was my experience. We never talked about sex, we were expected to learn what we needed from school but even then, resources for birth control pills were limited. Since my medical insurance was through my mother, I was unable to gain access to birth control pills from my regular doctor, which left me with Planned Parenthood. However, the long waits and uncomfortable silence in the waiting rooms wasn’t my idea of a Saturday afternoon.

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Sunset Villas by Monarch Luxury Villas

The last family trip I had was during my teenage years and I think it was one of those tours from LA to Yosemite, on a bus filled with other families. I didn’t have the best time and I never wanted to go on another trip after that, however with my nephew turning 1, I knew I had to celebrate in a big way. Our family dynamics have shifted after his arrival and we are much closer now than in the last decade, so it was the perfect opportunity to go to one of my favorite cities for the weekend, San Diego. Luckily, I was able to partner up with Monarch Luxury Villas to ensure this family trip would be a success —and it was!

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His First Facial, Ever

If you don’t already know, OSEA is my favorite skincare brand and has been for the last two years. There is no other brand I trust more especially after battling cystic acne. Not only is OSEA located in California, they are also family own and is committed to non-toxic beauty by using only plant-based, vegan ingredients. You can literally just feel the difference with OSEA and as much as I rave about it, there is no better way to say it than to prove it. Therefore, I decided to treat KSOLE to his first ever facial and of course, it had to be with OSEA.

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Burke Williams Day Spa in Pasadena

I consider Burke Williams one of the OG’s when it comes to day spas. I remember seeing a Burke Williams Day Spa when I was in high school and dreamt about the day I could spend a relaxing afternoon there. Fast forward to 12 years later, yeah it took me awhile, but I finally got my wish and the best part is that I got to share this experience with KSOLE.

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Travel Guide: Kauai

Kauai is the 4th largest island and is often called the Garden Island. Known for its beautiful rainforests, the Napali coast, Waimea Canyon, and 111 miles of coastline, Kauai has more accessible beaches than any of the other Hawaiian Islands. There are 8 major waterfalls on the island with Waipoo in Waimea Canyon being the highest, falling at 800 feet. If you’re looking for a place to disconnect, explore and spend the majority of the time outdoors, than look no further because Kauai is it.

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Grand Hyatt Kauai

Waking up before the sunrise in LA is out of the question for me, as my view from my apartment isn’t anything spectacular. However, it was a breeze waking up at 6AM each morning at the Grand Hyatt Kauai. With the sunrise around 6:30AM, it gave me enough time to get my coffee, settle into our balcony, and watch the skies turn into shades of pink and orange. I couldn’t get enough of it and with the pond right below us, watching the swans and koi fish swimming around just put me in the best mood everyday. Then again, you’re in Kauai, so can you really complain about anything?

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Miramonte Resort and Spa

The best thing you can do for yourself is make yourself a priority, even just for a weekend. I promise you’ll feel much more focused, refreshed, and energized after a weekend away in Indian Wells at Miramonte Resort and Spa. Take a friend, a sister or your better half if you wish or just getaway on your own. It’s not only needed, but it is necessary.

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Hotel Monaco Portland

Alongside our welcome tray was hand-written postcard from the front desk welcoming me. Sure, notes are standard for guests but this postcard also had little hand drawn graphics of all the places I visited on my last trip in Portland - places I blogged about in this post. I love when a hotel does their research and takes the time out to know who they are expecting, it shows that they really do care (and being a fan of my blog is a major plus!)

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Four Seasons Punta Mita

Punta Mita is a gated peninsula, secluded and protected by a security booth at the front of the entrance. Beyond these gates was our home for the four days, the Four Seasons. The drive through the peninsula was filled with palm trees and an amazing ocean view, which our driver paused briefly to allow us to admire it. Upon arriving at the hotel we were taken aback by how large the property really is. 

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Pier Market

Pier Market is the first 100% SF green business certified restaurant and the first on the entire Fisherman's Wharf. They are 3rd generation family-owned, and the owner of the restaurant is the one who built Pier 39, which I found to be really cool. The seafood is 100% sustainable and delivered fresh every day. We were so impressed by these facts that we did hold some high expectations for our dining experience. 

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Alexander's Steakhouse San Francisco

Chef Peggy Tan and her staff curated a special tasting menu for us that evening, which showcased a few of their most popular dishes and a couple of unique staples like the hamachi shooters, that are given as starters. Throughout the night, each course became more engaging in flavors and presentation. No two dishes tasted the same and each one left us anxiously waiting to see what the Chef had up next.

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Packing for a 3-Day Getaway

Not sure if it's just me, but I feel that shorter trips are always harder to pack for. Considering half our luggage is filled with tech gear such as our laptops, camera & lenses, tripod, etc., it can get tricky utilizing the remaining space. While there are plenty of tricks on Youtube on methods of packing a carry-on, I decided to share my own tidbits and tips for a three-day, in addition to what the must-have outfits are for a getaway. 

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Café 21

Gaslamp is often known for party central, but did you know it is also home to one of the cutest and most delicious cafes in town? Café 21 is located right across from one of my favorite bars, Tipsy Crow, and features live music and a fun happy hour menu. However, we visited on a Saturday morning in search of brunch and are now marking this as a must-visit every time we’re in town.

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