Feb 25, 2010

Note to All...

This weekend only Gap offers 40% off all regular-priced menswear.

Feb 22, 2010

Scandinave Spa

As usually, me and Zaika didn't do anything particularly romantic this St. Vals. I didn't complain (we had a great evening watching Olympic figure skating with friends), but have asked for a trip to Collingwood's Scandinave Spa the weekend after. Zaika did his own research, and gave me a firm "yes" on the trip, so I went ahead inviting Capa to come along.

Both me and Capa slept on the way to Collingwood, leaving driving to Zaika (I think he is used to the arrangement by now). We got to the spa by noon, an hour behind the proposed schedule, and were greeted by a smiling attendant who informed us about a 2-hour average wait. Scandinave spa has a "no reservations" policy, and Saturday happens to be the busiest day of the week. After all, the wait wasn't that bad, but we've learned the lesson: arrive either before 11a.m., or after 5p.m. on weekends to avoid lineups. The visit to the spa is $45 per person, but we opted to rent robes ($12 each), and have a light lunch later ($45 for three). Robes proved to be a good move, while lunch was disappointing. Next time we will stick to a cup of tea after baths, and have food in the Village.

We've collected our complimentary towels and rental robes and were shown into the change rooms. The second, and last, disappointment, was the size of the lockers. The comfort was minimal with too many people cramped in a small space. However, the place was clean and the facilities were well-equipped.

The baths themselves were great! The ritual includes a warm-up in a steam room, a sauna, or a hot pool, an ice-cold plunge, and then a 15-minute relaxation. The cycle is repeated as many times as desired, with a usual visit lasting 2-4 hours. My favorite part was the eucalyptus-infused steam room. It felt like every time I inhaled the fragrant steam, I did something good for my body. A truly therapeutic experience.
The spa is open every day of the year, rain or snow. Weekdays are typically less busy, and Wednesdays are discounted ($35/visit). Packages, gift certificated, and massages are also available. Visit Scandinave Spa site for more details.



I Got...

Image from ssense.com
Diesel jeans (in a slightly darker wash). On sale for $170.

Hungry Bloggers' Notes

One of my greatest indulgences is eating out. I equally love fine dining, less-then-casual bites in Annex, and authentic Indian on Gerard (I wish I could get up there more often). My boyfriend says that there is nothing I won't eat-I can find beauty in any dish regardless of the ingredients. The biggest problem with eating out (aside from the number of calories consumed with any meal) is money. I trip to a fine dining restaurant is at least $100 with only one or two glasses of wine. Even casual places like Spring Rolls or Yorkville's Sushi Inn can be pricey by the time drinks, appetizers, and deserts are accounted for.

So, in the light of spending less and saving more this year, I've been thinking about ways to make dining out more budget-friendly. I've decided to stay away from posh downtown eateries and only stick to monthly oyster dinners with my dear friend Ruzanna. After all, seafood and Champaign can elevate the grimmest Winter mood-and that's priceless! Another exception would be visiting a new place with Capa and reviewing it after.

Next, I've committed to bringing lunches from home thus saving an average of $7/day. I am trying to make weekday meals healthy and possibly even vegetarian so I won't have guilt trips when consuming bone marrow at the Black Hoof (the review is coming up soon!). I am also cutting back on deserts and high-calorie sweet aperitifs (think rainbow-colored martinis and mixed drinks).

Aside from all the "lifestyle" changes, I've been actively searching for specials, Fix Prix menus, and Happy Hours. Winterlicious came and went, and I was hungry for the new deals and tasting menus. My efforts were rewarded with Dine.to site that not only provides comprehensive reviews of Toronto restaurants, but also offers wide range of coupons and specials that can be used in the featured restaurants. I love the variety of cuisines, locations, and price ranges. Anything from $4.99 breakfast or $100 Prix Fix menu is listed along with the restaurants' contact info.

I will be monitoring the site and posting the best deals here.


Feb 18, 2010

40% off Everything at Gap-Today Only

The Spring military-inspired collection is great, and the sale items are a real bargain.


Feb 17, 2010

$19 Cashmere Scarves at Club Monaco

Sale alert: Club Monaco has 100% cashmere scarves on sale for $19 (down from $99). Blue and purple are on sale, however black one is still regular price.

Feb 15, 2010

Which One to Choose?

Diesel Sublime Bag, US $350
Diesel Illusion Bag, US $280


Image from littleburgundyshoes.com

I first came by #704B brand at the Little Burgundy's site while shopping for some deals on boots. These boots looked beyond good - quality, style, leather lining… I got this pair right away (they've proved to be amazing!). Because I loved the styles so much, I did some research on the brand and..oooops..couldn't find anything. The shoes showed up on a few shopping sites, but there was no indication of a homepage or any other source of organized info. I've even asked our expert friend Nelia from the StyleBlog if she knew something about the brand.

Just when I was ready to give up, I came across a free advertorial magazine that had a special feature on #704B! Apparently, the brand is Modern Vintage's little sis with more wearable, classic designs and better pricing (average pair of boots is $300-350). Little Burgundy caries a selection of their styles and discounts them well at the end of the season. For Spring they have this amazing Panyk shoe (pictured) for $198. This is a perfect office shoe- mid-heel, classic pip-toe with a twist. I can see it going perfectly with my pencil skirt and a chiffon raffled blouse.

Also, on my Spring/Summer shoe shopping list is a pair of while mid-heels, new Adidas sneakers (black/silver or black/white), and good-quality dull silver flats.

Don't spend too much,

Feb 11, 2010

Feb 7, 2010

I Want...

Sweater by Only, $69
Top by Only, $49
Both at Style Exchange . Check out their clearance sale, up to 70% off.

For the Diesel Fans

If you love Diesel, and know how their items fit, then this site is for you. Surplus Clothing is the official Diesel outlet in Canada. Unfortunately, the selection is limited and some pieces are 4-5 seasons behind (remember those fuchsia color blocked Ts from 2007?). But some things are really worth looking at, like the above-pictured trench and short jacket, less then $200 each.

Chrishabana by Chris Habana

Images: ssense.com

Here is a not-so-newcomer-a New York-based jewelry line that plays with dark, Gothic elements in the pop culture context. The line debuted in 2004, and since them became the favourite of such non-main streamers as Bjork. I will let the pictures talk for themselves, but for those who are interested, you can get Chrishabana at ssense.com.

Winterlicious Drake

Squash and Pumpkin cream soup is a part of Drake's Winterlicious menu

I've decided to write a quick note on our visit to the Drake Hotel's renowned restaurant for the Winterlicious. I'll make it quick-the food is good, but be prepared to spend at least $150 (for 2 people), regardless of the $35 prix fix.

First, the wine list for the event is beyond bad-the Canadian wines offered are barely tolerable, very flat, and lacking character. So, chances are you'll end up ordering something from the regular wine list -a $14/glass average. Then, a 18% gratuity is added to your bill. The service is not $18%-tip good, so I consider it a stretch. And lastly, there is simply too much food to consume and enjoy. I with the dinner was $25 with half the food.

On a good note, the crowd is just right with a good mix of well-established 30-somethings and up-and-coming youngsters.


I Got...

Mirarchi by 704B boots. $325, on sale for $69.99 at the Little Burgundy.

Feb 4, 2010

Aerial Performances at Nathan Phillips Square, Feb 5

As a part of Wintercity, the aerial productions by Compagnie Les Passagers combine theatre, dance and acrobatics, all performed to original musical scores on a massive vertical stage. The next show is upcoming Friday.


This extravgant Bollywood-style performance brings to life the melodrama, humour, colour and of course, the fabulous music and dance of the Indian movie industry.
Friday, February 5, 8 pm, Nathan Phillips Square

More performances and schedules as a part of Wintercity at toronto.ca


Feb 2, 2010

note to all...

Look out for Second Cup's two-for-one coupons in Metro Toronto February 3-5.

Wine And Chocolate Pairing Tours

The wineries of Niagara region will be hosting special wine and chocolate pairing tours every weekend in February. Passes are $30 and are valid for all 22 wineries. More info here.

Feb 1, 2010

Blog to Check Out...

Cinnamon Kitten-new make-up trends, new products, reviews, opinions, deals...

It's a Social Media Week, Feb 1-5

who ever is into marketing, it's a Social Media Week in Toronto.
I'm personally a bit bored of the term and "it's importance for communicating the brand values to the consumer" blah blah, but...

the schedule of the events is at smw-toronto.sched.org