Go back to the enewsletter Since SriLankan Airlin

Go back to the enewsletter Since SriLankan Airlin

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first_imgGo back to the e-newsletterSince SriLankan Airlines introduced its daily Melbourne–Colombo service, beautiful and serene Sri Lanka has become even more desirable. UL605 leaves Melbourne at the civilised hour of 16:55 and arrives in the Sri Lankan capital at 22:15 the same day.My suggestion is to spend the first two nights at the just-opened Shangri-La Hotel, Colombo (they pick you up, land-side, on arrival in a purple Jaguar; – a stylish welcome). There is, in fact, lots of colour around: this two-month-old luxury hotel might have colourless Lasvit chandeliers, many in lotus shapes, but artworks are big and bold, and any event in the ballroom seems to use as many colours of the rainbow as possible. Advantages of staying here are numerous: the LifeFitness gym is 24/7 (useful after that flight); The CHI Spa works with Kerstin Florian; there is a lovely outdoor pool with sensational sunset views and the Wi-Fi is really really good.The 32-floor building will eventually be part of a mammoth retail, offices and residence towers complex, representing a Kuok investment of some US$500 million. It soars up behind the famous Galle Face Green sculpture of legendary former Prime Minister Bandaranaike (who rejoiced in the forenames Solomon West Ridgeway Dias), a couple of hundred yards south of the former InterCon, now the Kingsbury, and the Galadari, once Le Méridien. For old times’ sake, I walked along Galle Face Drive to the Galle Face Hotel, passing the same traders and local picnickers who have been here since time immemorial; goods still include elaborate paper kites, but small stalls now have solar panels.Shangri-La has a growing brand awareness, and the hotel’s 500 rooms are doing good business (choose a room with access to the Horizon Club – I personally like corner suites in the -23 series, for views west out to sea and south along Galle Face Green). The hotel, under GM Tim Wright, is a haven for those who want modern comforts. Business comes from banks and all the other entities that make a capital city grow. In addition, one year ago – after Tim Wright arrived here – ‘they’ started making sandcastles out at sea in the Indian Ocean. And just as one load of sand followed another and another to create what is going to be bigger than Palm Jumeirah off Dubai.In under 51 weeks, an enormous area is being built up out of the sea. This is part of what billboards says is a US$15 billion investment, coming from China Communications Construction Company under its chairman, Liu Qitao. Out there in the ocean – or now on top of it – three shifts toil 24 hours a day, building what will be one of the ends of China’s ‘One Belt, One Road’ initiative (it will have hotels, malls, theme parks, hospitals, residences and offices). Fine, if there are all those buildings coming up on the new island, it is certain that the thousands of people living and/or working there will flock to best-in-town when it comes to dining.Colombo’s Ministry of Crab restaurant in the Dutch Hospital Shopping Precinct has topped the popularity stakes but already, since the opening of Shangri-La Hotel, Colombo, its restaurants, all designed by Ryoichi Niwata, have become sell-outs. Obviously, being Shangri-La, there is Shang Palace for Chinese; buffets at the superb all-day Table One are memorable (try the grill’s prawns, with a make-your-own salad), and if you are hungry for home, Capital Bar & Grill serves sensationally juicy and flavourful steaks from the Greenham family’s Cape Grim farms.And then, after a day to explore Colombo, head south to Galle, which was full of surprises from the beginning to end of my stay. First, the walled fort area of Old Galle offers endless bastion walks and today there seemed to be brides all over the place. I was obviously there on an auspicious day, which seems to happen very often. Even before the sun came up, around 6.30am, there were dozens of happy couples with full wedding party retinues, posing and walking around the centre of the old town (some of the ladies must have been up all night having their hair done, pearls put in place and, in some instances, being poured into Spandex undergarments before their elaborate gowns would fit).Amangalla is the only luxury place to stay. The charming and loveable GM, Sean Flakelar, is a former Sydney chef who only switched to ops after his then-GM, at a hotel I will not mention, was consistently rather the worse for the bottle. Although it only opened as such in 2004, Amangalla has seen so much in its lifetime. The four-floor structure was constructed as two buildings in 1684 to house Dutch military officers. It passed to British army headquarters, by which time there was regular two-horse carriage service to Colombo, in 12.5 hours (it is now three hours by car). In 1863 it became the New Oriental Hotel, and in 1899 Albert Ephramus paid 40,000 rupees for it, but sadly not only did four of his children die in infancy but also all five children of his granddaughter, Anestasia Emmeline (Nesta) Ephramus Brothier, died before she did. Nesta had been born in the hotel in 1905, and in 1995, now widowed into the bargain, she signed it over to Adrian Zecha. Hence its rebirth as an Aman.Think of Raffles in Singapore, blend in Yangon’s The Strand and add a huge dose of Aman magic and this is the result. The three-floor exterior is complemented by all-white interiors with polished wide wood floorboards, grey window shutters, and a gorgeously lush rear garden with Olympic pool and five permanent cabanas. A one-time row of tiny shops has evolved into a serious five-room spa, with hot and icy bath soaking rooms. The front terrace, on Church Street, morphs into an interior lobby restaurant-bar and the rear lobby, which leads into a library, with Nesta memorabilia and a shaving salon, with two additional chairs for mani- and pedicures.No, I did not even miss having a gym as sunset and sunrise hikes taking me all around the ramparts of this fascinating old town more than sufficed – and when I got back, perfumed rolled terry towels were offered on a silver tray (and my 6am wake-up cafetière arrived on the dot).At dinner, GM Sean Flakelar filled in details of the annual Fairway Galle Literary Festival. This year his hotel guests for the festival include Alexander McCall Smith and Dame Maggie Smith, the last talking on the serious business of being funny. I hope she was in Sean Flakelar’s favourite room, number eight, up 56 somewhat-precarious wood stairs to the top floor, but the views, south and west, are said to be superb. I was in suite 22, looking out into that quiet garden. This is a place that de-stresses after walking around town: it is also de-stressing merely sitting in the open-sided lobby or on its terrace, with fans whirring high overhead. Have afternoon tea here – it is included in the room rate – a full English-style affair, with hot scones and cream and three-tier curates’ stands of savoury and sweet one-bites. Breakfast is also included, as are the non-alcohol mini-bar, and Wi-Fi (good, again).I met up with Yvonne Verstandig of Executive Edge Travel in Melbourne, who had flown over, on SriLankan, with her husband Allan. Yes, she will be back, she says! I also really enjoyed meeting the charming and charismatic new chef here, Sagar Rajput, and I cannot wait to see how he enhances the menus at this gorgeous luxury hotel. For those who are interested, by the way, I passed on breakfast’s suggested Sri Lankan omelette – open-face and spicy thanks to onions, tomato and green chilli, – in favour of unadorned sunny-side up with a side of avocado.Mary Gostelow travels over 300 days a year, doing one-night stands in top hotels around the world. Read her daily travelogue, www.girlahead.comGo back to the e-newsletterlast_img

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YWCA of Olympia Announces 2014 Women of Achievement

first_imgFacebook67Tweet0Pin0 Submitted by YWCA of Olympia20th Annual Gala Honors South Sound Women Making Positive Impact in the CommunityThe words are powerful, the impact broad, the commitment unquestionable.“She is an incredible representation of female empowerment, strength and sense of self.”“Her professional achievements and her personal experiences have influenced so many people in our community to face the reality of racism and sexism.”“She has held a strong belief in giving women and girls educational opportunities to step themselves out of dangerous or poverty driven situations”“She believes in the power of education to open doors for people from all walks of life, particularly those who have lacked access to systems of power”The YWCA of Olympia is pleased to announce their 2014 Women of Achievement:Dr. Rhonda Coats, Racial Justice Award Dr. Rhonda CoatsVice President for Student Services at South Puget Sound Community College, Dr. Coats is a long-time advocate for access, retention, and success for students of color and other underrepresented student groups and she led efforts to establish and maintain the SPSCC Diversity & Equity Center.Rev. Marti EnsignRev. Marti EnsignMinister and Humanitarian, Rev. Ensign has helped women locally and internationally for the last 60 years. Marti received her BA in pre-med in 1958 followed by graduate degree, was the first woman to be fully ordained as a Free Methodist Minister, and served on the task force to begin the medical program at Hope Africa University in Burundi.  As a member of Soroptimist of Olympia International she implemented the Hope Africa Scholarship to help women obtain medical education.Lynn Grotsky, LICSWLynn GrotskyCo-founder, Board President, past volunteer Executive Director, Facilitator Consultant and Event Coordinator of Pizza Klatch. Lynn, a clinical social worker, also was one of the founders of Thurston County’s Monarch Children’s Justice and Advocacy Center where she established and directed a therapy program for abused children and their families. In 1989, she and her wife, Lisa Brodoff, won a landmark lesbian second parent adoption case in Washington State, paving the way for same-sex parents to legally adopt here and throughout the nation.Dr. Leticia Nieto, Racial Justice AwardDr. Leticia NietoDr. Nieto is a Psychotherapist, Certified Psychodramatist, Accredited Playback Theatre Trainer, and Anti-Oppression Educator and Author specializing in cross-cultural communication, motivation and creativity. Dr. Nieto is a Professor in the Master of Arts in Counseling Psychology Program at Saint Martin’s University.Christy PetersChristy PetersCurrently, the Administration Chief at the Thurston County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office, Christy has also served as former President of Junior League of Olympia, past President of the South Sound Reading Foundation, and currently serves on the Boards of NOVA School, the Olympia Youth Chorus, and the Olympia Downtown Rotary Club.Nominees were selected for their professional achievement(s), peer recognition, personal growth, demonstration and inspirational involvement in the community, and/or how she models her life in accordance with the YWCA of Olympia’s mission to empower women and eliminate racism through education, advocacy, service and leadership opportunities.The 20th Annual Women of Achievement Gala, Presented by Titus Will, will take place on Thursday, November 6th from 5:30pm – 9:00pm at the Red Lion Hotel Forest Ballroom. The event is open to the public and tickets ($80) will be available by contacting the YWCA of Olympia at 352-0593 or online at www.ywcaofolympia.org under Events. Once again Titus-Will has stepped up as the Women of Achievement Gala Presenting Sponsor with WSECU and Lucky Eagle for serving as our Sustaining Sponsors.The agency will release the name of their Young Woman of Achievement and Business of Achievement later this week.All photos courtesy of the YWCA of Olympia.last_img

Path to success: Shubhman Gill wants a change in mindset in order to adapt…

first_imgImage Courtesy: The HinduAdvertisement 5aiww9NBA Finals | Brooklyn Vs84tWingsuit rodeo📽Sindre Ee2( IG: @_aubreyfisher @imraino ) f9Would you ever consider trying this?😱6hds3czCan your students do this? 🌚97t0lRoller skating! Powered by Firework After earning his maiden test call-up for the South Africa series, Shubhman Gill feels ready to take the next step after conquering the junior level. Advertisement Image Courtesy: The HinduShubhman Gill feels that he does not need to make changes to his game but needs to tweak his mindset to make himself set at the highest level. In a chat with ESPN Cricinfo just days ahead of his first home tour, the U-19 World Cup’s leading run-scorer talked about the challenges lying ahead in the journey.The batsman revealed that he got advice from Yuvraj Singh regarding how to keep his life on and off the field apart. He said:Advertisement  “He’s spoken to me about keeping my focus on cricket and let other aspects of professional life (endorsements, player management) aside. Guidance is very important in these aspects. Yuvraj didn’t want me to sign with any player management company at the start of my career. He said ‘just go and play, forget about these things. I didn’t sign anyone.”Gill also talked about his calm nature and his approach to adapting to various situations on the field. He stated:Advertisement I am calm, but it’s also something I’ve learnt from my father – he had the patience and calmness to keep throwing 200-300 balls in the nets when I was a kid.It’s just about calculating the situations, assessing what the team needs, and how your decisions will affect or benefit the team at a certain time. You have to take risks at times. My mindset is such that I don’t think about what will happen if I play a certain shot and get out. You have to be calm to make decisions under pressure.Read Also:Mystery unraveled: Sanjay Bangar reveals selection criteria behind the No.4 spotVirat Kohli reminisces his early career as DDCA unveils a stand in his name Advertisementlast_img

Tributes pour in for Phil Hughes on his 5th death Anniversary

first_imgAdvertisement 3kmNBA Finals | Brooklyn Vs583jsqWingsuit rodeo📽Sindre Ead9ar( IG: @_aubreyfisher @imraino ) 0Would you ever consider trying this?😱6lCan your students do this? 🌚sjc3Roller skating! Powered by Firework Four star Australian cricketers paid their tribute to Phil Hughes who passed away five years back after being hit by a bouncer. Phil Hughes was a great cricketer, he had always been popular amongst his friends.Advertisement The posts of his fellow cricketers Michael Clarke, David Warner, Steve Smith and Aaron Finch in the various social media handles are certainly suggesting that Phil Hughes is certainly still in their hearts after five years.Advertisement The death of Phil Hughes after being hit by a bouncer was one of the saddest incidents ever happened in a cricket field. His fellow cricketers and the whole cricketing World will never be able to forget such an incident in their lifetime.In his Instagram post, the former Australian cricketer Michael Clarke wrote few lines on his friend.Advertisement Steve Smith also paid his condolences to his friend in his Instagram post including the cap number of Phil Hughes. The cap number of Hughes was 408.On the other hand, the opener of Australia, David Warner also mentioned the cap number of Hughes and posted it in Instagram to show tribute to the cricketer.The same thing was posted by the other opener of Australia, Aaron Finch too.With the references of these posts it is clearly visible that Hughes is still present there in the mind of his friends.Watch: Man Utd defender Phil Jones displays his ‘skills’ before AC Milan match Advertisementlast_img

India close in on unbelievable 300 medal mark at the South Asian Games –…

first_imgImage Courtesy: AIFF/IANS/Pro KabbadiAdvertisement iNBA Finals | Brooklyn VsfvbWingsuit rodeo📽Sindre E4e3nsu( IG: @_aubreyfisher @imraino ) hceWould you ever consider trying this?😱lkCan your students do this? 🌚kezhtRoller skating! Powered by Firework The Indian athletes have shown absolute domination at the 2019 South Asian Games. Back on 7th December, the fourth day of the tournament, they smashed the all time record tally by winning a staggering 56 medals in a single day, and crossed the 100 medal mark in the championship. Well, it didn’t just stop at that number. Yesterday, they secured 42 medals, which includes 27 gold. This has upped India’s medal count to a monumental 294, almost crossing the triple century mark in the total medals won.Advertisement Image Courtesy: AIFF/IANS/Pro KabbadiLooking at the split of the total number of medals won, India has secured 159 gold, 91 silver and 44 bronze after the 8th day of the tournament. Additionally, they have further widened the gap with the hosts Nepal, who are trailing behind with a total of 195 medals, including 49 gold, 54 silver and 92 bronze. Sri Lanka are still in third place, with 39 gold, 79 silver and 118 bronze totaling to 236.All the medals India has won yesterday are listed below-Advertisement Boxing: The maximum number of gold was secured in boxing. Six Indian boxers secured a gold each in their own respective categories. Ankit Khatana won gold in the men’s 75 kg category. Vinod Tanwar’s gold came in men’s 49 kg category. Sachin Siwach secured one in the men’s 56 kg category. Gaurav Chauhan bagged one in the men’s 91 kg category., Kalaivani Srinivasan and Parveen Hooda are the female boxers who brought two golds each, in the 48 kg and 60 kg categories respectively.Wrestling: Two golds were secured in wrestling, one in each of men’s and women’s categories. National gold medalist Gaurav Baliyan won one in the men’s 74 kg. In the women’s 68 kg category, Anita Sheoran bagged a gold. She previously won a gold medal at the 2010 Commonwealth Games in Delhi.Fencing: The Indian women fencers secured two golds with wins in both the fencing events yesterday. A single gold was bagged by the men’s team.Basketball: Two golds were won in the 3×3 basketball discipline. The men’s and women’s teams both won one gold each.Kabbadi: Both the teams won a gold each by defeating their opponents in the Kabbadi final round. The men’s team overpowered Sri Lanka 51-18, while the hosts were dominated 50-13 by the women’s team.Shooting: A single gold came in the mixed event category. The 2010 Commonwealth Games gold medalist Annu Raj Singh and youngster Shravan Kumar together grabbed the podium finish.Women’s Football: The women’s football team took on Nepal in the final yesterday, and won the match 2-0, thanks to a brace by Ngangom Bala Devi, who plays as a forward in the Manipur Police Sports Club in the Indian Women’s League. She is also the highest goal scorer in the tournament, with 5 goals in 4 matches. Advertisementlast_img

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