Travel ~ 36. Romantic Romania.

When two of your best friends are from Romania, it’s obligatory to visit the country. This summer, it happened. It was my first time in the southeastern sovereign state of Europe. The Carpathian mountains surrounded us on our road trip to the third most populous city, Timișoara.

Driving by petrol stations, there were also manufacturing, technology and transport factories which showed that the country’s commerce and economy are doing well. From that, many more tourists will visit. Cruising in the countryside, the views were spectacular with lots of flowers and fields of grass to entertain the eye. I began to fall in love.

Arriving at my friend’s house, I received a warm welcome from an adorable dog. The photo below was taken right before he ran over and began to lick my feet. I think that was meant to be his way of saying hello. Either way, it was super ticklish. I started to laugh.

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Continuing our adventure, we headed to Timișoara’s city centre. First stop, Memorialul Revolutiei. It was a museum dedicated to the Revolution in 1989. I learned a lot about how the city was established and why things operate the way they do there from a 30 minute film.

 

Next, my friends and I drove to the central area and began to walk around Piața Unirii. Eventually, we found a spot to to have lunch. There were great drinks, salads and burgers at M Bistro. Nearby, we visited the Timișoara Art Museum. No photos were allowed but I enjoyed the baroque, classical and contemporary works of art.

 

Soon enough it was time to explore more. Wandering along the main street, we ended up passing through multiple squares where we saw the Timișoara City Hall, the beautiful and old Opera House, a majestic Metropolitan Cathedral and the check out Timișoara city sign.

 

Then that evening, there was a cultural event happening in the Roses Park. Strolling by the river, I saw cool graffiti. When we got to the park, we watched dancers from Romania, Serbia and Portugal perform in their traditional attire.

 

After that, it was time to drink and dine Romanian style. The best place to end the night was at Pensiunea Annette with good food and friends in Covaci, Timișoara. I would recommend to visit this resort.

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All photos taken by Niya Sinckler.

 

Music ~ Melbourne Mood.

The amazing Australian funk trio, Cookin’ on 3 Burners composed of Jake Mason, Dan West and Ivan Khatchoyan rose to success topping multiple European music charts when their 2009 song, “This Girl” was remixed by French producer, Valentin Brunel also known as  Kungs. The fun freestyle tune has beautiful beats and a dance vibe. Have a listen  😉

Culture ~ Communities Unite

Prayers and thoughts go out to the dozens dead and those affected by the bombings this morning in Brussels, Belgium.

According to Reuters, at least 34 people were killed and over 180 injured at Zaventem international airport and Maelbeek metro station during rush hour in the Belgian capital.

Speaking with friends who live in Brussels, it was a relief to know that they are out of harm’s way through the safety check on Facebook.

The city is on high alert at level 4. Airports are closed. Flights were cancelled. Metro stations are in lock down mode. People in Brussels are urged to remain at home to keep roads clear for emergency and security officials. Live updates are on Le Soir.

We all feel the effect as Europe has been targeted. The New York Times reported that ISIS claimed responsibility. With heightened security, many wonder will our modes of transport and travel begin to change over time to prevent explosions. It’s times like these where communities must unite. Standing together for solidarity and support is important to overcome extremism.

C

#PriepourBruxelles #PrayforBrussels #PrayforBelgium #TenirBon

Photography ~ Legendary Fashion Icon

Born in Santo Domingo, a renowned fashion icon died today at the age 82.

Known for his flare and style for the female figure, Oscar de la Renta clothed celebrity stars and royals over the years.

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Renowned fashion designer, Oscar de la Renta. Credit: Bergdorf Goodman.

In his early days, Oscar de la Renta studied painting at the Royal Academy of San Fernando in Madrid, Spain. As a quick learner, De la Renta became fascinated by the fashion industry. Oscar’s cuts, drapes and sketches gained him an apprenticeship with Cristobal Balenciaga. It was known that Oscar said, ” I design clothes for women to wear, I am not interested in shock tactics. I just want to make beautiful clothes.” Soon the Spanish house became his experimental creative world where he sent ideas to clients and built relationships with female presidential and ambassadors figures. Soon enough, Oscar left Spain to work as an assistant to Antonio del Castillo at Lanvin in Paris. It was a first to be in France loving the city of lights.

Wise words from the red carpet king include, “Style begins by looking good naked. It’s a discipline. And if you don’t dress well everyday, you lose habit. It’s not about what you wear, but about how you live your life.” And it was clear when Oscar took advice from Diana Vreeland to promote his reputation through working with Elizabeth Arden. By 1965, De la Renta proceeded to work for Seventh Avenue of Jane Derby. When she passed away, he took over the label. Following that, Oscar de la Renta starting his own label loved by many globally. In 1967 and 1968, Oscar won the Coty Award allowing him to become president of the Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA).

More than amazed, De la Renta launched his own fragrance, OSCAR in 1977 as well as an accessories line in 2001. Oscar de la Renta received a CFDA Lifetime Achievement Award in 1990. Meanwhile, De la Renta was designing for the house of Balmain from 1993 to 2002. What’s more, honorable awards of recognition were presented by King Juan Carlos of Spain, the French government and of course the Dominican Republic.

Then from international exposure in 2003, Oscar de la Renta expanded his markets for ready-to-wear lines in retail boutiques, online and exclusive wholesale partnerships. All you had to do was say Oscar and everyone knew who you were referring to, especially when it came to bridal wear a niche market which he continues to dominate annually.

Also, Oscar served as a board member at the Metropolitan Opera, Carnegie Hall, WNET and chairman at the Queen Sophia Spanish Institute. There are moments of magic sometimes from people in high places. Oscar de la Renta founded Casa del Niño orphanage in La Romana. Additionally, this past summer I visited one of my favorite boutique hotels, Tortuga Bay which was designed by Oscar de la Renta in Punta Cana. I loved the Dominican atmosphere and environment.

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Oscar Quote. Credit: T Magazine.

It’s the same warmth and admiration felt for numerous looks and pieces throughout Oscar de la Renta’s ready-to-wear and bridal collections. Oscar once said, “The qualities I most admire in women is confidence and kindness.” The fashion community truly mourns today as a one of the most inspiring fashion creatives is gone but will forever be remembered.

Travel

Lately, I’ve been looking up at the sky and seeing planes wondering where they’re heading…I think it’s time for a vacation. I’m going to start planning from now. Since prices are bound to go up soon as there are multiple airport renovations taking place. Watch out for the rise in fares, especially in Europe and South America for this summer. Time to pick a destination!