Irene's Travel Blog

Every Trip Is A Voyage Of Discovery


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Meeting Shinn In Lausanne!

Lausanne, Switzerland 

Shinn & Me!

I was really excited to come to Switzerland to meet Shinn in Lausanne. This is my first time meeting a friend overseas after 7 months of flying. Even though we have never spoken a single word to each other in school, our interests and love to travel has brought us together. So, I thought, why not visit Shinn in Lausanne since I will be flying to Switzerland. And I would really love to tour around École hôtelière de Lausanne (EHL). Coincidentally, my group did our semester 2.2 project based on building a educational-themed resort in Pulau Ubin, collaborating with EHL to offer diploma and degree courses. Can you imagine that I did my project based on this school and 2 years later, I am in Switzerland touring around the place? Wow, isn’t it so amazing..

Zurich HB Railway Station

I took a 10 minutes tram ride from my hotel to Zurich HB railway station and 2 hours and 11 minutes train ride to Lausanne.

First Class Cabin

Second Class Cabin

The seats in the first class cabin are pretty comfortable. I didn’t know I was holding a second class ticket until the train conductor came around to check the tickets. I had to shift to second class cabin after a nice 30 minutes nap in first class. :(

And…Guess what I saw when I woke up again from my nap?

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Snow-capped mountains! So b.e.a.u.t.i.f.u.l!

This is what I love about taking a train ride in Europe – looking out on the beautiful window-framed scenery! :)

École hôtelière de Lausanne

From Lausanne railway station, I took a 20 minutes metro ride to Croisette and 10 minutes bus ride to EHL. It was certainly a long journey to Lausanne from Zurich but it did not deter my determination. I felt great when I reached EHL cos my direction sense has definitely improved tremendously.

First HTM student to enter EHL

EHL is accepted industry-wide as the best hotel school in the world and I am so proud of Shinn for being the first HTM student to gain admission into EHL! I am sure this will pave the way for more HTM juniors to follow her footsteps.

Shinn took me around her school and introduced me to some of her friends. The students in EHL present themselves very well and it is also a school rule to wear business attire. They greet and acknowledge each other. I had to greet “Bonjour” here and there as we walked around the school. Here are some glimpses of the school..

Tutorial room

Berceau des Sens - Fine Dining Restaurant

This is the view guests get while having their meals at the fine dining restaurant.

Wine Tasting Studio

Kitchen

La Ferme - Causal Dining Restaurant

According to Shinn’s friend Cherie, her room is unfairly bigger than others and it is very true! Lucky babe! :)

Shinn's Room!

Shinn's Study Table

Autograph by Chef Paul Bocuse for Shinn!

Chef Paul Bocuse is honored as Chef of the Century and how impressive to have an opportunity to dine at his Michelin 3 stars restaurant and even meet him in person! Really envious!

After touring around her room, Shinn brought me to the town and we also visited the Cathedral, Kathedrale Notre-Dame.

Kathedrale Notre-Dame

Here is a question.. Why are the statues looking down? Is there a meaning to it? I realize that the statues are looking downwards in all the cathedrals that I have been to so far.

I also bought macaroons from Ladurée, which I did not manage to try it when I was in Paris. My favorite has got to be the pistachio flavor! Yum~

Shinn treated me to Mövenpick ice cream and I chose the pistachio flavor. I love pistachio!

Our next stop was Lake Geneva and I love this photo the most.

We ended our day with a nice dinner at Cafe Romand so that I can taste the authentic Swiss food here.

Cheese Fondue

We also had the Pork Knuckles.

It was really a lovely and comfortable evening with Shinn and we had so much to talk about ranging from school, work, life, travel, future and etc. It didn’t feel like we have only met and talked to each other for the very first time.

Shinn…Once again, I really appreciate you for taking the time out to plan the itinerary and bringing me around in Lausanne. Thanks for much for hosting me! There is so much passion in you for the hospitality industry and I am really happy for you to have this once-in-a-lifetime experience to study in EHL. I sincerely wish you all the best in your future endeavors! :)

P.S. Hope to see you in Shanghai to have Xiao Long Bao together. ;)


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My First Trip of 2012 to London.. Part II

London, United Kingdom

I am going to rave about this Chinese restaurant that we visited on our second day in London. I really appreciate it when I can have authentic Asian food in European countries.  I do not believe in the combination of eastern and western way of cooking because most of the time, they serve you crappy food that taste really weird.

Roast Duck

Roast Meat

Steamed Eggs

I love to have my table full of food! :)

I am really touched to have such great and delicious Chinese cuisine and even more so to have my food served pipping hot in this chilling weather.

Here is the restaurant’s details:

Gold Mine Restaurant
02 Queensway
London
W2 3RR.

You can alight at Bayswater Station and is within walking distance to the restaurant from the station. The total bill comes up to about 84 pounds for the 7 of us which is only 12 pounds per person. An affordable and very satisfactory meal! Two thumbs up! :)

After our lunch, a few of us went to visit the Sherlock Holmes Museum.

Sherlock Holmes and Doctor Watson lived at 221b Baker Street and here we are in the house at the real address. You can alight at Baker Street station and it is approximately 5 minutes walk to the museum. Admission is 6 pounds per person.

If you’re wondering if Sherlock Holmes was a real person, he was a fictional detective created by the author Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. I will wish that Sherlock Holmes was a real person cos he was a brilliant genius in the story!

Here are the photos of the interior of the house..

Detective Sherlock Holmes's toolbox?

The room of Sherlock Holmes

Detective Irene in deep thoughts

Detective Irene investigating the crime scenes

Detective Irene is happy because she solved the case

The souvenir store was right beside the museum and here are some of the photos that I took.

And as we walked out of the museum, we saw the London Bus with the advertisement on the movie Sherlock Holmes! Wow! How coincidental!

The movie advertisement poster is also found in the tube station!

Have you catch the second installment of Sherlock Holmes yet? I hope I could catch it soon. :)


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My First Trip of 2012 to London.. Part I

London, United Kingdom

My First Trip of 2012 to London..

Oh… London… London… Lovely London…

This is my second time to London and I really love this city. Firstly, it is very easy to explore this city with the extensive underground tube network. Secondly, there are so many great places to visit that make you fall in love with London again and again.

Buckingham Palace

If you can remember the footage from the Royal Wedding, this is the very place where Prince William and Kate kissed twice on the balcony of Buckingham Palace. So sweet…

Windsor Castle

Next, we went to Windsor Castle. It was an impromptu visit to Windsor Castle as we happened to walk past a poster about Windsor Castle outside the Buckingham Palace. It was raining heavily so we decided to visit Windsor Castle instead of sticking on to our planned route and get drenched.

Windsor Castle is the largest and oldest occupied castle in the world and is one of the official residences of the Queen. I wish I could show you the interior of the Castle and not only the exterior but photography is not permitted. I have never been a artsy-fartsy person but I gape in awe at the Royal Collection that was displayed.

St George's Chapel

St George’s Chapel is a place of worship at Windsor Castle and the resting places of many Kings and Queens. It is one of the finest examples of gothic architecture in the United Kingdom. The interior of the building is really magnificent and beautiful but I can’t show you any pictures because photography is also not permitted in this area.

My great companion for the trip :)

The Guard and Me

Close up view of the Guard

Gosh.. The guard is so freaking young! He is just a young and handsome little boy. Can you believe that this little boy is standing there and not moving for the whole day? I think I am even older than him. Maybe this is his holiday part-time job? Lol!

London Eye

We went back to our originally planned route to see the London Eye and other attractions around the area.

Beautiful lights up! I took the London Eye on my first trip here and it was really breathtaking. An amazing feat for someone like me who is so scared of heights! I have not tried taking Singapore’s Flyer though.

Big Ben

Westminster Abbey

And…This was how we spent our Day 1 in London and stay tuned folks for Part II. :)

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