s&-'les-ch&l, -'lesh-, -'les-tE-&l
1: of, relating to, or suggesting heaven or divinity
2: of or relating to the sky or visible heavens (the sun, moon, and stars are celestial bodies)
3: (a) ETHEREAL, OTHERWORLDLY
(b) OLYMPIAN, SUPREME
4: capitalised (Celestial Empire, old name for China): of or relating to China or the Chinese
It was by sheer luck that two girlfriends and I got invited by the Salon Director /Top Stylist, Kensuke Kai-san, to a free trial of their hair spa and styling. I was initially hesitant but (thankfully) signed up for an appointment with Kai anyway - turned out to be one of my best impromptu decisions ever!
Stepping into Branché on a Saturday afternoon in May 2015, first thing that struck was how serene and peaceful the place was. None of that hair-dryer noise, busy chatters, hustle and bustle you'd find at a typical hair salon. In fact, there wasn't even that mish-mesh of chemical smells, just a pleasant, calming atmosphere. The ambience here is a little formal - bright, posh, spacious - and everyone were so polite and friendly, puts one instantly at ease.
Newly opened in March 2015, Branché offers hair and nail services under one roof, helmed by a team of true-blue Japanese stylists and nailists, each with over 10 years of experience. A successful chain with 20 outlets in Japan, 3-month-old Branché at Capitol Piazza is its first overseas establishment, as Kai explained.
The service here is IMPECCABLE - and so are the stylists' sense of style ;) It's not just about the hair, it's the entire customer experience in play - nothing but made-in-Japan best quality, products and services, and just that extra bit of attention to details too. Subtle but certainly noticeable. I was truly blown away! I received undivided attention from my skilled and very patient stylist, Kai, from the point of arrival, through the 1.5-hrs of pampering hair treatments, delicate care, seriously to-die-for head and shoulder massages, and beyond. Nothing about the customer is insignificant here. I felt truly valued, respected, and pampered like a princess. An experience unlike any I've had before, and one that inevitably won my heart over. Even the selection of drinks offered, and the (very Japanese) way they're presented, left me in awe - just check out that picture below of my delicious Matcha Latte!
The prices here are, of course, not for the faint-hearted. Expect to pay around S$200 for a haircut with scalp analysis, wash and style. But what you pay is what you get. In fact, I believe you're getting way better service and value here than what you'd get at some of the larger salon chains, for the same price. As you can tell, I'm quite a convert now ;)
I've since recommended several colleagues and personal friends, and everyone has only good things to say about Kai and Branché. In my opinion, a treasure cove, and an indulge (even if it's a guilty one) worth splurging on.
ever wondered how and why the "KEEP CALM" posters suddenly began popping up all over the place in recent years, and what's the real story/origin behind its widespread popularity?
now here it is, and a very interesting one too :) the keep calm-o-matic and while at it, you can create your own personalised "KEEP CALM" posters too! enjoy!
the nice thing about having some spare time on hands, and being happily home alone without any interruptions or distractions, is the freedom to do anything, anyway and anyhow you like it, no pressure at all :) i get to decide whether to head out somewhere for a fancy all-day western breakfast at some chic neighbourhood bistro, or pop downstairs in my casuals to buy some local takeaways, or just look into the fridge for inspirations and make myself a simple meal, and then be a little self-indulgent - dress up the plate, put out some nice place mats, add a cup of tea, and just enjoy a respite from the hustles and bustles outside. because we had so much leftover steamed rice from dinners earlier this week, and there's a can of luncheon meat in the kitchen cupboard too *grin*... so fried rice it is for brunch today - easy, simple and so satisfying. yumm yumm.
i'm an avid TV girl, i watch quite a bit of TV on the cable channels, though mostly random. with an irregular schedule, it's difficult to follow a specific tv series through all its episodes, but thankfully for the Starhub hubstation, i get to pre-record selected shows that i love. one such newer series that has gotten me hooked since season 1 is this fun and light-hearted "legally blonde" style drama - Fairly Legal on the Diva Universal channel. starring Sarah Shahi, Michael Trucco, Virginia Williams, Ryan Johnson et al, it's a story about character Kate Reed who quit her profession as a lawyer to become a charming mediator in an over-zealous quest to help anyone she meets. so, i've always been captivated by the funny and impulsive Kate Reed, her never yielding sense of justice, as well as the chemistry, dynamics and conflicts between all the key characters... but now, one more reason that has gotten me more into the show is the budding romance and tension between Kate and her fellow colleague Ben Grogan (a filthy rich douchebag who's actually quite a sweetheart deep down inside) - yea, i know... fairytale, but who doesn't enjoy one every now and then? ;) can't wait for the next episode to show tomorrow evening here, i'm actually rooting for them, they look cute together (and i'm no teenager, mind you). in the meantime, for those of you who follow the show, and also love what i love, this is for you :) ps: love the sweet song in this clip too ("kiss me" by Ed Sheeran)
"In a fire that occurred yesterday in the city of Temuco (Chile) a mother dog saved all her puppies of only ten days old, carrying them from the burning house to a safe place, as the ladder of the firetruck.
The pups are now recovering in a Veterinary Clinic, doing ok, except for one of the pups that has burnings." (source)
such a beautiful and heart-warming story... and a reminder of how a mother's love and courage transcend all kinds, human or not. the wonders of life. such bravery, Amanda! hope all of them are now safe and well.
don't miss these amazing stop-motion videos of the Olympics 2012 events by designer Fabian Moritz... love them all! :) commissioned by The Guardian. "animated reconstructions of the best moments of the global sport event taking place in the UK from 27 july to 12 august 2012."
women's gymnastics final
men's swimming 200 individual medley final
they even included a funny bit about Michael Phelps' 12,000 calorie diet! lol!
yes it's true, and it works! the happycall pressure-pan bakes too, how cool! :) referencing recipes from experienced food bloggers, i made some tweaks and adjustments of my own and pulled this off...
the texture of the cake turned out, as the other bakers had also noticed, dryer and somewhat crumbly compared to regular oven-baked ones, but the fact that happycall can be used for baking opens up new possibilities for fun experiments in the kitchen :) so the above was my first happycall bake - a mango upside-down cake with nuts and chocolate chips - totally random and unorthodox, but go ahead have some fun, do it whichever way you wish ;) some inspiring recipes:
this mashable article says it all.... hehe... all you had wanted to do was to perform a simple Google search, but ended up spending much more time than you had intended, trying to get a better score! LOL. genius. so, what is your hi-score at the Google Olympics Doodle today? ;)
suddenly got into the mood for some smoothie today... so blueberry smoothie it is! just grab a bunch of frozen blueberries, a cup of unsweetened / unflavoured yoghurt, add some honey to taste... blend... and voila! plus it's such a bonus seeing how pretty it looks, isn't it? Just brightens up your entire day :)