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Seoul’s list of Michelin Restaurants

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16

 

[SEOUL, KOREA] General impressions of food in Seoul may have been restricted to street food, and the likes of barbecue, Korean fried chicken, ginseng chicken and bibimbap.

With the Michelin Guide reaching Seoul, the dining scene may be shaken a little, with travellers knowing more options from the fine dining arena. (Also Read: Singapore Michelin Bib Gourmand Guide 2016 – 34 Eateries That Make The Cut)

 

24 restaurants in Seoul are awarded stars in the inaugural guide, with Gaon in Gangam and La Yeon at The Shilla Hotel. (Read: Review of La Yeon)

May be comforting to know that instead of a European restaurant (or more precisely a French restaurant), 2 Korean restaurants have taken the top honours.

Gaon operated by Korean ceramics group GwangJuYo is a traditional Korean restaurant serving high-end, elegant cuisine, while La Yeon takes a contemporary approach to Korean cuisine.

 

 

3 Michelin stars: Exceptional cuisine, worth a special journey
Gaon (Korean)
La Yeon (Korean)

2 Michelin stars: Excellent cooking, worth a detour
Gotgan (Korean)
Kwon Sook Soo (Korean)
Pierre Gagnaire (French Contemporary)

 

1 Michelin star: A very good restaurant in its category
Alla Prima (Innovative)
Balwoo Gongyang (Temple Cuisine)
Bicena (Korean)
Bo Reum Soei (Barbecue)
Dining in Space (French Contemporary)
Hamo (Korean)
Jin Jin (Chnese)
Jungsik (Korean Contemporary)
Kojima (Sushi)
Kuenkiwajip (Gejang)
L’Amitié (French)
Mingles (Korean Contemporary)
Poom (Korean)
Ristorante Eo (Italian Contemporary)
Soigné (Innovative)
Twenty Four Seasons (Korean Contemporary)
Votre Maison (French Contemporary)
Yu Yuan (Chinese)
Zero Complex (Innovative)

 

Other Related Entries
La Yeon (Seoul)
Jungsik (Seoul)
Singapore Michelin Bib Gourmand Guide 2016 – 34 Eateries That Make The Cut
Tokyo Michelin Guide 2016
Hong Kong Michelin Guide 2016

(Source: danielfooddiary.com)

BY 

 

IN FEATURE – MICHELIN SINGAPORE

 

 

 

16

 

[SEOUL, KOREA] General impressions of food in Seoul may have been restricted to street food, and the likes of barbecue, Korean fried chicken, ginseng chicken and bibimbap.

With the Michelin Guide reaching Seoul, the dining scene may be shaken a little, with travellers knowing more options from the fine dining arena. (Also Read: Singapore Michelin Bib Gourmand Guide 2016 – 34 Eateries That Make The Cut)

 

24 restaurants in Seoul are awarded stars in the inaugural guide, with Gaon in Gangam and La Yeon at The Shilla Hotel. (Read: Review of La Yeon)

May be comforting to know that instead of a European restaurant (or more precisely a French restaurant), 2 Korean restaurants have taken the top honours.

Gaon operated by Korean ceramics group GwangJuYo is a traditional Korean restaurant serving high-end, elegant cuisine, while La Yeon takes a contemporary approach to Korean cuisine.

 

 

3 Michelin stars: Exceptional cuisine, worth a special journey
Gaon (Korean)
La Yeon (Korean)

2 Michelin stars: Excellent cooking, worth a detour
Gotgan (Korean)
Kwon Sook Soo (Korean)
Pierre Gagnaire (French Contemporary)

 

1 Michelin star: A very good restaurant in its category
Alla Prima (Innovative)
Balwoo Gongyang (Temple Cuisine)
Bicena (Korean)
Bo Reum Soei (Barbecue)
Dining in Space (French Contemporary)
Hamo (Korean)
Jin Jin (Chnese)
Jungsik (Korean Contemporary)
Kojima (Sushi)
Kuenkiwajip (Gejang)
L’Amitié (French)
Mingles (Korean Contemporary)
Poom (Korean)
Ristorante Eo (Italian Contemporary)
Soigné (Innovative)
Twenty Four Seasons (Korean Contemporary)
Votre Maison (French Contemporary)
Yu Yuan (Chinese)
Zero Complex (Innovative)

 

Other Related Entries
La Yeon (Seoul)
Jungsik (Seoul)
Singapore Michelin Bib Gourmand Guide 2016 – 34 Eateries That Make The Cut
Tokyo Michelin Guide 2016
Hong Kong Michelin Guide 2016

 

 

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More Info: danielfooddiary.com

 


Seoulcialite Stay: Twin Towers View Room Traders Hotel Kuala Lumpur

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Room Review Deluxe Petronas Twin Tower View Room at Traders Hotel Kuala Lumpur Malaysia Toronto Seoulcialite

Room Review Deluxe Petronas Twin Tower View Room at Traders Hotel Kuala Lumpur Malaysia Toronto Seoulcialite

A Seoulcialite Stay at Traders Hotel, Kuala Lumpur

I booked a flight to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia in the middle of the night during a particularly strange bout of insomnia.  Not knowing the city, I wanted to be in a central location close to all the amenities.  When in a new city, I usually prefer to walk everywhere I can.  Kuala Lumpur is not exactly a pedestrian-friendly locale.  I was so relieved to stay at a luxury hotel in the heart of the city: Traders Hotel, Kuala Lumpur!

Room Review Deluxe Petronas Twin Tower View Room at Traders Hotel Kuala Lumpur Malaysia Toronto Seoulcialite Room Review Deluxe Petronas Twin Tower View Room at Traders Hotel Kuala Lumpur Malaysia Toronto Seoulcialite

The Petronas Towers View @ Traders Hotel

When I arrived in Kuala Lumpur it was around 10 PM, but I didn’t arrive at Traders until about midnight.  Once I got through the horrendous line at Malaysian customs/ immigration, I took a GrabCar as I was told it’s cheaper than Uber.  My driver was chatty.  I usually dislike too much talking in a taxi, but the driver was local and knowledgeable.  When we approached Traders Hotel, I got a view of the Petronas Towers, KL Tower, and the city skyline lit up at night.  The Petronas Twin Towers were the tallest buildings in the world from 1998 to 2004.  They are still the tallest twin towers in the world.  My shots from the car were horrible.  With the rain, my night shots from the hotel room weren’t fantastic either (see above).  In the morning it was spitting, too.  The towers and surrounding gardens were pretty epic from our Traders Hotel Deluxe Twin Tower View Room.  On the 29th floor, we had access to executive amenities as well.

About Traders Club

Traders Club guest rooms are equipped with:

  • Free Wi-Fi and wired data port / broadband Internet access
  • Built-in international adaptors
  • Extra power points
  • Glass-topped desk with stationery
  • Chair with castors for easier movement

Traders Club Lounge offers:

  • Check-in and check-out on the club floor
  • Wi-Fi Internet access (Free)
  • Breakfast, afternoon tea and evening cocktails at the Traders Club Lounge* (Free)
  • Beverages throughout the day at the Traders Club Lounge (Free)
  • Fresh fruits available on a daily basis
  • Local newspapers available upon request
  • Free suit pressing and shoeshine service
  • Free 2-hour use of a meeting room
  • Concierge service

*Traders Club Lounge’s Evening Cocktail Hours are from 5pm to 7pm. Please dress appropriately (no bathrobes, house slippers or swimwear allowed).

Room Review Deluxe Petronas Twin Tower View Room at Traders Hotel Kuala Lumpur Malaysia Toronto Seoulcialite Room Review Deluxe Petronas Twin Tower View Room at Traders Hotel Kuala Lumpur Malaysia Toronto Seoulcialite Room Review Deluxe Petronas Twin Tower View Room at Traders Hotel Kuala Lumpur Malaysia Toronto Seoulcialite Room Review Deluxe Petronas Twin Tower View Room at Traders Hotel Kuala Lumpur Malaysia Toronto Seoulcialite

Traders Hotel: First Impressions

Check in on the 5th floor was a breeze.  My friend had already checked in and put down the deposit clearance on the room.  I was assigned an additional 2 keys then was off to the races.  The elevators at the hotel are plentiful, but a bit on the slow side.  We found ourselves taking the “milk run” floor to floor frequently.  The room itself was smaller than I had imagined, especially being that I was paying a media rate rather than enjoying a room in kind for an honest review.  The beds were quite small.  They were also on the firm side, which didn’t initially please me.  The bed actually helped my back after having lugged 2 carry-ons from Seoul to Kuala Lumpur.  I was a big fan of the huge pillows, but felt the linens could be softer and a comforter more plush.  We were welcomed with fresh fruit and adorable cupcakes.  The cupcakes had real, thick, chocolate ganache on a vanilla cupcake I could have done without (it was quite dry).  There was a box of chocolates awaiting our arrival, and we gobbled up those delicious sweet treats in a hurry!

Room Review Deluxe Petronas Twin Tower View Room at Traders Hotel Kuala Lumpur Malaysia Toronto Seoulcialite Room Review Deluxe Petronas Twin Tower View Room at Traders Hotel Kuala Lumpur Malaysia Toronto Seoulcialite Room Review Deluxe Petronas Twin Tower View Room at Traders Hotel Kuala Lumpur Malaysia Toronto Seoulcialite Room Review Deluxe Petronas Twin Tower View Room at Traders Hotel Kuala Lumpur Malaysia Toronto Seoulcialite

Luxurious Bathroom in our Traders Hotel Room

The bathroom was the star of our room at the Traders Hotel.  While the view of the Petronas Towers from bed was great, the rain shower was even better.  There was plenty of room for 2 gals’ cosmetics, etc.  Toothbrushes, Colgate toothpaste, a razor and shaving cream, an emery board, epsom salts (for that lovely soaker tub), q-tips, shampoo, conditioner, and body lotion were all ready for us.  I hate bringing a oothbrush and toothpaste from home (it always seems to explode!) so having everything already there was quite handy!

Room Review Deluxe Petronas Twin Tower View Room at Traders Hotel Kuala Lumpur Malaysia Toronto Seoulcialite Room Service Menu Room Review Deluxe Petronas Twin Tower View Room at Traders Hotel Kuala Lumpur Malaysia Toronto Seoulcialite Room Service Menu

Traders Hotel in-room Eats

The room service menu at Traders Hotel is actually pretty reasonably-priced…for food.  The price for alcoholic beverages is kind of out of this world considering how cheap it is to buy from a restaurant or corner store.  In fact, on Monday night when we went out in Jalon Alor it was ladies night.  We didn’t pay for a drink the entire night!  Make sure to check out the night market, food street, bars, and clubs in that area as we met some great people and danced til the whee hours.  If you can make it back to the room before midnight, you’ll be able to order room service.  Otherwise, make sure to pick somethingup from one of the many night market stalls offering Chinese, Middle Eastern (Arabic), and Malaysian fare.

Room Review Deluxe Petronas Twin Tower View Room at Traders Hotel Kuala Lumpur Malaysia Toronto Seoulcialite

I always jump for joy when I get to review a hotel in a new locale.  Traders Hotel did not sponsor my trip, but the room was provided at a discounted media rate.  While this article has been written in partnership, all reviews are honest and opinions are my own.

The post Seoulcialite Stay: Twin Towers View Room Traders Hotel Kuala Lumpur appeared first on The Toronto Seoulcialite.


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Asking Koreans Why People Learn Korean | 외국인들이 한국어를 배우는 이유

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So many more people are learning Korean these days than ten years ago. When I first started learning Korean, it wasn't popular at all, and I had no other friends who were interested in it. But just a few years later, I started seeing Korean courses pop up online, new books appear in stores, and study groups focusing on learning Korean at my local college.

Why did Korean suddenly become a lot more popular then, around ten years ago (give or take a few years)? Was it due to Kpop? Is it because of the delicious Korean food, or the culture? I had some of my own ideas, but I wanted to find out what Koreans themselves thought was the reason so many people are learning their language.

This summer I flew to Korea to ask Koreans directly what they thought about this. Here's what they said~

The post Asking Koreans Why People Learn Korean | 외국인들이 한국어를 배우는 이유 appeared first on Learn Korean with GO! Billy Korean.


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6 Fantastic Tips for Dating a Korean Girl

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Have you set your sights on a lovely Korean lady? You’re not alone — Korean women are absolutely sought after, and for good reason! While obviously everyone is different, it’s safe to say that there are plenty of beautiful, intelligent, interesting Korean women around the world, so more than likely you’ll fall pretty hard for a Korean woman at some point in your life.

There’s even a dating phenomenon called “Korean Fever” — supposedly, once you date a Korean woman, you’ll never want to go back to dating women from any other country. You’ll have to see for yourself if there’s truth to that!

If you’re planning on dating a Korean girl, there are some general dating practices and tips you should be aware of beforehand. While every girl is different, in general many Korean girls have similar expectations when dating and will utilize similar dating rituals and techniques. Familiarize yourself with these expectations, and you’ll be that far ahead of the game! No one likes to be turned down, so you may as well make it as likely as possible that you’ll succeed if you’re planning on approaching a Korean girl.

Read on for our best tips and techniques for making your dreams of dating your Korean crush a reality!

*Ready to learn Korean yet? Click here to learn about our 90 Day Korean learning program!

If you’re a foreigner, you’re an instant playboy

dating a Korean girl

If you’re visiting Korea from another country on vacation or as a new resident of Korea, beware that you will instantly have some dating misconceptions assigned to you whether you like it or not.

In Korean dating culture, the assumption of visitors from other countries (especially young white men) is that you’re a player or a womanizer. It doesn’t matter if this couldn’t be further from the truth — it’s an instant association that gets made, so you’re pretty much walking around with the label “CAUTION: playboy” above your head as you make your way through Korea.

Fear not! This is not an instant deal breaker, and if you ask out a Korean woman that you have chemistry with, there’s a very good chance she’ll accept your invitation and go out with you. That being said, if you begin dating each other, she’ll also treat you as guilty until proven otherwise.

It’s more than likely that she’ll want to look through your texts and chat history, and she’ll probably comb through your social media to see if there is even a tiny bit of evidence that suggests that you’re a womanizer. If there is, you’re done. If there isn’t, she’ll slowly but surely begin to trust your intentions and your interest in her (and only her).

If your new girlfriend wants to go through your phone, don’t deny her request based on principle. It’s not that she doesn’t trust you, it’s that Korean culture is telling her you’re probably talking to other girls. If it makes her feel more comfortable, you should consider it.

They’re worried about you thinking they’re ‘easy’

dating a Korean girl

In Korean dating culture, something that women worry about is being perceived as an easy target by foreign men. If you’ve recently started dating a Korean woman, there’s a good chance that she’s apprehensive about whether or not you consider her ‘easy.’

To help reassure your new lady that you don’t see her that way, make sure you treat her with respect and that you respect her boundaries. She’ll probably want to take the beginning stages of your relationship slowly until she’s sure that you’re committed to her and not just looking for a quick fling.

Slow down, treat her right, and you’ll have no problem!

Be prepared to pull out your wallet

dating a Korean girl

Ah, the age old question — who should pay at the end of the date? Everyone has an opinion one way or another, and Korean women are no different in that regard.

For decades, the norm has been that the man pays for not only the first date, but also the vast majority of dates that couple goes on. Splitting the bill was extremely uncommon, and the woman on the date was not expected to pay for any portion of the date — not even after dinner drinks or dessert.

While this has been considered normal and still is by many, Korean dating culture has begun to shift to a new, more modern paradigm. The man is still expected to pay for dinner, but if she’d like to, the woman on the date might pay for after dinner soju or ice cream. The couple would then take turns paying for each stop of the evening — so, for example, if the man paid for dinner, the woman would then pay for soju, then the man could pay for ice cream, etc.

The moral of the story is assume that you’ll need to pay, but don’t keep your new girlfriend or date from paying if she’s like to pick up the tab for dessert or coffee. If that happens, then you’d pick up the next check. If she doesn’t offer, assume that if you’d like to continue this relationship you’ll need to pay for everything the two of you do socially.

As far as gifts go, most Korean women will be receptive to you conveying your affections with lavish gifts and tokens of your love (and honestly, most Korean girls will expect it). Be prepared to spend big on birthday gifts, and be prepared to also purchase gifts for each of the love-centric Korean holidays. There’s one every month on the 11th (yes, seriously), so these don’t have to be as large as a birthday or anniversary gift.

Korean women are good at dating

dating a Korean girl

If you’re crushing on a Korean cutie, you’ve already proven this next point for us — Korean girls are good at dating. While anyone can go on dates, dating itself can also be a sport if you’re good at it, and Korean women are champions. So be prepared to compete!

When a Korean girl becomes your girlfriend, of course she’ll demonstrate loyalty and commit to you. But until that happens, be prepared to be at her mercy. She’ll likely know how to turn on the charm and somehow be cute, mysterious, and seductive all at once — you’ll be wrapped around her finger before you know it.

Before you consider approaching a Korean girl, be warned! If she sets her sights on you, you’re going nowhere. Enjoy it — they call it ‘Korean Fever’ for a reason, and you’ll catch that fever soon enough.

You’re competing through social media

dating a Korean girl

When you’re dating a Korean girl, you’re competing with everyone constantly, whether you like it or not. How is that even possible, you ask? You can thank social media.

Social media is huge all over the world, but in Korea it’s larger than life. When you take your Korean girlfriend to a fancy dinner or buy her a lavish gift, she will photograph it and post it to every social media platform and instant messaging platform that she uses so that her friends can see it instantly. Get used to being on a chat app to keep her attention!

While social media can be great because it lets you keep in touch with friends from afar and stay connected to your social circle, it can also cause a lot of pressure and anxiety for both the girl and the guy in the relationships. If you’re sharing everything with everybody, it means that you’re comparing yourself to everybody.

As a result, your girlfriend will likely feel the need to measure up to what her friends are displaying from their lives — if someone else is on a nice vacation, you’ll probably want to start planning one as well. Similarly, you’ll feel the need to blow your girlfriend away with the gifts and dates you plan so you give her something to really be excited about.

While it sounds exhausting, this also means a lot of fun! You’ll be enjoying beautiful restaurants and making your new girlfriend happy with beautiful gifts. You also always have the ability to remind your girlfriend that social media only highlights the absolute best from her friends’ lives — they’re not posting about arguments they’re having or bad days, they’re only posting the highlights. (That doesn’t mean she’s guaranteed to listen to that logic, though!)

Korean girls are educated, and expect you to be, too

dating a Korean girl

If you’re currently dating a Korean girl, one of the things that probably attracted you to her initially was her intelligence and her quick wit. Three quarters of the adult women in Korea have a university education, so you’ll definitely be having high-minded conversations with your lady.

This also means you need to make sure your Korean language skills are sharp so you can keep up and so you don’t bore her conversationally! Nobody wants a boring date (or a boring boyfriend).

If your Korean language skills aren’t where they should be and you want to brush up on them quickly, check out our 90 Minute Challenge and learn the Korean alphabet in just an hour and a half! It’s a small investment to make for all the return you’ll get — the ability to ask out the Korean girl you have your eye on. Good luck!

Photo credit: http://www.bigstock.com


Learn to read Korean and be having simple conversations, taking taxis and ordering in Korean within a week with our FREE Hangeul Hacks series: http://www.90DayKorean.com/learn

Korean lessons   *  Korean Phrases    *    Korean Vocabulary *   Learn Korean   *    Learn Korean alphabet   *   Learn Korean fast   *  Motivation    *   Study Korean  

 


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Basic Workflows for Luminar

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Since my last post about Luminar, I have altered how I process a lot of my images. The reason being that Luminar has for the most part provided such a creative solution to making photos pop in every way possible. However, if you are new to photography and editing, Luminar may seem a little complicated. Trust me, it gets easier with practice. However, to get you going I have chosen two very simple workflows for you that can help you get your photos looking amazing!

Start with a Preset

If you absolutely have no idea what you want from your image then I would suggest starting with a preset and see where that takes you. The reason that I say that is because at times, we just don’t know the capabilities of our image and the presets not only give a starting point but the set up the workspace as well. From here you can tweak the settings, as many times the initial preset effects may not be the desired result. Often adjusting and deleting some of the filters will be all that is required.

You can pick up  a number of filters online from people like Jim Nix and whatnot. I find that if you are looking for just a simple solution or some quick edits then presets (just like in lightroom) are the way to go. However the drawback is that many (if not all), do not exactly match the look that you are trying to achieve. This is why I suggest using them as a starting point to get your image most of the way there and then tweaking after.

If you are looking for more presets click on the “+more” button on the bottom of the preset panel inside of Luminar or head there directly with this link.

If you are looking for some really good presets then check out Jim Nix’s preset packs. I have just picked up his cityscapes pack for $10 and it is great! You can check out all of his presets here.

Start with a Workspace

If you have an idea of where to start then you can choose a workspace that best suits you. I typically go with “landscape” because I feel that it gives a good assortment of overall filters that I use on a regular basis. From there it is just a matter of working your way down the screen and adjusting as you go. If you reach the bottom and you feel that you need another filter, then just click that “add filter” button and choose the filter that you need from the drop down menu.

This workflow is best use when you have an idea of a particular look or you are wanting to apply some basic edits outside of lightroom. Typically, all I need for most landscapes is the “landscape” workspace, but sometimes I like to add in a few favourite filters like HSL and Golden Hour. If you find yourself using the same few filters over and over again, I would highly suggest making your own custom workspace.

 


The bottomline here is that Luminar may seem a little complicated when you start out but as you learn the program it gets a lot easier to use. These two basic workflows will not only get you comfortable with using the program but will get your images looking amazing as well.

Click here! if you want your own copy of Luminar

The post Basic Workflows for Luminar appeared first on The Sajin.


LTW: The Barking War

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Good morning,

A series of bellicose rhetoric exchange between North Korea and Donald Trump keeps raising tension in Korean Peninsula. North Korean Foreign Minister threw the first punch on Aug 7, declaring his country will “teach the U.S. a severe lesson with its nuclear strategic force.” Trump countered on Aug 8, saying “North Korea best not make any more threats to the U.S. They will be met with fire and fury the world has never seen.” The commander of North Korean Army responded on Aug 10, threatening they can fire four Hwasung-12 ICBMs over Japan to lfall 30km (19 miles) away from Guam with the final order from Kim Jung-un. Donald Trump then tweeted on Aug 11 that U.S. military plans are “locked and loaded” and ready to go “should North Korea act unwisely.” Gen.Joseph Dunford, the chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff met with President Moon Jae-in Seoul on Aug 14.

 Guam:North Korea에 대한 이미지 검색결과Guam:North Korea에 대한 이미지 검색결과fire and fury에 대한 이미지 검색결과


While the rest of the world is watching Korean Peninsula in worries, South Koreans are not really feeling the tension. South Koreans have lived under Kim family’s verbal threats since Korean War ended in 1953. If South Koreans cannot sleep because of Kim Jung-un’s recent bad words from his mouth, neither can Japanese because of earthquakes. My wife can be more concerned about possible Louis Vuitton store pullout from Lotte Department Store than possible North Korean ICBMs flying over Japan to Guam. The recent exchange of menacing words between Kim Jung-un and Donald Trump fits below scenes to many South Koreans.

Regards,
H.S.



Escape: Top Reasons Why Bali’s the Perfect Getaway to RELAX!

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Bali, Water Palace, Holiday, Places Of Interest, Dragon

Bali: Your Relaxation Destination!

Guest Post by: Wander with Jo!

The mere mention of the word Bali, is bound to instantly conjure up visions of an island paradise, surrounded by party beaches and resorts, big and small. The real Bali, however, is much more than just a happening destination, it is an aspiration about the mood and essence of the Balinese that sets this tropical retreat apart from the other usual tourist hot spots.

Smile, Work, Happy, Holiday, Sweet, Bali

The generous, smiling and lovely people of Bali, along with the rich diverse culture and amazing sights, really take Bali to another level. At the end of the day, a vacation to Bali is sheer fun, no matter who you are or which part of the world you are from.

Morning Glow, Sawarna Coast, Java, Indonesia

For the tourist who is looking for relaxation and wants to get away from the chaos of Kuta or the pleasures of Seminyak, there are many lavish resorts and wellness retreats on the Bukit Peninsula. These excellent villas and hotels have one thing in common, that they allow the guest to relax and unwind in some of Asia’s best environment. With the world becoming an increasing stressful place, day by day, a demand for such retreats is on the rise.

Seminyak, Bali, Indonesia, Holiday, Leisure, Night

Bali has a great reputation for making the art of wellness combine equally well with the special luxury spas that adopt the most unique and beneficial natural therapies. This growth in popularity can be gauged by the increasing number of airlines, from all over the world, offering direct connections to Bali. Over the years this Island of the Gods has managed to master the exotic art of healing and relaxation using traditional Asian techniques.

Golf Club, The Village, Agriculture, Canyons

As more and more travelers head to the health and wellness retreats of Bali, to find a balance in their busy lives, the local travel industry has geared itself for this phenomenal rise in medical and cosmetic tourism. Resorts such as the Chill House, in Canggu, provide delicious organic food, surfing, biking, yoga and other soul and body treatments. For those with a penchant to spend good money, some of the most well equipped and luxurious hotels can be found in Bali. Apart from excellent hospitality, guests can relax in lush gardens, have access to multiple swimming pools and spend quality time with families on private beach fronts.

Bali, Tropics, Tropical, Palm Trees, Forest, Sky

Bali has plenty of cliff-side resorts, which offer stunning views, seemingly perched on an edge. In case you intend to enjoy the cuisine in the privacy of your room, a personal butler will be on hand to prepare a fresh meal whenever you please. Then there are private villas available, each with a private plunge pool and dedicated butler service for the entire duration of your stay. Some high end hotels in Ubud have top- notch yoga experts and fitness classes which incorporate cycling through paddy fields or trekking up to volcano peaks. Stunning overflowing infinity pools are everywhere as are gushing waterfalls and cascading rivers. Another ideal way to embrace the expanding health trend is by going on nature walks in the scenic rice fields and tropical ravines of Ubud. There is no better way to stay fit and at the same time get up close to the culture, folklore and herbal medicine as you are introduced to trees with therapeutic properties.

Monkey, Animal, Love, Baby, Wildlife, Mammal, Nature

There are exclusive super deluxe spa villas located within dense jungles from where you can enjoy a spa treatment in the privacy of your room which overlooks the lush green forest. A tropical garden and an enchanting waterfall, makes for a magical place to relax and meditate.  The ultimate in luxury are the retreats which cater to a very limited number of people in order to provide top class service. These spacious  Balinese huts, come with a 25m pool, hanging vines to create a jungle like environment.

Sunrise, Girl, Bali, Sun

Women have expressed their eagerness to visit Bali for wellness and yoga because of the number of high class retreats which cater to only women. The seven day packages offered here include exclusive spa treatments, yoga classes, health programs and outdoor activities like snorkeling, Indonesian cooking classes,rafting and market tours among others. For those who can stand up, adrenaline pumping surfing sessions are included.

Bali, Indonesia, Culture, Aroma, Religion, Hindu

The special treatments include Ayurveda, reflexology, stone massage and acupuncture. Dietitians and doctors are on hand to offer constant advice. Heated hydrotherapy pools are in place for relaxing the sore body parts. The main reason why people flock to Bali is that they can have the best of both worlds in one destination – party and relaxation. There are so many wellness resorts, that one can easily slip away from the island’s party scene and revive the body doing yoga, meditation or simply communing with nature.

Buddhist, Temple, Buddhism, Religion, Worship, Buddha

Bali is the most popular destination with travelers from all corners of the planet. Beautiful beaches, warm climate all make an ideal backdrop for that perfect spa holiday. This is the only place where you can incorporate the Balinese way of life and their philosophies by detoxing the mind in these beautiful surroundings.   

Surfer, Wave, Sunset, The Indian Ocean

With just 900 odd inhabited islands, out of a total of over 17,000, Bali and Indonesia can claim to be the number one destination for holiday and relaxation.  Think infinity pools, yoga retreats, luxury villas with pools, beach yoga, surfing, meditating to sound of the waves and all these things can give you instant feeling of rejuvenation. You can easily say Bali is the ultimate place to unwind.  

The post Escape: Top Reasons Why Bali’s the Perfect Getaway to RELAX! appeared first on The Toronto Seoulcialite.


No, North Korea’s Nuclear Missiles are Not an ‘Existential’ Threat to the US

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This is a re-post of an article I just wrote for The National Interest. It is a response to the increasing hawk threat inflation – presumably to justify possible airstrikes –  that even one North Korean nuclear weapon is intolerable, or that even one North Korean nuclear strike on America would bring down the country, or that the NK nuclear program is an ‘existential’ threat to the US.

None of that is true. Is it bad that NK has nukes and missiles? Of course. Would it be a humanitarian catastrophe if NK nuked one or several American cities? Obviously. Would that bring down the American state, the US Constitution, and the American way of life? No, it would not. Is it creepy and strangelovian to talk like this? Yes. But NK nukes are here to stay; we need to adapt to this reality. We need to start thinking soberly about these sorts of frightening questions, especially if we are contemplating the use of force against North Korea, with its huge attendant risks.

The below essay argues that the US has some resilience against even the disasters which would follow a North Korean nuclear attack on the homeland. Many people would die but that is not the same is bringing down the whole country. Killing people is not the same as breaking the state, and way too many hawkish threat-inflators, like President Trump or John Bolton, are eliding this point. In the four US strategic bombing campaigns of the 20th century – against Nazi Germany, Imperial Japan, North Korea, and North Vietnam – none of them lead to governmental breakdown and domestic anarchy. We are not on the cusp of Lord of the Flies or Mad Max, and we should be honest about that, even as we try to contain the NK nuclear program. To do otherwise just scares the hell out of the country even more than it is now. Even in the worst case scenario, which this essay presents, NK almost certainly does not have the ability to destroy America, even if it can kill many Americans. That is a distinction, however macabre it may seem to point it out.

The full essay follows the jump:

 

 

Late last month, the American Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats called North Korea’s nuclear weapons program a “potential existential threat to the United States.” Coats hedges a bit by throwing in the modifier “potentially,” but he has spoken this way before. Unless he has spectacular secret information, this is woefully inaccurate. North Korea is a growing threat to the United States with its nuclear missile program, and it is indeed an existential threat to South Korea and Japan. But its threat to the US is actually not existential – as, for example, Russian and Chinese arsenals are – and is unlikely to become so.

Language is important here. North Korea is a indeed a threat to the US, but it is a greater threat to US regional allies, and its proven ability to strike the US with a nuclear warhead is still hotly disputed. Ranging the US with a missile is not the same as hitting the US with a reentry-survivable nuclear warhead that could evade US missile defense. Nor, even, does one or two or a dozen North Korean nuclear strikes on the US mainland constitute an “existential” threat.

Such a scenario would, of course, be terrible, but for North Korea to actually threaten the existence of the United States would take dozens of nuclear strikes across almost all of America’s major cities. The humanitarian costs of even one nuclear detonation would be enormous, of course, and the national psychological shock would be akin to nothing in US history, bar perhaps the Civil War. But this is not the same thing as actually hitting the United States hard enough that its society begins to fragment and its government collapse. DNI Coats does not use those terms, but presumably that is what an “existential” threat is. Large numbers of civilian casualties, even in the millions, and the loss of several American cities is not existential. Horrible, yes. A dramatic reorientation of American life, absolutely. But not the end of America.

In fact, the United States is actually well postured to survive – or ‘ride out,’ in nuclear war parlance – a nuclear strike. The US is a large country, with a widely dispersed population. According to the Census Bureau in 2015, it has only ten cities whose populations exceed one million people. And twenty percent of its population lives in rural areas, distant from any realistic North Korean target. That is sixty million people. Residents of large cities like New York and Los Angeles are threatened, but much of the US population is not. It is important to be honest about this.

American governmental federalism is another benefit. Even if Washington, D.C. and other large US metropolitan centers were devastated, the US has multiple levels of government which would continue to operate. States, counties, and cities would continue to function, uphold law and order, and provide points from which to rebuild damaged national structures. By way of example, the collapse of government in New Orleans due to Hurricane Katrina in 2005 did not lead to cascading collapse across Louisiana or the Gulf Coast. Even Imperial Japan in 1945, after months of punishing US bombing, managed to ride out the nuclear detonations in Hiroshima and Nagasaki without a national breakdown.

Nuclear strikes in America will not necessarily lead to apocalyptic outcomes, and we should be cautious about using Coats’ frightening language. Highly centralized states are at greater risk than America. Where one national capital represents the national center gravity – as with Seoul in South Korea, or Paris in France – the risk of a nuclear ‘decapitation strike’ to throw the country into chaos is real. Hence North Korea’s greater threat to highly centralized, and more proximate, Japan and South Korea. But America’s thick decentralization makes it more resilient.

Finally, long-term US political stability suggests socio-political resilience. Assuming again that North Korea strikes Washington and America’s other large cities, it is not obvious that the US would then fall into some manner of political anarchy or revolution. The US is a wealthy, stable state with the world’s longest running constitution (230 years). Its population has never had any meaningful political traditions besides liberal democracy. There are no serious revolutionaries waiting for social chaos to strike, like in czarist Russia or Weimar Germany.

Indeed, Coats himself likely knows all this, which is why he appended “potentially” to his comments. By calling the North Korean nuclear missile threat “existential,” he is probably trying to capture and focus attention, both in the US and, especially, China. But adding “potentially” allows him to pull back so that he does not appear too alarmist and incur the jeering of the analyst community over something that is really not true. This political and somewhat contradictory phrasing leaves Coats’ actual beliefs rather unclear.

His exaggeration is understandable, however, due to China. In fact, I imagine much of the overheated rhetoric coming from the Trump administration about North Korea is intended to pressure China to finally do something on the issue, rather than accurately portray the threat from Pyongyang. But this is risky threat-inflation. Scare-mongering contributes to the growing drumbeat for airstrikes against North Korea which could ignite a disastrous regional conflict, even though North Korea almost certainly does not intend to offensively strike the United States with its nuclear weapons.


Filed under: Korea (North), Nuclear Weapons, Strategy, The National Interest, United States


Robert E Kelly
Assistant Professor
Department of Political Science & Diplomacy
Pusan National University

@Robert_E_Kelly

 

 


When You Only Say 안녕하세요 and Get Complimented (feat. Andy)

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Have you ever been complimented for speaking Korean? It sure feels good.... Or does it? How about when you receive a compliment at the very beginning of a conversation? What if you only say 안녕하세요 and receive a compliment saying that you sound just like a Korean? Does it feel genuine or fake? How do you reply when a Korean compliments you?

I met up with my friend Andy who lives in Korea, and we talked about this kind of situation and what we'd do.

Check it out~

The post When You Only Say 안녕하세요 and Get Complimented (feat. Andy) appeared first on Learn Korean with GO! Billy Korean.


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