HONG KONG, CHINA – PLAYING WITH SPACE (HOTEL REVIEW)

When it comes to capsule hotels, you belong either to the can or can’t group. Luckily for me, I’m with the former, feeling more cosy than claustrophobic when it comes to small spaces. Coming across L’etoile de Mer was a big relief for me, given how expensive accommodation in Hong Kong can get. And flying…

IRAN – WHERE I STAYED (HOTEL REVIEWS)

The sanctions may have been lifted, but businesses in Iran still struggle when trying to establish themselves online. Unlike the rest of the world, credit card reservations don’t apply in Iran and transactions go old-school, made through emails and confirmed through trust. You’ll quickly find that booking lodgings become a problem. Agoda and Booking.com no longer…

ESFAHAN, IRAN – TINY POOL, BIG ASPIRATIONS (HOTEL REVIEW)

What led up to my booking at Howzak House is a tale unto itself. Having had no luck getting a budget accommodation in Esfahan for my trip, I was in a cafe trawling through the net when a friend who had just returned from Iran popped in. After exchanging greetings, I asked her for tips…

YAZD, IRAN – CURIOUS NAME BUT PURR-FECT STAY (HOTEL REVIEW)

You wouldn’t guess but behind one of Yazd’s old city mud walls is a very modern Jungle Hotel. I’m not sure what the owner was thinking of when naming the place, but when it came to the set-up, he’s got it down pat. A relatively new option, Mr Ghiyamat has fitted Jungle’s rooms with modern…

SHIRAZ, IRAN – FINDING YOUR HEART AT TAHA (HOTEL REVIEW)

Five minutes beyond the popular institution Niayesh, is this little gem of a business. When I went on a hunch to pick this over Niayesh, I was never prepared for how right it would be. Taha House is a traditional Iranian house recalibrated to give Shiraz visitors both private and dorm room options. The century-old…

KUALA LUMPUR, MALAYSIA – CONTAIN YOUR EXCITEMENT (HOTEL REVIEW)

It’s a novel enough concept – having designer rooms carved out from containers to accommodate the quirky traveler. The Container Hotel in Kuala Lumpur pitches “sustainable architecture”. Freight containers and concrete pipes are compartmentalised into living quarters for the weary traveler. A small weary traveler preferably. An unexpectedly early bus arrival (4.30am) led me to…

KUALA LUMPUR, MALAYSIA – COMING FROM BELLO (HOTEL REVIEW)

Boutique hotels have a lot of competition. Just like artisanal and handcrafted,  boutique belongs to the family of overused words that occasionally breaks their promise. Bello & Bella Boutique Hotel is situated in the residential segment of Cheras, Kuala Lumpur. Amidst a colourful mix of businesses, the establishment manages to keep said promise as a curated stay in this…