Thursday, 29 August 2013

Making the best of available space in Hong Kong

We visited a relative in Hong Kong, who rented a small apartment in a high-rise block in the city centre, close to the waterfront. Space here is a premium and was used very creatively.

On entering the apartment, the double bedroom was on the right. It was two metres (the length of the bed) by two metres (the width of a small double bed plus enough room at the side of the bed to stand get dressed). The bed was a high bunk with a storage area below and there was a narrow wardrobe next to it at the opposite end from the sliding bedroom door.

The lounge/diner/kitchen was not much larger. The built-in benches and table just about accommodated four people. It was situated under the other half of the bed, behind the storage. The rest of the room contained a mini kitchen range and a lounge area filled with a 2-seater sofa.

The bathroom had a small wash basin, a wc-bidet and a full room-width one-metre sit-in bath/shower. The whole apartment would fit into one fairly average sized room in a UK 3-bedroom semi-detached home.

< Example of compact sit-in bath/shower.

In our hotel room, we had twice as much room as our relative had in the apartment so don't panic if you've booked into a known hotel chain - there will be room to swing a cat, although we don't recommend nor condone it!

Wednesday, 7 August 2013

I Do but No Dodo

On behalf of a bride and groom, the manager of the hotel where we were staying in Mauritius, island of the former dodo, invited us to a wedding. Not sure why the couple had no friends or family with them to share their memories.

I know another couple who saved up for a round-the-world trip and decided to get married in Fiji - no family or friends for them either. They had enough money either to do the trip of a lifetime or to splash out on a single day so they chose the 'honeymoon' option. The difficulty with inviting people to such an event is the cost, of course.

Anyway, back to Île Maurice - it was one of the friendliest islands we'd ever visited. For example, when we needed petrol for our hire car and the garage didn't accept credit cards, a complete stranger offered to lend us the cash!

In December, the weather is perfect and you can see the magnificent red 'flame' trees so, if you're looking for a warm festive alternative to the Far East or Australia, try Christmas in Mauritius.