Summer Nights in Ginza

Summer nights are made for ice cream and sunsets, and in Ginza, Tokyo’s upscale shopping and entertainment district, you can get the best of both. This neighborhood houses all the top luxury brand stores (Hermes, Louis Vuitton, Chanel, etc.), a plethora of gourmet restaurants, and the famous Kabuki-za Theatre. I like visiting Ginza this time on the weekends because the city turns Chuo Dori, one of the main streets in the area, into a huge pedestrian space from noon until about 1800. Visitors can walk around without the worry of traffic and really take in the window displays, enjoy the summer weather, and people watch.

The iconic Wako Department store and the Hattori Clock Tower (pictured here) are located in the heart of Ginza. It’s one of the most popular stores in the area, known for its jewelry and housewares selection and the art gallery located on the sixth floor (it’s really cool). I took this picture of the famous building while enjoying a cool and refreshing ice cream sundae from Ramo Frutas Cafe. It’s just across the street, and if you’re lucky, you can get a table on the balcony with an unobstructed view.

Ginza is known for being one of the ritziest neighborhoods in Tokyo. The real estate is actually the most expensive in all of Japan. And that means most things here are pretty pricey, so be prepared. My ice cream, while delectable, cost me a whopping ¥1500 ($13 U.S.), and I’ve heard of cafes selling lattes with price tags higher than ¥700 ($6.50). But don’t let that stop you from checking out this part of Tokyo. You don’t have to spend a ton to enjoy the vibe and energy here. ✨

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Summertime Dreaming

One of the best parts about visiting Okinawa is island hopping. There are quite a few isles that surround (and are part of) the main archipelago, Okinawa Honto. Continue reading Summertime Dreaming

Summer Days in Hong Kong

The cold, rainy weather we’ve had lately has me longingly thinking and wishing for the balmy heat and constant sunshine of the summer days I spent in Hong Kong. Don’t get me wrong, I love winter. I love cold, snowy weather. But rain… you can keep that.

I took this photo while visiting a temple in Lantau Island. It really shows the climate during my stay there. Blue skies with a few clouds. Warm. Green. Tropical. Hong Kong stays pretty warm all year round, but the warmth and clamminess of July is perfect (well… if you like that sort of thing).

This day was truly splendid. The palm trees swaying, a light breeze gusting, the smell of incents wafting through the air… I could do with a little bit of all of that right now.

New York State of Mind

There’s no place quite like New York City. A few come close, but none can truly measure up. New York is so full of life, and it’s absolutely the city that never sleeps. But it’s so much more than that. It’s more than the lights and 24-hour availability (although, that is one of the things I really love about this place). The city has hundreds of neighborhoods, all with different a look and vibe. It’s the most diverse place I’ve ever been, and that’s what makes it my favorite place in this whole wide world. There are people from all parts of the world and every walk of life. I strongly believe that being around people who are different from you cultivates growth and learning. So it’s a great place to evolve.

But also, New York has the best bagels, slices, fashion and musical theater, among many other things. Mostly though, it’s a place that makes me feel like anything is possible.

I ❤ NY.