Doha Diaries: My week in pictures #3

Friday, 28 February 2014

This time last week, I had a rare Friday off work, so I participated in the most popular Friday activity in Doha - brunch.
Party dress...check. Brunch companion...check. Enormous appetite & massive craving for sushi...check.
Matt and I hopped in a taxi to the W hotel to see what the Market brunch had to offer. And it had to offer a LOT.

(Do not be fooled by my tiny sushi portion and untouched chilli watermelon martini, this was just one of about five starter plates)
For those unfamiliar with the concept of brunch, as I was before I moved to Doha, you basically pay between 300-400QR to go to one of the many hotel restaurants and eat and drink yourself silly for four hours. It's GREAT, and whoever came up with the idea deserves a massive pat on the back for being a genius.
I was so overwhelmed by the sushi station that I actually forgot to take a picture of time! Above is the dessert station...all the cakes and treats you could possibly eat, a pancake and waffle station, a cheese station...
Salads, carved meats...all washed down with never ending red/white wine or bubbles. Now that is how Fridays should be spent!

At the weekend my university friend Chris arrived in Doha as he is doing the security for a jewellery and watch exhibition taking place in Doha this week. He took me out for dinner at the Four Seasons hotel, where we had a great big long catch up (about five years worth!) over pasta and incredible chocolate pudding in El Teatro.

Full of incredible chocolate pudding goodness, we headed up to Chris' room so I could have the grand tour. We book a lot of our studio guests into the Four Seasons so it was great to finally be able to see what the rooms were like. The Four Seasons know how to stock a mini bar!

On Tuesday night Matt and I ventured to the Souq to purchase some new fish and plant life for his fish tank, and to have some dinner. We ate at Tajine, a Moroccan restaurant in the very heart of the Souq. We both opted for the mixed grill, and I sampled a pot of Moroccan tea, poured with expert skill from a very great height! (I was so mesmerised that as usual I forgot to take a picture). Now that hour weather is getting warmer, the atmosphere outside is great. We sat upstairs in a roof top courtyard, a movie playing on a projector, surrounded by the tempting smell of shisha, every table filled with people happily chatting, eating, drinking or smoking.

We hailed a taxi and headed back for Champions League and a very competitive game of Monopoly.

My day off on Thursday was spent in my all time favourite place, down at the beach on my door step :) settled into a comfy pod with music, magazines and some Hawaiin Tropic tanning oil, I was all set for a relaxing afternoon.
Until the lure of the inflatable trampoline and see-saw became too much. Needless to say I ended up falling off the inflatable see-saw!
Come 1 o clock, it was time to dry off and refuel, so we headed to Gordon Ramseys opal to sample their business lunch menu - three courses from a selected menu for 100QR. I opted for the grilled veg salad with goats cheese sauce, the turkey escalope, and the vanilla profiteroles.
To top off a week of excessive eating, I attempted a roast dinner (of sorts) with my very own home made Yorkshire puddings (under the watchful eye of an actual Yorkshireman)

Doha is officially going to make me fat.

January/February Favourites

Monday, 17 February 2014

I love reading these posts from my favourite bloggers, so I thought I'd get involved and share my favourite products from the start of 2014.

Most of the below are new makeup purchases as my skin went a bit mental with breakouts and the dreaded shine after I came off my antibiotics post-hospital. Living in the desert, with a fast approaching summer of 40 odd degrees, finding products that keep shine to a minimum will be a godsend come May/June, so I'm quite glad iv now got these gems in my makeup bag.

BareMinerals Prime Time primer - an oil controlling primer which has made the perfect base for the rest of my shine control purchases


Benefit Erase Paste - this is absolutely no help for my shiny face, but it covers blemishes like no other! Iv never used a concealer that actually 'conceals' as well as this does. It's name is perfectly apt, it literally does 'erase' everything. Dark circles? What dark circles. Pores? Gone! It smells like blu-tac and is the consistency of toothpaste, but it's a winner if you can see past that.

Rimmel Stay Matte foundation - I've never used a mattifying foundation before and had visions of this being a nightmare to apply but I really enjoy using it. Iv found a colour that matches my pathetic attempt at a desert tan, and so far has kept my face shine free for the best part of the day.


BareMinerals Ready SPF 20 foundation - I buff in a layer of this over my Rimmel mattifying foundation, just for extra coverage. I love that you can build this foundation up to achieve the coverage you want. For days where my skin is behaving itself, or if I really don't want to wear too much makeup, il use this powder foundation on its own. I use R330 now that my skin has got a slight bit of colour to it as my previous colour paled me out a bit.

As iv cut right down on drinking due to my dodgy kidneys, iv found iv been treating myself to a lot more makeup than I would normally buy. The shine control products were necessity, but Benefit Coralista blush was a treat to myself. I've found that having a local Sephora store is a little bit dangerous for my bank balance!

BareMinerals Round The Clock waterproof eyeliner - I needed a new eyeliner, and this one took my fancy whilst I was perusing the BareMinerals counter. Its super black, and reminds me of the Barry M Eyeliner pen I used to love back home. Plus it stays put all day, bonus.

Maybelline Baby Lips - this lip balm is great! So moisturising, lasts for ages, and smells like Haribo (if you like that kind of thing!) plus it's SPF 20... I always neglect my lips when I'm sunbathing so this is a great little lip product for the desert. Sun protection without even having to think about it!

Barbra Daly Matte Perfection Pressed Powder - I actually stock piled this product from Tesco before I left the UK. It's brilliant! I always pat this on over the top of my makeup, and it instantly mattifies my skin. I carry it everywhere with me and will be repurchasing when I head home in April. Damn I miss Tesco!!!

Instant Calm - this is a brilliant product that was given to me as a sample by one of our studio pundits, Tony Dorigo, who's wife runs a cosmetic product business (google Skinkicks). This promises to soothe skin from redness and irritation and it does just that. I always put this on my face after sunbathing - it's a lovely, cooling product that soaks in quickly. Tony told me it has extract of liquorice which is apparently a natural soothing agent. Can't wait to try more products from the Skinkicks range!

My flatmate Sara bought me a set of Victorias Secret moisturises and body mists for Christmas, and from the set these are my absolute favourites. Whenever I wear these people comment on how good I smell (why, thank you very much!) I wear Vanilla Lace during the day, and Amber Romance in the evenings. Slightly addicted, and will be purchasing the full size versions when these miniatures run out (which won't be long, the way I'm getting through them!)

That concludes my monthly favourites for the start of 2014. I might try and steer clear of Sephora and attempt to save a bit of money this coming month!


Doha Diaries - My week in pictures #2

Saturday, 15 February 2014

Ive been pretty terrible at this blogging are some snaps of recent goings on in my life in the desert!

Getting my fix of animals...a giant fat cat called Schneider!
The GM of the Grand Hyatt hotel very kindly invited Sara and I to attend the Grammy Awards brunch, so out came the disco ball dress for the occasion!
Nabs & I

I've heard good things about Bread & Bagels so, one hungry evening I decided to order in - cream cheese and smoked salmon on one, and Nutella on the other!
Treated myself to a shiny new work phone
Sampling the cocktail menu at Trader Vics
Beverages at Hakkasan with our lovely rugby pundits - Rory Lawson, Pete Richards and David Wallace
This is an oldie from Christmas that only recently surfaced - Ali and I at Spice Market on Christmas Day
Anis and I at the launch of BeIN Sports
Matt and I took a wander to Katara and stopped for cupcakes at Red Velvet - I went for cookies and cream (can't resist anything Oreo!) and Matt opted for lemon
Me being a tourist, posing in the amphitheatre
Had a lovely meal here at Mamig recently with work pals - an Armenian/Lebanese restaurant that does the best humous iv had to date. You can sit up on the balcony and have shisha and look out across the sea...a pretty date spot :)
I haven't really posted any pictures of where I live so I thought this captures it quite well - I'm in the middle tower overlooking the city
Not content with his lemon cupcake, Matt stopped by the ice cream parlour for two scoops - melon and passion fruit
They were setting Katara up for National Sports day, a public holiday in Qatar that encourages Qataris and expats alike to participate in sporting activities. Sadly I had to work on this day so didn't get to see any of the goings on across Doha
My boss, longtime colleague and family friend Mossy left Doha to return to the UK to start a new job and be with his family, so we had a big leaving do for him at the Belgian Bar in the Old Intercontinental hotel. Alan Shearer came along and got papped by everyone so I thought I'd get involved!
The girls and I went to Spice Market in the W for Jemma's birthday meal. We celebrated before hand with strawberries and bubbles (and managed to resist cracking into the Red Velvet cupcakes!)
Valentines day was spent at the Grand Hyatt hotels 'Red Ball' carrying on the birthday celebrations for Jemma's birthday. Lovely Nigel Spackman couriered the new dress I'm wearing (Zara, current love!!!) all the way from England so I thought I'd show him some love!
Sara and I - team blonde, minus Vicky!
I've been trying to fill my time here in Doha with fun activities, and saying yes to as much as possible, and it seems I'm finally starting to enjoy my time here :)