Sunday, July 27, 2014

SunsilkGoodTimes in NYC 2014 {Day 1}

I've been away from my laptop for so long (apart from checking mails) that I feel a little weird typing this. Before I begin, I wanna wish all my Muslim friends and readers a Selemat Hari Raya! Enjoy this festive occasion, eats lots of yummy delicacies and have fun!:)

Things have been looking up for me lately. Not only was I invited to NYC last week for a global Sunsilk shoot, I've also completed poly a few days ago. I wouldn't say that I've graduated yet because I haven't received the certificate. As a matter of fact, I would only receive it next year. But not to worry, I'm happy enough to know that I'd made it through those dreadful three years and I have more time to do what I really want. 

For example, I've started filming for a new TV drama series which will be up on channel 5 next year. You'd probably already know from my Instagram but I haven't really officially announced it yet. I don't know how but I managed to get one of the major roles and I still can't quite believe it up till today. I don't have any proper training or experience in acting (you all know how the last one went) so I was really surprised when I got the news that I was picked to play the role that I auditioned for. 

I don't think I am allowed to give away much about the show yet? I'm not sure how this works. hahaha. Basically, it's called 2025 (you can kinda guess what it's gonna be about), I'm working alongside veteran actors like Amy Cheng, Gerald Chew and Lim Kay Tong, and it has an amazing script that I've fallen in love with over time. Just 5 days into filming it and I know that it's gonna be an awesome show. You guys have to support kay!!!!:( For more behind the scenes action, search the hashtag #2025tvseries on Instagram. Oh yeah, and I'm so god damn happy that it's in English. Muahahahaha!

Anyway, back to the whole point of this post...
SunsilkGoodTimes in NYC 2014 {Day 1}
No words can explain how touched I felt when I was told to fly to the states once more for the second global Sunsilk photo shoot. Firstly, I wanna thank God for everything he has done for my family and I. Truly, whatever he gives, he will provide. My readers would know that I come from an average income family and I didn't have much opportunities as a kid to fly abroad. In the past, my family struggled with financial difficulties and I'd always wished that I could help ease the burden one day. God blessed us and he gave me the life I'm leading today. I won't deny that I do get a lot of opportunities and I am grateful for them, and with them, I can now provide more for my family. 

Everything happens for a reason and I wanna thank everyone who've helped me reach the stage where I am now. God works through mysterious ways and this time, he did it through you :)
The day before I flew, things weren't going so great to be honest. I was worried about my final school report, I had to missed script reading for 2025, and Fai and I just weren't in the best of shape (But we're alright now.) Flying up to the states takes a total of 21 hours and I don't think I'll be able to endure it alone with all these thoughts in my head. Thankfully, this time, I was joined by two companions so the flight up wouldn't be so dreadful. Shawn from Unilever Singapore and my manager Audrey flew up to NYC with me this time! It feels a lot better to have the company of people you know going up to an unknown place with you. My anxiety was much less diminished and I could enjoy the trip a lot more with their care and concern :)

We flew via Eva Air this time, one of the top notch airline based in Taiwan, and I was spoilt with a business class air ticket. hehe. I felt very well taken care of by their EXTREMELY gorgeous flight attendants (I swear they all look like they could be celebrities) and though they served pretty good in-flight food, I was asleep most of the time. Traveling up to NYC once taught me how to utilise my time on flight so that it wouldn't feel so long. I did it by tiring myself out the day before so that I could go into deep slumber on the flight. hehe.

One of the few things I woke up to eat- Ice Cream!!
We arrived in NYC at night so I didn't take any photos since everything was practically hidden by the darkness. Don't worry! I took plenty of pictures over the next few days, much more than what I took last year. In fact, I even took videos of the entire journey. I just need to find time to edit it :)

This year, we put up at The Standard, High Line. It's a beautiful hotel that overlooks the Hudson River with New Jersey on the other end. It was small but it was dream room. I wished I could have a room like that! Where I could wake up everyday to a stunning view of the majestic river, or go to sleep with the city lights gleaming on my face. 

If you've been to NYC, you'd know that High Line's a place that NEVER SLEEPS. We could be going back to the hotel after a long day out with heavy eyelids, but the lobby would be constantly packed with gorgeous people dressed to the nines (whether it's the weekends or not!). It's the district that comes to life at night. It's so alive that the infamous fight between Jay-Z and Solange Knowles broke out in the exact hotel we were staying in. So close to seeing Beyonce or any A-listers huh? ;)
As soon as we settled down, Shawn, Audrey and I headed out to a local pharmacy nearby to get some supplies. Well, I didn't really need anything and I wasn't intending to buy anything yet since we had 3 more days in NYC. But I couldn't resist the temptation when I saw the goodies they had in store. 

Only in America would you find Oreo with MEGA STUF or Birthday Cake flavour! Everything's practically oversized in NYC which is awesome news for chocolate lovers like myself. I bought an extra large Hershey's bar that lasted me the entire stay in NYC. hahaha. I couldn't say no to instant Mac and Cheese, and I finally bought my own VOSS water bottle. I'm sure you've seen these bottles on Instagram- where people would add in cut fruits to make detox water. Doing that with a Ice Mountain bottle is fine but with my VOSS bottle, it's now Insta-worthy too! hehehe
After which, we tucked in and slept. I shared my room with Audrey this time so it was a lot less scary. haha. I hate sleeping alone especially in hotel rooms. The last time I made Fai talk to me through Skype until I fall asleep. After a really long and tiring flight, it was so hard to wake up especially since the bed was so comfy. But we did anyway! It was time to meet the other bloggers and head out for another adventure around the city that never sleeps.
I told you that I'd come more prepared this time. So I brought both my Samsung NXmini and Canon DSLR out with me. NYC is a perfect place to take OOTDs. hehehe. Every junction, every corner and every wall was PERFECT. And with Audrey around, I could get beautiful shots of my outfits everyday in NYC. Thank you Audrey! <3

Top from MDS.
Skirt from Chacey Love.
Bag from Saint HK.
This year, there were 7 of us- Singapore, India, Peru, Mexico, Brazil, Argentina and Turkey. Everyone was really shy at first but it didn't take long for us to start talking about how excited we were. It was also interesting to hear how blogging is different in all our countries. Hearing their stories made me realised that I should be somewhat glad that Singapore's a tiny country so spreading word about my blog is easier compared to what they face. Everyone's story were different story but there were some similarities as well, so it was pretty eye opening.
From left to right: Karen from Brazil (she's hilarious!), Sherry from India (the only other girl who came back again with me<3) and Lulu from Argentina! My yellow skin is really showing here! hahaha. #AsianPride
We were taken to Buvette at West Village for breakfast. 

42 Grove Street, New York.
New York 11014

Food you find in NYC is delicious, Buvette is no exception. If you're looking to start your day with authentic European breakfast, you gotta visit this place. I hope my pictures does it justice.
Start off with servings of fresh cut out fruits.
Drizzle on some oatmeal yoghurt with berries.
Madeleine to satisfy your sweet tooth.
Little butter croissants. 
More berries!!! MY FAV.
Breakfast was AMAZING. I wished I could have food like that everyday :( I would wake up just to eat them! I swear. After which, we took a walk down West Village to visit the famous Magnolia Bakery along Bleeker street. 

Yes, we walked!! Because this time, it was REALLY summer in NYC. Remember how I only brought summer clothes the last time and didn't have enough to layer on in the cold? I didn't want that to happen again, so I brought all my boots and jackets this time only to find out how hot it was in NYC :( Complete opposite of what happened! hahaha. Almost everyone in NYC wore flip flops, shorts or maxi dresses, but I was dressed for fall or something -.- 

Oh wells... everyone loved the sun but I hated it. I want to get out of Singapore so badly because it's too humid but I ended up facing the same thing in NYC too. hahaha. Well, at least it wasn't as bad as it is here in SG.

Visuals time!!! I took quite a handful of random shots while walking down Bleeker Street. Everything's so beautiful in West Village.
I don't splurge on designer brands but... I want this Michael Kors :(
We stopped by a pretty looking store and bought.. Macaroons! Every girls' favourite. Nahh.. I'm not a fan of them. I just like to look at them. hehe
Visiting NYC isn't completed until you visit SOHO!! But take this as a warning girls, you'll probably go broke here. Soho's a district where you'll find an extensive range of boutiques that offers trendy apparels. Think American Apparel, UNIF, Topshop etc. Our first stop was a store called LF, located at 149 Spring St. New York. Just take one look at their site and I'm sure you'll know why and how to go broke here------>

By God's grace, I managed to hold back and walk out of the store without spending a single cent! hahaha. But I was so tempted. They have EVERYTHING a Singaporean girl would want in her closet. Tribal outwears, gladiator sandals, crochet tops, acid wash denim shorts etc.
LF may be a little too costly. But if you're looking for cheap alternatives, you'll be in for a treat at Necessary Clothing. It's located at 4 different locations which you can find here. It offers slightly edgier pieces that I am in love with! I bought a couple of tops here, some of which only costs USD$7! Which might probably cost SGD$29 here in Singapore on local blogshops. Just check their site out, I'm sure you'll love it!
After about 2 hours of shopping, we were brought to Balthazar for lunch once again! By this time, after all that walking and shopping, we were all drained out and needed food. What better place to dine at than Balthazar Restaurant 

80 Spring St, New York.
New York 10012

Sherry and I have already been here last year but we were both still just as excited to come back again for more! Balthazar is a restaurant rich in history and boasts a wide variety of dishes on it's menu. It's always bustling with a vast amount of customers so make sure to make a reservations to avoid disappointment. MUST GO PLACE.
I was so hungry, I just wanted something huge and savoury to satisfy and fill up my empty tummy! So amidst all that "atas" food, I settled for Bar Steak with Frites. hahaha. It was so delicious! The steak was tender and grilled to perfection. The garlic butter gave the dish an extra boost and the fries are to die for! I'm craving for it this very instant. The serving size at Balthazar is really huge though, so unless you're a big eater, you might wanna consider sharing a plate with a friend.
Finally in our tour van! We're off to visit some old friends- the ponies and horses at Central Park ;)
I didn't take much pictures the last time I was on the Horse and Carriage ride. So I made sure to grab as many as I can this time. The ride's a great way to just sit back and relax from all that shopping and walking in the concrete jungle. 
I wished I had one more extra day to just unwind and chill at Central Park. I'm not a very nature sort of girl but it's beautiful isn't it?
We got to feed our pony too! hehehe. It gobbled up the carrot before I could even get a proper picture taken. And if you noticed, I changed my shoes in the middle of the tour! Got these pair of sick sandals from Barney's! hehehe. They're MM6 ;)
Food stalls, you'd see them everywhere in NYC. Kinda like how you'd always see those $1 ice cream stalls around at Orchard Road.
We were brought back to the hotel upon completion of the tour to freshen up, change and get ready to meet the Sunsilk Co-creators/experts. I was dead tired by then but was extremely excited to meet my long lost friends once again! 

Beautiful Louis from Salt London looking stunning in lilac!
Sherry, poise as ever!
And Karla from Mexico is just gorgeous isn't she?
By evening, the weather was perfect. The sun had gone down, we had wind in our hair, it was chilly but endurable. If only Singapore could feel like that too.
With Shawn!! Wouldn't be able to go to NYC without him! <3 Doesn't he look stylish!
We arrived at a different hotel for the meet up and it was beautiful. I know I've used that word a million times in this post but I can't help it! NYC is REALLY beautiful. The little party was held on a roof overlooking the sunset. It was so mesmerising and was probably one of the most gorgeous things I've ever seen thus far. I would love to hold my 21st birthday party at such a location. It would be perfect.
Finally reunited with Yuko!! No one will or can ever get tired of this lady. She's just the sweetest thing! You'll only know what I mean when you meet her personally. She can't speak English but that doesn't mean there's any barriers between us whatsoever. She shows sincerity through her actions and through her warm smile. It's always a pleasure to meet her <3
With Rita, Shawn and Tom! <3 Candy colour hair is a huge craze in Singapore and it all began when Katy Perry dyed her's a stunning electric blue hue. Guess what? Rita's started the entire trend!! She did it for Katy not knowing that it was gonna be huge. It was such an honour to meet and work with such a huge figures like Rita and Tom.
New York day 1 was tiring but it was amazing!! When people ask me what I miss/like most about it, I'll always reply excitingly that I love the people! I don't know why people are constantly saying that New Yorkers are snobbish and rude. It's so not true?!?! I guess it also depends on which part you've been to. But from where I went, everyone's so nice and friendly. It just feels good to live in a place where everyone's willing to lend a helping hand with a genuine smile on their face. 

Sighh.. I miss it already :(
Thank you Sunsilk for sending me over. You've helped me live my dream, not once, but twice! <3 <3 
Ending this post with a stunning view of just a small part of the city. Anything can happen there. It's a city of endless possibilities. New York, you will always be close to my heart. 
Just wanna say this before I go. Thank you everyone who've spoken up and supported me in the recent incident on Instagram. Whatever happened was a total misunderstanding and as mentioned before, my post and it's caption was not intended to insult, challenge or hurt anyone. It was a mere joke that was interpreted wrongly. To everyone who'd left kind words of encouragement on my Instagram or through text or whatsapp, thank you so much :) I may not be able reply them just yet or ever, but it doesn't mean I don't care. I've read them and I cannot be more grateful for having you all in my life.

Always remember that it's always better to be Loved than Feared of.
To a better future! God bless.

Eunice Annabel

1 comment:

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