Why Personal Branding is everything in the world of Instagram

Recently i went to Personal Branding Masterclass held by Renowned Personal Branding Strategist & Photographer Zahrina Robertson. Zahrina just launched her first book “Magnetic Branding”  and is famous for photographing super stars like Richard Branson, Dannii Minogue, Tim Ferris, Dale Beaumont to name a few. Zahrina is all about personal branding and how potential clients will perceive you as a brand. She is fun, knowledgeable and entertaining, she is just as magnetic as her own vision of what your business should be; magnetic, successful and profitable.

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Photography is her passion, she turned average looking, unprofessional LinkedIn and media profiles into Business winning, money making work of art. Her approach is simple; matching  you personality to your career. However, development of your business won’t stop at creating a striking image – Zahrina offers online and offline personal branding strategies too.

The event starting with an introduction to Zahrina’s vision and her portfolio of work. Stories about her client’s success and life changing moments after taking the right approach to their personal branding. The morning was full of energy and positivity.  The example of her work can be found HERE

The morning session ended with champagne lunch, mingling with other successful ladies, discussing what we have learned this morning. And so the Personal Branding Workshop started ( i think the cost was $397), Zahrina discussed everyone’s personal business goals, what we love, what we hate, who do we want to work with, etc and gave us valuable tips on how to get there. I am not going to get into any details here as this is something you will need to learn from her personally, either via online or personal sessions or maybe from buying her book ” Magnetic Branding”

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To get in contact with Zahrina, call 0413-338-826

Website : http://zahrinaphotography.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ZahrinaRobertson

LinkedIn: https://au.linkedin.com/in/zahrinaphotography

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/zahrinaphotography/

 

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Opening Night of Cha Li Boi Yum Cha

IMG_0213It seems like only yesterday The Queen of Rice Paper Rolls” announced closure of the famous ” MissChu”. I bet you miss her amazing Phos, prawn and mango rice paper rolls and duck pancakes  just as much as i do, one of her cute little tuckshops used to be right next to my house and one of my favourite take out places for some fine Vietnamese.

“MissChu’s dead; she was my ego and she let me down,” Nahji Chu (aka Miss Chu) announced in late 2014 and we were all expecting a massive come back, something bigger and greater. And so here it is. In the begging of May 2017 Nanji Chu launch a modern Yum Cha restaurant “Cha Li Boi”  in Bondi Junction .

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Nahji Chu is a true inspiration, i love seeing strong women like her rise from the ground up and create amazing things! In her speech she mentioned how her mum wanted her to get a full time job like everyone else, when she was younger, and Nahji replied that is was so irresponsible of her to propose that, when she was fully capable of being an independent entrepreneur, create fabulous venues and give people jobs.

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The launch started with french champagne – Taittinger Cuvee Prestige, The Stiff Roaster ( Johnny Walker Black whiskey, ginger, fresh lemon and pineapple) and Hidden Dragon ( Pampero Blanco rum, Absinthe La Fee rinse, lychee liqueur, coconut water) Cocktails. And Philter beer on tap.

 

 

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We were lucky to taste the whole menu of the delicous Hong Kong inspired Yum Cha. Pacman Dumplings is an absolute must try on your next visit to Cha Li Boi

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Clams is another must try! Fresh and delicate

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There can’t be Yum Cha without Peking Duck, made to perfection.

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And spring rolls, of course

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Pork buns and “leather jacket” dumplings

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As you can tell “leather jacket” dumplings and loster and scampi dumplings were the most popular ones.

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“Ants climbing trees” is the name of a pork mince dish, there is a vegan version of this dish made with seaweed and kelp noodles.

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This is probably the first Yum Cha restaurant with the dance floor and a DJ, why not try some decadent dumplings and delicious cocktails and go for a boogie after?

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By the way, for all my Melbourian readers, Miss Chu is still blossoming in Melbourne and i’ve met their amazing and stylish director

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What a great night! Thank you for inviting us Cha Li Boi Yum Cha, we will be back for some late night yum cha shortly

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Verdem Skincare Launch – QVB, Sydney

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Would you try a snake venom creme as an alternative to Botox? Or have your face covered in 24 carat gold or liquid diamonds? Well i did. I went to launch of Verdem the other day where you get the chance to try all the expensive skincare and treatments. Verdem combines multiple high end (and new to our market) brands such as Origani, Lionesse, Celestolite,Venofye… to name a few. The launch was amazing with delicious canapes and Chandon to celebrate the opening of something new and bit different at QVB.

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The first treatment i have tried was the Black Pearl’s 24k gold facial mask on one side of my face so i could tell you the difference later. Cannot tell you exactly the RRP was over $1000 for a jar of liquid gold.

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We all have heard of similar masks and treatments with use of 24K gold BUT here is one little twist that made me speechless, you do not remove this mask the same way you do any other! You use a real magnet that comes with the jar and it, literally, sucks out all the gold that has been absorbed in your pores, it takes out the gold particles and also all the dirt and impurities from your skin. Just check it out, the beautician did not even touch my skin with it and here is the result of what came out!

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This is by far the most expensive brand i have ever came across, complete skincare range will cost you a fortune or few grand to say the least. But results were amazing! My skin looked so clean and flawless for days after that quick treatment. My pores were very clear too. So if you do have that kinda money, by all means go ahead and spoil yourself because is absolutely worth it!

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The other side of my face tried the snake venom mask by Venofye. This mask supposed to work the same way  botox does, but obviously without the needles involved. It gets very hot once you put it on you face but once you take the mask of you can see the result instantly. I mean there is nothing drastic, but skin looks tightened and more plumped.

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Verdem have amazing range of products to try, to me, they are quite unique. Like for exactly the Diamond peel from Lionesse. Liquid diamonds are put on your skin, then easily peeled off revealing the smoothest, brightest skin. Very impressive1-13

I only tried it on my hand as i had no space left on my face from all the treatments applied, but this is what it looks like

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Another great brand i have tried at Verdem is Gaya cosmetics. Which is natural make up line. I am going to be honest, i am yet to find a good natural make-up brand and this one did not impress me much to commit to it.

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I loved the lipsticks and mascara ( that we got to take home) but once again i am disappointed with the foundations and facial powders, uneven consistency and pores are even more visible after the application. So yes to everything in Gaya collection except for the foundation/powders.

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I did get a quick make over and my skin looked amazing after all the treatments, as you can see

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The event was a lot of fun. Thank you Verdem for inviting me and treating me like a queen.

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Dessert came with little gold leaves, how sweet 🙂

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March Into Merivale 2017

This year March into Merivale started with a storm and everyone being completely drenched. Which in a way was amazing as it was not crowded like last year.  So this year Merivale came up with something a little bit different, and transformed the whole ivy complex altogether. This year Ash Street Laneway became Asian Street Food Market, Pailings was transformed into Australia vs Mexico dinner feast, Level 2 bars into Heavenly High Tea, The Den into AMEX, The Ballroom into European Garden and The Pool Club into Ibiza Party. The tickets were $60 BUT (unlike last year) the food vouchers were only for drinks, meaning  you get 3 drinks of your choice per person and you can eat all your want ( although they were trying to limit it to 11 dishes per person, but it did not seem like they were running out anyway)

unnamed (20)Pailings served amazing Grilled Prawn Skewers with mango and chilli salsa – my absolute favourite out of what Palings had to offer. Ultimate cheeseburger is the second favourite, a must try for all you burger lovers out there. And other dishes such as Rotisserie lamb tacos, mushroom quesadilla with spicy pebre sauce, smoked hot wings and spinach dip puffs. Mexican vibe was present everywhere you look, from hosts outfits, to decorations to an authentic live lucha libre match right in front of you.

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Level 2 was decorated with balloons and flowers and served Pina Colada Marshmellows, Passionfruit chocolate truffles, doughnuts, Dulcey caramel mousse tuille cups and other desserts

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Ibiza themed Pool Club served Buffalo Sausages, Entrana Steaks, delicious clams cooked in a large paella pan, Pork bellies prepared in front of you over fire. And anise seed liquor over shaved ice. I loved the atmosphere of The Pool Club and we were extremely lucky for the rain to finally stop and since it was not busy just yet, we managed to get a nice table and enjoy the view.

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Not to forget dessert Creme Catalan Tart

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The Ballroom, however, was the highlight of the whole venue.  Pimped out to the fullest and covered in flowers head to toe by Flower Head (Merivale’s in-house florist). Apart from live band and exquisite decorations, the masterpiece of the ballroom was most definitely the giant cheese and cured meat spread, right in the middle of the room, and probably (from what it looked like) five meters long.

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Towards the end of the launch the laneway was filled with people to the point that it was extremely hard to get through. Just like the true Asian Market. It was actually insane and probably the only negative thing about the night. But that’s were (if you manage to get through) you can try some authentic Asian dishes like Pork Belly Bao, Fried Chicken Bao, Sichuan Cumin Lamb Skewers, Thai Moo Ping Skewers, Stem Prawn Shumai, King Crab Scallop, Crispy Duck Spring Rolls to name a few.

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Till next year March Into Merivale!

Cafe Perons Sundown Sessions

Cafe Perons is located in the heart of Bay street, Double Bay. In fact, it’s my local lunch and coffee place. Cafe Perons is well known for it’s amazing healthy salads and Mediterranean cuisine, but now it is also open for sundown sessions Friday and Saturday evenings. Where you can come in for a cocktail or a glass of wine and share decadent antipasto platters with friends.

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Cafe Perons Sundown Sessions Launch was a lot of fun. With amazing watermelon cocktails, canapes, cheese board and,of course, huge plate of finest antipasto selections right in the middle of the room!

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Caffe Perons

Corner of Short and Bay Streets, Double Bay NSW 2028

Please note, all images are copyrighted. If you would like to use our images please contact us via email to discuss – marina@marinaspark.com For Instagram use please give us a shout out using @marinaspark and also link to our blog

Endeavour Tap Rooms Launch

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Amazing new venue launched last night in the heart of The Rocks, a beautiful old fashion brewery with a modern twist delivering huge selection of beer brands and beer on tap, together with with extensive wine list and delicious bubbly that i was lucky to try.

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Endeavour Tap Room is a brewery, bar and restaurant all in one, great location and great atmosphere. The food was absolutely delicious, you must try the burgers and the lamb!

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This venue is perfect for catching up with friends after work or to have lunch with an amazing view of historical location.

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T2 Teas: The Recipe for Perfect Chai

Earlier this year T2 had an amazing pop up store in Pitt Street mall that allowed customers to create their very own blend of Chai. Apart from huge variety of spices and teas the packaging and store decorations were absolutely incredible! The price for a large tint of personally selected Chai was $40, in my opinion it was worth the money but each to their own.

So here is what you see when you come in. Truly magical.

Once you walk in, you will get to choose one of the beautiful tins for your tea, gold, rose gold or black. Rose gold for me, of course, since it matches my decor at home.

Your next step is to select the tea leaves and up to 5 spices. I like my Chai sweet and spicy, if you have similar taste you can follow my recipe.

My selection for tea leaves ended up being Red Rooibos, they are loose tea with health benefits and no caffeine, which is perfect for cold evenings at home.

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After that you get to add extra blend to your selection of tea leaves,  my selection were Indian Spice to make it more authentic, Honey Green Almon for nutty flavour and Spi Chai with anise seeds for spiciness and a bit of personality.

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Then i have added some extras such as Choc Chips for the perfect chocolaty flavour, Just Rose for aroma and appearance, Orange Peel for the citrusy taste and Chilli Flakes and Red Pepercorns for an extra kick

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And there it is the perfect spicy Chai that is good for you yet can pretty much replace a desert when added with Coconut or Almond Milk. Perfection on a rainy day! Or you can just stare at it because it is that beautiful.

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Please note, all images are copyrighted. If you would like to use our images please contact us via email to discuss – marina@marinaspark.com For Instagram use please give us a shout out using @marinaspark and also link to our blog

A Guide to Sydney Flower Markets

I am a bit crazy and sometimes i need  flowers in the middle of the night, so basically this is what happened. I got myself out of a bed at 4am and drove to Sydney Flower Markets where you can purchase locally grown or imported flowers for a fraction of a price, not to mention the variety you can find all in one place.

Continue reading “A Guide to Sydney Flower Markets”

Nardini Cocktail Mixing Challenge

I must admit I did end up at this event by a pleasant accident and it turned out to be so much fun. Nardini Cocktail Mixing Challenge is an event for local food bloggers to come up with their own signature cocktail concept and ingredients, so you can imaging how boozie it all ended up by the end of the night. A very fun night in other words.

The event was hosted by the amazing wine and spirits importer Robert Dessanti from The Wog With The Grog at The Porsche Sydney South. Absolutely perfect venue, hot cars, delicious food and cocktails. I’ve also got to meet the  the Sydney Oyster Girls roaming the party and presenting freshly opened oysters. What a great idea and the girls were super lovely and cute, here is their website if you would like to book them for your events and parties ( http://www.sydneyoystergirls.com.au). Now how good do the cocktails look! Continue reading “Nardini Cocktail Mixing Challenge”