Candid Conversations – Women Empowerment

Primarkpants, Turban, Turbanista, Backyardshoez, Primarkpants, Floralpants

Hello Peaches, Happy New Month. January’s ‘drought’ had clearly drained me. I couldn’t afford to think. My new blog post is on the candid conversations event that I attended this Tuesday. It was an enlightening moment for me. I am grateful to my dear friend Ibtisam (Hijabeefied) for informing me about the candid conversations event which we attended together with Farhana Oberson (let’s empower each other, shall we?). Candid conversations is a woman exclusive event birthed by Patokelo with an aim to help women in Kenya build their businesses/ brands offering entrepreneurial ideas through raw, motivational, and inspirational conversations. A panel of phenomenal women being their authentic self, publicly sharing their personal stories inspiring and motivating women to get out of their comfort zones by harnessing the collective energy of women uplifting fellow women to achieve their goals and build their businesses/brands. The candid conversations was with social media experts: This is Ess, Sowairina, Connie Alluoch, Muthoni Njoba, The official Sonal Maherali, Craving Yellow, and many others. I felt honored to be in the same room with all these fierce women.

The event was scheduled to start at 6:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m. at Capital Club in Westlands. Upon arrival, we were directed to sign in the guest list form with our contact details and then ushered in for refreshments and for us to get an opportunity to network before the event commenced.

A few minutes later, we were called in for the candid conversations.

Renee Ngamau (Speaker, Capital FM Presenter, Life and Business Strategist) was the MC for the event. She warmly welcomed us with a short therapy session to keep us alert, guiding us through the marvelous event.

Patricia Okelo showcased her book – A candid handbook for women doing business. Her goal is not only to promote and enhance gender equality, but also career and business advancements among women in business in Kenya. The struggle usually comes where women run businesses or work yet socially recognized as nurturers of the home.

“Although we’re advancing in the workplace and in business, our role as nurturers doesn’t change.” Patricia Okelo.

Fundamentally, the book encourages women in businesses to be part of the economic growth of the country like men do, without neglecting their household roles; women are the integral part of the society. Moreover, addressing issues and challenges that women in business face. Giving us tips and entrepreneurial ideas on how to strategize our businesses/brands and monetizing our social media presence. It’s a brilliant initiative for women to pursue their palpable passion with full dedication.

“I always believe that one woman’s success can only help another woman’s success.” Gloria Vanderbilt.

Sonal Maherali (luxury blogger) talked about her passion for luxury. Her main aspiration is to remove the Asian cultural stigma that puts women down instead of uplifting the girl child. She runs a luxury page on Instagram and YouTube and confesses her addiction to shoes (Shoe Queen). Listening to her bold fierce talks gives you confidence to go out there and pursue your dreams without anyone’s validation.

Sharon Mundia (This_is_Ess) is a Kenyan Lifestyle Blogger and YouTuber who’s come a long way to motivate and inspire young girls to join the blogging and influencer world which is currently growing in Kenya. I was in her candid conversations circle, therefore, I learnt a lot from her with regard to the lifestyle blogging tips. According to Sharon, it takes a lot of courage, hard work, dedication and passion to thrive in the blogging world as some of the challenges faced are harsh judgments, invasion of personal space, the anxiety of keeping up with brands, and losing yourself in the process. She advises young women out there to stand for what they believe in and reject any sort of business offers that do not align with their principles. It shouldn’t be about the money, but the brand’s ethics. We have to create a niche we are comfortable with, without feeling the need to conform ourselves to people’s expectations as every group has its audience. Most importantly, do not post content for the sake of being consistent but post only when you are most inspired. Truthfully, you can’t please everyone and that’s okay.

Furthermore, newer social media tools like paid sponsorships, promotional ads, live, and polls, give online brands a much easier platform for recognition and engagement with their followers online thus every brand should utilize them and maximize on their usage. Additionally, she encouraged us to learn to use the trendiest social media platforms like Instagram and YouTube where majority of millennials gravitate toward because chances of getting recognition are higher than in an abandoned one with less users.

Muthoni Njoba is a Professional Make-Up Artist and YouTuber; The first Kenyan Make-Up Artist to be assigned as the lead Brand Ambassador of an International cosmetic brand Maybelline New York Kenya. I learnt from her inspirational conversation that you have to be ambitious and push forward till you achieve your goals. The road to success is not easy but giving up should not be an option; we have to grab the world by the lapels if we badly need success. She advises young women to start small businesses with little resources like how she started off as a self taught freelance makeup artist and slowly but gradually you’ll get there. More also, she advises young women to practice self love. Never victimize yourself in any situation or give into your insecurities. We need to build confidence in ourselves.

Connie Alluoch is an award winning fashion stylist in Kenya. Through her candid talk, she taught us that we have to find the right tactics for our businesses. That we should be aware of our business progress (stats, followers, sales, e.t.c.) and find ways to grow in a way that’ll attract and satisfy your target audience / followers / clients by developing approaches that are more responsive to their needs. Therefore, learn your audience, change your road-map in your business approach if your current one isn’t working, find solutions, and hone in the solutions over time.

Grace Sowairina is a fashionable media personality and Vivo Activewear Ambassador supporting single mothers like herself. Her inspirational conversation taught us the essence of being in touch with our spiritual self. She talked passionately about her love for vivo activewear which is a go-to store for chic, quality and affordable clothes & accessories. It’s majorly popular for offering tailor-fit stylish clothes that complement the modern African women of all sizes, courtesy of Wandia Gichuru; Co-Founder and Managing Director of Vivo Activewear.

Tabitha (Craving Yellow) – Natural hair Blogger and YouTuber – also took us through her natural hair journey promoting self love & care, persistence and patience.

The phenomenal women in the room showed a great deal of compassion to the rest of us who were new to the event hence nobody had the fear of being bludgeoned through their personal confidential candid talks inspiring women to thrive, and unleash the wonder woman in us.

We left with our goody bags filled with  amazing dried Mango fruit I couldn’t stop munching from Azuri, delicious chilli from Rizichiskitchen , and green tea from Stir Me Tea which i’m still yet to try.

In a nutshell, the candid conversations circle is a repository of women empowerment which offer young girls and women in business entrepreneurial insights and female role models to look up to; courtesy of Patricia Okelo. I left feeling more inspired and motivated than I have ever been. Also, because I met and engaged with my all time favorite blogger Sharon Mundia a.k.a This_is_Ess in the candid conversations circle. I feel like I can stop blogging now, ‘I made it’! Haha I kid. ♥️

Scarf: Fashion.buffet

Lippie: Fenty Beauty Stunna Lip Paint

Top: M&S

Pants: Primark

Shoes: Backyard Shoez

Photo CreditsKimachianator

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Kilifi Entrepreneurship & Innovation Youth Summit and Churchill Live Show Malindi

Entrepreneurship and Innovation Youth Summit was a 3-day event (29th – 31st March 2019) held at Pwani University in Kilifi hosted by  Kenya Conference Solutions for the purposes of unveiling the Big4 Agenda and Blue Economy Opportunities for the Youth in Kilifi County. The free Entrepreneurship and Innovation Youth Summit provides a platform for youth to share their knowledge, skills and ideas, and an opportunity to directly engage with Innovators, Leaders, Entertainers, Social Champions, Entrepreneurs and Delegates to empower Kilifi youth, and nurture their knowledge and skills through mentorship that can help build Kilifi County.

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“One of the best decisions we made this year was attending the free Entrepreneurship and Innovation Youth Summit fueled our identity as youth to take part in the efforts of changing our country and the world to a sustainable place for everyone.” Kilifi Youth – Kenya Conference Solutions.

“It is inevitable to talk about achieving the Big4 Agenda without including youth. We are no longer the future leaders, we are the NOW leaders. Delighted to be joining in this very important Youth Summit.” CKK Charles Kamau – Public Engagement & Communications Enthusiast. – Kenya Conference Solutions.

The official opening of the Kilifi Entrepreneurship and Innovation Youth Summit was entertaining; A fashion show by Designers Vera of Vee Fashionhouse and Charity of Stella Customised Fashion Kenya and performances by Dj Kryotic & Proff Kenya. The performance was lit – no, literally! There was a sensational fire hooping dance alongside his performance. A more surprising one by Mwanase Ahmed, Co-owner & Managing Director, Distant Relatives Ecolodge & Backpackers; Mwanase Hoops.

 

 

Agendas discussed of the Big4 Agendas to brainstorm on issues that are currently hindering youth’s growth in business and innovations for long-term solutions. Esteemed panelists discussed Manufacturing, Affordable Housing, Universal Healthcare and Food Security.

“The only way that Kilifi Youth can actively participate in the global economy is through investment in our vibrant, talented youth. Investing in the youth is investing in the future and the industries of tomorrow. That is the only way to reach our Big4 Agenda and keep them going for generations to come.” Hon. Martha Koki – Nominated Member of the County Assembly of Kilifi.

“Don’t be where you are needed, be where you are loved.” Mzee Jalango Mwenyewe.

 

 

Youth Participants

Kilifi Youth participants set their tents and tables to promote their businesses by showcasing their products and services.

 

 

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Photography: Gaze Photography

Also, Kilifi Youth participants had an innovation competition and the social champions will be announced during the award ceremony #TeamKCS hashtag on twitter.

 

 

Photography: Gaze Photography & Kenya Conference Solutions 

Churchill Live Show Malindi

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Churchill Live Show was the highlight of the day closing the night in Malindi, Kilifi County with uproarious laughter! Malindians surprised Mwalimu Churchill with a massive turn out. Daniel Churchill Ndambuki is a Kenyan Comedian who hosts the comedy TV show Churchill Show on NTV Kenya on Sundays and Thursdays.

Katoi Watabaka – Percussionist of Mijikenda Jazz Band based in Malindi – was given the golden opportunity by Mwalimu Churchill to open the stage entertaining the audience with his percussion musical performance for one hour, alongside Mambo Tribe Music movement from Malindi as well. The stadium was packed like sardines!

I don’t do well in crowded places but the quality laughter from different comedians made it worth the stay. The transposed humor from all comedians’ performances brought waves of laughter at the show.

 

 

Comedian Prof. Hamo shot his shot that night picking his flower Nadia Maria from the Churchill Show audience garden. I’d say he’s got good taste!

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Talented Malindians; comedians, giriama dancers, music artists and spoken word artists performed as well communicating to the world that Malindi got talent too.

Special Guest Officials: Mombasa Governor Hon. Hassan Ali Joho, Kilifi Governor Hon. Amason Jeffah Kingi, Malindi MP Hon. Aisha Jumwa Katana, courteously welcomed Churchill Show and gave a speech addressing the cheerful crowd as they danced to ¤Tetema¤ on stage.

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Malindi umetushangaza mno, town ni ndogo lakini watu ni wengi mno. Thank you Malindi. We had so much fun. This was one awesome show with a great audience. Kilifi tutarudi, we will be back soon,” Mwalimu Churchill.

St. Anthony’s Malindi Choir closed the Churchill Show by gracing the stage with some gospel.

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Do you still think Malindi is dead? Think again Peaches.

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Live | Love | Laugh

Photography:  Rogim Photography & Mwalimu Churchill

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Malindi Fashion Show Slays La Malindina

Elegance, glamour and splendor filled the ambiance of La Malindina Resort in Malindi during Malindi Fashion Show previous Saturday on International Women’s Day; celebrating phenomenal women all around the world. Not to mention, La Malindina was recently reopened 3 months ago after three years of shut down.

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Aldo Menduni (left), Scarlet Were (middle), Charity Karimi a.k.a. Stella Customized(right).

Italian Owner of La Malindina, Mr. Aldo Menduni, birthed the idea of the fashion show event partnering with the talented Fashion Designer, Charity Karimi owner of Stella Customized Kenya based in Malindi to showcase her fashion designs to potential International and Local clients who attended the esteemed event. Our African Queen, Scarlet Were was the special guest that night. Scarlet Were is the former Miss Universe Kenya 2016 who broke the record of becoming the first Kenyan and only African to make it to a top 6 placement out of 86 beauty queens at the Miss Universe Competition.

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On entrance, a hostess welcomed us with a white rose walking on red carpet floor heading for a welcoming photo session as the Photographer dutifully took photos. Stella Customized background banner and red carpet floor themed the venue of the fashion show. Both ladies and gentlemen were dressed impeccably. Majority of the guests who attended the event that night wore Stella’s elegant unique designs making them stand out from the crowd.

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Guests took their seats in the stunning restaurant ready for the fashion show to begin. A few minutes later, the tables were full as waiters were bustling serving delicious dinner. The murmur of conversation throughout the venue was distinctively Italian and English.

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Heliana Vogli; Italian lady who is one of Stella’s biggest client and supporter, was the MC of the event. She opened the welcoming speech honoring International Women’s Day.

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Young gorgeous models marvelously took over the runway strutting around the swimming pool. They all walked so confidently with so much elegance giving justice to Stella Customized classy designs.

First Round was showcasing Afro-beaded accessories from Vera’s designs. Chic and retro!

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Second Round showcased Stella Customized fabulous casual wear with Vera’s accessories.

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Third round showcased Stella Customized dazzling beach wear.

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Forth Round showcased Stella Customized elegant evening wear.

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Finally, the night’s showstopper Scarlet Were; Miss Universe Kenya 2016 made a special appearance on stage.

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Scarlet had her long black hair tied up in a ponytail sweeping back to her waist, glowing in flawless makeup, and dressed exquisitely in Stella Customized elegant shimmery low back dress that had a thigh high side slit and accessorized with a necklace piece from Vera’s accessories collection. She effortlessly walked through the stage leading the runway like the African Queen she is as the rest of the models followed her lead.

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Guests were amused by her presence as photographers snapped her pics like paparazzi. Scarlet gave a touching speech to close the Malindi Fashion Show that explained her crown of valor. The message she sent was to break stereotypes of objectifying beauty queens against lecherous gazes on runways especially. Bravely opening up about her background as an orphan, challenges in her journey to top 6 of 86 position in Miss Universe Kenya. She added that Kenya does not have any financial advantage it was through her own financial effort that she succeeded. Also, she talked about how she started her Shades of Life Foundation and since Malindi is sadly known to be a drug  and prostitution avenue, she would want to use her platform to raise awareness against drug abuse especially among youths and empower young girls by raising awareness against prostitution and mentor them to divert attention from ill-fated social behaviors.

“My brother unfortunately became hooked to drugs and the damages completely changed his life. Which is why I started the Shades of Life Foundation to raise awareness against drug abuse among youth. Also, I own a lipstick line called Scarlet Lipstick Collection which Contributes to the Shades of Life Foundation with every purchase of lipstick.”

Charity Karimi – Stella Customized

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Charity Karimi a.k.a. Stella Customized Kenya is an inspiring fashion designer in Malindi originally from Embu. Charity was born below poverty hence learning tailoring at 12 years old as a survival talent. In 2012 she launched her cloth line named after her daughter Stella; Stella Customized. Malindi was best choice for her ever since she moved for work 14 years ago and for being a serene town best for creating. Scarlet and Charity happened to share a multitude of things including style and empowering trait. For that reason, she chose Scarlet to be her brand ambassador.

Through online and offline marketing she has managed to get both Local and International clients. Moreover, she has taken part in many fashion runway events in Kenya including Swahili Fashion Week among others.

Charity not only gives free fashion and design training to a handful of young girls but also  hires young models for photo-shoots and runways to empower them. Adding to her passion to encourage women and empower young women to embrace their beauty and use their beauty for a good cause. Moreover, as a business woman in the tourist sector, Charity offers sustainable fashion using her patch works as statement pieces to avoid littering. Also, she collaborates with women from the beach.

Today, Stella Customized has recognition that has exceeded her expectations. Soon, she will be attending Botswana Fashion Between Borders.

Charity has a message to young girls,

“You always have a choice. Set your goals, have faith and be ambitious. Look at the bigger picture. Success will come when you are determined to win. Do not give into temptations or let poverty define you.”

To revive Malindi, Charity reckoned that readily available resources in Malindi need to be properly utilized by youth and investors in Kilifi County who need to work collaboratively to uplift the tourism in Malindi.

In a nutshell, everything about the Malindi Fashion Show was divine. Aldo commended the number of attendees at Malindi Fashion Show – 70 guests – as a big turn out for Malindi.

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Photo Credits: Rogim Photography.

Live|Love|Slay

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The 4th Malindi Masaala Koroga Competition – Food Fiesta!

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The 4th episode of Malindi Masaala Koroga Competition took place on Saturday, 2nd of March 2019 at Driftwood Beach Club in Malindi. The event is a food festival filled with vibrant food colors, savory spices scents, and magical tastes, held after every 3 months in Kilifi County teamed up by Kilifi Tourism Investors.

 

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Mr. Edward Aniere (Eddie) and his wife Selma Mawani Aniere are the owners of Barefoot Beach Camp who coordinate Malindi Masaala. Their main objective is to revive toursim in Malindi targeting to make Kilifi County as an ideal tourism destination, by bringing both Local and International Tourists and Investors together in the Kenyan Coast to celebrate food. The winner then takes the next episode of Malindi Masaala to their venue. Keep reading to know who won the competition for this episode!

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Judges of the Malindi Masaala Koroga Competition 4th Episode

Eight teams participated including my favorite team; Tamu Fusion Restaurant from Watamu. Including Barefoot Beach Camp, Driftwood Beach Club, 7 to 7 Supermarket, Dental Art Center, Ocean Beach Resort & Spa, Surahi Restaurant and Malindi Sea Fishing Club. Of course, I attended to give my full support to my team. Just like Chef Diego and Tamu Restaurant as a whole, it was also my first time to attend and I have to commend Barefoot Beach Camp Coordinators Eddie & Selma for a great turn out!

 

 

Malindi Masaala Koroga competition commenced at 9:00 a.m. at the Driftwood’s pool venue. All chefs set their tables with their Company banners and flyers near the bar facing the swimming pool and the sea, fully prepared with their kitchen equipments; spices, vegetables, meat, cutlery and jikos ready to koroga! They each made two different curries as instructed; vegetable and non-vegetable curry.

 

It was an exciting moment for the chefs. I’ve never seen cooking look so fun!  So much vibrant food colors, a mixture of different spices scents took over the air and music to turn it up. You could get famished by just walking into the food arena. Most importantly, chefs put extra effort in presentation, hygiene and ensuring that the food was served hot from the jiko.

Barefoot Beach Camp prepared delicious fish with octopus and coconut patagonia curry.

 

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Dental Art Centre  prepared vegetable and spicy chicken curry.

 

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Driftwood Beach Club prepared spicy beef  karoga and mushrooms & garden peas masala curry.

 

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Malindi Sea Fishing Club prepared Prawn Curry, Sweet Potato, Lentil and Spinach Curry.

 

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Ocean Beach Resort & Spa also prepared a special vegetable and spicy chicken curry.

 

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7 to 7 Supermarket prepared an Indian delicacy Dhahi Dhum Murg made with boneless chicken and kele ki sabzi (ripe banana). The ripe banana was delish. Their presentation was spectacular, followed by their foiled fish that was finger-licking!

 

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Surahi Restaurant prepared Chicken Palak and Paneer Tikka Masaala.

 

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Tamu Fusion Restaurant prepared Veg Thai curry noodles and pumpkin & mango cream with coconut milk and prawns dipped in red curry. Foodgasmic!

 

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Judges moved to each table to taste each of the contestant’s food before they set their food at the buffet table for guests to get the privilege of tasting their     mouthwatering curries passionately prepared by the chefs at a cost of kshs. 500/- per person.

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Surprisingly, the queue was impressively long. It was a food fiesta that people got to enjoy with drinks, music and socializing!

 

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Media press was also present for the event and so many different people came to support their teams. Eddie concurred that it was indeed the biggest Malindi Masaala Koroga Competition!

Guess who the winner of the competition was? *drum rolls* Barefoot Beach Camp!

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2nd position was won by Surahi Restaurant.

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3rd position was won by Ocean Beach Resort & Spa.

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A certificate of participation was awarded to each participant as a token of appreciation.

The winner of the competition, Eddie of Barefoot Beach Camp, nominated Ocean Beach Resort & Spa as the next venue of the 5th Malindi Masaala episode (the date is yet to be confirmed).

I am surely looking forward to attend the next episode of Malindi Masaala. Do not miss out! If you have a business in the Kenyan Coast you’d like to promote, Malindi Masaala is the event for you!

Ps: Malindi is not dead people! It is very much alive and kicking! Let’s rock it! Cheers!

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Live| Love | Eat

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Falconry Of Kenya, Malindi – What A Thrill!

Hey Peaches, welcome back to my blog. Today, we are going to the Falconry of Kenya in Malindi. The Falconry of Kenya is a private sanctuary in Malindi for birds and reptiles. Serves as a tourist center to promote awareness and conservation so that people can learn about different species. Moreover, it provides habitat and feeding programs for their wildlife.

Jay was in Malindi accompanied by her Mom, Caroline. The falconry sounded like a great plan out of the ordinary to share new experiences together.

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We drove down following google maps direction which led us on the doorstep of the falconry signaled by the door entrance sign without any hustle. We alighted the car and made our way in. 

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On entrance, there were four old Italian men chilling at a round table drinking beer.

To our disappointment though, the place looked run down which made us skeptical  about it being open *fingers crossed*  Luckily, the receptiontionist was present who also happened to be the tour guide.

The entrance fee is kshs. 200/- each for the tour. After paying the guide, our tour commenced.

Welcoming us into the sanctuary, was a giant old Aldabra tortoise over 100 years originating from Seychelles.

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Aldabra giant tortoise is actually one of the largest tortoises in the world and can reach upto 550 pounds and ages to 150 years old. Conserved to prevent it from going extinct. Our guide informed us that it is vegetarian can eat about 20 bananas and 40 kilos of grass on average per day.

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Next, he led us to an extraordinary adventure of a hugging eagle. Our guide gave each of us a huge hard skinned glove that had a cube of meat which attracted the eagle to my arm in fast flight and landed on its sharp claws. I could feel the weight when it landed on my arm and the strong wind swooshed by its huge strong wing feathers. We did that with the falcon too which was heavier! It was a thrilling experience!

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A few steps forward, was a line of net cages which had different snakes species. Some venomous, a few not.

Among the snakes we saw were the venomous Black Mamba, Puff Adder, African Rocky Python,  and Black Necked Spitting Cobra.

 

 

They were NOT pleasing to my eyes. But I can say the green mamba’s neon green skin is so attractive.

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Their eyes and hissing sound of tongue raised every single hair in my body. My snake phobia is too real.

To make it worse, our guide uncaged a small grey snake holding it on his hand and daring each of us to hold it. Caroline was brave enough but Jay and I could not hack that.

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I literally just touched the snake with the tip of my finger and it sent chills down my spine making me scream with fear. Welp!

Biokenafrica – snake conservation – recently documented, “A snake is an animal, it is not a shetani, it is not a serpent and we have to put all that away. If you find it in your house, give it space to run away.”

The scariest snake was the deadly python and the weirdest thing to see was python poop. 

 

 

Other reptiles we saw were monitor lizards, baby tortoises conserved in their pen and crocodiles.

 

 

Did you know that crocodile meat is tasty? 😋 Tastes like chicken and fish. Yes, I have to admit, I had a bite of crocodile meat in Watamu a few months ago. Additionally, it is good for your heart, lungs, blood circulation and it is known to cure asthma and coughing problems and their fat is rich in skin-healing/softening ingredients that are used to treat eczema and psoriasis.

Lastly, we explored a handful species of birds. Generally, birds are known to be biological controls, balancing the food chain.

We learned through our guide that there are more than 200 owl species in the world. In Kenya, however, we have approximately 17 species of owls; we saw a handful. The owls are nocturnal creatures with superb eyesight and huge ears framing their heads into disk-like shape. Their ears have strong hearing capabilities designed for hunting at night.

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These Barn Owls were lit! They swing their bodies like they’re humming themselves lullabies. We played Tetema bongo song by Diamond and their dance swing rhymed with it, adding a wink to it.

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Spotted Eagle Owls

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African Wood Owl

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Verreaux Eagle Owl are unique with pink eyelids

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White-faced Scops Owls. Camouflages itself against tree trunks. Although tiny, they’re very aggressive

Sadly in most cultures, especially our African cultures just like snakes, owls are superstitiously subjected as a sign of bad omens. European cultures too believe that the barn owls are ghostly because they are mostly seen in graveyards.

Interestingly, a single owl can consume 1,000 mice a year, hence they can be used as natural rodent controls in farming to replace toxic rodenticides and other harmful chemicals.

Bush babies are cute and tiny with plaintive cries like babies.  The bush baby was playful hiding itself in a small pot in its cage.

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The bush baby has large round eyes for strong eyesight during night hunting as they are nocturnal. They feed on termites, fruits, rodents

What I found sad was some of the birds were tied down to small pots.  However, the guide assured us that the birds get untied for them to fly out as they always find their way back. 

 

 

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PS: the fish eagle is the most endangered bird species with a killer beak and sharp talons that can rip your soul apart. They are quite temperemental too!

Surely, it was an educational and exciting experience.

Nevertheless, The Falconry of Kenya in Malindi is an exciting way to pass time and enjoy with your friends and learn about different species of birds and reptiles. Experience an extraordinary adventure of holding either a falcon, owl, or eagle or all in turns. A snake too! *yikes* Enjoy the thrill Peaches. 

Live| Love | Laugh

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Lavish and Luxe: Fashion High Tea 2019

Fabulous!

The Island Guru

It’s mid week and I’m here still recovering from the fashion fusion that went down last weekend. The hottest fashion event in Nairobi happened and Fashion High Tea 2019 was nothing but all lavish and glamour. After so many years of stalking and dreaming of this event, I finally had a chance to be part of this gracious scenario and I can confirm that it is ‘the most anticipated fashion event in Nairobi’.

Photo by Dan Kiptoo @99thsense

Fashion High Tea is an annual high fashion event hosted by Zen Garden to celebrate the fashion industry in Kenya. Zen Garden lives up to its name and brings together the zen in a fashion scene that is graced by the popular stylish personas in the city. Now I understand all the fashion hype that goes on in Nairobi every February.

Ruena Kiarie feeling her style

I mean if we are going…

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Karibuni Villas Getaway – Malindi, Kenya

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KARIBUNI is Swahili name for ”Welcome All” in English.

LOCATION

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Karibuni Villas is a classic beachfront villa in Mambrui consisting of 150 private beach villas and a resort which can accommodate about 200 guests; approximately 12 KM North of Malindi town (20 minutes drive) past Sabaki bridge near oldest Mambrui Village. You can easily access the villa by car/ taxi/ shuttle/ tuktuk from Malindi Town. Moreover, Karibuni Villas provides shuttle services for guests starting from a minimum of  5 guests KES 600/- each or 10 guests KES 300/- each. If you need a quiet and peaceful place to stay away from the city hubbub, Karibuni Villas is for you!

ARRIVAL AND CHECK-IN

Karibuni Villas was the perfect getaway for me last week, hence, I am honored to give you an insider’s peek of the spectacular villa.

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Entrance to the Villa after a tight security pass at the main gate, Karibuni Villas has a grand compound with ample and secure parking space, a roundabout leading to the reception with an attractive fountain that is mounted on its perfectly trimmed star-shaped lush grass and sand filling the spaces. Eight country flags (Kenya included) are aligned at the entrance of the villa. A Concierge carried my luggage while ushering me into the villa’s opulent 24-hour Reception for my 12:00 p.m. check-in (check-in is at 12:00 p.m. and check-out at 10:00 a.m.).

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The high ceiling and lobby space creates a welcoming atmosphere mirroring the true meaning of the Villa’s name, KARIBUNI, as it boasts a Maasai statute whereas a plush period sitting area is popped by quality white furnishings and Maasai wall paintings appreciating African culture.

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The receptionist warmly welcomed me as he handed over to me my villa key with full information of the available facilities and activities time & location. Excitedly, I strolled to the large outdoor swimming pool centered between Chui and Tembo restaurant as directed by the receptionist since it is visible from the reception lobby.

SWIMMING POOL AREA

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That has got to be the main attraction of Karibuni Villas because of its unique creative style with two pairs of enormous white elephant tusks similar to the famous aluminum elephant tusks boasted in Moi Avenue of Mombasa town which is one of the town’s attractive landmarks. It intrigues a sense of being in my hometown, Mombasa, as the elephant tusks were initially commissioned to commemorate the visit of Queen Elizabeth in 1956 when Kenya was still part of the British Empire!

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I would recommend that you come and have a dip into their refreshingly clean swimming pool as you get the feeling of Mombasa right here in Karibuni Villas for amazing pictures of their incredible elephant tusks. Also, to confuse people a little in this hideout.

TEMBO RESTAURANT

Karibuni009Karibuni010Right ahead of the stunning swimming pool, is a huge amphitheater that leads you directly to Tembo Restaurant of which is also marked by two gorgeous white elephant tusks on its entrance. The creativity of the restaurant’s name, Tembo, is quite impressive as Tembo Swahili meaning of elephant tusks is synonymous to alcohol.  Moreover, Tembo restaurant bar is designed to serve a range of drinks and beverages; both alcoholic and non-alcoholic served with potato/cassava crisps. Also, tea is served in here  everyday at 5:00 p.m. with snacks.

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Tembo restaurant next to the large amphitheater.

In addition, this restaurant offers A LA CARTE menu to all guests the opportunity to choose from a menu of meat cooked on the grill and the best of the Indian Ocean can offer: lobsters, crabs and other crustaceans presented in choreographic preparations.

Nevertheless, guests can lounge in the spacious restaurant completed with high-quality white furnishings and a flat screen TV to kick back and relax while watching your favorite series and movies. Bookworms are not discriminated either as there’s a small book shelf strategically placed next to the TV with a wide selection of novels.

CHUI RESTAURANT

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Stunning Cheetah painting representing Chui Restaurant. Chui is Swahili name for Cheetah. The wall painting is located between the ladies and gents toilets in the restaurant.

Chui restaurant is located on the left side of the pool.

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The Chui Restaurant’s buffet services will tempt you with Italian & exotic specialties with a wide selection of mouth-watering appetizers, good Italian and international dishes, meat and fish accompanied by rich side dishes of fresh vegetables and other specialties. Desserts include cakes, fresh vegetables and tropical fruits such as papaya, mango, pineapple, cakes, espresso or tea and a wide range of fine Italian and South African wines. Once a week special Swahili dinner such as samosas, mchicha, chapatis, ugali and many other specialties. KARIBUNI!

Amazingly, Chui Restaurant is very spacious in that you can host wedding lunches or events as it can accommodate a lot of people. I love how the white furnishings and leaves décor pops the restaurant.

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FOOD

Among the meals that I ate are healthy portions of fish sauce pasta & pineapple juice, chips & fish, ugali with chicken & kachumbari and rice with fish (tomato curry on the side), as I still try more meals; a taste of different cuisines. Prices are affordable ranging from KES 500/- to 3000/-

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Fish-sauce pasta with pineapple juice

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Chips and fish

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Ugali and 1/4 chicken

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Rice and fish + tomato curry

RESORT

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Karibuni Villas Resort’s guest rooms are each equipped with a functioning A/C & fan – NEEDS! – a flat screen TV with satellite reception, a mini fridge to store your refreshments, kettle complete with a double bed, spacious closets an en-suite bathroom. It’s a decent size for a couple/friends/bachelor/bachelorette. The resort rates are pocket-friendly with single guest rooms ranging from KES 4,000/- to 6,000/- and double KES 7,000/- to 11,000/- depending on the meal plan you choose. Laundry services are provided at an additional cost.

Furthermore, some rooms are equipped with a chilling area.

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BEACH VILLAS

The beach villas consist of one or two bedrooms of your choice, a bathroom and a comfortably, furnished living room which is combined with a kitchen corner. Self-catering facilities are provided in the kitchen corner complete with cooking utensils and crockery at affordable rates; KES 6,000/- for a one bedroom and KES 8,000/- for a two bedroom. Laundry services are provided at an additional cost.

FACILITIES

Boutique: There is a small boutique with a selection of high quality handmade African clothes, sandals and accessories which many guests buy as souvenirs.

One of the most unique facilities offered at Karibuni Villas, is a prayer room (near the tennis court) readily availed for us Muslims to help us not to miss any of our Fardh (compulsory) prayers and read Qur’an.

Outdoor Facilities: In addition, Karibuni Villas outdoor activities is also included in your stay; Boccia game, Tennis Court, and a fully equipped & functioning gym to maintain that sexy summer body.

More so, the open space with good ventilation and fans in the gym room despite the hot outdoor temperatures attracted me to work out!

Needless to say, it is one of Karibuni Villas strategies to get younger people to come and enjoy their all-inclusive outdoor facilities.

ACTIVITIES

For Karibuni Villas, they utilize their Pizzeria by hosting Pizza night every Sundays from 8:30 p.m. That Sunday night, I witnessed their talented chefs in the open kitchen pizzeria making a wide assortments of pizzas from scratch from their eco-friendly oven served hot! It was yummilicious!!!!!!!

Tuesdays and Wednesdays, Karibuni Villas utilize their amphitheater space to host movie night and parties respectively.

Sea and Land excursions are also offered at Karibuni Villas on booking. Get adventurous and feed your eyes and soul with divine views of the Kenyan Coast!

Not to mention, valentines day (yesterday) was a ball. After a delicious buffet dinner, we watched Italian guests acting drama scenes and dancing at the amphitheater and of course, we joined the fun!

BEACH

Karibuni Villas beach has a stunning private beach carpeted with sparkly brown sand dunes and blessed with clear blue water, secure from beach boys. Grab yourself a book or a relaxing playlist as you peacefully chill in their sunbeds under a makuti shade attaining full tranquillity!

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To be honest, Karibuni Villas is a great choice for families or groups of friends wishing to enjoy beach holidays. Also, perfect for weddings, Organization/club meetings, parties e.t.c. simply because Karibuni Villas offers the best space, atmosphere and facilities.

Contact +254724215418 for bookings.

KARIBUNI!

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Tamu Beach & Fusion Restaurant – Let’s Surf and Turf!

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Tamu Restaurant in Watamu, was birthed by Italian entrepreneur Roberto Lenzi who is also the owner of Crystal Bay, 7 Islands Resort and the beach bar restaurant Papa Remo in Watamu. Tamu restaurant beach club is perfectly located on the most beautiful serene beach of Watamu. The name Tamu is derived from Swahili language meaning Sweet; I concur!

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“We decided to keep that name because we would love people to experience a sweet time as our customers. It’s an invitation to live a moment of pleasure-seeking and of beauty for the senses, not only for the food.” ~ Cecilia, Manager at Tamu Restaurant.

Tamu’s contemporary and cutting-edge style offers a classy and romantic ambience achieved by dim lights, slow classic music, natural wood and sleek white furniture which contrasts with the azure & green color of the sky horizon and of the Indian Ocean.  Moreover, its discreet location makes the restaurant a preferred Celebration and Special Occasion venue like birthdays and weddings.

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What makes Tamu restaurant different from others in Watamu, is their bone fide creative culinary proposal of fusion cuisine. Technically, the fusion cuisine is an assortment of Mediterranean cuisines starting from Africa, embracing China, Japan, passing through Hawaii, to return to their origins, in the Mediterranean sea and to Italy. As a result, a variety of fresh meals, using the local food products to get an eclectic, intercultural wanderlusting experience to customers! Also, to promote the local food business.

The Head Chef, Diego, is the mastermind behind the aphrodisiac fusion cuisine.

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Chef Diego professionally grew in Milan, and has worked as a food consultant globally which makes him a connoisseur of food; a food alchemist. To Diego, food has been a passion to him since he was a child inspired by his mother’s cooking.

“I like to think that a chef is like a senses alchemist that can make people feel good” says Diego Tosi.

According to Cecilia (Tamu’s Manager), Diego developed a very personal taste in the plates composition, that brings them into his preparations; a combination of his love for travels, people and the cultural melting pop. After a long experience in events, catering and working as executive chef in Milan, he was chosen by the entrepreneur Roberto Lenzi for Tamu, with the purpose of creating a creative and cosmopolitan cuisine experience in Watamu.

Cecilia also owns a Catering in Milan, Italy, which makes her the perfect Manager for Tamu Restaurant due to her expertise. What a strong team I must say!

My Tamu Experience

With special thanks to Roberto Lenzi, Cecilia and Diego, I had the pleasure of testing one of their fusion cuisines.

Tamu’s hot and cold mezze menu offers a variety of starters to kick start your appetite. A fine range of drinks and foods to suit all sorts of palates.

“Our proposal is enriched by a long list of international cocktail, both alcoholic and not, a good wine list, most of all from Italy (Casale del Giglio) and of course the cocktail drinks and shakes.” ~ Cecilia.

The fusion fare mezze included:

Starters

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Truffle Crostini, Tomatoes Brushetta, Hummus, Fried Dumplings (Gnocco Fritto) and cucumber with spicy mayo.

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Tropical Cocktail. Tamu has the best cocktails in town!

Main Meal

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Octopus Carpaccio, Zucchini Crudites, Tapenade of sun dried tomatoes, citronette, and fresh rocket cream in healthy portions. Exotic sashimi of coral grouper, with leche de tigre with mango,maracuja, and fleur de lis flowers. Black rice uramaki with crab salad, cucumber, avocado, green curry paste and cashew nuts grain. Gyoza Japanese Ravioli with white fish and ginger with teriyaki sauce and wasabi sesame seeds.

PS: The Wasabi was Ho-Ho-HOootttTT!

Desserts

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1. Pistachio chocolate salami and salted caramel ice-cream. 2. Marinated pineapple with quenelle of vanilla, ginger and cinnamon ice-cream, crumble biscuit, amaretti and fresh mint. 3. Maracuja sorbet basil, ginger caviar and drops of liquorice.

To my delight, the food was mouth-watering. Starting from starters to dessert, including their tropical cocktail. My taste buds were instantly aroused by their desserts which were oh! so foodgasmic, melting in my mouth. Needless to say, each dessert had its own magic! You must try one at least!

So, Peaches, my clumsy self tried using chopsticks for the first time to blend into the Japanese culture, but food went south, literally!

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Diego, however, tried his luck of giving me a mini tutorial on how to hold chopsticks but as his student, I failed terribly.

Regardless, I congratulate myself for finally getting some food in my mouth using the chopsticks.  Shortly after the chopsticks hustle, I switched to my fork and knife eating like a proper adult. Grazie for the chopsticks tutorial Diego!

Tamu therefore will forever be memorable to me!

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Cecilia, Tamu’s Manager (right) and Eunice, Tamu’s waitress (left)

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Diego, Tamu’s Head Chef (left), Me (middle), Cecilia (right)

I would like to commend the whole Tamu team for a truly great dining experience; exquisite food quality, outstanding services and warm hospitality. The team conveys the grandeur and glory of the restaurant perfectly.

SURF AND TURF

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Surf and Turf is a night grill on Tamu beach, every Saturdays from 6:30 p.m with music, and specialty cocktails. In Watamu, surfing and kite surfing are popular watersports and since there is a large European community, Surf and Turf is perfect for Aperetifs! Not to mention, JC Kitehouse is the best Kitesurfing School in town so expect the Kite Champions to be representing at Surf and Turf.

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The “Surf and Turf” word expression comes from Los Angeles in the 70s and symbolizes the typical mixed plate of the wealthy American middle class. The original one, the “classic” one, is composed by lobster tail and beef fillet. So why not combine a little bit of Californian surfin’ spirit with the magnificent local fish and meat?” Exclaims Cecilia.

Tamu’s fusion plate comes with beef fillet, jumbo prawns, pork belly and buffalo chicken wings. They also offer the traditional Surf and Turf plate with lobster and beef fillet.

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Tamu’s Surf and Turf setting has that Hawaiian theme with JC Kitehouse kiteboard and leis of plumeria flowers. The vibrant colors of the flowers pops the place giving it a tropical paradisiacal Hawaiian look and beats that gets you on a hula groove.

I would definitely recommend Tamu restaurant for those looking for pleasant moments  that will leave a mark in your taste buds and fun too! Aloha!

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