September Getaways in India

While we are busy scanning the globe for a perfect vacation spot to ease our overly worked up nerves, we happen to ungraciously miss our own country, crammed with unique and stunningly picturesque spots, which are not only super easy to get to, but are very easy on the pocket!

So, for the month of September, we are giving you a list of desi spots you can pack your bags and head to…

  1. Lachen, Sikkim.
    lachen
    Image Source: https://goo.gl/bOH7GM
    This little town sitting in the lap of nature, has recently been opened to tourists and has a lot to offer, and it almost entirely unexplored. Sate your adventurous streak with the challenging trekking tracks or nurture your spiritual side with a trip to the ancient Lachen Monastery, sitting atop the city. An ideal getaway with friends, family or solo!

  2. Coonoor, Tamil Nadu
    coonoor
    Image Source: https://goo.gl/i4cZ6g
    A less populated and relatively quiet hill station overlooking the Nilgiris, Coonoor offers a wide variety of attractions, with its fantastic heritage hotels and guesthouses to the age old Sim’s Park, established in 1874, offering an array of eye pleasing plants and shrubs from all over the world and Dolphin’s Nose, from where you can glimpse an astonishing panoramic view of the city, among many others. Set off to this green haven for a calm and blissful break.

  3. Bundi, Rajasthan
    bundi
    Image Source: https://goo.gl/YGQUj3
    Time travel was never so easy with this fantastical city that has been able to maintain its age old charm and aura. Bundi served as a battleground between the English and Rajputs for scores of years and the scars of battle are as fresh as can be. With its soaring castles and narrow roads bustling with colour and life, Bundi is the perfect place to revisit history while not being pelted with vehicles honking or tourists pushing on about you!

  4. Khandala, Maharashtra
    khandala

    Image Source: https://goo.gl/xToI3E
    Monsoons haven’t been too generous? Rush off to Khandala and enjoy the gorgeous rains in this absolutely captivating hill station. With an abundance of sightseeing points, you will never have a dull moment here. Add the twin city of Lonavala to your itinerary to make your vacation a little more adventurous and memorable!

  5. Kovalam, Kerala
    kovalam
    Image Source: https://goo.gl/zdBNy6
    With three breathtaking crescent beaches, Kovalam has developed from a quiet fishing village to Kerala’s most developed resorts. The most sought after spot is the Lighthouse Beach which looks like it’s right out of a postcard! You can enjoy surfing on the dazzling waters here and take a few yoga sessions to energise your body and soul.

  6. Malvan, Maharashtra
    Sindhudurg_Fort_Malvan
    Image Source: https://goo.gl/NWq4Kb
    One of the most intact and tourist free beaches of the state, Malavan offers a wealth of scenic beauty as well as being a paradise for foodies, with its absolutely delicious Malavani cuisine ubiquitously found, with scatterings of every other cuisine that you would like to try with the magical addition of fresh sea food. Head off, for a calm and indulgent getaway.

  7. Gokarna, Karnataka
    gokarna
    Image Source: https://goo.gl/Kh1yLW
    Gokarna is the embodiment of lazy Sundays, where you can take a walk in the stunning scenic beauty of the place or laze around on the beaches with very few people around you. Gokarna is also populated with a large number of beautifully architectured temples, with signature South Asian carvings and sculptures which serve as a huge attraction to visitors and locals alike.

With these impeccable destinations to explore, would you rather still take a trip abroad?

Okay… enough with the reading, get up and packing for your super fun trip!

What goes into a bottle of perfume?

When it comes to perfumes, you will never run out of choices. There are so many popular brands, offering so many glorious scents in oh-so beautiful bottles. If we asked you to name some of the well known perfume brands, we doubt you would have a problem. However if we asked you to list out some of the most common fragrance types, well, it may not be that easy. Unless you keep reading on!

Perfumes can be categorized into the following fragrance types, depending on the ingredients used and the resulting smell:

Floral: These perfumes are created using one or more types of flowers. They can either be strong or light, depending on the type of flower(s) used and the concentration. The most commonly used flowers include rose, jasmine, lavender, and lilies.

Perfume Suggestion: Calvin Klein Sheer Beauty http://bit.ly/1JeulUZ

purple-flower-1378227891t6B

Image Source: https://goo.gl/rjkwUG

Oriental: The perfect choice for those who prefer strong and bold scents. Made of ingredients such as musk, vanilla, cloves and cinnamon, Oriental perfumes exude a slightly spicy, warm and exotic fragrance.

Perfume Suggestion: Burberry The Beat for Women http://bit.ly/1N5ih94

warm-vanilla-musk

Image Source: http://goo.gl/NgTu19

Green: This fragrance is all about the outdoors! It represents everything fresh, cool and liberating. Main ingredients include grass and leaves, which are combined with other green note elements like pines, herbs and junipers.

Perfume Suggestion: Elizabeth Arden Green Tea Scent http://bit.ly/1Jey056

7676-green-grass-leaves

Image Source: https://goo.gl/KeU9OU

Oceanic: If you are an ocean-lover, these fragrances are meant for you. They capture the essence of the sea with their clean, fresh and uncomplicated scent. They also have a slight hint of citrus and spice.

Perfume Suggestion: Davidoff Cool Water http://bit.ly/1JVB9FC

lemon-water05

Image Source: https://goo.gl/2LJMMm

Chypre: The Chypre category is dedicated to perfumes that capture a very earthy-mossy aroma. To add to their depth, they also have hints of oak, patchouli and citrus. Perfumes in this category are often described as classy, mature and sophisticated scents.

Perfume Suggestion: Gucci Rush 2 http://bit.ly/1MpAez6

roots_trees_textures_path_wood_earth_55940_3840x2400

Image Source: https://goo.gl/gEHhGK

Fougere: A category that mostly contains men’s perfumes due to its comparatively strong notes. Fougere means fern in French, and all the scents in this category are made from a mix of mossy ferns and fresh herbs. Most fougere perfumes exude a sophisticated, yet modern style.

Perfume Suggestion: Calvin Klein Eternity Men http://bit.ly/1J5YP9J

Mousse

Image Source: https://goo.gl/ioYX3C

Citrus: The freshest of all scents, citrus fragrances are derived from fruits such as lemon, tangerine and lime. Citrus perfumes release a sweet, tangy aroma that immediately lifts your spirits and boosts your energy levels.

Perfume Suggestion: CK One Summer http://bit.ly/1IK1nJ2

Citrus-Fruits1

Image Source: https://goo.gl/7AJclJ

The Difference between Red Wine and White Wine

Yes, they are two distinct colours, but ever wondered why? Also is the colour the only differentiator? Hmmm… turns out there is more to that alluring glass of wine than you may have thought. But no worries, it’s never too late to learn something new. Just keep reading and you shall be a Wine Guru in no time.

white-and-red-wine-glasses

Wine is a highly popular alcoholic drink that is made by fermenting grapes. Red wine is produced using dark grapes which either have a deep red or blue tint, making them look almost black. White wine uses light skinned grapes that can be green, yellow or a mix of both. Often, white wine is also produced using just the clear juice from dark grapes.

When making red wine, the skin, stem and seeds of the dark grapes are left in the juice.  During fermentation, the pigments and tannins from them seep out, adding colour and complexity to the wine. Tannins are compounds found in grapes. They provide the astringent taste in red wines and also help age the red wine longer as compared to white wines; due to their preservation properties. Tannins are also responsible for preventing the oxidation of red wines while they age.

Wine-Wallpaper_9

White wines are made using only the juice from light or dark skinned grapes. The skin, stem and seeds are completely removed after extracting the juice. White wines don’t have any strong colour because of the lack of pigments in light skinned grapes. If made using dark grapes, the pulp and skin are completely removed, preventing the pigments from reaching the juice. Tannin content in white wines is much lower than red as it does not use the skin or other parts of the grape where Tannins are found.

vino-beloe-bokal-butylka

Red wines are often described as being complex with very sharp and rich flavours while white wines offer a much lighter touch to the palette. When deciding on which wine to have with a meal, we suggest you pick red if your dish has strong flavours, otherwise white would work well. However in the end it really depends on what you find most suitable.

So there you have it, a glass full of wine knowledge! Be nice and share it with others.

For a large collection of Red and White Wines at great prices, check out www.bengalurudutyfree.in

The Health Benefits of Alcohol

Alcohol having health benefits! Not something we hear often is it?  However it is true. If consumed in moderate amounts, alcohol can prove to be highly beneficial for our health. When we say moderate amounts, it means on average one drink per day for women and two drinks per day for men. Exercising this limit is important in ensuring that you benefit from the good of alcohol instead of the bad.

So what exactly is the good we are talking about? Read on to find out.

It’s Heart Friendly

brandy in glass

According to studies conducted by Harvard School of Public Health, moderate consumption of alcohol can reduce the risk of heart disease by 40%. Alcohol has properties that raise the level of good cholesterol (HDL) in the body and reduce bad cholesterol (LDL), which plays a major role in protecting the heart against diseases. Moderate intake is also effective in preventing blood clotting, which helps keep arteries free of blockage and reduces the chances of heart attacks.

Lowers the Risk of Diabetes

Red Wine Pouring

A Dutch study has found that chances of Type-2 Diabetes are much lower in adults who consume alcohol moderately as compared to adults who don’t drink alcohol at all. Alcohol improves the ability of the body to breakdown glucose and convert it into energy. This brings down the level of sugar in the bloodstream, leading to a lower chance of developing Type-2 Diabetes.

Helps Prevent Dementia

Woman-Drinking-Cocktail

A study report published in the Neuropsychiatric Disease and Treatment journal shows that moderate level drinkers have a 23% less chance of developing dementia. Controlled amounts of alcohol can help in keeping the brain cells fit and strong, giving them the tolerance to handle high stress situations, without triggering cognitive impairment, Alzheimers or other types of dementia.

Fights Gallstone Formation

teq

Research studies conducted at the University of East Anglia reveal that consuming two drinks per day can reduce the risk of gallstones by one-third. Gallstones are usually made of hardened cholesterol and form in the Gall Bladder. Just like moderate alcohol consumption boosts good cholesterol in the bloodstream, it also improves the levels in the all bbladder, preventing Gallstone formation. Alcohol also helps in maintaining a healthy weight, which is important when it comes to preventing Gallstones. Being overweight usually increases the risk of developing Gallstones.

Increases the Lifespan

Toasting to their relationship.

Drinking in moderation can have a positive effect on your lifespan as per studies conducted by the Catholic University of Campobasso. Study results show that the risk of death can be 18% lower in men and women who consume alcohol in controlled amounts every day. However, it should be noted that moderation is very key, and excess amounts are not advisable.

Now you know all the positive health benefits alcohol offers. So the next time you are having a drink, do give a big “Cheers” to health!

Don’t forget to check out the large collection of alcohol at the Bengaluru Duty Free store. You can also pre-order your favourite drinks at www.bengalurudutyfree.in

 

 

TomTom sports watches are here to erase your exercise woes!

A mammoth tip for every fitness buff out there – get your hands on one of these super cool GPS sport watches from TomTom! These funky timepieces also double as your personal trainer, what with speed, distance, heart rate tracking and more! Take a look at this new line of watches from TomTom, that will have you craving for a few extra hours everyday!

TomTom Runner GPS Watch

2422784b2015710204131626
The TomTom Runner GPS is a top of the line sports watch with smart features that let you track your performance when you go for a run outdoors or on the treadmill. Sitting snugly on your wrist, the sleek and lightweight Runner lets you monitor the distance you cover, your pace, average pace, stride length, calories burnt and lap times all in real-time. What’s more is that you can use the new and improved Bluetooth Smart support to sync the TomTom Runner with additional devices, like a heart rate strap, etc. It being waterproof, the watch can also be used in light rain or a few laps underwater. You can also put it on for a late evening run as the bright backlit screen keeps you updated on your progress. Take a look at the watch on our website here.

TomTom Multi-Sport Cardio GPS Watch

2422788b201571172321724
The Multi Sport Cardio GPS from TomTom brings a revolutionary addition in fitness trackers, with its first rate in-built heart rate monitor, saving athletes the additional hassle of strapping themselves to an external monitor for precise heart rate monitoring in real time. The monitor lets you train in your prefered heart rate zone, ranging from Easy to Sprint. The snug design and firmer grip of the watch makes it extremely comfortable to put on, without it feeling sticky or moving about too much while you are on the go. This watch also tracks specifications for cyclists and swimmers, taking it a few rungs higher than the Runner which only tracks runners. Take a look at the extremely impressive sports watch on our website here.

TomTom Runner Cardio GPS Watch

2422787b201571172434895
The Runner Cardio GPS Watch from TomTom will send you looking for the 25th hour, with its exquisite rugged and tough design and in-built heart rate monitor which allows you to track your pulse while you run. The watch also gives you a real time update of the distance you cover, your pace, average pace, stride length, calories burnt and lap times. The comfortable rubber strap holds it comfortably in place, making sure it is not restricting movement in any way. It also comes with an in-built alarm and vibration alert systems to give you that extra nudge incase you fall out of your pace or reach a goal. Train with this perfect training partner and challenge your own previous records. Take a look at it on our website here.

TomTom Multi Sport GPS Watch

2422786b20157117267411
With the Multi Sport GPS Watch, TomTom straps on your wrist an excellent GPS tracker that accurately measures your exercise while you run, cycle or swim. The watch comes with a user interface and features that are so user friendly, they are almost intuitive and will have you up and running in minutes. The Multi Sport GPS is a sturdy and sharp trainer to keep you company as a pedometer when working out indoors and as a tracker measuring distance covered, speed, calories burnt etc, when working outdoors. You can also customize your tracker by setting the right size of your swimming pool, the right size of your cycling wheel etc, to get the best, most accurate results. This is as accurate as it gets. Take a look at it here.

So why wait when you can get all this packed right into a funky watch? Go to our website, get one and get set to get fit! See all our watches from TomTom here.

The Best Chocolate Festivals Around The World

A land full of chocolates is not a thing of dreams anymore. Not when you have annual festivals around the globe solely dedicated to the bliss that is chocolate. Go on and turn all your chocolate fantasies into reality. Get packing and visit the best chocolate festivals around the world.

The Chocolate Festival, London

TA378670_942long

Image Source: http://goo.gl/3bimBQ

At this popular chocolate festival, you will be greeted by stalls and stalls worth of chocolaty goodies that range from simple classics to gourmet delights. Apart from eating these treats, you will learn the art of making them through classes conducted by renowned chocolatiers. You can also get yourself a chocolate face mask therapy and attend workshops on making cocoa butter based beauty products. Live music is also a feature of the chocolate festival that you will surely enjoy. Add this chocolate festival to your bucket list for that unforgettable chocolate experience.

 

Dates: December 4-6, 2015

You can also get a bite of London from our chocolates collection at Bengaluru Duty Free: http://www.bengalurudutyfree.in/Product.aspx?ProductId=50

Chocolart, Germany

chocolart

Image Source: http://goo.gl/WT4h0i

The Germans love chocolate so it is no surprise that they are the hosts of one of the best chocolate festivals in the world. At the Chocolart Festival, visitors get to taste chocolates created by world class chocolatiers from around the globe. The entry to the festival is completely free and the varieties of chocolates are unending; this explains the large crowds always present at the festival. The festival also conducts classes on chocolate making and offers a unique chocolate massage experience.  If you are ready to completely lose yourself to chocolate, make your way to the Chocolart Festival. You won’t regret it.

Dates: December 1- 6, 2015

Get your hands on one of Germany’s favourite chocolate brands at Bengaluru Duty Free: http://www.bengalurudutyfree.in/Product.aspx?ProductId=1491

Eurochocolate, Italy

eurochocolate-sculpture

Image Source: http://goo.gl/O0gCgz

The largest chocolate festival in the world, the Eurochocolate festival takes place in the Italian city of Perugia. The best international brands of chocolates assemble at this festival. The festival boasts of everything chocolate, from cooking classes to sculpting competitions, and street side stalls that offer a continuous supply of free samples. Live music plays throughout the festival to create the perfect mood. On the last day of the festival, the Eurochocolate Awards Ceremony takes place where the best chocolatiers receive awards. Have you booked that plane ticket to Italy already?

Dates: October 16-25, 2015

Choco-late, Belgium

twee chocolade zwanen die het Choco-laté festival aankondigen

Image Source: http://goo.gl/Vn8bQb

Belgium loves chocolate and chocolate loves Belgium, and you can witness this historical love story by visiting the Choco-late Festival held in Brugge, Belgium. At the festival, visitors can take a trip through a chocolate museum (yes, that’s right), admire gorgeous chocolate art and sculptures, paint with chocolate (sadly, only for kids) and enjoy a mouthful of delicious, free chocolate samples. If you are the kinds that are not just satisfied with eating chocolates but would also love to drink it, then the chocolate beverage bar at the festival won’t disappoint you. Fall in love with chocolate all over again with a trip to Belgium’s Choco-late festival.

Dates: November 2015

Lose yourself to glorious Belgian chocolate, available at Bengaluru Duty Free: http://www.bengalurudutyfree.in/Product.aspx?ProductId=1542

Las Vegas Chocolate Festival, USA

thumb_600

Image Source: http://goo.gl/lfqxt6

Las Vegas also known as ‘Sin City; is that place on earth where life is a full blown party. Add an amazing chocolate festival to the list and there is no reason we can think of for not wanting to visit. The Las Vegas Chocolate Festival brings together the best talents in the sweet treat industry and gives visitors a chance to taste some of their oh-so delicious chocolate creations. To make it all even better there is a wide variety of wines and spirits to try along with the chocolates. Yes, this is everything you have ever been waiting for; don’t miss it for the world!

Dates: April 2016

The History of Tequila

Tequila, one of the most popular drinks of today’s times comes with a long and rich history that traces back to early Mexico, North America.

Before the times of the Spanish conquest, the native people of Mexico used to ferment the sap of plants called Agave in order to produce a drink called Pulque.  After the invasion, Spanish Conquistadors distilled Pulque to replace the brandy they had run out of. The drink produced was called Mezcal Wine and became North America’s first distilled spirit.

Mezcal Wine eventually evolved to become the Tequila we know today. Both Mezcal and Tequila are made using the heart of the Agave plant called pina. Tequila is a type of Mezcal however it is produced in a different manner.  Tequila is produced using only the Blue Agave plant while Mezcal can be produced using five different types of Agave.  Mezcal is made using pina that is baked over charcoal in a rock lined pit oven, covered with palm fibre mats and earth. Tequila on the other hand is made from pina that is steamed or baked in ovens above the ground.

The name Tequila comes from the small town of Tequila in the state of Jalisco, Mexico. The Blue Agave plant, known as the best variety to produce Tequila, flourishes in this town.

2049926-0237-atm14

Image Source: http://goo.gl/4PQZjL

In 1758, the King of Spain granted a man called Jose Antonio Cuervo the rights to cultivate a section of land with Agave plants, which then led to the first licensed commercial manufacture of Tequila. Today, Jose Antonio Cuervo is a well renowned Tequila brand that is the largest manufacturer and exporter of the drink.

Jose-Cuervo-Especial-Gold-100cls_big201451518248592

In 1858, a man named Don Cenobio Sauza visited the town of Tequila and was completely entranced by the place. He worked at the Cuervo distillery where he learned about the production behind Tequila. He also gained expertise in Agave farming. With this knowledge, he bought his own distillery and established Sauza Tequila; till date one of Jose Cuervo’s greatest competitors. Tequila made its way to the USA for the first time as an export from Sauza Tequila.

Sauza_Tequila_Gold_Big2014930192248850

Tequila did not attain importance until post 1821, when Mexico gained independence and Spanish products were hard to get. Next the Mexican revolution took place which brought about a huge wave of patriotism towards Mexican made products including Tequila.

In the USA, a prohibition was set on Tequila but this only increased the popularity of the drink, and as a result the drink was smuggled across the border. Demand for the product increased again in USA during World War II as a result of scarce supply of spirits from Europe.

With the increasing demand for the drink, the production also increased. This got the government involved in the form of setting up rules for the production of the product. In 1944, the Mexican government set strict standards that demanded any product called ‘Tequila’ be only produced in the state of Jalisco using Agave grown there. Also to maintain the highest quality of Tequila, it was made compulsory that Tequila be made using no less than 51% Agave Tequiliana Weber, variety Azul.

The rest as they say is history.

Tempted for that fiery shot of Tequila? No worries! Head right to www.bengalurudutyfree.in and pre-order from our wide collection of Tequila brands that includes the original, Jose Antonio Cuervo.