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Money Saving Tips for Your Next Holiday

Dreaming of your next holiday? Well you can still enjoy luxury without it costing you a fortune, which is why we have a few simple tips to help you make the most of your money while travelling.

Fly off-peak

High demand means higher prices. So to avoid paying the premium ticket price it’s better to travel when it’s not peak season if you can. Christmas time is a favourite time to go travelling so unless you are visiting family; it is budget wise not to travel during the holiday season. Also try to avoid school holidays, especially if you don’t have school-aged children. Did you know the day of the week also makes a difference? It is as simple leaving on a Wednesday instead of a Saturday. It’s only a small change, but it can mean savings.

Book direct and save

Do your research on various online travel agents, if something seems way too cheap than consider that there could be additional costs involved later on. Read the terms and conditions to know exactly what is included in the price. Is breakfast included, does your room have a King size bed, what about free Wifi? Does it have riverside views or does it face the courtyard and remember that prices shown are per person. While it might seem like the cheaper option, always check with the hotel you are interested in as you will find you will always get the best deal by booking direct.

Weight it down

Budget Airlines such as Jet Star and AirAsia are an excellent way to save money, especially if it’s only a shorter flight. However, much like the hotel bundles, make sure exactly what you are getting. No-frills carriers often have strict regulations in regards to carry-on luggage and any extra weight will cost you! Often cheap tickets only include cabin luggage so keep that in mind! Remember that meals are often not included in the price either so exchange some money to buy your food and drinks. If you are taking a long haul flight it is probably better to take a full service carrier as you will need more luggage.

Local MasterChef

Embrace the culture and eat like the locals, as it is often cheaper and just as tasty! From $1 noodles in Hong Kong to hidden French bistros, the food is fresh and made from local produce.

However, if local cuisine isn’t your thing, consider having lunch while you are shopping. Some cities have massive shopping malls, which have food courts that offer cuisines from all over the globe – plus you will probably be starving after a few hours of shopping so it comes in handy. Also remember to have a big breakfast at the hotel buffet and consider shopping in local supermarkets for lunch.

Currency Wars

Taking money out overseas can cost a lot in charges. Using a debit card instead of a credit card will be cheaper, however, be aware that most banks will charge you an international withdrawal fee on top of the usual commission fees. To avoid getting overcharged with bank fees, try to exchange larger sums of money at once, so that you are charged less frequently. Just be careful to store your money carefully in your hotel room safe and avoid carrying large sums of cash with you!

Also be aware of fluctuating exchange rates and check out Travelex’s Happy Hour for discounted commission fees on currency exchange.

Be ‘appy!

It’s the 21st century which means there’s a mobile application for almost anything, so why not make the most of it. Make your phone your money saving buddy and download city maps, travel guides, translators and others tips and tricks. A few of the favourite apps are Happy Hour Finder, Foursquare, and Scootmob, but make sure you check out the app store to see what else you can find as well. You can also check out websites like Groupon and LivingSocial to monitor deals around the city you are traveling too. The great thing about sites like this it that they also give you an idea of what there is to do nearby.

Now… that leaves you with more money to spend on shopping & exploring, enjoy! xx

The Origin of Santa Claus

We are quickly coming up to Christmas, and what better way to kick off the festive season than to tell a good origin story!

There are many origin stories of Santa, which seem to vary country to country. The name Santa Claus comes from the Dutch words “Sinter Klaas”, which is what they call St. Nicholas.

St Nicholas was known for his kindness and generosity – he often went out at night and took presents to the needy. His notoriety can be traced to many legends – one being “The Three Daughters”.

There were three unmarried girls who came from a respectable family, but they could not get married because their father had lost all his money and could not provide dowries for the girls. Hearing of their imminent fate of being sold off once they reached the age to marry, Nicholas secretly delivered a bag of gold to the eldest daughter. This good fortune meant she was able to go and become happily married. When the next daughter came of age, Nicholas also delivered gold to her.

According to the legend, Nicholas threw the bag through the window and it landed in the daughter’s stocking, which she had hung by the fire. Another version claims that Nicholas dropped the bag of gold down the chimney.

By the time the youngest daughter was old enough for marriage, the father was determined to discover his daughters’ benefactor. He thought that she might be given a bag of gold too, so he decided to keep watch. Nicholas arrived and was seized, and his generosity was made known to all.

Similar stories of his generosity spread, and anyone who received an unexpected gift thanked St. Nicholas.

 

How to Recover From Jet Lag

Travelling is an exciting time, you explore new places, try new foods, experience different cultures and make lifetime memories. But how can you make getting to your destination a little more comfortable? Flying has its ups and downs, so we have made a list of things you can do to avoid the dreaded jet lag.

1. Have enough sleep before you leave

Sounds simple, doesn’t it? Well, it’s not as easy as it sounds when you are excited for your holiday or worrying about packing everything, especially when you are packing for more than one. All these factors can make it tough to get a good night’s sleep, and the best thing you could you do is attempt to switch off and forget about everything for a couple of hours. Trust us; your body will thank you later. Try reading a book or watching a movie until you dose off.

2. Drink Warm Water

It might not be the most refreshing beverage you can think of on a long flight, but it has its benefits. The tip comes from ancient Indian philosophy, the same one that created yoga and meditation and can help with the headaches associated with jet lag. Plus keeping hydrated in general will help deter the symptoms related to jet lag.

3. Eat Small Meal Frequently

Your body runs better on good food, so eating small healthy meals frequently will help your body battle jet lag. Avoid ordering foods with a lot of fat, sugar or anything fried on the plane. Stock up on fruit and veggies before your flight.

4. Get Up & Walk

It might be a struggle if you have a window seat, but a stroll up and down the plane during a long flight will make you feel better. During long haul flights, your muscles will start to feel cramped so a walk will do you wonders.

5. Avoid Alcohol and Caffeine

Rest is so important when it comes to tackling jet lag & caffeine won’t help with relaxing, it will mess with your body clock and keep you up most the flight. Excessive alcohol will have a similar effect, and when you combine it with jet lag haze it can get pretty nasty!

6. Nap During The Flight

Take short naps during your trip, especially when you are traveling during the night. Napping will not only make it feel as if the flight is shorter, but it will also make you feel more refreshed when you land. Win!

7. Expose Your Self to Daylight

It might sound a little strange, but when you arrive at your new destination try to get some sun, this will help you wake up from a state of drowsiness. I will also be good for you to soak up some vitamin D after hours of being confined to an airplane.

8. Don’t Sleep at the Wrong Time

No matter how tired you are, you need to try and stay awake in your new time zone during the daylight hours. Once the sun goes down, you can call it a day but try not to wake up too early so you can recover properly. Let your body adjust to your new time zone.

Now that you have jet lag covered, there is only one thing left to do… enjoy your trip!

Safe Travels!

xx

The Fiery Cuisine of Perth

You don’t have to travel far to try some of the best spicy food in the world. Perth, Western Australia’s cosmopolitan hot spot, is filled with excellent eateries for heat-loving foodies. A recent blog post on Expedia, ‘The Spicy Food Bucket List’, shared some of the world’s spiciest destinations, including the Night Noodle Markets that come to Perth each year. The travel experts included Assured Waterside Apartments as one of the top places to stay to experience the spice. ‘Just a few minutes’ walk will bring you to Mends Street jetty,’ they write, ‘where you can catch a ferry into the heart of the city where the markets are held’

With plenty of brilliant sunshine, beautiful Kings Park just across the water and amazing local restaurants, we are truly located on a slice of paradise.

From Indian to Thai, Perth is a melting pot for unforgettable food all year around. While Southeast Asia, India, and Central America may be known for bringing the world their own magnificent takes on spicy cooking, in a city like Perth, you can get a little bit of everything. Perth is a true fusion of different cultures and their cooking styles, flavours and culinary influences. You can enjoy some of the best spicy food in the world right along the Swan River.

How about trying the delicately spicy flavours of Nepalese cuisine? Just a short walk from Assured Waterside Apartments you can enjoy Summit Nepalese Restaurant & Café. Around the corner is the elegant Thai Orchard, well known for their traditional Thai curries. You also have plenty of Indian options nearby, serving up authentic cuisine made with plenty of herbs and fiery spices. You’ll have no shortage of spicy food options when you stay at Assured Waterside Apartments.

Guest don’t just come for our stellar world cuisine of course! Perth has so much to offer. You can plan your days around enjoying the beaches, strolling through Kings Park and Botanic Garden, mountain biking, or visiting the local wineries, and then finish with a fiery meal and return to the comfort of our spacious accommodation.

Assured Waterside Apartments are a true home away from home. Enjoy fully-equipped kitchens, modern décor, cosy bedrooms, and gorgeous bathrooms, all finished with our balconies overlooking the courtyard where you can luxuriate in the warm air while you enjoy a glass of vino. Perfect for families, or just those who love to feel at home while they travel, we’re here to make sure your stay in our vibrant city is as amazing as can be.

Stay spicy! xx

Your Guide Around Perth – The Spring Edition!

Spring is finally here! We have had a chilly winter, but have no fear things are starting to warm up soon, so it’s time get out and about to experience all that Perth has to offer. New and exciting places to visit and explore are popping up all over the city.

Elizabeth Quay

This is one of Perth latest attractions and it’s still growing. If you are looking for an enjoyable date night with a view, then this is the place for you. Nestled among Elizabeth Quay are an array of unique bars and restaurants. If you are looking to dine in an exquisite heritage building overlooking the Swan River you might want to consider making a booking at the Isle of Voyage restaurant situated in the Heritage Listed Florence Hummerston kiosk. For a more casual lunch or dinner step into V Burger Bar and enjoy some delicious gourmet burgers. Don’t forget Elizabeth Quay is just a short ferry ride away from Assured Waterside Apartments.

South Perth Foreshore

Picturesque views with your Sunday stroll? With a complete view of the Perth city skyline, South Perth foreshore is the place to be, especially on a sunny Sunday. Surrounded by luxurious apartments, this is the perfect spot to make the most of the s warmer weather to come. After your stroll why not check out some of the fashion boutiques around South Perth and have a waffle at Gelare after.

Fremantle markets

Enjoy the vibrant atmosphere that Fremantle has to offer by exploring the markets and the cappuccino strip. If you’re a coffee lover, you need to try some of the gourmet coffee beans and blends for sale at the markets. The famous Fremantle cappuccino strip is a must visit, so why not take a stroll and stop at one of the many bars, restaurants’ and cafes. Hint for all you beer lovers: The Monk Brewery Kitchen located on South Terrace is definitely worth a visit for a large selection of craft beers and bar food.

Swan Festival of Lights

Taking place from 28th to 30th October at Elizabeth Quay this festival has been a popular event in Perth since 2008 and coincides with the Indian festival of lights called Deepavali. This year’s event is sure to impress with a broad range of delicious street food, international music, arts, entertainment, and dance.

Kings Park Festival

Offering some of the best views of the City, Kings Park is a part of Perth History. You can enjoy this beautiful spot any time of the year, but for some extra fun why not come and check out the Kings Park Festival. The festival offers guided tours through the park exploring the spring flora and fauna, various exhibitions, live musical performances, face painting for kids and much more. The festival is on from 1st to 30th September, so you still have plenty of time to check it out!

Now that you have read this article go out there and enjoy all there is to do in Perth and make the most of this beautiful spring weather.

Happy Exploring!

xx

Foodie Trends from Kale to Cronuts!

Us foodies are lucky here in Australia, as we a spoiled for choice when it comes to having a taste of different cuisines from all around the world right in our neighbourhoods. New restaurants and trends are popping up so let’s have a look at some hot foodie trends for 2016.

Deliver the Goods

Pizza delivery has been around for decades, but it seems things are stepping up a notch nowadays. The demand for restaurant style and fast food meals delivered to our doors appears to be on the rise. The ease and convenience of locating a restaurant, ordering, paying and earning loyalty points without having to wait on the phone or spend time driving seem to be what is driving this revolution.

The Most Important Meal Of The Day

A phrase we have all heard before has been taken to the next level. Restaurants and Cafes around Perth and the rest of Australia are going crazy trying to come up with the best breakfast delights to offer us! While the humble eggs and bacon remain popular, it seems our palate has expanded for visually appealing Instagram-worthy breakfasts. Decadent milkshakes in a jar topped with a Nutella infused donut also seem to be a necessary companion to a delicious breakfast. Australians latest breakfast obsession appears to be baked eggs such as shakshuka – baked eggs in a rich tomato paste just in case you’re hungry. Yum!

Sweet Treat

The humble mud cake from Coles just won’t cut it anymore. Social media is feeding a craze of extravagant desserts. Cronuts and churros are in. What’s a cronut you ask? Well, a cronut is a delicious combination of a donut and a croissant. If you want to take things to the next level, get your hands on a salted caramel cronut and thank us later. Spanish donuts known as churros are big this year as well, and cafes are getting creative with them! Cream and chocolate filled churros are on trend, and so are Oreo flavoured churros. Or why not try a creamy panna cotta with fairy floss from 150 East for something deliciously different.

Sharing is Caring

Tapas-style dining is here to stay. Tapas refers to various smaller plates of food. This is great for sharing with friends and trying a variety of different dishes from the menu rather than just picking one. Dishes are generally of a Spanish origin such as lamb meatballs, chorizo, and calamari with lemon and garlic. However, tapas can also be incorporated to feature delicious Modern Australia dishes such as garlic prawns, as well. Restaurants are most definitely getting creative with Tapas in 2016.

Balance Is Key

To feel slightly less guilty about all the cronuts and churros, menus which feature a good variety of clean or healthier meals are definitely on trend in 2016. We are becoming more health conscious, and vegetarian options are becoming more mainstream. Gluten free options are also becoming more widely available.  A focus on local produce like the quality ingredients at 150 East remain on trend. Even fast food restaurants are getting on board offering an ever increasing number of healthier menu options. So now you can have kale and a cronut, balance really is key!

Happy Eating!

xx

Trust the Tick!

Waterside South Perth Apartments was featured on Channel 9’s Destination WA, looking at The Tourism Council’s accreditation process.

They urge you to look for the green and golden tick logo when choosing your accommodation and activities on your next holiday.

The green and gold tick is p2art of the tourism Australia accreditation program to ensure great customer service and business practices.

This logo ensures that Accredited Tourism Business Australia have checked on rooms, emergency evacuation plans and maps, customer service policies, license and permit details and ensure they are all up to standards and meet their guidelines.

View the segment below or via YouTube here

Why book direct with us?

We get asked why guests should book direct through the Lodestar Hotel website, when there are all these discounted Hotel websites around! We thought we’d put together a list for you to show you why you should always book direct… and save! ?

1. Best Rate Guarantee

Yep, you guessed it! If you book directly with us on the website, phone or email we will guarantee you the lowest rate- which you won’t be able to access anywhere else. On the unlikely occasion you find a cheaper rate that is not listed on the site, all you have to do is call us and we will honour the lower rate!

2. No Booking Fees

Unlike those other websites, you’ll pay no booking fees when you book direct with Lodestar Hotel.

3. Fully Flexible Rates

Book now and pay later! We know your travel plans can change, which is why if you book a Best Available Rate with us, we give you the most flexible cancellation and booking amendments terms.

4. Advance Purchase Discounts

Already know when you want to stay? Book in advance and take advantage of our fantastic discounted rates. Instant Purchase Terms & Conditions apply.

5. Free WIFI

We understand that when you’re travelling being connected online is almost a necessity, and that’s why we won’t charge you for WIFI for your stay (maximum of 3 devices per room).

So in conclusion, always contact us direct to ensure you are getting the best rate possible for your stay!

Happy Booking… xx

Ultimate Foodie Festival Guide

Waterside South Perth has been featured in Expedia’s ‘The Ultimate Local Foodie Festival Guide’ for its proximity to the fantastic Twilight Hawker Market – and because of its quality service.

This famous Friday evening foodie event hosts around 30 pop-up stalls exhibiting exciting examples of cuisine from around the world is just a ferry ride away from the cosy accommodations at the Waterside South Perth.

Our stellar location near the Swan River also means guests can enjoy attractions such as the Perth Zoo and Kings Park. Additionally, South Perth has wonderful cafes, pubs, restaurants and shops to explore, as well as a stunning cityscape to check out while chowing on that takeaway from Twilight Hawker Market.

You can even take home enough leftovers for the next day – just warm them up in one of the well-equipped kitchens of our 35 fully kitted out flats. Grab the whole gang and make the most of our one or two-bed, 4-star options for a perfect Perth getaway.

Waterside South Perth guarantees you the best base to enjoy the Friday Twilight Hawker Market and with its long stays and delivery breakfasts available, you’ll be reluctant to leave.

Check out the full Ultimate Foodie Festival Guide here.

Holiday Packing

What to pack when going on Holiday!

We are lucky as we get to see people’s excitement as they walk into the or Waterside South Perth lobby, ready to start their holiday by staying at our apartments/hotel! But before they reach our Reception desk, organising the perfect holiday can be stressful. So here are our Top 10 things to make sure you pack before going on holiday.

Before you start, make a list of all your essentials and check what the weather will be like! If you are visiting us in Perth, check for the latest forecast.

  1. Check airline luggage and liquid restrictions and keep within these guidelines
  2. Depending on which country you are entering, ensure any medications you have on you are accompanied with a prescription
  3. Roll up a soft duffel bag in your main luggage, then on your way home you can put your clothes in there and use the extra room in your luggage for your holiday purchases
  4. Antibacterial wipes… this is self explanatory
  5. Label all luggage with your name, address and phone number (don’t forget the area and country code!)
  6. Ladies, bring the sneakers over the heels… trust me… unless you plan on going to any black tie events, go for the more comfy option
  7. Clothes you can pretty much buy anywhere… but you don’t want to be stuck without underwear! So make sure you pack enough (Keep in mind we provide fully contained apartments which means we provide a washing machine and dryer YAY!)
  8. Moisturiser. If you are not used to a different climate then this will be your lifesaver! No one likes having dry skin…
  9. Phone/camera/laptop charger. Most hotels will have spare phone chargers but if you’re still rocking the Nokia 3310 or we run out, it’s always best to be prepared!
  10. Pyjama’s…. we like to bring out our special “holiday” set… it’s so nice to sleep in new sheets and comfy PJ’s!

Remember if you are visiting Lodestar Hotel and have forgotten anything, just ask our friendly Reception staff. We will be more than happy to help you or point you in the right direction. Comment below with any things you think we may have missed!

Happy Holiday-ing! xx