Tuesday, 2 April 2013

The Mint Velvet Cayman Islands Holiday Competition! Xx

The most perfect combination:
A Gorgeous new £500 Wardrobe of 
the Spring/Summer 2013 Mint Velvet Collection,
and an incredible 7 night holiday to the beautiful Cayman Islands!

Get Away from it All!
Mint Velvet have teamed up with the 
to offer you a chance to WIN a wonderful 7 night holiday 
to the Cayman Islands. 
Kickback, relax and soak up all that the Cayman Islands have to offer; 
from stunning beaches, exotic wildlife and fun filled activities 
(or simply some sun, if that's more your thing). 
And, do it in style, Mint Velvet will be sending you off 
with a gorgeous new wardrobe of summer goodies worth £500, 
so you really can unwind in style.

This wonderful prize is a 7 night holiday 
at the Westin Grand Cayman Seven Mile Beach Resort and Spa, 
situated on one of the most fabulous beaches in the Caribbean 
Seven Mile Beach on a bed and breakfast basis. 

The Westin Hotel Grand Cayman

Flights from London, and island hotel transfers are included. 
The winner can choose two of the following: 
an exhilarating helicopter trip with Jerome; 
dive to 30 metres in the Atlantis submarine and be amazed 
by the spectacular coral and marine life; 
for certified divers - a 2 tank dive or for beginners, 
a PADI Resort Course (introductory dive experience); 
enjoy the myriad colours, perfumes and wildlife
in the 65 acre Queen Elizabeth II Botanic Park.

to Enter! Xx

Also of course check this book
photographed by Sparkle Style's Editor in Chief:

The Cayman Islands by Jenny Palmer  

  • Hardcover: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Macmillan Caribbean
  • Product Dimensions: 2.3 x 25.5 x 21.5 cm

The Cayman Islands - a truly magical place and 
Jenny Palmer has provided a memento to 
treasure of a much-loved part of the Caribbean Grand Cayman, 
Cayman Brac and Little Cayman - the three pristine coral land masses which comprise the Cayman Islands - total just 100 square miles. 
Yet this fascinating British Crown Colony, 480 miles south of Miami, is a leading offshore financial centre as well as a major tourist destination. 
Home of the famous green turtle (the national symbol), the Cayman Islands are perhaps best known for diving and underwater attractions. 
The waters around the islands are exceptionally clear making this one of the world's great dive sites. But, of course, there is so much more to see and to discover. 
In this island portrait, containing over 140 specially commissioned colour photographs, Jenny Palmer takes us on an in-depth tour of all three islands, 
highlighting not only the major tourist and underwater delights but also revealing their cultural, historical and artistic heritage. 
Above all, she provides an intimate portrait of the islanders themselves - close up - leading their everyday lives.


The Cayman Islands An Introduction and Guide by Jenny Palmer

Paperback: 144 pages

Publisher: Macmillan Caribbean

Product Dimensions:  1 x 21.5 x 14 cm

The Cayman Islands: An Introduction and Guide is the definitive and essential Guide for any visit to this heavenly trio of islands. 
Compiled and photographed by the author, the guide covers the three Cayman Islands - Grand Cayman, Cayman Brac and Little Cayman 
detailing their history, culture, ecology, diving, main attractions, activities, hotels, restaurants and nightlife. Richly illustrated, 
it gives unique inside information to this paradise surrounded by the Caribbean Sea and will also serve as a comprehensive memento of your trip.

About Jenny Palmer:
Jenny Palmer

After a fashion foundation Year at Kingston, and 1st Class Honours Degree in Visual Art Jenny worked initially as a photographers agent in Kings Road London, 
and then as Fashion Coordinator on Harpers Bazaar.  Was Fashion Editor at Marie Claire, and styled for Independent Sunday Times, Next, Warehouse and Impulse Body spray.  
Her Photography has appeared in The Face, Vogue, YOU, the Evening Standard, British Airways and Virgin magazines.  
She has four Caribbean Travel and Art books published by Macmillan and available on Amazon.  
Jenny Palmer is Editor-in-Chief of Sparkle Style the premier Fashion, Beauty and Celebrity Style online magazine,
which launched on 24/7/2011. www.sparklestyle.co.uk

Top Ten Cayman Islands Experiences:

1: Stingray City:

You can choose from two areas from which to view the stingraysin Grand Cayman.  
There is a 12 foot area in North Sound where you can snorkel, swim and dive, or there is the sandbar nere the barrierr eef where the water is waist deep, 
crystal clear and turquoise, so you can stand or even kneel with the stingrays.

  The sandbar is ideal if you are not a diver as you don't need fins or a snorkel.  
You need to shuffle your feet along the sand in a walk called the 'Stingray Shuffle' to avoid lifting your feet and taking large steps when you might 
inadvertently stand on a stingray.  Caymanian Captains first began taking tourists to this spot in 1951, and they know the area well.
Picture courtesy Cathy Church
Sunset House Grand Cayman

2: Rum Point

Is a must for snorkelling and relaxing in hammocks by the beach where the water is waist deep until very far out. 
 It is great for children!  
Rum Point Beach
You can take a boat trip to Rum Point from town or drive.  Many boats moor up here at the weekend for parties.
There is a very long dock which is great to walk along and take in all that horizon, turquoise sea and azure sky. 

Red Sail Sports has a shop here where you can book diving, snorkelling, boat, jet ski and other excursions. 
 The Wreck Bar is the main bar and restaurant here and serves the best cocktails and food.  The waiters and waitresses are always very busy 
- there is a sign ' do not fee or touch the bartenders' - good advice!

3: Seven Mile Beach and the Westin Casuarina Hotel

The seemingly endless and most gorgeous beach with the whitest sand and most turquoise sea, and what takes me back to Cayman always.
 jet skis at the westin
 A beautiful Casuarina Tree at the Westin

The Turquoise Crystal waters on Seven Mile Beach
My favourite spot is of course just outside the Westin where I always stay.  This is the site of the first ever Hotel on Grand Cayman, 
and Englishman Benson Greenall knew what he was doing when he bought the land.  In the winter season of 1950-51 Greenall opened the 
luxury 12 room Galleon Beach Hotel in this very place. 

Can you imagine this Beach with just one Hotel on it?? 
Benson Greenall enlarged the Galleon Beach to 84 rooms in January 1956 
and it was described as 'one of the finest hotel building in the West Indies'. The rest as they say  - is History.  

4: The Turtle Farm

'Swim with turtles in a lagoon full of colorful marine life. 
Come nose to nose with sharks and; other predators of the sea. 
Explore a free flight zone filled with local and exotic birds.'
Here you can enjoy:
Turtle Encounters, Aquatic Adventures, Wild Caribbean and Nature and Culture Exhibitions
Baby Turtles at the Turtle Farm
You can see the turtles from babies through to very large adult; snorkel with many species of fish, see sharks being fed,
swim in the lagoon with waterfalls, there is a fabulous Aviary and also a great restaurant.

5: Minds Eye:

#4 South Sound Road, at the 
intersection of Walkers Road and South Sound Road. 
Cayman National Cultural Foundation offers guided tours at Mind's Eye - the Visionary World of Miss Lassie

Visitors are able to view the inside of the wattle and daub house, 

where the walls and ceilings are covered in Miss Lassie’s paintings and 
The House is set up to replicate what it would have looked like when Miss Lassie and her family lived there


A 4th generation Caymanian, Gladwyn K. "Lassie" Bush 
began painting at the age of 62, 
after what she describes as a visionary experience. 
Strong Christian themes run through her work, 
which she painted not only on canvas, but also on the walls,
 windows and furnishings of her home.
Mrs. Bush was awarded a national honour,
 Member of the British Empire (MBE) in 1997 and received
 the award during the Queen’s Birthday celebrations 
in Grand Cayman on June 15, 1998. 
She was also a recipient of the Cayman National Cultural Foundation's Heritage Award. 
Her work is documented in the 156-page art book, 
My Markings - the Art of Gladwyn K. Bush, published by the Cultural Foundation. 
Examples of her work formed part of the travelling 
exhibition of contemporary Caribbean art, 'Carib Art', 
and she is one of the artists profiled in books 
on intuitive art worldwide: Raw Creation (Phaidon Press), 
Caribbean Art (Thames and Hudson) and 
Fantasy Worlds (Benedikt Taschen Verlag)
Her work is in private collections in England, 
the United States, Jamaica, South Africa, Germany and the Cayman Islands, 
and in the collection of the 
American Visionary Arts Museum in Baltimore, Maryland. 
Miss Lassie passed away on Monday, November 24, 2003 at the age of 89.

6: Camana Bay:

Moore Ruble Yudell won the highest honour for 
an architectural firm for its work on Camana Bay.
A whole new town in the heart of Grand Cayman.  
Entertainment, Food, Architecture, Fashion. 'Horizons Expand. Life Blossoms'

On 500 acres stretching from the turquoise waters of Seven Mile Beach 
to the majestic North Sound is a community where everything you
need to live, work and play is within easy walking distance from shops, 
restaurants, office buildings, sports facilities and a school to residential
neighbourhoos, public parks, gardens and courtyards.

An example of New Urbanism architecture the Town 
was developed by Dart Realty in collaboration with an exceptional team of
visionaries including architects, city planners, landscape designer, and artisans.  
Together, they have created a unique
community where the vibrancy of island living is enhanced 
with the conveniences of an urban environment.

7: The Cayman Motor Museum, West Bay

Here there are  80 vehicles which collectively provide an historical tour of motoring,
starting with the first automobile ever produced, an 1886 Benz and an an exact model of the first vehicle ever to be driven in the Cayman Islands — a 1905 Cadillac.
 There is an original “Batmobile” that Batman and Robin drove around Gotham in the 1960s television show and an
 an exact replica of the “Batcycle”.   You can see the 1929 Yellow Rolls-Royce from the movie,
Queen Elizabeth II’s first limousine the 1956 Daimler DK400, 
mint condition Ferraris, Maseratis, Corvettes, Jaguars, 
Rolls-Royces (including a 1930 “Phantom”) and Bentleys (including Sir Elton John’s 1963 classic). 

8: Hell

Hell is a group of short, black limestone formations in West Bay Grand Cayman.  It is roughly the size of half a football field.
You can see it from a viewing gallery as it is not possible to walk among the razor sharp stones.  It got is name as  "a local official exclaimed, 'This is what Hell must look like.'"

There is decking around the ironshore where you can have your picture taken with the carved wooden devil. 
Ivan Farrington owns the gift shop and is always fabulously dressed as the devil. He asks
everyone 'where the hell they are from', and 'who the hell they are'.  
He, in fact, was a merchant seaman and will tell you he has been 'to hell and back'. 
 You can send a postcard home with a hell post mark from the Hell Post Office next door.

9: Pedro Castle

At a time in the Cayman Islands when most people lived in tiny, thatch-covered houses, 
a wealthy Englishman, using slave labour from Jamaica, created an astonishing 3-storey building called Pedro St. James.
In the 1990s, the Government of the Cayman Islands purchased Pedro St. James 
and painstakingly restored the Great House to the splendor of its 18th century heritage.

Today, visitors can stroll through the imposing edifice with its period furniture and 
authentic artifacts to experience what life was like so long ago in Cayman’s history.

10: Botanic Garden

Her Royal Majesty Queen Elizabeth II opened the Grand Cayman Botanic Park in 1994 when the 
Woodland Trail was complete.  Since then it has grown to be recognized as a world class facility.
It has an Annual Orchid show and in 2008 was invited to design an entry for the Chelsea Flower show which won a Silver Award. 
 “The inspiration for the 2008 Chelsea Flower Show exhibit was the rich cultural history of the Cayman Islands. A half-size traditional 
Cayman Cat Boat graced the exhibit as a tribute to Cayman’s proud seafaring traditions. Time-honoured elements of the Cayman sand garden 
-- including native, traditional and economic plants -- were juxtaposed with many of the plants that are now found in today’s modern Cayman garden.”

Also check the National Gallery 

This is the most beautiful building just behind the West Bay Road and well worth a visit.  
It holds up to six exhibitions annually .  It is home to the National Collection a significan body 
of Caymanian artwork which has been collected and maintained by the National Gallery since its inception.

The National Gallery of the Cayman Islands was established in 1996 and is a vibrant arts organisation 
that seeks to fulfill its mission through exhibitions, artist residences, education/outreach programmes and research projects.

Artists Aston Ebanks (above) and Randy Cholette (below)

and the National Museum:
The Cayman Islands National Museum celebrates the unique natural and cultural heritage of the three Islands 
- Grand Cayman, Cayman Brac and Little Cayman.. Through dynamic programmes, exhibits, 
and collections, the museum nurtures a
living connection with the nation's past and its future quality of life.

George Town Harbour

Pure Art

on the South Sound Road near to Mind's Eye
Miss Lassie's House


The Dock at Northside

Until next time J Xx

1 comment:

  1. You will find that the Cayman Islands are the best places to visit and spend your valuable time with family or with a group of friends all together. This place has hundreds of resorts, hotels, restaurants and parks for kids as well as adults too. This time give a gift to your children by taking them here. The Grand Cayman restaurants serve all kinds of cuisines.