Happy holidays everyone! I hope you have had wonderful experiences worth remembering this season because quite frankly good memories are the only ones worth remembering innit? I have had a pretty nice time being home and having family around but I still have memories of 2016 that makes me grateful that I have lived it. From people I met to places I have been, 2016 was a good year for me. One recent and pretty amazing experience was my weekend at the DUNES Abuja which I can’t keep calm about… just can’t.
So Vienne called me and asked ‘Jane I know you are a busy person, would you be available for a three day weekend trip to Abuja sometime next week’. My ears perked at that, of course I was available, I had been looking for an opportunity to leave Lagos and get away from the hectic demands of work, and the best part was I got to experience Abuja with some friends and acquaintances in the industry, yes I was so game! The trip was an all-expense-paid one scheduled for 9th – 11th of December and we arrived Abuja late because our flight was delayed – as usual- and we were picked up from the airport and taken to our hotel rooms. Getting to our hotels rooms were individual welcome letters waiting for all 12 of us and a well-stocked mini bar, I’m talking well stocked people – chocolates, biscuits, wine fruits; you name it.
We went downstairs to have lunch with ice cream and pastries for dessert, the best yet; and then we had to go freshen up for all-white masked party in an outdoor restaurant and believe me, we all came prepared, our photogame was on point too as we looked too good not to take tons of pictures. We had a lot of fun that evening, with the live band; all on the same premises. So from Day 1 at the Dunes, I realized a tourist would have an amazing time visiting as you could get all the fun and necessities on the same grounds. The Dunes has a restaurant, bar, grocery store and would make life easy for anyone.
Day 2 came bright and early, and after a breakfast of a croissant, sandwich and tea; I had 2 meetings with some fashion influencers based in Abuja, and it was nice relaxing in a cool environment while having fashion hook-ups – the best kind of hook-ups there is *wink*. That same day was the launch of the Nigerian section of the Dunes fashion retail store and I had the opportunity to handle the Instagram media takeover and supervise the runway show; so in the real sense of it, was I really working while on a holiday I took to get away from work ? Yes, you could say that, but I was loving every minute of it! I had met quite a number of lovely people and was having a good time – I met the fabulous owner of 41 Luxe store and that was a great opportunity working with her on the runway show.
As we called it a day, or so I thought, we were invited to yet another lovely dinner in the indoor restaurant this time and yes it was relaxing and fun too. So my holiday was over, it was a lovely experience and I was ready to go get some sleep and get ready to leave Abuja the next morning, but that was not to be the case. Sitting outside my door the following morning was an envelope with a task for us to solve a riddle with clear instructions ‘Don’t forget the riddle’. Hmm.. So I started cramming the riddle, for the life of me I had no idea what lay ahead, lol. I found out we were supposed to look for hidden items and sadly I didn’t win anything but three people from my holiday party won gifts courtesy Vienne and The Dunes.
Instead of feeling disappointed, I decided to buy myself some of the gifts that were given; so I got myself a Roberto Cavalli towel (which will be hanging in my house like a souvenir) before we went for brunch of Zaatar and Cheese, oh how I love cheese! Having brunch brought back memories of the good old days when Mom used to work as a steward for a Lebanese family. We bought some chops to take home to Lagos with us, I had heard about the Yahuza Suya so I got that and some Kilishi and then it was goodbye Abuja; we were home-bound.
Thinking back I would say that was an utterly amazing experience worth repeating and you can tell from our pictures we had an awesome time there. I would absolutely love to visit the Dunes again. I like the fact that it is premium and classy – you should visit their luxury store where everything i authentic, actually authenticated prior to sale. So if you want your man to know what a premium lady you are, take him to the Dunes so he can spoil you a little ( I know the guys are wondering why the ladies get to be spoiled, well you get a lot of love when your woman is spoiled so that is a win-win for everyone wouldn’t you say?) , trust me, The Dunes is the place.
Jane Michael Ekanem.