Home   |  Issues  |  The Daily Star Home | Volume 5, Issue 27, Tuesday July 8, 2008



Our Pick

A look into Hotel Sarina

Nestled in the midst of high-rise buildings in the Kamal Atarturk Avenue, Gulshan, there is a hotel, somewhat inconspicuous and unlike many hotels that flaunt the five star certification, has remained largely overlooked by the media. For a handful of years, it has remained undercover, but with a surprising volume of guests, particularly from the corporate sector. We decided to take a sneak peak, and have been greeted with some pleasant surprises indeed.

The hotel, which started out as a three star has quickly made its mark and has now established itself as a five star business boutique hotel. It is referred to as a business hotel because of the special features that they provide, such as free internet connection and a safety locker in every room. One can merely plug in their laptop to get access to the Internet, and for those guests who are not carrying one, the hotel takes extra measures to provide them with one. The rooms also include work desks and a mini bar, and the bathrooms also come with separate hair dryers.

The entire interiors are done in rich, dark wood paneling that gives off a classy, Victorian ambience. The hotel is of twenty stories and has five restaurants, with a swimming pool and a health club situated on the 19th floor. The use of the pool, health club, sauna, steam bath, all come as complementary to each guest. The hotel has available 201 rooms including 14 suites. They also offer the use of their 24 hours business centre for their guests who are in urgent need to get their work done. They also have four banquet halls.

The restaurants include: The Lobby Lounge, where on can enjoy a quick cup of coffee and a variety of confectionaries. Summerfields, a restaurant that is open 24 hours and offers fusion food and delights from all over the world. On a personal note, try out the vanilla mousse and the fruit tart (although they don't look like the conventional tarts). Risotto, the Italian restaurant offers authentic Italian cuisine and the very best in wines. Amrit, offers Indian delicacies of a totally different arena. Picasso, the cigar bar, with a breathtaking view of the city, where they have available famous cigars from all around the world, and which is open from 5:00pm till 11:00pm. Picasso also serves a full range of cocktail, spirits and wines for the connoisseurs. Both Picasso and Amrit offers live entertainment of classical and semi-classical music. And finally, the Elite restaurant, for those, as the name suggests, with truly elite taste buds.

The hotel has completely separate elevators for service staff, as well as separate sections of rooms so as to maintain complete privacy and exclusivity of their guests.

It is headed by Managing Director, Golam Sarwar, a marine engineer turned business man, who originally owned Hotel Harbour View in Chittagong, and then sold it and shifted to Dhaka.

Another totally different of the Sarina hospitality is the Sarina Cruise, which comprises of a seven hour long cruise from Ashulia BIWTA Terminal. Under the most sophisticated circumstances; the ship provides accommodation for 150 guests, is fully air-conditioned and offers a tantalizing international cuisine.

In the end, we walked out in the intermittent drizzle, with eyes feasted, appetites sated, and a lot of information to relay to the public. So make a point in checking Hotel Sarina out. We're sure you would not regret it.

By Shahmuddin Ahmed Siddiky and Farina Noireet

Budget Smart

A knack for the pluck

Name: Tashfin Nawaz
Age: 21
Occupation: University student
Desire: To buy an acoustic guitar
Budget: Tk 8000

Tashfin has allotted quite a good amount for the purchase of his first acoustic guitar, therefore he has quite a number of options available at hand. Givson and Signature guitars with sleek, black bodies are available at Tk 4800. Maxtone guitars will be available within a range of Tk 4000-12000. If Tashfin decides to relax his budget, he can opt for an Ibanez guitar. These are available within Tk 8000-16000. Ovation is a world-renowned brand in acoustic guitars, and they have a huge range of models which can cost anything between Tk 12000 to 1 lakh. The guitar should be bought from a well-reputed shop like Golden Music in Mohakhali or Melody and Shur Niketan near Science Laboratory Mor, to make sure he gets the best deal.

Before deciding which brand to settle for, Tashfin needs to ascertain whether he would be playing for the guitar only for his own recreation or for more professional purposes. If he is not a professional musician and plays the guitar only to entertain himself and his friends, Givson or Signature guitars will be perfect for him. However, if he is interested to take up music as a profession and has plans to use the guitar for recording purposes, he should buy a Maxtone, Ibanez or Ovation. All of these provide high quality sound and have their own equalizer attached. All of the above mentioned guitars also have their own consoles, which enable them to be connected to amplifiers or computers to get better sound.

Prior to buying a particular guitar, the alignment of the strings needs to be checked. The strings should be aligned perfectly straight. There should be no cracks on the body of the guitar. Before paying for his purchase, Tashfin should also tune the guitar and check the clarity of the sounds and tones.

An acoustic guitar is quite an investment for a student of Tashfin's age, so he will want to take ample care of it. Guitar bags are available within Tk 200, which will prevent the guitar from accumulating dust and dirt. A liquid cleaner and polish is also available within Tk 350. The strings need to be changed every few months. A set of six strings from Classic or Reynold will cost Tk 120-150. Strings from D'Addario are costlier and will be available at Tk 400. Guitar picks of various sizes and textures are also available within Tk 30.

By Wasia Mehnaz

On The Cover

The monsoon is in full swing, and the rain, both literally and figuratively, is pitter-pattering on us. It inspires a multitude of emotions- the simple joy of opening up the senses, the intricate patchwork of love and so much more. Star Lifestyle pays tribute to the hustle bustle, the efflorescence of emotions the season evokes. For more on monsoon, check out our scoop in page 8.

Photo: Sazzad Ibne Sayed

Sibling bondage

You both are staring. Both sharing the same expressions, yet each of you are unique. You know you are God's wonderful creations, you knew it all along. You feel you are the center of attraction, getting all the attention you can ever ask for; through your mischief you are being warned, through your sweetness you are being cared and pampered. You know the whole world will surrender to your child like innocence.

Having siblings is the most amazing gift you can ever wish for. For those who are the fortunate, you should hold on to this precious bondage at all times. You may consider the other person to be the most annoying, yet charismatic in making your life miserable with some impeccable performance, destructive, but you are helpless whenever you hear the giggle. However, at the end of the day, you find your brother or sister to be the best of the people, whom you can confide in, share your thoughts with and most importantly take advices from. Some of us do see our elders as role models and we often try to follow their footsteps.

Twins are rare to find, just like two bodies but one soul, exploring people reactions, experiencing the unexpected. But as we cross adolescence, our thoughts and ethics begin to go in different dimensions. We cross the teen hurdle and enter adulthood. The gap starts increasing; to elucidate, losing touch with our own brothers and sisters. Age plays a crucial factor in terms of understanding each other's sentiments. Between the brothers it has often been observed an inferiority complex develops which is often absent between a brother and a sister. However, if sisters are of the same age, there may be jealousy about having possessions and authority on people or belongings.

The harsh realities of life only snatch the affection from our eyes making us more mechanical. Days turn into months and we seldom meet with our beloved siblings even though we stay under the same roof. Communication becomes less prominent and as we grow older, relationship turns into formality. The sweetness, the charm, the mischief and the care, all get hidden and we face each other with more serious attitude. But if considered all these should not be so significant to choose a different path for confronting each other.

The significance of this relationship has indeed got a very deep root, starting from the day you are born and see each other for the first time. But we fail to perceive this and consequently end up suffering from misconceptions, fight on petty issues, and become all so huffy on the person whom you love so much. If we could pause for a while and recollect our doings then we would find all these to be pointless. Simple words can help us smile, simple thoughts can be innovative, simple gestures can build trust, and a simple embrace can rekindle the spirit of sibling bondage.

By Yamin Tauseef Jahangir



home | Issues | The Daily Star Home

2008 The Daily Star