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Hubble Bubble, forget your troubles . . .
If you're looking for a cosy corner to chill with friends and gorge on a variety of burgers, nuggets and drinks, the newest café on the block is Hubble Bubble. Opened just over a month ago, it's already difficult to get a spot amongst all the trendy teens that populate the latest addition to the café corner inside the compound of (Gulshan) Mango Café (?). The glowing orange ambience of the place and its staff is warm and welcoming so go on, settle in and stretch out on one of their low seaters.
The staff frankly recommends the biggest hit on their menu the whole range of burgers, from the Xtreme Bubble to the Angry Whopper and the Bubble Steak Extreme. But the chicken nuggets (made in the café and not un-frozen from the stores) are equally good, if not better, especially accompanied by a spicy sauce. The shashlic, chilly dog and fries with meat sauce are also definitely worth trying. Down them with a 'Sky High' (lemonade with a touch of vanilla) or 'Choco Dinosaur' (served hot or cold to your liking) drink! Prices are reasonable, with most items ranging between Tk 120 and Tk 260.
While the place obviously attracts late teens, 20-somethings are also likely to find their friends nestled in a corner. And if you're lucky, you might also run into a rising young celebrity. Though small, good use has been made of the space and parking is usually not a problem.
Kashfia Haque, 25, comments on her first visit to the café. "It's a great place for young people to hang out because the area is safe and the food is good. The staff are hospitable and the cook if you run into him is friendly too! It's just a bit small, so I hope they expand soon!"
Proprietors Ashiq Alam, Saniul Hossain and Arman Khan, encouraged by the popularity of their venture, plan to expand in terms of outlets, but their first will remain their (lucky) base, they say. So, until other bubbles appear around the city, check out Hubble Bubble at House #3, Road #72, Gulshan #2.
It's a treat, not only for your taste buds but your senses overall!
"Keeping in mind that winter paved in, we have some light shawls. These are in cotton and 'khadi'. They have block and embroidery with sequins,” says Shameem, owner of the boutique, Piran.
There are shawls in ash with tiny white flower motifs, and ones with gold motifs on white, with sequins and a geometrical white border. The one with a combination of leaves on black is also modest and inviting. "kantha" motifs with sequins are also seen here. These sophisticated creations in black and white range from Tk 550 to Tk 600.
Bright, inviting tie-dye in brown and orange present three-piece sets. Burnt sienna is also brought in here with pink. Floral motifs are included in the neat combinations. The shalwar kameez items are for Tk 600 to Tk 1650. These contain appliqué and embroidery. More combinations are due for the near future collection.
There are single "orna" offerings, where women buy one and match many of their combinations with them. The delicate materials vary from cotton to silk, "khadi" and "endi". Embroidery, block and tie-dye highlight these soft, seductive items. All the colours on an artist's palette are found in the collection of "ornas". The colours found here are maroon, gold, turquoise, vermilion and other festive colours.
"Most of the 'Piran' costume jewellery is in brass. To this is added sliver and wood. The ensembles are complete with coloured glass beads and shells. They vary from Tk 100 to Tk 500. We also use bamboo and wood. The motifs in these are taken from local origin and vary from geometrical to floral, which is used on the garments. Engraving in colour contrasts is here. Armlets, anklets, large hair pins are all here in different combinations," says Shameem.
The piece de resistance of this shop is the masks that one gets here for wall decorations, which vary from Tk 150 to 1, 500. They are often of brass. Sometimes the surface is oxidised and at times polished. The wooden ones are first burned. The wood is then scraped to get a particular texture. Narrow brass sheets are cut and used for details and highlighting. Bamboo masks are also here, and they range from Tk 300 to Tk 1, 500. Large decorated wooden spoons in bright colours, completed with fine floral patterns also catch the eye.
One is not surprised that the products in Piran are so sophisticated and so affordable. The shop is run by Chotna and Shameem, two ex-students of the Department of Fine Arts, DU. Shameem, the husband is also a reputed teacher of one finest English Medium, schools in Dhanmondi.
Their friends and associates included Professors of the Fine Arts Department, DU like Professor Alvi.
The work is done by people who have once worked at the same department at Dhaka, or are guided by the talented couple, who own the boutique. Hats off to this nonpareil boutique.
By Fayza Haq
Rediscovered Ethnic Definition (RED) is a beauty salon launched recently at Banani. Inaugurated by Kaniz Alman Khan, CEO of Persona along with designer Shahrukh Shahid and Gulshan Nassrin Chowdhury, Chairperson, Radiant Institute of Design, the shop promises chic makeup casual, party and bridal as well as makeover suitable for professional modelling purposes.
Speaking of their quality services, Afroza Kamal says that aromatherapy is very popular here in Dhaka and their products come without side effects. Hair stylists are available for a range of trendy cuts, while trained masseuse are available for a relaxing full body massage.
RED has its own small boutique and also a studio.
From The Ls Desk
This is the season to be jolly…fa lala lala la! To be merry and to marry…fa lala lala la!
Well maybe the carol got twisted here but it is the official wedding season. However this 'in season' phrase obviously doesn't put a damper on March or July weddings per se. You can get married throughout the 365 days now; the appointment dairy of any salon will second this.
Gone are the days when Bangalis consulted the punjika, avoided the Shoni/Mongol days, gave special emphasis on Purnima, considered Ashura, Ramadan, before setting up a wedding date.
Convenience is the key word now, synchronising it with friends and family being able to attend from overseas, with the bride's exam schedule or the groom's earn leave status, or with the availability of venues.
As one wise soul pointed out, "if you consider the moon's revolutions, the inauspiciousness of Tuesdays and Saturdays, the graveness of holy months; you are left with only fifty days or so among the 365 days and there is no place for practicality in them." And aptly so.
Anyway once the dates are fixed, that's when the hullabaloo begins. The engagements, the bachelor's party, aai buro bhaat, mehndi, holdi, sangeet, wedding, reception, firani, the groom's first bazaar at the in-laws, the bride's first cooking at his place, the dinner with gate money and the unplanned party with wedding leftovers. The to-do list just goes on and on and even after the couple returns from their honeymoon, the series of dinners at the Khalas' and Mamas' continue.
We love entertaining and dramatising and weddings give us ample chance to do what we want. Stocking the wardrobe with saris from Kolkata, to starving the entire day only to gorge on kachchis at dinner, we'd do anything to socialise and play the part of being the perfect party princess. The lengths you have to go to find the matching saris, to do the party make-ups, plan ahead to avoid the traffic jams, and the early leave from work; all of it.
To make sure that we were present at the occasion we'd give the invited guests enough drama to remember the wedding with fond memories.
For example, you patiently sit in the car for two hours, pushing through the ugly traffic jam to make sure you are seen only to explode if you find out that your driver wasn't given his packet or wasn't treated with respect. Everything becomes a chore and at the end not much fun.
Thus a hard decision must be taken, be a bachelor forever; let your children elope, pretend you don't like it, then give them the money to set up their future properly; or go for simple wedding and give your guests coupons with a week's validity so that they can go and be entertained on their own time. Or simply we can go back to the old ways and cut out the modern day wedding frills and actually wrap it all up in a day's work.
By Raffat Binte Rashid
On The Cover
Looking forward at the year to come. The cover may be dreamy, but a full life has to be interspersed with romance and humour, hence the fun-filled cover story.
Make-up and styling: Sadia Moyeen, La Belle
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