The Ambitionista
 

It List: Dining

Heidi Nazarudin of The Ambitionista Tea Time at The Majestic Hotel

If there’s one more thing I’m head over heels in love with– it’s FOOD! Glorious, glorious FOOD! More so if they look as stunning as the picture above taken back during my stay at The Majestic Hotel. If you’re aiming for that Instagram worthy Foodie Shot or just want to leave your guests drooling with these beautifully set meals, then check out my stylish dining must-haves!

Businesswoman Having High Tea at The Majestic Hotel Malaysia

Gorgeous high tea setting at The Majestic Hotel | Photography by Mandy Aileen


How To Find The Perfect Apartment

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Let’s be honest, searching for a new apartment can be exciting, but it can also be just as stressful. Trust me, I know. But taking the time and resources to locate the best place for you definitely worth it. There a many different facets to apartment hunting that need to be considered while looking for the perfect place. Not only is price a major factor in the decision making process, but one has to consider any additional fees, amenities, location and much more. Luckily for you, I have the necessary elements one must consider to find the perfect apartment!

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Interior Features

First, you need to know what you want. Make a list of things that are negotiable and non-negotiable. Decide what is important for you to have in your next home. How many bedrooms do you want? What is your minimum and maximum square footage? How much closet space do you need? Washer and Dryer? Figuring out everything you want in an apartment before your begin hunt will help you stay organized and on track with your search.

Location

Location is very important! Not only do you want your apartment to be in a safe location, it’s ideal for it to be not to far from the freeway and shopping centers (groceries, retail, etc). Its also important for it to be close to your place of work; you don’t want your commute to be too far from where you live.

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Amenities

What amenities are important to you for your new place? Gym, pool, spa multipurpose room? These amenities can prove to be very beneficial for many reasons. Having a gym membership can be costly, with prices ranging from $30 to around $120 a month. Having a gym on-site is a huge plus if you think you utilize a fitness center in your building. A pool or spa is definitely a great amenity that can help you unwind and relax whenever you want. Whatever amenities you determine are necessary for your new complex/ building, make sure to include them on your list of ‘must-haves’ for your search.

Do Your Research

For each place you’re interested in, make sure to do thorough research on each place. For instance, you might want to find out whether there is designated parking for each tenant. This is important considering you don’t want to have to have to circle your complex over and over to find a parking space. Also, its a better safety precaution to have a designated space- preferably one that is close to your building. Don’t get trapped by hidden expenses either. Ask who is responsible to pay for electricity, heat, Cable TV, and water? Also for your safety, ask what security features and fire protection features do they have?


I hope this mini-guide helps make a seamless search for your new place. Happy apartment hunting!


Should You Take An Unpaid Internship?

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When someone hears the words “unpaid” and “work” in the same sentence, the first reaction is usually to turn the other way. Foregoing a paycheck, for an internship, may not fit everyones budget (considering living expenses, car payments, etc). However, sometimes the opportunity presented seems to good to pass up. The company might be one where having their name on your resume is enough to trump a paycheck- for a period of time, of course. It can be a daunting dilemma to decide if taking an unpaid internship is worth it. So to make a clear decision, lets consider pros and cons on taking an unpaid internship.

PROS:

Gaining Experience & Networking

There are seemingly few benefits to taking an unpaid internship. However, they are still important ones. The experience you gain from interning at any particular company is great to put on your resume. The work is completely valid, whether paid or not. Another positive aspect to an unpaid internship is that you will be able to network and make connections that can later be used as references. Although both can be said for a paid internship, an unpaid internship is the next best option if you’re more focused on getting experience vs. payment.

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CONS:

Working For Free

This is probably the biggest disliked aspect to an internship that doesn’t pay. You work, a job, without the benefit of getting paid for your work. Many people feel that this is completely unfair, considering that companies are benefiting from free labor and that they essentially exploit unpaid interns to get free work.

No Employee Protection

Another downside to unpaid internships is that they don’t offer protection against employee discrimination or sexual harassment. Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 protects employees, however, does not have protective provisions for unpaid interns or “trainees” in regards to discrimination and harassment. This is a big aspect to consider before diving into any unpaid position. You want to always take into consideration your safety and protection. If you feel that you are (or would be) unsafe, discriminated against or harassed, its best to remove yourself from that situation.

Unpaid Internships Are Often Illegal

Yes, you read that right; Illegal. In June 2013, concerning a case of two interns working on the film, ‘Black Swan’, the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York ruled that the interns were classified as employees rather than “trainees” according to the Fair Labor Standards Act. For an intern to be classified as a “trainee”, their relationship with the employer adhere to the criteria of a six-part test, which explains the nature of an approved intern-employer relationship.

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The unfortunate thing about an unpaid internship is that is can be very easy to be taken advantage of in that situation. However, if the opportunity of a paid internship does not present itself and if willing to take the risk, there are benefits that can help you gain the experience needed to help fuel the advancement of your career.


How To Own The Room

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Everyone has the potential to be an irresistible, room-captivating rockstar- even if they don’t know it yet. I recently saw the beautiful and talented Jazz singer, Ariana Savalas, perform and what I found inspiring about her is that she knows how to captivate and own her audience, flawlessly. Her style and charm is very reminiscent of the former days of sophisticated stardom; channeling the charming, sultry and witty, glamorously clad legends of the old hollywood era. What better way to learn how to ‘own the room’ than from the woman who could enter a room, without saying a word, and still steal the hearts of everyone in her presence? Follow these 6 tips, from Ariana herself, on becoming a room-captivating maven.

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1. Start small: Working with smaller crowds allows for you to really stand out amongst those around you. You are in turn allowed to introduce yourself (always use your first and last name), and be able to converse in a well-versed manner, all of which all sets the stage for people to know and remember who you are.

2. Slowly expand your crowd: Ariana started performing in front of family and close friends during her formative years. In other words, she had a tremendous amount of practice before she was comfortable performing in front of larger crowds. Once you become comfortable with practicing in smaller groups, you can transition into working with large ones. By starting small, you’ll notice how much more comfortable you’ll become in front of larger groups.

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3. Practice makes perfect: You are certainly not going to be great at owning the room first time around (which is why tip no. 2 is so important). You might get nervous, fumble your words, or not know what to say… Just remember to breathe and be yourself. If your first time out doesn’t go as expected, try again! Practice really does make perfect and you’ll be confident, owning the room in no time.

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4. Be well rested and focused: No one has ever owned a room when they’re looking and acting as if they just rolled out of bed. If you are planning on attending an event, be sure to rest well, drink plenty of water, and keep your head clear to remain completely focused and in the moment.Basically don’t plan a wild girls night out ( or girls night in, for that matter) when you have a big company presentation at 9 am the next morning.

5. Know your crowd: Ariana knows how to reads her audience well. She states, “It’s like a first date – you try to find out their background, room atmosphere so that you can know whether to amp up the jokes or tone it down.” This is an excellent tid-bit of advice. Even if you have never met the people who surround you, you can learn a great deal about them. A great way to do this is by watching the conversation-styles and listening to the topics being discussed by those around you, prior to diving into a conversation. Learn your audience, then you can take them by storm!

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6. Give credit where credit is due: This is particularly important if you are sharing the stage with others (your friends or partner perhaps).  “You want them to help you out and giving you their best,” says Ariana. Be each others support system and own the room together. Be prepared, the results may turn out even better than expected!

Pretty simple, right? Now that you have the 6 steps necessary to ‘own the room’ and and engage an audience, put them to use! You’ll be able to successfully mingle and make new connections, whether for work or play. The benefits to learning to own the room are essentially endless!Now if only I can rock a rocking animal print dress and 6 inch heels to my next meeting.