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VISIT WHISTLER, B.C

The Journey

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PHOTOGRAPHY & WORDS BY PORTIA LARGE 

As I cleared customs and queued in the narrow aisle of the plane, I knew that my small horizon was bound to broaden. On route to Canadian customs, I was beyond excited to experience snow for the first time in Whistler, British Columbia. #LetsLiveLarge

GOLD COAST > NEW ZEALAND > VANCOUVER

  • PEAK2PEAK
  • White Christmas
  • Snowmobile
  • Fresh Tracks
  • Cat Ski
  • Heli Ski
  • Northern Lights
  • Whistler Train Wreck
  • Walk on a frozen lake
  • Visit an outdoor spa
  • Ice Caves
  • Ice Skate
  • Bungee Jump
  • Local food and drink


TANDEM BIKE RIDING VANCOUVER:

We had a couple days to kill in Vancouver so Growing up in the tropical Whitsundays Australia, I felt severely unprepared for the cooler climate, despite loading my American Tourister to the brim with thick knits and thermals. When trying our hand at tandem bike riding around Stanley Park Vancouver, I got my first taste of the cooler climate. If sightseeing outdoors is your thing, you can see Vancouver Harbour starting at $6.67 for 3 hours (Tandem: $15.24).

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SOREL Boots available @adventuremegastore


SNOWBOARD SHOPPING:

With one month of snowboarding ahead, our next mission was selecting the perfect equipment. The best deal in town was found at ‘The Boardroom Vancouver’, where I found myself a board, boots and bindings for approximately $700.00 new (that’s less than half the RRP) – Sweeeet deal! If you like to burn money buy your gear in Whistler.

  • Awesome Beginner Board: Skate Banana
  • Rookie Error: Traditional Boot Lace, for learners like me, I’d recommend Dua Boa Lacing which saves time and effort every gondola ride.
  • http://boardroomshop.com/store/

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TRAVEL TO WHISTLER, BRITISH COLUMBIA:

Coach services from Vancouver Central to Whistler take around 2 hours. We went with Pacific Coaches and arrived in a winter wonderland.

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COLUMBIA Jacket available @adventuremegastore



WHILE IN WHISTLER

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GUINNESS BOOK OF RECORDS PEAK TO PEAK GONDOLA:

When you purchase a season pass at Whistler Blackcomb you have full access to Blackcomb and Whistler Mountains, and the gondola which connects the two. I’d recommend riding the Peak to Peak gondola at the beginning of your journey to get your bearings on the world’s longest unsupported lift, 1,427 ft high.

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SNOWMOBILE:

See Whistler’s back-country and the Rocky Mountains at speed with Snowmobile Blackcomb. All you’ll need is a driver’s licence to race around trails, alpine bowls and frozen lakes in small groups (feels like jet skiing on ice). I’d recommend bringing your own goggles and wearing ski / snowboarding apparel.

  • Wilderness Tour Experience Time: Two Hours
  • Investment: $149.00 single rider | $119.00 double rider
  • Other services: Cat ski, Dog sled, ATV, & Snowshoe
  • http://blackcombsnowmobile.com/

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FRESH TRACKS:

Set your alarm and glide through virgin powder like a knife slicing hot butter before the crowds. When booking your fresh tracks experience you’re in for buffet breaky and exclusive access to the best snow conditions.

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CAT SKI:

On a powder day (heavy soft snowfall) in January, our more experienced ski and snowboarders gave catskiing a crack! Unless you’ve a large group of proficient snowboarders you may want to give this experience a miss, at $500.00+ a pop! If you’re planning on joining strangers to push down the price, you might become frustrated with novice riders chewing up your slope time. In our opinion fresh tracks is just as good.


TRAIN WRECK:

If you follow the train tracks south of Function Junction you’ll find a train wreck in 1km. Beware of trains and wear warm clothes.

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GREEN LAKE FROZEN:

  • Best time to visit: Sunset

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ICE CAVE:

There’s a window of opportunity to find these beauties before the snow melts. Ice caves form naturally below 0 °C. You’ll soon find out if claustrophobia (extreme or irrational fear of confined places) applies to you.

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ICE SKATE:

For $5.00 you can skate Whistler Olympic Park. It is harder than it looks… We found a pro and his advice was to keep straight legs and tense your buttocks! Unfortunately, we barely graduated the beginners walking frame but it was fun nonetheless!

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BUNGEE JUMP:

With a New Year’s promise to dive into life and say yes more often, we found ourselves at Whistler Bungee. I’ve skydived twice and bungee jumping is, in my opinion, more thrilling. When your time comes to step off the bridge with nothing to hold onto, it’s all on you.

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@adventuremegastore


SCANDINAVE SPA:

Ancient cultures used spas for therapy and relaxation “Salus per aqua”… “health from water.” To test the theory, we finished our trip at Scandinave Spa. Floating half naked between spas, sauna and steam rooms we admired the stunning surrounds comfortably. S-Spa is a silent, phone and camera free haven fit for celebrities.

  • Bath access (hot springs, sauna, sun and steam rooms): $60.00 pp
  • Ultimate Deep Tissue Massage 90 minutes: $235.00 pp (includes bath access) – Our pick!
  • http://www.scandinave.com/

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(Image: Scandinave.2016)


FITNESS:

Swimming is probably the last thing you’d imagine on a ski trip, but after weeks of Poutine (google it) and Caesars (let me explain below…), you might feel like getting the heart rate up off the slopes. Stretch the muscles and relax in the pool or group fitness class.

  • Investment: $8.50 for pool access / $2.00 on Tuesdays!
  • https://www.whistler.ca/culture-recreation/recreation/meadow-park-sports-centre

 EAT & DRINK:

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  • Best Value: All ‘El Furniture’, feeds are $5.00 (surprisingly great portions)! This place is always packed and for good reason.
  • Filler Between Lunch & Dinner: ‘Crystal Lounge’, $3.00 chicken wings are a popular menu request.
  • Best Seafood: ‘La Bocca’ favourites include: Seared Salmon and Cioppino (Flavoursome seafood broth).
  • Best Vegan & Vegetarian: ‘Naked Sprout’ have the best flu shots (lifesaver), hummus wraps, chilli and coconut soups. Otherwise, you’ll find ‘Raven’s Nest’ tucked away at the base of Red Chair on Whistler Mountain, with only non-vegan menu items. Other options include: ‘The Green Moustache’ and ‘The Simple Spoon’.
  • Best Live Entertainment: At ‘Garibaldi Lift Co. Bar & Grill’, you can watch the WB Fire & Ice Show on Sunday’s.
  • Best New Years Spot: Cosy ‘Dubh Linn Gate Irish Pub’ overlooks the foot of the mountain and has THE best fireplace for a big group.
  • Local Cocktail: The basic formula for a ‘Caesar’ is pretty straightforward: clamato, worcestershire, tabasco, spices, celery salt, pepper, vodka and most importantly some serious garnish. Typical toppings: celery, olives, pickled chilli, bacon/salmon jerky and if you are lucky, deep fried chicken. Clam juice is the most crucial element, adding a more robust flavour than its American cousin – the Bloody Mary. You won’t be disappointed!
  • Best Après: You’re bound to see a familiar face at ‘Longhorns’. Enjoy the vibe and bump into friends who ski in.

Thank you for visiting www.letslivelarge.com.au … next stop Samoa! 

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@adventuremegastore

FIND BALANCE IN BUSINESS

Keep up: Portia Large has us running in Robina

For Portia Large, wearing many hats is part and parcel of running her business LMPR Group and personal brand, Let’s Live Large

At the age of 21, the successful entrepreneur became a proud property owner and media sensation, something most twenty-somethings can only dream of.

In 2018 Portia is carving out a broader niche. Set to release her first book later this year, Portia Large has become one of a new breed of internet influencers focused on helping others.

 

 

What does 2018 look like for Portia Large?  What exciting new projects for the year that you can share with us?

Aside from business as usual, 2018 is the year I publish my first book; Screenagers, A Guide to Navigate the Age We Live In.

It’s about the frantic pace we keep, the disconnected communities in which we live and the excessive time spent with screens that keeps us from being as happy and healthy as we can be. Now more than ever, it is essential to disconnect from technology and reconnect with humanity, nature and ourselves. 

 

You’ve been a leader since a young age, winning an Order of Australia for community service and environmental conservation initiatives. What advice would you give young women who want to be entrepreneurs?

Be the leading lady of your life: this means focusing on your strengths, not doing everything alone. 

With a curious mind, we meet people who build on and feed our curiosity. Ideas grow, momentum builds and eventually we can share our workload to focus on the big picture. 

By connecting with and learning from a variety of professionals, I’ve become more intuitive in business and focused on delivering win-win outcomes. 

 

You’ve founded several businesses, created a successful social media profile as well as achieving academic qualifications. In our new ‘insta-famous world’ what’s your advice to girls and young women on valuing education, rather than aiming for fame?

The most powerful women I work with all have one thing in common: They put in the time.

The truth is, whether you want to be an internet icon, leading e-commerce entrepreneur, digital nomad or scholar, there are no shortcuts to success. 

Online innovators and thought leaders use social media platforms to showcase their talent; they find their niche and work tirelessly to defend it. They craft content that tells a story and takes followers on a journey. 

Don’t mistake “insta-fame” as instant-success. The most interesting people I’ve met are life-long learners who value education and continually seek to grow their skill set. Today, everyone is competing to be well-known and my advice would be: seek to be worth knowing, rather than being well-known. 

 

What are your best tips for achieving work / life balance?

I find balance by “earthing”. Also known as “barefoot healing”, the practice involves removing your shoes and reconnecting with the earth’s surface.

Buildings, carpet and shoes, are just some of the culprits preventing us from physical grounding, optimum sleep and wellness. 

After spending hours slouched over a desk, walking on the beach barefoot is heavenly and so essential to my sanity! 

 

What’s your favourite way to relax when you get some downtime?

Surfing, scuba diving and sailing are my absolute favourite ways to unwind and find my Zen.

 

Where’s your favourite place in the Gold Coast City?

Beyond the breakers at South Stradbroke Island where I can see our city skyline but feel a million miles away.

 

What are your favourite things to do in Robina? (and where do you do them?)

After coffee with clients at Robina Town Centre, I like to get my acupuncture fix then explore the surrounding green spaces for some fresh air.

Late last year, Gold Coast City Council released plans to transform the existing Robina City Parklands into the ‘Green Heart’ Park, drawing inspiration from New York’s Central Park and London’s Hyde Park. This is a project I really hope builds further support; I for one would love to make use of the fishing platforms, walking trails and event stages. 

 

You can follow Portia on Instagram and contact LMPR Group by clicking here.

Our shoot with Portia was shot on location around Robina at Coming Home Co, The Rocket and Cheltenham Park.