Tag Archives: Hotel

Parkroyal on Pickering Hotel

21 Dec

I have nothing but praises of their frontline crews.

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I was at the Lime Restaurant to collect my logcake and instead of leaving me waiting at the counter while they prepare the cake for me, I was being invited into the restaurant to take a seat and asked if I would like to have coffee or tea!

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Then as I cooped myself comfortably on the solo sofa in front of the Christmas tree at the lobby waiting for hub to drive his car out, the sky darkened with a sudden downpour. I was flickering with my mobile phone and the space has became kind of dim but to my surprise, a frontline staff has hurried over and apologetically switched on the side table lamp to lit the area like he has read my mind!

Being a local, I probably don’t get much an opportunity to check into the hotel but given a chance, I would definitely recommend the hotel to everyone and anyone who needs an accommodation with good taste and great service!

2014-12-20 16.14.50Merry Christmas Everyone!

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Stayaction: Holiday Inn Express Orchard Singapore

16 May

I know, I know, I shouldn’t push the blame to an innocent cat but I don’t only share the same birth date as Garfield, I bear its personality trait: Procrastination. And I have procrastinated too much, and for too long. I have intended to put up the post during my stayaction but because of my procrastination, it was half written and have struck in my C drive till now.

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Anyway after the disastrous family trip to Taiwan back in September 2013, I have decided to reward myself with a little stayaction at Holiday Inn Express Orchard Singapore.

Checking into the hotel on a Friday, I have the entire afternoon on my own and I love it! Though Holiday Inn Express is nested right in the bustle of Orchard Road, my cozy room is tranquil of peace and I simply love being alone in the solace and quietness of this unfamiliar space.

Holiday Inn Express Orchard Singapore

1 front

With 221 well designed room for the frequent travelers in mind, Holiday Inn Express Orchard Singapore is more of a business hotel so there isn’t any sort of luxurious spa, posh swimming pools or swanky gym but with the whole of Orchard Road within reach, that isn’t necessary and I greatly appreciate the spacious room, comfy bedding as well as the free wifi throughout the hotel and the option of Express Start or Grab & Go Breakfast provided by the hotel.

The main lobby

The main lobby

The Breakfast Area

The Breakfast Area

My Spacious Room

My Spacious Room

My Work Corner

My Work Corner

The View From My Window

The View From My Window

My Favorite Cozy Corner

My Favorite Cozy Corner

The Fullerton Bay Hotel

28 Jun

I have passed by a huge Cai Shen with the 12 horoscope prediction for the year 2013 near the Rochor Food Centre at the beginning of the year. Being born in the year of the pig, I headed over to the pig’s section to read my fortune out of curiosity. According to the prediction, it isn’t promising for the pigs in this year of the snake but I shrug and thought, ‘Oh never mind, I am not a pig, I am a wild boar anyway.’

Time flies and taking a good half of 2013 along with it at a blink of the eyes. Looking back at the past six months, I saw myself waking up smiling on some good days and frowning at the setbacks on bad days. i have my fair share of happy and not-so-happy moments but overall life has been good and I count my blessings to enjoy a little beach holiday retreat in Phuket in March, a pack and go trip to Taiwan in April, a stayaction at Fullerton Bay Hotel in May and last weekend, took my sister and her two little ones on their first trip to Genting Highlands in Malaysia.

Singapore is a tiny island and it probably takes less than an hour to drive from one end to the other but Singapore is also a beautiful island with lots and lots of hotels peppered within that makes escaping from the usual scene and holidaying at our own backyard very tempting. I love stayaction and have greatly enjoyed the hospitality of Wangz Hotel, Park Regis Hotel and Orchard Hotel but then stayaction can sometimes be even more expensive than hopping over the neighboring country for the weekend and thus, I especially treasured this precious opportunity indulging the weekend at The Fullerton Bay Hotel.

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the walk towards the hotel

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view from the rooftop pool

The Fullerton Bay Hotel
Strategically located within the CBD, The Fullerton Bay Hotel  is being named one of the World’s Best Hotels by Travel + Leisure USA and the Best New Business Hotel Worldwide by Business Traveller UK magazine. Stylishly built alongside the spectacular view of the Marina Bay Waterfront, we were pampered luxuriously by the hospitality of the hotel.  We simply love our plush and  spaciously comfortable room and especially enjoyed the quiet moments watching sunrise and sunset by our balcony that overlooked the glittering water of the river.

With Marina Bay Sands, Marina Square, Suntec City, The Esplanade and Raffles City all conveniently around the corner, shopping and other activities outside the hotel vicinity are aplenty but who would want to leave the comfort of the hotel when there is a luxuriously self-contained room, an immaculate rooftop gym, swimming pool and jacuzzi pools that offer a glorious city scrape view, plush restaurants for exquisite dining experience and wireless Internet access anywhere within the hotel all awaiting for your access? Seriously we don’t and we have enjoyed every single minute of staying in.

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love the bed!

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fun time

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Clifford Restaurant

With the grandeur of very high ceiling and plush interiors, Clifford luxuriously serves European, French and Western Cuisine with a view overlooking the waterfront and we have the pleasure of enjoying a set dinner and breakfast here.

Our set dinner had scrumptiously consists of:
Bread basket – besides the warm mini baguette, we love the generous portion of tuna spread. 
Appetizer: Lobster & Scallop Carpaccio w Lime Black Truffle Dressing & Fragrant Shiso –  the thinly sliced lobster was good but the raw scallop takes time to appreciate.
Soup: Soupe d’Onions Gratinee – a rich and tasty traditional rich onion soup with melted gruyere cheese croutons. 
Main: Signature Duck Confit with truffle potato mousseline, black garlic sautéed broad beans field greens
Desert: Lemon Tart with Lemon cream, black berries, Italian meringue
Petits Fours:  Kueh Lapis, Mini Macarons, Black Sesame Chocolate and TWG Tea 
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The gastrointestinal dining experience aside, my husband was extremely impressed by the attentiveness of one really sweet and beautiful waitress. This dynamic Korean lady was one of the waitress serving our section during dinner the night before and we were quite surprised to see her doing her round during breakfast the next morning. With the restaurant almost full and so many guests to handle, we didn’t expect that her to remember us, yet she had cheerfully stopped by our table for a quick chat and greeted us by our first name!

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the beautiful Korean waitress – hubby’s nomination of the best service award

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the night is still young..

The Spa Artisan

No stayaction is complete without a pampering spa retreat and we were blessed with a couple’s Japan Spa Journey at The Spa Artisan over at the historical The Fullerton Hotel. With fresh plants lining the walls of the hallway and soothing music piping at the chic and cozy lounge area coupled with the skillful hands of the masseuses, it is little wonder why The Spa Artisan has been awarded the Best Luxury Boutique Spa from the World Luxury Spa Awards 2013.

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After choosing the essential oil for our massage, our 2.5 hours Japan Spa Journey began with feet soak, a head to toe scrub, shower before falling asleep under the healing touch of the therapist to conclude a memorable weekend at the hotel.

Phuket, here I come!

9 Mar

It has been quite a while since our last stayaction. 11 months to be precise. That was when mum had recuperate for a month after her operation so I thought it will be good to bring her out of the house but she had developed high fever the very same night that we have checked into Orchard Hotel and that has made me feel bad till now.

Anyway, the reason I say stayaction is because apart from a wasted trip to Phuket Town which my hubby had followed the other tourists and alighted at the closed market, we have basically had hang around our resort and its nearby vicinity, particularly the stretch of Patong Beach and on the streets.

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Phuket, here I come!
Upon touching down, I was amused by the immigration officer who tried to impressed me by saying “I LOVE YOU” in Chinese when he saw my EAT, PRAY, LOVE passport cover.  The touting taxi service outside the arrival hall was a little overwhelming but what has irked me a little was how one operator followed us and tried to convince my hubby that the Airport bus to Phuket Town does not operate on Sundays! Then as we wait for the bus, I witnessed how a tour operator harshly told two Indian tourists off because they have
delayed the group. At that instance, the image of Thais being warm, gentle, polite and friendly vanished into that hot, smoky air of Phuket. However, when I realized that I have left my LEVI’S LADY sunglasses at the checkpoint counter and dashed back into the arrival hall, the security at the gatehelped to stop the human traffic and allowed me raced against the flow to retrieve my sunnies! At that point, the good impression of Thais came back and I though, hmm..the people here aren’t bad after all!

While hanging around waiting for the bus, I approached the information and was told about the mini-bus service to Patong Beach. It sets to go with 10pax in a vehicle and costs 180 baht per person. It seemed reasonable as opposed to what the taxi operators asking of 800 baht but the catch, that we soon realized on the vehicle, was that it stopped halfway at its tour agency and the agency staff would sat us down and tried to sell us their tour packages individually. Not quite ethical if you asked me but the rest of the journey was a smooth ride. The passing streets from the mini-bus’s window somehow reminded me of Bali and my hubby couldn’t agree more on that.

Patong Beach

Patong Beach
Located at about 15km from the Phuket town, Patong Beach is the most developed beach in Phuket. It is an interesting sight to see hotels after hotels, new and old resorts, little tour booths dotted all over the place, make-shift massage tents by the beach, rows and rows of tuk tuk, motor cycles and other vehicles lining on the street touting for passengers and Ang Mohs peppered everywhere. A lot of them were Aussies and French as well and you could find them lying on the hotel loungers, sun worshipping at the beach, walking on the streets, riding a rented motorcycle and particularly everywhere, all looking uniformly blushed and having a good time.

blue sky

Look at the clear blue sky and the white sandy beach!

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a neat row of tuk tuk along the beach

vehicle for rent

A leg for rent, anyone?

massage by the beach

Massage, Manicure, Hair Braiding and more!

The sky was blue, the sand was glittering, the water was clear but then the heat was killing! Being a sweat baby, I was perpetually drenched in my own sweat the moment I stepped out of our hotel and while I admired those lobster red folks having their time under the sun, I, on the other hand, would be miserably wriggling around to get whatever shelter that I could find but the consolation is that Patong is much more than just the sun, the sand and the sea.

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by the sea

Sure, the daytime activities with the water-sports and all are primarily centered on this 3km beach, the streets however, would magically come to life when the night curtain falls. More people of different colors are flooding in by now convincing me that I am not the only one who’s afraid of the sun after all.  Seafood fresh from the ocean are piling high on ice awaiting to be served for dinner/supper, the night market is up and Patong’s liveliest party zone, Soi Bangla is closed to traffic and ready for action! By then many of those beach goers would be chilling over ice-cold beers at the pubs and the bars would be completing for business with jamming music, exotic performances and way-over-the-top ladyboys shows and the party goes on…

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A Russian dancer showcasing her move on the second floor of the bar

Bar top dancer

Hot babe or ladyboy? You decide..

While on a bumpy ride to town with the bus trembling at snail speed and warm air ruffled my hair, my mind somehow channeled back to the tsunami in 2004 and the thought of the tragedy destroying the town and causing many deaths and homeless sent a shiver down my spine.  When the news broke out, my heart went all out to the ill-fated town but initiating a donation drive within the office was the only thing I could do at that point of time and I regretted for not doing more for the survivors. People don’t talk about it anymore and it is good to see that the strenuous recovery has left no trace of the tragedy and the town is bustling with more activities and even vibrant nightlife than ever.

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The Phuket – Patong bus

Burasari Resort
The driver had alighted us at the main road and with directions to our
resort which was a short distance away from the beach. In any case, most of the hotels and resorts are within the vicinity of the beach.

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Our welcome drink at the resort

balcony view

A view of the resort from our balcony

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A cozy corner of the restaurant

poolside bar

Another cozy corner – at the poolside bar

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Also at the pool side bar

The resort consists of three levels and the fortunate guests on the ground level suites would get the privilege of accessing the two outdoor swimming pools and sun loungers directly from their terrace! How nice is that! But I am not complaining though, because I am just as contented with our spacious room on the 3rd floor. Besides the regular facilities and the huge King size bed, I was delighted to find a large daybed at our balcony that overlooks the swimming pool and my hubby must have had a great eye candy feast with the view of nearly bared bodies lazing on the sun loungers everyday. The mirror-tile decorated bathroom is really cool, it is well-spaced, bright and I really appreciate the bathtub for a good soak after a hot day out under the sun.

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I love the bed, so big and comfy!

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The day bed – hubby’s favorite corner

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Bathtub – I get to soak and watch TV through the blinds..

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Apart from the faulty kettle in our room, almost everything else was perfect and it was very thoughtful of the hotel to grant us 2 wifi access so we didn’t have to wrestle over the internet connection.

While I couldn’t say that the hotel’s breakfast spread is sumptuous, it
does have a good variety to cater for all. As for me, I am happy to have porridge with an egg omelette everyday, as always.

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Porridge – they called in rice soup with prawn 🙂

Service wise, the majority of the crews, especially those from the
housekeeping team have fared better than those handling the reception. Besides the chirpy  ‘Sawadee Ka’ greetings whenever we passed by a staff, the guard at the entrance has even volunteered to help to take a picture of us without being asked! Anyway, we don’t care if the reception were friendly or not but it pissed me a little when one of the reception staff has granted us to check out at 1pm but at a quarter after 12pm, we got a call from them claiming that they have guests checking at 2pm and insisted that we have to vacant the room immediately for housekeeping.

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Bye Burasari, Bye Phuket!

Bye Phuket!
Since we have to check out at 12 and our flight was at 9pm, we decided to kill time (alright, it was because I have wanted to save some money too), we took the bus to Phuket town bus terminal for the airport bus. Unlike the bustling Patong Beach where the lanes are narrow but flooding with human traffics and vehicles, the roads around the bus terminal are wide but the streets were empty. The shops were closed and the terminal itself was dim and vacant.

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The almost empty bus terminal

While waiting for the bus, we walked over to Royal City Hotel for a quick munch and perhaps we were both hungry, we simultaneously opted for grains.  His choice was Seafood Fired Rice and mine was Beef Fried Rice but we both felt that the fried rice from this restaurant was undoubtedly the most delicious proper meal we had in Phuket. Oh, by the way, our first meal in Phuket has happened to be fried rice too and that was Pineapple Seafood Fried Rice + Seafood Tom Yam Gong + Coconut Drink.

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beef fried rice

Due to the infrequency of the airport bus service, we have to take the one at 4.30pm and reached the airport before 6pm but besides a bite at Burger King, there wasn’t much left for us to do except waiting and wasting time away.

phuket bus timing

The Phuket – Airport Bus Timing

I tried to catch a little nap but my mind was flown to Kalim, the northern end of Patong Bay that I have regretted not visiting for its magnificent view of sunset.

sleeping at terminal

Already dreaming of the next trip at the airport..

Well, perhaps the next time..Till then, Phuket, I gonna miss you!

The Best Deals in Singapore

31 Aug

Groupon Singapore

BigDeal.SG

Thao Dien Village – Saigon, Vietnam

13 Jun

Escaping from the bustle of city crowds, we have had a lovely stay at this only hotel and spa resort in Ho Chi Minh City – Thao Dien Village.  This colonial French manor has offered us a memorable hideout with the most romantic setting along the banks of Saigon River.

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Thao Dien Village in our eyes..

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Our self contained Art Suite..

Room Facilities includes: Riverview, King size bed, Minibar, Shower, Bath, Safety Deposit Box, LCD TV, Telephone, Air Conditioning, Balcony, Shared Bathroom, Bathroom Amenities, Toilet, Bathroom, Satellite TV, Cable TV, Tea/Coffee Maker, Hairdryer, Bathrobe, Refrigerator, Work Desk, DVD Player and room Slippers…

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Some of the food we tasted..

breakfasts..

lunches..

ice creams..

romantic dinner by the river..

Recess Time @ Hotel Re!

2 Apr

Recess Time!

Hotel Re! is undoubtedly a rare gem in our local scene. It is refurbished from a primary school and boosted a retro theme. Very 80s and the location is a nice hideaway from bustle of city life at Pearl’s Hill.

Apart from the free parking, interesting theme and deco, the food at their restaurant, Re!Fill is equally irresistible and out of their six different themed set meal, our family’s favorite is Monday Menu: The Oriental Set.

For this hearty Oriental set meal, the gastronomy journey begins with 3 exquisitely arranged Appetizers. Served beautifully in a rectangular plate, it consisted of one seasoned and utterly delicious Baby Octopus, a piece of Sweet Potato and Taro Fritter and a mildly flavored Egg Foo Yong that reminds me of good old home cooking.

Served up next was the Braised Shark’s Fin Soup with Crabmeat soup. I must say that for just $20.80 a set meal, the soup by itself is already worth the value. It is simply not the kind blend starchy soup with sub-standard crabmeat stick that most value-meals tend would offer, this delicately flavored soup is rich, and the ingredients are aplenty. There are mushroom shreds, bits and pieces of real crab-meat and surprisingly, chunks of braised shark’s fin! It is ultimately my favorite dish from the set!

When comes to the Main Course, there is an option of Salted Egg Prawn with Garlic Fried Rice and Sautéed Asparagus or Wok-Fried Duck Breast with Olive Vegetable with Garlic Fried Rice and Sautéed Asparagus. For myself, I greatly enjoyed the Salted Egg Prawns. Cholesterol aside, these fresh and succulent prawns tasted heavenly with well fragranced of salted egg and butter. My fifteen-month-old little niece however, seemed to appreciate the Garlic Fried Rice more and she finished the entire plate of the rice all on her own to our amazement.

The Wok-Fried Duck Breast isn’t too bad if the meat slices could be more tender and not so dry.

Ending the meal with a sweet note, our desert for the day comprise of a sinful scoop of Vanilla Ice-Cream, Mango Pudding, Agar-Agar Jelly and delightful cream puff.

The themed set meal served by Re!Fill:
Monday: Oriental
Tuesday: Italian
Wednesday: Japanese
Thursday: Western
Friday: Thai
Saturday & Sunday: Nonya
Menu, click here

Verdict:
Ambience: 5 stars
Food: 5 Stars
Service: 5 Stars 

Address:
Re!Fill @ Hotel Re! Pte Ltd
175A Chin Swee Road
Singapore 169879
Reservation: 6827 8228
Opening hours: 7am to 11pm daily

Kanishka Villas

19 Mar

Another pleasant stay in Bali: Kanishka Villas

With a private pool, sundeck with loungers, two spacious bedrooms with en-suite bathroom, wide open dining area, a fully equipped kitchen and a relaxing hall that is equipped with large sofas, 42 inch television, sound system, dvd, and high speed internet access, Kanishka Villas is undoubtedly the finest vacation stay that we have ever had besides Maxims Genting!

Pool Side

Activity Area

Open Dining

Fresh Fruit Juice

A Hearty Breakfast

Luxurious Bed with Jim Thompson Fabric Furnishing

en-suite bathroom

Rain Forest Shower

Aria Luxury Villa & Spa

18 Mar

A little heaven: Aria Luxury Villa & Spa

After stepping out of the airport, we went directly to the pick up area where it was flooded with drivers holding signboards of their guest names. Our villa driver was late and we get a little restless after a few rounds of fruitless searching among the crowd. Luckily, the traffic from the airport to Semiyak was pretty smooth on that day and it only took us about 25 minutes to reach the villa.

What surprised us was that he stopped the car in a small lane and we did not see any posh lobby that we have expected, instead we were greeted by a villa’s male staff at the lane and walked to our villa.

The mediocre entry was quite beyond our fanciful expectations but the minute our villa door was opened, that little disappointment immediately turned into astonishment!

Gosh! A private pool and an open living concept that I have always longed for – this is unquestionably heaven on earth!

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walkway to heaven..

on top of the world..


Hotel Re!

24 Dec

Re!Fill is Hotel Re!’s flagship restaurant that offers an all day casual dinning in a 80’s retro themed setting.

Apart from the ala-carte menu, Re!Fill also serves a different theme set menu everyday at a reasonable price at: SGD18.80++ and all dishes are prepared with no pork and lard.

When we were there on Christmas Eve, we ordered the Re!Fill’s Festival Set Meal at $23.80++ and was served with a hearty meal of bread, scallop salad, clear soup, turkey & ham or steak as main course, a variety of desserts and a scoop of ice-cream and coffee or tea.

The meal began with an ordinary starter of lightly toasted plain bread with a cube of soft butter and it was the next dish that served on the table that wowed us over. The portion of the salad may be small but rather than the usual boring lettuce with thousand island sauce, the Re!Fill’s exquisite salad offers an assorted green with cherry tomato and melt-in-your mouth scallops!

Up next was the clear soup that contains ample bits of mushrooms, carrot and celery among other ingredients. The soup may look plain but it has a comforting taste of the home-cooked flavor that made me yearn for more.

My main course, Turkey & Ham was simply delicious! The turkey slices were tender, the ham was rich in flavor and I especially loved the mashed potatoes served by the side. My companion’s Steak was thick and chunky, and tasted tender and juicy. When he requested for a little extra sauce for the beef half way through the meal, the waitress promptly bought him half a bowlful and attentively came back to checked if he still required more top-up later.

Like the rest of the dishes, the dessert were also artfully arranged and served. The mango mousse was not too sweet, the chocolate brownie was rich and melt-in-the-mouth softly, and the strawberry flavored ice cream was beautifully decorated with a dainty quarter slice of strawberry.

On top of the good food, the service is greatly remarkable too. The staffs were warm, friendly and very efficient. Plates were cleared fast and dishes were served promptly. Parking at this lovely hilltop hotel is the complimentary too.

My Re!Fill – Turkey Festive Set Meal – With a little goodness of everything at $23.80++…I am spoilt!!

steak was great too..

 

 

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