Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Primula Beach Hotel in Kuala Terengganu

We spent Eidhul Adha, 10 Zulhijah 1436 Islamic calendar year, which falls on 24th September 2015 in my home town in Kelantan. It was like a reunion with the rest of our big family members while attending Fatihah's wedding on Friday, 25th September 2015. So, therefore I suddenly thought about spending a night in Kuala Terengganu just to break the long journey through a heavy festival traffic into 2 parts when we return back to Kuala Lumpur.  

Primula Beach Hotel, view from the beach at night

On Saturday, 26th September 2015 at 5.15pm, we checked in at Primula Beach Hotel after a last minute tele-booking when we were about 2 hours away on the road to the hotel. We left my family home in Kg Kuau, Bachok, Kelantan at 12.30noon. Primula Beach Hotel is established in 1984 as an international class business resort. When the hotel was open, I was in Form 4 (Primary School) at Terengganu Technical School when the hotel was open. The nearest I've been at that time was the adjacent public beach, "Batu Buruk Beach" about a kilometer away.

Beautiful entrance to our room no. 1114, seated on 11th Floor
Reminiscing memories of 30 years ago, I told my family that the only thing that I could afford was admiring, dreaming 1 day I would be able to enter Primula Beach Resort private hotel. It could be a jackpot if I could stay a night in the so called luxurious hotel once in my life time. Alas, here I am at their deluxe room hotel at 11th floor, room 14 facing sea view. Having been to many other five star hotels in the country and abroad, I was quick to rank this hotel as an average ranking, 3 star maybe, in my head. This acclaimed resort is said as one of the famous landmark due to its unique beach front is just minutes away from the city centre. They are placed in the most strategic locations where the business hubs are and places of attractions not only to tourist, local and foreign but to investor and business associate. Many refers this hotel as the best in town, deserving their 5 star rank.

Deluxe room with 1 extra bed for the 4 of us
In their welcoming note, the management and staff said that guest has made a right choice choosing to stay in their place of stay of natural beauty and culture. Indeed, I absolutely in agreement with them. Terengganu is blessed with a diverse landscape ranging from pristine beaches, exotic islands, virgin jungles and lakes. There is so much to see as a tourist to this place to start with. Among famous shopping places and sightseeing attraction with Kuala Terengganu range are as follows:-
  • Batu Buruk Beach, next door within walking distance
  • Cultural Centre
  • Fotress Bukit Puteri
  • Handicraft Centre
  • Istana Maziah (ceremonial Palace)
  • State Museum complex
Pools's night view
We chose to have dinner in the hotel itself. There's only two restaurant in house. You may choose Bayu Restaurant or Anjung Bistro where both shared the same kitchen. We preferred to dine by the sea, outside the courtyard of Anjung Bistro, listening to live band, breathing the sea breeze. Simply order the foods from any of the restaurant's menu as the waitress shall deliver the meal to wherever you seat. We strongly recommend for you to take advantage of good weather (no rains) to experience our dining ambiance. Nasrul had chicken chop, hubby preferred for a local dish Thai Fried rice whilst I took chef's recommendation of Prawn Curry Mee and grilled sea fish which we shared with 2 stray cats. For dessert there's sago melaka and sticky rice durian. It was a perfect night.

Hubby was focusing on taking my photo
Nasrul enjoying his dinner
After diner, Nasrul and I took a stroll along the beach. It was a pity that the haze has covering the beautiful sky. As a result, the moon looks blurry and the stars all being covered by the haze. Our friends in Kuala Lumpur has reported how terribly bad was the haze situation in KL city on 26th September 2015 which forced people to only stay indoor. The next morning, Naim accompanied me for a walk at the beach after our breakfast. The restaurant was crowded with guests due to festival season. We enjoyed the tasty meal, especially local famous cuisine "Nasi Dagang" at our own relaxing pace.

The haze situation at 8.30 am
Beautiful mural wall at hotel car park with a new water breaker development next door. Photo was snapped from the 11th floor, our room balcony

Please take note that the hotel management provides a shuttle bus to Pasar Kedai Payang for the guest for wishes to shop. The shuttle usually depart from the hotel at 9am and will pick-up at 12 noon with another trip at 3pm. Pasar Kedai Payang is a famous shopping complex houses both a wet market and a handicraft bazaar that is great for souvenir hunting. That is the place where you can get all locals prouct, ie. batik silk and hand woven songket. The wet market offers fresh food and local delicacies whilst inside the handicraft bazaar there's rows of shop selling other locals handicraft beside batik and songket. I opined that a visit to Pasar Payang and to Kuala Terengganu, a capital city of Terengganu State is a must. Please give Primula Hotel Beach a place to stay in your visit. I'm sharing the hotel compound before we checked out and bid our farewell. 

Inside Anjung Bistro where we chose to have breakfast

Beautiful hut by the beach side for hotel guests
Pool facing Anjung Bistro where we dined a night before
A settled landscaping within pool compound
There's aMalay traditional "Gamelan" dance/singing show at the hotel that you may enjoy to watch
Terengganu is a famous spot for Sea Turtle, hence the hotel is full with turtle's deco
View from the road at the entrance gate
Last photo before we bid our farewell 

Friday, September 18, 2015

Cameron Highland - Mossy Forest

Date of visit: 20th February 2015

Malaysia is indeed having quite a numerous places of attractions to visits. It doesn't matter whether you who love natures or seek for modern creatures, are most welcome to my country to see for yourselves. Mossy forest in Cameron is one of the many things that I didn’t know existed in my beloved country, worth the visit. I discovered about these beautiful nature when my ex-Karachi buddy who happened to explore the jungle shared her trips photo on her Facebook. During Chinese New Year long break this year, I forced everyone to go for family vacation in Cameron Highland. However, not all could follow, hubby had his tennis matches whilst Naim was in Penang Island with his group buddy.

Nasrul in Mossy jungle with all foreigners
Seeing this greenery space outer world made it worth the trip
We drove all the way from Kuala Lumpur on Chinese New Year eve and stayed over for 1 night in Century Pines Resort. Four of us were having a nice CNY dinner in Rosette Cafe. It was a wonderful, wonderful trip though 2 of my family member were missing. I get the hotel we stayed at to book for a day tour covering most of Cameron’s attraction, which include a visit to Mossy Forest. To my disappointment, the guide took us there for short time as compared to what my friend has discovered while jungle trekking, solely a full day surrounded with only mossy environment. You may see how happy she was in below photo. I must go again, I mean during next time to explore on full adventure in mossy forest by hiking. Any volunteer???

Madame Tham & husband, both my ex-buddy in Karachi
This boy looks very happy that day, I'm truly blessed
The mossy forest is a natural environment that grows not only at the highest elevations of Cameron Highlands but at any other mountain ranges across Malaysia. At such heights, low level clouds in the sky driven by winds, blanket the forests with constant mist and moisture - creating an ideal biotope for moss, ferns, lichen and orchids. You may view what it meant from my shared photo in this entry. This moist tropical evergreen forest is also a rich repository for a varied set of montane creatures, encompassing insects, snakes, frogs, birds and mammals unique to this chilly atmosphere. Visitors can explore the mossy forest through a boardwalk 2km before the peak of Gunung Brinchang, beginning from a clearing along the main road. The driver took us all the way up in the van using the only available winding and narrow road built by the State Government. 

Bukit Brinchang route to reach Mossy Forest
Take notice of the beautiful pitcher plant

The series of wooden platforms winds for about 150m through the mossy forest, but is slippery when wet, though there are rope railings for a light measure of safety. In this chilly environment, stunted stumps, wrinkled leaves and gnarled branches of oak trees clump together, forming dense crowns that portrude furiously from the ground like mushrooms. We were lucky as our driver cum guide has took us to the highest point to enjoy the top scenery where the authority provide a small place for tourist to snap photos. One of the American boy took my photo, below.

Once inside the forest, take time to look around you carefully, observe the rich layers of moss that drape the tree trunks and butteresses, infusing them with a soft, green appearance. Meanwhile, vines, orchids, pitcher plants and other fascinating epiphytes (a plant that grows on another plant) hang loosely from the canopy, perched silently on branches and stems in this chillingly quiet labyrinth. It gives you a feeling as you were in a movie Avatar. Venturing below the boardwalk, you must carefully watch over your step on the forest floor. You will soon discover its moist peat-like texture, each step leaving deep water-filled imprints on the soil. At the end of the walk, a trail starts towards Gunung Irau, the highest mountain in Cameron Highlands.

Yes, Nazhif was following us too

A proper trail for jungle trekking is vide Gunung Irau which route I shall seriously follow if I am permitted by the Almighty (meaning health, company etc) to venture the nature in full blast in the future. As the tour was really short due to the fact that we have many than 1 place to cover, I was forced to leave these beautiful, cozy jungle by asking Nazhif to snap my photo imitating Jane of the Jungle... LOL!

Thank you for reading. I must say that a visit to this Mossy Forest is a must. It's worth your effort, time and money.

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Flowers in Cameron Highland

Date: 20th February 2015

Before I started writing about Cameron Highland's adventure, I wish to share some of attractive photo shots (flowers for a time being) while following a paid tour guide. To save time, we managed to cover so many attractions in Cameron by including ourselves with the travel agent itinerary where we were the only Malaysian beside the driver. It was a fun day surrounded with teenagers from USA, a mainland China couple, an Indian couple and a lovely Moroccan couple. First, let's enjoy the views of the flowers. Cameron is a main flowers supplier to Kuala Lumpur. In here you may get all sorts of flowers at a very cheap prices. 

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

A letter from Nazhif

I just open this morning the letter that Nazhif left before he boarded the plane at 0945 yesterday morning. He wrote this;

Dear Family,

First of all, I would like to say thank you so much for sending me to the airport and to papa and mama, thank you for sending me to Scotland.

Dear Papa,

Thank you for being the most awesome and understanding father to a son. You always have been there to buy all the stuff that I requested. Papa, I hope you manage to finish our dream house in 1-3 years time. Knowing you work so hard makes me wanted to achieve more. During my time in GMI, one of my key motivation to success was you. I am so proud of you started off from extending (your business) to building a bungalow house now. Super proud of you.

Dear Mama,

All my life, I had look up to you as a role model. All my life I wanted to beat your success, knowing you as a women in a men's world achieving so much things make me wanted to achieve and doing well in whatever I do in studies or working. I hope 1 day, you could tell me that you are proud of me and I hope to do well in my studies because I don't even want to make you disappointed like you did during my SPM time. I still remember how disappointed you were, and I promised myself since then to always work hard to make you proud of me. I am so proud to be your son. Sorry for being ungrateful, stubborn, always picking up a fight with you. I really hate when we fight. I felt such a bad son. Sorry for all the fight that we had gone through. Without you, this dream of mine going to UK wouldn't be possible. Thank you for being such an amazing mother. I love you always ma.

Dear Kakak,

Tolonglah jaga kereta (please look after your car), please be more responsible. You have been in so many hardship. I am still proud to call you a sister even without .....,  lol. I will miss our movie time and also the time when you suddenly came into my room to have a chat.

Dear Naim,

I wish you all the best in life. Thank you for being such an awesome brother. I hope you will succeed in modelling and in whatever you do. Thank you for being such a good brother. I really am proud of what you have become. Thank you bro, all the best. See you soon.

Dear Nasrul,

Adik, even though I always bully you, deep down it hurt me when I make you mad. Thank you for all the thing that you have helped. Good luck in MSU and please focus on your study. Make our parents proud of you.

Lastly, please listen to Altimet feat Tomok song "Aku Tahu". I dedicated this song to my beautiful, loving and supportive family.

Dear Nazhif,

We wish you a happy journey and best endeavor in coping up a life as a foreigner and a student. We love you always.. xoxo

Monday, September 14, 2015

Farewell lunch with Nazhif at Ichiban Boshi

Nazhif is taking a morning flight today to Glasgow to pursue his study in Mechanical Engineering. He will be there, in University of Glasgow for 4 years. Yesterday was his last day at home, hence we spent the last day by taking him out to Pavilion for lunch and a quick shopping for Naim. Pavilion is our family favourite place to hang out, where we mostly there for food.

Nazhif's choice "Sushi Moria Take"
Initially we were heading towards Kuala Lumpur City for another favorite restaurant of ours, Korean's BBQ and lots of kimchis in "Kung Jung". It was too bad as the restaurant is closed on Sunday. Thereafter, we tried a Korean Village in Ampang whereby most of Korean restaurants and groceries can be found. The village is more or less stood as a mini Korean town. Sadly, the only halal restaurant was closed, leaving us so frustrated to the fact that why oh why it's difficult for us to enjoy a nice halal ingredient Korean foods in Kuala Lumpur. I sighed heavily with no words to utter my disappointment.

My son turn part time model Naim pose with a beautiful plate that I admire, his vape and wasabi
We then decided to turn back to Pavilion but as soon as we arrived in Pavilion, we changed our mind from having a Korean meal to Japanese meal. We found a restaurant name "Ichiban Boshi" located at Ground Floor (shop locater 1.40.00). Apparently Ichiban Boshi is another International Food outlet existed not only in Malaysia but also in our neighbor country, Singapore as well as in Australia. This place offering an authentic Japanese meals, all sorts, to be precise about for those who crave for sushi, udon, raw fish sashimi (my favourite), cawan mushi etc etc.

The staff are extremely friendly and helpful. The supervisor's in-charge even offering his help to snap the above photo when he saw we started snapping food photo. In return, we told him that we were there for a farewell lunch as someone is leaving soon. Argh you might wondering where is my husband. He was fighting at the tennis court since Saturday (clay court we were told), battling for his semi final. When we return home, we saw he brought back 2 Wilson sports sandal for winning in the semi final game. He lost in a final match anyway. 

Chef's and my recommendation "Salmon Belly Shio"
Nasrul opted for a chicken menu (he always prefer chicken than seafood or beef) whilst Syahirah was having Gyoza Udon due to her fever. She was not feeling well the whole day and was laying down in a cozy restaurant while waiting for our meal to arrive. The ambiance and the whole decoration is a real Japanese restaurant typical clean look. It compliment the whole mood and the meal that we opted. 

Chix Katsu Toji was Nasrul's choice
After we have cleared the food that we ordered, we went to look for Timberland shoes but none is to Naim's taste. At his request, we agreed to head towards Lot 10 Shopping centre for more shopping in H&M outlet. Passing through the now famous Jalan Bukit Bintang has brought so much old memory to me. The old Jalan Bukit Bintang has been revamp into something so very much different look from what we used to see 20 years ago. You may click the link that I shared in above line to see what is Jalan Bukit Bintang has to offer, especially after dawn. It was told that the choice of nightlife in here is endless. After dak entertainment is what Jalan Bukit Bintang street is famous about. It mean that they hosting a unique themed nights including live bands.   .

What happened in H&M fitting room ... max boredom
The street become lively when the evening is approaching. This is the place where the foreigner, i.e. the tourist favorite spot, especially to the Arabs. The street is surrounded with high end shopping mall, i,e, Pavilion, Lot 10, Starhill and Bukit Bintang. Most of the award winning lounges, karakoe centres, rooftop nightclubs may be found within the neighborhood. For those living outside Malaysia may find the link helpful to decide where to stay, what to buy and what to do when in Kuala Lumpur, my lovely city.

Someone was so kind to treat a Korean ice-cream to his sibling. Guess who?

Jalan Bukit Bintang walkway street view
It was passed 6.30pm when we decided to have some donuts takeaway at Jco where I snapped below photo and called it off. Later that night, we went to Aliff Bistro for mama's food.

Last stop for Donuts takeaway, Indonesian donuts franchise outlet