Got Spa?

KL Weekend Break: 3rd April ~ 6th April 2009

Day 4: Monday, 6th April, '09

I always liked Spas. Since my first visit many years ago, and since THAT grand spa in Bali two years ago, I’m always in the look-out for spas. But I’m never a member of any spas even though many friends asked me to join, and join never joined even though they offered massive discounts too. Why? I think the spa centers that came across me are usually those where many people go (and I HATE bumping into people I know at these places. I dunno why. Shy guaa? Hhaha). And also, many spas eventually I found out that they offer many “extra services”, as the common term go. Not that appropriate right?

So I’m still in the look-out, and then I found out about ‘Ayurvedium Medispa’. Ok, that doesn’t sound right, abit weird the name, no? Well, it’s because it has an Indian influence to it. And I mean literally mean it has an Indian influence to it. So, if you go to this place to get a body massage, most probably you will get an Indian masseur. That’s because the techniques and philosophy hails from India. I got no problems with that as long as the message is good and I walk out of there feeling relaxed and satisfied right? If you got a problem with that, well, this place ain’t for you buddy.

So this place offers foot reflex massages, body stress relieve therapy massages, massages with cucumbers, papaya, aloevera, oranges, lemon skin, rambutans, durians, you name you they got it (oklah maybe the last few I bluff one) and then they got this super cool ‘hotbed anti-oxidant rejuvenation room’ which I’ve yet to try. Soon soon soon, I’ll book one room for myself heh heh heh…

So on my last day in KL over that weekend, I just have to try this place out. As mentioned already, I’ve been eyeing for a spa place to go to since for ages already. I was at the Gardens, and did a walk-about along that floor with the yoga places and fancy saloons, and spotted ‘Ayurvedium’. As I was totally stressed out from work, I did an upper body stress relieve therapy. Basically it’s upper body massage lah. No fancy cucumbers, papayas or oranges, just a good old-fashioned massage session to try this place out. And I have to say I was very impressed. The guy (yes guy) really had the strength to loosen those stressed muscles, and in addition to the oils that was applied all over me (sounds kinky but there’s nothing of that sort, honestly) I was in a complete state relaxation for that 1 hour. I can’t really describe in detail how it feels, you just have to experience it for yourself ;)

After the one hour, there’s a classy private washroom to allow to you to shower off the oils on the body. The pampering continues here as many perfumed toiletries is at your disposal. Heck, even the towels smell nice (but, I think it’s always better to use your own towel just for hygiene sake). After all that has been done, they brought me to a waiting room to rest further, accompanied by a nice and warm cup of chamomile tea while a little glass of wine waits at the side too. Nice touch, and even nicer is the view from the room overlooking the whole Gardens. Fitting end to a fancy and quite classy spa session I think.

I ended up signing on as a member of ‘Ayurvedium’ spa. Upon signing, it offered RM150 worth of free treatments which is a pretty good deal. As most probably I’ll be back anyway, I might as well sign up. And yes, just by flashing the membership card, a additional 30% discount is offered on selected treatments. Why not right?

Located at The Gardens and Starhill, from that experience I really think it’s worth a try. Enjoy… I know I will ;)

Of Food and well..more food

KL Weekend Break: 3rd ~ 6th April, 2009

Day 3: Sunday, 5th April '08

SL was finally free and so we decided to meet up for lunch. There was only one thing on my mind that moment and it was ‘char siew’ or roasted pork rice. Call it a craving, but I missed PJ Old Town’s famous ‘Kie Kee char siew’ rice terribly. If you don’t know of this place, it’s located inside of PJ Old Town’s food court. This food court is opposite the bus terminal (I’m not sure if the bus terminal is still operating anot tho haha) and it’s right next to the wet market. Google it up for better directions and map. Anyway, the ‘char siew’ rice is without doubt my favorite (although many would argue that their chicken rice tastes better, but I digress!!) The ‘char siew’ skin is as usual crispy (i.e. not too hard or too soft) and the meat, tender and not too salty. Add it with a dash of their sauce and the combination is just perfect. Furthermore, it’s very affordable as one serving is charged in the region of RM3.50. They don’t just serve roasted pork or chicken rice as their curry chicken is quite an offering too. So when your wallet is tight or when you are just craving for simple good food, give this place a try!!

Stuffed with crispy deliciousness, we wanted to unwind and decided on some coffee. We can’t really decide where to go, so we headed to for my favorite Old Town’ kopitiam spot at ‘The Village’ in ‘Bangsar South’. If you are not sure where it is, it’s nearby the ‘University LRT Station’ and Bukit Kerinchi. Furthermore, it’s on the way to KL along the Federal Highway so it’s a perfect spot for a cuppa wake-me-up (we decided on shopping in KL for the day. Typical us HA!). Why I favor this place so much? Well, for a place that is called ‘kopitiam’, it is surprisingly upscale with nice and plush deco embracing it’s every corner. And if you are there, do try to sit upstairs as there’s a small pool there to accompany your cup of java. But the most important thing is, the price of a cup of ‘kopi kao’ or any other drinks there is the same as any other ‘Old Town’ I’ve been to. And it’s not as noisy as the other ‘Old Town’ outlets, so it’s a nice and quiet spot to unwind and read the morning papers or whatever your fancy over a cup of coffee. Affordable yet elegant, now that’s my ideal coffee spot ;)

Fresh from my daily dose of coffee, we headed over to the ‘Pavilion’ for shopping. It wasn’t the sales season I know, but I just have to get some jeans as my last pair was torn to shreds (don’t ask how. If you do, I’ll just reply sharks did it. Beh). Went around and around and shop after shop, and still couldn’t get what I wanted. So mission failed. Sigh.

All these walking were making me hungry so we switched from hunting clothing to hunting food instead. Now most people will head to those fancy restaurants that’s littered around the 'Pavillion', but sometimes do try their food court. It’s kinda pricey I know but that place is actually loaded with a variety of culinary gems. My latest finding is the stall selling ‘Hong Kong Roast Duck’. You just have to taste it to believe it, it was very surprisingly good. Just the skin itself was already mouth-watering, it’s roasted with just enough of crispiness and it’s bursting with aroma. In fact, I can dare say it is almost as good as any plate of duck rice along those gastronomy streets of actual Hong Kong!

Did more shopping, did more chitchatting and more eating (had a bite of ‘JCo’ before going back home too) but I guess those foodie stuff was the real highlight of the day. Food or clubbing? Food or a bars? Food or a bottle of Chivas? Definitely, absolutely, positively, fooooood. And coffee. Yeah. And certainly that too. Until next time peeps!!

From Britain to America: Susan Boyle

WoOooOowww...How things change for the better for some people. Remember my post on the beautifully-voiced Susan Boyle under my post 'Something Unexpected'? She amazed and surprised everyone on the show 'Britain's Got Talent', and now she is bringing her charm to America. Here's an article from 'Yahoo':

LOS ANGELES (AFP) - - A Scottish charity worker who became an Internet star after her performance on a British talent contest has been invited to appear on Oprah Winfrey's chat show, officials said Friday.

A spokesman for "Oprah" confirmed to AFP that Susan Boyle, 47, had caught the attention of the Chicago-based television mogul Winfrey and was being lined up as a guest. The spokesman could not confirm when Boyle might appear.

By Thursday, a video clip of Boyle's singing debut on the "Britain's Got Talent" television show last weekend has received more than 19 million views on YouTube, with the number rising fast.
US actress Demi Moore was apparently moved to tears by the clip, while the story was been picked up around the world, with US, Australian and other broadcasters reportedly queuing up for interviews.

In the clip, the down-to-earth Boyle walked on stage, saying she dreamed of emulating West End star Elaine Page.

When she began to sing, the panel of three judges led by music guru Simon Cowell appeared visibly taken aback, and the audience in Glasgow rose to its feet as her voiced soared through "I Dreamed A Dream" from "Les Miserables."

Good on ya, ma'am!!!

Shrimped Out @ Bubba Gump, Sunway

KL Weekend Break: 3rd ~ 6th April, 2009

Day 2: 4th April, '09.

It has been so long since I’ve met up with the old friends from my ex-company. I honestly forgot when was our last meeting…was it at KLCC? I only remember meeting SC at the Curve with SL last year. It has been way too long, and since I’m coming back for a long weekend, I guess it’s time to meet up again.

We were very close last time and got along very well with B, K, SC, and a few others. Now with our new jobs and new commitments, we somewhat drifted apart a little. But we always try to stay as close as possible, no matter what. We used to work together at some company selling electronic stuff, like projectors, LCDs, Plasma, etc. At the time I was there, the company was quite established, having a showroom in Mid-Valley and a grand showroom in KLCC. But, maybe due to mis-management, it was downhill from there. Anyway, after work we would go out for dinners in Mid-Valley (we are based in MV) and watch movies almost every Wednesday (only RM6!!), went together for trips and just basically played around in the office (we just graduated then, so working was not taken so seriously, just waiting for that BIG company to join later!! But that’s just me anyway…). For that one year in that period of my life, it had many of the most memorable moments I’ve ever experienced.

As many were in the Sunway area, we met up at Pyramid and went to ‘Bubba Gump’ for dinner (we were supposed to go to Yaki-Yaki Japanese Buffet!!! Aaaarrghhh!!!) But I’ve never tried ‘Bubba’ so it’s worth a shot. ‘Bubba Gump’ sounds very familiar right, that’s because it’s a spin-off from that old Tom Hanks movie ‘Forrest Gump’. ‘Bubba Gump’ is actually the shrimp company that Forrest Gump set up after the movie, and because of its tries with the movie, memorabilia are extensively displayed around the restaurant, i.e. a dress worn by Jenny, Forrest’s girlfriend in the movie, army hardhats, signed posters, etc (but are they original? The waiters claim it is…hhhmmm…). Good for taking photos with tho!!!

But all in all, the ambiance is fun, the service is great and the most importantly, the food is…well…somewhat limited in variety, but it is still good nonetheless. Hence its name ‘Bubba Gump Shrimp & Co’, its main offering is…well…shrimp (i.e. prawns, to the uninitiated). Fried shrimp, fresh shrimp, shrimp this and shrimp that, you name it and most probably they got it…probably. But besides that, they got other food like steaks, pasta etc. But when the place’s name is shouting out Shrimp, you just have to try its shrimp right? All in all, a fun place for innocent fun birthdays, gatherings and all that. Ambiance is nice, kinda pricey (equivalent to TGI and Chili’s) and the service is top-notch. Why? Just view the pictures to find out ;)

Before going for dinner, we went house-visiting at B's new home!!! Thanks for inviting us in and thanks for the 'grape champagne' was...sweet haha.

FoOooOoD!!! It's the 'Shrimper's Heaven' @ Bubba Gump Shrimp Co., combo of 4 shrimps variety in their menu...

Here's a close-up...tempting isn't it?

The 'Bourbon Street Baramundi'...quite tasty, but got small beware!!

The ' Choco Chip Cookie' dessert...Abit toooo sweet...but still yummy nonetheless!!!

Shopping at their little stall? No, just tumpang their glamour for a photo hahah..

Ah K cannot tahan all these photo-taking until have to call police bad...

And finally...chocolates, so me? AwwWwwWwwwW....

Something Unexpected

This is to teach everyone to NOT judge anyone by its cover. Watch on:

Do you Jimmy?

Do you follow Jimmy Kimmel? Although I always prefered Jay Leno (miss that guy's jokes man) but sometimes Jimmy's freakin' hilarious. The things you can see in his shows and the jokes he makes are at times super darn funny. There were so many times I broke out laughing in the middle of the night watching him and just literally woke up the neighbours (honest!!). Here's one of the best moments from the show, it is when Sarah Silverman was being interviewed by Jimmy. They broke up earlier. And this is her present to him:

**(F-Words are blipped, so don't worry ;p & the background music can be turned off at the bottom of this blog)**

And Jimmy would not just let it go away, here's Jimmy's revenge!! What a comeback mannnn..(just watch the entire clip!!)

And you wonder why Matt Damon did the clip fro Sarah Silverman? Here's why...

There's never enough time for Matt Damon!! So do we, so goooooood night everyone!!!

KL Weekend Break ~ 3rd to 6th April 2009.

Day 1, 3rd April 2009.

I took the morning flight from Labuan to LCCT and arrived around 1PM. The crappy thing about AirAsia’s Labuan-KL route now is that all flights are in the mornings. Pathetic!!! Why?? I could have taken the evening flight the day before and I’ll already be sleeping in my KL home’s comfy bed, instead of rushing for a morning flight. Sigh. Furthermore I can’t really sleep in an AirAsia flight. The noise, the attendants selling stuff, those cramp and stiff seats, they all are very... challenging to me haha. But, what to do, in order to save money right?

Went back home, took a shower and I was already driving off to 1U to meet Z (I got the entire weekend planned up lol). Z is a kinda old friend of mine, met him in MSN (and before that, from some social website haha) and somehow, we just clicked. There was much to update, so we headed off to one of my favorite hideouts in 1U, Pick n’ Brew!!

This place is really a nice place. You know how 1U is, noisy and full of shoppers. But Pick & Brew is just the direct opposite of that. It’s quiet and very relaxing. Tucked in a cozy little corner of 1U, it’s a bubble of tranquility that anyone can escape to. There are times that it is full with people, yes. But they are usually the people that know when to shut-up when they have to, and make a noise when they need to. That's my experience with the place anyway.

Me and Z took the ‘tea time promo’ and for RM13 bucks (tax and service charge included), a pot of gourmet coffee was served in their signature Moka Pot (it’s an unique pot that encourages coffee beans to produce flavors to its fullest, an original Italian method to brew coffee) and also one choice of dessert. I had the blueberry Danish and Z had the bread & butter pudding. But the interesting part was choosing the type of coffee!! See, the place has a choice of 3 ‘House Selections’ which are Inspirational, Vibrant and Passionate. Within each, there’s another whole list of coffees to choose from!! This time around we playfully asked the waiter to choose a flavor for us, based simply on our looks. She chose ‘Pleasures’ for me and Z got ‘Indulgence’. HHmmmm…Sounds abit too kinky for 2 guys having coffee together but, we trust the waiter’s recommendation. The coffee came and of course, it’s just bursting with aroma. They can call it ‘Pleasures’, call it ‘Sensual’, called it ‘Maximum Climax’, whatever they call it, it’s coffee and it’s coffee bliss supreme. There, Pick n’ Brew, you owe me publicity money. Pay up pay up.

After that, we went for the ‘Shinjuku Incident’. I was kinda disappointed with this one. I know it’s not the typical Jackie Chan action adventure, but still…even it’s a drama, I wasn’t impressed. Sorry. For my full thoughts, read the below post. Anyway, after the dinner, there was still so much to talk about with Z haha. I dunno why, between me and him, we got LOADS to share. Or maybe it’s because I’m stuck in an island like Labuan for far too long? Hmmmmm. We headed off to ‘Fish & Co’ as I love fish and chips. He talked about his latest flings, what he did, what he did not do, etc etc etc. Of course I shared some info on my side too. We talked until 1U was closing, and yet we still wasn’t that satisfied lol. Thus, we headed off to McDonald’s around the Curve area and talked somemore hahaha. I think it was the longest conversation with anyone that day. Around 2AM, we took a drive around in his “mini Ferrari” *cough, cough, vomit, spit blood* and Z showed off his Michael Schumacher skills. I wasn’t sure which part of Schumacher he was referring to, but I was bloody glad it ended with me still in one piece and not in pieces. Amen to that.

The Fast & Furious Incident

Just arrived Labuan yesterday and the hustle and bustle of work re-starts once again. Sigh. How upsetting. But luckily the weekend in KL was a pretty good trip. Relaxing and enjoying. Tell you about it later. Saw 2 movies over the weekend in KL, the ‘Shinjuku Incident’ and ‘Fast & Furious’. How was it? Weeeeeeeell…here’s a quickie on the movies:

‘The Shinjuku Incident’

Bottom-line: Just so-so. Nothing outstanding. If you didn’t know it already, this is not a typical Jackie Chan action flick. It’s a drama. So no flying kicks and dragon pushes. Just plain acting from Jackie. And the acting from him is…bad. Sorry Jackie fans but this latest effort from him just didn’t cut it for me. Monotonous acting right from the start, I still think Jackie should stick back to what he does best: kicking ass. Ok, so he is not young anymore. But so what? Clint Eastwood is as old as the Himalayas but he still looks cool and wiping badness off its feet in ‘Gran Torino’. I would love to see Jackie direct a Hong Kong movie, go back to his roots and rejuvenate Hong Kong cinema once more. It’s time to pass on that cinema magic to someone else, Jackie!! But back to Shinjuku, it’s nothing we have not seen before. The way they operate as gangs and their modus operandi etc etc etc are all ‘been there, done that’ kinda feel. Story, normal. Acting, normal. Action, normal. All this make me feel short-changed. I’ll just download this if I were you.

Verdict: 5/10

‘Fast & Furious’

It started off really good. The opening sequence was very Vin Diesel (and very typical of ‘The Fast and the Furious’ cool). But it lamed off in the end. Ran out of gas (and ideas) in the end perhaps. This was supposed to be the grand re-introduction of Vin Diesel back to the action genre (he will be re-appearing in action flicks that made him the badass he is today, next up will be the sequel to ‘The Chronicles of Riddick’). But he too lamed off as the movie progressed as there was not enough one-liners to keep him in the cool and not enough slick moves. I actually expected abit more from Vin Diesel. Overall, the action is indeed fast and furious, plenty of car chases and most importantly, it has well directed car chases. In truth, crashed cars never looked so good. The director, Justin Lin (a Taiwanese director, born in Orange County California and popular for his film ‘Better Luck Tomorrow’) did a better job this time around compared to his ‘F&F: Tokyo Drift’ debut. I know some may disagree that Tokyo Drift might be better, but I think this time around the action is more intense, more well-edited and more complete as an action movie. And yeah, Vin Diesel and Paul Walker is reunited once more, but…I don’t think there’s any chemistry between them whatsoever, and Paul is as ‘kayu’ as ever. This movie is worth a watch but shame about the ending, it could have been much better.

Verdict: 7/10

Escape to KL (6th ~ 9th April '09)

I'll be back to good ol' KL from the 6th to 9th April. Looking forward to some jap food, a nice cuppa freshly brewed coffee, a decent cinema and of course some relaxation in some familiar surroudings to escape the hussle and bussle of work in Labuan. See you in KL!!!

Earth Hour in Labuan

So how was your Earth Hour? Probably better than mine I suppose. I did my small part in switching off the lights in my lil’ humble Labuan room of course. So much so that my housemate saw what I was doing and participated too. But he went abit overboard. He switched off the main switch of the house instead O.o Yup, talk about turning over to the dark side. Feeling abit lost and quite honestly kinda warm, we decided to take our car out for a spin to see what the others are doing during this earthly time (sidenote: does this beat the point of switching off the lights as we pollute the air with our car fumes instead?) Anyway, we headed to the main town area and I was honestly quite surprised to see the level of participation of Earth Hour in Labuan. Many housing areas were darker than usual, and many of the hotels here turned off the lights too. I took a few pics of course:

Right outside my house. Complete darkness except for the street lights (and someone's TV if you look real closely). But still. it's a job well done!!

The biggest hotel in Labuan, Grand Dorsett doing its bit for Earth Hour. The lobby was dark, and it's staff was seen working with torchlights!!!

Labuan's one and only shopping mall/office towers were darker than usual during Earth Hour. I think the parking were free 'cause the entry and exit were all open for cars to pass!!!

Labuan Square was in complete darkness, and the amazing thing was there were a concert being held there, in darkness!!!
Even streetlights are off. But was this intentional? Hmmmmm....

And at the stroke of 9:30pm, all lights came back on. Nicely done!!

Grand Dorsett's lights came back on, relinquishing back its glory and glamour.

As for my room after Earth Hour (and that spin around town in the car), well, it is better that it remained completely dark. Sorry.. ;p

From the Corner - A Musical Companion

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