Sofitel Open Second Spa Outlet at Sentosa in 2015

The Sentosa, A Beaufort Hotel, at 2 Bukit Manis Road is set for a major overhaul that will see its name changed. Sofitel Singapore Sentosa Resort & Spa will be their new name, marking the second spa by the French hotel brand. Their first spa opening, Sofitel So Singapore is schedule to open on 31 May 2014.

Undergoing a 12-18 months multi-million dollar renovation, it will be release in second half of 2015. The hotel will still be name The Singapore Resort & Spa Sentosa until transformation is complete.

DP Architects and MaxStudio will lead the renovation works. Beside the room, public areas will also get a complete new look, as well as the current Botanica Spa. The new So Spa includes 14 luxurious treatment rooms, 6 outdoor spa pavilions and a spa garden. Additionally, there will be refurbishment of existing two ballrooms while adding a pre-function room.

Situated behind Tanjong beach, the fabulous location provides fascinating tropical woodlands and sea views. A new place for rejuvenating body and soul in tranquil environment.

Special Shirodhara Head Treatment at Bail’s Dewi Fortuna Spa (Day 1)

Today was the first day of our trip in Bali, my girl friend and I have planned to have at least one massage everyday for our next three days stay in Bali. That should be one of the main purpose of coming to Bali, isn;t it ? After we finished our exquisite balinese lunch at Warung d’Sawah and “checking-in” at my friend’s villa for a short rest, we excitedly asked the driver to bring us to a nearby spa for a good body massage. While the driver drove us around to look for a place to massage, most of the spa salons are fully booked until we reach this spa – Dewi Fortuna Spa. No doubt the first impression of the spa does not throw a “WOW” factor to us, what impressed us further was the wide variety of the spa packages in which they offer.

As we entered the reception area, we were greet politely by the masseurs while they ushered us to waiting area, serving us a cup of spicy ginger tea. One of the masseurs handed over the menu to show their incredible wide selection of spa packages available, we was really spoilt for different choices. Both my girl friend and I opted for a same package cost about U$ 65 per person (excluding tax). The spa package consists of an hour of traditional balinese body massage and Shirodhara head treatment.

After choosing the spa package, we are being showed to a scarcely decorated couple room that has a simple bathtub with amenities. After we wash up and changed to disposable under garments and robe, we lay down onto the bed while waiting the masseurs prepares for our traditional balinese body massage.

The masseurs worked on our bodies with their experienced hands, rubbing our back with adequate force. One of the most amazing was the masseurs’ synchronised massage pace. Though we were both facing down, you could actually hears both of them clapping (part of balinese massage style) almost at the same time throughout the entire session ! What a sensory experience to both the body and senses.

After an hours of holistic body massage, the masseurs walked out of the room and brought in the apparatus for our Shirodhara head treatment. Shirodhara is a Ayurvedic head massage technique that drips a slow stream of warm oil onto the forehead. As it is our experience with Shirodhara, we felt a peculiar feeling while the oil slowly flow into the scalp. The masseurs then slowly massage our scalp periodically to allow the stream of oil flow evenly through our heads. As the process continues, the combination sound of oil dripping onto the forehead and the basin that is placed on the floor beneath our head, it creates a tranquil melody that ultimately calmed my mind before I fell asleep completely.

The masseur woke me up with a gentle tap on my shoulder, to indicate that we have to go to a room at second storey to wash off the oil from our hair. They have tended to us with ultimate care while grooming our hair. We might have ended the spa slightly over two hours but the masseurs still tried their best to attend to us. Unknowingly, it is already almost seven thirty, time for a nice dinner at Bawang Merah beach front restaurant.

pampered by their holistic Balinese massage and rejuvenated with their Shirodhara head treatment at reasonable price. Dewi Fortuna Spa indeed has taken good care for our well-being during this two hours of sensory experience.

Dewi Fortuna Spa
Jl. Bypass Ngurah Rai No. 38
Nusa Dua, Denpasar, Bali
Tel: +62-361-771322
Opening Hours: 9am to 10pm daily

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North Indian Cuisine Supper at RK Eating House

We have no intention of eating anything but as you know guys, we will feel hungry whenever we see food. Although RK Eating House is famous for their prata, but we are trying something different today – North Indian cuisine.

One of the “mistake” we made was ordering of the Large Teh Limau Ice (Ice Lime/Lemon Tea). When the waiter prompted us the size of the tea, we asked for large. The size of is about two cans of Oolong Tea, about 660ml. Gigantic ! I think by the time we finished our drinks, we are done for supper.

First to be served was the Kambing Soup. Unlike those I have tasted in other prata shop, they have put an egg into the soup which was neverthless something new to me. The soup base is much thicker while the mutton is diced and thrown into the soup. Though the mutton is tender, but it tasted slightly bland in taste.

Next on the table is Palak Paneer. It is a northern indian cuisine that consist of pureed spinach and paneer. Paneer is a kind of non-melting farmer cheese while it is not salty, and has similar taste close to beancurd (Dao Gua). While it assembly the looks of green curry, it is not spicy but little sweet. It might not be a favourite dish to meat lovers because it is a all vegetarian dish.

I think have taken the shoot in a slight darken environment but the Mutton Masala has a more chilli red appearance than it is shown in the picture above. Don’t be deceived by its colour, the Mutton Masala is not as spicy as it seem.

Finally the last dish is here, the Butter Naan. The Naan is thin and baked to golden crisp and the surfaced is spread with butter. Eating the Naan alone is luxurious, while companied with Palak Paneer and Mutton Masala, it tasted real good. The Naan tasted less oily compared to Prata and the other two dishes are not heavily flavoured. Really good for supper.

We spent a total of $30.30 for all the dishes above, average of $10 per person. Definitely I will be back for more of other North Indian cuisine, but I will try out some other places as well. However, do kindly take note that Naan is quite fulfilling, especially if you downed it with drinks. Though just eating only a piece of Naan, I could feel extremely bloated.

1A Kensington Park Road, Serangoon Gardens
Singapore 557253
Tel: +65 6289 5379
Opening hours: 24 hours daily 

Oyster Craze at Greenwood Fish Market & Bistro

The restaurant was tucked away in the dark alley of Greenwood Avenue which if one does not pass by accidentally, it will be almost impossible to reach out for this fabulous restaurants. They have two branch along the same stretch of shophouses and it was pretty filled up with guests during dinner time (about 7.30pm).

It was a dinner arranged by one of my girl friend’s best friend whom has a wonderful experience at this restaurant, in fact, it was one of the best restaurants when she was dating with her now-husband (how lovely!)

So what is the great deal with this place ? First of all, they are a seafood specialist selling and serving coldwater fish as well as seasonal seafood from Australia, New Zealand, USA and local. Besides dining-in, customers could also buy from their fresh selection and prepare their own meal at home. Of course, for me, it is easier to tuck in at the cozy bistro for a hearty meal.

While we was being ushered into the restaurant, it was pretty quiet since most of the customers are dining at the other outlet while we could enjoy the tranquility and nice ambience of the entire restaurant. One of the BIGGEST reasons which we are here today was for their special offer. By just ordering a main course per person (average about $25), we are able to eat unlimited fresh oysters at only $1.50 per piece on Tuesday, would that be entire craziness ? And so we each ordered a main course…

Top Left: Crabmeat Vongola Spagetti, Top Right: Prawn Aglio Olio, Bottom Left: Char Grilled Black Cod, Bottom Right: Pan Seared Snapper

In fact, the main course impressed me further when it is being served to us in generous serving and all of it tasted fabulously well. They have indeed make an effort to keep up with their quality food ad reputation. The main course are well-blended with a glass of house white wine.

Even after we had finished our hearty main course, we have left a space for the oysters ! Ordering oysters in dozens, we squeezed lemon juice generously over the oysters together with Tabasco sauce, it tasted heavenly good. We could not stopped and order rounds after rounds. End results ? Four of us finished 60 oysters and was still pondering if to order more..

We spent average $45-50 per person with a nice main course and full load of oysters. Definitely a must to be back. Power Oysters Tuesday!

Greenwood Fish Market & Bistro
34/38 Greenwood Avenue
Tel: +65 6884 6884
Opening Hours: Mon to Sat – 12pm to 10.30pm, Sun & PH – 11am to 10.30pm

10 Tips to Enjoy Your Solo Overseas Trip – Safely

I was surfing through the Facebook today and one of my friends who has been traveling in Europe has written a great post which I think should be shared with everyone ! I will keep the originality of the entire post, complete with explanation of the Singlish jargon.

When I told my friends/colleagues that I’m going solo for my Europe trip, I have reactions like: “Wah, sibei(very) brave to travel Europe alone. Dangerous. Confirm kanna(get) robbed/pickpocket” “You know hor(ya), that one time my so-and-so went to Europe with a BIG group and kanna(got) rob. So hor(ya)…” So now I’m back (thank god, safely), just thought to share some tips. Some of them might be useful to you; some seems ridiculous while others might just be crazy but these are what work for me.

#1: Traveling is meant to be fun and brainless. Which is fine. But do bring your common sense along. It will help you stay alive. (If there is a dark empty alley, DO NOT walk in. This is called common sense)

#2: If you are visiting some popular touristy areas known for pickpockets, walk with some random walking tour groups. Walking in big group reduce the chances of being targeted by the pickpockets. And you get free explanation and guide of the place!

#3: Dress like a homeless (Honestly, this is more of a personal preference. I usually don’t care how I look when I’m overseas. Seriously no one knows me and I’m not there to hook up with some random chicks. So screw the hair gels, shaver and matching clothes). But I did saw some tourists who dress like a superstars walking along Champs-Élysées… So if your dream is to dress like Carrie or Samantha in Sex and the City and walk down Fifth Ave or the streets of Champs-Élysées, sure please go ahead. #4: Don’t hang your DSLR on your neck. Cause it scream “I AM A TOURIST VISTING YOUR COUNTRY”. Anyway iPhone cameras are good enough. If you die die need to have high resolution/professional photos of the scenery, just Google. Confirm will find a dozen of them. No need to take them yourself.

#5: Have two wallets. Got this advice from a friend. One is where you put your small change while another is to put the big notes and your credit cards. Keep the one with credit card safe (in your inner pocket of your jacket). So even if you got robbed, you can just throw the one with small changes at the robbers and run. I think it will work… If it works, please let me know: p

#6: Another advice from friend – Act like you being for a long while. Like an expat or student working/studying there.

#7: Be aware of your surrounding. If someone walks too closely beside/behind you (especially if the street is pretty empty), then something is not right. Walk into a shop or slow down to let him/her walk past you or walk into a more crowded street.

#8: Advice from friend – stuff spare cash and important contact details in your shoes. In case you got rob (including your jacket where you keep your second wallet), you still have some cash to head back to hotel and call the embassy or police.

#9: If you need help, approach the locals. An ex-colleague of mine once said this – ”To travel alone is to trust that mankind is naturally kind. You are at their mercy for help”. Well said.

#10: It’s a holiday. You are supposed to be relaxing, reflective and have an enjoyable experience. Don’t let fear of pickpockets; robbers robbed you of your experience and fun of traveling alone. Use a bit of common sense, you should be fine. If you let fear ruin your holidays or worse, stopped you from going, then you have already lost to the criminals.

These are just some pointers I have while I travelled overseas, and if you have any more advices, can share below!

Desmond Yong is the post contributor for this traveling advise. Do like him at his Facebook if you see him around. 

Over Easy (ACA3) – Chilling Near The Seafront at Fullerton

Looking for places to chill in the night while overseeing Marina Bay Sands ? Below is a good place for recommendation.

Erdinger (1 Pint) – S$ 16.00
Kronenberg (1 Bottle) – S$15.00
Lemonade with Mint Leaves – S$ 9.00
Cranberry Juice – S$ 8.00
Nachos (Recommended) – S$ 16.00

Additional Charges
10% Service Charge
7% GST

1 Fullerton Road
#01-06 One Fullerton
Singapore 049213
Tel: +65 64230701
Fax: +65 64230769

Way to Bintulu – Visiting the 4th Largest Town in Sarawak

We flown our way from Brunei to Bintulu via MASwings and it was also the first time I have take a flight in a turboprop plane. We boarded the plane using a rear door (quite usually for passenger plane) and the plane has only two rows of seat of either side. Some travellers have mentioned that smaller aircraft are more prone to turbulence, but nah. That really depends on the weather and we landed in a smooth ride within an hour.

While being to Bintulu is my maiden trip, understanding from my client and superior that during the past, the airport is only a doorstep away from the town and it was in fact listed in the Guinness World Records as the town sited nearest to a airport. It is unimaginable that you can actual walked into the town after the customs ! However, over the decade, there was dramastic changes and a decent airport has actually been built.

Bintulu is a major industrial centre and will be turning into a capital of energy due to the intensive industries in Malaysia. We visited some of the industries at the sub-urban area and our client took us for a tour around the town before bringing us for lunch.

Lunch was an interesting affair. The client treated us with a fish called “Unforgettable” or “忘不了” in mandarin. The client brought the fish from home to the restaurant for the chef to perform his ultimate culinary skills to cook it to perfect taste. The patin of the fish was so silky and soft that you don’t even have to chew and it simply glide through the throat while the aromatic taste of the fish filled your entire mouth, a taste that words cannot simply described. The ultimate amazed “feature” will be the price of Unforgettable. My client bought a whole fish which weighs close to 7 kilograms (he mentioned that the texture differs for those under 3 kg) and though reluctant to reveal the price, it cost about RM700 or US$ 215 per 100 grams. I have just eaten 1 kilogram of this fish and it just became  most expensive fish I have eaten in my entire life and it really lives up to its name because you will definitely not forget the taste. Damned, just forget to take a photo of it !

Unforgettable actual name is Empurau, a riparian specie freshwater fish which can only be caught in a river in Sibu, Sawarak that jumps our of the water to feed on the oily fruits that are overhanging from Engkabang tree along the fast flowing streams in jungle habitat. The fish need to be at least 3 kilograms so that the flesh would have firm body.

After our exquisite lunch experience, we are heading to the airport again to fly to Kuching.