Sunday, June 29, 2014

~ Sentosa's Latest Night Attraction - Wings of Time ~

Media Invite: Gates of Siloso Beach were closed for about a month after we bid farewell to Songs of the Sea. The kids still miss the show and the tune continues to hum in their ears and hearts. As Oscar and his friends swam off to a new land, another adventure awaits.

Sentosa's latest iconic night attraction - Wings of Time touched down at Siloso Beach on 17 June 2014.  Shabaz (a bird-like creature) and his new friends were warmly welcomed by a near-full house crowd! We were equally thrilled to be able to say "Hi" and catch the new extravaganza.

Wings of Time Combining the state-of-the-art effects with contemporary story-telling and audience engagement is set to excite, move and bring audiences and their imaginations on a magical journey.

Stage Setup
The 10-metre backdrop is the key feature of Wings of Time, consisting of 9 triangles what would create panoramic vistas during the performances with the multimedia effects of over 180 equipment, including six 3D projectors, coloured lasers, and water fountains.

A tale of friendship and courage sets two teenagers, Rachel and Felix on an adventure. Together, they helped a bird-like creature, Shahbaz, find its way home. 

As the trio leave modern Singapore, we join them on a breathtaking adventure through several panoramic vistas - from Industrial Revolution, Silk Road era, to the African Savanna and underwater depths. 

Short video snippet of Wings of Time

What's the difference between Songs of the Sea and Wings of Time?

The children preferred the story-line choreographed by Songs of the Sea as there is a stronger local presence and feel. Particularly the songs sang in all languages that we felt so close to.

Wings of Time took us on a journey around the world as we were marveled by the latest and unique multimedia effects and fireworks that was breath-taking and awesome.

We were totally immersed by the fusion of multi-sensory experience of pyrotechnics, music, laser, fireworks that set against the picturesque Siloso Beach. It is refreshing to see the change as Wings of Time brings its guests to a world where Imagination Takes Flight.

* Show time * 
Daily (Monday - Sunday), 7:40pm and 8:40pm

(Be seated 10 minutes before the show to catch the pre-show segment) 

* Venue * 
Siloso Beach

* Show tickets *
Premium seats: SGD 23, Standard seats : SGD 18 (Local rates : SGD 15)
(Ticket prices are inclusive of taxes)


Tuesday, June 24, 2014

~ Sponsored Review - 8 Days Boutique Hotel (Permas Jaya) ~

June 2014 - We embarked on another food trail in Johor Bahru during the June holiday vacation. This time, we decided to explore the areas outside of KSL and venture into Permas Jaya.

Our family spent 2 nights at 8 Days Boutique Hotel (Permas Jaya) which is about 15 minutes drive after crossing the checkpoint. 

8 Days Boutique Hotel offers affordable and comfortable stay for guests. Currently, they have 3 branches conveniently located within Johor Bahru, namely - Permas Jaya, Mount Austin and Impian Emas. It's not too hard to spot the hotel especially in the night. Just keep a look out for the iconic number 8 brightly lighted on the building's exterior. 

What's around 8 Days?
AEON Permas Jaya is just beside 8 Days Boutique Hotel to satisfy our shopping and marketing needs, especially in the nights when we do not want to drive out. Senibong Village (Malay Seafood Village) is 5 minutes drive away from the hotel and there are more dining options along the rows of shop lots that we can walk to. (More details will be covered in our Food Trail)

What's within 8 Days?
Reception area and conference room which can host up to 70 guests. Bistro Cafe, where meals, snacks and drinks are served daily. There are seating available indoor and outdoor.

There are ample parking lots right in front of the hotel. During the night, there will be a security guard to keep a watch of the cars. Permas Jaya police station is also located along the same shop row as 8 Days Hotel. That gave us an extra sense of security to leave our car at the parking lot overnight.

8 Days in a decent boutique hotel which provides complimentary Wifi. Electronic key security card system is adopted to access the lift and rooms. Check out their room rates online. Alternatively, it is also available at the reception counter. 

I spoke to the friendly staff at the reception and understand that the branch at Permas Jaya has opened for 3 years. The difference between Deluxe and Superior room is the availability of fridge and window view for the prior option. Do check with the hotel prior to your booking. 

*Photos of each room type were taken from my mobile phone without any photo editing. 

I was pretty impressed with the various room types available within 8 Days. Particularly the ones with steam bath or jacuzzi attached in the bathroom. There is a total of 48 rooms of different sizes over the 3 storey hotel. 

Some rooms are smaller with limited walking space but each room is neat and clean. Towels, toothbrush and toothpaste are provided in the bathrooms. 

Premier 4 in 1 comes with 2 Queen beds and it is the perfect room for our family particularly since we have 2 older children. Denver & Gladys love the beds because it is on the platform (very Japanese style). For the first time, I do not have to worry about them jumping on the beds. ^_^

Although the walking space is limited, it was nicely compensated with the spacious platform area. We played, snacked and rest on the platform. Even sleeping on the raised floor was so comfortable, thanks to the coolness from the air-condition room.

Toilet is spacious and clean. Safe and slippers were provided. 

Current promotional rate for Premier Tatami room is priced at RM155 (approximtely SGD 62) which is pretty affordable. If guests wish to travel down to Legoland or Puteri Habour Family Theme Park, they can check with the front desk to check on the transportation services available. I also learned that there is night market (Pasar malam) just outside the hotel on Sundays evening. We would love to be back to explore in the future!

8 Days Boutique Hotel (Permas Jaya Branch)

Address: 24, 26, 27 & 28 Block A, Permas Mall, Jalan Permas Utara,
Bandar Baru Permas Jaya, Johor Bahru, Johor, Malaysia
Tel: +6073889889, +6016 7133339

* Disclosure:Our family's stay at 8 Days Boutique Hotel (Permas Jaya) is sponsored by 8 Days Boutique Hotel. All comments and opinions are personal and no monetary compensation was received.

Sunday, June 15, 2014

~ Our 3D2N virgin voyage on Star Cruise Virgo - Day 2 (Part 2) ~

When you are on a cruise, one of the activity that you will not miss and continually indulge in all day and night is dining. There are a couple of cafes, restaurants to select from and we were spoilt for choices.

Since we had $300 dining credits, we decided to utilize it on our lunch. Blue Lagoon (located at Deck 7) offers local Asian as well as Western cuisines. If you have a craving for Chicken rice, Kway Teow, Nasi Lemak or Satay, here's the place to be.

After indulging in a full day buffet spread on our first day on board, our tummies were pretty bloated. It was refreshing to enjoy a simple lunch for a change. A plate of fried noodle and fried rice combi were just as heavenly. 

Mixed meat platter

Denver and Gladys' lunch - fried chicken with fries.

We headed straight to Mediterranean Buffet for more drinks and dessert after lunch. There were assorted bread and cakes to select and we had the perfect spot to enjoy the sea view as we sat in for our afternoon tea :)

Parents do not need to fret that their little ones will be bored as there are lots of activities planned throughout the day to keep the children entertain on Star Cruise Virgo. *Different rates applies for various activities.

We enrolled Denver and Gladys to participate in a free pirate craft session. Hubby and I finally had our own personal time roaming around the ship and visiting the casinos. 

Times passes pretty fast and soon it was dinner time! YES! It's time to EAT again. Dinner was at Bella Vista which has both Chinese and Western set menu of your choice. There is a lot of seating in the restaurant but it is best to arrive early to avoid waiting.

We decided to go for the Western menu which comes with an appetizer, main course and dessert. You can choose your preferred items from the menu.

Appetizer : Caesar Salad, Chilled Pacific Seafood and Pear and Papaya Salad. 

Main course for Hubby: Slow roasted slice of Beef Rib Eye with grilled potato, corn salsa and black pepper sauce.

Main course for myself and kids : Slow cooked Norwegian Salmon with wasabi mashed potato, barbeque flavoured mushrooms in chive butter sauce.

Using our dining credits, we ordered a plate of lobster as a special treat for all to share. :)

Dessert : Duo of Chocolate Mousse

Choices of ice-cream for Gladys.

Dinner was splendid. We enjoyed the fine dining and stayed longer for coffee.

Before we end our day filled with galore of food, we decided to go for a final round up of supper at the Samurai Restaurant (Located at Deck 8).

Reserving our last bits of dining credit for Salmon sashimi and Sushi to satisfy our craving and taste buds!

The 'caterpillar' sushi roll was awesome! Loving the richness of avocado and crunchy roe laid on top of the sushi making the dish so palatable. 

We end our night on board watching the final performance at The Lido - Stone of Atlantis. A tale set in the lost ancient city of Atlantis. A fusion of kung fu, acrobatics, music and dance performed by world-class performers left us astounded by their breathtaking stunts and acts. This is a show not to be missed.

Thursday, June 12, 2014

~ DIY Father's Day Card ~

This Sunday is Father's Day. How will you show your appreciation to salute the man in the house?

Here are some DIY cards that Mommies can do with your kids and add in your personal touch.

I think Daddies are very much like Superheros. Working very hard behind the scene supporting the family and do not ask for credits. They get satisfaction by knowing that their loved ones are safe and happy. Here are two Superhero cards that I drew and children can colour.

Alternatively, pick up a piece of origami paper and fold a tie for your Dad. You can choose his favourite colour and design the tie. Stick in on another piece of paper and design the shirt. This is a cool activity for the kids.

For those who are more adventurous, try paper quilling! I quilled a moustache and a tie to give the card a classier look. 

Finally, give your card a personalized note and a big hug for the Big Man in the family.

Wishing all Daddies a HAPPY FATHER'S DAY!

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Meet & Greet - We Are Monster High

Following our Monster High Activity Pass giveaway, I brought Gladys to Vivocity for her to experience a 'fang-tastic' time and chance to meet the teens from Monster High.

There was a bigger turnout over the weekend and the 'stage area' for the meet & greet session was too small to contain the crowd. Nevertheless, Gladys managed to catch a glimpse of the short dance performance by Monster High followed by photo-taking with the characters.

For those who did not managed to grab a meet & greet photo pass, there are nice Monster High backdrop around the event area where you can take pictures with your favourite characters too.

MH activities are located at the corners of the event area. Gladys' favourite goes to the DIY accessories where she was so intrigued by the colourful beads, jewels and sequins that can be used to make pretty bracelets and handphone straps. 

Next, we hopped over to create Gladys' very own Monster High ID. It was interactive and fun. There are different skin colour, hair style, accessories to select and Gladys' personalized ID is READY!

Noticed Gladys got a Special Name on her card? Her monster name is "Goblia Hydro"! How does that sounds? 

We did not manage to go for the makeover session as it was already FULL HOUSE! For those who are interested, do register early to avoid disappointment. 

Monster High will be at Vivocity from now till 15th June 2014. If you are a fan of MH, do not miss the opportunity to meet them before they return back to school. :)

Disclosure: Sponsored Review - All comments and opinions are personal and no monetary compensation was received. Thank you for the invitation to experience the We Are Monster High Show.

Thursday, June 5, 2014

~ Taste of Philippine's Lechon in Singapore! ~

It has been more than a year since our last visit to the Philippines and we missed the local food a lot. Although there are stalls and restaurants selling Filipino's delicacies, it thrills us even more to learn that we can now enjoy Philippines' national dish - Lechon within a coffeeshop! Thanks to JohorKaki's recommendation, we made our way down to Geylang East Central to catch the actual roasting in action.

Iskina Cebu, operated by Filipinos, offers set meal and a la carte options for diners. Most of the patrons are pinoys and there was a crowd despite it's location within the industrial estate. Our first visit to the stall was during dinner time on a weekend, and we regretted not arriving earlier. According to Chef Chris, all the 30 roasted chickens were sold out and this was what's left for the roasted pig. :(

A week later, we revisited Iskina Cebu, only this time during lunch hours. It was a wiser move as a new pig has just been roasted and we were able to sample it while it was still hot and crispy. 

Everyday, there is a lot of roasting above the charcoal pit. It is definitely not an easy task working near the fire continuously for hours, and ensuring the meat are roasted evenly. This brings back memories where we first witness the roasting in the Lechon Capitol in Manila. Although the scale is bigger then, this is definitely a rare sight happening in our local kopitiam. 

The Lechon set (SGD $10), roasted pig served with white rice seems to be the favourite among all the other set meals. We waited at least 15 minutes before it was ready to be served on both occasions. The crispiness of the thin layer of skin was heavenly, not forgetting the tender and juicy meat. Gladys surprised us by nearly finishing the entire serving!

The roasted pork belly (SGD $6) served at Iskina Cebu has it's unique flavour, aura and taste. The only downside we feel for this dish is the skin was too thick and hard for the children to chew and crunch. After awhile, Denver got tired with the munching and did not finish his meal.

The Roasted Chicken set (SGD $6) was meaty but I find the taste not as appealing compared to the other set meals. 

Our personal favourite goes to the Lechon Set! Marinated and stuffed with spices, each pig is roasted over the charcoal for hours. No wonder it won the hearts of many Filipinos and Singaporeans. 

Name : Iskina Cebu
Address: Blk 1016, Geylang East Ave 3, S389731 (Opposite Paya Lebar MRT)