Durian Runtuh @ Awanmulan

Some time in December, my friend Edward from Singapore was visiting KL for the first time ever, and i told him that i’d try to take him to Awanmulan so he could get a taste of Malaysian nature. I’m adamant that if visitors come to KL, they can’t just explore the city… you gotta get out and see how beautiful it is a mere hour away too!

I was having a crazy busy time at work… and it wasn’t the best time to go away, but i felt like i needed to shut off for just a day. (The thing about running your own show is there IS no break. And as long as i’m within a whatsapp message or email away… i can’t seem to run away.) But hey, Edward around was a great reason to: 1) be a great host. 2) get away myself.

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I’ve stayed in every single room in Awanmulan, save for Durian Runtuh and Rahsia – their latest addition to the nature retreat. It’s built on a slope facing West so you can watch the sun set over the distant hills.

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There are two floors – on top is Durian Runtuh, and below is Rahsiah. If you book only Durian Runtuh (2 bedrooms that sleep 4 pax) it will be RM1330; Rahsiah below sleeps 5 for RM1140. If you take BOTH rooms, you sleep 9 pax for RM2100.

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The words on their door sign are formed from nails being hammered into it!

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Kitchen with full amenities and living area

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Love the pink and mint wooden window panes that complement the colours of the sunset rays so the whole room will glow in those tones in the evening!

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BECAUSE I HAVE NO SHAME that i love Frozen.

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SWS

You know of SOS. But have you heard of SWS?

I’m just about getting over SWS (Ship Withdrawal Symptoms). I don’t even think the team is over it yet. This morning they were all still talking about stuff that happened on the ship and after 30 minutes, i piped up, “OK ENOUGH! I’m gonna separate you all if you don’t stop talking, i can’t do my work!”

After that, silence.
And i felt like the mean schoolteacher.  -_-

OK fine, the ship was really awesome. Some ppl asked whether it was as awesome as the pix depicted.
And i was like, “Yezzzzz”

The vibe on the boat was so awesome cos everyone basically had to be a community for 5 days. Everything was within walking (or stumbling) distance – restaurants, pool, clubs, bars, rooms, sports amenities, casino. Because getting on the ship costs a certain amount of money, i felt that it got a crowd that was slightly better behaved. I only met two people that made me feel negative, out of hundreds of amazing beings i made friends and hung out with. Everyone was smiley, saying hi in the corridors, it was easy to go up to anyone and strike a conversation (cos we’re all in the same boat har har). When i got off the ship and continued smiling at strangers on land, i realised i was back to ‘reality’ when noone returned my smiles. #sad

Everyone on the ship was just in such a good mood cos it was a holiday!

Signs of SWS:

1. You eat a lot.

I’ve been eating like a horse during and after the ship. On the day we disembarked; i had breakfast at 6am, a huge lunch in Singapore at 1pm, char siew pau at 4pm, and two dinners in one sitting at 7pm. For the first time in my fanship at Fat Spoon, i ordered two main dishes and walloped both by myself after coming straight from the airport cos i couldn’t take it. I felt like passing out from hunger.

2. You surf #itstheship on IG constantly.

The first night i got back, i couldn’t help checking out IG to see all the pictures and get links of people i’d met on board. After a few hours, i decided i HAD TO STOP.

3. You’re messaging people you met on the ship, when you’re home.

I’ve been messaging and voice-noting all these people i met during those 5 days. It’s like we can’t get enough of each other. It even applies to old friends. Aaron asked to meet up tomorrow, and i was like, “Seriously?? We just saw each other for FIVE days on the ship! Not enough issit?” Deep asked me to come out to 42 today; i was at a pre-wedding dinner so noooo.

4. You have to get used to reality around you.

Like the smiling i mentioned earlier on in this post, i had to get used to the fact that not everyone smiles. It felt so weird to be back on land, not have food of all types at your disposal at any given hour, people around to play with, laughing and running around all day, talking to people and having fun, dancing, drinking. Aaron said he was in starbucks getting a coffee on the way to work and imagined the guy next to him was shirtless and holding a beer. Said guy was actually wearing a shirt and tie.

5. Bodily dysfunctions.

I lost my voice on the 3rd day at the ship. By the 5th day i was barely comprehensible if i didn’t try hard enough. I wasn’t the only one. EVERYONE in our group of 12 lost their voices, except Danny and Deep. Something about their genes. And then there are the bruises and urm allergies. My allergies came back with a vengeance cos i drank too much (aughhhh).

6. You’re still not unpacked.

Packing to check out of the ship constituted chucking all my belongings hilly billy into my white rimowa. I usually separate my accessories, chargers and bikinis by packing them in separate pouches; but that didn’t happen this time. Because it’s such a royal mess, i just about got over getting the tangle of stuff out of my bag, and haven’t finished placing all items back in its proper place yet.

 

A Curious Twist in Christmas Tradition @ YTL’s Cameron Highlands Resort

* Written by Weng Yee *

I am a big fan of crime shows, from Criminals Minds and Bones to Castle. So of course I jumped at the chance of attending a Murder Mystery Dinner! The invitation included a plus 1 so when I asked one of my friends, she was just as excited as I was at the chance of a weekend away in Cameron Highlands.

YTL Hotels had invited us to their 3D2N weekend getaway entitled “A Curious Twist in Christmas Tradition” at Cameron Highlands Resort where I would not only get to partake in a murder mystery dinner, but also witness the Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony and sample a preview of their Christmas Dinner.

YTL kindly arranged transport for us from The Majestic Hotel up to Cameron Highlands and one piece of advice I have for anyone making the trip there is – if you are prone to motion sickness, use the new road! It may take an hour longer but the old Tapah road is not for the faint hearted, it is one curvy road!

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The atmosphere is so different that it’s exactly what you need for a weekend away. The air is crisp and cool, the Christmas decorations are up, and they serve proper afternoon tea! It made me reminisce about my Christmas times in the UK. While KL does put in the effort of having decorations in the mall and Christmas songs on the radio, it just isn’t quite the same. Afternoon tea in the Jim Thompson Tea Room was scrumptious and will easily fill two up. Their home baked scones with freshly made strawberry jam is definitely one of the best I’ve had in Malaysia.

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Our room for two nights. Nice touch of providing a fruit bowl whereby the fruits are already cut for leisurely consumption. I once stayed in a hotel where they provided a whole pineapple in the fruit bowl and no proper knife for it -.-

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Holiday cheer all around! Their fireplace is lit every night which is perfect for chilly nights in Cameron Highlands. Over the weekend, I observed how people would naturally gravitate towards the fireplace while hanging out.

First item on the agenda for the Murder Mystery Evening was cocktails. It was a great way to loosen everyone up so that we could all get into character and talk to our ‘targets’ (everyone had been given a card beforehand with a list of tasks to complete such as who to talk to, blackmail or bribe).

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After that it was down to the Dining Room for dinner.

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The setup was gorgeous. The roses on the table were so perfect that I assumed that they were fake until someone mentioned they were real. I even reached out to touch them to make sure. Dinner was a preview of their New Year’s Eve Gala Dinner Menu.

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From L-R: Semi-dried Momotaro tomatoes with blue cheese, Provence black olives, Aglandau extra virgin olive oil, aged balsamic and fresh basil; Angus beef and ale stew with Yorkshire pudding, green peas and vegetables (the beef was so tender that it melted in my mouth); Chocolate mousse mille-feuille with caramelised banana, pistachio soil and toffee anglaise.

Just as the first course was cleared, a scream was heard from the drawing room “A MURDER HAS HAPPENED!!” And of course like the kepoh busybodies we were, the entire Dining Room cleared out to take a look at the poor unfortunate soul.

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Who was it but ‘Jim Thompson’ himself. After everyone got a good look, we were told to make our way to dinner but before anyone could sit down, a second scream was heard and off we rushed to the billiards room where we found the second victim…

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Warmest Halloween Ever

That was what the news was saying in London last night.
I landed on Friday morning, and pretty much have been working and battling jetlag since i got here!
Well, at least i’m working in a different city instead of KL (tho i wish i was in KL for the KBF stall we opened at Seek & Keep).
See what i mean about wanting to split myself in two!?
Or a teleport machine at least…

When i left KL the weather in London was said to be 11°C and rainy (no surprise there)
but when i arrived… it was 20°C and sunny all day! Weird!
And it’s sunny today too! I didn’t even bring a single pair out of my MANY sunglasses -_- cos i forgot and it wasn’t top of my priority list to remember…

Besides being cooped in working while it’s so wonderfully sunny out, i did accompany my Mama to Waitrose cos she wanted to cook us dinner and i wanted to spend some time learning the recipes from her. She’s 85 and walks with a 3-wheeler now, but she’s doing so much better than when i saw her last spring. I’m really happy to be here to see my family… this was the whole point i stopped by London seeing i’m ‘in the neighbourhood’ to go to Paris next week.

Workwise, I’ve been spending hours sorting out orders for party stock for The Ship, praying customs won’t give us problems, checking up on how sales are doing in Seek & Keep, sending emails for other jobs we’re securing for 2015… poor Sweet Ee and Weng Yee, i’ve been totally overworking them the past few days. Thank you for being so awesome, dinner on me when we’re all together again!!!

Ok i’ve been up since 8:30am working, and it’s time to go out and play with Yishyene! Yay!!!

New TV Show Fashion Bloggers Debuts!

I was flown to Sydney for a few days to attend the launch event of Fashion Bloggers, a new TV show by The Style Network in Australia. It debuted on October 15th and follows the lives of 5 of Australia’s top fashion bloggers!

In Malaysia, Fashion Bloggers airs at 10pm every Wednesday night on Channel E! (Ch712 on Astro).

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We stayed at Fraser Suites on Kent Street. It was a very comfortable room in which i spent most of my hours in working! The only time i went out in Sydney was to see my cousin for dinner, interview the bloggers, and attend the launch event at night.

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It was my first time meeting Adrian of SuperAdrianMe.com and he ended up being my partner in party time.
Read his post on Fashion Bloggers *here*

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My lunch, it was a mere few hours after our breakfast and i was the only one who unabashedly finished the whole meal… i was literally starving by then and will admit not that i am one of those annoyingly skinny people who eat a lot.

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My clutch is from KLUTCHED, it’s stocked in Shoes Shoes Shoes and M Store in KL, Galeries Lafayette in Paris, and Mandarin Gallery in Singapore.

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With Melanie from Lipstiq, Karman from StyleXStyle, and me!

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I’m wearing earrings and dress from Shoes Shoes Shoes.
The dress actually comes with separate zippered pieces for the top, and a flared bottom, but i decided against it for the look that night.

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Thank you ELLE Malaysia!

Thanks to Shah at ELLE for bringing a whole crew to my home one day to shoot me in my wardrobe. I guess you guys have to come over again when i move house XD

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This is in the October issue of ELLE. Yeah i know i’m a bit late with picking up the mag, i totally forgot i was in it till someone told me.

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I am now in Sydney for the launch of Fashion Bloggers, a new Australian TV docu-show featuring 5 of Australia’s most prominent fashion bloggers: Sara Donaldson of Harper & Harley; Kate Waterhouse of KateWaterhouse.com; Amanda Shadforth of Oracle Fox; Margaret Zhang of  Shine By Three; and Zanita Whittington of Zanita. The first episode debuts for Malaysian viewers on Astro this Wednesday at 10pm Malaysian time on Channel E! (Ch712).

Initially i thought of sending someone else to come in my place cos it seemed a *bit* mad that i’d attempt to coordinate the guest list for the Love Bonito launch this Thurs while here, and fly to Sydney the Monday-Wednesday before. I asked Sarah, but she wasn’t free after just coming back from Bali. And i asked Claudia, but it’s her first week as editor of Cleo so she’s out. Then i thought, “Maybe… the Universe is saying *i* should be the one going.”

So here i am.

A bit dead. I landed at 10:30am this morning after transiting in Singapore. Checked in Fraser Suites Sydney at noon and dived straight into work. Napped at 4pm (cos i only managed 4 hours sleep on the plane). Woke up, worked another hour, dinner with my cousin Smalls, then worked till now… it’s almost 1am.

I should get some rest!

But first a bit of storytelling. Somewhere in the middle of my flight, i restlessly thought to myself, “Man. I wish i was in business class so i could sleep properly. One day… i will only fly business class…” And within the next ten minutes, this air steward came by where i was sitting (we were jesting earlier) and passed just me a Kate Spade night bag from the business class section. How odd! And how very nice of him! Bless him! I couldn’t even find him when i stepped off the flight to say thank you.

I’m taking it as a sign that the Universe is saying, “Be patient.” XD

 

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