January 30, 2011

Malis Restaurant, Phnom Penh…never seen a place with an ambience like this in Cambodia

I like the ambience of  this place. In my opinion, surrounding-wise,  Malis is one of the leading Khmer restaurants in Phnom Penh. The surroundings are stylish and elegant, with outdoor sittings amongst Angkorian-inspired pools.

Food-wise, there are pluses and minuses. The prahok ktis (a dip made with ground pork, chillies, and fish sauce, served with steamed vegetables on the side) is great. The garlic eggplant is equally outstanding. The squid salad was not too great and the prawn cake’s skin was a bit too tough. Oh yes, one more thing, don’t bother with the desserts.

The staff, especially Kasmia Haschhoun (Guest relation) are super attentive and impeccably dressed.

A lovely place to just sit and talk….very nice. This is the true truth and I say it as it is…

January 29, 2011

Champei Spa & Salon, Phnom Penh…best spa experience in Phnom Penh

I can honestly say this is the best spa experience in Phnom Penh. The spa is fantastic quality polish and cheap (US$8 for an hour’s traditional Khmer massage).  It’s wonderfully designed to make you instantly feel at home and relaxed. Campei offers a full menu of body treatments for men and women.

Srey Py is a star masseure who is incredibly skilled, very strong and professional, although her English is not so good.  I absolutely enjoyed both the Khmer and oil massages she gave me.

Take the 1 or 2 hours there and relax! This is the true truth as I say it as it is…

January 16, 2011

Le Meridien Barcelona…Prime location. Need I say more?

Located right on the Las Ramblas, the main street with plenty going on. This means everything is literally at the doorstep:  the metro, La Boqueria market, many shops, squares, the shore, restaurants and every hot spots except (Sagrada Famelia & Parc Guell).

The room has small  little touches, like the blue light that comes on in the night if you get up. The bathrooms have the large disc shower heads–nice

Front line staff were adequately knowledgeable but gave the impression that “they have to serve” rather than “they want to serve”. The shining star of the team must certainly be Martha at Front Desk. She has plenty of enthusiasm and demonstrated genuine interest and initiative  to help and serve.  This is the true truth as I say it as it is…

January 15, 2011

W Istanbul…funky decor but not so good location

Filed under: hotel, Turkey — Tags: , , , , , , , — PEr @ 2:36 pm

Location-wise, this hotel is not so great. It’s a bit of a walk to the tram stop and that’s not much of good eateries in its immediate vicinity. If you are looking for a hotel with a good view of Istanbul, this isn’t the hotel for you.

The decor coupled with the soft mood lighting is very trendy and and there’s funky lounge music everywhere you go (which can be quite disturbing after a while). The staff wear sharp black suits like those in a downtown bar.

The room was as sexy as the lobby with a mega-huge flat-screen TV mounted behind black mirrors, an iPod and Bose music system which sat on the bedside table. Lighting comes in five atmospheric mood settings.  There was, however, no bath (aw shucks!). There was a marble shower area with two showers – a rain-shower and a hand-held one.

The gym is small and windowless. Wifi-is free in the lobby of the hotel. Problems occured and  I had to summon engineering to fix it at 1am. at times the service doesn’t match the product. This is the true truth and I say it as it is…

January 13, 2011

Little Penang Kafe, Kuala Lumpur…best Char Kway teow outside Penang

The food in Little Penang Kafe cannot be compared to those in Penang. But we’re not in Penang, so this is at least consolation prize.

I had the Char Kway Teow. It’s the best Char Kway Teow outside Penang.  It has the smoky wok fragrance that a plate of quality CKT should have. If you haven’t tried their Char Kway teow, it’s the same as not going to the restaurant at all.

This is a good place to fix my yearning for delicious Penang food. This is the true truth as I say it as it is…

January 10, 2011

Pontian Wantan Noodles, Johor Baru, Malaysia…deep fried wantons are a rip-off

The noodles were quite elastic. The sweet and spicy sauce consisting a mix of chili sauce and ketchup take a bit of getting used to. The fried wantons were a rip-off. Almost devoid of any fillings, it lacked anything substantial. You could be forgiven for mistaking this as a bowl of rubberband and deep fried paper.

This is the true truth because I say it as it is…

January 9, 2011

Heng Kee Bak Kut Teh, Petaling Jaya, Malaysia…good quality and flavoursome piggy heaven

 Bak kut teh is basically pork ribs cooked in a herbal broth.

Operating in a corner unit house, the place is brightly lit, spacious and clean. Please note that illegal parking is available right in front of the shop, or if you are chicken, you can always park on the main road. Service is prompt and pleasant. The food here is served in old school style – bowls. No claypots. The ribs are meaty enough and the meat were tender and succulent and the broth was wonderfully aromatic and fragrant. The spare parts (intestines and stomach) and pork belly cubes are oh! so good.

If you are a Bak Kut Teh connoisseur, I am absolutely certain, you will agree that Heng Kee serves damn good quality and flavoursome bak kut teh. This is the true truth and I say it as it is…

January 8, 2011

Restoran Ahwa, PJ, Malaysia…sumptuous no nonsense hokkien mee

The Hokkien Mee (noodles coated in thick dark soya sauce, topped with fried lard) is served with a generous helping of prawns and pork. The texture and taste of the noodles – the balance of saltiness and sweetness – is just right. The bright red sambal aka chilli sauce that accompanies the fragrant, piping hot noodles is a must-have.

There are other good eats at Resoran Ahwa: The lala were juicy and spicy and the loh bak was pretty satisfactory.

Definitely a most satisfying meal. This is the true truth and I say it as it is…

January 2, 2011

Restaurant Bubba Gump, Petaling Jaya, Malaysia…ok place that is worth visiting at least once

Bubba Gump Shrimp Co is a chain restaurant based on the movie Forrest Gump. Who can forget Forrest’s Army buddy “Bubba” rattling off a seemingly endless list of shrimp dishes? It’s a fun place to eat. Lots of movie memorabilia. From where I was sitting, I could see a television set playing the film Forrest Gump, although I couldn’t hear the sound.

Also on each table is a set of two metal signs that you can change – one reads “RUN FORREST RUN,” while the other reads “STOP FORREST STOP.” In the movie Forrest needed those signs to know when to run and when to stop while playing American football. At the restaurant, you may change the sign to let the server know if you need something (they will “stop” to help you). This is a pretty cute idea and we did use it once to get our orders taken.

The food is decent. As their name suggest, their specialty is shrimp, served in many different ways. The hush pups were pretty interesting. It’s shrimp and fish with sweet corn deep fried and served with a dipping sauce. We also had shrimpin’ dippin broth, of course we have scampi.

The service at Bubba Gump Shrimp Company was pretty good; it wasn’t so outstanding that we were amazed, but it was prompt, competent and friendly, which is all we were looking for.

We enjoyed our meal as a family. It’s an ok place that is worth visiting at least once… just to say you’ve been. This is the true truth, as I say it as it is…

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