Wednesday, 26 August 2015

EsTrails: Orchard; Gardens by the Bay; Marina Bay Sands, Singapore

Hello beautiful earthlings!
Since it is my day off, why not post two blog posts for today! This post is dedicated to our first day in SIN!

The first thing in Singapore that caught our attention was the giant chicken skewers in the middle of baggage claim! Mom even wanted to have her solo photo taken,
There was a taxi counter in the airport where they offer taxis that would accommodate the size of our group.  We waited for just about three minutes for our taxi to arrive.  It was not a long wait. I think the taxi ride costs us between SGD20-30.
The accommodation we had was about 20 to 30 minutes away from the airport.  After checking in, we decided to roam around the city.

There was a little 7-Elevn store in Lavender LRT station.  We were told that we should just get the travel cards they have for SGD10.  I honestly think that we were ripped off that time since you could only use SGD5 as your travel money.  We just lost the other half because we bought the card but I guess we had a souvenir at the end of it?

We took the LRT going to Orchard so that we could have our late lunch.
We got off Orchard and went in a shipping mall there.  I cannot remember the name of the mall but when we went in, the first thing we saw was their cosmetic section.  They also had a food court in the basement where we had food.

I had my food in Tang's Market.  Of course I had to had Singapore's well known Hainanese chicken rice.  It was so good but I was really starting to feel conscious with what I was eating.  My normal diet didn't involve that much rice.  The rice was actually buttered garlic rice that made it lean to the naughtier side.

We took the LRT going to Gardens of the Bay to watch the light show at night.

The light show was beautiful!

Across the flower-like trees is the Marina Bay Sands hotel.  The hotel's structure is magnificent.  It really amazed me.  We were told that you could go to the bar in the hotel and have a couple of drinks.  that was the perfect place where you'd see a much perfect view of the light show.  When we got to the bar area, only guests were allowed to sit inside.  Non-guests were allowed to order from their menu however, they offered us to just sit at the entrance/hallway.

There are a lot boutiques in the hotel and MCM was the boutique that made me cry, literally.  I wanted an MCM backpack but could never afford one!  I don't think I would have the guts to spend so much on just one item.
Here' s my vlog of our first day in Singapore:
I'm so sorry if this post is quite lacking.  We didn't do much on the first day since we got to Singapore late and we were quite hangry that we just ended up going home earlier than expected.
Please look forward to the next Singapore related posts and hopefully the content would be better than this.
Peace & Love!
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EsTrails/Review: Gusti Bed & Breakfast, Singapore

Hello beautiful earthlings!
Didn't I say in the last post we'd meet in a Singapore related post? This post is dedicated towards the accommodation we stayed in Singapore.
We found out about Gusti B&B through Agoda and booked there.  However, you could also book your stay directly at Gusti's website.
Gusti is more of a hostel type accommodation and it was not that difficult to be located as long as you'd have the exact address with you.  It is located in the Lavender area and is well situated.  Right beside the B&B is a cafe that specializes in cute pastries.  It was such a shame that I didn't get to eat there.  There was also Burger King around the area, 7-Eleven, and a shopping centre with a lot of food stalls.

When we got outside the door of the accommodation, we were greeted with a lot of stairs!  There was no elevator and it was quite difficult for us since we had three huge luggages with 20 kilos each plus our little hand carry luggages.  This is just a little head's up to those considering this.
Before entering the reception or any floors, we had to take off our shoes.  This is a huge thing in the Asian culture.

We were greeted by Audrey, the owner of the place.  She is fluent in English and it was so easy to communicate with her.  She was really lovely to us and very helpful and friendly.  She gave us plenty of advice when it comes to roaming around the city and answered all the questions we had.  She even gave us her mobile number so if we had any problems and questions, we can just message her through Viber and she would reply to any of the queries.

This was the kitchen area of our floor which was on the third floor. The kitchen provided all the utensils needed when we had breakfast.   For breakfast, the staff would leave a loaf of bread with several spreads at the counter with the toaster.
There was also a note on the sink saying that we should look after ourselves and leave the kitchen neat as we found it.

Gusti does not offer private or en suite bathrooms.  All the bathrooms are shared with the other guests.  We hesitated at first since we really did not like sharing our bathroom with anyone but the bathrooms were clean. The staff would constantly clean the bathroom everyday.
The photos above were toilets from the 1st floor.  The bathroom we had in the 3rd floor had both the toilet and the shower in one cubicle.  Each floor would have two cubicles.

Each floor would have a different set up of living rooms.  This was our living room for four days.  I really enjoyed the decorations, especially the books!

There was also a dining area in the living room.  It was small enough, probably good for 6 people.
I unfortunately did not get to take a photo of our room but if you'd go to their website under "Rooms and Rates", there would be a photo featuring a room with three bunk beds. 
I would recommend this accommodation who are in a budget.  I personally think that this place would suit students or friends travelling together.  I would not really recommend it for families with smaller children since the accommodation requests all guest to observe silence all the time.
The wifi connection was great when we stayed there.  Each floor had it's own wifi connection therefore guests did not have to worry about poor connectivity.
I have some clips of Gusti B&B in my vlog here:
I hope that this post is somewhat helpful especially to those who are looking for accommodations to stay in Singapore.  If you have any questions, don't hesitate to contact the place or even me.
Have a lovely week ahead!
Peace & Love!
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EsTrails: Wandering around the streets of KL

Hello beautiful earthlings!
This is my last post of my Kuala Lumpur travel. Don't worry I have more travel posts to type write soon!
When we were in the taxi going to the Atmosphere 360, we saw an AlBaik sign.  If you grew up in Jeddah like me, AlBaik was the fast food chain.  Their chicken was (as far as I can remember) the best chicken ever! Even better than KFC or Jollibee's chicken!
So after doing all the touristy things in our list, we asked the staff in our hotel whereabouts AlBaik.  They said it was just about 10 minutes away so we walked wherever out feet led us.

We were so happy to see that sign when we were on the streets!

But our hopes were crushed that day.  Apparently, the store was already closed for some time.  We were hangry devastated.
I think Batman is trying to reach my mom! Haha
We kept walking towards where the Pavillion shopping mall.  The mall is huge and looks fancy.  It reminded me so much of Dundrum Shopping Centre but bigger and a lot more alive and vibrant during the night.

We went straight to the food court since we were hungry.  The food court offers a lot of restaurants that offer a variety of food from Korean to Malaysian and even Western food.  My sister Nikki and I went to the Korean section of the food court called Sam-Sam.

The food we had was so affordable! I could not remember the exact price of the meal that I got but it was just below 20 RM and the side dishes were included.  I got the japchae meal.  I was quite shocked to see that the japchae was served with rice! Too much carbs!  But I loved it!

We knew that there is Baskin Robbins so after we ate, we came rushing towards the store.  Baskin Robbins is the ice-cream parlour of our childhood.

When we were still living in Jeddah, we'd have two big gallons of ice-cream for our birthday! It was amazing!

We bought a gallon.  The staff made us pick three flavour to pack in the tub.  We chose pistachio, mango and of course green tea!  They were great!  We were like kids in a theme park with no worries eating such a marvellous treat.

One of the things written in my summer bucket list was to drink a green tea frappe and I crossed it off the day I got in Asia.  I bought my frappe just next door Baskin Robbins.  The drink was nomtastic! I hope we have it here in Ireland though.

And yes, I didn't blur my name this time.  Why? Because it is rare that Starbucks spells my name right! Even though it is such a common name.

I looked like a happy kid in this photo!
I know I keep linking my KL vlog but I have clips of us in the Pavillion!
So that is it for my KL related post.  It is bittersweet for me.  I really enjoyed our one day stay in this beautiful city.  I do recommend it to everyone.
I will see you guys in my next post.  It could be a Singapore related post or a beauty related post.  Who knows! Have a good weekend y'all!
Peace & Love!
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Wednesday, 19 August 2015

EsTrails: Batu Caves, KL

Hello beautiful earthlings!
This is actually  my second last KL post!
So like the title suggest, this is a post dedicated on our trip to Batu Caves.  It is about 20 minutes away from the hotel we stayed in which is located in the Bukit Bintang area as far as I know.

We were amazed by the huge statue right in front of the caves.  I was also impressed with the details on the temples!

According to our taxi driver, the steps to go inside the cave was 270! Or it could be more! This place will surely test your fitness level!

Here are the opening and closing hours of the cave.  I bet it would have been pretty at night!

A little tip for the ladies going there, avoid wearing shorts and short skirts! They are not allowed and you'd have to rent a scarf to cover your legs.  Renting those does not cost much.  You would have to pay 5 RM and they would give you back 2 RM once you return it back at the bottom of the cave.
I was wearing a transparent maxi skirt but it was not allowed either :(
I know it is impossible to not wear shorts or short skirts because of the hot weather, so just bring a large scarf that can cover your legs instead!

As we were going up the stairs to the cave, we noticed a bunch of monkeys around the side.  I knew this because my classmate who went here before mentioned it to me.  He also said that we should not bring food because the monkeys would take it from us.

I had to take a break from walking up the stairs because it was tiring!

I was delighted I beat that 270 steps!

This was the first thing we saw when we got to the top.

This is what the cave looked like.

There were a couple of mini-temples in the cave where people were actually praying.

This was me wearing the rented scarf.  The ladies at the bottom wrapped it around our waists so we didn't have to worry about retying it.

Another tip if you go here, wear appropriate footwear!  My sandals were comfortable to wear but the stairs made things a little difficult for my poor feet!

The lighting in this photo is poor but let's just enjoy the silhouettes of the statues above me.
Going there was quite an experience starting from going up to the caves to going down. I do recommend it to those going to Kuala Lumpur.  Even if you don't practice Hinduism, go and admire the statues as a form of artwork and have a little exercise! Haha
Watch my KL vlog here and see me and my sister get out of breath halfway through the 270 steps:
I still have one more KL related post! So see you there! Have an amazing week!
Peace & Love!
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