Langkawi 2018 : Grand Continental Langkawi Hotel

I was taken by surprise the number of foreign tourist at this hotel. China tourist. How is it that I have not come across them before? Then I realized that its got to do with the type of hotel I chose this time round, Grand Continental Langkawi HOtel. And what an interesting lot they are. HA HA.

GCL Hotel is a 3 star hotel located in Kuah near a small shopping mall which you could go to by foot in 53 seconds. A reflexology and massage service is also located beside the hotel at the same building.

I booked a Standard Triple Room which has 1 Double Bed and 1 Single Bed which costs me RM875.32 including tax for a 5D4N stay. It has a mini fridge which I liked. With its complimentary coffee and such. The toilet has both a shower and a bath tub. But I did not feel like soaking in it because the tub was old and it felt icky. My son however loved the tub and he managed to come up with a mini movie in it while playing with his figurines.

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The facilities are OK. 1 restaurant. 1 swimming pool. No gym. The staff were super friendly and helpful. The only thing that puts me off was the presence of a particular group of tourist. 2 buses of them at one time, at least. With a change of group probably every 3-4 days. They are not mean. Or evil. But they are robust and rowdy. Which can appear selfish?

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However, since they are bringing business to the hotel and also Langkawi – it is something perhaps we local tourist have to accommodate or make adjustments. Or complain. 

They can be very loud in the hallway early in the morning or late at night. To some of them, it is of a normal decibel. It is their way of communication. We learnt to shut our ears. HA ha.

Our little family also  learnt that it would not be a good idea to go for the breakfast buffet too early in the morning. We initially went down at 700AM and the crowd was just overwhelming. Thankfully there are still sensible queues at the Roti Canai and Egg Station. The slices of bread however were gone in minutes as the guests loved to pile lots of them in one plate at one go. Maybe they really like the jam.

Pushing and shoving can be normal to them so since I’m quite small sized, I avoid the crowd. After all, we were in no rush to do any activities early in the morning nor did we sign up for any tour excursions – so we could wait for them to finish before we help ourselves to the buffet. We started going for breakfast near 900 AM.

I really want to applaud the staff for they were very patient with the mess, the frequent orders by theses tourists to top up the food etc. They had smiles plastered to their face and kind words (always) when in contact with both local and foreign guests.

Despite its wonderful location and great price for facility, I might reconsider staying at his hotel in the future. For the above reason. My sister told me the situation would probably be the same for other 3 star hotels. This would mean having to choose a homestay, a boutique hotel or small resort like Tok Senik or a 4 – 5 star hotel next visit.

I look forward to suggestions.

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Review : Anggun Ayu Spa Royal Bali, Bukit Katil

I walked out of the spa feeling like a battered fish. Nearly served with fries. Dahsyat kan perasaan tu? Ha ha ha.

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I found this spa on Instagram. And then an old blog review which praises mountains of the place. Indeed, the place is pleasing to the eyes especially with the sound of Gamelan music in the background. The scent was mystical. Everything felt magical.

Until the masseuse stepped in.

I have had a Balinese massage before. In Bali itself. It was what I remembered as very relaxing, very soothing and pleasant experience. The pressure on your body was just nice and you don’t feel violated. Hence I was expecting a similar experience in this spa. Unfortunately it wasn’t as nice on the massage part.

I understand that you need to engage with the client. It is very comforting to know that you are asking if the pressure was alright with me but once I say, “It’s a bit too hard” – please take note and lighten the pressure instead of saying “It’s because your body have not had a massage for a very long time, it’s angin“. And it doesn’t help with the repetitive question of “sakit tak?” if you know that my answer will be “yes, sakit” and still keep that sort of pressure on me. I almost had doubts if the person massaging me was an android or something cause everything sounded so monotonous and scripted.

I was hoping to just you know… sink in my thoughts but she started asking me about the election. And what startled me most was when she asked me Who I voted for’. That is just overboard.

The Scrub on the other hand was a better experience although at times you feel like your modesty is being violated a bit. Terpampang susu kantung kat depan. urghhh.. Perhaps I need to try more spas to ensure whether this is a common practice of otherwise. It felt weird. After the scrub, I get to soak in the jacuzzi for 20 mins. My 1 hour 30 mins session ended with a lemongrass drink. The package cost me RM200.

WILL I GO THERE AGAIN?

I will think about it.

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Review : Bukan Sekadar Homeschooling by Khadijah Gani

There are certain books that I need to read in Bahasa Melayu so that meaning dia sampai. First is the Quran Tafsir cause I’m not that urban like that. Second being the Hadith related books and the rest such as Parenting Books especially the ones which are written pertaining to the local climate. Rasa macam tak dan je baca parenting books omputih but you find it hard to relate to the Malaysian setting.

Hence chancing upon this book was a rare find. Especially when I’m not looking for it.

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It was one of those days when I decided to have a look at our local bookstore which is not as popular as MPH or POPULAR or BORDERS. Kedai jual alat tulis biasa je.. when I came across this book on the shelves. The title enticed me to explore the book because it has ‘homeschooling’ on it.

I was expecting a book that outlines syllabus of homeschoolers and what not. Instead it offered more than just that – to me, it was a book about Parenting along the lines of Islamic teaching. And of course I had to find out who Khadijah Gani is. And what a lovely person she turned out to be. And she has other books too – which is WOw. I will look for it later.

It was a great read with a motherly tone. It was not condescending. Meaning as a young parent yg tgh belajar kita tak rasa bangang bila baca buku tuh. Ha ha ha.  It was a very humbling piece. It felt like Khadijah Gani was there with me  – teaching me dengan lemah lembut from her personal experience of raising 4 children of her own. I read it religiously. I have been tagging tips, special doas and public figures to follow up on in the book. It’s not that neat but now that I’ve learnt how to tag books more efficiently and kemas from Ayesha, I believe the outcome would be neater once I re-tag it all again.

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I liked how Khadijah Gani was able to connect Science with Islam. It was very enlightening. Sometimes people need to hear about healthcare advice from another mother, not a doctor to justify –  why a child needs to wean, why vaccines are a safe bet and why as mothers we need to take care of ourselves (mental  health). Because if as health practitioners we try to impart some knowledge, sometimes, within an Islamic community we are labelled as pro-Zionist and other hurtful names. Whereas if it comes from a mother from a similar religious background – perhaps members of the community can take a moment to reflect on the matter and make an informed decision on what is best for their health and their children.

I would recommend this parenting book to anybody who is willing to learn the Islamic perspective in raising a child. It has duas, recommendations on what further reading we parents can pursue. It touches on sometimes the most simplest things in life that we encounter as parents when we deal with children. I bought it for RM 29 which is a bargain especially when you gain so much from the things you can learn from the book. InsyaAllah.

#sayasuka

Review : Bedrock Hotel, Ipoh

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We booked a room at this boutique hotel for 3D2N in an Executive Deluxe room that has a SuperSized King Bed through Agoda.Com . I did not want Mr Husband to book our hotel because his taste can be horrible.I paid a total of RM 538.63 including breakfast for our stay.

It was actually a choice between Ritz Garden Hotel and Bedrock. I was hesitant at first as I could not find legit reviews written by Muslim travellers regarding the place. Thankfully enough, Bedrock Hotel appeared on the Have Halal Will Travel (HHWT) website which means InsyaAllah the place will be clean and the food served is Halal. So, I guess I could say HHWT website gave me that vote of confidence to choose this hotel over The Ritz Garden. And I think I made a good choice.

The hotel was very easy to find as we navigate our way with WAZE. It also has a very interesting design and I couldn’t help chuckling as I enter its main door as an inside joke come in mind. It was very Dynasty-ish. Macam nak pergi jumpa Emperor kat dalam hotel. If my siblings were here with our mom – we’d probably be acting out the ‘wansui wansui wanwansui‘ part. (that was the inside joke thingy).

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My expectations of a good stay were not only met but Bedrock Hotel provided more with a big big WOW

  1. We had complimentary snacks upon arrival – mini popcorn with a can of coke and two cartons of Iced Lemon Tea drinks! I guess it would depend on what they have to give at the time. And there was a mini orientation of how things work in the room such as the Coway and the Nespresso machine by the employees. Which was fantastic.
  2. A very spa-like bath tub experience as Epsom Salt was also provided for an exfoliating soak and what not. That was like wahhhh.. I want to rendam inside the tub until I become kismis. Not only that, I was also impressed with the bath gel they gave. They actually make good bubbles that stay on the surface of the water. You know how in movies the bubbles cover your chest and all? Yup, these bubbles did just that.
  3. An exquisite display of stones! Who knew they could look so pretty and interesting!
  4. A very muslim friendly room as it showed the direction of the kiblat. 20180414_204717.jpg
  5. The American breakfast was surprisingly delicious. macam dimasak dgn penuh kasih sayang.

 

As a mom, I loved how I don’t have to repeatedly boil water to prepare my kids drinks and milk. I felt very hydrated drinking as many glasses of water that I want to without having to ration my drinking water like in most hotels. Or having to buy extra drinking water outside.

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I still cannot get over my relaxing bath tub time at night when Mr Husband and the kids are asleep. I’d just put on the Goblin OST on my Spotify and immerse myself in the calmness of the situation. Gitew. Very ratu-like. It won’t be long before I re-enact a similar experience at home – but of course I need to find the Epsom salt first and not use garam bukit ke apa rite..

It was a pleasant stay especially after tiring days at Tambun Park and Cameron Highlands. If only they have in-house reflexology services. Ha ha ha.

 

Set pantang Spa & Ma . My review.

Local celebrities/ instafamous figures are popping out babies from their uterus like fart. And they seemed to be using almost the same postnatal services and baby products. Lately natalis postnatal treatment and happykiddo are appearing quite frequent on my feed. I had a look at the price of their packages. Ermmm.. maybe not for me. I will have my own mother as my confinement lady and I will buy my own confinement set.

When I had Ee 6 years ago, I did not use any set berpantang. (confinement set) But when I had Ninie, I thought I’d give them a go. I knew I was not going to consume much of pils or jamu, hence I chose Spa & Ma because the selection of items are more for external use as opposed to having to eat them.

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Part of my reasons for opting this set are;

  1. Relatively cheap as compared to other postnatal sets. It retails at about RM300 plus but I bought it for RM192 including postage on Shopee.
  2. It smells nice and less herby. I enjoyed using its body scrub and intimate feminine wash. It leaves that fresh and minty feeling down below. Especially bila kita dah bertekang kan from all the heat and blood.
  3. It had a FREE TRADISIONAL BENGKUNG. Previously I bought a long body corset from this very scandalous company which guaranteed me a lifetime warranty but I can’t seem to fit in it anymore this time. And my previous seller is no where contactable now.
  4. The set included a manual to help you navigate through the many items in the package.

Unfortunately I found a few major flaws. The tungku had a very herbal smell to it which the cockroaches love. I had difficulties to maintain the dryness and hygiene aspect of the material. If I coverwrap it, it would not dry. If I keep it in high or secluded places – the roaches can still find it. In the end, I used my moms tungku – pure, original batu sungai.

The Gamat emulsion had no expiry date on its bottle. And the Kelapa Dara Oil too does not have any protective foil or cap to prevent contamination for it to be safe for consumption. Some may argue that it is organic but still biarlah penutup dia mcm yg botol mineral tu pun OK. Ni tak.. so I was not really convinced of its safety.

*product owner would probably say I bought a fake set online*

The Jamu capsules on the other hand was properly sealed, labelled with ingredients and had an expiry date. I took the trouble to go through each of the ingredients, which is a good thing. They have properly cautioned that it is not safe for pregnant women. Additional readings of the ingredients persuaded me not to consume it while I was still lactating. Now that I have stopped breastfeeding and expressing breast milk, I think its time to take care of my health properly. Perhaps slimming down a size or 2 eh? With this jamu? Cause my plantar fasciitis flares up once in a while and it hurts.

Tapi takut plak nak makan. Ha ha ha.

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