Pekanbaru, Indonesia

Hazeeq stepping out of the plane like a child star

Hazeeq stepping out of the plane like a child star

I got back from my 4D3N trip from Pekanbaru some time ago and colleagues were asking,

How was Pekanbaru?

We were  small group of 5 people. Our little family of 3 including my parents in law. I have to be honest – not much to shout about unless one is planning for a trip to Bukit Tinggi. There were only 3 highlights of the trip

  • Amaris Hotel
  • Pitek Lanang
  • Masjid Besar

I sound like a miserable traveller already.

AMARIS HOTEL PEKANBARU

There couldn’t be a better hotel like Amaris. We were very grateful for the early check-in. And more thankful for the offer of a late check-out. Amaris seems busy this week – catering to meetings and small workshops. A lot of corporate clients appears really important walking through the front door.

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Our non smoking room has a comfortable King size bed, a small TV with only one particular channel we understand and enjoy which is HBO, complimentary drinking water, water dispenser (hot & cold) just outside our room at the corner of the stairs, cooling air conditioning and a decent view.

We don’t have a mini fridge – but it’s okay. Although we have a water dispenser, sometimes the water seems to run out. Thank God I brought a mini thermos so Hazeeq could still have his milk at a good temperature.

Breakfast selection was commendable – I loved the coffee and the fried rice a lot. Hazeeq on the other hand loved the keropok and juice.

PITEK LANANG

This was the restaurant situated just outside our hotel opposite the small road. We had our main meals there almost everyday. If not for lunch, then for dinner. They have both Western and Indonesian cuisine. I loved its pecel lele the most. ONce I got bored of having white rice, I ordered its nasi goreng. It did not taste like the ones we had in Malaysia. They were in fact very rempah-y.

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We did try the special Murtabak and Sate Padang at another warung – that too tasted weird. Edible and interesting but weird to the palate.

MASJID BESAR

Like I’ve mentioned earlier, there is not much to do at Pekanbaru. It’s good for elderly tourist because you get to walk slowly and soak in the experience of being in a foreign country without having to rush for its public transport and such. Shopping was biasa. We did went to the Ramayana store but was fooled into thinking that we could get a discount. It did not display properly that only those with store cards get discount on merchandise. Sgtlah sik transparent.

Despite that, going to it’s Masjid Besar was WOW.

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Perhaps I haven’t been to a big masjid for quite some time – I thought it was interesting to have a huge area within the masjid compound that allows the public to come by and exercise (riadah) in the evenings. In a way, people would not have the idea that masjid is only for praying. Instead, a place where human beings from all walks of life regardless muslim or not can gather at the area as a community and a family. That we learn to perform riadah in a respectable way yet still being able to achieve one’s goals of either burning calories or just keeping fit.

Although our daily schedule involved a lot of eating and lazing around, both my in-laws were happy. Eventhough they had to visit a miserable museum as well. Ha ha. Seeing them enjoying the short trip was enough to make us happy too. But perhaps we’ll choose a better destination next time. With also cheap tickets from Air Asia.

4 days in pekanbaru? too long.. he he

Review : Photobook with Foto-Zzoom

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I am a fan of photobooks. Especially after seeing my own wedding photos eternalized in a pretty, thick book back in 2010. The photos won’t be torn, smudged or damaged in any way unless the book itself caught fire. Since then, I have been eye-ing on a few sites which offer these services and lately I came across Foto-Zzoom.

Foto-Zzoom allows customers to create their photobook in less than 15 minutes. I mean who would have time to actually sit down in front of the computer for hours playing editor. Not to mention the pain of having to adjust the settings and size of the pictures especially on photos with poor resolutions. Well, at Foto-Zzoom they will try to solve the headache for you as you order the book in 3 simple steps.

1. Choose the size and design of the book.

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2. Key in your personal and payment details

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3. Upload your pictures. Do bear in mind that the ‘ORDER NOW’ button would not light up until you have sufficient number of photos uploaded based on the size of the photobook you chose. Having done that, all you have to do is sit back and relax while the designing team does the editing for you. This will take a few days.

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Once that is done, they will send you a link for the finished product to your email so you may review and discuss amendments (if any) with the team before it gets published.

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The photobook was couriered by City-Link and it arrived on my doorstep safe and sound in one beautiful masterpiece. Even Pekanbaru doesn’t look as mundane as how it was during our little family trip few months ago.

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A photobook would look great on anybody’s coffee table. If you place your order now, you will get discounts as the site is having a promotion with the upcoming Raya. Have fun!