Friday, February 28, 2014

What to eat in Malacca?

Penang may be Malaysia’s unofficial food capital but Malacca’s cuisine isn’t particularly unknown. Home to a thriving Baba Nyonya culture (descendents of 15th and 16th-century Straits Chinese settlers who married local Malays), Malacca’s food scene has been thoroughly saturated by the Peranakan culture. Curries are lighter than Indian ones, vegetables are flavoursome and meats are neither spicy nor bland making Nyonya cuisine perfect for first-time visitors.

If you are planning to visit Malacca, you may also want to check our where to stay in Malacca post.

Nyonya Food 
Malacca’s Nyonya fare is the original and most authentic of the country’s Peranakan cuisine. Heavily influenced by Chinese and Malay ingredients, some of the most common ingredients in Nyonya cuisine are coconut milk, lemon grass, turmeric, screw pine leaves, chillies and sambal. Besides main meals, Malacca’s Nyonya pineapple tarts are uniquely popular – sinfully delicious, there are many stores scattered across Malacca’s landscape selling these pastries and locals will happily point you in the direction of their favourite stores if you ask them. Try San Shu Gong Food Industries’ (Jonker Street) heavenly double-buttered tarts.

Satay Celup 
A Malaccan institution, satay celup is a fondue-style meal with skewered raw and semi-cooked meats (such as chicken, beef, pork and seafood) that are cooked in a communal pot of scalding hot, thick peanut-based gravy. Besides the meats, there’s also a variety of vegetables including tofu, kangkung and more for customers to choose from. The restaurant prepares the skewered meats and vegetables and stores them in huge refrigerators – customers select their satay and then dip it into the boiling sauces to stew. The best places (Restoran Capitol, Restoran Ban Lee Siang) feature thicker, nuttier sauce than that of other places.

Chicken Rice Ball 
The state’s unofficial signature dish, this meal comprises rice, cooked in chicken stock, and moulded into golf ball-sized balls and served with delicious steamed chicken in soy sauce. It’s a simple dish yet it receives rave reviews, in large part due to its relative non-spiciness as well as subtle-yet-strong flavours. The best chicken rice ball restaurants are usually busy during lunchtime and dinner (the queues are well worth it though), so you’ll have to arrive early if you want to grab a table. Try Kedai Kopi Chung Wah and Hoe Kee (Jalan Hang Jebat) – they serve up some of the best chicken rice balls in the state.

Nyonya Food
Nyonya Food
Ikan Bakar 
Don’t leave Malacca without trying the ikan bakar (literally burnt fish in Malay). This grilled seafood dish has roots in Indonesia but the smoky flavour remains the same wherever you go. The fish (stingray) is marinated for hours with spices and sambal belacan (anchovy and chilli paste) and then grilled to perfection with banana leaves over a charcoal fire; a variation of this dish uses sotong (squid). It’s topped with healthy lashings of sambal sauce and sliced shallots; though it’s said to be a street snack (usually found with hawker stalls), in Malacca there are a few restaurants that specialize in it.

Fried Oysters
Best eaten piping hot, fried oysters are a favourite Chinese dish with Teochew/ Fujian origins and you’ll see this dish sold in almost all seafood restaurants, hawker centres and pasar malams in Malacca. Shucked oysters are stir fried with scrambled eggs, sliced onions, diced garlic, chives, chilli paste and soy sauce – the result is a soft, sticky and flavoursome dish. The best place to grab a plate is the Jonker Walk night market – the cook who stir-fries the oysters in a large wok (on the spot) will take requests – so you can tell him if you don’t want the dish too spicy and he’ll be more than willing to oblige.

Durian Cendol
The sinfully-sweet cendol is a quintessential part of Malacca’s street food culture. Made from coconut milk, lots of gula Melaka (palm sugar) and served with red beans, glutinous rice, grass jelly, creamed corn and pandan-flavoured worm-like ‘jellies’ (made from rice flour and dyed with green food colouring), cendol’s relative popularity makes it easy to find. You’ll come across an array of variants, the most popular one in Malacca being durian cendol. You would think that the durian-flavoured shaved ice drink would be an acquired taste but visitors say that after their first bowl, they’re left craving more.

Roti John
Essentially an omelette sandwich, Roti John is a popular street side snack (Malays are especially partial to it) in Malacca. Minced chicken, diced onions, eggs and diced red and green chillies are fried, then spread on a baguette loaf with tomato and chilli sauce and then grilled. Variations of this dish use beef, mutton and sardines. The seaside strip of Pantai Kundur plays host to more than a few hawker stalls that are Malacca’s roti john specialists.

Nasi Lemak
Malaysia’s official national dish, nasi lemak is so popular even the Chinese and Indians serve their own versions. At its very basic, nasi lemak comprises a plate of white rice cooked with coconut milk and pandan leaves. Accompanying it is sambal (anchovy, onion and chilli paste), an egg (boiled or fried), salted anchovies, cucumber slices and peanuts; popular complementary side orders include fried, curry or rendang chicken or beef. Locals say that this dish can be eaten no matter the time of day but tourists should be careful as the sambal can be rather spicy – keep a glass of ice water nearby when you dig in.

Where to shop in Bangkok?

Shopping in Bangkok is a day-and-night activity that runs parallel with the best in the West, while also giving a flavour of the cultural uniqueness of the East. Work your way through these experiences, and you’ll soon come to realise why Bangkok is such a famous shopping hub.

If you are planning to visit Bangkok, you may also want to check our where to stay in Bangkok post.

Bangkok Shopping Malls
In a city blessed with some of the world’s most sumptuous malls, how do you choose? Do you want bargains galore? Go to MBK. After the biggest and most trendy? CentralWorld is your ticket. How about classy? Make your way to The Emporium. Of course, if glamour makes you go wobbly at the knees, you will already have found Siam Paragon – the epitome of high-class Bangkok.

Chatuchak Weekend Market 
The market of all markets, Chatuchak Weekend Market is the ultimate. You will be amazed by its sprawling size, but perhaps even more so by the unbelievable variety of wares. Stumble across anything from vinyl records, beads, suits of armor to a live seahorse! Haggling is encouraged – just do so politely. Possibly the most exhilarating, chaotic and lively shopping experience that can be had anywhere in the world.

Asiatique the Riverfront 
Asiatique has successfully combined two of the most popular shopping experiences in the city: a night bazaar and a mall. Ten minutes downriver from Saphan Taksin BTS station this once-bustling international trade port has been transformed, with over 1,500 boutiques and 40 restaurants housed under a huge replica warehouse complex.

Siam Square 
Siam Square, like the city in which it is located, is an area of contrast. In essence it is the hub of all things cool, an individual expression point where styles are both shaped and surface (and resurface). Siam also holds claim to being the most expensive place to rent land in Bangkok. It is to the City of Angels, what Bond Street is to London and Fifth Avenue to New York.

Open: 10:00-22:00 
Location: Rama 1 Road opposite Siam Paragon 
How to get there: Take the BTS to Siam station

After-Dark Shopping 
In most cities nighttime means closing time. Not so, here in Bangkok. Come dusk, Khao San Road teems with unkempt travel wear. And Patpong Market’s tarpaulin covered stalls – each brimming with counterfeits or exotica - don’t even kick into life until the area’s office workers are tucked up in bed. Just two examples, among several, of Bangkok’s love affair with the after-dark shop.

Best time to go: after 20:00 
How to get there: taxi (Khao San), BTS Saladaeng (Patpong)

Pantip Plaza - Computer Shopping Mall 
An aspiring techno-geek? Then Pantip Plaza is your heaven on earth. Looking for a new mobile, notebook or the latest gadget? That’s right, Pantip. Packed from floor to ceiling with stalls and shops selling all kinds of computer, electronic paraphernalia and even hard-to-find camera lenses, make sure to allow enough time to explore this bustling indoor IT mall. 

Best time to go: 10:00 - 21:00 (every day). 
How to get there: From BTS Chidlom, either hire a tuk-tuk/taxi or walk ten minutes down Ratchadamri Road past Central World on your left, over the Saen Saeb canal and then left on Phetburi Road. Walk about two blocks, and Pantip Plaza should be on your left.

Pratunam is well-known among locals as the wholesale fashion district, where street ware meets odd fashion meets tomorrow’s trends. Shopping here is fun because there’s a whole gamut of accessories to dress you up from head to toe a a bargain. The original wholesale market is outdoors, around Indra Hotel and Baiyoke Sky Hotel, while the air-conditioned malls are located across the main street.

Best time to go: morning (for outdoor shopping)
BTS: Ratchathewi, Chidlom 
How to get there: taxi, or walk about 15mins from the two BTS stations

Chinatown Market
There is something oddly kitsch, charming and nostalgic about Bangkok’s Chinatown. Walking through the many little streets you might find yourself in a market, a shophouse-lined backstreet or a crowded space jam-packed with hawkers of every ilk. Along with many gold shops, you’ll also find sacks of roasted chestnuts, sequins, feather boas, eccentric virility boosters and martial art weapons. 

Best time to go: after 17:00 MRT: Hua Lamphong 
How to get there: taxi, or walk about 10mins northwest of the MRT

How to get to Resorts World Sentosa?

Resorts World Sentosa is one of the two integrated resorts (a casino, casino hotels and non-gambling attractions sugarcoating it). It is on Sentosa Island, a popular island resort in Singapore. Resorts World Sentosa is around 10 minutes from Singapore’s Central Business District by taxi and easily accessible via buses, MRT rail system, taxis and cars.

Getting to Resorts World Sentosa by MRT

HarbourFront MRT Station is a station on North East Line (purple line) and Circle Line (yellow line). Warning: If you are coming from a central station like Dhoby Ghaut, do not take Circle Line to get to HarbourFront MRT Station. This will make you travel through a large circle around central Singapore.

Once in HarbourFront, the most convenient and the cheapest way is to get Sentosa Express mono rail from VivoCity Shopping Mall which will take you to Resorts World Sentosa (indeed it goes all the way to the beaches of Sentosa Island). Second option is a simple and nice board walk to Resorts World Sentosa from VivoCity. The covered walk-way has a very nice view. It takes around 20 minutes to walk from VivoCity to Resorts World Sentosa. You can also take a public bus RWS 8 outside VivoCity and HarbourFront Station bus stops (2 SGD).

Taking the MRT to Resorts World Sentosa

Another way to reach RWS is Cable Car. If you take it, you will land to a hill on Sentosa which is 15 minutes walk from RWS. It is pricey but the view is great.

Getting to Resorts World Sentosa by bus
There are several public buses to Resorts World Sentosa. You can take 188R Choa Chu Kang Interchange and or any 188R bus stops or 963R from Woodlands Regional Interchange and or any 963R bus stops. There are two more buses, NR1 and NR6 which goes from Marina to Yishun and Senkang.

You can take any of the ordinary public buses numbered 65, 80, 93, 188, 855, 10, 30, 97, 100, 131, 143, 145 and 166 to VivoCity and access RWS from there.

Free bus shuttle to Tourist Shuttle to Resorts World
If you are staying in Concorde Hotel, Mandarin Orchard, Grand Hyatt, Shangri-La Hotel or Orchard Hotel, you can take a free shuttle bus to Resorts World Sentosa (see Resorts World Sentosa Shuttle Orchard Route). There is another free shuttle to RWS if you are staying in Marina Mandarin, Marina Bay Sands, Summer View, Carlton Singapore or Swissotel The Stamford (see Resorts World Sentosa Shuttle Bencoolen Marina Route).

Tourist Coaches
There are tourist coaches traveling between Johor Premium Outlets and Resorts World Sentosa (2 hours).

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Ten Budget Hotels in Hong Kong below US$100 per night

Both business and leisure travelers are looking for more ways to save their money on upcoming travel to Hong Kong and one of the best way to do that is to stay in a budget hotel in Hong Kong to cut cost on expensive hotel room prices. As a budget conscious traveler blog, we are happy to released a list of 10 hotels with below US$100 per night room rates. These Hong Kong budget hotels have also collected the best customer reviews and many are located near the city center and within walking proximity to MRT train stations and with their affordable room rates are a boon to both business and leisure travelers.

These budget hotels are shortlisted based on pricing and guests’ feedbacks. Many of these hotels are also located near the city center and within walking proximity to MRT train stations. Although Hong Kong hotels are known to be expensive, travelers can take relief that there are still cheap hotels to be found in Hong Kong.

Check out the ten Hong Kong hotels below US$100 here:

1)Island Pacific Hotel
With picture window views, 12-foot ceilings and a quiet West Central waterfront location, 4-Star Island Pacific Hotel is located near bus and tram to take you almost anywhere. Room rates in Island Pacific Hotel start from US$96 per night.

2) Mingle Place On The Wing
A 4-Star Hong Kong hotel in Central District (located in the heart of historic Sheung Wan), 47 room Mingle Place On The Wing offers exceptional convenience for the traveller with easy access to Hong Kong's key commercial, financial and shopping destinations. Room rates in Mingle Place On The Wing start from US$71 per night.

3) Butterfly on Morrison Boutique Hotel
Butterfly on Morrison Boutique Hotel, formerly known as only Butterfly on Morrison, is a 4-star, cozy European-style boutique hotel resides in Causeway Bay and caters mainly to international business travelers. Daily room rates start from $99.

4) Bishop Lei International House
Located in Hong Kong Central / Sheung Wan Area, 227-room and 4-Star Bishop Lei International House is near the Lan Kwai Fong area is famous for its restaurants, bars and nightlife. Room rates in Bishop Lei International House start from US$96 per night.

5) Dorsett Mongkok Hong Kong
Dorsett Mongkok Hong Kong, formerly known as Cosmo Hotel Mongkok, is a 100% smoke-free hotel in the heart of the cosmopolitan of Kowloon Peninsula, a four minute walk to the nearest Olympic subway station and a ten minute stroll to the diverse Nathan Road for restless shopping. Room rates in Dorsett Mongkok Hong Kong start from US$96 per night.

60 West Hotel is a serviced apartment stype hotel in Hong Kong.
6) Y-Loft Hostel Hongkong
3-Star Y-Loft Hostel Hongkong in Chai Wan is a nice youth hotel with reasonable price (in Hong Kong standards) and facilities. The hostel is near MRT and is easily accessible from every part of Hong Kong. Room rates in Y-Loft Hostel Hongkong starts from US$99 per night.

7) Cosmo Hotel Hong Kong
4-Star Cosmo Hotel Hong Kong in Wanchai is close to Causeway bay shopping area and MRT station. Time Square, one of the biggest shopping mall in Hong Kong, is walking distance away. Room prices in Cosmo Hotel Hong Kong starts from US$81 per night.

8) Hotel de Edge by Rhombus
4-Star Hotel de Edge by Rhombus in Hong Kong Central / Sheung Wan Area is near Sheung Wan metro station, or if you prefer the buses and trams, a short walk from Deveux Road where there are numerous stops. Room prices in Hotel de Edge by Rhombus starts from US$99 per night.

9) Cosmopolitan Hotel Hong Kong
This 4-Star hotel is only an 8-minute walk or 5-min ride from Times Square and the Causeway Bay MTR station. It also offers shuttle service to many major shopping areas including Times Square, HK Convention and Exhibition Centre, IFC Mall and Airport Express Line Hong Kong Station, and other parts on the Hong Kong Island. Room rates in Cosmopolitan Hotel Hong Kong starts from US$92 per night.

10) 60 West Hotel
4-Star 60 West Hotel is in Hong Kong Central / Sheung Wan Area is an new (opened in 2011) modern serviced apartment style hotel minutes away from the Sheung Wan MTR, Hong Kong-Macau Ferry Terminal, bus stops, and bus terminals. Room rates in 60 West Hotel starts from US$92 per night.

Westgate Wonderland - The largest rooftop mall playground in Singapore

Westgate Wonderland, the largest rooftop mall playground in Singapore, will be officially opening its doors on 26th February, (Wednesday). In Westgate Wonderland, your children will be able to experience and enjoy this one-of-a-kind fantasy garden themed playarea surrounded by oversized replicas of flora and fauna, a 10-metre tall tree house, and an enormous watering can that actually sprays water!

Located on level 4 of Westgate Shopping Mall in Jurong Gateway, Westgate Wonderland is open to children of all ages and free-of-charge. Other than 10-metre tall tree house and enormous watering can, there are giant insects in beautiful detail, lily pads and flowers. It has dry and wet areas and different play zones catering to children of varying age groups. Interactive elements include: a large watering can with an active spray nozzle; musical flowers with flower bud steel drums; blue bells that respond to touch with musical sounds and lights; and large flowers with spinning canopies that create a kaleidoscope of light patterns on the ground.

Doubling the fun for the little ones is the Kids Club (西城儿童俱乐部), a supervised play area for children aged four to 12 located one floor above Westgate Wonderland on Level 5. Kids Club will offer programmed activities amidst a 4,600-square foot thematic outdoor playground and an indoor clubhouse, thus creating a lively, fun and safe environment for children. Daily activities include obstacle races and treasure hunts. Thematic educational activities will be held on the weekends, such as marine life conservation workshops run by theme park S.E.A. Aquarium, arts and craft workshops by enrichment school Genius R Us, story-telling sessions by National Library Board volunteers and screenings of popular children’s films.  Housed within the Kids Club is also a reading corner stocked with books on loan from the National Library Board. Children can also look forward to group birthday celebrations every first weekend of the month.
Shoppers simply need to spend a minimum amount at Westgate to redeem their children’s free admission to the Kids Club.

Westgate Wonderland and Kids Club are among a host of family-friendly features at Westgate, which is positioned as a family and lifestyle mall. The mall is managed by CapitaMalls Asia, which is also behind the popular playgrounds at IMM Building, Sembawang Shopping Centre and Junction 8.

Westgate Wonderland - The largest rooftop mall playground in Singapore
Westgate Wonderland - The largest rooftop mall playground in Singapore
Photo - Today Online

Raising the bar higher for the two thematic playgrounds at Westgate, CapitaMalls Asia has specially engaged the services of Adirondack Studios, an established US theme park designer whose previous work includes attractions at Universal Studios and Disneyland, such as The Simpsons Ride at Universal Studios Florida and the Revenge of The Mummy roller-coaster ride at Universal Studios Singapore on Sentosa. CT-Art, a Singapore-based playground specialist, partnered Adirondack Studios on developing the two playgrounds.

Apart from Westgate Wonderland, the Family Zone on Level 4 will house a wide range of retailers that cater to children’s every need. These include enrichment centres I Love Learning Achievement Centre (new to market), Stalford Learning Centre, The Ballet School and Yamaha Music School; as well as activity and well-being centres BabySPA and My Gym. Parents can also shop for toys, clothing and accessories for their little ones at Avenue Kids, Adidas Kids, Baby Elephant, Kiddy Palace, Minitoons, and Tom and Stefanie. In addition, vitamins and health foods catering to children can be purchased at Vitakids. Those seeking to capture their loved ones’ special moments can visit Flash by Morffew, an established Australian photography studio specialising in children’s photography that is setting up its first outlet in Singapore at Westgate. For a dose of literature or to grab some stationery, parents can bring their children to Borders, the well-loved lifestyle bookshop and café returning to Singapore under the management of Popular Holdings. In addition, My First Skool child care centre can be found on Level 5 of Westgate. 

Monday, February 24, 2014

AirAsia Promotion 2014: Free Seats Booking

AirAsia launched Free Seats promotion to various destinations covered by AirAsia such as Singapore, Indonesia, Thailand, Cambodia, the Philippines, Taiwan, Japan, Korea and many more. By Free Seats promotion you will be able to book a seat for $0 (don’t get  excited a lot , you will pay $0 for your seats, but you will still have to pay for the taxes and charges). Booking period is from 24 February 2014 to 2 March 2014 for travel period between 1 October 2014 and 30 April 2015. This time, there are 500,000 free AirAsia seats available.

If you also book your hotel while booking the seats, AirAsiaGo will offer savings up to 75% in flights and 50% in hotels. Besides Asean countries, AirAsia X is offering low fares from RM169 (all-in, one way) on economy and RM669 on premium seats to Sri Lanka, Saudi Arabia, Australia, Japan, Taiwan, South Korea, Nepal and China from Kuala Lumpur.

You can free book to many destinations from Kuala Lumpur, Singapore, Jakarta, Bali, Bandung, Medan - Kualanamu, Makassar, Surabaya, Kota Kinabalu, Kuching, Penang, Johor Bahru, Don Mueang, Phuket, Chiang Mai, Chubu, Cebu and Manila to many destinations in Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia and Philippines.

Check out the full list of exciting AirAsia & AirAsia X destinations at AirAsia Free Seats Booking Promotion.

AirAsia's free seats booking promotion is a repeated and highly popular promotion. Since early 2013, AirAsia has offered this deal several time and this is the first offer of 2014. Back in April 2013, they offered 2 million free seats.

AirAsia Promotion 2014: Free Seats Booking
AirAsia Promotion 2014: Free Seats Booking

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Jetstar promotion 2014 : Everybody's Travelling Sale is back

Singapore based budget airline Jetstar Asia is back with Everybody's Travelling Sale. Book until 3 March 2014 (11 AM) and enjoy discounted air fares to selected destinations for selected trave periods.

Sale fare prices quoted below are all one way economy Starter fares and in Singapore dollars.

Only $34 for flights to Kuala Lumpur from Singapore
Only $44 for flights to Medan - Kualanamu from Singapore
Only $58 for flights to Penang from Singapore
Only $58 for flights to Surabaya from Singapore
Only $68 for flights to Phnom Penh from Singapore
Only $68 for flights to Jakarta from Singapore
Only $78 for flights to Yangon from Singapore
Only $78 for flights to Phuket from Singapore
Only $88 for flights to Bali from Singapore
Only $88 for flights to Bangkok from Singapore
Only $88 for flights to Darwin from Singapore
Only $98 for flights to Haikou from Singapore
Only $98 for flights to Siem Reap from Singapore
Only $128 for flights to Perth from Singapore

For all the discounted cheap flights offered by Jetstar, visit Jetstar Cheap Flight Specials and Airfare Deals.

Jetstar promotion 2014 : Everybody's Travelling Sale is back
Jetstar promotion 2014 : Everybody's Travelling Sale is back

Where to stay in Bintan?

Bintan Island of Indonesia is just 20 kilometers south of Singapore and one of the most popular and nearest weekend getaway destination from Singapore. Compared to its neighbour Batam Island, Bintan is more popular and more known as family oriented holiday destination. Since there are ferries to the island from Johor Bahru, it is also a popular tourist destination for residents of this Malaysian City.

The answer to where to stay in Bintan question is quite easy for many : Bintan Resorts. This area is very different from the rest and is a man-made holiday destination on the island.

Bintan Resorts (Lagoi)
One of the best and nearest family oriented holiday destination near Singapore, Bintan Resorts cover entire northern coast of Bintan Island and is accessible from Singapore with a 45 minutes ferry ride departing from Tanah Merah Ferry Terminal. The area is separated from other parts of Bintan and is quite well developed in terms of tourism with its high quality beach resorts, villas and golf courses. The beaches are beautiful with white sands and most of the resorts are built to a high standard. If you are heading to here, a serene and nice holiday is guaranteed but do not expect to experience real Bintan here.

If you have time, Tanjung Pinang (the largest town in Bintan) is 2-hours drive from Lagoi where you can enjoy cheap shopping and tasty local fare.

Bintan Resorts (Lagoi) is 55 minutes ferry ride from Singapore. The largest town on Bintan, Tanjung Pinang, is just
2 hour drive from here.

Tanjung Pinang
Tanjung Pinang, on south of Bintan island, is the biggest town on Bintan Island and has ferry and speedboat connections to Batam, Singapore (40 km away), and Johor Bahru. Tanjung Pinang is a trading, shipping, shopping and tourism "seafood" center in the region. The town has many seafood restaurants, and prices are low by Singaporean (or even Western) standards.

Although the town is not the most popular place to stay in Bintan for an ordinary tourist, it is a departure point to other Riau Islands and fishing trips. For hotels in the town, you can check Tanjung Pinang Bintan Hotels page.

Trikora Beach
Trikora, on the northeastern coast of Bintan, is a long stretch of separate beaches, with beaches numbered from south to north as one to four (satu, dua, tiga, empat in Indonesian). The best known is Trikora Beach Four (Trikora Empat), which is the northernmost bit, right next to the "border" with Bintan Resorts. Bintan Agro Beach Resort & Spa is one of the most popular resorts on Bintan Island catering mostly to locals and Singaporeans.

For other hotels and resorts in Trikora, you can check Bintan Trikora Beach Hotels page.

If you are heading to Bintan from nearby Singapore, try to take advantage of many Bintan travel deals advertised on coupon sites. Most of these includes ferry plus hotel stay with some extras like shopping tours and dinner coupons.

For more details on Bintan Resorts, check our post about the place : Bintan Resorts (Lagoi).

Singapore travel deal of the day : 4D3N Stay in Tokyo - Includes Return Air Ticket by Japan Airlines

Step into the diversified world of Japan! Experience the vibrant nightlife of the city in your 4D3N stay. Enjoy your time as you spend your time as Tokyo offers you a seemingly unlimited choice of shopping and entertainment. Witness the interesting clash of cultures in the city that preserves its history even as it moves on to a bigger scale! Visit the museums, temples and gardens of Tokyo and step into a world that is frozen in time. Get away to Tokyo today!

This 4D3N Stay in Shinagawa Prince Hotel, Tokyo deal is only for $558 instead of $888 (37% OFF). Travel Period is till 31 May 2014 with some blackout days. For fine print and terms and conditions visit this Tokyo travel deals web site.

Package Includes:
  • Return Air Ticket to Tokyo by Japan Airlines
  • 3-night accommodation at Shinagawa Prince Hotel

Flight schedule (subject to changes):
Singapore - Tokyo
  • JL 710 SINNRT ETD 0155hrs // ETA 0935 hrs    
  • JL 712 SINNRT ETD 0820hrs // ETA 1605 hrs    
  • JL 036 SINHND ETD 2200 hrs // ETA 0535 hrs #1    
Tokyo - Singapore
  • JL 035 NRTSIN ETD 0005hrs // ETA 0645 hrs    
  • JL 719 NRTSIN ETD 1040hrs // ETA 1730 hrs    
  • JL 711 NRTSIN ETD 1755hrs // ETA 0035 hrs #1
Tokyo: 4D3N Stay in Shinagawa Prince Hotel – Includes Return Air Ticket by Japan Airlines (Min 2 Pax)
4D3N Stay in Tokyo - Includes Return Air Ticket by Japan Airlines

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Bali Hotel Deals 2014 : Agoda Xtreme up to 75% discounted deals

Bali, The Island of Gods, is one of the most popular destinations in South East Asia. This mystical island offers something for all tastes and budgets. If you are looking for beaches, you will find here. If you are looking for cool mountains and lakes to escape from hot and humid metropolitan areas in South East Asia, you will find them here too (indeed take a look at our where to stay in Bali article to see your options)., the most popular online booking site for Asia and Pacific, now offers xtreme deals campaign which will run for bookings until 28 February 2014. For selected resorts and hotels and for selected periods, you will be able to find up to 65% discount in Bali.

Here are some example offers:

3-Star Manyi Ubud Village only for SGD 54 (66% OFF),
5-Star Sanctuario Luxury Hotel & Villas Sanur Bali only for SGD 284 (69% OFF),
3-Star Ubud Heaven only for SGD 79 (67% OFF),
5-Star Semara Resort & Spa Seminyak only for SGD 89 (75% OFF),
2-Star Melati Guesthouse only for SGD 22 (75% OFF),
4-Star Villa Mandi only for SGD 32 (69% OFF),

and more ... Visit all the hotels and resorts in Bali Agoda Xtreme Deals offer.
Bali Hotel Deals 2014 : Agoda Xtreme up to 75% discounted deals
Agoda Bali Hotel Deals

Friday, February 21, 2014

Where to stay in Batam?

Batam Island of Indonesia is just 20 kilometers to the south of Singapore. The island is known as an industrial hub with large shipyards and oil service sector but it is a popular tourist destination from nearby Singapore and Johor. Main lure of Batam is Batam's night life, a naughty and sleezy one, or this was the case until a few years back. Since casinos are down and steps are taken to reduce sex tourism in Batam, a family oriented tourism is developing.

If you are heading to Batam from nearby Singapore, try to take advantage of many Batam travel deals advertised on coupon sites. Most of these includes ferry plus hotel stay with some extras like shopping tours and dinner coupons.

In this article we will focus on some of the most popular places to stay in Batam instead of individual hotels. Before that let us answer the main question : Bintan or Batam? If you are looking for a hotel stay with cheap shopping, eating and hotels pool will work for you to do swimming head to Batam. If you are looking for a resort with decent beach and all-inclusive, head to Bintan.

Batam Island Map
Nagoya, a.k.a Lubuk Baja, is the main town of Batam and is the city center where you can find most hotels, food or entertainment. The Nagonya town center is closed to Harbour Bay (Jodoh) which is a short drive from the center. Batam's biggest mall Nagoya Hill Shopping Mall is here with Matahari department store. Another popular, probably more popular, mall is Batam City Square (BCS). Many tourist from nearby Singapore comes here to shop for local products and every day items which are significantly cheaper compared to Singapore. Hypermart in Nagoya Hill Mall and Mega Mall are quite popular. The Nagoya Entertainment District here is Batam's most notorious place of sleazy nightlife.

Nongsa Resorts
Nongsa Resorts on the northeastern tip of Batam is the answer to Bintan Lagoi on the neighbouring island of Bintan. The area has some resorts aiming mainly to tourists from Singapore. It is not as good and exclusive as Bintan Lagoi (Bintan Resorts) but some of the best resorts in Batam are here. A ferry ride from Singapore to here takes around 35 minutes.

For resorts in Nongsa Resorts, refer to Batam Nongsa Resort Hotels page.

Montigo Resorts Nongsa
5-Star Montigo Resorts Nongsa is one of the best resort in Batam and near Singapore.
Sekupang city has a brand new harbour front with modern facilities and is accessible from Singapore via direct ferry. Batam is a golfers paradise and he harbour at Sekupang is a popular destination for golfers playing at Indah Puri, Batam Hills and Southlinks.

For hotels and resorts in Sekupang refer to Batam Sekupang Hotels page.

Waterfront City

This place is technically in Sekupang. It's name may have city but this place is a tourist oriented development with 2 hotels and nothing more. This is a popular getaway from Singapore with two large hotels and enough to keep you busy just for a weekend. Indeed since many people come here to do nothing, the place offers a pleasant escape.

There are two places here to stay. Harris Resort Batam offers relatively cheap family holiday with large pool, bowling alley and restaurants. It has a beach but you cannot swim there so just head to somewhere else if you need a beach resort. Holiday Inn Resort Batam is one of Batam's best branded hotel with a large pool and a lot for kids offering a nice family holiday.

Hong Kong Airlines flights to Ho Chi Minh City launched

Hong Kong Airlines (香港航空公司) will fly to Ho Chi Minh City Vietnam from Hong Kong 3 times weekly according to a statement from the company. Hong Kong-based airline will start flights to Ho Chi Minh City on 17 March 2014 and operate Airbus A320 aircraft on the route on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.

Hong Kong Airlines already flies to Hanoi 7 times a week, the capital city of Vietnam. Ho Chi Minh City in the south is the largest city in Vietnam and country's finance, business, culture and trade hub.

"Hong Kong Airlines is delighted to announce the route of Ho Chi Minh City which offers our guests another new gateway to connect between Hong Kong and Vietnam. The new service marks an important milestone of our development in the Vietnamese market, where we operated our first flight to Hanoi in 2010." said Mr. Li Dian Chun, Hong Kong Airlines' Director of Commercial.

Hong Kong Airlines Flights to Ho Chi Minh City from Hong Kong
Flight HX534 departure : 12:20 and arrival at 13:55.

Flights to Hong Kong from Ho Chi Minh City
The return flight, HX535 departure at15:00 and arrival at 18:30.

Hong Kong Airlines Airbus A320 parked at Taichung Airport, Taiwan
A Hong Kong Airlines Airbus A320 seen here Taichung Airport, Taiwan.

Bangkok Airways flights to Chiang Rai from Bangkok

Thai regional airline Bangkok Airways will fly to Chiang Rai from Bangkok (Suvarnabhumi) starting from 28 March 2014. The non-stop flights will be operated on 162-seater Airbus A320 aircraft.

Chiang Rai is the northernmost large city in Thailand. The historic city was founded by King Mangrai in 1262 and became the capital of the Mangrai dynasty. The city is located 860 km north of Bangkok, about 200 kilometres northeast of Chiang Mai City, 62 kilometres south of Mae Sai and the Burmese border; 60 kilometres southwest of the town of Chiang Saen on the Mekong River across from Laos; and 90 kilometres north of Phayao town. The Golden Triangle, the tripoint of the Thailand, Laos and Myanmar borders, is 55 km northeast of the city.

"We see Chiang Rai as another potential, yet competitive market in Thailand. The city has emerged as a popular northern Thailand alternative tourist base to larger Chiang Mai. Chiang Rai is a strategic gateway to neighboring countries such as the Republic of the Union of Myanmar, the Lao People's Democratic Republic as well as the southernmost part of China" said Bangkok Airways' President Mr. Puttipong Prasarttong-Osoth.

Flights to Chiang Rai from Bangkok (Flight PG231)

Departure : 07:35 and Arrival : 08:55.
Departure :18:05 and  Arrival : 19:25.

Flights to Bangkok from Chiang Rai (Flight PG232)

Departure : 09:45 and Arrive Bangkok : 11:05
Departure: 20:10 and arrive Bangkok :21:30.

Siem Reap Air Airbus A320
Siem Reap Air Airbus A320

Angie Vu Ha Asia's Sexiest DJ Video

Angie Vu Ha (born 1 June 1987) is a Model, DJ and Producer. She's best known as Asia's Sexiest DJ and recently featured in the Top 10 Sexiest Supermodel DJs in the world.

Angie Vu Ha calls Hanoi home, but her good looks and talent behind the decks has taken her around the world - from the hottest catwalks to the biggest party destinations. She began modeling at the age of 17 - quickly cinching the title of Supermodel before moving on her other passion: music.

As one of the sexiest women in Asia, this FHM cover girl is making waves behind the decks. Dishing out the hottest, Hip Hop, House, Electro and Dirty Dutch tracks; she prides herself on playing whatever it takes to get the dance floor going.

Also in 2011 Angie stepped into the studio to start her own music production.  Her first release ‘Cookies’ gained instant support from BBC Radio 1’s Judge Jules, Marco V, Lisa Lashes and Michael Woods and is one of the fastest selling tracks on the worlds number 1 legal mp3 download site ‘Beatport’

Her second release 'Cream' features the sounds of UK's vocalist Taya and received massive support from Gareth Emery, Marco V and Ministry of Sound Adam K. Formerly resident DJ at New Asia Bar, one of the world’s finest clubs – Angie now spins internationally even headlining UK’s Escape party in Singapore.

Now having been voted one of the 10 sexiest supermodel DJ's in the world she has over 245 press mentions to her name and is ready to keep on piling up the accolades - both for her music and her moves.[1]

Angie Vu Ha
Here are two sexy videos of her from vimeo.



[1] Angie Vu Ha Facebook page

Singapore Budget 2014 tax increase on alcohol, tobacco and bets

Singapore Budget 2014 is announced by Tharman Shanmugaratnam, deputy prime minister and finance minister. It seems like Singapore Government is trying to balance increased social spending by increasing tax on tobacco and liquor while avoiding a tax hike for the wealthy.

Tobacco taxes will rise by 10 percent, liquor taxes will rise by 25 percent across the board and the betting duty rates will rise to 25-30 percent of gross bets at Singapore Pools, effective immediately.

It seems "fair" for the man on the street to increase tax on "wealthy" and unfair to increase tax on something most people uses like "liquor" or Singapore Pool bets (not everyone drinks but almost everyone bets in Singapore). You can see this sentiment now in the twitter or Facebook where many complain about these increased "sin" taxes.

In reality it is not fair to increase tax on "wealthy" and it is not unfair to increase tax on "liquor" or "tobacco". When was the last time you have invested in a business? If you are the average man on the street, you have probably never done something like that. But if you ask this to a group of wealthy people, you will get some "dates". In a society where there is some rule of law, some wealthy people are those arrogant parasites living on others shoulders but vast majority of wealthy people are entrepreneurs investing in businesses. You tax them more, they will have less money to invest into businesses. This will in turn create less wealth in the future.

On the other hand, tax increases on liquor, tobacco and bets are "great" because these are avoidable taxes. If no one smokes, drinks alcohol or bet in an economy, nothing will happen to that economy. If you do not smoke, drink liquor and bet, nothing will happen to you. Indeed, if you do not smoke and drink a lot, it will be better for you. Only people in these businesses will be effected but since the money will flow to other businesses, they will also eventually find job somewhere.

I believe taxes should be low for everything but if they will increase for something, this should be an unproductive thing like cigarette or alcohol, not productive being like an average wealthy person.

But if no one invests in an economy or people invest less, that economy will not have wealth.

Xiaomi MiPhone 3 (Mi-3) in Singapore on March 7

Xiaomi's flagship smartphone, Xiaomi MiPhone 3,  will be available in Singapore from March 7 for just S$419 (US$332). Xiaomi offers cheap but high quality smartphones which come with highly customizable MIUI software. Xiaomi Mi-3 was released in September 2013 in China and later in Hong Kong and Taiwan. This will be its first release outside Greater China (China, Hong Kong and Taiwan) region.

Xiaomi will open a service center for Singapore customers in The Centreal shopping mall. To commemorate the launch in Singapore, the company has created a software theme (see below) with Singapore-centric app icons and an image of the city's skyline for the wallpaper.

The Mi 3 TD features Nvidia’s quad-core Tegra 4 clocked at 1.8Ghz, along with a 5-inch 1080p display. The Mi 3 WCDMA version, on other hand, features Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 800 CPU.  Nifty ‘premium features’ include things like a 13MP dual flash camera with a Sony Exmor sensor, NFC, dual-band Wi-Fi, and all these components are encased in ‘three layers of graphite.’

Xiaomi Redmi sold out in Singapore in 8 minutes

Xiaomi's Redmi smartphomes are sold out in just 8 minutes in Singapore as it happened in its launches in China, Hong Kong and Taiwan. The company has released unadvertised number of Redmi midrange handsets today at 12:00 pm. "Dear Mi fans, we're sold out for #Redmi - in just 8 minutes!" said the company. "As this is the first time we're selling in Singapore, we wanted to learn more about the market behaviour, sales reaction, and optimise our business processes (e-commerce, logistics, customer support). We understand that many of you are eager to purchase a Redmi still, so we are working hard to bring in more products for you. We'll announce our next round of sales shortly. For those who have successfully placed an order, we are getting your orders fulfilled and you will be getting your #Redmi soon."

Xiaomi's S$169 Redmi offers exceptional value for its low price and provides a cheap Android smartphone without having to compromise on performance. The Xiaomi Singapore Facebook fan page is full of complaints about issues including messages like "order creation error" and those who managed to pay through PayPal but Xiaomi's Web site displaying the order as "unpaid".

Xiaomi is known to release very limited supply to create the illusion of high and crazy demand. According to CNet Asia, there are already Xiaomi Redmi listings on local auction sites.

M1, SingTel and StarHub will be offering the Xiaomi Redmi for sale in Singapore with plans for as low as S$0.

Xiaomi's Redmi smartphomes are sold out in just 8 minutes in Singapore
Xiaomi's Redmi smartphomes are sold out in just 8 minutes in Singapore

Where to stay in Bangkok?

This post is moved to Where to stay in Bangkok.

Where to stay in Hua Hin?

This post is moved here : where to stay in Hua Hin.

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Japan hotel deals by Agoda for sakura (cherry blossom) season

The cherry tree – a.k.a as in scientific vommunity as Prunus serrulata – can be seen throughout Japan in great numbers, that for most of the year sit silently in the background. Come spring, the trees erupt with blossoms in a wave that moves slowly from the southern district of Okinawa to the northern island of Hokkaido, creating lush pink, white, and red canopies in parks and along streets throughout the country. In addition to being extremely beautiful, the blossoms are highly symbolic of life, death, unity, and the pursuit of perfection, all significant elements in Japanese culture.

Predicting the date of the blossom arrival is somewhat of a sport and guessing game in Japan. This  year the Japanese weather service has said the best viewing areas will be in Fukuoka during the last week of March, moving slowly north and finishing up near Iwaki, about 200km north of Tokyo in early April. They can be seen further north than this, but the colder weather makes their appearance less predictable.

When the blossoms arrive, crowds of people gather in favorite spots to take photos, stroll among the colors, and partake in hanami, a centuries-old custom of picnicking in the shade of a tree in full bloom. Photo shoots for weddings are a common sight, and couples dressed in traditional kimonos mingle with suit-and-tie businessmen as they relax after a long day in the office., one of the most popular (if not the most popular) online booking company in Asia,  is offering great hotel deals to celebrate Japan's famed sakura season – known commonly outside of Japan as the cherry blossom season – one of the country's most popular and beautiful annual events.

Hotel New Otani Tokyo, 5-Star
Stay for a minimum of 3 nights in a Garden Standard Twin/Double or Garden Tower Triple and enjoy 15% off. Special lasts throughout the Sakura season.

The Prince Sakura Tower Tokyo Hotel, 4.5-Star
Get the Best Price Guarantee, from USD $213!

Hotel AGORA Osaka Moriguchi, 3.5-Star
Stay for at least 2 nights and save 10%. Expires 31 July, 2014.

Imperial Hotel Osaka, 5-Star
Book at least 40 days in advance for a minimum of 3 nights and enjoy 15% off. Expires 30 June, 2014.

Hotel Hokke Club Kyoto, 3-Star
Stay for a minimum of 2 nights and enjoy 10% off. Must stay between 6 April-31 July, 2014.

Amenity Hotel Kyoto, 2-Star
Book at least 5 days in advance and enjoy 40% off. Special lasts throughout the Sakura season.

Nagoya Ekimae Montblanc Hotel, 3-Star
Book at least 14 days in advance and enjoy 10% off. Must stay between 30 March-27 April, 2014.

Hotel Wing International Nagoya, 3*
Stay for at least 2 nights and enjoy 10% off. Special lasts throughout the Sakura season.

Candeo Hotels The Hakata Terrace, Fukuoka, 4-Star
Book at least 20 days in advance and enjoy 15% off. Special lasts throughout the Sakura season.

Agora Fukuoka Hilltop Hotel, 4-Star
Book at least 30 days in advance and enjoy 30% off. Special lasts throughout the Sakura season.

Japan’s cherry blossom season
Japan’s cherry blossom season (Sakura)

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Where to stay in Koh Samui?

This post is moved to oravar where to stay in Koh Samui?

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

What is Chinese New Year? What Lunar New Year means?

Kids say the cutest stuff! Jetstar Asia asked kids in Singapore to tell what Lunar New Year means, and this is what they had to say.

Chinese New Year is when the new year starts at Chinatown.

We have reunion dinners. I see my cousins, friends and relatives.

I just there at my house. I don't want to go to school.

The year of the penguin lol :)

You may like Red Dela Cruz Facebook fan page

For some reasons completely unknown to me, Facebook is persistant that I may like the Facebook fan page of Red Dela Cruz, a hot 21 something pinay chick from Manila (next to other two recommended pages for me Bruce Lee and Lee Hsien Leong!). I clicked the linked and I really liked what I have seen. I indeed googled her name and liked what I have found there more (i.e. Red Dela Cruz nude and topless photos not safe for work). Note : When I say I liked her Facebook page I did not go and press the Like button to join her Red Army - her fans are called Red Army :)

Red Dela Cruz is born in October 9, 1992 and is a professional freelance model. Judging from her facebook page and awards she has collected (FHM Premiere Ultimate Vixen 2012, Premiere Condoms Brand Ambassador 2012, Premiere Condoms Calendar 2013, Illustrado Dubai Magazine Cover (June 2013), FHM 100 Sexiest Women in the World 2013, Rank 52 and so on ...) she is quite a famous lang mo. Here is from her web site:

Red Dela Cruz as a modern Filipino model is indeed a revolution. Geared with smooth mocha skin, luscious lips, “S” shaped figure, toned abs and a great passion for modelling, Red can showcase a broad range of looks at a drop of a hat. From the classic “Dalagang Pilipina”, to quirky, to sexy, to edgy, to high fashion — Red is definitely a fashion force to be reckoned with; breaking the common local stereotype of beauty and paving way for international success and recognition.

Her shot to fame was a revolution on its own. Rebelling against the usual mainstream path, Red’s following hailed from social media, perhaps being one of only a handful of social media celebrities in the Philippines. Steering clear off the runway as she only stands 5 ft. and 4 in., Red is mainly a print and fitness model.
Source : Red Dela Cruz Web Page

Filipino model Red Dela Cruz
Filipino model Red Dela Cruz is born in 1992.
She is the 52nd sexiest woman in Philippines in 2013. 
Red Dela Cruz fans are called Red Army.
Here's Red Dela Cruz's Summer 2013 Promotional Video.

Where to stay in Pattaya?

This post is moved to where to stay Pattaya article in Oravar blog.

Friday, February 14, 2014

Best Places to Buy Electronics in Singapore has published a short "Best Places to Buy Electronics in Singapore" guide which is, according to Singapore budget hotel site's press release, voted for by a panel of Singaporeans. The nine stores who made it into the guide have each been designated as the best places in the country to buy electrical appliances including video cameras and televisions and gadgets such as smartphones and tablets. Each outlet on the list is a local favorite for everything from PC spare parts to Play Stations, Xboxes to Canon cameras.

Danny Lee, founder of said, “Singapore is well known for its abundance of electronics stores and discounts and deals on appliances and gadgets is almost a national store. Everywhere you turn there are special offers just waiting to be snapped up so navigating the maze and avoiding the tourist traps is key. Our Best Places to Buy Electronics in Singapore guide was created with local help – each outlet is tried and tested by Singaporeans and designated as one of their own top places to shop. With this in mind, we reckon it’s just as essential as sun cream for any visitor planning to splash out on a few new toys while in town!”
For each of the nine recommended ports of call, the guide features tips and insider knowledge so even newcomers to the city island will be shopping like a local within minutes.

The nine recommended places to buy electronics and IT gadgets are Sim Lim Square, Funan DigitaLife IT Mall, Mustafa Center, Harvey Norman, Courts, Parisilk, Challenger, Cathay Photo and Computer Fairs and Expo.

Each listing includes a helpful hint – shoppers checking out the retail chain Harvey Norman for example are advised to keep their eyes peeled for older flat-screen TV models which are often seriously discounted and offer great value for money. Shoppers heading for Sim Lim Square are advised to bypass the first floors and any so called ‘freebies’ which are often included in the price of the package anyway.

Best Places to Buy Electronics in Singapore

In addition to the insider tips and list of hot spots, this electronics buying guide from also includes addresses, websites, opening hours and nearest transport links.

Read 9 Best Places to Buy Electronics in Singapore here.

Cheap Singapore Hotels Guide

Singapore is an expensive place to stay in a hotel but this does not mean that there aren't any relatively cheap hotels in Singapore to book a room. In this blog post, we will provide you a short guide about how to find cheap hotels in Singapore.

General Strategy to find a cheap hotel in Singapore
Singapore is a small island and has a very efficient public transportation system. If you want to save money on hotel stay in hotels outside central Singapore and near MRT Stations. As you go far away from the city center, you will get cheaper prices and tourist attractions in Singapore will still be quite accessible. Outside the central region you will not only save on hotel rooms, you will also save on food and general shopping since food is cheaper outside city center.

If you are looking for hotels in Singapore under USD 100 per night, you can take a look at our post Ten Budget Hotels in Singapore below US$100 per night. For the best hotels below 200 USD per night price range, you can refer to our 10 best hotels in Singapore under $200 article.

Cheapest hotels in Singapore are usually in Geylang area, unofficial Red Light District of Singapore. If you are in Singapore with family or girlfriend, it is usually best to avoid this area. We say usually because there are still some nice and cheap hotels in Geylang. See more here Top Three Budget Hotels in Geylang of Singapore.

Most popular areas in Singapore to find budget hotels and hostels
Singapore's Chinatown and Little India are the most popular areas for finding cheap hotels. Among these two, Chinatown is the more central and offers nice budget hotels in a very central and authentic location. In Chinatown, there are also some luxury hostels such as Wink Hostel, Adler Hostel and Matchbox Concept Hostel.

For hotels and hostels in Chinatown and Little India, you can refer to our Singapore Budget Hotels : Chinatown and Little India post.

Another central location to find a budget hotel or hostel is Boat Quay on Singapore Riverside. For more details about this area, you can refer to Singapore Riverside Hotels - River Mouth to Boat Quay.

Another popular place to find relatively cheap hotel in Singapore is Balestier Road area. Highly authentic, this area is accessible with Novena MRT Station (although you will probably need bus from your hotel to the MRT Station). Value Hotel Thomson here is a very nice budget hotel with something you cannot easily find in a budget hotel in Singapore : swimming pool! This is also one of the nearest budget hotel to Novena MRT Station.

Bugis is another popular area for budget hotels. In fact, according to, Bugis is the most popular accommodation choice for cost-conscious travelers. Bugis is near to Orchard Road, Singapore Central Business District and Suntec City so it is also quite convenient to stay here.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Agoda Xtreme Deals

Agoda is one of the most popular online hotel booking site in Asia. It offers fantastic deals and for these reason I usually see my friends using it to book hotels in Asian destinations such as Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia, Tokyo and China.

Agoda is now offering extreme deals where you can find hotels discounts start at 70% off for those who can book until February 21 2014. These fantastic deals are around the world, not limited to Asia.

Here are some example offers from the page:

82% off for 5-Star Danoya Villa Hotel in Bali Indonesia,
70% off for 5-Star Sea Pearl Villas Resort in Phuket Thailand,
70% off for 5-Star Angkor Miracle Reflection Club in Siem Reap, Cambodia,
82% off for 4-Star Lohas Suites Sukhumvit by Superhotel Japan in Bangkok Thailand,
78% off for 4-Star TRYP Barcelona Apolo Hotel in Barcelona Spain,
75% off for 4-Star Chateraise Gateaux Kingdom Sapporo Hotel & SPA Resort in Sapporo Japan,
and more ...

Visit Agoda Xtreme Deals page for more ...

Agoda Xtreme Deals
Agoda Xtreme Deals

Qatar Airways Flights to Philadelphia and Edinburg starts in April and May 2014

Qatar Airways will start daily non-stop flights to Philadelphia USA by 2 April 2014. Flight time from Doha to Philadelphia will be around 14 hours and 3 minutes. Philadelphia will be airlines 5th destination in USA. Currently Qatar Airways, offers daily non-stop service from New York (JFK), Chicago (ORD), Houston (IAH) and Washington, D.C.

Doha - Philadelphia flights will be operated by Boeing 777 aircraft. Qatar Airways' CEO Akbar al-Baker had previously indicated that Qatar Airways' next U.S. city would be one of three cities: Atlanta, Boston or Detroit. But Philadelphia apparently rose above those destinations thanks to Qatar Airways' recently signed deal to become part of the oneworld frequent-flier alliance.

Through a codeshare agreement with US Airways, Qatar Airways passangers will have connections to PHL through from the following cities: Los Angeles (LAX), San Francisco (SFO), Chicago (ORD), Boston (BOS), Miami (MIA), Tampa (TPA), Fort Lauderdale, Fla.(FLL), Palm Beach, Fla. (PBI), Fort Myers, Fla. (RSW), Las Vegas (LAS), Phoenix (PHX), Charlotte (CLT) and Raleigh-Durham, N.C. (RDU).

Qatar Airways' 5 times a week flights to Edinburgh will start on 28 May 2014.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

I have got car, you have got what?

In the video below, a car driver blocks the road and still mocks the bus driver. "No wonder you are bus driver" he says arrogantly. Here is the script of the argument. The last one is quite stupid lol!

Passanger : "Cannot find a proper job."
Bus Driver : "Bus driver can earn more than you lah."
Passanger : "Please lah. You earn how much?"
Bus Driver : "I have got car, you have got what? Bus lah."

Got money to buy car, but obviously not enough cash to park in a parking lot. According to videos uploader, he was parking illegaly on the roadside.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Scoot to fly first Dreamliner in November 2014

Singapore-based low-cost long-haul airline Scoot will start flying Boeing 787 Dreamliner in November 2014 and CEO Campbell Wilson promises that the cost savings will be passed to customers:

"It's a game changer for us, not only in terms of fuel savings and price savings we can offer, but also the flexibility it gives us to fly to different places," said Campbell in a CNBC interview. "We have seen very clearly that lower airfares stimulate more demand and that fills our aircrafts and help us to earn money. So we will remain price competitive, but we may not pass all of it," he added.

Scoot is currently using Boeing 777 aircraft obtained from its parent company, Singapore Airlines. Scoot is planning to retire all six of its Boeing 777-200ERs by the middle of 2015 and move to an 'all-Boeing 787' fleet, following the delivery of the first of ten Boeing 787-9s in November 2014 and the first of ten Boeing 787-8s in mid-2015.

Scoot currently operates medium and long haul no-frills flights between Singapore and Sydney, Gold Coast, Bangkok, Taipei, Tokyo, Tianjin, Shenyang, Nanjing, Qingdao, Seoul and Hong Kong.

Where to stay in Hong Kong?

Hong Kong is a popular tourist destination where East truly blends with West. With its impressive skyline, fantastic Cantonese cuisine, world class night life and shopping experience, Hong Kong offers something to every taste and budget. Hong Kong draws people from all around to travel, live and work in the city and fully deserves its nickname : Asia’s World City.

Hong Kong has been under British rule for 150 years until 1997. Although it is now a part of China, its political system, economy and social life resembles more West then China.

Although people think an ultra crowded city where futuristic skyscraper littered skyline meets neon sign filled narrow streets when they hear about Hong Kong, most of Hong Kong is rural. The area takes its name from Hong Kong Island which is not the largest part of Hong Kong but is the main interest area for visitors. Central Hong Kong is on the North West part of Hong Kong Island but majority lives on mainland in the northern area.

So, Where to stay in Hong Kong? For most tourists, Hong Kong means the north of Hong Kong Island and the south of Kowloon. Hong Kong Island is the cleanest part of Hong Kong and is also the most expensive. Impressive finance and business center of Hong Kong is here. Most high class shopping, night life and neighborhoods are also here.

Kowloon is one of the most population dense area on the planet. As you travel from south to north (towards New Territories), the city gets dirtier and worn-out. Still, it offers infinite food, shopping and culture shock opportunities as you travel inland.

When choosing accommodation in Hong Kong you need to know several things : Hong Kong is very safe (almost as safe as Singapore and Tokyo). It also has an excellent public transportation network which allows you to arrive any important place in the city easily. And Hong Kong hotels are very expensive. So based on your budget, you can get away from central Hong Kong to save money without sacrificing so much safety and convenience. Choose hotels near major subway stations or bus routes.

Hong Kong map and major districts of Hong Kong. For many visitors, Hong Kong means the north of Hong Kong Island, and the south of Kowloon. You can find almost all Hong Kong tourist attractions in this central places. Map of Hong Kong is from Wikitravel Hong Kong Travel Guide.
Central Hong Kong

Central area is the north west of Hong Kong Island and is the place which comes to mind when you think Hong Kong. This is the main tourist attraction full of skyscrapers and shopping centers. Lan Kwai Fong (蘭桂坊) near Central MRT Station is one of the most popular night life center in Hong Kong. Soho (荷南美食區) is an area between Hollywood Road and Bonham Road-Caine Road and is a very famous entertainment district full of bars, night clubs, shops and art galleries. From here if you go to IFC Shopping Mall, you will see the escalators going uphill. Before Victoria Peak, you will find The Mid-Levels (半山區) and a little below it Sheung Wan (上環) with its colonial era buildings and shops.

Victoria Peak (太平山) is the most upper class area in Hong Kong. The view overlooking central and Victoria Harbour (see below) makes it a must visit place for every tourist to Hong Kong.

Central Hong Kong is the best place to stay in Hong Kong if you can afford it. If you plan to stay here, it saves a lot to check online room prices and find the best deals. For hotels in this area you can check Hong Kong Central Hotels pages.

Hong Kong Skyline from Victoria Peak on Hong Kong Island
Hong Kong Skyline viewed from Victoria Peak on Hong Kong Island. The place full of skyscrapers is Central Hong Kong.
Central Hong Kong is the best place to stay in Hong Kong if you can afford it. If you plan to stay here, it saves a lot to check online room prices and find the best deals. For hotels in this area you can check Hong Kong Central Hotels pages.

Wan Chai

The eastern region of Central area is Admirality. Towards east of Admirality lies Wan Chai, one of the most colorful areas in Hong Kong. Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts, Hong Kong Arts Centre, Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre are here. The area to the west of Lockhart Road is one of the largest bar strips of Hong Kong. Once the area was exclusively Hong Kong’s Red Light District but now offers much extended range of entertainment. But you can still see “working women” from Thailand and Philippines in the area.

The tallest building in Hong Kong, Central Plaza, is also in Wan Chai. There are many shops and restaurants in the area for all budgets and tastes. It is a popular place to stay with its proximity to central Hong Kong. For hotels here visit Hong Kong Wan Chai Hotels pages.

Causeway Bay

Further east, you will find one of the most popular shopping areas in Hong Kong, Causeway Bay. Popular department stores of Seibu and Sogo are here with gigantic Times Square Shopping Mall. The largest green area in Hong Kong, Victoria Park is also here. If you have time and can wake up early, visit the park in very early morning to watch masses doing Tai Chi.

Causeway Bay is quite a popular area to stay in Hong Kong. For hotels and serviced apartments here, visit Hong Kong Causeway Bay Hotels pages.

Tsim Sha Tsui

To the north of Hong Kong Island, you can find Tsim Sha Tsui, the southernmost tip of Kowloon District. This area around Star Ferry Pier is one of the most popular tourist areas in Hong Kong and offers a fantastic view of skyscraper filled Central Hong Kong. Taking a photo here is a must. This area is the best place to watch Christmas light show on skyscrapers. The rooftop bars and restaurants here also offers fantastic Hong Kong view. Walk a little inside and you will find Nathan Road full of electronic, jewellery, clothing and tailor shops.

Tsim Sha Tsui is another central area to stay in Hong Kong. Visit our Hong Kong Tsim Sha Tsui Hotels page for details.

View of Hong Kong Island from Tsim Sha Tsui
View of Hong Kong from Tsim Sha Tsui

Jordan & Mong Kok

If you are more adventurous from a typical tourist, head deep into Kowloon to see how actual Hong Kong residents live. Jordan is a microcosm of working class Hong Kong and offers countless shops, restaurants, hotels and residential buildings with authentic Far East city life. Jordon is also a place where you can find nice and cheap Hong Kong hotels. Fro here, it is still very easy to access Tsim Sha Tsui and Hong Kong Island. This makes Jordon one of the best places to stay in Hong Kong for budget conscious travellers.

Mong Kok has 130,000 people per square kilometer and is a tourist attraction in itself for those eager to experience the most populous area on the planet. Outside tourist regions, Mong Kok offers traditional shops and restaurants. The neon Chinese sign forests of the streets here are must visit.

For hotels in Jordan and Mong Kok, visit Hong Kong Jordon hotels and Mong Kok hotels pages.

Mong Kok, Hong Kong
Mong Kok, Hong Kong

Monday, February 10, 2014

Where to stay in Pulau Ubin?

Situated in the north east of Singapore, Pulau Ubin (Ubin Island) is one of the last rural areas to be found in Singapore, with an abundance of natural flora and fauna. It offers a great weekend getaway from the busy life in Singapore.

Many visitors of Ubin Island leave it with the last boat and leave the island to about a hundred villagers living there. But you can also stay in Pulau Ubin. There is Celestial Resort Pulau Ubin on the island. Located at a 5 minute stroll thru the“Secret Garden”right of the Ubin Jetty, this Pulau Ubin resort offers a holiday house looking over Changi Coast of Singapore's main island.

Celestial Resort Pulau Ubin offers Standard Rooms and Beach Villa stay. Facilities at the Celestial Resort Pulau Ubin include a snack bar and wireless internet. Guests can enjoy a welcome drink on arrival.

pulau ubin resort
Celestial Ubin Beach Resort offers a weekend escape from Singapore without living Singapore.