Posts Tagged ‘Around the World with 365days2play’

HARRIS Hotel Batam Center review – Affordable hotel with a convenient location

[Media Invite]

After our lovely 2N3Ds at HARRIS Waterfront Resort Batam, we were sad to have to leave the resort as we still had so much more we wanted to do! Alas time waits for no man but at least we still had one final night in Batam, albeit at sister property HARRIS Hotel Batam Center. The two properties are quite different. HARRIS Waterfront is a resort where there are lots of activities such that you will not want to leave the property.

HARRIS Hotel Batam Center on the other hand is more no-frills. It is a value-for-money hotel where you plan to be out the whole day touring and enjoying Batam. Therefore, the decor is a little dated, and the toilet amenities offered are basic. However the room is still clean and that splash of orange colour (HARRIS’s corporate colour) is enough to make the room cheery. We managed to snag a room with a great view of the “Welcome to Batam” sign, Alun Alun Batam Centre and Batam Mega Mall. (Promo code available right at the end of the post!)

HARRIS Hotel Batam Centre Swimming Pool

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HARRIS Resort Waterfront Batam–Fun resort hotel with lots to do for the whole family!

HARRIS Resort Waterfront Batam - Family Room

If you have been following me on Instagram, you would have seen me spamming a lot of Batam pictures on Instastories. Yes, I spent a grand total of 4 days in Batam! It was my first time in Batam and it was great. Truth be told, I have been wanting to go to Batam for the longest time. However most people have already been to Batam at least once so it was difficult to find an enthusiastic partner. So I was really happy when I was contacted by HARRIS Hotels to check out two of their properties : HARRIS Resort Waterfront Batam and HARRIS Hotel Batam Center. (Promo code available right at the end of the post!) (Also win a free night’s stay at HARRIS WATERFRONT by entering my contest)

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La Dame de Pic London

During my stay in London back in May, I had the privilege of dining at one of Four Seasons Hotel’s London restaurants. There are two Four Seasons Hotels in London, one being at Park Lane and the other being at Ten Trinity Square. Although I desperately wanted to try more, the choice was whittled down to La Dame de Pic at Four Seasons Hotel London Ten Trinity Square for 2 reasons. One is that La Dame de Pic in London is a Michelin-starred restaurant, having being awarded the star in 2018 & 2019 Michelin Guide. The other reason being that La Dame de Pic would be opening a restaurant in Singapore so it would be a great opportunity to compare both restaurants, or to simply visit just to reminisce my holiday in London.

La Dame de Pic London offers distinctive French cooking from the acclaimed Anne-Sophie Pic. She is the only current French female chef to hold 3 Michelin stars. Anne-Sophie had not originally contemplated being a chef and was never formally trained. However she was born into a family of chefs. Her family’s restaurant Maison de Pic in Valence originally won 3 Michelin stars under her grandfather Andre in 1934, and then later her father. The restaurant lost its 3rd star in 1995 after the sudden death of her father, however Anne-Sophie managed to regain the stars on her own in 2007.

La Dame de Pic - Beetroot Flower Amuse Bouche

Beetroot Flower Amuse Bouche

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Royal China London – Dim Sum just like in Singapore!

Finally starting on my UK posts. If you didn’t already know, I’ve just returned from my epic trip to the UK. Epic not just because of the duration and places covered (more on that in subsequent posts), but also the fact that I travelled together with my parents and the toddler, without my husband! The last time I did a road trip together with my parents was a decade ago! We were all fearing that we might throttle each other’s throats by the end of the trip, now that we are older and fussier. The husband did actually join us for half the trip, but he had to return to Singapore first.

Anyway, more on the epic trip itself later. For this post, I wanted to talk about our lovely dim sum lunch at Royal China Baker Street, on our first day in London. If Royal China sounds familiar to you, that’s because there used to be a Royal China at the world famous Raffles Hotel in Singapore. It closed a year or so ago to facilitate the refurbishment of the entire Raffles Hotel. It doesn’t seem to be in the line-up of restaurants opening at the soon to be opened Raffles Hotel, which is a real pity because Royal China was one of my favourite places to go for dim sum.

So I was really happy to have the opportunity to check out Royal China in London. There are actually several branches, each with a slightly different menu. We chose to visit the flagship one at Baker Street because of the extensive dim sum menu, although we would also have loved to check out the Canary Wharf branch with supposedly one of the best views for a Chinese restaurant in London.

Royal China Baker Street Dim Sum

Photo Credit : Royal China Group Instagram

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Kedai Bak Kut Teh Hin Hock 兴福肉骨茶 [Johor Bahru]

Last year, I visited Johor Bahru for the first time in many years. It was a trip unlike any other because my friend brought us around like a local. We got to check out a popular bah kut teh eatery, 2 Instagrammable cafes and even had time for a cheap massage by Singapore’s standards! You can read more about my day trip to Johor Bahru via public transport here. But for this post, I thought I should write more about Kedai Bak Kut Teh Hin Hock, which is worth trying if you ever visit JB.

The interesting thing about this place despite their name is that they are also very famous for their steamed fish. In fact, the Grab Driver who drove us, knew about the steamed fish but not the Bah Kut Teh. Another interesting point is that most of their dishes are steamed or boiled, eg the veggies.

Here’s a video of lunch hour on a weekday at Kedai Bak Kut Teh Hin Hock. Check out that enormous package of herbs that was dunked into the BKT broth.

Kedai Bak Kut Teh Hin Hock

We left the ordering entirely to my friend and so this is what we had for lunch that day. As is quite common in most Bah Kut Teh outlets in Johor Bahru, the Bah Kut Teh tends to be quite heavy on the herbal flavour, as opposed to the more peppery kind that you might be more familiar with.  The Bah Kut Teh tastes good, especially when you first try it because of the intense flavours. But I must admit it does get slightly overwhelming after a while, especially if you are trying to drink the soup.

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