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10 Reasons To Visit Vogue Lounge, Kuala Lumpur

When Vogue Lounge opened its doors in Kuala Lumpur back in September 2019, it was the talk of the town for months. Celebrities, socialites, fashionistas and curious members of the public flocked to the establishment, where they were treated to a chic dining experience embodying the luxurious lifestyle synonymous with fashion bible Vogue.

Vogue Lounge

2020 has been a year filled with unprecedented challenges, and after a brief hiatus, Vogue Lounge Kuala Lumpur is once again ready to welcome guests with exceptional cuisine and an extensive drinks list served in an elegant ambience. A visit will make for the perfect year-end treat: so here are 10 reasons why you should.

It’s THE place to be seen

Vogue Lounge KL

More than just your average restaurant, Vogue Lounge embodies the Vogue lifestyle, which means high end couture, style and sophistication. As the first of its kind in Southeast Asia, Vogue Lounge KL joins a list of branded properties worldwide, including Vogue Cafes in Moscow, Porto, Kiev, Riyadh and Beijing, Vogue Restaurant in Istanbul and GQ Bar in Berlin – reflecting Kuala Lumpur’s status as a cosmopolitan city with a sophisticated crowd. It was the official lounge for Kuala Lumpur Fashion Week Digital 2020 from 11 to 13 November 2020.

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It Offers A Fresh, New Dining Experience

A4 Japanese Wagyu
A4 Japanese wagyu

The newly conceptualised menu is a reflection of Eurasian and Asian-Med fusion fine dining with Japanese and French influence. Some of the signature dishes which are must-tries include Hokkaido Sea Urchin (Carrot Puree, Dashi Jelly, Seaweed Melba, Mentaiko Cream); A4 Japanese Wagyu (Broiled Ribeye, White Onions, Baby Leek, Porcini Powder, Black Garlic Jus) and Souffle (Ginger Souffle, White Chocolate, Coconut, Lime Zest).

Hokkaido Sea Urchin
Hokkaido Sea Urchin

The Drinks Are Impressive

Those looking for a tipple will find that Vogue Lounge offers an extensive array. Kick off the evening with VOGUE Signature Cocktails such as Tokyo Fizz (Whiskey, Umeshu, Earl Grey Syrup), or Dark Moon (Vodka, Espresso, DOM Benedictine). For a good white wine, there’s Jean-March Brocard Chabilis Grand Cru ‘Les Clos’ 2016 – a complex Chardonnay with a soft mouthfeel, well-integrated acidity and a long finish.

Tokyo Fizz
Tokyo Fizz

Red wine lovers will appreciate Red Granja Remelluri Gran Reserva 2009 Rioja Biodynamic. This Rioja Red Blend consists of a complex layers of dried red fruit, prunes, coffee, cedar, herbs on the nose. The palate is, even more giving with pronounced flavours and wonderfully balanced structure, and a long finish. Bubbly enthusiasts are not left out: order a Collard Picard Cuvée Dom Picard Grand Cru Blanc de Blanc NV for a light and fresh nose with lemon, apricot, white peach, faint floral and honey notes.

They Have An Outstanding Head Chef

Chef Steve Arifin

New Zealand-born, Australian-raised Head Chef Steve Arifin is responsible for the creation of the eclectic yet classy brand new menu. Highly experienced in Euro-Asian cuisine, he gained his qualifications from the Canberra Institute of Technlogy in Culinary Art, and has extensive work experience in several prestigious fine dining restaurants in Southeast Asia and Europe.

There’s An In-House Wine Expert

Nikola Maksic

Not sure about which wine to taste? Vogue Lounge KL has Nikola Maksic, who hails from Serbia and holds a Master’s degree in Hospitality from the University of Novi Sad. A certified Wine Sommelier Level 3 and mixologist, he honed his experience while working in Europe and on cruise ships.

It’s Private and Exclusive

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Sprawled over 18,500 square feet on the 38th floor and rooftop of Menara Suezcap, you’ll be hardpressed to find a posher place than this. The lounge area is perfect for intimate conversations, but for more privacy and comfort, there’s also the V Room which can cater up to 16 guests. For an unparalleled, exclusive dining experience, arrange for the preparation of an ad hoc degustation menu.

It’s Made For Instagram

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You’ll never run out of Instagram-able moments here: every corner has been thoughtfully designed to exude a distinctive style. From the VOGUE magazine covers neatly framed against the wall to the lofty, high floor-to-ceiling glass windows, LED platform cum runway and ultra-chic powder rooms, the decor is befitting of the establishment’s Vogue label.

The View Is Unbeatable

Rooftop Bar

Want to feel on top of the world? Vogue KL has some of the best views. Come during sunset hour for gorgeous sights of the Kuala Lumpur and Petaling Jaya skyline from the rooftop, as you sip on signature cocktails against the artistic backdrop of murals by multidisciplinary artist Thomas Powell.

It’s the Ideal Place For Special Occasions

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Any celebration or event – be it a first date, a romantic rendezvous, wedding anniversary or birthday – will feel extra special at The Vogue Lounge, not only because of the classy ambience and impeccable food, but also the highly personalized service and meticulous attention to detail.

Safety First

The establishment adheres strictly to safety protocols and recommended standard operating procedures to ensure that guests can dine in and enjoy the experience at ease. Social distancing measures, temperature checks and limited capacity dining will also ensure that the dining experience is safe, comfortable and undisturbed.

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The Vogue Lounge is located at Level 38, Menara SuezCap 1, KL Gateway, Jalan Kerinchi, Bangsar South,59200 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Opening hours are from Mondays to Saturdays, 5pm to 12am (last order for restaurant at 9:30pm and bar food at 11pm). Closed on Sundays.

For reservations, WhatsApp +60168466552; call +60327711530/1531; or emailreservations@voguelounge.my.

voguelounge.my

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KLoe Hotel – Kuala Lumpur’s Latest Boutique Hotel For Creative Nomads and Travellers

Earlier in February, I had the privilege of attending the launch of  KLoe – Kuala Lumpur’s latest boutique hotel. Located just a stone’s throw away from the city’s Golden Triangle area, the 85-room hotel is designed as a celebration of artistic pursuit – and it shows through the painstakingly curated art pieces, creative decor, and warm and friendly service. The name is a playful portmanteau coined after the capital city’s colloquial initials and the Greek word  for ‘tender, young shoot’.

Kloe Hotel

In a saturated industry that often involves the same old offerings, KLoé’s bold architecture and interior design is a breath of fresh air. Being a homegrown brand, the team has also worked to ensure that they collaborate with local brands and artisans to come up with a hotel that reflects Malaysian contemporary art and design.

Unfortunately, the timing was horrible, as not long after its opening, the movement control order came into place. As an independent hotel group without the backing of a major international hospitality chain, I can imagine that it’s going to be tough for the team at KLoé. Having visited the place first hand, I can tell how much effort and love went into creating a thoughtful and beautiful space for guests to unwind.

Since there is a call to #supportlocalbrands after the quarantine is lifted, here are six reasons why you should check in for a stay at KLoé after the MCO:

Rooms are designed to be comfortable, and to inspire

Kloe Hotel

KLoé’s spaces are designed not just for how they look, but how they feel to guests. Rooms are awash in cool, calm tones of duck-egg blue and sage to put its inhabitant’s mind at ease. Copper-trimmed open storage and vanity counters, coupled with bespoke mid-century furnishings give the rooms a modern, understated feel.  Lending credence to the saying that luxury is in the touch, real oak floors and hand-poured terrazzo tables are featured in all rooms. Savvy globetrotters will find all their necessities covered – from apps to mirror your devices and in-house designed city guides, to artisanal snacks and amenities by cult Australian skin and bodycare brand Aesop.

A celebration of local artistry

KLoé has worked with a local curator to furnish every guest room with original pieces of art, and commissioned artisans to create the hotel’s ​objets d’art ​, from  hand-thrown ceramic lampshades to handcrafted desks that fit snugly in each room.The hotel’s lobby, given the warmer moniker ​The Living Room ​, is a light-filled space housed under a  greenhouse roof. Curl up with a good book from the floor-to-ceiling  bookshelf, browse through the rotating showcase of artisanal crafts or share a 10-foot communal table with a fellow traveller or a co-working city native. Among the locally crafted art and furniture brands and artisans are Lisette Inc, Bendang Studio, thirty3eleven, Stephanie NG Design, Metisse Maison, Aureole Design and Wynk Collaborative.

Made by creatives, for creatives 

Kloe Hotel

The highlight at KLoé is its five one-of-a-kind Lofts, each outfitted to celebrate a particular creative pursuit, whether its art, music, food, plants, or books. To achieve this, KLoé teamed up with five different personalities, all of whom are well-respected thought leaders in their respective fields, to design the lofts’ guest experience.

Kloe Hotel

In ​Room to Listen​, guests will find a vinyl collection curated to suit an array of musical tastes. The mid-century modern room features a built-in sound system centred by a vinyl turntable, and lounge furniture for you to sink into. The room is curated by Rudy La Faber, a creative director in advertising, DJ and owner of left-field music venue Fono, as well as founder of music collective Public School.

Kloe Hotel

Kloe Hotel

(Above) Room to Draw; Joee Cheong 

Unleash your inner artist in ​Room to  Draw, curated by artist and creative entrepreneur Joee Cheong. The room is built as a cosy work studio equipped with brushes, watercolour and acrylic paint, canvas and sketchbooks. If the love of nature fuels your soul, check in to the ​Room To Grow, a verdant conservatory-like loft, curated by and featuring terrariums by Ohsum Mossum founder Ronnie Khoo.

Kloe Hotel

Kloe Hotel

(Above) Room to Grow; Ohsum Mossum founder Ronnie Khoo

Kloe Hotel

You may have seen Singapore-based celebrity chef, food writer and host Sarah Huang Benjamin on TV – she’s also the curator behind Room to Taste.  While you won’t be able to cook per se, the room celebrates all things gourmet and epicurean, with a communal dining table, a collection of cookbooks, and a personal pantry of artisanal produce plus a bespoke kitchen counter with ingredients to prepare your own snacks and drinks.

Kloe Hotel

Last but not least, my favourite is the Room to Read, curated by Nazir Harith Fadzilah, founder of independent bookshop and event space Tintabudi. Inspired by the modern charm of independent bookstores, the room features floor to ceiling shelves of books dedicated to art, culture, philosophy, poetry and literature. The armchair in the room is good enough to sleep in!

Delicious food 

Kloe Hotel

In a country where food is central to the cultural experience, KLoé hopes to distinguish itself as a  destination for dining and conviviality. ​Lucky Coffee , owned and operated by KLoé and sister to the neighbourhood cafe LOKL Coffee Company in KL, offers sandwiches, ready meals, nitro drinks, and other specialty coffee beverages in ​The Living Room. ​

Kloe Hotel

Monroe

Kloe Hotel

Meanwhile Monroe, a breezy California-styled bistro, serves comfort food based around  family and community. To further elevate its dining experience, KLoé is partnering with Empire Eats Group from Singapore to bring its award-winning tasting room and cocktail bar The Secret Mermaid to KLoé, where it will offer the largest selection of American spirits in Kuala Lumpur.

Health and Wellness 

Kloe Hotel

KLoé houses ​B.est Mind & Body ​that will offer a holistic approach to fitness and mindfulness  through a range of yoga, meditation, and fitness sessions.​ ​Alternatively, take a refreshing plunge into the adjacent pool, or have lounge in one of the many comfy and Instagrammable poolside cabanas.

Kloe Hotel

Malaysian Hospitality

As an independent hotel, KLoé’s team of hosts are empowered to better their guests’ stay  in personal ways and are always willing to provide an insider’s guide to the city.  Ng Ping Ho, Managing Director of Kindness of Strangers, the group that owns KLoé Hotel said:  “At KLoé we hope to provide what we believe true luxury really is: a haven where you are shown kindness; where time moves slowly, so you can linger, reflect, connect, and be inspired to explore  your creativity through art, design, music and food.”

Kloe Hotel

Rooms start at RM400++ per night. Book and stay until May 31, 2020 to enjoy 30% off published rates.

KLoe Hotel 

227 Jalan Bukit Bintang, 55100 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Reservations: +603-2772-1313 (24 hours)

kloehotel.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

LUSH’s New Bubble Bar Collection Is Perfect for DIY Home Pampering

I love bubble baths. Although I don’t get to enjoy them very often since we don’t have a bathtub at home, they’re always something I look forward to whenever I get to stay in a nice hotel.

For those of you who do have bathtubs in your home (lucky you!), LUSH recently released their biggest bubble bar collection to date, featuring 24 new bubble bars that were previously only available at the Lush Labs shop in Harajuku, Tokyo. You can now order them online or for Malaysians, buy them at the LUSH stores at Pavilion KL and Sunway Pyramid (after the quarantine has been lifted, of course!)

I’ve always loved LUSH for its innovative offerings and colourful creations, and the bubble bars are no exception. Just take a look at these amazing bars (some of which are too pretty to even think of crumbling up):

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A French Kiss – This one’s for the lavender lovers. Soak into the bath with this just before bedtime and let the soothing herbal scent lull you to dreamland.

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Abracadabra – Cast a magic spell and wave away bad vibes with spicy scents of olibanum and bergamot.

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Akaname –  This bubble bar is inspired by an urban legend of the akaname, a Japanese bathroom spirit with a long tongue that is said to lick up the filth in public bathrooms and toilets (trust Japan to have the most peculiar tales…). Fret not though; this akaname slurps around the bath to leave it squeaky clean and smelling fresh and lemony.

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Big Bottle of Calm – I definitely need this in my life, lol. Sink into bubbly purple waters and drift away to the beautiful lavender fields of France, while a chamomile tide washes your worries away. Run this into the bath with running water, let dry and set aside for another use.

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Relax… Take A Bath – Hunched over a computer all day? Take a dip in this relaxing teal-coloured muscle soak and dissipate the tension in your very own hot spring of lavender oil and Sicilian lemon oil.

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Peach Crumble – This cheeky pink bath-roon releases juicy grapefruit, fresh peach juice and sweet Davana to gently cleanse and refresh. Swoon over blueh coloured bubbles and an elevating fragrance – the perfect sweet treat after a long day.

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Nana – Climb into a softening bath of sunshine yellow, banana and creme brulee scented foam, for a dessert-inspired bath that smells good enough to eat.

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Milky Bar – Despite the name, the milky bar is actually dairy-free, featuring oat milk, sweet orange oil fragrance and a hint of patchouli.

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Mermaid Tail – Splash into a tub full of bubbles with this adorable bar, which combines silky-smooth bath oil and zesty, fruity scents.

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Lucky Cat – Cats are a symbol of good fortune in Japan, and this fuschia feline brings a plastic-free shimmer to your water along with a flurry of bubbles and a fresh, floral scent.

keeping_it_fluffy_Perfume_Bubble_Bottle_hero_2019-2

Keep It Fluffy – The Doris Day of bubble baths. Lie back and dream of old school glamour. Powdery vanilla and uplifting lemongrass pair perfectly to create perfect pink bubbles.

Goldfinger_Bubble_Stick_hero_2019

Goldfinger –  Luxuriate in dazzling gold plastic-free glitter and a heady mix of juicy Brazilian orange oil, bergamot, and delectable honey-scented waters. You don’t need a license to bathe for this one.

golden_pear_bubble_bar_hero_2019

Golden Pear – A fruit-shaped bubble bar to lift the spirits, smoothe and soften skin. Its pear-drop scent is reminiscent of spiced cakes and pastries.

Figs_In_Honey_bubble_bar_hero_2019

Figs in Honey – Another fruity number ripe for the picking. Benzoin resinoid offers a rich, balsamic sweetness, while myrrh offers a spiced undertone. A deeply moisturising cocoa-butter centre melts with the water, filling your bath with a dessert-like creaminess.

Dirty_Bubble_Bottle_hero_2019

Dirty – On the contrary, this bubble bottle provides a refreshing pink bath of spearmint and warming sandalwood, leaving you feeling refreshed and renewed.

Crayon_Bubble_Stick_hero_2019

Crayon – Write your own bathtime story with uplifting grapefruit and bergamot waters, surrounded by blackcurrant-mint foam.

Order online at lush.my.

 

*photos courtesy of Lush Malaysia. 

 

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Hotel Review: Citizen M Kuala Lumpur

Hey guys! Sorry for the lack of updates – I had my wedding ceremony over the weekend and it was crazy. Now that it’s back to regular programming, I’m procrastinating by blogging instead of doing actual work, lol.

N and I recently checked into Citizen M Kuala Lumpur, a stylish boutique hotel in the heart of the city. This is the Dutch brand’s first hotel in Southeast Asia, so we KL-ites are pretty blessed! All Citizen M hotels share the same thing in common, namely location + comfort at an affordable price.

VIDEO REVIEW AND MY NASALLY VOICE: 

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We start off with the self-check in process, which is done at computer terminals at the foyer. The process is seamless, convenient and totally automated. All you have to do is key in your details, pay by card or app, and get your room cards.  For the non tech-savvy, fret not as there are actual humans on hand to assist.

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Doing away with the conventional rigidities of five-star luxury hotels, the hotel is quirky and fun, with cool inspiring spaces that are designed to appeal to a younger crowd. The lounge area boasts a modern and contemporary look, its open spaces blending into each other seamlessly. Every nook and corner seems to be occupied by some amazing art piece/installation or other, so Instagrammers will have a field day.

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What I imagine my home to be like. It actually reminds me a lot of the Lyon Housemuseum in Melbourne!

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Our room is small but cleverly designed and furnished to make it look more spacious – almost like a studio apartment. The platform bed is flush against the window, with blinds for privacy and to shield against the sun. Both the bed and the pillows are extremely comfy – not too soft (which tends to give me back aches) nor too rigid. Of course, the view of the street is awesome – I feel like I’m in New York, surrounded by towering skyscrapers!

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Room amenities include a safe under the bed, a mini fridge, and these cheeky toiletries. Since the hotel is pretty tech-driven, you get a tablet that acts as a command centre for everything in the room, including the blinds, lighting, temperature as well as media such as TV and radio. There is also a ‘mood pad’ which allows you to select different ‘moods’, such as one which darkens the room and plays relaxing sleep music, and another that helps you to focus if you need to work. You can even adjust the lighting in the bathroom to suit different moods.

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Breakfast is served at the lounge/foyer. They don’t have a restaurant per se, so you can basically sit wherever you want.

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The selection is not fantastic, but what they do have is pretty tasty. For our meal, we had cold cuts of ham and cheese, bread, pastries, dimsum, chicken sausages and cereal with milk and fruit juice. They also serve salad, nasi lemak and porridge.

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The bar island where you can grab a couple of drinks after dark is the most striking fixture of the lobby, thanks to the chess-like black and white tile flooring and red bottles at the top.

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Bold, quirky and colourful best describe Citizen M Kuala Lumpur’s eclectic design. There is literally not a single corner that isn’t Instagrammable! In a way, it is also like an art gallery – N and I had a lot of fun looking and admiring each of the pieces, including:

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Portraits of famous artists and designers such as Yayoi Kusama and Frida Kahlo made from folded paper art 

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Hand sculptures depicting different gestures. I interpret them as a ‘story’ whereby everything starts off with A-OKs and likes, before ending in a handshake. Once the deal is sealed, the last hand flips the bird (I find it hilarious that they used an actual figure of a bird as part of the installation lolol)

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You also get some sexually suggestive installations…

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…along with something more blatant lol. Well, it IS a Dutch brand…

I am curious as to how a cock ring with a buzzer works. Aren’t you?

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A whole collection of popular fiction and rare titles for the bookworms

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The Mezzanine floor above the lounge is equally quirky and stylish. The meeting rooms are located on this floor, as well as workstations. The feeling is like that of one of those hipster co-working spaces in the Sillicon Valley, complete with sofas and stuff.

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That being said, there are some cons to Citizen M KL. If you’re looking for the full experience of a traditional five star hotel then look elsewhere – the hotel does not have facilities such as a gym or pool. Parking is another con: if you’re driving, the only place you can park is on the street (if you’re lucky) or at the open-air carpark next to the hotel, which charges RM12 per entry (additional RM7 if you’re staying overnight.) There isn’t much security since it’s an open-air space.

If you’re from out of town and not driving, Citizen M has an excellent location. It’s steps away from KL’s famous food street, Jalan Alor, and the glitzy shopping district of Bukit Bintang is just a couple of minutes away. There’s also a 7-11 downstairs if you need to grab some Indomie to satisfy your late night noodle cravings.

Rooms start from RM220++ per night.

CITIZEN M KUALA LUMPUR

128, Jalan Pudu, Bukit Bintang, 55100 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Bookings: Website

 

Rosewood Yangon Opens as a Centre of Culture and Style in Myanmar

Since the country’s military rule ended in 2011, Myanmar has seen an unprecedented boom in tourism. Places like Yangon, Bagan and Mandalay are now popular tourist hotspots, and businesses – whether high-end restaurants or luxury hotels – are following suit.

The latest addition to the landscape is Rosewood Yangon, which opened its doors recently in the bustling city of Yangon. Showcasing a fusion of contemporary Burmese style and old-world grandeur, it is housed in one of the grandest and most expansive buildings from the colonial era: the former New Law Courts that were built in 1927. The hotel’s location in the heart of the historic district by the banks of the Irrawaddy River make it the perfect base for traveller’s looking to explore the heritage side of things that the city has to offer.

Rosewood Yangon - Building Exterior Bank Street

Guests arrive at the hotel’s majestic portico, lit by three immense 1920s chandeliers, before stepping through two sets of grand iron-framed doors into the lobby. Above the reception desk, a stunning mural by famed local artist Than Kyaw Htay immediately evokes the charm of Myanmar with sunset-bathed pagodas atop peaks floating over a rugged landscape. Every step throughout the hotel showcases the hotel’s transformation – one that preserves the architectural past while offering the ultimate in contemporary comfort.

A wide range of facilities available under one roof includes five distinctive dining venues; recreational options including a spa, a rooftop infinity pool and a fitness studio; extensive meeting facilities featuring a grand ballroom, bridal suite, event studio, Heritage Salon and three meeting rooms; and a sophisticated retail gallery and barber shop.

Unparalleled Stays

Rosewood Yangon - Rosewood Suite_03

The hotel’s 205 stylishly designed rooms and suites are carefully crafted to highlight the architectural beauty of the building. Along with high ceilings and abundant natural light, most guest rooms feature patios and balconies with view overlooking the city or beautifully landscaped internal courtyards.

The refined Executive Rooms, starting at 45 square meters, are thoughtfully conceived to create comfortable, residential-style living spaces that are equally suited to business and leisure stays. The property’s suite collection boasts the 90-square-meter Rosewood Suite, which includes a separate enclosed bedroom and a spacious terrace that is ideal for afternoon tea or in-room dining experiences.

Rosewood Yangon - Rosewood Suite_01

The Suites have been tastefully decorated using a combination of the old world and the new. Dazzling lacquerware and papier-mâché objets d’art from upcountry Bagan, along with handwoven bed-throws and cushions created by artisans from non-profit Turquoise Mountain, evoke a sense of place. Paintings by Nyein Chan Su lend a contemporary ambience to the elegant guest suites with his bold use of color in semi-abstract compositions. Meanwhile, Pyayt Phyo Aung’s stylized portraits of young Myanmar women wearing traditional thanaka paste on their faces, displayed at guestroom entryways, create a warm and welcoming touch.

High-Concept Dining and Entertainment Experiences

Each of Rosewood Yangon’s five dining venues possesses a distinctive character, with an accent on local producers and seasonality.

Vibrant and fast-paced NOVA European Brasserie features an open kitchen and a huge skylight for natural daylight dining. Seasonal vegetables and herbs are sourced directly from farms in the Shan State of northern Myanmar and fresh seafood comes from the Andaman Sea: at least 70 percent of all ingredients are the bounty from Myanmar’s land and waters.

NOVA Brasserie - Crudo Dessert Bar

The menu boasts European dishes such as Salmon Pastrami and Roasted Porchetta, along with contemporary Burmese fare. A well-balanced wine list with an excellent mix of international labels complements the menu. Conveniently located near the entrance of the restaurant, a crudo bar serves the freshest oysters, seafood and more.

Destined to become a popular Yangon gathering place, Living Room & Patisserie is the perfect venue for a cup of local artisan coffee or premium quality tea paired with chocolates and homemade French desserts, while at CourtRoom Bar, an impressive heritage décor featuring restored dark teak wall paneling creates a luxurious, intimate experience. Here the city’s best whiskey selection takes centre stage, along with bespoke cocktails, a curated selection of fine wines and sophisticated bite-size snacks. The Judge’s Chamber, a separate lounge in CourtRoom Bar, offers a world-class variety of premium cigars amidst faithfully restored wood parquet in a space where the New Law Courts’ judges once deliberated. A large-scale portrait of a cheroot-smoking Pa-O grandmother, painted with acrylic on canvas by Zay Zay Htut, presides over the lounge.

When it opens later this year, the rooftop Y Bar will be the jewel in the crown of the heritage building. The only luxury bar in the city offering a panoramic view over Yangon River, it will undoubtedly become a prestigious evening gathering place for Yangonites, expatriates and international guests – with a live DJ at night and a selection of cocktails inspired by Yangon’s eclectic streets.A Chinese restaurant is also set to open late 2020.

Rich Cultural Experience

To showcase the richness and dynamism of Myanmar culture, Rosewood Yangon has created a suite of bespoke experiences to provide guests with an insider perspective including its “Rosewood Limited Edition” package, available from April 2020.

It consists of a one-of-a-kind arts and history experience in which visitors both preserve and help make history at this turning point of Myanmar opening up to the world. Guests have the exciting opportunity to discuss the Yangon’s preservation efforts with Dr. Thant Myint-U, Myanmar’s leading historian and writer, and founder of the Yangon Heritage Trust, in a rare private audience.

Guests also get a hands-on experience with Delphine de Lorme, artist and co-founder of Yangon Walls, and see how the city’s burgeoning creative community is responding to its modernisation. Together with de Lorne, guests will get the opportunity to rejuvenate Yangon’s back alleys with colourful murals. These and more rich experiences, plus three nights accommodation, are also included.

Relaxation & Recreation

The Fitness Studio offers a complete line of state-of-the-art fitness equipment, available 24 hours a day.  The resident fitness trainer is available for assistance on request. An infinity swimming pool is also located at the rooftop level.

Additional facilities will be opening later this year, including a sophisticated retail gallery offering gifts and collectible souvenir items inspired by the hotel’s rich heritage and the local Burmese culture, while a classic barber shop will offer a premium grooming experience.

When it opens in late 2020, Sense, A Rosewood Spa, Rosewood’s award-wining, signature spa brand, will offer guests a sanctuary of simplicity and purity. Time-honoured Burmese practices will be perceptively customised to guests’ needs, and paired with natural ingredients that are sustainable, carefully cultivated and thoughtfully sourced.

Rosewood Yangon - NOVA Living Room

For Special Occasions

Rosewood Yangon boasts prestigious event spaces, including the Grand Ballroom, the Heritage Salon and the Terrace Suite for hosting exclusive private celebrations. The hotel’s majestic and capacious Grand Ballroom offers one of the most distinguished and elegant event venues in Yangon with its lofty, coffered ceilings and custom-designed crystal chandeliers. A movable partition allows the 1,400-sq.m. ballroom to be divided into two spaces. Meanwhile the Heritage Salon, formerly Parliament’s Chamber of Nationalities (1948-1962), has been meticulously restored and modernized to become, in late 2020, one of the city’s most impressive and unique venues with its double-height ceiling and decorative frieze, renovated to all its past glory.

Introductory offers are available from now until 30 June 2020 and include personal butler services throughout the stay, roundtrip airport transfers and breakfast at NOVA European Brasserie. “Heritage Discovery” with rates starting from USD320, and “Enchanting Yangon” from USD350 for a minimum two-night stay, include selections of hotel signature experiences.

Lush’s Cheeky Valentine’s Day Series Includes Peach and Aubergine Soaps / Naked Shower Gels

‘Tis the season for love !

Even if you find Valentine’s Day overrated, there’s no harm in indulging in something nice for the occasion, whether it’s for yourself or as a gift for a s/o / loved one (hintcough*hint). Skip the flowers and chocolates, and go for these lovely bath time treats from Lush. If nothing else, they’re fun and pretty cheeky!

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Love Boat bath bomb

Set sail with the Love Boat, which promises something for everyone with the tangy sherbet scent of orange and Sicilian lemon. The bath bomb releases waves of vibrant colour and swathes of glittering hearts, taking you down the river on a scent-sational cruise.

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Peachy bath bomb

A slow-fizzling cheeky number that releases bursts of juicy grapefruit and sweet davana. Swoon over pink swirls of colour as you relax in the water: the perfect sweet treat after a fruity session.

Aubergine bath bomb

This steamy bath bomb emits scents of uplifting bergamot and fruity ho wood. Created with tongues planted firmly in cheeks, Aubergine will shoot green and blue foam from both ends. Give someone the gift of a fast fizzing tip filled with tonka and litsea.

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Unicorn Horn bubble bar

The rare Unicorn Horn bubble bar will make you believe in magic again with its enchanted pink waters, infused with relaxing lavender and sparkling with lustre – just like the magical lakes on the Isle of Lushland where unicorns bathe.

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Prince Charming shower gel

Once upon a time, a soapy saviour emerged to enchant the shower routine. This smooth operator packs a punch, but still manages to charm with a soft marshmallow root and vanilla pod decoction smile.

Prince Charming naked shower gel

What’s better than Prince Charming? Prince Charming, but naked. Take a peek beneath the coat of shining armour to discover sweet and juicy suds of fresh pomegranate and rich vanilla. A happy ever after is guaranteed with this nude noble.

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Love Locket amaze ball bath bomb

Unlock your heart’s true potential and release it in a spectacle of strawberry-scented swirls. Full to the brim with tiny bath bomb hearts, feel all aflutter in the bath, thanks to uplifting orange and cosy tonka.

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Aubergine soap

Bulging with fruity bergamot, zingy litsea cubeba and sweet tonka, this scent has stamina, lasting on the skin long into the night. For suds worthy of a swipe right, take a firm grip and lather up.

Peachy soap

Ripe and plump, this is soap you can get behind. Brand spanking new and dripping in peach, grapefruit and davana, a lather with this soap with leave you feeling sweet and cheeky.

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Naked Attractive massage bar

Get up close and personal with this massage bar, which promises a sensual scent of jasmine that surrounds you as you glide it over your (or someone else’s) skin for a seductively soft finish.

It’s what on the inside that counts, but you can also impress your recipient with a nice package, as Lush offers several quirky knot wraps:

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The Karmasutra

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Let’s Get Physical

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BRB gonna go get an aubergine soap from the nearest Lush. 😉 

 

*Photos courtesy of Lush PR Malaysia 

Lush Opens Second Outlet At Sunway Pyramid !

When British cosmetics retailer Lush opened its first outlet in Malaysia at Pavilion KL back in 2018, fans of the brand rejoiced – bye bye, exorbitant shipping fees, hello lovely soaps and bath bombs ! You can read about my first visit here.

Now, just in time for the New Year, Lush has opened its second outlet at Sunway Pyramid – so good news for all the folks living this side of the Klang Valley! You won’t have to get stuck in the jam to Pavilion; just the jam at Sunway instead. 😛

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Innovation and inspiration has been at the heart of Lush since it was started 24 years ago, and this is reflected in everything from its products and philosophy to the very design of its outlets. The Sunway Pyramid store is no exception. Spread across 741 square feet, the new shop is larger than the one at Pavilion KL, which means more space to showcase its products and features.

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One of these is the Fresh Face Mask counter – a deli-inspired display for Lush’s iconic fresh face masks. Slate consultations are offered to customers where products are strung together to make a cohesive and personalised skincare regimen- including benefits on the products, demonstrations and pampering sessions.

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Looks good enough to eat (please don’t)

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Expect to find the brand’s iconic bath bombs, soaps, shower jellies, and much, much more.

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Embracing the environmental movement, the shop is outfitted to eliminate wastage and recycle materials where possible. Many of the products are ‘naked’ (ie no packaging), and if you do need to buy them as gifts, there are beautiful fabric wraps (reusable, and so pretty!) that you can purchase. That aside, the shop uses an LED lighting scheme to save on energy, while all paint and internal materials have been carefully selected to have a minimal environmental impact. No products used have ingredients tested on animals.

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Attractive, colourful displays.

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Creams and skincare products

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Shampoo bars

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Curious about a particular product? Try them out! The friendly staff are always on hand to assist.

LUSH (SUNWAY PYRAMID) 

G1.53, Ground Floor, Sunway Pyramid, Bandar Sunway, Selangor

 

**Photos courtesy of Lush PR. 

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Review: Alila Bangsar – A Zen-Like Oasis in The Heart Of The City

Tucked in a quiet corner of the Brickfields neighbourhood in Kuala Lumpur, Alila Bangsar is a relatively new boutique hotel by Singapore-based luxury hotel and resort chain Alila; the brand’s first in Malaysia. The hotel has been gaining a steady clientele, mainly business folks and couples looking for a chill place to relax within the city, but still close enough to business and entertainment hubs.

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N and I checked in for a weekend staycation, and I was very impressed by the hotel’s distinctive look and design. Modern and zen-like, the lobby on Level 41 was decorated with lots of greenery, and there were floor to ceiling windows which allowed for plenty of sunlight to filter in + offered great views of the surrounding skyline.

We checked into a King Bed Studio Room with Balcony, which was extremely spacious at 38 square metres. The design followed the same vein as the rest of the hotel spaces, with lots of wood, as well as calming, subtle white and beige tones with darker accents.

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Among all the places I’ve stayed at, I think this has got to be my favourite hotel room by far! I’d be happy to come home to a studio apartment like this, to be honest. 🙂

I liked how areas such as the bathroom and the ‘balcony’ (essentially a small living room/work space) were partitioned, but still very open so as to give a sense of added space. Everything was also neatly tucked away, like the fridge and tea/coffee making facilities in the cupboard next to the TV. The warm, ambient lighting added to the overall cosiness.

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A very Instagrammable workspace

 

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Large bathroom with not one but two lighted mirrors!

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I liked the fact that the rain shower and the toilet were separate. No bathtubs since they’re big on being sustainable/environmentally-conscious here. Which means you don’t get the tiny bottles of shampoo and whatnot, but instead refillable pump bottles. They also don’t use plastic bottles, so you pour water from a glass bottle when needed.

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The King-sized bed was so massive I think four thin people could have fit on it! Pillows were soft and fluffy, as was the duvet although it was a tad too warm even when the room temperature was set to 20 degrees. In-room facilities were good too, with many channels to choose from and plenty of plug points for charging, ironing board, weighing scale, laundry bag, bathrobes, etc.

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Guests will find an Alila bag in the room. If you have any items you’d like to leave behind such as clothes, you can put it in the bag and place it into a receptacle/bin on the ground floor. The clothes will then be recycled or donated. The bag can also be purchased for RM35.

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After checking out our room, we made a beeline for the pool, which is located on the 40th floor surrounded by a stunning three-storey atrium. This is one of the hotel’s prettiest spaces, surrounded by loungers and decorative plants to evoke a resort-like vibe, with sky-high views of the neighbourhood. The pool is not covered so you will not be able to swim when it rains (exactly what happened to us after about half an hour in the water).

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Night view.

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Dinner that night was at Botanica + Co, the restaurant downstairs which serves Western and Asian fare. Our order of a seafood pizza was ginormous:  loaded with shrimp, mussel, squid and cheese. Quite tasty.

Unfortunately we did not manage to visit the bars. For those who would like a sip or two, Alila Bangsar has two very nice bars; Pacific Standard on Level 41, and Lido on the rooftop.

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Woke up early the next morning refreshed after a good night’s sleep. Time to hit the gym! The hotel has a small gym. Not exactly state-of-the-art, but adequate, with mostly cardio equipment.

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Okay, we know the real reason we worked out was so we could eat more at breakfast! Morning meals are served at Entier, which doubles as a French semi-fine dining restaurant for lunch and dinner. The chef used to work at a 2-star Michelin restaurant under world-renowned celebrity chef Joel Robuchon, so he has some serious chops.

Entier offers breakfast set meals and a small buffet selection; which I think is great as it reduces wastage.

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Buffet consists of typical breakfast items: cold cuts, pastries and breads with jams, cereal, cookie, salad and fresh fruits.

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Loved the cold cuts ! Especially the smoked duck and the salami.

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N had the Western / Continental set which consisted of scrambled eggs, chicken sausage, beef bacon and potatoes with mushrooms and cherry tomatoes, baked beans and a pancake with strawberry jam. I had the Asian set of congee with fried crullers, mihun goreng, soft boiled egg and chicken dumplings. Tastewise, not particularly impressive but pretty tasty.

All in all, there are a couple of things that I think they could improve on, but it was still a very enjoyable stay. If you’re looking for a calming, resort-like setting that is still close to the city, then Alila Bangsar ticks all the boxes.

What I Liked: Amazing design, contemporary spaces, the whole ‘sustainable’ vibe, very comfortable bed

What I think they can improve on: Service; staff are eager to please but seem a little inexperienced. Also I don’t think this is something they can ‘improve’ on but the lifts are pretty troublesome. There is a lift from the carpark to the ground floor, then one from there to the lobby, and then guests have to take another lift from the lobby to their rooms. So a total of 3 lifts just to get to my car or out of the hotel to the nearby LRT station.

Shuttle services are available to places such as Mid Valley and KL Sentral.

Rooms start from RM430++ per night.

ALILA BANGSAR 

58, Jalan Ang Seng, Brickfields, 50470 Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur

Reservations: alilahotels.com/bangsar