Tuesday, 30 July 2013

My New Place (Part 2)

Here are some more updates on my condo renovations.

25 July 2013 -- Painting works have commenced in the bedroom.
-- Dragged Raj Boy to the Inovar Flooring showroom in Jalan Penchala to choose the type of flooring. Burmese Teak it is!

26 July 2013 -- Made 80% payment to Inovar Flooring via Maybank2u. This needs to be done before they install the flooring, which has been scheduled on Friday, 2 August 2013.

27 July 2013 -- Dragged Angie to Ikea for some serious shopping. I got myself an Ektorp 3-seater sofa and a Hemnes television bench.

When I purchased the same Ikea sofa about 5 years ago, I just had to mention which sofa I wanted, pay for it and they would deliver to my house. This time I had to go to the storage area, look for the sofa, place it on my trolley, roll it to the cashier to make payment and finally roll it to the delivery counter for delivery. Have you seen how big a 3-seater sofa is? Thankfully the Ikea staff were around to help us do the lifting. Delivery date and assembly is on Friday, 2 August 2013 together with Inovar Flooring installation. I like to kill many birds with one stone :-)

28 July 2013 -- Went to check on the renovations. The Nippon Lilly White colour that the contractor suggested turned out more yellowish than white. Sigh ... I had wanted a white effect to make my tiny condo look bigger, but not pure white. So the contractor suggested Lilly White. Now I have to live with yellow for the next couple of years.

More to come soon ...

Wednesday, 24 July 2013

New Bathroom Tiling

I went to see the newly laid bathroom tiles this evening after work.

The contractor had told me earlier that the tiles look lovely and I had to see it for myself. I returned home a happy girl :-)

When I went tile hunting, I was worried that my choice of tiles, especially the colour and texture, would not jive. But it did, yeah!

I took a picture of the newly laid tiles with my mobile phone, but I can't download it to my lappy. I'll definitely post pics of the whole place when it's fully completed with furniture and all.

Next, I need to choose the type of laminated wood flooring for the bedroom. There are many choices and I hope I make the right one. Of course the pricing would be one of the deciding factors as I'm on a tight budget.

Stay tuned ...

Saturday, 20 July 2013

Sin City - Las Vegas!

Deep in the Nevada desert lies Sin City - Las Vegas!

Vegas never sleeps and welcomes anyone and everyone ...

... with a host of activities especially its casinos where gamblers can gamble all day and night long ...

Another attraction in Vegas is Caesar's Palace ...

Caesar's Palace is named after Julius Caesar, a famous dictator of the Roman Republic whose words: Veni, Vedi, Vinci (I came, I saw, I conquered) is probably the hope of all casino goers in Caesar's Palace - to conquer the casino table and win lotsa $$$.

Apart from its casinos, Caesar's Palace also has many superstars performing shows. Looking at its website, Celine Dion, Rod Stewart and Shania Twain are currently performing there.

Do you know that Malaysian diva, Anita Sarawak also performed in Caesar's Palace before?


Last Tuesday I went to watch The Lone Ranger with Larry simply because Johnny Depp is one of his favourite actors.

Halfway through the movie, the screen went black but the sound was still working. After two attempts at repairing the movie reel (I assume it's a movie reel), we were still looking at a black screen. So we decided to get a refund on our tickets which TGV KLCC gladly did. 

Since I didn't watch the movie in totality, I don't think I'll watch it again because I'd need to watch the first half all over again, hahaha. I think I'll watch Pacific Rim or The Wolverine instead.

Note: The fridge magnets displayed in this entry were picked up by Art the Fridge Magnet Fairy who was in Sin City and The Lone Star State recently for work.

Sunday, 14 July 2013

My New Place

In December 2012, I viewed a condo in the heart of KL city, fell in love with it and made an offer. Since the seller (who is American) was desperate to dispose off his unit, I managed to bargain down the price a little [(happy :-)].

After the average 6 months of completing the entire process of owning a property, i.e. engaging a lawyer, looking for a bank loan with the best rates, preparing the Sales & Purchase agreement, etc. I finally got the keys on 19 June 2013. 

For the past few weeks I had been busy looking for a contractor to renovate the unit and sourcing for interior deco ideas. 

The challenge is moving from 930 sq ft to 581 sq ft. I've started learning to live with less ... 

Here's a chronology of events that happened after I got the keys:

5 July -- Followed contractor to choose tiles, WC, rain shower, etc. Brought mum and bro along for second opinion. The shops were in Klang coz it's my hometown and things are cheaper there compared to KL :-)
-- Stopped by Homme Basics in Subang Jaya to get my favourite towel holder. This seems to be the only place selling it!
-- Lawrence from Inovar Floor came to measure my bedroom to provide a quotation. I had already booked the offer prices and paid a RM500 deposit during HOMEDEC in KLCC couple of months ago.
-- Paid RM1,000 renovation deposit (refundable) to condo management. This is standard procedure for anyone who wants to renovate their unit. I also had to provide them with the names and IC numbers of the contractors. 
-- Paid RM3,000 deposit to contractor.
-- Collected cupcakes from Gerald (NomNom KL). I need to reward myself after all the hard work :-)

7 July -- Dragged TC to Houz Depot to look for a ceiling fan (with lights) for the bedroom, mirror cabinet for the bathroom, foldable stools and chairs, etc. Spent RM855.30.
(Note: Having a credit card is extremely useful in situations where I need to make large ticket items like the items I bought from Houz Depot. But of course I need to be disciplined and pay it off in total each month to avoid interest charges. There are numerous credit cards in the market and to see which one suits you best, click here.

8 July -- Renovation works commenced. The contractors are starting with the bathroom coz it's where the major works are. I'm removing the bathtub (I don't use it and the bathroom is bloody small) and replacing the wall & floor tiles, WC and sink. 

14 July -- A neighbour brought her church friend to collect my old clothes, bags, writing notebooks, mugs, etc. for charity. Need to clear up lots of stuff before I move.
-- Went to Kian Classic to enquire for a built-in wardrobe. The salesman told me that they need about 1 month to install the wardrobe. I think I'll look for another supplier.

Stay tuned for more updates. 

I'll post pics once the renovation is completed.

Saturday, 13 July 2013

Review: Pleasant Stay at Railay Bay Resort & Spa

There's only one word to describe Railay: AWESOME!

One of the reason the holiday was awesome was because of Railay Bay Resort & Spa.

I chose the resort simply because Groupon had an offer. Costs only RM798 for a 4D/3N stay for 2 in the Privacy Cottage with daily breakfast.

My first encounters with Railay Bay Resort & Spa were not great. First of all, our reservation was not in the system despite me making the reservation 3 months in advance via email. A few days before our trip, I called up the resort just to be sure, and that was when I found out they screwed up our reservation. Thankfully it was the low season and we were travelling on a weekday, so the Privacy Cottages were still available.

Secondly, I read many negative comments about the resort and the Privacy Cottage on Tripadvisor - that it's dirty and not well maintained, etc. So I discussed with TC and said that we would inspect the cottage first upon checking in. If it's not up to our expectation, we would ask to change cottage. Thankfully, our cottage was fine, although it's a bit rundown and could do with a refurbishment.

The Privacy Cottage certainly lives up to its name. There's a high wall surrounding each cottage that you could run around naked and no one would know :-)

Each cottage has its own jacuzzi, which is on the right of this pic. When I got home I realised I didn't take any pic of it :-(

The interior of the Privacy Cottage is spacious and woody:

I love the king sized bed!

The bathroom is big ...

 ... the shower cubicle looks rundown (which could have contributed to the negative comments on Tripadvisor):

Can sit and let the water fall on your head. Pity it was not a rainshower, or else I would have sat there for hours. And what a waste of water that would have been :-)

 This is the lane that leads to the Privacy Cottage:

Reminded me of Bali.

And this is the doorway to our Privacy Cottage:

Housekeeping would ring the doorbell every morning at around 9.30am to clean the room. We would tell them to come back later because we're on holiday and we want to sleep in, but not late enough to miss breakfast lah.

On our second night there, we couldn't get into the Privacy Cottage after dinner because the latch had accidentally fallen and bolted the door from the inside.

So me being the heroine climbed over the high walls to save the day :-)

Thank heavens my parents allowed me to climb trees when I was growing up in Port Klang. Never knew it would come in handy later on in life, hahaha.

TC pointed out that Railay Bay Resort & Spa needs to be commended for their attention to detail.

Ready in the room are a plastic mat for lazing on the beach and a torchlight which came in handy since we lazed on the beach till late and needed light to make our way back to the cottage. A rattan beach bag was also provided to carry our stuff like beach towel, camera and our other companions - Gin & Vodka, hahaha.

Who would think of bringing such stuff on a beach holiday? Moreover it would take up luggage space. But Railay Bay Resort & Spa certainly remembered to provide for their guests.

Just outside the row of Privacy Cottage is a lovely pool where we spent our afternoons lazing and reading before heading to the beach towards the evening to indulge in nude sunbathing :-)

This is the other pool at the entrance of the resort:

This pool is perpetually crowded probably because it's facing the beach.

Breakfast is served in the coffee house. The spread is good with a mixture of Asian and Western food to cater to their guests from both sides of the world.

It was nice having sea breeze in my hair while I enjoyed my breakfast.

Tables are also placed on the beach for those who want to feel the sand in their feet as they have their breakfast.

Despite the negative experiences before the trip, Railay Bay Resort & Spa turned out better than expected, which was a pleasant surprise.

We had originally planned to head back to Krabi and spend our last day (4th night) there before flying back to KL. But since we were so cosy at the resort, we decided to extend our stay. We had to pay normal prices for that extra night since the Groupon voucher was only valid for 3 nights.

Railay Bay Resort & Spa will always hold fond memories for me :-)

Friday, 5 July 2013

Holy Fridge Magnets

On Page 4 of any Malaysian passport, there's a sentence that reads, 'This passport is valid for all countries except ...

But late last year, the Malaysian government had relaxed this ban. Now Malaysians can travel to Israel for up to 21 days at a time. Previously, only Malaysians on pilgrimage were allowed to enter to Israel and limited to 700 Malaysians each year, with only 40 from one church. They also also allowed to stay up to only 10 days at one time. You can read a report in The Star here.

Now that the travel ban has been lifted, I wonder whether the new Malaysian passports will still have that sentence stating that the passport is valid in all countries except Israel.

I guess Jerusalem would be the point of entry into Israel for most travellers. 

What wonders Jerusalem holds for Christians!

There's also this place in Israel called ...

... which was the location for many Biblical events which you can read here.

Across the border in Palestinian territory is ...

Whenever I think of Bethlehem, I think of Christmas and carols start playing in my head :-)

Note: The fridge magnets in this entry were from Celia who visited Israel last month. She never had to experience any travel ban into Israel because she is a Singaporean. Read all about her travels in Israel here.

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