Thursday, June 28, 2018

Golden Sands Resort by Shangri-la

Our last trip to Penang was in 2011, when Xav was around three years plus. 7 years later, we made another visit and this time, it was Vera's first. We had planned for a 5D4N stay in Penang but this time round we decided on a hotel away from town and nearer to nature. I decided to "sacrifice" some of the hunting for those must-eat in Penang food. Afterall, how much can the kids' eat if you agree with me? On the contrary, they can go without food as long as there is play! Hence, we decided on a 2 nights stay at Golden Sands Resort (Penang) by Shangri-la, located right on Penang's world renowed Batu Ferringi Beach before we made our transfer to Lexis Suites Penang.

Right after we touched down, the staff from Golden Sands Resort, Penang, were all ready to pick us up as we had ask to arrange for airport pick up to the hotel. Finally, after about an hour's journey (factoring in slow traffic condition),we arrived at the resort.

The staff were welcoming, warm and friendly and  before we could walked into the Cool lounge, the sighting of the pool got the kids really excited, checking in was seamless too! And guess what made me happy, free wifi all around the resort of course so that I could update my Instagram stories about our stay, go search for #JSinPen, if you would like to trace back on our Penang adventures.

We were totally impressed with our Executive Suite , which had full length sliding glass door allowing us to step out to the balcony, where the magnificant view of the beautiful landscape of the resort and the tranquil sea with sound of gentle waves greeted us,  it was a suite with a view!

The room was spacious and luxurious! I have pinned them on my instagram highlights - Golden Sands Resort. Even the balcony was spacious with a beach chair laid facing the sea and I loved that the balcony was stretched all the way to the other living room where there was an additional pull-down bed! Xav 'chope' that bed immediately for the two nights stay while Don could not be any happier because he usually sacrificed the comfy bed for the couch so that there was no need for us to 'fight' for space. This stay, he could comfortably rest on the big and cosy bed!

Cute animal towels with Polly the parrots added a smile to the kids's face ! 

From the balcony of the living room, the two lagoon-style swimming pools, amidst the lush greenary definately looks inviting! It was no wonder the kids were so eager to get changed into their swimming gears and jumped right in!

I loved the shallow pool for children though supervision was needed but we did not need to be so stress that the pool may be too deep for her. The vibrant blue canopy right above, is just perfect to  filter the scorching sun rays without having to compromise the skin to sunburnts thereafter. Play for as long as the kids wanted, no wonder we had a hard time pulling Vera out from the pool!

Look for for some pool activities organised by the staff of Golden Sands Resort too and managed to catch Xav in action for 'running' on water.

Splash Zone is a "zero depth', outdoor water play zone made up of two slides with a landing pool, tipping water bucket, animal sprayers, water cannons and the ground was designed to be anti-slip for the young guests. Thumbs up for all the consideration of making it so kids friendly! We did not managed to play in here because she simply refused to get out of the shallow pool!

How can a family friendly resort do without an indoor playground? Golden Sands Resort had it all in  mind! Adventure Zone is the largest indoor playground in Penang with the facilities built on 10,300 square feet, catering family-style activities.

The highlights of Adventure zone were Hyperglide Astra Slide, the drop slides - Double Drop Slides and Demon Drop Slide which is a 24-feet vertical drop. When I walked up and looked down, I felt a lump in my throat, alright, I chickened out. I would suggest you go slow first, start off with the Hyperglide Astra Slide first before you try the other two.

Overview of Adventure Zone (Ground Floor)

Believe it or not, Hyperglide Astra Slide could be exhilarating too! But seemed like a breeze for the kids!

The old 'kids' gave it a try together !

And the young ones together.

For Double Drop Slide and Demon Drop Slides, long sleeves top are compulsory. So do wear a light, long sleeve top else bring your sweater, if you are planning to take on these slides. Do not forget your socks too!

Demon Drop Double Slides was the one that made Xav's heart beat faster than usual. Initially, he resisted a little when he was seated right at the edge. I was standing somewhere near him but when I looked down, my heart nearly popped out.

It took him a few minutes to remain compose and he accepted the challenge and off he went, not once but a few times. Soon, he got the momentum of it.

apart from the above, there was also an obstacle course surrounding the premises for the young challengers to complete. On the upper level of Adventure Zone, houses Kids' Club, which offers entertainment like Nintendo Wii, a 55 inch TV for movies, playhouse corner, soft toy and board games. We were totally into the slides until we forgot to check out the upper deck.

As for Vera, she was happy to compete with us down Hyperglide Astra Slide and making new friends at the "Toddler Zone" which caters to kids 4 years and below, with a ball fountain, ball pit, padded corner climber, over-under hurdles and more!

Adventure Zone is open daily, from 10 a.m to 7 p.m.

A resort by the beach can never go wrong! Golden Sands Resort Penang, was built on the lovely Batu Ferringghi Beach, known to have softer and finer sand as compared to other beaches as shared by some of my Penangite friends. It was so convenient to hit the beach as it was right behind the Splash Zone.

Back in Singapore, we hardly hit the beach. Imagine the kids were on cloud nine when they were in touch with the sand and sea!

It was not just a beach for sun-tanning, it was a beach with a variety of water sports for you to choose from and Xav got his first ever experience riding on a jetski! He was asking for more after 20 mins.

And we did ventured out to George Town, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, which was only 20 minutes drive away and we took the complimentary shuttle service made available for all guests of Golden Sands Resort. It is recommended that you make the booking one day before. 

Dining options, right next to the resort lobby, it was an open-air venue where Garden Cafe served international spread during breakfast. Garden Cafe has a seating for 235 and I like it that it is strictly a non-smoking area.

I love this part of the cafe especially, where 1/3 of the cafe had glass ceiling right above, allowing the natural sunlight to pass through while we could still enjoy the greenary that surrounds. This cafe only operates from 6.30 a.m to 11 a.m. 

We were were totally spoilt with the array of choices offered but be sure to give the Kapitan chicken a try! The curry was at the mildest level of spiciness yet fragrant with the blend of the spices. The meat of the chicken was really tender, I could easily slide it off the bones.

Always love freshly cook-on-the-spot omelette or a Sunny-Side Up! 

The very friendly staff gave his most vibrant smile. =)

One for the donut

In the evening, dinner was at Sigi Bar and Grill on the beach in the evening and Jenn requested for a table by the beach, no regrets except for the dim lightings after the sky turned pitch dark. 

This kid and family- friendly style restaurant offered both indoor and outdoor dining.

From freshly grilled seafood, oriental food, Malaysia's local favourite like satay and more, the kids were given choices to go for pizza or pasta and even bbq chicken wings. 

Freshly grilled seafood, sausages, chops and others

We were in for a sumptuous buffet and not forgetting the extensive range of desserts on the dessert table. But I would prefer desserts like tiramisu to be served in individual cups than in a whole tray. I felt that it did not look appetizing with the anyhow scooped presentation left behind. 

Tasty grilled lamb anyone ?
Photographed by Jenn

We fell in love with the mersmerising sunset and watched the parasailers drifted across the
glowing skies as we dined. We had been on and off running to the beach and sent our phone cameras
clicking away. 

It was truly a blessing to enjoy those moments with the family and friends, in that moment, with Jenn and her family. How often do we get to have such moments, these moments were indeed precious. 

Golden Sands Resort by Shangri-la bagged two awards in 2012, for "Most Family-Friendly Hotel" as well as "Best Family Stay" category for the Expatriate Lifestyle Best of Malaysia 2012 Awards. I will highly recommend Golden Sands Resort, if you are planning for a Beach Vacation in Penang. This award winning resort offers much more than I have mentioned above. Thank you Golden Sands Resort for having us and we will definately be back again. Totally perfect for a beach vacation!

Batu Ferringgi Beach, Penang, 11100, Malaysia.
Phone: (60 4) 886 1911 

You can also visit Golden Sands Resort by Shangri-la's Social Media pages for their future updates: 

Planning for a family vacation to Penang with the family, hop over to Mylilbookworm as she got it blogged "Penang with Kids".

Other Malaysia related post: 

Thank you for reading and if you would like to stay tune for future updates, do follow me on Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram

Disclaimer: This is a partially sponsored post, no monetary compensation is involved and all opinions are of my own. 

Saturday, June 16, 2018

Unearth the nature of wonders with Canon Singapore and D'kranji Farm Resort

D'Kranji Farm Resort , I have always wanted to visit this farm but have procrastinated as it was quite far and out of the way for us as we do not drive but that's not the main concern. Whenever I mentioned my intention of going, Don would comment that why would I want to go there and feed mozzies!

Due to the historic Trump-Kim summit, the very weekend after we touched down from Penang, my solo-parenting started as Don was pre-occupied with his duties and I think I was good to bring both kids and join Canon Singapore in their event without having him to roll his eyes at me ! (giggles) And did I tell you, I finally made it for Canon Singapore outdoor events! The previous two years, my travel dates kept clashing with the event dates. So,  here we go !

Photo credit: AM Collective

All the way to the north-west region of Singapore, the morning was great, we were all well prepared with mozzie patches sticking onto us front and back, neck to legs down and I wiped a drop or two of Young Living Purification essential oil all over our limbs and clothes as well for double protection.

We had a short briefing to update us on the latest Canon camera models available in the market before we headed out and about on a photo challenge, to decode the clue cards with the assigned cameras. I was assigned with Canon Powershot G9X. which was slim and light, easily held with one hand as my other hand was holding on to Vera.

Xav and Vera were so excited hunting for the answers to the clues around the farm, it was educational for them at the same time to learn more about plants and identify and getting their senses involved while I was busy capturing moments and making memories for them. Come make your guesses!

"You certainly can't miss my intense aromma and flavour. Besides, I am always used in Spicy Food. " - Curry leaves

"I may woke up a sweat when you bite into me and I have 7 times the vitamin C level of an Orange." - Chilli 

"The fragrance of my leaves is distinctive, I am often found in desserts and drinks."

Found it - Pandan leaves 

Amongst the many different types of herbs, plants and trees were identified by the little ones and they got pretty excited to see a chilli plant, having tiny chillies srpouting all over.

Photo credit: AM Collective 

Me and my happy farmers 
Xav and Vera were in for an unexpected surprise! Uncle showed them a big, fat and active caterpillar! The kids loved it and as usual they are much braver than me when comes to handling creepy crawlies! Watch the clips here.

Photo credit: AM Collective
We ended the tour with a koi milk bottle feeding session, a simple activity yet it brought smiles and laughter to the kids. It tickled them much when the kois were sucking food from the bottles!

We returned to the room and had our beautiful pictures printed out using the Canon printers and planned to do up a layout with the printed pictures! #PIXMAprintsbetter 

There were alot of activities and workshops that you can do at D'Kranji Farm Resort, such as In-house farm tours, terraiums workshop and I think the carnivorous workshop is really interesting! There are many others, click

Not the most convenient place in terms of accessibility but definately a place where you can retreat to, experience a farm stay at the countryside and get in touch with nature. Thank you Canon Singapore once again for having us.  

Thank you for reading and if you would like to stay tune for future updates, do follow me on Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram

Monday, June 11, 2018

Renovatio - Activated Phenolics + APSKIN Antioxidant Skin Care

It is not easy to find a supplement which can cater for the whole family until I spoke to Dr Vincent Candrawinata, scientist from University of Newcastle and founder of Renovatio, about Activated Phenolics. I could not make it for the event and was really grateful that Dr Vincent made time out a day before just to explain more about this supplement to me upon request.

It was only when Vera turned 4, then I started introducing supplements to her as I strongly believed that the immunity of a young child should be built up naturally and not loading their young liver with loads of supplements for the first three years. To add on, given her eczema history, I am starting to give her supplements to improve her intestinal and gut health, adding on enzymes to help break down the nutrients for better absorption just one year ago.

I was intrigued by the fact that Activated Phenolics uses a specific blend of 100% Australian apples, 6 different types of apples. What made me even wanted to let Vera try it was, unlike most supplements, the extraction for Activated Phenolics does not involved any chemical solvent unlike most of the supplements on shelves. The revolutionary process only involves apples and water, the first in the 80 year history of supplement development.

Activated Phenolics is one of  the rare among the supplements I knew of, that can be cater to improve the well being for the old and and young. Totally safe for :

- Kids ( 2- 15 years old) 
It helps with improving the immunity, cognitive function for better concentration, nutrient absorption and skin conditions caused by cellular inflammation. It is also good for digestive issues, as the powder contains a propriety fibre (alkalizing Oligospectine) with prebiotic function which helps promote digestive health and maintainance of hydration.

Recommended dossage: One teaspoon of Activated Phenolics powder daily in water or juices.

I sprinkled on top of one of her most hateful fruits, dragonfruit. Vera actually ate more than half portion of it unlike the normal days. Either that, or I will make a teaspoon and add some water and she drinks it up.

- Adults (16-55 years old) 

It helps with fighting fatigue (if you are feeling sluggish everyday), weight management, better nutrients absorption, digestive and gut health issues, good skin health and hydration maintenance, recovery from drinking alcohol as well as after exercise.

Recommended dosage: For maintenance in healthy adult bodies, a heaped teaspoon up to twice a day or one tablet a day. For extra protection or help, you can up to one tablespoon of Activated Phenolics powder twice a day or two tablets per day. Activated Phenolics Powder is retailing at $72 Sgd per tube of 280g.

Recently, I visited my regular TCM and she asked if my energy level was really low based on my pulse, I must say she was quite spot on. All the out-and-about on certain mornings to report for work, pick Xav from school, bringing Vera for her therapies and all the accumulated solo-parenting moments had definately drained me out. For weeks right up till the exam period in mid may, by 4pm in the day, I was totally dead. I would plonk and fall asleep after doing a bit of revision with  Xav around 4pm, taking a 30-45 mins catnap to recharge before Vera returns. 

Just when I received Renovatio - An Apple a DayI took one tablet a day in the morning, after a week, I observed that I was more energetic and I could actually do away with that 30 mins power nap. Acivated Phenolics are powerful antioxidants that neutralise a wide range of free radicals which can be taken daily to protect your cells from damage and inflammation and to give support to promote better health and wellbeing. 

I am a lazy person when it comes to supplements. I will prefer to go for tablet for more convenience and if you have been feeling really sluggish and low in energy, I would suggest look into working on your adrenals too, on top of taking supplements.

- Eldery (55 - 90 years old)

As one ages, the recovery process slows down and the immunity as well. Activated Phenolics helps the eldery in terms of improving energy level and immune system, cognitive functions like memory and concentration, helps to bring down inflammatory joints and joint pain, protecting the liver, pancreas and kidney as well as serving as additional support for eldery fighting more serious condition.

Recommended dosage: For enhanced cellular protection, go up to one tablespoon of Activated Phenolics powder twice a day or two tablets a day.

Dr. Vincent did shared that his grandmother who had difficulty walking long distance due to pain at the knee joints, after taking the powder for a period of three months, her condition improved significantly and he was really surprised to see her being able to walk a long distance during her visit to him in Australia.

I have always believed in personal testimonial, it is the most powerful when it comes to how well a product worked for one purely from a personal experience. I am going to get this for my mum to try it out for her ostheo-arithis, the constant, nagging pain which she has been experiencing all these while.
An Apple a Day is retailing at $42 Sgd for a bottle of 30 tablets.

Renovatio - APSkin Skin Care (100ml)

When I learnt that APSkin Skin Care can help with cell regeneration and supporting cellular repair. It contains the right broad spectrum antioxidants offering powerful cellular repair and reducing cellular inflammation to help with conditions such as eczema, sun damage, dermititis, keloid, acne scarring, persistant acne, wrinkles and age spots. The properties of how the product could help with the above convinced me that I would have to try it out as a moisturizer on my face. Just a tiny bit on my cheeks which were more on the dry side to keep it moisturized and it did not leave a sticky feel nor make my face appeared oily after application.

Photo credit: Biovida

Unfortunately, I have a recent episode from Vera to show you how her skin has improved with two application. It was not an eczema flare but somehow it started off with some rashes at the groin area which gradually spreaded to the labia and inner thighs. She had a history of such similar rashes that spreaded from her back to her legs and the itch would usually last for 2 weeks and it took weeks for those rough patches to go off on their own. Her complexion was akin to back to those days where she had those dry and rough patches during her eczema flares. It gave me goose-bumps at times when I have to bathe her and apply creams for her.

She was very uncomfortable by the itch and hence, started to scratch. Her skin was slightly broken from the scratches and I tried APSkin on the affected area and learnt that it had stung her by a little. I concluded that I could only apply APSkin IF there is no open wound. Her skin has been so rough and uncomfortable to touch but in less than a week, I could feel the difference on her inner thighs. The skin was restored gradually and was smoothened out by the fifth day! I will let the photos speak for how effective the cream was. Looking to restore back the skin without any steriod intervention, why not give Renovatio APSkin a try ! It is retailing at $49 Sgd per tube of 100ml.

You can visit Renovatio Facebook Page and Instagram: RenovatioBio for the latest updates and promotions and Activated Phenolics is now available in Singapore and you can purchase through Biovida Look out for their bundle deals too !

For more information, you can also turn to Biovida's social media pages for the latest promotion updates.
                                                                 Facebook | Instagram 

If you would like to read back on Vera's eczema episode and how I managed it, click on the link below and I hope it helps you if you are in a similar situation:

Thank you for reading and if you would like to stay tune for future updates, do follow me on Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram

Disclaimer: This is a sponsored review, no monetary compensation is involved and all opinions are of my own.

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