Sunday, January 19, 2014

:: birthday getaway ::

On 17th January 2014 my age increased to another number. Alhamdulillah with His blessing I am still able to breathe until this day, continue to live and surrounded by my loved ones. Apparently the entire nation "celebrated" my special day with a public holiday - the Thaipusam. We did not travel anywhere during last year end so we thought it would be good to travel somewhere and at the same time celebrate my birthday. The inital plan was Hard Rock Hotel Penang but few weeks ago I ended up making reservation for Legoland Hotel in Johor instead. Lego is one of my favourite toys. When I was a kid I used to save my daily school allowance just to purchase one small set of pirate-themed lego set because I really liked it. It was priced between RM20 to RM30 back then but with a RM1 daily allowance it was quite tough to collect and achieve it.

Anyway, we travelled on Thursday 16th January with Malindo Air. It was a 7:45 am flight and the ticket was priced at an unbelievable rate of RM39 one way from KLIA. It was a very good deal because we travelled with a Boeing flight instead of propeller and most importantly we didn't need to walk outdoor and climb the stairs (ala-ala travel in style gitew). I personally recommend the airline because the seating area was spacious and there was in-flight entertainment even for short distance flight - just bring along personal headphone or purchase one if interested. Earlier that morning we travelled to KLIA from home via taxi that we booked via My Teksi app. It was a very reliable app indeed. We booked for the cab to arrive at 6:00 am and when it was in front of our home, a notification was updated with "your driver has arrived".

We straight away travelled to Legoland Hotel in Nusajaya from Senai Aiport to register and to keep our luggage because we wanted to enter Legoland immediately. It was around 35 minutes journey and the airport taxi rate was RM68. Check-in time is at 4:00 pm anyway so we didn't expect to wait. It was neither public holiday nor weekend so the park was not crowded at all. We took a lot of family photos, thanks to the photographers who were always on standby at strategic locations. They didn't mind to snap our photos with our personal camera before using their camera and we were given a strap which they can scan to upload our pics.

We let Ady enjoyed the rides. First he drove a car around the track. He still didn't know how to handle the steering so he kept on crashing into the curb. We then rode a boat together then took turns to accompany Ady riding Lego aeroplane. Waiting time for each ride was less than 5 minutes or none! Ady loved the aeroplane so much. He rode it twice in the morning and four more times in the evening without waiting. Even if there is a waiting line, kids won't feel too restless because a table of Lego is always there for them to play with. The entire park is very kids friendly!

At Duplo town area. There was a huge covered place where kids can play with Duplo Lego and ride a train. A good place to rest and catch some breath. There were restaurant and nursing room too.

The viewing tower where we could view the entire park from above. Lego Technic Academy is targetted for teenagers and adults. Hubby joined the free 45 minutes programming class and made his robot move to cut a wire.
The Lego City was filled with significant miniature of buildings and landmarks, all made of Lego. It was really impressive. That KLCC looks so real isn't it?
Not in any photo is the Lego Kingdom area with a huge castle. Ady had his usual afternoon nap so we took turns and had chance experiencing the roller coasters; one in Technic area and another in the Kingdom. Both rides were not as challenging as the Cyclone in Universal Studio Singapore or those in Movie World Gold Coast but they weren't too bad. Since the park was not crowded with guests, one day at the dry park is good enough for me. There are still other attractions that we did not experience due to age or height requirements so there is actually a lot more to ride and explore. Yet I really had a great time and enjoy the entire day.
Among highlights about the park based on my observation:
1. Legoland dry park is not only a theme park because there is always something for everybody at every age. If you don't like riding any game you can enjoy sightseeing at the Lego City area, riding train around the park or riding a boat. For those who love taking photos, it is definitely a perfect place for photography session because everything is unique and colourful.
2. Park opens at 10:00 am and close at 6:00 pm during weekdays and 7:00 pm during public holidays and weekends.
3. Restaurants or food stalls are everywhere. Please expect higher price compared to food outside but they were not too expensive.
4. Legoland staff is very warm and helpful. From my observation many of them naturally love kids and very patience. It is something that one could not pretend and I really respect that. Keep it up, guys.
5. There is wide range of Lego products that we may not find elsewhere. Rambang mata sangat! They do not stated anywhere but we received many free gifts too depending on total amount purchase. When we checked our bags there were a lot of extra stuff. Awesome meh.
6. Legoland has proper praying place or surau located at the main entrance area. Couldn't find such proper facility at other theme parks such as Universal Studio Singapore (during our visit last time there was only a small room) or Disneyland. There is high population of Muslims around Asia so they should consider that actually.
7. Explore the park and let your photos taken by the official photographers. It is not compulsory to purchase any at the end, but let me warn you there is a tendency to do so after viewing them :-P We viewed our photos 20 minutes before the park closed and ended up purchasing our family photo on lego bricks. It is a unique souvenir as they can be disassembled if we want to, just like playing normal Lego. The entire package came with another three (3) sets of printed photos and all four (4) photos can be viewed online, saved and shared via social media. It's worth the purchase.
We checked into our room later in the evening but I will write a review about Legoland Hotel in the next post. That night we had dinner at Medini Mall located next to the hotel. It was an open concept mall, with a number of restaurants and shopping outlets however the entire place close quite early. Some restaurants were already closed when we arrived at 8:30 pm. We had dinner at Chicken Rice Shop and according to the staff the place usually close a bit late and crowded only during weekends.

On 17th January which was my birthday we said goodbye to the hotel at 11:00 something in the morning. Our flight was at 3:05 pm so we decided to spend few hours left at Johor Premium Outlet. We rented a car stroller for our little boy - RM30 fee for one day rental with RM100 deposit. It was our second visit to JPO, the first one when it was just opened two years back. Now it has expended to the second phase with more outlets such as Furla, Timberland, Aigner and others but nothing really attracted me. Ended up buying a pair of wedges from Pedro, the wedges that Fila and I had our eyes on when it was displayed in Empire last year.

JPO to Senai Airport was merely 10 minutes drive so we departed at 2:15 pm with a cab. Our flight was slightly delayed and we arrived KLIA around 5:30 pm. Although we were only travelling within Malaysia the experience was very different because we took flight and travelled with taxis. We felt like tourists in our own country and such experience is in line with 2014's Visit Malaysia year :-D

It was a memorable getaway indeed, thanks to Mr. Husband and lil boy Ady Rifqi who made the experience more exciting and wonderful - double, triple the fun!

May this year brings me a lot of love, luck, good health, happiness and prosperity. Ameen.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

:: the first of 2014 ::

After a long disappearance I suddenly become a frequent blogger (not). Actually I didn't switch off this laptop after publishing the last blog entry for 2013 although after hitting the 'publish' button we all went out to view fireworks on a flyover - had nasi lemak at Warung Nasi Lemak Opah in Taipan USJ area - came back playing with Ady and finishing up a DIY project - but since the laptop is still alive, I want to take this opportunity to publish the first entry of 2014.

We welcomed the new year on the flyover of USJ to Sunway route. We did it for the first time in 2013 so this is the second year and having the chance to view most fireworks displayed in the Klang Valley area from the spot is all we need. No entertainment required. Just waited in the car, went out of the car merely 2-3 minutes before the clock strikes 12:00, enjoyed the view, snapped few photos and off we go when the sky turned dark again. Back in the old days my definition of new year celebration was hanging out at the KLCC park enjoying performance and watching fireworks on top of my head but that definition is no longer available these days. I don't mind admitting what I did in the past - they all remain in memory and I'm blissful with the life I'm having now as an adult, a wife and a mother. I'm not sure what kind of blog post I'm writing here so before I ramble further here is my first pic for the year 2014:
 Ady was actually watching fireworks from Sunway Lagoon. here is another shot...
...few seconds after the first pic...
Ah, better view!
My eyes couldn't sleep through out the night. Before started writing this post I just finished creating a headpiece for a ballerina. I received an order from someone at the office for her daughter ballet performance. I know nothing about ballet so I have asked the customer to share pic of a sample as well as the attire. The colour combo is gold and blue; and this is how the end result looks like:
 Hopefully both mother and daughter are satisfied and happy
*worried face*

So there goes my six hours of day one in 2014. Wishing and hoping for wonderful, blessed and healthy 364 days ahead.

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