Monday, October 24, 2011

LIVING THE POSH LIFE



“I wanna be a millionaire so freaking bad...” Bruno Mars' chart-topping hit came to mind the minute I stepped into the marbled confines of the 2½-storey BayRocks Bungalow Villa that had been designated as my overnight abode one weekend at Sunway South Quay.



“Mom! This place's like Teen Cribs!” my 13-year old girl whispered in awe when we were given a quick tour of the palatial villa. Especially one with a dedicated glassed-in lift inside!

Who wouldn't want to lounge in such cosy and classy confines?
Elegantly accentuated with opulent marble, timber and natural stones, I had to admit that our precocious little miss was spot on. Imagine two spacious living rooms and an elegant dining room filled with modern pseudo-European furnishings, designer wet and dry kitchens under one roof. Complete with a detached entertainment cum home theatre pavilion that looks out to an outdoor plunge pool with verdant landscaping and water feature enhancements, what's not to like?

Another view of the main living room
A secondary living room for the family on the upper level
The patio leads to the entertainment pavilion and outdoor plunge pool
An island kitchen counter that doubles up as a breakfast nook
The master bedroom was a tad showy for my taste but then again I supposed it is only befitting the interior design should convey a sense of unparalleled luxury.

Dream chamber...the stylishly outfitted master bedroom boasts cream and earth tones
Futurist touches enhance this particular bedroom that is obviously designed for teens
The guest room evokes a sleek, minimalist feel
Before we had a chance to warm our butts on the designer settees, we were whisked off to Sunway Lagoon Resort for a lavish breakfast. After that, we were treated to first-hand experiences of the Royal Blue Exclusive Lifestyle Privileges programme – perks that await purchasers and eventual owners of BayRocks. 

A chic dining set-up to let you entertain in style
Aside from a three-year Sunway Lagoon Club membership, three-year enrolment in the Sunway International Vacation Club, Executive Health Screening at Sunway Medical Centre for two adults under a three-year wellness programme, unlimited access to the Sunway Lagoon Theme Park, and complimentary year-long parking at the Sunway Pyramid Shopping Mall, South Quay's residents enjoy the convenience of having all these different lifestyle components within the Sunway Integrated Resort City at their doorstep.
 
After a bout of whirlwind shopping at the Sunway Pyramid Shopping Mall, the subsequent three-hour sensuous spa and massage treatments for me at the secluded Mandara Spa and a day spent frolicking at the Sunway Theme Park were enough to give us an idea how a family living in South Quay would live, eat and play!

Villa residents don't even have to lift a finger to keep their posh 628-square metre abode spick and span since hired help is but a mere phone call away. Whether it's housekeeping, laundry, florist, limousine, party-planning or outdoor catering services, the Sunway top-notch hospitality services are at practically at one's beck and call on a pay-per-use basis. 

Floating luxury...exclusively for South Quay residents to cruise around the lake
Wanna be the hostess with the mostest? A gala bash on board the luxury South Quay Princess would take the wind out of your guests' sails. Docked at the 28-acre South Quay lake, the sleek 77-foot yacht is available for rent where guests on board can be pampered with a sumptuous dinner catered by the Sunway Lagoon Resort culinary team. 

Scenic sights beckon from the South Quay Princess
It felt somewhat surreal as we cruised around the picturesque lake on that balmy evening. If someone tells me at that very moment that money can't buy happiness, I'd call them a big fat liar!

Grilled beef skewers
Mini glasses of tomato and mozzarella salad   
While the friendly service team plied our party with endless food and drinks, we learned how the lake's depth is carefully monitored and controlled. Extra rainwater that falls into the lake is used to water the greenery surrounding the lake; a great way of recycling the precious resource. 

Homemade beancurd with abalone jus
Lamb cutlets with mustard grain sauce
Steamed cod with king soya sauce
Mini fruit tartlets to round off our sumptuous meal
Before we called it a night, I let the modern rain shower which boasts an open skylight washed away the day's grime and dirt while my daughter lolled happily in the jacuzzi. Girls being girls, we kept 'ooh-ing' and 'aah-ing' over the incredibly roomy dressing and vanity area.

Of course, such grand living costs a king's ransom. Ensconced within South Quay's upscale gated and guarded enclave, each BayRocks Bungalow Villa costs a cool RM5.5 million for the Bayuna model. Still, I suppose the sum's small change for the multi-millionnaires in our midst. Imagine all the pricier lakefront models (there's only 11 units) have already been snapped up whilst the remainder is selling like hot cakes.

For more information, please call 03-5639 9000 or visit sunwaysouthquay.com.my

Thursday, October 20, 2011

CULINARY HUB

One is not enough...this luscious Red Velvet Cake is simply to die for!
I'm no expert on the Red Velvet Cake but the luscious slice we devoured at T42 (GF, tel:03 2161 3581) has shot up to the top of my fave cake ranking!


Cakes for two or more...(front to back) Macadamia Cheesecake, Mont Blanc and Rose Macarons with Raspberry Lychee Cream

Thanks to The Intermark's recent Culinary Hop, I fell head over heels with the outlet's decadent Rose Macarons with Raspberry Lychee Cream and Macadamia Cheese Cake. Even the overly sweet Mont Blanc cake hits the spot when paired with a freshly brewed cuppa.

Feast your eyes on T42's pastel hued selection of macarons! A sight for sore eyes no?

I was surprised but pleased when the place card on my table had my name on it...until I realised 'Alice' actually denotes one of T42's set offerings (RM19.90++)! The plethora includes a House Salad, a choice of sandwich, savoury muffin, tart or quiche with dessert and coffee, tea or soft drink. Not a bad deal huh?


Anyway that merely icing on the cake as earlier we had descended on Kin No Mizu (Level 2, tel: 03 2166 2888), a modern Japanese restaurant that prides itself on serving classic and contemporary specialities.

The Ox Cheek with Special Sauce is hearty and delicious
Roll reversal...tempura prawn and grilled unagi (eel) rolled with seaweed, vinegar-accented rice, sliced avocado, tobikko (flying fish roe), lettuce and mayo come together in the Mizu Maki
Beware of fiery bursts of flavour from the chopped bird's eye chilli sprinkled amidst the fresh slices of yellow tail carpaccio and globules of salmon roe
Velvety smooth texture reigns in this signature dish of Foie Gras with Simmered Radish
Sweet and succulent...jumbo prawns and plump scallops bathed in earthy, peppery truffle sauce is guaranteed to reel foodies in
Although I have been to this place before, nothing could detract from the enjoyment of its signature dishes: Mizu Maki, Yellow Tail Carpaccio with Chilli Padi and Wasabi Soya Sauce, Foie Gras with Simmered Radish, Braised Ox Cheek with Special Sauce and Sauteed Jumbo Prawns and Scallops with Truffle Sauce.


The outlet name which means golden water in Japanese boasts a glass, stone and steel finish with mellow lighting accentuated by flowing water features. Managing Director Simon Sangawa said his team takes great pride in infusing inventive touches to many of the house specials. 


Then we were whisked off for a taste of Northern India delights at Royal India (Level 2, tel: 03 2161 3581). Dainty glasses of chilled Mango Lassi (rich and refreshing) heralded a parade of diminutive bites by Chef Rakesh Prasad: Mixed Tandoori Platter (a hit-and-miss affair), Dum Briyani Mutton (noteworthy), Murgh Makhanwala (creamy and aromatically spiced Butter Chicken), Palak Paneer (top notch), Mixed Bread Basket (fluffy and addictive) and Carrot Halwa (lovely delicate sweetness).

Rice and shine! Thumbs up for the aromatic and fluffy Dum Briyani Mutton
Tandoori to tantalise meat lovers
Enticing...the Carrot Halwa's subtle sweetness is just nice to round off your regal meal
Warm hues and sleek accents rule the roost here with understated decor that leave diners in no doubt the type of cuisine Royal India specialises in.The restaurant is under the same group that runs the Austin Chase Coffee outlet one floor below.


Cosily furnished with plush sofas, Austin Chase (Level 1, tel: 03 2161 3581) draws those who yearn for a java jolt with its premium range of premium coffee and light bites. Complement your designer coffee drinks such as Caramel Macchiato, Mocha Chip Frappe and Signature Black Chocolate with nifty servings of Smoked Salmon Sandwich and Turkey Ham Sandwich.


At Hanare (GF, tel: 03 2164 2133/2633), it was Japanese fine dining with a twist where Chef Kenny San surprised us with his Omakase (chef's choice) selection. On the menu was Wagyu Tataki (slightly seared Wagyu with vinegar sauce), Ebi Shinjo Yasai Maki (rolled Chinese cabbage with minced prawn), Sashimi Moriawase (superfresh tuna and scallop), Anago Tempura (deep-fried sea eel in batter) and Macha Tofu (intriguing green tea beancurd with miso paste).

The interior is equally edgy with lots of stone, wood and slate finishing. Spartan chic is the order of the day here and seems to be well encapsulated in the culinary offerings too.


By the time we docked at Porto Romano (Concourse, tel: 03 2162 6799) I barely have tummy room left for its Italian-Mediterranean fare. Still duty bound, I managed to sample Pasta Nera con Calamari (Squid Ink Pasta) and Pizza al Pesto (Pesto and Chicken Pizza) washed down with a great cup of Italian coffee. Word has it that the Verdure alla Griglia (grilled vegetable), Ravioli with Lobster Meat, Lamb Shank and Crema Catalana are scrumptious enough to satisfy hearty appetites.






It warmed our hearts to know that The Intermark and its tenants pitched in to host a group of underprivileged kids and seniors to a grand buffet feast that was similar to what we had savoured at the International Food Hall. They also went home laden with hampers and gifts presented by Patrick Liau, GM-Finance for The Intermark and tenant representatives. Definitely an afternoon well-spent celebrating The Intermark's 1st Anniversary!

Representatives from the underprivileged homes receiving a mock cheque from Patrick Liau and Ian Barrow, GM of DoubleTree by Hilton KL