Wednesday, June 28, 2023

Good Luck Foodcourt @ Skycasino

[Throwback] I utilised my points to claim this meal set. I had this roasted pork rice with only 5 points😁
it came with a cup of hot Chinese tea.
In another meal, I had the chicken chop. It was just so-so, chicken was tough, but can't complain much with a free meal like this.
After trying the roasted pork rice and western food, i tried the noodles on another day. Ordered a plate of wanton with charsiu noodles.
The wantons are tasty. I hope they could give more...3 pieces are just not enough!
LOL, greedy me!
Next time I wish to try the ramen. The shop is located outside the casino foodcourt. Yes, it accepts points too...hopefully it will still accept points when i visited the outlet in the near future.
The ramen looks good from the menu board😋
[Below] A glimpse of the busy and crowded Skycasino at midnite. The LCD graphics on the ceiling changes every minute (rotate from 'daytime' scene to 'dawn' and to 'night'). I was on the second floor when snapping this picture (illegally, coz taking picture is not allowed in casino). The third floor is 'covered' with tinted glass and is only accessible to Gold/Platinum members.

Saturday, June 24, 2023

Mee Goreng Mamak @ Kwong Wah's, Pavillion Bukit Jalil

[Throwback] I had a short meetup with friend at Kwong Wah's.
This time, I decided to try out some other items from the menu apart from their usual ABC/cendol.
I ordered a plate of mee goreng mamak with sotong. It came with a half-sized boiled egg. The noodle portion is generous too. It was served hot, fresh from the wok. Tastewise OK, flavorful but slightly sweet. I might order this again, but not that soon. 
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Meanwhile, i tried out Gardenia instant noodles, known as 'numee'
The 'numee' curry flavor is spicier than the Maggi Kari. The Maggi Kari powder has slight star anise taste, however, there is none detected for this.
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[Below] The view facing south with cloudy skies. Picture taken on late April, days before leaving to SG.

Wednesday, June 21, 2023

La Rosti Trattoria Express

On Monday, I start my first day at the Panama office. The Mr-Nice-Guy, cum colleague and ex-tenant of the apartment, Joe invited me for a lunch with him. So, we went to the restaurant nearby the office, which is operated by a Venezuelan family. Joe is a friendly guy who knows everyone within his 10km radius, and he is very much known by the owner of this eatery too. They speak in Spanish and i just did my ordering by pointing at the dishes.
Very much like 'chap-fan/food court' style ordering, but with western dishes.
[Below] Chicken chop in cream sauce, i think.
I had their set lunch which consists of 2 veggies dishes of your choice + 1 meat dish of your choice + grain/carbs + drink
Here's my plate - Beefballs, some mixed veggies, local rice and a separate plate of coleslaw.
My hearty meal.
This is a set meal (which came with drinks) for only USD10.95 + 7% tax.
The interior of the restaurant. It is run by the family members of mother, father and son (perhaps their relatives as well). Great service, tasty food and nice ambience.
They also serve desserts such as cakes and pastries, but I was too full to try. According to another colleague, their home-baked cakes are excellent.
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This is how the apartment lobby looks like, I pass by this area daily on the way to the elevator.
The recreational area, where there is an indoor gym, swimming pools and multipurpose event hall (for rent by tenants only) 
Well, the facilities are pretty much like a typical Malaysian apartment/condominium standard.
Nevertheless theirs are well-maintained and the area is clean.
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[Below] Me lazying on the comfy couch. Despite a 60 inch TV, it wasn't configured with any local channel, hence I can only watch YouTube TV😂.
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Quick fact: Ground floor is known as planta baja in Spanish. So, the elevator button shows as PB (instead of GF)

Tuesday, June 20, 2023

Panoramic View

The following day, I was still adjusting to the time zone differences, so am just staying and lazying in the apartment.
Here are some views taken from the balcony.
The apartment that i'm staying has 42 floors and my unit is at 39th. This building/tower is the highest point among the vicinity. The unit is facing the housing area which consists of flats and terrace houses, very much like Malaysia. Even the weather is exactly the same, with hot and humid tropical weather.
Despite the similar weather and housing type, there are several differences that i notices:
people here speaks Spanish, very little or none English
they drive on the right
USD notes is the legal tender in Panama, however, their coins are a mix of US coins and Panamanian Balboa coins, which carries the same value. I was having a hard time to identify the penny, nickel, dime and quarter coz there are some in US coins and some in Balboa with their local spelling, for example quarter = un cuarto de balboa.
more details on their coins, please refer here.
and i'm still couldn't get the logic of having the size of the 5cent coin bigger than the 10cent😂
These pictures (on the wall) exactly shows my puzzlement.
After lazying around for more than a day, I ventured out from my comfy crib, to get some food and groceries!
Walked past some interesting spots, such as a Chinese church...
There are several fast food restaurants within the neighbourhood, and the established ones have their standalone building, with drive thru.
Even the Krispy Kreme doughnuts have its own building with upper floor dine-in area.
I made a note to come back for their doughnuts someday...
In the meantime, let me settle my dinner at Burger King first. And yes, it has its own building.
The menu board - items are in Spanish (with some English) and prices in USD/Balboa.
Ordering the food was challenging, coz the staff doesn't speak nor understand English. This was my first encounter with their locals (other than the GM that I met earlier, who is proficient in English), so i wasn't expecting such level of comprehension.
Well, gotta use Google Translate.
I had Double Whopper at USD8.85 nett
After then, I walked back to the apartment and discovered more eateries located just opposite the tower that I'm staying.
There are Papa John Pizza, Chicken Lab, Dinastia Tang (Chinese/Asian restaurant), Oh-Toro (Japanese restaurant), plus a few pizzas and burgers restaurants.

Friday, June 16, 2023

First meal in Panama

It was almost 6pm when I arrived at Panama Tokumen International airport.
It is a small airport and the check-out was smooth and quick. The airport has sniffer dogs and somehow my suitcase was 'marked' by a junior sniffer dog for further checking (darn!). So, I proceeded to the baggage inspection. Quite scary especially when I'm not sure what sort of 'illegal' items I have brought in my suitcase. Luckily, the inspector found nothing illegal (phew!), though I'm still puzzled with that incident.
At the arrival hall, I was picked up by the company's driver who wrote my name big enough so that I could notice it😂
I was then chauffeured to the apartment and greeted by the GM of Panama office and another colleague who was posted there from another office. That colleague (Joe) is a friendly guy who used to stay in the apartment that I will be staying. He took care of my first meal (dinner) by ordering a huge delivery from Austin Mama's Brisket restaurant, which is located nearby.
It came in a few boxes of items packed separately and he assembled these on the plate.
Here's my portion of everything - Chicken slider, mac & cheese, deep fried chicken strip, grilled beef, pickles, biscuit.
I don't know how my body adjusted to this heavy meal. It was 8am M'sian time (so, that's breakfast if based on my biological clock).
Panama time is 13 hours behind, so their night time is our daytime.
Here goes our dinner date in 'our' apartment (new tenant & ex-tenant)
After then, he went back to his place (some 4km away) and i was left to settle myself.
Here's some snapshot of the apartment. It has 2 bedrooms, 1 storeroom and 2 bathrooms, somewhere around 1200sqft, and the rental is about USD1900 per month.
The owner tastefully decorate the place with nice leather sofa set, marble table and fancy lamps. It has a 60 inch TV too!
here's another view taken from a different angle:
The bedroom with queen size bed
Toilet with shower
I will post more pictures (took during the daytime) in my later post....

Wednesday, June 14, 2023

KLM Flight: KUL - AMS - PTY

A week after the SG trip, I was being sent off to Panama. The flight ticket costs GBP2602 (equivalent to MYR14888.20).
It was booked by my supervisor who is based in the UK, hence the price in pound. I was so reluctant to do it coz the cost would burst my credit card limit. Because of such pricey ticket, I felt the 'pressure' of going there coz they would expect me to 'deliver up to the expectation'.
But, that's another story.
Now, foodie pictures first....
The flight to Panama City includes a stop at Schipol airport at Amsterdam.
The KLM flight serves 2 meals during my 12 hours journey to AMS.
KUL - AMS
First meal: Chicken curry, biryani rice with acar
and mango salad, cakes, bun.
This meal is prepared by Brahims caterer in Malaysia, hence the local tastes.
Second meal: Egg omelette, sausage, potato wedges
and fruits, yogurt.
in between the 2 main meals, they also served buns.
[Below] The view when approaching Schipol airport - greeneries of the countryside Netherlands.
The Schipol airport is the hub for KLM.
Nice weather in the morning. My connecting flight is 5 hours away. So, time for 'lepak' around the transit area.
Schipol airport isn't that huge and fancy as compared to Changi, hence nothing to shout about.
But one thing for sure, despite not a fancy one, it is well-maintained, the signboards are clear & direct and the toilets are clean, which are essentials for travelers. 
Yes, I see people drinking water from the tap (in the toilet).

AMS - PTY
First meal: Brocolli, mashed potatoes, chicken cubes
and side condiments such as olives, unknown pickles stuffed with cream cheese (i think), unknown minced fish (not sure, but it's slightly spicy), bun.
in between meals, i was served with stroopwafel (yes! my fav) and also a chicken ham sandwich.
Second meal: Pizza bun, macaroni salad, mousse
In total, the journey from KL to Panama City took around 28 hours++, including 5 hours layover in Amsterdam.
Overall, KLM foods are nice (not overly seasoned like Emirates).
Toilets are clean despite a full flight on both journeys.
It was a pleasant experience.

Monday, June 12, 2023

Royz et Vous @ Telok Ayer St, Singapore

On my final day at SG office, the boss offered to take us (me and another colleague) out for lunch.
We headed to a nearby restaurant, Royz et Vous which is within a walking distant from the office.
This place is a popular choice for corporate events and is halal.
I ordered a lychee tea which came out in a fancy presentation😂
Their smoked duck is one of the recommended item. It was excellent. Tender & succulent duck breast meat with perfect ratio of fats and lean meat. It was served with roasted potatoes & carrots, and salad.
Definitely a good place to dine. Superb food, ambience and service. Highly recommended.
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[Below] The sunset view while waiting at the boarding gate at Terminal 4.
Changi airport is as impressive as always. Spacious waiting area, automated check-in, clear signboards, clean toilets and efficient airport staffs. The airport is not just fancy but also well maintained. Thumbs up!
My flight got delayed for an hour plus, so I headed to the 'International Food Hall' to have an early dinner. The food is just ordinary, coz it's foodcourt standard and kinda overpriced (airport-mah!)
Till then, bye bye SG and see u again in a few months time😉

Catedral Basilica Santa Maria La Antigua, Casco Viejo, Panama City

Construction for this church, also known as the 'Sacred Heart Cathedral', began in 1688. It is a Roman Catholic Church. The facade r...