W Taipei’s Little sister – Aloft Taipei ZhongShan 台北中山雅樂軒

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Aloft Taipei Zhongshan 台北中山雅樂軒酒店

No 1 Shuangcheng Street, Zhongshan District, Taipei 台北市中山區雙城街1號

886 2 7743 9999

http://www.alofttaipeizhongshan.com/

Starwood has been working very hard to claim their territory in Taiwan, flagging two new places before we said good bye to 2015.

The hipster W claiming the CBD and now brought in the younger sister Aloft which situated on the other side of Taipei city.  Aloft located in one of the shopping and cafe hopping area, which is an ideal location for some younger travelers, and an alternative to the Four Points by Sheraton which is located far from city center.

Aloft doesn’t have a glamorous lobby likes others, a tiny weeny lobby with just a check-in area and nothing else, and using LEDs displays as decorations.  Upon arriving at the hotel I was greeted by name,  an agent from Four Points who still recognize me from 2 years ago. The checkin process took longer than usual, but very informative and immediate recognizing my SPG status.  Platinum member gets a free drink from W XYZ while their opening special offers free buffet breakfast from Re:fuel.  How chic kiddo roll, we “grab and go” from Re:fuel and partying with the latest music and DJ at W XYZ.
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The modern styled room ain’t huge but it had everything needed.  When we mentioned that the paint smell was a bit strong in the room, they bought in an air purifier as soon as possible.  As a vision of W, Aloft offers Bliss amenities but a different line of product – Tired+Blue.  We did find that the bathtub was a little bit too shallow to our comfort and the air circulation of the the bathroom wasn’t that good.

The light switches panel was a memory game and trial and error.  No labeling or what so ever, it will take you a good 5 minutes to turn on your headlight or switch off the lights at night.

 

Our room had a balcony but we weren’t able to open the door, but we forgotten to ask about it upon check out.
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Aloft is very convenient with MRT station and bus stops just 5 mins away, not to mention the famous Qingguang Market  down the block.  I personally recommend this market to all my friends over the infamous Shilin Night Market, in QingGuang you can find alot of traditional local eats like the tofu dessert, taiwanese style sandwiches, sesame chicken soup, LuWei, doughnut, wheelcake.  I am sure you will have a lots of fun exploring the area.

 

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What can I say ?? I LOVE YOU.. Muahhh – W Hong Kong

W Hong Kong - W 香港

1 Austin Road West, Kowloon Station, Kowloon, Hong Kong

(+852) 3717 2222

http://www.starwoodhotels.com/whotel

Stayed at W Hong Kong for my birthday weekend, and I was spoiled !!!

Upon my arrival at the hotel, I was greeted with a warm welcome and birthday wishes.  You guys made my day.

Long story short, clumsy me dropped my beloved iPhone down to the rail of the Airport express train and didn’t realize it until I was on the train.  I contacted MTR staff they said they can only get it when it’s home time for the trains. NOOOOO was my answer, I landed on the soil like 1 hr ago and u tell me I am gonna be phoneless for the rest of the day? I was whining to my friend, who works at W Hong Kong, and their SPG specialist and whatever whenever staff heard me and helped.  They managed to get my phone back within 1 hr.  Hands down Whatever Whenever!!

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^W Space x I.T

Highlight of the whole trip was my Wowvelous  surprise birthday party, from my dearest friends to all the staff @ W Hong Kong seems like everyone knew abut my party, I thank you all from the bottom of my heart!!! I had a fabulous time and I love you all.Preparing a surprise party wasn’t an easy task all these emails going back and forth, even the general manager wanna meet me I think she was gonna meet upon check-in but I got carry away with my phone.

I was upgraded to the Fantastic Suite just like last time, a room that was spacious enough for me as I wasn’t expecting myself to spend much time in it LOL I ended up in the room for my entire trip.

After checked-in I quickly freshen up and prepared for day number 1 of my busy schedule. While I was in my room, I had different welcome staff called and asked me random questions for the entire time and I was like humph.. I am very busy.  Later on, I found out that it was my friends wanting to decorate my room so they gotta make sure that I am not in.

When I returned to W after dinner my room was filled with my beloved friends, helium balloons, Hello Kitties, my latest love Moët Rosé Impérial, presents and cake.

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Party rock is in the house tonight
Everybody just have a good time

Party till late and I was up at 9:30 for the all-you-can-eat dimsum at SingYin for breakie, went up to Wet for a walk.  It would be perfect if the sky was blue 🙂

Later on, I had another family party and this time W Hong Kong prepared a slice of cake and some pressie for my little cousin who shares the same b’day with me. Thanks W insider and Welcome team.

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On my actual birthday, whenever and wherever I went everyone wished me “Happy birthday!”.  I had breakfast with my best friend, and followed by a lovely lunch with the W Insider.  She told me all about my surprise party and how frustrated she was when I cancelled my Bliss spa appointment, keep changing the name of my guest, being bitchy towards the party organizer since she was safeguarding my privacy and her little trick on sending me a personal email asking about my stay.  Wahahaha I am sorry Bliss spa and SPG service center if the W Insider was giving you a hard time.

Girl, you always makes me laugh, and LOL I will send you some 無老鍋 next time.  Time flies when you were having a nice long girls talk, and that concluded my stay @ W Hong Kong.

I am so gonna make it to Bliss Spa for my next stay and keep rocking, W Hong Kong

Love y’all xxx

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Moon festival, Mooncakes, BBQ – W Taipei

 w Taipei mooncake - W飯店月餅

^photo’s courtesy: W Taipei Facebook

W Taipei

10 Zhongxiao East Road Sec. 5, Xinyi District  信義區忠孝東路5段10號

02 7703 8888

Ordered these Rotation Temptation for my peepz in Hong Kong while they post me my all time favorite from Spring Moon @ Penninsula Hong Kong.  I was one box off when I posted them out, made a call to the hotel and was told that they were sold out.  Luckily, the W insider managed to get me one, phew~~~ Friends make sure that you enjoy them, they are hard to get.

I am impressed with W Taipei’s idea of making use of the best talents in Taiwan.  The one of a kind mooncake box is designed by Miniwiz ( Minimize your carbon footprint).  An energetic team whose goal is to turn trash into products, so as you can see the mooncake box is made out of recycled materials. Thumbs up, W Taipei and the team.  To do our parts, we should recycle the boxes after we consume the mooncakes.

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Fruity Temptation Mooncakes is another invention after last year’s Shake and Share with the innovative cocktail flavors. There were 5 flavors last year and the Espresso Martini & Japanese Chestnut was my favorite.  This year’s Tropical Fruity Temptations has 3 flavors No.18 Taiwan Ruby Black Tea Yu-Jing Mango Cake (台茶18玉井芒果酥), Valrhona P125 Coeur de Guanaja Zhong-Liao Banana Cake (P125法芙娜巧克力中寮香蕉蛋糕) and Honey Scented Black Tea Guan-Miau Pineapple cake(蜜香紅茶關廟鳳梨酥)

This year they mixed and matched some of the local fruits with the tea and chocolate, I admitted even though they only have three flavors this year, but all three of them seems very tempting. The Mango one was quite buttery, it was like an enlarged version of pineapple cake with mango fillings. The mango taste wasn’t that strong but the after taste of the tea did surprise me.  This is a good companion for your afternoon cuppa.  Yet to try the other flavors!

Overall, my friends had given positive feedbacks on it, and now mooncake is no longer lotus seed paste and egg yolks 🙂

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^photo’s courtesy: W Taipei Facebook

Wow!!! What a speechless stay – Marvelous suite @ W Taipei Part II

Marvelous suite Part I (click here)

My love for the “W” brand started here and it ends here. I was sick and tired to notify the management team everyday what surprises my room had given me.

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Day 2

I was greeted by the W insider and their Director of Rooms at Woo Bar while i had my breakfast, we had a long talk.  When I returned to my room that day the sinks were sparkling clean, a tea set from Yen was waiting in the lounge and a huge Gummy Bear arrangement on my bed. I do prefer the salami and cheese plate more than this tea set, anyhow thanks for the compensation for our missing welcome plate.

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Day 3

Typhoon hit Taipei so everyone stayed in the hotel.  We headed down to Kitchen Table for our breakfast, and there were queues everywhere.  Queue waited to be seated, queue for  food, queue for egg station and queue for people complaining why they needed to sit over at Woo Bar.  It was obvious that they don’t have enough staff to handle the guests they have in the restaurant.  Jams and spread area was empty when I was hoping to have a Nutella toast.  I stood in front of the french toast tray for 10 mins just to get someone to refill the maple syrup, and I ended up telling one of the waiter that I want some syrup but couldn’t manage to get the chef’s attention.  In addition, a big mixed up for my aunt’s mushroom and chives omelette, it came in as a mushroom eggroll.  They offered to make her another, and she ended up with a mushroom, chives and ham omelette.  I don’t really understand this at all, they had a waitress stood there for order taking and all she had to do was to tick off the ingredients and put the table number on.

Food wise, I still love their ice-cream and their large selection of veggie.  Since I had only had the Sunday brunch at W Hong Kong, it wasn’t fair to do a direct comparison.  My uncle and auntie highly recommended their noodles bar while my little cousin loved their steam egg. I was surprise by the way they make their hot chocolate, basically it is Toblerone and hot milk nom nom 🙂

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Since it was typhoon day, my uncle headed back to Le Meridien while we went back to our room.  We were surprise to see a stylist was styling our room, I told him in Chinese that could he come back later to finish it off , since we will head over to LM in the afternoon.  “I only have to do the towels then it’s done, don’t need to come back in the afternoon.”  I let him put in fresh towels and later on I found out he didn’t refill my coffee capsules, no new towels for the guest bathroom, didn’t refill the cotton balls and makeup remover and he put a set of small travel size Bliss amenities but not the big bottles for suites, on top of that I want a new set of bed linens too. He claimed that he finished with it, the new part-time talents W employs all have an attitude.

I was running a temperature that afternoon and instead of staying at LM, I decided to head back to W and ask them to style my room again while I had a nap on the sofa, this time they had a team of 4-5 stylists to style my room and the finish product was what I call a clean.  When I woke up, I found a leak by the window and though it might not be serious so I gave it a wipe.  30 mins later, it was a big puddle again so I gave W insider a call and have her to come look at it and immediately she offered to block another suite for me incase they couldn’t fix it.  I said no to the move as I had all my stuff out and it would be hard to move everything.

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Day 4

I was out the entire day, and once I went back to the hotel their Welcome AM said he had been waiting for me for the entire day , coz he was the one I contacted a month earlier telling him what I want for my room and everything.  He helped me alot during my pervious stays and he knows me well, basically he explained everything to me.  Once he learned that I was late for the dinner reservation and my two little cousins were still napping in the room, he offered us dinner @ Yen.  He got us a table, ordered the food and made sure everything were smooth, in the mean time, he popped up to Yen from time to time.  This was the only time that my uncle wan’t complaining but complimented on the Peaking Roast Duck.  The entire dinner was nice and pleasant with a team of proactive staff, even though we were asked “Is everything OK? ” for more than 10 times throughout the dinner, this was why I used to like W Taipei as everyone was so helpful and friendly.

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After dinner at Yen everyone was in a good mood.  Unfortunately, when we went back to our room we found that the new duvet cover was torn.  A five stars hotel suite and they gave us an old and ragged duvet cover??? Are they that short of money???

W Taipei

Day 5

Our last day at the hotel, I was hoping for a good day since the sun was out.  The Kitchen Table was way quieter than the typhoon day, food trays were all full and the table side snacks were back.  Everything were impressive before the incident with my omelette, I ordered it when I arrived.  I waited and waited until my aunt and uncle’s eggs arrived and they ordered after me (around 15mins) , but still no sign of mine.  When I asked the waitress she said they were making mine.  10mins later, she came back and said “I just want to confirm what filling did you order?” Comeon, if you were making mine then why you come and confirm my order 10 mins later, and why couldn’t you just admit that you sent it to the wrong person or you didn’t make mine.  Just when my egg arrived, the air con above me started to drip, what a good way to start my day.

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We had a swim while Mister Sun was out.  Just a few hours before checkout, we had thunderstorm in Taipei and our room was leaking again!!!!

I called the Welcome AM and he came up personally to have a look.  He said he was very sorry and speechless with my room’s condition.  He wasn’t as bubbly as the day before and I could feel that he didn’t know what to do to, and he did want me to walk out the door happily.  When I told W insider about the leak and my duvet cover, she said “I am speechless.”

What an unbelievable stay!!! My all time favorite becomes the least favorable on the list, even though they were still mentioning that I should have my birthday at W Taipei they will make it as memorable as last time.  Sorry, W Taipei I will make a pass this year, and it will be a surprise me W Hong Kong .

W Taipei


W Taipei Overview ( click here )

My wonderful stay at W Taipei Wonderful room ( click here )

My not so marvelous stay Part I (click here)

Want to know about other W’s

W Hong Kong’s surprised birthday party (click here)

Fantastic suite – W Hong Kong (click here)

W Walkerhill Seoul (click here )

Marvelous Suite is not too marvelous after all – W Taipei Marvelous suite Part I

Marvelous suite - W Taipei Marvelous suite - W Taipei

W Taipei

10 Zhongxiao East Road Sec. 5, Xinyi District  信義區忠孝東路5段10號

02 7703 8888

I stayed at W Taipei for twice in the same week.  Haven’t been to W Taipei for a long time, and it was good to be back once in a while.

This suite is around 90 sqm and it was nice and spacious, should be enough for a party around 10 people.  The Marvelous suite is similar to the fantastic suite @ W Hong Kong (click here) .   The first stay was pleasant and enjoyable while the second stay started with a terrible check-in, three more nights to go hopefully it will get better.  It might be the fact that I was checked in by one of the more experienced Welcome staff for the first stay, she even gave us a call when the room was ready.  On the other hand, I was staying with my little cousin so I asked for a suite upgrade once I made the reservation (I don’t usually ask for a suite upgrade, but I want my little cousin to have more space to run around, so I asked for one this time and FAILED).  Worst case scenario, we weren’t even upgraded to Marvelous but only the Fabulous ROOM that we paid for,  fine I was gonna said ok to the Fabulous!! Almost all of the experienced welcome talents know that I am very particular with my hotel room, I like my room up on 30th floor facing the DaZhi and Neihu, but this time the put me on 27th floor. At the end, they managed to come up with a Marvelous suite on 15th floor, not impressed but better than nothing.  Why in the first place we were told that all the suites were sold out??

The room itself was great but it was just the services from their  staff , and with my recent stay @ W Hong Kong where it had great recognition for Platinum members with their SPG specialist.  W Taipei is miles behind on this.  The welcome agent for my first stay asked what do I want for my welcome gift, on the other hand, for my second stay he didn’t even mention about welcome gift. When I made a call down to Whatever/Whenever stating that I want breakfast for the welcome gift, they questioned didn’t I choose it upon check-in. 

The welcome agent for my second check-in even asked me a very stupid question, “So you prefer speaking English rather than Chinese? ” when I spoke to him in English at all time.  Can’t you just provide the 5 Stars services and stop worrying what language I speak. He had passed his probation since he was wearing a silver W pin not a purple one.  

Let’s talk about the room, greeted by the W Dragon at the door along with a guest bathroom, they use the Panasonic toilet here where in W Hong Kong they use ToTo

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followed by the spacious lounge with a LG TV not even one piece of B&O is spotted in this room. For my second stay I didn’t even get my welcome plate of salami and cheese, not even a sight of the tiny bag of Tiny Gummy Bears.  Compare to W Hong Kong, Singapore, Guangzhou, Paris and Sheraton Macao‘s welcome plates came with a warmest greeting card.

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credited to the the W Signature bed, I had  very good sleeps thru out my first stay, hopefully it will be the same for my current one.

One and only one thing that W Taipei beats the others is it’s view from the bath tub. But the sinks on my second stay not even cleaned probably and they were stained. 

I took all the pictures during my first stay except for the closeups on the stained sinks

Bad things come in threes, Part II of my horrible stay (click here)

 

Marvelous suite - W Taipei Marvelous suite - W Taipei Marvelous suite - W Taipei Marvelous suite - W Taipei Marvelous suite - W Taipei ^sparkling clean sinks for my 1st stayMarvelous suite - W Taipei Marvelous suite - W Taipei Marvelous suite - W Taipei Marvelous suite - W Taipei Marvelous suite - W Taipei W Taipei - Marvelous suite W Taipei - Marvelous Suite^sinks from my 2nd stay

 

 

 

Marvelous suite - W Taipei Marvelous suite - W Taipei Marvelous suite - W Taipei Marvelous suite - W Taipei Marvelous suite - W Taipei Don’t forget to like my post and follow me on Facebook (link) and Instagram (link)

W Taipei Overview ( click here )

My wonderful stay at W Taipei Wonderful room ( click here )

My not so marvelous stay Part II (click here)

Want to know about other W’s

W Hong Kong’s surprised birthday party (click here)

Fantastic suite – W Hong Kong (click here)

W Walkerhill Seoul (click here )

 

The Glamorous Fantastic Suite – W Hong Kong

W Hong Kong W香港1 Austin Road West, Kowloon Station, Kowloon, Hong Kong

(+852) 3717 2222

http://www.starwoodhotels.com/whotel

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W is one of the fastest developed hotel chain in Asia two years ago with only W Walkerhill, W Hong Kong, W Taipei, W Bali, W Koh Samui and W Maldives, now the big family have a few new comers W Singapore, W Bangkok and W Guangzhou. << GZ  n Singapore delayed their openings so I missed out on my trip there, ended up staying at Westin Guangzhou. I wish I can stay there very soon.

W Hong Kong created lots of talking points and everyone raved about this hotel when it first opened.  The hotel is in  Elements (shopping mall) and on the same site with their new competitor Ritz Carlton which is the tallest hotel in Hong Kong.  W is easily assess to by Airport Express and if you have lots of luggages don’t forget to ask for the greeting service at the station.  W located in Jordan area with is the neighbor of the shopping hub – Tsim Sha Tsui and W provides shuttle bus services to the major shopping malls in TST.

W provides refreshment drinks and fruits, I still find it funny to have “W” stickers on my Granny Smith “An apple a day for your W stay”

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The common area in W Hong Kong was designed By Fabio Ongarato Design Team from Australia using a lot of modern technology and abstract artworks.  I realized that some of the status or art displays are actually different from my last stay. The Welcome desk was located in the middle of Kitchen and Woo bar (ex Living Room) and the SPG desk was in front of Woo Bar.  W Hong Kong had an special service called SPG specialist which is an unique service to the SPG guests.

Upon my arrival on the 6th floor I met the W insider from Taipei she is now working for W Hong Kong had a long talk with her then she introduced me to the new service SPG specialist.  For my stay that night I was upgraded to Fantastic Suite  2601.

The evaluator area in W was decorated as a library, it was kinda irony to how Hong Kong people only read magazine and travel guides.  The room number here was displayed on a book, I want one for my home too.

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The Design team in G+A used black and yellow for the wall in the glamorous fantastic suite. The suite was about 65 square meters wasn’t really that big compare to other suites in the hotel chain but since it’s Hong Kong every minimeter worth a bucket of gold. The lounge had a 6 seater with a stunning harbor view of the Yau Ma Tei Typhoon Shelter side of Victoria harbor.  I enjoyed my welcome fruits there, a nice view of the polluted Hong Kong.  W Hong Kong W香港 W Hong Kong W香港 W Hong Kong W香港 W Hong Kong W香港 W Hong Kong W香港 W Hong Kong W香港They used B&O, Bose and a 52″ LCD TV  in the room alongside with a DVD player and ipod dock to play your favorite music. Just like the others they have Nespresso in room for you to use came with 4 different capsules.  It had this cute little bamboo dim sum container from Sing Yin.

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The tiny work tabel had all the stationeries you need, this was the first hotel that I came across with provided highlighers, rubber bands, cellotape and stabler.  Thanks W Hong Kong for paying attentions to the details.  Needless to say that, I was happy to see the WISH kaleidoscope in my room, I love it so much but my sister said no when I wanted to buy it in W Walkerhill.

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The bedroom used the B&O system.  The King size W singnature bed with the pillow top mattress did the trick. I was snoring away didn’t even noticed that my friend woke up and went for work.  It had a tiny wardrobe which was abit too small for a suite, in there were the bathrobe, extra pillows, iron, slippers, safe.

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The bathroom was big and with all the things you needed.  The bathtub and the shower were in the same cubicle, you could indulge yourself with a nice bubble while you watched you favorite drama on the 20″ tv. W provided you the bath salt and a Scrub-A-W-Dub; the Bliss products in suite are in 120 ml bottles.

I was pleased with the room overall and was good to see some old friends.

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The handle of the bathroom door was abit loose, as a top notch hotel W should had paid attentions to the hardware too.

I wanted to extend my stay when I checked out,  but it was well passed the 24hrs room guarantee for SPG platinum member and the hotel was fully booked, so no luck in extending.  AND AND AND

I didn’t get to go for my favorite Bliss Spa since it was fully booked for the four days I was in town, Oh it had been 2 years since I last set my foot in a Bliss Spa.

I can’t wait till my W Taipei stay 🙂

 

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Time to leave Hong Kong – W Hong Kong Sunday Brunch


w hong kong brunch w hong kong brunchKitchen @ W Hong Kong

http://www.w-hongkong.com/

(+852) 37172222

Adult : $588 / $698 for free flow champagne

3 hrs complimentary parking

Still remembered when W first came to Hong Kong, there were so much rave about their free flow champagne Sunday Brunch.  Well, after 5 years .. YEA it’s W’s fifth b’day this year.

I got to Brunch it up!!

The Kitchen was located at the 6th floor and once you get ouf of the elevator  turned right your will be greeted by this creature – A white peacock ( if I have it right)

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The Kitchen was nicely decorated and with the panoramic view of the South China Sea made your Sunday morning most relaxing and layback. A thumbs up escaped if you can’t afford a trip abroad.

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The brunch started from noon to 3:00, we ended up staying there till 4:00.  The waiters were acutally very nice and they didn’t rush you out once it was over.  In addition, they were very quick and promted in terms of refilling your glass, collecting your plates and extra detail minded when it came to children.  They offered high chairs and childen cutleries for toddlers and the number of children in the restaurant were overwhelming.

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Like Kitchen Table – W Taipei they had a great selection on freshly squeezed juices: orange, apple, grapefruit, pineapple, mango… you name it, most surprisingly that they had Guava juice – A taste of taiwan when I was on holiday.

I loved their yoghurt it went well with the fresh raspberry and the berries sauce, reminded me of NZ diary products.

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Kitchen @ W hong Kong was known for its fine selection on hams and cheeses, for their brunch there were Serrano and Prosciutto alongside with other cold cuts.  The foie gras & berries garden tasted interesting, that was my first time having foie gras with berry gelo and berries sauce.

w hong kong brunch w hong kong brunchI was abit disappointed by their Wagyu mini burger and the egg benedict.

Wagyu mini burger – beef patty was hard and well done unlike the usually juicy and tender patty that you get fromt the burger shop.

Egg Benedict – like most of the egg benedict in Hong Kong this was a hard boiled egg with cheesey sauce.

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They had a big selection on dessert too, from ice cream and cakes to popcorn!!! YES popcorn, they had a popcorn n hot dog section, may b it’s for movie after brunch ???

The chocolate display was quite impressive and you saw people dig in the display trying to find the chocolate that they like. I wished that they have the jumping candy chocolate here, I had it for my birthday two years back and I could never forget it.

They had Haagen-dazs ice cream here and I did prefer having the W made gelato.

The tiramisu in the pot was an other highlight, I had this a few years back in Season – Taipei and that was an ice cream with chocolate crumbs.  This one here was a tiramisu mainly with the mascarpone cheese and could hardly taste the coffee.

Now I want to try out the Sunday Bubblisimo @ W taipei 

Until next time Hong Kong, I will miss you!

 

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w hong kong brunch

Yum Cha with Family – Sing Yin @ W Hong Kong

Sing Yin 星宴

Sing Yin

1/F W Hotel, 1 Austin Road West, TST

(+852) 37172848

 

During my 4 days trip to Hong Kong, I managed to have Yum Cha with my dear family.  We have chosen W Hong Kong,  it’s hard to believe that the Chic hotel has a dim sum restaurant.  Sing Yen is the first dim sum restaurant in the W chain, the restaurant didn’t fail W’s modern and hip attitude.  Black marbled floor, the city street scene of Hong Kong, LCD fish tank along with the unique Chinese art pieces, that’s W.

Sing Yen not only provides A – la – carte menu as well as the dim sum buffet on the weekends. Not wanting to have the dim sum buffet, I double checked with the whatever / whenever agent when I made the reservation.  When we arrived the restaurant I was told that my reservation was made under the Kitchen instead of Sing Yen!  The wait staff told us that it was quite full that day she would try to accommodate us.  I was sure that I asked for Sing Yen when I made reservation and I mentioned about the Dim Sum buffet, how could he made it for Kitchen?

Not long after we managed to get our table and it was closed to the washroom as I had my grandmother with me that would be convenient for her.

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The menu was designed by Chef Bryan Lee and promoted a health yum cha style with less oil, salt and sugar.  Chef Lee was famous for his fusion cuisine along with his 30+ years of experiences all over China, he provided W – Sing Yin with an one an only menu.

Sing Yin 星宴 Sing Yin 星宴

 

Sin Yin provided their signature XO sauce (HKD $180 / bottle) and a small plate of chilled beef cubes. The beef cubes were cooked with a special soy sauce and you couldn’t help to have one after one.

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The BBQ kurobuta pork had became my favorite, out beaten the BBQ pork from Lei Garden.  The pork was tender and juicy, at the same time it wasn’t overly sweet or fat, everything was just right.

The poached bean curd skin rolls with shredder pork in spotted garoupa soup (HKD $56/3pcs) was surprisingly yummilicious  the soup had a very rich flavor to it with gave extra points to the bean curd rolls.

The Signature shrimp dumplings (HKD $56/3pcs) was just average but you could tell that they used fresh ingredients in the food.  For this I still prefer The Square’s, their shrimp dumplings were still the best out of all the ones I had.

Like other hotel restaurants you can actually order your dim sum in pieces so that’s way more convenient as you can order just right for your party.

The highlight of the meal was the dessert plate, a complimentary from the Assistant manger for the mess up with our reservation.

Mango glutinous roll, sweet walnut soup and a pastry with perserved egg.  I loved the mango roll which was the perfect combination just like my favorite one from Lucky dessert at Sham Tseng.

For SPG members out there, when you dine at Sing Yin remember to show your card to get 15% discount.  Wish that next time when i’m in town, I get to stay @ W and try out their dim sum buffet.

Sing Yin 星宴 Sing Yin 星宴

 

 

 

 

Dinner with a spectacular view – Yen from W Taipei 紫艷中餐廳

W Taipei - Yen W Taipei Yen

Yen  – W Taipei 紫艷中餐廳

31/F 10 Zhongxiao East Road Sec. 5, Xinyi District

台北市信義區忠孝東路五段10號31樓

(02)7703-8888

Had dinner here with my friend’s mom, I dined at the kitchen table quite often but this was the first time at Yen – the Chinese restaurant. It is located up on the 31st floor of the hotel over looking Taipei city.  Thanks for the help of the A.M. we got a window side table and we could enjoy the night view with our Fusion Chinese dishes.

Yen’s menu was designed by one of the pioneer chef of blending the classic and modern chinese dishes –  Jereme Leung from Singapore, he was awarded the Five Star Diamond Award from The American Academy of Hospitality Science in both 2000 and 2008.

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W Taipei Yen

We had Edamame as one of the cold dishes on the the W decorated plate, they mixed it with olive oil and some pepper and spices, which gave the edamame a hint of spice to its’ original flavor.

We also ordered the cool drunken chicken with shao xing wine jello $420, the chicken itself was tender and yet juicy but I was overwhelmed with shao xing wine jello, having it with the chicken it actually bought out the flavor of the chicken.  A great combination indeed.

The vinegar-cured jellyfish and black fungus salad $ 380.00 we ordered was just a normal cold appertizer you would get in a Chinese restaurant compared to the drunken chicken this was nothing special.

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For mains we had my favorite honey-glazed barbeque pork neck$ 480.00 but compared it to the BBQ pork that you get from HK, it was nothing like those.  For me I love the traditional bbq pork that you get from the local stores in hk.  Although Yen used pork neck the muscled  and full of flavor cut of meat, which was nom but not something that I would go back and reorder.  Needless to say that it came with a candlelit grill which kept the meat warm while it was on the table

steamed giant garoupa, star fruit, house special sauce$ 480.00 this came with a single portion which was perfect for us since that one of us doesn’t eat fish.  I had never had cooked starfood and the giant garoupa combination left me speechless.

sautéed cabbage, black fungus, celery, sakura shrimp flakes$ 380.00, this was just a normal dish that you will get in a chinese restaurant not really fascinating about it.

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Dessert time  –

I was drooling for their famous egg tart since I had it from room service long long time ago, it was hard to find a decent egg tart in Taiwan but Yen had it just right. In addition, the custard bun with salty yolks, not to care about the calories in this dish…yummylicious.  This runny custard bun is my all time favorite when I go to YumCha, in my perspective as long as it’s runny then it’s divine.

W Taipei Yen W Taipei Yen

I would definitely recommend this restaurant if you do have an important date or you want to eat with Taipei under your feet.  The price is a little bit pricey but if you take the services and view into account, its worth what you are paying.

 

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Not even a three stars hotel!

Le Méridien Hong Kong 數碼港艾美酒店

Le Méridien Hong Kong 數碼港艾美酒店

100 Cyberport Road, Hong Kong 香港數碼港道100號

+852 2980 7788

The worst stay at a 5 stars hotel ever, even the cheaper brands in Starwood are way better than this so call 5 stars less than 10 years hotel.

I stayed there for a night and since that my best friend live at BelAir and Le Meridien is just 5 mins away I choose to stay here rather than my usual W Hong Kong.  Unlike Le Meridien which adopted a simplistic design HK Le Meridien has this colourful lighting on their check in counters.  I paid extremely expensive rate on this hotel at the very night I stayed $3100 + 15% HKD, for this price I can stay at W hong Kong or Sheraton Hong Kong why needed to stay at this isolated hotel.  Oh well, may be not so isolated, it is located about 20 mins taxi ride from central and the hotel does provide a shuttle bus.  The first oops by the hotel was that I noticed that the sofa had trash on it and the newspaper were not neatly stacked when I walked to the waiting area of the hotel before check-in. 2nd Oops. I was told that the hotel was fully booked and I got allocated a room on the 6th floor and it is a corner room even though I emailed the hotel beforehand that I do wish to have a quiet room near the elevator.  3rd Oops Am a SPG platinum guest and had always request for a higher floor and I was told that the two SPG floors are all occupied by their platinum guests, WOW  a lot of their platinum guests like this hotel and occupied TWO floors.  4th Oops, I carried a heavy bag with me and none of the day dreaming staff offered to help with the bag, they were standing there doing absolutely nothing.Le Méridien Hong Kong 數碼港艾美酒店 Le Méridien Hong Kong 數碼港艾美酒店 Le Méridien Hong Kong 數碼港艾美酒店 Le Méridien Hong Kong 數碼港艾美酒店 Le Méridien Hong Kong 數碼港艾美酒店

5th Oops, had never walked in one of the hotel corridor that was this stuffy before, I guess they were trying to save their electricity bill on air conditioner, then why charge me $3100HKD for a room.  Not even a four points by sheraton standard.

Le Méridien Hong Kong 數碼港艾美酒店

the star indicated my NEAR the Elevator room which is the end of that particular corridor, I hated to stay at the corner room except for W hotel’s Cool corner room.

the room does have nice view overlooking the south china sea

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I don’t really understand this art piece why did it has to cover part of the mirror and it looks weird to hang it in this position.

Le Méridien Hong Kong 數碼港艾美酒店 Le Méridien Hong Kong 數碼港艾美酒店 Le Méridien Hong Kong 數碼港艾美酒店 Le Méridien Hong Kong 數碼港艾美酒店 Le Méridien Hong Kong 數碼港艾美酒店 Le Méridien Hong Kong 數碼港艾美酒店 Le Méridien Hong Kong 數碼港艾美酒店

They don’t use the heavenly bed from Westin, sweet sleeper from Sheraton nor W signature mattress, my cousin had backache resulted from the night sleep at Le Meridien.

I vaguely remembered that the hotel wasn’t really that old but it has visible aged evidence, so I doubled checked with the front desk and they claimed that the hotel is around 8 years old and they had recently refurnished.  The room had a bump in the carpet near the door and a visible crack in the shower, and you tell me it has just been refurnished.

Le Méridien Hong Kong 數碼港艾美酒店 Le Méridien Hong Kong 數碼港艾美酒店

after an hour I went back down to the lobby to wait for my best friend to join me for dinner at the hotel.  Looking at the sofa and table at the waiting area the newspaper and the trash  were still there, no one had attempted to clean it up during the hour.  We went to the japanese restaurant as the chinese restaurant was closed as it had a wedding banquet and we could go to the bar with my friend’s baby.  We were told that the restaurant was fully booked and there weren’t tables for in-house guests either then we were asked to sit at the bar area with my friend’s one year old son.  after we refused they suggested that we sat outdoor and they offered us insect repellent, LOL this was the first time a hotel offer their guest insect repellent instead of lighting up repellent candles.  At the end of the day, my friend’s one year old son got bitten all over him. downside of sitting outdoor is that it took you a long time to try to get a waiter to attention as they were not as attentive as expected.  Last Oops from the hotel was that they have smoking levels and I do seriously think that they did not clean their air circulation system regularly.  Whenever I get back into my room I started sneezing and my nose was all blocked up to solve this I actually have to have this noisy air purifier plugged in for the whole night.  I think this was the first and ever hotel which gave me nose allergy with my stay in the room.  I didn’t sleep the whole night as I just couldn’t stop sneezing even with the air purify, it just managed to ease it a little bit but not cure it.  I don’t really understand why on earth would i pay $400 USD to get myself suffered for the night and the staff didn’t really help.

Le Méridien Hong Kong 數碼港艾美酒店

Do NOT go to this hotel, it doesn’t even worth $700 HKD / $90 USD, I am truly disappointed in the Le Meridien brand even some of the Starwood Category 1 hotels like Four points by sheraton or Aloft are better than this one.  Their staff didn’t provide up to value services, this was the worst service I get since I have been staying with starwood let alone that I am now a platinum member.