May 30, 2014

Tokyo : Yoyogi Park, Meiji Shrine & Harajuku

Hello! So on Day 1 of Edwin & Lydia's arrival, we headed to Harajuku for the Sunday Dress Up at Yoyogi Park. Crazy amount of people at the Harajuku Train Station. This area seems to be a very popular spot with both tourists and locals. We decided to start with Meiji Shrine before the day gets hotter. 

Yoyogi Park was a little quieter compared to the hustle and bustle of the main streets. But there were still crowds of people heading, like metal drawn to a magnet, towards Meiji Shrine. We started down the pebblestone lined path, enjoying the coolness of the air under the shadows of the huge trees. 

We are not so into shrines and temples but since Meiji Jingu Shrine is one of the most popular shrines in Japan, we decided we had to visit it. We found a quiet, cool spot and spend some time people watching.  We spotted crowds of other tourists making offerings, buying charms and writing out wishes. There were a lot of locals also getting their blessings, having traditional Shinto weddings and some baby dedications. Japanese babies and kids are super adorable!! 

I love this picture. I took this as we left Meiji Shrine and headed back towards Harajuku. The tall trees and gloominess makes it feel like we are in a magical forest, doesn't it? 

Finally, Harajuku!!! Check out all the 'semut-semuts'.. Harajuku is a mix of young, crazily dressed hipsters and excited wide-eyes tourists. We stopped for lunch at a hole in the wall cafe. Cheap, yummy ramen with tempuras. It started drizzling when we came out, so Lydia & I popped into the huge Daiso for some shopping while the guys ogled at some Japanese chicks at McDonald's. We also did try the fame Harajuku crepe which cost quite a bomb but was delicious. 

The day was getting darker as we escaped the Takeshita-dori street and walked down Omotesando towards Shinjuku. We wanted to catch the Shinjuku Street Crossing before it turned darker. I love the walk from Omotesando towards Shinjuku. So many interesting and pretty things to see. If you have the time, MUST do the walk. 

OK. Crazy Shinjuku Crossing photos in the next post :)

May 15, 2014

Itinerary : 6 days in Tokyo & much more

I was in Japan for 10 days last month but out of the 10 days, 6 days were taken up being a tour guide for my twinnie and her husband. It was one of the best trips I had - great food, great company and great country. Here's a summary of what we did - 4 planned days covering Central Tokyo, Old Tokyo, 1 day for Mt. Fuji, and 1 day free & easy. We eventually decided not to visit Mt. Fuji via Hakone due to various reasons. But if you would like to visit Hakone, read about it here

Here's what we did:

Day 0
Arrived at Haneda Airport - Check into Capsule Hotel

Day 1 
(Central Tokyo : Shibuya & Shinjuku)

Day 2
(Central Tokyo : Minato & Chau, Ginza)
Visited Tsukuji Fish Market - Breakfast at the Tsukuji Outer Market - stroll down the glittering street of Ginza - Visited the electronic city of Akihabara

Day 3
(Old Tokyo : Sumida, Taito - Ueno & Asakusa)
Walk to Amiyokocho Market - Had a hanami party under the sakura trees in Ueno Park - Took train to Asakusa : visit Sensoji Temple and walk the Nakamise, Kappabashi, Denkama and Asakubashi Shopping Arcade - Walk to Tokyo Sky Tree and Tokyo Solamachi

Day 4
(Central Tokyo : Imperial Palace & Shinjuku)
Walk to Tokyo station - Breakfast at Ramen Street (lower ground) - Stroll down Manurochi and mingle with corporate people - Had a hanami party under the sakuras at Tokyo Imperial Palace gardens - Took train to Shinjuku : Tokyo Metropolitan Government Building - got lost in the narrow alleys of Shinjuku

Day 5 
(Original plan : Visit Hakone - Mt. Fuji)
(Free & Easy)
Walk to Ameyokocho Market for round 2 of shopping - Stroll in Ueno Park and thrifted at the Uneo Park flea market - Walk to Nezu for amazing ice-cream - Took train to Ginza - stroll up the streets of Ginza

Day 6
(Free & Easy)
Amazing view of Tokyo at the top of Tokyo Tower - took train to Harajuku - Wandered the streets of Omote-sando - Walk to Shibuya - Dinner and final night at Tokyo


My last 2 days after my sister have left were spent at Kamata (outskirts of Tokyo, near the Haneda Airport) and Kawasaki (a large city, south of Tokyo. If you have the time, I would suggest visiting Kawasaki. Pretty interesting shopping arcades, plenty of people to watch and different vibe from Tokyo. You can take a day trip down from Tokyo. 

Cost : 

I do not have my records with me but I believe Rockstar and I spend about RM7000 for 10 days in Tokyo for 2 pax inclusive of everything. Breakdown below

Transportation, Food, Shopping, Souvenirs, etc  - RM3000 for 2 pax

Flight : RM1700 for 2 pax
Hotels : RM2300 for 10 days

* Will update when I can on a more detailed account. 

Trains & Passes :

- Do not get confuse by the Tokyo train lines maze. There are basically 3 main lines : JR Line (covers major area), Tokyo Toei Line (6 lines) & Tokyo Metro (9 lines); and a few private lines. All lines intersect each other. You can switch trains between the lines but bear in mind that cost varies. If you got a JR pass (only for tourist), you can only travel on JR lines. 
- JR Pass. DO NOT get one if you only planned to stay in Tokyo. A JR pass cost RM1200+ for a 7 days pass. I spend about RM300+for the 10 days I was there. Of cos I did walk quite a bit too. Get one only if you planned to travel around Japan, eg. Osaka, Kyoto or further. 
- If you do not have a JR pass, my suggestion would be to get a Suica card (a reload card) which can be reloaded at any stations. Then, you will not have to worry about buying train tickets all the time. Ensure that your card is empty when you return them. If not, there will be charges incurred on top of the deposit refund. 
- Download 'Japan Trains' or goggle to check on fares and exact train times (a life-saver for me)


If you need more info or have questions about Japan, drop me an email at or try to check my other posts on Japan to know more.  I'll try to update this post as soon as I can. 

See ya! :)

May 2, 2014

Amazing Bridal Spa Party @ Vita Spa

*post first appeared on

Next week, a girlfriend will be crossing from singlehood to being married and I couldn't be more happy for her. We celebrate this transition with a girls pampering session and a wild night after :)

When we decided on a pampering session, the next question is "Where?". My first thought was automatically Vita Spa as I have been there a couple of years back for a friend's bridal shower. I contacted them and they very efficiently made the necessary arrangements for us.

I stepped into Vita Spa and was greeted with soothing music and sweet smelling incense. The blue lights gave it a slightly futuristic feel but the flickering candlelight made the atmosphere soothing and cosy at the same time. Slippers were placed in a row for us to slip out of our heels into something comfortable. Everything was laid out, ready, awaiting the arrival of the VIP and her girlfriends.  

Finally, the Bride-to-be arrived and we were given some time to nibble on beautifully laid out fruits while we picked our door gifts. There were whoops of joy as freebies such as OPI nail varnishes and spa treatment vouchers were drawn by each girl. We took some time deciding on which type of aromatherapy oil and scrub we wanted and then it was the pampering session time. No pictures taken during as I myself drifted off in bliss as the skillful masseur worked her magic.  

After an amazing session, we were all feeling gorgeous, relaxed and ready to party the night away at The Social in Publika. Although I might say that the service at The Social wasn't up to par but the crowd gave opportunities for all the 'tasks' we had for the bride-to-be. We were really grateful for all the diners and visitors at Publika who were sporting enough to play along with her ;p I will not post up pictures of what happened that night as what happened there stays between the girls but here's a group picture. 

I had fun and I know that the whole group enjoyed themselves too. 

Not many places cater for big groups who have different requirements but I am thankful that not only did Vita Spa accommodated our group of noisy girls, they did such a great job with our various requests. If you ever need a place to have a bridal party, I would recommend going there. There were 7 of us and we had an average of 2.5-3 hours of treatment each varying from aromatherapy massage, body scrub, body mask, spa manicure or pedicure, gel manicure or pedicure and facial. The bride-to-be had an additional jacuzzi floral bath. The bridal party/bachelorette party package also included door gifts. We each paid only RM180 for treatments that is worth at least RM310-370 and door gifts worth RM50-80. Isn't that an amazing, awesome deal?? 

Now, time for me to dig out the vouchers I got from my door gift and take my mum over for a pampering session. I asked them if they were having any Mother's Day promotion and they informed me that they are. For Mother's Day, they are offering complimentary facial for customers who purchase a minimum of 1 hour aromatherapy massage (based on their menu price) throughout the entire month of May. They have just recently introduced a new facial using products from an award winning brand - Institut Esthederm from France, which is very effective, yet gentle to the skin. What a great way to treat their customers! Why just pamper our body when our face needs pampering too?

And guess what?!! The nice people at Vita Spa is offering a FREE toe nail colour service with any purchase at Vita Spa Solaris to any of our readers. There is no minimum purchase. All you gotta do is just use the magic word 'doubleescapades' and you get it for FREE.

OK. Time to set my appointment with them :)

Vita Spa
7-1, Jalan Solaris 4, 
Solaris Mont Kiara, 
50480 Kuala Lumpur
11am-8pm (Mon-Sun)
Tel :03-6203 6383