J65 @ Hotel Jen Tanglin

Just last week, I gushed over my weekend at Hotel Jen Tanglin Singapore (HJTS), and promised to share more about J65 – HJTS’ very own F&B outlet. So here’s a long pictorial essay. As a precaution, do not proceed on an empty stomach as it will be sure to growl at these food-porn up ahead.

I had the pleasure of trying the hotel’s dinner and breakfast buffet during my stay. With a name inspired by the Singapore international dialing code (+65), HJTS’ new all-day dining restaurant J65 is open to diners for breakfast, lunch and dinner. HJTS is one of the only hotels in Singapore to offer net pricing at it’s F&B outlet, meaning that diners get no unpleasant surprises at the end of their meal. HJTS’ other dining outlet – Jen’s Kitchen On-the-go – offers locally roasted coffee and snacks 24-hours a day.

First, let’s talk about Hooked! – Seafood Dinner, which is available on Fridays and Saturdays from 6pm to 10pm. The vibrant restaurant with a modern market look and feel offers an eclectic fusion of authentic Southeast Asian cuisine alongside the buffet’s signature selection of fresh Fin de Claire oysters, sushi and sashimi, tiger prawns, Boston lobster and Sri Lankan crab. Hot dishes include soup-baked cumin red mullet and lobster bisque, poached sweet clams, grilled sea bass and other seafood treats.

J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin 2

The layout of the buffet starts with the salad bar and cold dishes in the middle, and grilled meats and hot dishes at the side, but I couldn’t make up my mind, and so decided to attack the grilled meats for starters. The hand-carved meat cuts offered all kinds of red and white meats, including Iberico ham and roast with fancy trimmings. I’ll let the pictures do the talking.

Pork knuckles, anybody?

J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin grilled meat

J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin grilled meat

A trayful of cheesebaked mussels for my birthday pleaseJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin baked mussels

Fancy meat, bread pudding, cheesebaked mussel: a plate full of (sin and) happinessJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin on my plate

This corner of the buffet is built to resemble the classic Singaporean hawker centre: note the hanging roast ducks and chicken, layout of a gazillion chillis and sauces, plus satays and authentic peanut sauce. 6 types of regional laksa (Singapore, Penang, Johor, Thai, Sarawak, and curry) are cooked on the spot by the skillful chef. J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin 3Here’s all 6 of the laksa selection!Hotel Jen Tanglin J65 Laksa SelectionJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin Laksa

It was sooo hard to make a choice! Finally went with Penang Laksa.J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin Penang Laksa

Singapore chicken rice with all its accompanying sauces and condiments; once you’ve eaten at J65, you’d have tried a big portion of Singapore’s renowned delicacies
J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin chicken rice
Hotel Jen Tanglin J65 Chicken Rice Booth
And my favourite: SATAY! A pity they only offered chicken. Would have loved me some lamb or beef.J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin satay

This is one helluva fascinating buffet area: the YUSHENG BAR. As it was nearing the end of the Chinese New Year, you could make your own yusheng at J65, and toss in fresh salmon from the Japanese sushi bar right beside it. Staying true to the Southeast Asian/Singapore tradition indeed.J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin 1

There ain’t no lack of fibre at this buffet with this well-stocked salad bar. Tantalizing bowls of pre-tossed Thai-style mango salad, a mixed deli couscous, delectable choices of cut beetroot, shaved carrots and tomatoes are all the fibre you’d need in a meal or two.J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin saladJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin salad barJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin salad

Finally onto the seafood bar. The mussels are especially fresh. Some of the oysters tasted a little strange, but it could have been just my taste buds. The crab was amazing though.J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin seafoodJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin seafoodJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin seafood

I must say, the sushi platter and fresh salmon / sashimi are the fastest to go, once restocked. I loved the fresh salmon! The selection was not bad at all (though I couldn’t waste anymore tummy space on rice)J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin sushi

Here’s a peek at what filled our plates at dinner:J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin salmonJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin Meat FestJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin PlatesJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin MusselsJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin plate

What’s dinner without desserts? It’s like I have a separate mood centre in my brain that lights up at the sight of desserts (and coffee, too). So much happiness on this table right here.J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin dessert bar
Look at this spread!J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin coconut tart desserts

J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin DinnerJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin cakeJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin cupcakeJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin chocolate cakeJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin mango mousseJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin Cakes and DessertsImpressed by this selection of ice cream, really! The matcha was to die for (actually had the matcha at breakfast, scroll down for my matcha with sprinkles)J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin ice cream bar

This pistachio cake with chocolate fudge, and chocolate cupcake were out of this world.J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin DessertsThe pistachio bits were really darn goodJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin pistachio cake

Feel free to order one of these:Hotel jen Tanglin J65 Desserts Foodporn yummy

These go into your ice cream, or wherever you’d like them, even on your sashimi if you pleaseJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin Ice CreamJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin Ice CreamMore desserts: osmanthus jellyJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin jelly

If you need to load up on carbs, again, no lack of them. Shelves and shelves full of them, to your fancy.J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin BreadJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin JuicesJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin 6

J65 Hotel Jen TanglinSeafood galore:J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin Bar

At dinner, we made our own Kueh Pie Tee!J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin DIY kueh pie tieJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin Kueh Pie Tie

So we added everything that was available at the DIY area. Was so tempted to throw in random junk like ice cream and sprinkles in my Kueh Pie Tee shell, but that would be untrue to local traditions, and I suppose is a nono at J65, which has such strong roots in local flavours and cuisine. The buffet isn’t all, there’s an ala carte menu if you’re looking for something more.

I learnt that on other buffet nights, pizzas and other Western dishes would also be available.
Hotel Jen Tanglin J65 Pizza BuffetTravellers hunting for authentic Southeast Asian food should definitely make it a point to try J65’s Hooked – Seafood Dinner, because this is where you get the best of both worlds – Western, Singaporean, Asian – you name it, they probably serve it.

Now onto breakfast! After an awesome night’s sleep, we woke up refreshed, and ready for HJTS’ breakfast selection.

At J65’s Sunday morning breakfast, we were greeted by this table full of cold cuts to pair with the great salad bar. And as all good breakfasts should, there were hash browns, sausages, baked tomatoes and bacon. In addition, we also got to choose from a variety of Hong Kong style dimsum (chicken paus, rice rolls), and Malay style beehoon and curry. Good ol’ Peranakan style Kuehs were also available!

J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin BreakfastJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin breakfast meatsJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin Salad BarJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin Bacon Grease

J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin BreakfastJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin buffet paoCereal table, and shelves full of bread behind. Carbs heaven!J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin cereal barJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin eggsJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin buffet kuehJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin tabao bagWhat went onto our plates:J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin breakfast plateJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin breakfast choiceYes there is KIMCHIJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin breakfastAnd aforementioned to-die-for matcha ice cream!J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin breakfast dessertsI went for 2 cups of ice-cold desserts: the vanilla and matcha, both decked in my favourite crunchy choco/malt balls.J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin ice cream breakfastJ65 Hotel Jen Tanglin Matcha Ice Cream

Breakfast was just as satisfying as dinner, with the mad selection of meats (which were too heavy for us), and sweets.J65 Hotel Jen Tanglin Breakfast Buffet

Really grateful to HJTS for this staycay opportunity and for a chance to taste their signature weekend dinner and breakfast spread! Definitely spreading the word, and keeping this place in mind for future staycays. Do click through this Link for HJTS’ room rates and deals!

J65 at Hotel Jen Tanglin Singapore

J65 HJTS BuffetWeekday Lunch Buffet
S$29 net per person
Monday to Saturday
12pm – 2.30pm

Hooked! – Seafood Buffet Dinner
S$78 net per person
Friday to Saturday
6pm – 10pm 

Sunday Champagne Brunch
S$128 with free-flow Champagne, wine, beer and cocktails, or
S$88 net without alcohol

Every Sunday
12pm – 3pm

Book online for a 15% discount on the total bill.

For more information, email J65@hoteljen.com or call (65) 6831 4374.

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

Launch Party: Trulife Collagen Manuka Max

Following my review on TruLife Collagen Manuka Max, I had the pleasure of attending the launch party for this amazing new contender in the collagen market!

The launch was held last Friday, 4 March, at the homely Two Bakers Cafe on Horne Road, just opposite the Jalan Besar Stadium. Upon arrival, we were greeted by this gorgeous dessert bar!

Trulife Manuka Max desserts

If you’ve never visited Two Bakers Cafe, it’s time you should! Known for bespoke birthday cakes, artisan pastries and one-of-a-kind, crafted-to-order desserts, the cafe’s pastry chefs boast credentials from the Le Cordon Bleu. You can pretty much guess why desserts were one of the highlights of the evening. The Panna Cotta, Mini Chocolate Cake (oh-so-pretty), and the Yuzu Lemon Mini Tarts were simply to-die-for.

Trulife desserts viktoriajean

Other Trulife products, such as the Berry Eye Health, also found their way into some of these desserts. I found it novel to incorporate health supplements into indulgent food.Trulife Manuka Max Collagen Desserts

Well this is my true intention 😀

Dessert Bar viktoriajean Trulife Manuka Max Collagen

Okay back to the talk of the day: Trulife Collagen Manuka Max.

Midway through dinner we were given a short introduction to the brand and product, as a prelude to Collagen Cocktails and Desserts. Essentially, Trulife is a contemporary health-care brand which aims to answer the health and lifestyle needs of today’s society through developing products that contain a combination of herbal and western ingredients. Founded in 1971, the brand has since evolved into a custom formulator and contract manufacturer of private label health and food supplements.

Trulife Collagen Manuka Max 1 event

Trulife Collagen manuka Max Launch Party

The Collagen Manuka Max is their latest product, which has been pushed to major pharmacies, including Watsons and Guardian stores nation-wide, earlier this month. Each bottle of Trulife Collagen Manuka Max is packed with 7000mg of Micro Marine Collagen Peptides that have been clinically proven to help improve your skin’s structure and firmness.

Each bottle contains 7,000mg of collagen, Manuka Honey, Cynatine, Vitamin C, Vitamin B1, B2, B3 and B6, as well as Zinc. Plus, put your mind at ease, as the product has no added sugar, nor any form of additives and colouring.

The new collagen drink is packed with a protein Cynatine known to reduce wrinkles, promote skin elasticity, improve nail strength and reduce hair loss. We all already know how collagen repairs UV spot damages, promotes clearer complexion, improves skin appearance, and is a valuable component of any beauty regime. More information in my previous post (link here).

Dieters, this will not ruin your diet plans – you’ll be delighted to know that the product is naturally sweetened with 100% pure and natural Manuka Honey that helps to give you a nutritional boost every day. Additionally, studies have found that Manuka Honey is actually beneficial at reducing reflux and balancing your digestive system to heal stomach and intestinal imbalances, hence aiding digestion. For me, this drink has been a delicious add-on to my daily supplement intake.

One of the chefs at Two Bakers’ Cafe gave us a demonstration on a special mocktail/cocktail recipe formulated with Trulife Collagen Manuka Max (which has a unearthly green colour, but is perfect for fancy cocktails!) We all got to try a glass of this unique cocktail.

Cocktail with Trulife collagen manuka max

Wanted to give more airtime to the yummy desserts. The unassuming cup of yellow jello-looking thing is Panna Cotta, made with Trulife Collagen Manuka Max and it was my favourite dish of the night! The frosty glass on the left is the aforementioned cocktail. And the chocolate cake is on the right with the fancy sail made of white chocolate on top.

Seriously, everybody loved the Panna Cotta dessert! The recipe for it includes a full bottle of TruLife Collagen Manuka Max to produce the honey gelee, on top of the 1/2 cup of peach juice, 1 tsp of gelatin and 2 tablespoons of water. The resulting panna cotta gelee is moderately sweet and fruity enough to pass off as a healthy jelly dessert. The panna cotta base is incredibly soft-whipped, I must say!

TruLife even revealed the full recipe, and I’m gonna try my hands at making one of these! (Psst…want the recipe? DM me!)

Trulife, cakes at Two Bakers cafeCakes at Two Bakers Cafe

We all wanted to try the fancy chocolate cake! It looks as good as it tastes.

Two Bakers Cafe cakes

Loved the spread!

Cakes from Two Bakers Cafe SG

I'm here for Collagen Max!

Those were the main highlights of the launch party.

Trulife Collagen Manuka Max launch partyWe’re loving this new handy bottle of beauty supplement.

Also gotta say, dinner at Two Bakers Cafe was amazing – I chose the Butternut Mushroom Risotto from the menu, which was the dish-less-selected as opposed to the traditional Aglio Olio. All my table neighbors could smell a heavy dash of truffle oil. And those who tried the risotto agreed it was the better of 2. Honestly the last good risotto I had was at Venice in 2013! Heartening to know a place that serves a mean risotto in Singapore.

Risotto - Two Bakers Cafe
It is a compact but carb-loaded heavyweight, so don’t be fooled by its portion here.

 

Two Bakers Cafe x Trulife

The rest who had aglio olio couldn’t help digging into my risotto. Altogether it was a lovely night mingling with the other bloggers and friends. Truly grateful to Trulife and Blackbox SG for bringing us together!

Trulife x Two Bakers Cafe Event

Trulife Collagen Manuka Max Bloggers

I don’t get why I look so bored and unhappy in this photo, because I swear I was smiling so hard. I guess the photo was distracting me from ogling at desserts and chatting with my new friends.Trulife Collagen Manuka Max Bloggers

Viktoria Jean Trulife Collagen Manuka Max

Thank you for the invite!

Trulife Collagen Manuka Max is now available at all major pharmacies, Watsons, Unity, Robinsons and Metro, retailing at $58.80 for 8 bottles.

You can also get your samples from BlackBox SG!

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

[Kuala Lumpur] Toast And Roast

If like me, you had imagined ‘Toast and Roast’ to be a brightly lit cafe with piping toasts and artisan coffees, then you’re in a surprise. KL’s Toast and Roast is a distinctly traditional coffee-shop serving old-school teas, best-for-a-hangover hot Honey-Lemons, chewy Hakka noodles, bouncy beef ball soup, and what they became famous for – roast pork / chicken. When your foodies friends make the recommendations, you know you’re in good hands. It was there that I had the best charsiew ever. So as I popped my first caramelised, melt-in-your-mouth charsiew, I must have died and went to charsiew heaven.

See that plate in the middle? It’s the charsiew.


Don’t think about the fats you’re consuming, because fighting this is a losing battle. Put tht first piece in your mouth and you’re hooked. Okay, but seriously I could taste the layers of fats, and thick caramel sauce, which makes it sooo good. Usually my friends and I are a bunch of locusts sweeping across a harvest field when it comes to food, but we couldn’t finish the meat at Toast And Roast. This servings here were for our party of 8. Guess we’re not big eaters after all, or they’re really just generous with their portions.

For all fans of wanton mees or whatever mees, this bowl of Hakka noodles will get to your sweet spot. It’s all kinds of chewy without making your jaws ache. Don’t let the meagre pieces of minced pork fool you, cos there’s a whole heap underneath! So, so good.
 Look how happy my friends were with their food.
More about the other dishes: I’ve never been a big fan of meat processed into balls, aka fishballs/meatballs/chicken or egg balls, because I’ve always felt they weren’t au naturale. What even goes into ’em balls nobody knows. Nonetheless I found myself liking the bouncy beef balls that came with the soup. It’s tender, and didn’t taste like supermarket frozen meatballs. With that said, T&R also serve a mean iced white kopi, which is basically what all South Malaysian food places are good at making. I’ve not had a bad kopi anywhere in Malaysia.
  
  

‘Nuff said.

Toast And Roast
No.20, Jalan SS2/72 47300 Petaling Jaya, Selangor, 47300, Malaysia

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

[Kuala Lumpur] Alexis Cafe

Rocking the ghetto streets of Bangsar is this classy, off-the-beaten-track bistro cafe that has maintained its name with a fine selection of cakes and a sleek price to match. Not a conceptually-strong bistro, but Alexis banks its traffic on excellent word-of-mouth and high quality desserts.


  

Having heard a great deal about their Tiramisu, the 8 of us couldn’t resist getting a couple to share. Their fruit meringue and lemon tart were so darn amazing too.

With tasteful decor, scattered art pieces, white chairs and pale wood tables, Alexis needed little else in their concept to be a decent chill-out spot for afternoon tea. While the wall of wine bottles added a layer of sophistication, it was a tad lacking in the bar/pub factor. Nonetheless I loved how they stacked up all their collection so patrons could literally check the bottles out.
  

Again, random installations – this one is ‘crowdsourced’ since everybody could add their graffiti to the paper chandelier. It’s both sleek and rustic at the same time.
  
Ta-Da! Tiramisu & Fruit Meringue. Interesting how they glazed pecans and an assortment of nuts over the traditional tiramisu coating to create that crunch in your mouth that is oh-so-satisfying.

Nothing beats coffee and cakes with the best of friends. Totally did not expect these 2 to join our KL trip…till they literally surprised me by appearing in the hotel room!! They planned this all along for my birthday. What sweetie-pies!
  
  
More from that lovely afternoon.

 

A short snap from my snapchat above. Couldn’t bring out the tastefulness in Alexis (which coincidentally is one of our friends’ name). But all in all, the cakes were to die for. I’ve had amazing tiramisu cakes, but the uniqueness of this one was rather memorable.

29, Jalan Telawi 3,
Bangsar Baru, 59100 Kuala Lumpur

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

Cocoa Colony Singapore – #WhoLovesCocoa ?!

Cocoa Colony Singapore - Viktoria Jean

Couple of weeks ago, I had an smashing time at 313 Somerset’s Cocoa Colony. Literally, with a hammer to prove. It was a party both in my mouth and stomach at the media event – from liquid cocoa taste tests, to making our own chocolate desserts, and smashing their signature bolas. My inner chocoholic was in heaven.

Ain’t no new kid on the block, Cocoa Colony’s beans have been around since the 1800s. Barely 2 years since their first flagship store, 6 other stores have popped up island-wide at The Star Vista, Great World City, The Cathay, Suntec City Mall, Shaw Centre and City Square. While the chocolate cafe idea’s pretty well-endowed in other countries, thus far, Max Brenner and Cocoa Colony are the only big players here.

So we got to try their signature drinks menu: Cocoa 38 smelt and tasted a lot like fragrant diluted Milo;  Cocoa 76 was my favourite as it isn’t too sweet or thick (loved it!); Cocoa 100 was like viscous molten chocolate which was a bit hard to swallow but to each his own. Some of us loved the 100. Naturally, Bailey’s rock every drink, so Bailey’s Cocoa inspired my new cocktail mix: Bailey’s Milo Dinosaur.

We were also really lucky to get a taste from the Amazonian Liquid Gold chocolate tap! (Oh gosh thank you) Imagine a beer tap and you get the idea – we got our fill of white and dark chocolate from a free-flow tap possibly connected to underground tanks of chocolate like a well-kept secret.

Moving on to their mains, Cocoa Colony’s smaller portions might not be satisfying for those seeking a filling meal – it’s however perfect for tea. Savoury sides were fantastic companions to our sweet escapade, so something to munch on never hurts.

Pictures here we go.

So we smashed a bola or two:

the crispy inners were like Chinese biscuits – the really yummy ones that only surface annually at Lunar New Year house visits.
   Satisfaction at smashing balls – great stress relief don’t you think?

For true-blue cocoaholic-converts out there (which I trust you soon would be), these gorgeous Cocoa Colony paraphenalia are available in-store at each and every outlet.
   (customised chocolates for us! Thank you Cocoa Colony. Much love)
  
  At some point in life everybody needs wisdom, wealth and love advice. But chocolate trumps all.
  
  

Went back for a cocoa fix just this week! We tried the Iced Hazelnut Cocoa, and the Iced Cocoa Shakerato. According to my friend, the former tasted like melted down Ferrero Rocher. So, so dope.

xoxo,

Viktoria Jean

[SINGAPORE] Privé Grill @ Keppel Bay (& other tantalizing eats)

Disclaimer: This throwback post contains images of food, coffee and good people having a good time.
Do not proceed if hungry.

The Privé Grill and Privé Cafe are amongst my favourite haunts, especially since the cafe’s pretty zen on weekday afternoons when I need my caffeine most. The coffee is above-average but not the best since I’ve had better lattes for less (just had a really good ice latte not long ago at The Plain!), but definitely the view of docked yachts, calm seas and expats’ properties definitely beats the  scene at the central business district.

This afternoon, sometime back, was a weekday brunch at the grill. My friends from Thailand finally tasted the famous Privé meats, cooked to perfection using the acclaimed “Spanish imported Josper grill”. According to the extensive all-day brunch selection, Privé Grill also features tantalizing appetizers, mouth-watering mains and decadent desserts.

          

Sometime back too, was this insanely good catching up over coffee with a university senior from the good old days. Ogopogo at the Bussorah Street near Haji Lane (aside from its renowned night scene) offers really good flat white, and amazing old-school knick-knacks. Throwback to the ’90s, anybody?      

I miss humongous and insanely yummy cakes from the Cheesecake Factory in the States. I guess one of those places on this sunny little island with portions, quality control and taste that actually can be compared to the cheesecake giant, is Lady M. Of course, without the crazy waiting time. In the States, we had to make reservations and wait for up to 1.5hrs for a seat at the Cheesecake Factory. Whereas the Lady M is much classier and serves up a mean millefeuille. Bon appetit.  

This is the last of my dessert reminiscences, I swear! Tiong Bahru Bakery brings back really good memories, not just for its good coffee – every time I get TBB I’m reminded of the first person who ever brought me for TBB croissants, black smoked salmon sandwiches and latte. Cheers to good ol’times. One unfortunate thing about this place happens to be their iced lattes – they seriously don’t taste as good when cold.

Privé
2 Keppel Bay Vista, Singapore City 098382
Phone:6776 0777

Ogopogo
73 Bussorah St
Singapore 199486

Tiong Bahru Bakery @ Eng Hoon
56 Eng Hoon Street
#01-70
Singapore 160056

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

[THAILAND] o19. AFTER YOU DESSERT CAFE 

After You Dessert Cafe bangkok - Viktoria Jean

If you could only make one dessert pit-stop in Bangkok, it has to be AfterYou Dessert Cafe! In the absence of distractions (animals, excessively hipster embellishments) the establishment focuses on a competitive menu  and plain awesome desserts! Since Taiwan’s Dazzling Cafe experience and toasty good times in Korea’s trendy coffeehouses, I’ve not had good toasts in a while. Until Shibuya Honey Toast and Ferrero Icecream Toast came into my life at AfterYou and my life is worth living again. Teehee. Scroll for toastporn, millefeuille and photos of the cozy cafe interior, featuring the ChaiArmy up to our usual shenanigans, this time in Thailand for Red’s birthday celebrations (all pictures taken with my old iPhone 5 because 6+ had to stay home, in case it decides to stay in Bangkok and to never come back)

                  

 

Just waiting for the day that AfterYou comes to Singapore too, like all other high-profile franchises.

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

[THAILAND] o18. SALA AYUTTHAYA


Sala AyutthayaThailand might be most famous for vernacular and religious buildings, but its modern-day architecture has surpassed world-class standards. We hunted down this structural wonder, with the luxury of time and an inexplicable need for coffee, situated across the famed Wat Phutthaisawan, along Chao Phraya river.

Sala Resort’s boutique accommodation in Ayutthaya features 26 guest rooms (all uniquely designed) including a duplex river view suite and a pool suite, a small art gallery as well as a signature restaurant with a splendid view of Chao Phraya (reservations required, but helluva beautiful place to sit and ponder about life). I loved their deconstructed wave-inspired bricked buildings that were impressively designed to capture a play of lights. Sala Ayutthaya SIgnature Curved Staircase Sala AyutthayaArt Sala Ayutthaya ThailandArt Gallery Thailand Seaview Dining Sala Ayutthaya Thailand Seaview Dining Thailand Ayutthaya Coffee and canapés. In Thailand sauce maketh a meal complete.Crispy Rolls Thailand Sala Resorts Thailand Coffee Latte Thailand Sala Ayutthaya Sala Ayutthaya DiningDesigner living spaces and boutique serviced apartments are increasingly receiving its share of love in the land of smiles, even in city-centred resorts away from beaches and the sea. Interestingly, ‘photogenic’ qualities plays a big part nowadays as holidaymakers want to take incredible pictures for their social media platforms on top of collecting snapshots as memories. The deciding factors of holiday accommodation are as much about concept as they are about prices, location and people factors.

Food for thought. Happy holidays, people!

Sala Ayutthaya Resorts
Thanon U-Thong
Pratuchai, Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya District
Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

London Lovin’: W6 Garden Centre Café

“This is our way of celebrating the great city we live and work in. Where others see nothing but debris and stone, we see the possibility of a truly life-enhancing experience.”
– W6 Creative Director Paul Holt.

I was pleasantly thrilled to be amongst privileged writers notified of the grand opening of W6 Garden Centre Café. This gem of a coffeehouse takes centerstage under the rail arches of Ravenscourt Park tube station, promising a soothing experience that will whisk you away from the trains running just metres above, by bringing a piece of old London back to life.

Judging from this hearty menu, the cafè can expect a long list of returning patrons. Nuala O’Connor, who previously worked as a chef at Petersham Nurseries Cafe, helms the kitchen. To quote her directly, ”I want to see the cafe become established as a favourite for local people and a lovely discovery for new customers. We already serve fantastic coffee; I would like to match that with simple but delicious fresh food made with great ingredients, some of which we are even starting to grow ourselves in our herb garden.”

Yes, from a luxuriant herb garden, no less than a foliage in the interior to potted ferns on your dining table – these little green details makes W6 a perfect place to get in touch with nature. Just looking at snapshots of the greenery brings a sense of peace – who would not love these lush overhanging plants and walls of mossy bricks?

photo H&F ad

West Six Garden Cafe, Ravenscourt

West Six Garden Cafe Cappuccino

Our Cafe Interior 20.11.14Cafe Seating 20.11.14

Getting super excited by these photographs courtesy of David from W6 (thank you). I don’t usually write about cafés which I haven’t personally been, but this is too lovely not to share!

Am definitely adding this to my bucket-list on my next trip to London!

W6 Garden Centre Café
West Six Garden Centre & Cafe Ravenscourt Avenue
London W6 0SL
Opening hours: 
Mon to Fri: 8.30am – 5.00pm 
Sat & Sun: 9.30am – 6.00pm

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean