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Friday, July 25, 2014

Singapore Cheongsams :: Joli Pretty Online Shop + {Giveaway & Promo}

Ladies who like to wear cheongsams will be happy to know that there's a new kid on the block - Joli Pretty, an online boutique based in Singapore selling modern cheongsams. I'll be adding them to my list of where you can find cheongsams in Singapore :)

Joli means "pretty" in French, and they hope to provide all women with modern cheongsams that can make them pretty & fabulous for all occasions.Their first collection launched last month and I got my hands on 3 different designs - one for more glamourous events, one with an back zip, and one with an open-front.

Wonderful Night is a modern, sleeveless cheongsam made from tafetta fabric and fully-lined with silk. It comes with invisible side pockets and an open front with 2 fabric buttons.

I like the straight cut and purple hibiscus print against the shiny black, which goes all the way around the back too. I don't get dresses that only have details in the front but forget the back, and thankfully this cheongsam is not like that. Still very chic, and not overly formal or stiff. 

All the cheongsams I currently own have back-zip designs, so I found it more tedious to wear one with an open front since I have to zip the side, snap about 7 invisible fasteners, and button 2 fabric buttons. I asked the co-owner, Ann, why she wanted to have this in her designs as I reckon most women would want modern cheongsams with back zips for more convenience. She explained to me that cheongsams with open-front actually require more tailor skills, effort and time but they wanted to preserve the way that classic/traditional cheongsams are made, which are with open-fronts.

However, Joli Pretty also includes back-zip designs in their collections to fit women like me with busy lifestyles and who prefer fuss-free clothing.

Polka Dot & Such is one of their dresses with a back-zip. It is made from 100% premium cotton, and is fully lined with another layer of lightweight cotton. I like the mix of polka dot fabric with the petite leaves print, which has a very batik-feel.

Bintan has about the same weather as Singapore, and I wore this out one night when we went out of Angsana Bintan Resort to Pasar Oleh Oleh for dinner. I found it to be really comfortable, and easy to move around in thanks to the flare, pleated skirt {which also helped to hide my happy belly after eating haha}. The collar height of this collection is at 4cm, which is good for those looking for modern cheongsams for daily wear. Too high a collar might make it too stuffy and uncomfortable for the wearer, especially in our sweltering heat... and for me, it felt all right. Maybe because I have a short neck haha.

However, for more special occasion cheongsams, I think a higher collar would look nice too as it makes the wearer seem more elegant with the illusion of an elongated neck :) Ann said there would be this option for future collections.

Happy Fall is another everyday cheongsam made with premium cotton and lined with lightweight cotton. It has the traditional open-front, which after a few wears, I've come to like too as I can easily wear it by myself. Sometimes for dresses with back zips, I've to ask hubby or Lil Pumpkin to help me pull the zip up :P

Happy Fall is a very refreshing green with light fauna prints, and even though I don't particularly like most shades of green, I love love love mint green :P An excellent colour for summer! Oh this one has the cute invisible side pockets too which I adore! They are so useful and I'm very drawn to dresses with them.

Joli Pretty provides an additional pair of buttons with each dress, which I think is a good added service since most likely, you can't find the same buttons from the usual shops. The shopping website is easy to navigate with detailed photos of each dress, and Ann replies to emails promptly so if you have any queries, she'll be able to help you fast.

Customisation of fit and buttons are not available, and no fitting before purchase is available as they are sold exclusively online. So, choose your sizes properly with the size chart on the website {measure your bust and waist} as they do not accept changes or returns at the moment. For your reference, I'm wearing size M for all 3 dresses.

Promo: Quote "sakura10" for 10% off ALL Joli Pretty cheongams from their online store when you email your purchase order to info.jolipretty@gmail.com. Due to some IT complications, promo code is not valid when purchasing with the online shopping cart on the website. Valid for first-time purchases until 31 Oct 2014 only. Free shipping to Singapore addresses and overseas shipping available.

Just for my special blog readers and friends only, I have ONE Happy Fall Modern Cheongsam {worth S$139} to give away! It's available in sizes S, M and L but if your chosen size is not available, you may choose either a Wonderful Night {worth S$159} or Polka Dot & Such {worth S$139} cheongsam.

Giveaway Method: Random Draw

1. Be a Sakura Haruka Facebook page fan

2. Be a Joli Pretty Facebook page fan

3. Like & Share this Facebook photo and tag a friend. Make sure your post is public!

4. Leave me a blog comment telling me where you'll wear a modern cheongsam to + FB name you used to like the pages + email add. For those unsure of how to comment, choose "Name/URL" option then add your name and comment. If you prefer to send me your email add privately, leave a comment for the other answers then contact me at sakuraharuka {at} live {dot} com.

ONE random winner will be chosen. Just complete all 4 simple steps!

* Open to Singapore residents only.
* Ends Monday, 4 Aug 2014 2359hrs {Singapore time} 
* Incomplete or inappropriate entries will be deemed invalid and will not be included.
* Winners will be announced by Sunday, 10 Aug 2014 on this blog post and notified via email. Winner have 3 days to reply, or the prize will be redrawn.
* Sakura Haruka is not responsible for any prizes lost, damaged or misplaced in the mail.     
* Chosen items are subject to stock availability.    

* Disclosure: Joli Pretty provided the cheongsams for review and giveaway. All other accessories belong to me. No monetary compensation was received, and all opinions are my own.


Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Wordless Wednesday {linky}: Family Obento Ideas - Goreng Pisang & Fresh Mango | Week 30

 What's in my obento this week? 
Goreng Pisang {fried banana fritter} & Fresh Mango.

My my we are already in Week 30!
The goreng pisang is from a stall just opposite myvillage in Serangoon Gardens.
Hubby reckons it's one of the best as it's always crispy & fresh!

Obento {お弁当} is a home-packed meal common in Japanese cuisine and doesn't always need to be complicated or time-consuming. I hope to inspire you to create delicious, everyday obento meals for your family with these simple ideas and tools.

These photos are part of the 52 Weeks Family Obento Ideas series.


Sakura Haruka's wordless wednesday
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Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Prepping for P1: Comparison of Popular Maths Enrichment Classes in Singapore

It is the Primary 1 registration period in Singapore now and I've been following the news on this topic lately since Lil Pumpkin is going to register next year. I've also started going into the Kiasuparents forum to read up more on other people's experiences on registering their child, and how they get their kids prepared for entry into our formal schooling system.

Kiasuparents is like a scabby wound. You know you're not supposed to keep picking at it {i.e keep reading the forum} since it'll cause you more stress, or even distress, but you just can't help it :P

I've been thinking of sending Lil Pumpkin to Math enrichment classes to improve her math skills. Her answers are very "creative" but frankly, I think her teachers won't appreciate it haha

I'd like to be one of those parents that come up with their own fabulous worksheets and games to home-school Lil Pumpkin as well but as a full-time working parent, that is simply not possible without me losing my sanity. It's not just that I don't have the time, it's also because I understand I don't have the skills and patience. Looking at some of the primary school maths problems nowadays, it looks very different from how we used to learn it in school. Everybody has their own limits, and I know mine.

I'm worried that Lil Pumpkin may not be able to catch up with her class in Primary 1 and feel some sort of "culture shock" and stress since currently, we don't emphasize on her doing any structured studies at home. So, we'd like to start early and build her foundation, slow and steady, then let her feel the need to rush and catch up.

That's how we felt when we enrolled her in her Chinese enrichment class too. It was a good move as now she can at least understand, and communicate simply in Chinese. She can recognise a lot of Chinese words too and best part is, Lil Pumpkin is interested to learn more!

Choosing a Chinese enrichment class was pretty easy for us. We didn't really research much into it, and chose her school because it seemed pretty reputable, we liked their curriculum plus they had a convenient location / class time for us so we enrolled her in one without much fuss early in Nursery 2.

I thought it'd be as easy for choosing a Maths enrichment class as well. My colleague's daughter is learning CMA and Kumon is a pretty popular choice. So I thought it's just between these 2. Easy peasy. And then I started to check it out in Kiasuparents and realised there's many more choices!!! Arrrgggghhh!!

I spent about 2-3 days reading through all the forum threads, researching other online sources and calling the centres. It's not so much that I want to look for the best one, because I don't think there really is one... only one that suits your child the best. What we want for Lil Pumpkin is to make Maths-learning fun for her, and to get the ball rolling on building her strong foundation and good study habits in Maths. Like how we did for her Chinese.

Admittedly, some parents start their kids on enrichment programs early because they want their kids to be the top scorers in school. However, most, like us, join these programs because they have no time to come up with the materials at home and still want their child to learn more and follow some sort of structure.

I still believe in letting her enjoy her childhood, but maybe I am a kiasu parent, after all :P

Here's what I found for my own reference, and for others who may find it useful. It's not my own personal experience so I cannot vouch for some of the comments I've featured. Details for each enrichment class are gathered from information online and from calling the various centers.

Of course there are more choices than what I've listed here, but these seem the most talked-about now. All information is correct at the time of this post, but feel free to contact me if anything needs updating.

Kumon Singapore Website: http://sg.kumonglobal.com/

Method Origin: Japan

Diagnostic test: Yes (15-20mins test + 30 mins discussion} Starting level 7A, age 3.

Method: Individualised learning method and drilling concepts through worksheets. Teachers are just facilitators, and students have to keep doing worksheets until they get the correct answers, within a certain time frame. The worksheets have been designed in a way that allows students to figure out how to solve the problems on their own. Examples and explanations are clearly provided when moving into new topic areas, encouraging students to self-learn and advance independently at all times.

Kumon methods emphasis on speed and accuracy which are achieved through repetitive practices. There is a small amount of homework everyday. Students get to keep completed booklets.

Follow MOE syllabus: No

Duration: 2x/week, 30-45mins/class

Homework: Yes {about 30mins daily, 1 day off/week}

Centres: Easily available island-wide

Class size: No maximum, depends on classroom size 

Deposit: No

Registration fee: S$40 {inclusive of GST}

Monthly fee: S$140 / subject per 8 lessons

*Note: E.nopi {currently known as Eye Level Learning} is very similar to Kumon.

MPM Singapore Website: http://sg.mpmmath.com/

Method Origin: USA?

Diagnostic test: Yes, ideal starting age 5-8

Method: A well-sequenced math program designed around the concepts of Multi-Process and Multi-Model mathematics. MPM is a self-learning system personalized for each student. Through the PSL (Personalized System of Learning) approach ie teachers are just facilitatos, MPM students optimize their learning independently, with minimal guidance from the instructor. Designed for preschoolers to P6.

A mum said "2 books to complete each week (the booklets are very colourful, compared to Kumon). You can take 1 book in a day (classes 2x/week) or 2 books in a day (classes 1x/week). Student have to complete about 9 pages in each booklet in the centre (with teacher guidence) and the next 9 pages have to be completed at home. Then submit the booklets the following week. Do not mark the booklets as the teacher will do it so that they know how are the kids performing and correction have to be done on the spot."

Do note that students cannot keep the marked books after completion. 

Follow MOE syllabus: Yes

Duration: 2x/week {1hr} or 1x/week {2hrs} i.e. total 8hrs/month {and 8 books/month}

Homework: Yes

Centres: Easily available island-wide. Some parents recommended Siglap, Parkway, Toa Payoh, Hougang but to avoid Clementi

Class size: 12:1

Deposit: S$50 {refundable upon 1 month withdrawal notice}

Registration fee: S$50 {for test and stationery set}

Trial lesson: No

Monthly fee: *first payment is by term, and subsequently there's a choice to pay by month
$440 per term of 12 weeks or $155 per month {K1 - P1}
$460 per term or $160 per month {P2 - P3}
$500 per term or $175 per month {P4 - P6}

CMA Singapore Website: http://www.cma.edu.sg/

Method Origin: Taiwan {lessons conducted in English}

Diagnostic Test: Yes {45mins - 1hr}, can start from age 3

Method: A pioneer in the Two-hand, Four-finger methodology that has upped the benefits of abacus mental arithmetic to a whole new level. Class lessons conducted with multimedia teaching, memory games, hands-on activities, songs, individual and group challenges.

A mum said "CMA's (abacus) coverage is very narrow. It is only about arithmetic but Math is more than just arithmetic. CMA does not cover Time, Money, Graphs, Mass, Volume etc.... which are topics that primary school students need to learn in school too."

Follow MOE syllabus: No

Duration: 2x/week {1.5hrs} or 1x/week {1.5hrs}

Homework: Yes. At the end of each lesson, child will take home a VCD to review and revise lesson in class. They are also given a password to watch online tutorials.

Centres: Easily available island-wide

Class size: 12:1

Deposit: S$50 {refundable}

Registration fee: S$80 {includes t-shirt, bag, materials}

Trial lesson: S$31

Monthly fee: *8% discount with a current student's referral.
S$310 per term of 10 weeks {for lessons 1x/week}
S$230 per term of 10 lessons {for lessons 2x/week}

JEI Singapore & PSLEMath Website: http://pslemath.com.sg/

Method Origin: JEI- Korea and PSLE Math- Singapore

Diagnostic test: Yes (less an hr), can start from age 4

Method: Students start with JEI until P1. JEI’s comprehensive diagnostic system will analyze each student’s test results and prescribe an individual study program. The individualized learning program is tailored to each student’s needs and abilities and creates the optimal educational environment. Each student learns at his or her own pace so that each new concept and skill is mastered thoroughly before progressing to the next level.

PSLEMath is a Singapore based programme from P2 onwards, done together with JEI. It was first developed jointly with ex-school teachers and PSLE markers. The strength of this programme lies in its systematic method of classifying complex heuristic problem sums in a manner to make learning, understanding and revision more efficient and simple. PSLEMath achieves this by organising the questions first by topics and then further by types. Math problems of the same types have similar approaches and concepts. By structuring its work books in this manner, PSLEMath's work books provide sufficient practice for children to apply their learning several times.

A mum said "looking at the materials for the JEI part, I feel they are much better than enopi or mpm as they are very intensive (looks like 15-20pgs), colorful and a few questions on each page, pictorial yet very relevant to spore syllabus. and the best part is u can bring the materials home, unlike enopi or mpm

For psle math its purely problem sums (cos the basic math is under the JEI bklet) and incorporates heuristics sums."

They also do diagnostic test regularly and can adjust the booklets according to each individual quickly.

Follow MOE syllabus: Yes

Duration: 1x/week, 2hrs

Homework: Yes {about 30mins/week}

Centres: Only at Marine Parade {recommended teacher Jason}, Ang Mo Kio, Bukit Timah, Clementi, Tampines, Bukit Batok

Class size: 6:1

Deposit: S$100 {refundable}

Registration fee: $20

Trial lesson: S$60 for 2hrs{Tampines}, Free {Ang Mo Kio}

Monthly fee:  S$410 per term of 10 weeks

Math Monkey Website: http://www.mathmonkey.com.sg/

Method Origin: India or South Asia

Diagnostic test: Yes (15-30 mins interview - skill assessments & verbal questions)

Method: Based on the philosophy that FUN is the key to learning, Vedic Math concepts are taught using carefully designed games and tools. The Math Monkey Curriculum is the culmination of more than 36 years' of research and teaching experience in Vedic Math of Professor Kenneth Williams. He has been widely regarded as the 'guru' of Vedic Math. He believes that children shouldn't have to rely on a calculator or pencil and paper for something the mind is capable of doing without them.

There are three components to the Math Monkey Programs:
- Use of games in Math Monkey classes: Children are encouraged to think on their toes in order to be able to play the games. As a result, learning occurs and math skills are greatly enhanced.
- Sharpening of concentration and memory skills: Classes are conducted primarily without the use of pencil and paper. This will build mental math ability of the children.
- Continued learning at home through weekly home assignments. These home assignments allow practice between lessons and provide teachers with feedback on the student's retention and progress.

Follow MOE syllabus: Some topics covered

Duration: 1x/week, 1hrs

Homework: Yes

Centres: Only at East Coast Road, Novena, Jurong East

Class size: 6:1

Deposit: No

Registration fee: S$45

Trial lesson: Free

Monthly fee:  S$450 per term of 12 weeks

Overall,  we'd like Lil Pumpkin to attend a class where learning is fun and interactive, and the concepts are explained to her, rather than drilled into her brain. We'd like her to understand the concepts, not just memorise them. Thus, we're leaning towards JEI/PSLE Math or Maths Monkey now.

However, we haven't not fully decided yet as it will also depend on the location and schedule of available classes. Will see how it goes and hopefully enroll her in a class by year's end.

Are your kids attending any Maths enrichment classes now? 
If yes, which one and how do you find it? 
If not, how do you practise Maths with them?

Disclosure: This is not a sponsored or paid post. All views, unless otherwise expressed, are my own.


Sunday, July 20, 2014

Weekend Getaway | Angsana Bintan Resort & Spa, Indonesia

Last weekend we went away for a quick family getaway to Angsana Bintan Resort and Spa in Indonesia. I love long holidays but sometimes, when I get back I feel even more tired with the mountain of work {sorry if I haven't replied your emails yet!} and laundry to catch up on.

With short weekend getaways, you enjoy the blissfulness of getting away from the hustle of work and the mundane, and the refreshing energy still spills over to normal life when you return. Especially when you come back from a beautiful place like Angsana Bintan #bringmebacknowplease

It was a breeze collecting our tickets from Bintan Resort Ferries at Tanah Merah Ferry Terminal, as the counter is almost directly in front of the main entrance, and next to the check-in baggage counter. I didn't remember needing to check-in our luggage when we went to our getaway at Batam, but like when flying, if your luggage is bigger than cabin size, you have to check it in. 

After a 1 hour ride in a big air-conditioned ferry, we reached Bintan! It stopped at Bandar Bentan Telani Ferry Terminal, which is just about 15 minutes ride away from Angsana Resort. The resort has a free shuttle ride {you'll need to pre-book} for transfer, or you can also take their private car ride {US$25 return}.

While waiting to check-in the room, Angsana Resort staff will serve you delicious lemongrass drinks and explain to you the amenities and activities available at the resort. We were supposed to stay in a Deluxe Double Room but I suppose since it was off-peak season and the hotel wasn't full, there was room in the One Bedroom Suite and we were upgraded to stay there. Woohoooooo~!

The One Bedroom Suite was very comfortable for our family of 3. It features separate living and dining areas, one bedroom with a queen-sized bed, two balconies and a pantry.

Best part was it faced the beach! This was the view that greeted us everyday for our weekend getaway #love

Soon after we arrived, we brought Lil Pumpkin to the pool as she kept bugging us ever since she saw that we were packing in her swimsuit and arm floats. Lil Pumpkin was so pleased to see big pool! We spent about an hour there swimming around and playing with the boy's new "waterproof" Sony Xperia Z1 mobile, which konked out after our first use!! It wasn't even deeper than the maximum water depth the mobile was supposed to handle.

That mobile is definitely not waterproof as it claims to be, and unfortunately we found out the hard way. After reading some reviews online {where one guy's Xperia Z1 spoilt after use in the shower!}, we realised that we weren't the only one that suffered :'( The boy was pretty down and disappointed after that, but luckily he cheered up a little with the BBQ buffet dinner we had at Lotus Café.

It was a really sumptuous spread that included not just BBQ seafood, but also cooked local delights, fruits and kueh cakes. My favourite for the night were the Indonesian Oxtail Soup {sop buntut} and minced seafood on lemongrass sticks satay {sate seafood}.  The BBQ buffet dinner only happens once a week on Fridays, so we were lucky to catch it during our stay.

There was a spare bed in our room and Lil Pumpkin wanted to sleep there all by herself! She did for the whole night and we're so proud of her :) She looks so small in the single adult bed hehe.

After a good night's rest, we started our second day with breakfast at the Lotus Café again. The hotel breakfast is quite a spread with a variety of intercontinental breakfast dishes {sausages, baked beans, beef bacon etc.}, conflakes, salad & cold meat, an egg station for omelets, poached eggs, fried eggs etc., bread, cakes, fruits, juices and so on.

Lil Pumpkin played in the Kid's Club while the boy and I slipped away for some couple-time at their famous spa after breakfast. For kids aged 3 -10 years old, the Kid's Club is free and available for all young guests to enjoy under supervision from the resort staff, while parents can enjoy the rest of the resort. This is definitely a plus for us~

The Kid's Club is very well equipped and they have books, puppets, colouring and of course, even Lil Pumpkin's favourite kitchen playset. They also organise acitivities such as cookie baking, t-shirt painting, beads jewelry-making etc that come at a small fee. Lil Pumpkin painted this t-shirt! She said the small fish is her, while the big fish is me hehe.

The boy and I enjoyed our 2 hour spa treatment which included a 90-minute Javanese massage and 30 minutes relaxation time. I was thinking of going for Angsana's signature massage, but decided to do the Javanese massage instead as this deep tissue massage aids to rid deep-seated knots and relieve muscle tension and aches. I like massages with strong pressure :) The harder the better hahahaha

We calmed our mind and let our spa therapists massage away our troubles in this beautiful air-conditioned room overlooking the blue waters of the South China Sea. It was such a treat and I could have lied there all day long....

After our relaxing spa, we picked Lil Pumpkin up and we had lunch at their beach restaurant, Pantai Grill and Bar. They serve Western and Asian cuisine. We ordered a Hawaiian pizza, PJ sandwiches and fish & chips. Pretty impressed with the fish as the pieces were very big, and covered with just a thin layer of crispy batter. In some other restaurants, the fish batter seems more than the fish meat haha.

In the late afternoon, we brought Lil Pumpkin on a thrilling All-Terrain Vehicles {AVT} ride. A first for all of us!! We took the family mini-car and the boy drove for 30 minutes on the beach, through the jungle and around the resort {got to see part of the Laguna golf course too}. He said it was a bit tiring as there's no power-steering heh. I found it a bit tiring too holding on to Lil Pumpkin and making sure she didn't suddenly jump out :P

Oh my goodness I thought Lil Pumpkin would be kinda scared, but this little daredevil LOVED it and was screaming with glee the whole way hahahah. Take a look at our AVT experience on YouTube if the video above isn't working.

After that, I went on another thrilling adventure to ride the waves on a jet-ski. Lil Pumpkin was disappointed that she couldn't come along as she was too young and had to stay with the boy, who didn't want to go since he couldn't swim well. Ahh well, such a pity because it really was such an adrenalin rush!

The instructor taught me how to use the jetski before we went out to the water and he helped to lead around the sea. The first thing I asked him was "are there any sharks here??" Although I'm a pretty good swimmer and deep waters don't scare me, I'm damn scared of sharks!! Luckily he answered "no, only ikan bilis.. small fish". Phew!!

At first I was a little scared to go out too far from shore, but the instructor kept urging me and I grew more confident with the jetski after a while so I went pretty far out! Almost to the small kelong you see in the picture behind. It helped as well that there were other people rowing kayaks out there and I didn't feel too lonely.

At Angsana Bintan's Marine Centre, there's a myriad of water sports that test your skills and physical limits. Other than jet-skiing, you can wind surf, knee-board or water-ski. More relaxing sea activities include banana boat, sea donut, stand up paddle board, body board, surfing board and snorkelling. Prices for activities start from US$6.

We then brought Lil Pumpkin for another swim at the pool, then took a hotel car shuttle {S$5/adult & S$3/child return} out to Pasar Oleh Oleh for dinner. It's a souvenir gift market and shopping village set up to promote Indonesian culture, arts and crafts for tourists i.e. don't expect to catch any real "local life" there.

15 minutes drive away from Angsana Bintan, it consists of about 15-20 shops {mainly massage parlours and convenience stalls} and 3 restaurants. You can probably finish the whole area in 30 minutes, but since we had dinner there, we took about 1.5 hours.

Pasar Oleh Oleh is a quick stop to visit if you want to try some of the local food like sea snails {gong-gong} that isn't found in the resort. Price-wise, it's definitely cheaper than the resort but about the same price as food in Singapore food courts. If you head to the main town that's 1 hour drive away, Tanjong Pinung, you'll probably find cheaper food and more shopping stuff.

On our last day, we brought Lil Pumpkin to yet another splashing good time at the pool after breakfast. Had time to go back for a quick shower, pack up then leave the resort at 1.30pm. Our ferry back to Singapore was at 2.30pm and you are supposed to pick-up your boarding pass at least 1.5 hours before the ferry departure time, but thankfully, Angsana Bintan can print the ferry passes out at the resort so you don't need to be at the terminal too early. There really isn't much to do there and the prices for any souvenirs is pretty exorbitant.

Overall, like some reviews online mentioned, the facilities at Angsana Bintan are kind of dated, but we find them very well-maintained. The staff friendliness is definitely tops,  and we appreciate that we have everything we want right at the resort, without the need to go anywhere else. A stay there will definitely be more expensive compared to the average Bintan hotel, but you're paying for the luxury, convenience, security and safety.

The boy was very happy with our getaway, despite his mobile troubles and even said he wouldn't mind coming back again! Needless to say, Lil Pumpkin really enjoyed herself too. How not to with daily pool time and fun at the Kid's Club? Me? I feel thoroughly rejuvenated and ready to take on the world!! *grins*

Promo:  From 26 - 28 Sep 2014, Angsana Bintan will be having a Family Adventure Weekend! Kids aged 7 - 14 can look forward to three days of fun and educational activities including a treasure hunt and an amazing campfire experience, while mum and dad enjoy some well-deserved me-time. From US$500, the promo package includes 2 nights stay, return transfers from ferry terminal to hotel, daily breakfasts, selected family meals, all children activities etc. Email reservations-bintan@angsana.com for more details.

  • Currency used at Angsana Bintan is USD while shops at Pasar Oleh Oleh accepts only Indonesian Rupiah.
  • Remember to pack in your swimsuit, sunscreen and insect repellants, although you can get small packets of insect repellents from Angsana Bintan's service staff.
  • Rubber slippers {adults only} are available for loan in the rooms.
  • Although there are some boat floats available at the pool for use, bring your own pool toys, kids floats and arm floats {if needed}.
  • It's best to make reservations at the resort restaurants before going for your meals.
  • Sit on the left side of the ferry on the way to Bintan, and on the right side on the way back to Singapore. Those are the sides where the ferry exits open at the various terminals, and where people leave the ferry the fastest as there's a jam in the middle when passengers collect their cabin bags.

Angsana Bintan Resort & Spa
Jalan Teluk Berembang, Laguna Bintan, Kepulauan Riau 29155, Indonesia
Tel: +62 770 693111
Website: http://www.angsana.com/en/bintan/

* Disclosure: Weekend family getaway was partially sponsored by Angsana Bintan Resort & Spa. No monetary compensation was received, and all opinions are my own.