Author: C.C.

Medical Tourism Sees A positive Trend In Selangor

Located on the west coast of Peninsular Malaysia is Selangor, the most populous state of Malaysia. For decades, travellers have visited Selangor for its mix of urban and natural attractions. Those familiar with Selangor will be no stranger to Sunway Lagoon, the National Zoo of Malaysia, Batu Caves, Kanching Rainforest Waterfall, and many more diverse points of interest that make for a fun-packed trip to Selangor. The state enjoys a high standard of living, thanks to the modernisation and urbanisation of the Greater Klang Valley area, which includes a number of well-known urban centres, such as Shah Alam, Klang, Petaling Jaya, Subangjaya and Cyberjaya. It also counts its education, infrastructure, communications and healthcare facilities as among the best in the region, according to Invest Selangor Berhad.

National Zoo of Malaysia

National Zoo of Malaysia

Due to its high liveable nature and overall lower cost of living, as compared to cities like Singapore, Selangor has seen a boost in the number of visitors who come to Selangor for medical treatment. There are many who now head to Selangor for medical trips that involve surgeries and long term palliative care. The medical trips to Selangor also serve as opportunities for patients to take restful holidays with their families here. While in the recovery stage after a long operation or illness, Selangor offers light physical activities at attractions like biking through paddy fields in Sekinchan.

Its dose proximity to Kuala Lumpur also means patients and family members can also enjoy the cosmopolitan urban offerings in the capital. In total, there are 26 private panel hospitals in Selangor registered under the Malaysian Healthcare Tourism Council (MHTC) offering various medical treatments. There are also plans to develop Selangor into a world-class health metropolis to serve as a crucial part of the ASEAN healthcare system, and as a medical tourism hub to neighbouring countries.

The Malaysian Healthcare Tourism Council

The Malaysian Healthcare Tourism Council

Tourism Selangor will be showcasing wellness and health-related exhibitors, sponsors and presentations during the upcoming Selangor Wellness Living Expo 2017 (SWELL 2017), which will be held from 24 to 26 February 2017 at the Setia City Convention Centre in Shah Alam. Visitors to the expo will also be able to find out more on ways to take charge of their own health and make informed decisions on their healthcare. Visitors will also be able to view showcases from participating hospitals in Selangor dedicated to health tourism, while also asking questions one-on-one with leading healthcare and wellness professionals and specialists. As an added bonus, visitors can also receive a free check up and chances to win prizes.

The Wonders Offered By Tokyo’s Largest Hotel Chain

Tokyo may offer sights and sounds but after a long day of travelling, there’s nothing like heading back to a quiet neighbourhood for peaceful rest. Best Western Rembrandt Hotel Tokyo Machida offers value accommodation the Best Western name has long been associated with in a quaint neighbourhood near numerous conveniences.

At the Best Western Rembrandt Hotel Tokyo Machida, guests can choose from eight different room types, from a modest Deluxe Single or a two-room Luxury Suite fitted with Airweave Mattress Pillows. All rooms come with quality Simmons beds, and include facilities like multi-charger, work-desk, high-speed internet access and a full set of bath amenities. Rooms also face out to a picturesque view of the bustling city below and views of the Tanzawa Mountains in the distance.

Best-Western-Rembrandt-Hotel-Tokyo-Machida

Best Western Rembrandt Hotel Tokyo Machida

For peckish guests, Best Western Rembrandt Hotel Tokyo Machida offers three dining restaurants. For casual dining, head to Carillon for international cuisines served at a buffet. Otherwise, head to Long-Fuang for traditional Chinese cuisine or to Yumezakura for a smorgasbord of Japanese dishes; both restaurants are located on the third floor of the hotel.

The Best Western Rembrandt Hotel Tokyo Machida is just a two-minute walk from the JR Yokohama Line’s Machida Station and eight minutes from the Odakyu Line’s Machida Station as well. The subway stations offer a quick and convenient way to access some of Tokyo’s great attractions. Visit Asakusa, which is famous for its Senso-ji Buddhist temple and its frequent matsuri (Shinto festivals) throughout the year. Visitors should also check out the towering Tokyo Skytree and head to the observation deck for a 360° view of Tokyo from 450m above ground.

For more million-dollar views, travellers cannot miss out sightseeing of Mt Fuji from their itineraries. As one of the greatest places for shopping, travellers must also make their way to Shinjuku for the latest in Japanese fashion, and to Isetan, a Japanese departmental store dedicated to high-fashion food, clothing and homewares. Members under the Best Western Rewards can also redeem a ¥5,000 gift card to be used at Isetan.

Best Western Tokyo Nishikasai

Best Western Tokyo Nishikasai

For families with children and those young at heart who will be spending a bulk of their time in Tokyo at the happiest place on earth -Tokyo Disneyland and Tokyo Disney Sea, it would be best to stay at Best Western Tokyo Nishikasai. This Best Western is situated just 15 minutes away from the theme parks. Best Western Tokyo Nishikasai is also quite different from other Best Western hotels in the area because of its Sky Chapel located on the seventh floor. Sky Chapel holds 60 guests fora small, private wedding ceremony in its pristine white halls. After the ceremony, guests can walk outside to the outdoor space for a time of socialising with other guests while checking out the views of the gleaming city, or hold a reception at Party, a ballroom situated just next to the chapel.

New World Millennium Hong Kong Hotel: Chinese Innovation And Luxury

Avenue’s location and qualities are important to MICE organisers when identifying a hotel. Multifaceted meeting rooms and event spaces that on accommodate various delegates, functional facilities within the hotel and accessibility to explore the city at leisure are key highlights. Understanding the market needs, New World Millennium Hong Kong introduces the “All-round Meeting at Your Hand” package for meeting planners to take advantage of its list of benefits.

 To satisfy the needs of guests with precision and flexibility, the hotel features a fan-shaped, pillage-free Grand Ballroom and nine function venues of varying sizes. All the venues are highly configurable and ideal for intimate meetings or large-scale events that can take up to 500 guests. A professional events management team is present in house to help keep an eye out for details, attend to lighting and audio visual equipment needs and ensure a successful event – regardless of size.

New-World-Millennium-Hong-Kong-Hotel

New World Millennium Hong Kong Hotel

Event planners who book now till 29 December 2016 will get to enjoy various tiers of benefits depending on the number of rooms booked. For a booking of 10 or more rooms with a minimum stay of two nights, enjoy a special rate of S$348++ per night per room. Delegates get to enjoy daily buffet breakfast at Cafe East, complimentary laundry for three pieces of clothing per stay and welcome drinks. For bookings with more than 50 guestrooms, extra perks include an early check-in timing of 10am and late checkout timing of 3pm, free upgrade on food variety within the meeting package and possibly room upgrades with complimentary bottle of red wine in four selected rooms. Bookings of more than 100 guestrooms will include gratuity such as a hosted round-trip limousine pickup to and fro airport for VIP delegates of the group and a complimentary secretarial room throughout the meeting, subject to availability at the time of confirmation.

Featuring 464 modern contemporary guestrooms and suites overlooking the impressive city skylines of Victoria Harbour, the hotel ensures outstanding levels of hospitality to match its luxurious accommodation setting in allowing both business and leisure travellers to have a pleasant experience to remember. Beyond the meeting spaces and guestrooms, The Health Club located on the 15th floor of the hotel offers state-of-the-art facilities for health-conscious guest who might want to take a refreshing swim or pump some iron in the gymnasium. For those taking public transportation, New World Millennium Hong Kong Hotel is a mere five-minute walk from MTR East Tsim Sha Tsui Station and Hung Horn Station.

The Health Club

The Health Club

Tsim Sha Tsui is a giant world bazaar with many international brands lining up the streets, perfect for shopping addicts to destress after a business event. Alternatively, you may walk over to The Avenue of Stars to enjoy the varied neon lightshow that mingle together with the city’s mega skyscrapers to form a mesmerising night display.

Centara By Centara Phu Pano Resort Krabi, Thailand

Thailand’s leading hotel operator, Centara Hotels & Resorts, has expanded its presence in Krabi with the opening of its third property. Centara by Centara Phu Pano Resort Krabi is located near Ao Nang Beach, a prime tourist destination. The new property’s design elements borrow themes from the story of Hanuman, God-king of the apes and a central figure in the Hindu epic Ramayana. Hanuman was also the original Indian name that the Andaman Sea was known by.

Centara By Centara Phu Pano Resort Krab

Centara By Centara Phu Pano Resort Krab

The affordable resort oasis features 158 appointed guestrooms with views of the swimming pool or surrounding undulating mountains. Its central location just 35 minutes from Krabi International Airport makes it a convenient place to stay for couples, families and groups of friends that enjoy quick weekend getaways. Nearby activitie include island-hopping, diving and snorkelling. Otherwise, stay indoors to enjoy facilities like an outdoor pool, bicycles for rent and fitness centre. All-day dining is available at Mix Bistro that serves authentic Southern Thai-style dishes and international favourites.

Kiroro Resort: Hokkaido’s Most Amazing Adventure

A thrilling new ski destination that provides all the luxurious amenities that Niseko offers, but without the tiresome crowd, Kiroro resort is a sanctuary in the mountains of Hokkaido. Since travellers are all about bespoke experiences these days, this is the place to be to anticipate uncompromised, unspoilt and undiscovered trails for skiing. Be it in snowy seasons or lush summer days, visitors can enjoy the pristine Japanese wilderness all year long. With an average snowfall of 21m, Kiroro remains the top snowfall valley in the region, and one with the longest skiing season too. Adrenaline junkies and snow lovers will be pleased to learn of its high mountains, standing at 600m, and smooth mountain slopes for an unparalleled experience.

STAY

Choose from two distinct hotels when you reside in Kiroro. Sheraton Hokkaido Kiroro Resort is built with a modem contemporary design, and is the perfect haven for avid skiers. Hit the slopes at dawn and by late afternoon, unwind within the healing waters of the Tokiwa Geothermal Spa. Alternatively, choose to occupy The Kiroro, A Tribute Portfolio Hotel, surrounded by two magnificent peaks that come with breathtaking views from any room. If lounging by the spa does not sound favourable, try the Asari View restaurant located at the peak of Kiroro Resort. Sitting at 1,190m above sea level, visitors are bound to be mesmerised by the panoramic view of nature and the snow town.

Sheraton Hokkaido Kiroro Resort

Sheraton Hokkaido Kiroro Resort

World-class facilities, surrounded by the heavenly elements of nature, include snow bubble ball, a snow park, a winter forest tour, a panoramic forest tour, a snow Segway, a snow buggy, a snow banana boat, a mini snowmobile and of course, snow rafting. Most of the activities are child friendly, which makes it the ideal place fora family vacation. There is even an Annie Kids Ski Academy within the premises, founded by gold and silver Olympic medallist Annie Famose, to educate children on the endless possibilities of activities during winter.

ATTRACTIONS

If you are a Thai-movie fan, you might be pleased to know that Kiroro Resort was the main location for the highly acclaimed Thai film, “One Day”. The film revolves around many of Kiroro’s alluring landmark features that any traveller can experience too. Drop by the Lucky ‘N Love Bell that sits atop Asari Peak with your loved one. This attraction was built in 2006 by the government and used as a popular lovers’ sanctuary for proposals. Rumour has it that couples who ring the bell twice are destined to be married. Coincidentally, Kiroro’s real chapel holds many actual romantic unions.

Cafe Crest

Cafe Crest

Designed to harmonise the interior with its surroundings, the chapel’s beauty is reflected contrastingly in summer or winter, day or night, but mesmerising all the same. Cafe Crest is a popular spot for revitalising skiers and snowboarders after enjoying the popular powder snow in the region. Drop by for a hot drink or snack via the Nakamine route chairlift to recharge before the next round of skiing. Finally, Kiroro Town is the centre of attention and home to resort markets, onsens and restaurants. During winter, the snowy scene forms the perfect canvas for an Instagram-worthy picture.

Getting To See Los Angeles Like Never Before

ROOFTOP BARS

Upstairs at Ace Hotel Downtown Los Angeles – Situated atop die landmark 1927 United Artists building, this hip indoor-outdoor lounge offers an urban sanctuary in the heart of Downtown LA (DTLA). The stylish Moroccan-themed decor comes from local design collective Commune, with a concrete pool inspired by the late artist Donald Judd’s residence in Marfa. Cocktails pay tribute to neighbourhoods life Little Tokyo and Hollywood & Vine, while mouthwatering snacks include California-style avocado toast and Flamin’ Hot Cheetos.

Upstairs, LA

Upstairs, LA

Catch LA – Since opening in late September, (his West Coast outpost of the NYC favourite has become the place to see and be seen in the City of Angels. The sprawling 12,000-square-foot space features an expansive, 340-seat outdoor dining area — complete with a retractable roof for the rare LA rainy day — overlooking the twinkling West Hollywood Design District. But itfs the scene inside that offers the most impressive views of all, best enjoyed from a comer banquette over a plate of truffle tuna sashimi

NIGHTLIFE

The Walker Inn A place for serious cocktail enthusiasts, this 27-seat Koreatown den Is accessed via a discreet entry behind the Normandie Club at Hotel Normandie. Make a reservation in advance to secure a spot at the seven-person bar, where the Walker Inn’s talented mixologists lead guests through an omakase experience of two or more carefully crafted cocktail courses. The menu changes about every six weeks and always sticks to a specific idea. Previous thanes have run the gamut from “Pacific Coast Highway” to “Wet (Hot) American Summer.”

Doheny Room The latest concept from the hospitality wizards at SBE Entertainment, this restaurant-cum-lounge is where the pretty young things of Los Angeles go to let loose. Wednesdays or Saturdays are promoter rights — meaning you should probably know someone If you want to get past the velvet ropes. Once in, grab a table by the tropical wall, order a Delgado Dorado, and soak in the scene.

LA

The Walker Inn

RESTAURANTS

Gjelina – Since opening in 2008, this perennially packed eatery has helped transform the once sleepy Venice surfing haven into a highly sought-after neighbourhood. The rustic space has a humming communal bar area in the front and a courtyard in the bade, with farm-to-table plates meant for sharing. Start with one of Chef Travis Lett’s signature flatbread plazas before moving on to the grilled lamb ribs and crispy duck confit.

Tower Bar Located inside Jeff Klein’s Sunset Tower Hotel, this elegant dining room and terrace strikes the perfect balance between star-studded and understated Legendary maitre d‘Dimitri Dimitrov watches over the intimate, 80-seat space, where classic American dishes like burgers and dams casino combine with one of the best dirty martinis in town to offer an Old Hollywood fed.

Explore The Cultural Side Of India

MYSURU DASARA – For 10 days every year, Mysuru magically transforms itself from a laid-back town to a bustling, joyous and vivid centre of life during the famous Mysuru Dasara. The entire town turns into a pageant of splendour, custom, tradition, pomp and show, with gaiety, music, dance, and frolic, and a bit of the contemporary thrown in. At the heart of this is the Mysuru Palace which is not only decorated and lit up but is also where the scion of the erstwhile royal family holds a traditional darbar and many concerts are hosted each day.

MYSURU DASARA

MYSURU DASARA

Elsewhere in the city, there are sports contests, wrestling matches, theatre, music and folk dance performances, a huge fair on the exhibition grounds, adventure activities, flower shows and food melas, and a host of other activities. The spectacle culminates in spectacular fashion on Vijayadashami with the Jambu Savari, a long procession with elephants, mounted police, vintage cars and floats, and ends with a torchlight parade at nightfall.

CHITRA SANTHE – This is street art at its best. For a whole day, on a Sunday in January, the road in front of Karnataka’s premier art institute, Karnataka Chitrakala Parishat, in Bengaluru is closed to traffic and artists from all over the country display their work. There is possibly nothing like this anywhere else as thousands of artists—professional, amateur, hobbyists and part-time—get a single platform to showcase their talent. Lakhs of visitors arrive to savour this open-air display.

Indian Wildlife: Diversity, Beauty And Wilderness

SANCTUARIES AND NATIONAL PARKS

Karnataka has a vast and enviable forest cover, endowed with thick vegetation, wildlife and birds. The state is known to have some of the best and largest jungle tracts in South India. So much so that it is home to a staggering 13 national parks, wildlife sanctuaries and bird sanctuaries. The most famous and popular among them is the Nagarhole National Park, among the best-managed in the country. It is a 575-sq-km stretch of reserve forest with dense vegetation and teeming with wildlife.

Nagarhole National Park

Nagarhole National Park

The forest is very picturesque and is home to tigers, leopards, elephants, gaur, sambar and other mammals, birds and reptiles. Also popular is Bandipur National Park, one of India’s best tiger reserves. It is separated from Nagarhole by the Kabini reservoir, but is otherwise contiguous with it as well as with the Mudumalai and Wayanad sanctuaries. It possesses spectacular biodiversity and with the beautiful mist-covered Nilgiris in the background, this park is known for its scenic beauty as well. In addition, there are also the Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary and the Kokkrebellur Pelicanry.

COASTAL BELT & BEACHES

Karnataka’s coastal stretch from Mangaluru to Karwar, about 320 km, is possibly one of the state’s best-kept secrets—with hills and forests, rivers and streams, paddy fields and groves of coconut and areca nut. It curves around them, rising steeply and then dipping over hillocks. The road is mostly busy, considering the area is home to the temple towns of Udupi, Gokarnaand Murudeshwar, all of which draw pilgrims by the thousands. Predictably, a substantial number of these spill over happily onto the beaches. So it’s not the most ideal area for nature communions or lotus-eating. The journey starts in Mangaluru with lovely beaches, especially at Ullal, and delicious food.

Udupi

Udupi Beach

About an hour north is Udupi with the adorable 800-year-old Krishna Temple, temple town quirks and lip-smacking food such as dosa and. idli at Mitra Samaj. West of Udupi is Malpe, which has a beach, a bustling fishing port and the entry way to St. Mary’s Island, full of dramatic pillar-like rock formations rising out of the sea. Farther up the road is Maravanthe, a surreal stretch with the Arabian Sea on one side and the gently flowing Souparnika river on the other. At Murudeshwar, with its gigantic Shiva idol and the temple, as well as at Gokarna, with its iconic temple, it is spirituality that rules but the beaches offer a fabulous counterpoint. And if it is more beaches that you are looking for, then stop at Honnavar for a tranquil getaway or head to Karwar where there is a decent beach enhanced by the Naval Ship Museum or to Devbagh which is ideal for solitude.

Karnataka: History, Culture And Impressive Views

It’s a potent and diverse combination that has made Karnataka an irresistible and popular state even as it maintains an understated aspect that is extremely attractive. Ancient heritage sites, ethereal temples, scenic mountain ranges and ill stations, dense jungles teeming with wildlife, pristine beaches—all of these and much more have contributed to its consistent ranking among the top five most-visited states in India. And frequent visitors will tell you it’s the sheer variety that keeps drawing them back and keeping them enthralled.

HERITAGE

HAMPI – Nothing in the world can compare with Hampi, the magnificent ruins of South India’s greatest kingdom, the 15th-century Vijayanagara empire. Situated on the banks of the Tungabhadra river, it is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Krishnadevaraya is held to be the most important and progressive king of the dynasty to have ruled the region. Spread over an estimated 40 sq km, this is considered the world’s largest outdoor museum.

HAMPI Temple

HAMPI Temple

It comprises royal buildings, temples, fortifications, baths, stables, public places, markets, pavilions and thousands of elegantly carved pillars, each of which tells a story of its own. Even a week in Hampi is considered inadequate to see the ruins properly, but the most breathtaking landmarks are the king’s palace, Mahanavami Dibba, Lotus Mahal, the elegant Queen’s Bath, elephant stables, Virupaksha Temple, Vithala Temple, Hazara Rama Temple, and the images of Narasimha and Ganesha. Also worth a visit is Anegundi, which predates the Vijayanagara kingdom and is believed to be the mythical Kishkindapuri, the abode of Sugriva in the Ramayana.

BELUR-HALEBID – Often clubbed together, the two 12th-century temples at Belur and Halebidu, separated by about 15 km, are classic examples of the exquisite temple architecture of the Hoysalas. Especially noteworthy are certain pathbreaking advances in temple architecture such as use of lathes to create beautifully carved pillars and the use of the dynamic square to obtain the star structure. The Channakeshava Temple at Belur is a living temple and is characterised by its star shape, magnificent friezes on the outside, bearing stories from the Puranas, mythology and folklore. The most famous of the sculptures are the shilabalikes or celestial nymphs. The Hoysaleshwara and Kedareshwara Temples at Halebidu are in ruins and the central deity is missing, but the structures are still beautiful.

GOL GUMBAZ – The influence of the Adil Shahi kings is a strong presence in Bijapur. But amidst the many palaces, forts and mausoleums, the massive Gol Gumbaz, the mausoleum of Mohammad Adil Shah, dominates the town’s urbanscape. The structure is awe-inspiring for its sheer size and symmetrical beauty. Built in the mid-17th century, the Gol Gumbaz is considered the second largest dome in the world and is renowned not just for its architectural brilliance but acoustics as well. A mere whisper or a soft clap resonates 11 times all over the inside of the dome. The octagonal spires on four sides and cornices are also worthy of note.

Gol-Gumbaz

GOL GUMBAZ

SRIRANGAPATNA This 18th-century island fortress was the stronghold of Tipu Sultan. The ruined fortress stands in mute testimony to passing time, but there are remnants that speak of the era of the Tiger of Mysore. These include the Dariya Daulat, the Gumbaz where Tipu, his father, Hyder Ali, and other royalty are buried, the Jama Masjid, the Ranganathaswamy Temple, the obelisk, and the Wellesley Bridge.

TAJ LAKE PALACE, UDAIPUR

A matchless way to experience Udaipur, the Taj Lake Palace is one of India’s most romantic destinations. With its distinguishing character, it reincarnates the elegant lifestyles of India’s fabled Rajput royalty.

USP – The exquisite Lake Palace is like a sparkling jewel on Lake Pichola. A palace, floating in the centre of the tranquil waters, is the chief attraction. This fantasy in white marble has a supreme location, unique ambience, majestic infrastructure and exquisite architecture. It was built by Maharana Jagat Singhji II as a pleasure palace. In 1971 the Taj stepped in, giving guests a peek into the class and indulgence that had thus far been reserved for royalty. The Jiva Spa Boat is a first of its kind, evoking the majestic ambience of the traditional barges and the beautiful island-palaces of the royal family of Udaipur, this elegant floating spa is an experience unique to Taj Lake Palace.

TAJ-LAKE-PALACE

TAJ LAKE PALACE

HERITAGE PICK – The foundation stone of the palace was laid in 1743 and it was inaugurated in 1746 as Jag Niwas. It was turned into one of the most idealistic hotels in the world by Maharana Bhagwat Singhji in 1963.

BLENDING HISTORY WITH LUXURY – The lifestyle of the Mewar royals was truly luxurious. The unique glass mosaic work across the palace and some of the luxurious suites have always attracted attention to the bygone era. This is coupled with the best in traditional Indian hospitality offered by Taj.

PRIZED ARTEFACT – These are the only palace domes to be adorned with Belgian crystals—a result of the infatuation of a Maharana with the novelty of the then times.