Well, we are now well into our round the world trip.

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This topic contains 118 replies, has 24 voices, and was last updated by  canucklad 24 Sep 2018
at 12:15
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Viewing 15 posts - 61 through 75 (of 121 total)

  • Charles-P
    Participant

    ‘Inquisitive’ – thanks for that. Seats now booked. Mrs P rarely sleeps on flights so she will not miss the full flat seats.

    We will be sad to leave Sri Lanka which has been as beautiful and interesting as we were promised. We move on now to Vietnam, a country I have previously visited only once and very briefly. It will be the first time for Mrs P. We are booked into the The Reverie Saigon, a hotel recommended by company agent in Singapore, he assures me we will like the ‘quirky’ design.

    We have a number of events planned for our time in Vietnam including a trip on the Meekong River, an evening motorbike food tour in Saigon, a visit to Ha Long Bay and some time in Phu Quoc.


    Charles-P
    Participant

    We have had a small change in our plans and will now be two days in Singapore – outside of the usual tourist spots could anybody here make suggestions on what to do there ? We welcome activities linked to fine dining, architecture, aviation and walking?

    Thanks


    Inquisitive
    Participant

    So many things can be done in Singapore outside normal touristy things. Hotel shall be able to arrange various walking tours to Little India, China Town, Heritage trail, Nature walk trail.
    If you have not seen Night Safari (night zoo) or Garden by the Bay, these two are quite interesting.
    Many fine dining restaurants including Michelin star.
    But interesting ones are Jumbo seafood by the sea for Chilli and Pepper crabs, 1 Altitudes in the night will take you to the roof of one of the tallest building, drinks by the pool at Marina Bay Sands on the roof or simply go to Clark Quay to sample different kind of restaurants. If you are adventurous enough, there is a reverse bungee at Clark Quay where one is catapulted up – of course this has to be done before dinner.


    GivingupBA
    Participant

    We have had a small change in our plans and will now be two days in Singapore – outside of the usual tourist spots could anybody here make suggestions on what to do there ? We welcome activities linked to fine dining, architecture, aviation and walking? Thanks

    [1] I really enjoyed walking up Bukit Timah hill in Singapore – no Everest, but the nature reserve is quite nice. I got a taxi there easily and after the walk, an empty taxi soon turned up on the road outside the entrance. [2] I personally enjoyed a visit to Raffles Hotel (which I’m sure you already know about).

    Hope you enjoy the rest of your trip. I’m enjoying your trip reports, hope you keep writing!


    Charles-P
    Participant

    ‘GivingupBA’ – thanks for that, we appreciate it. Glad you are enjoying our trip reports.


    Charles-P
    Participant

    ‘Inquisitive’ thank you for your suggestions – most kind


    LuganoPirate
    Participant

    I personally enjoyed a visit to Raffles Hotel (which I’m sure you already know about).

    When I used to visit Singapore in the late 70’s to early 90’s I distinctly remember the bar being on the ground floor and the tigers head mounted on the wall. When i visited a few years ago it was on the first floor and no mounted head but a plaque (an advertising one I think) instead! No one there knew anything different and so this gave Mrs.LP more reason to doubt my sanity!

    Does anyone here remember if the bar was on the ground floor? Any help from the old Singapore hands in establishing I’m of sane mind much appreciated.


    Charles-P
    Participant

    Thanks to an old business contact here we managed to secure a room at Marina Bay Sands hotel and what a hotel ! We have a Club room and we keep the curtains open day and night such is the magnificent view. Service, decoration and facilities are first class. Could not be better.

    Famous of course for the rooftop infinity pool (which is very much worth a visit) we took the advice of ‘Inquisitive’ (thank you) and did the drinks by the pool – very enjoyable. A Gin and Tonic never tasted better.

    We tried the Bread Street Kitchen by Gordon Ramsey, a little underwhelming, perhaps we were expecting too much however the Ce La Vi Restaurant and SkyBar was magnificent and exceeded our expectations. I had the Hokkaido Scallop and Oyster Cevache while my wife went for the spicy beef which she described as “succulent and tasty”.

    This morning while Mrs-P did the spa experience I chose to walk up up Bukit Timah hill together with an old friend here (recommendation by ‘GivingupBA’) quite a climb but the nature reserve and experience makes it all worthwhile. Returned feeling virtuous and smug after the exercise so indulged myself with a visit to the Hugo Boss store for some new swimming trunks (old ones damaged in India).

    Tonight we have dinner reservations at Les Amis which I understand offers classic French cuisine but with Asian touches. We have managed to bring together two other couples who we have known for years here and we expect to all have hangovers tomorrow.

    At present we are due to leave for Vietnam on Wednesday however there is a chance I can get to fly a particular WWII aircraft which is here, more on that later.


    Inquisitive
    Participant

    LuganoPirate, the Raffles hotel is closed for more than an year for a major overhaul and upgrade.
    No details when it will open, but Long bar will surely be there (I hope).


    Charles-P
    Participant

    The Concierge here tells me that Raffles will reopen with a Christmas party in late December of this year.


    Charles-P
    Participant

    As I am told that Les Amis is quite formal decided to go for the White dinner jacket look tonight, photo of self below

    Edited to include photo of Mrs-P

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    stevescoots
    Participant

    ‘Inquisitive’ – thanks for that. Seats now booked. Mrs P rarely sleeps on flights so she will not miss the full flat seats.

    We will be sad to leave Sri Lanka which has been as beautiful and interesting as we were promised. We move on now to Vietnam, a country I have previously visited only once and very briefly. It will be the first time for Mrs P. We are booked into the The Reverie Saigon, a hotel recommended by company agent in Singapore, he assures me we will like the ‘quirky’ design.

    We have a number of events planned for our time in Vietnam including a trip on the Meekong River, an evening motorbike food tour in Saigon, a visit to Ha Long Bay and some time in Phu Quoc.

    Enjoy Saigon Charles, I am here all week looking an apartment, here so often now its time to get a place instead of paying the hotel costs! the martini bar in the hyatt does some mean martinis but my favorite is a little place called snuffbox that do some amazing concoctions!

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    esselle
    Participant

    LP

    Distant memory but yes it was on the ground floor originally. It ended up on the second floor (before it closed) but not sure when that change took place.

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    Charles-P
    Participant

    So now we are in beautiful Vietnam.

    Singapore was a great time and we had the opportunity to do things and visit places that were not on our original itinerary. Dinner at Les Amis with friends was excellent, I recommend the Foie Gras starter and the grilled lobster together with a Daniel Defaix Cote de Lechet 2000. I have a good memory of the evening up until around 11pm when various whiskies were produced for us to ‘sample’ after that things are somewhat a blur ! Mrs-P claims I was singing in the taxi home although I find this unlikely.
    For me a highlight of the visit to Singapore was an opportunity to fly a Stearman Model 75 biplane. Recently restored this remarkable WWII trainer was a delight to fly from the front seat and although the flight was a short one I enjoyed the experience immensely. Very much a different kind of flying compared to my Pilatus and in many ways a far more ‘pure’ form of aviation. I now have a wonderful photo of me in the cockpit complete with flying helmet and goggles, echos of the early days at Cranwell (before my time).

    This visit to Singapore was again an opportunity for me to both share with my wife what I already knew of a location and for me to discover new things I had previously not had time to enjoy.

    We are now at The Reverie Saigon, a very unusual hotel with a number of distinctive oddities that are proving very enjoyable to discover. We have taken a ‘Junior Suite’ which is magnificent and priced at less than $250 per night, excellent value. I am off now for a swim in the outdoor pool before dinner.

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    Charles-P
    Participant

    Just back now from our cultural tour of Hanoi, we saw the famous Ba Dinh square where the Vietnamese deceleration of independence was made by Ho Chi Minh. Personally I found it all a bit heavy going, far too much,
    Workers, peasants and students rose up as one in Socialist solidarity” for my liking but others seemed happy. The square is one of the few areas of the city that is still green and not built on which makes it popular for those seeking a break from the noise and traffic. We also visited the ‘Temple of Literature’ which was frankly boring.

    We had lunch at ‘A Taste of Hanoi’ on Chau Long Street, this was on the recommendation of the hotel concierge and it was very good. Popular with ex-pats and visitors the interior decoration is an eclectic mixture of photos and drawings. The food is very tasty, I had Cha Ca which is grilled minced fish and very popular with locals, my wife had bun cha a recipe of grilled pork and noodles these were washed down with Belgian Hoegaarden beer (waiters suggestion).

    Tomorrow something a little different, below is the blurb from the company we have booked with:

    Two day Halong Bay cruise with one-way seaplane flight from Hanoi
    Fly over the UNESCO World Heritage–listed bay and enjoy aerial views from a 12-seat Cessna
    Tour the Cave of Surprises, sunbathe on deck and kayak or snorkel past jungle-clad limestone pillars and secluded lagoons

    Off for a swim now.

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