Showing posts with label lifestyle. Show all posts
Showing posts with label lifestyle. Show all posts

Friday, August 19, 2022


The hotel of choice for KL-lites. Newly appointed General Manager of Four Seasons Hotel Kuala Lumpur (FSHKL) Blaise Montandon aims to attract local city dwellers as well as international visitors to the FSHKL, making it the most happening place in town.

Having relocated from Hoi An, Vietnam over a month ago, Blaise Montandon is no stranger to Malaysia and Asia. He has been to Melaka and Sabah previously for brief holidays and worked for two decades in the Asian continent.

Enthusing over the vibrancy of Kuala Lumpur, Montandon is eager to get acquainted with our multi-cultural society, and explore the diverse food scene.

Hailing a small Swiss town, young Montandon became enamoured with hotels whilst holidaying with his parents around the country and in neighbouring regions. “I was fascinated by the energy, the glamour, and the opportunity to meet people from around the world. I knew this was what I wanted to do!”

After graduating from the Hospitality Business School in Lausanne, he studied management at the University of Lausanne before cutting his teeth at two reputed hotels in Geneva.

Since then, his hospitality career path has taken him to Singapore, Japan, China, Thailand and India, alongside stints in Europe and North Africa. His last outpost prior to KL was at Four Seasons Resort Hoi An (The Nam Hai).

His appointment as General Manager of FSHKL sees Montandon moving to an urban environment. “It’s completely different from Hoi An which is a resort, so I’d be drawing on my strengths and diverse experiences as a hotelier to see what I can bring to this Hotel.”

Montandon cherishes the time spent in Hoi An as it gives him great satisfaction to see how the various stakeholders collaborated and worked together to come up with distinctive products and services, the way his opening team members grew and developed, and how they managed to create different experiences for their guests.

He says: “There will always be different challenges for new and even existing properties. Otherwise, life will be boring. Sometimes challenges can arise from people, the product, or the location. You’d have to understand your clientele, the market, and the situation. For instance, when I was at the Four Seasons Hoi An, we have to open and close thrice during the pandemic.

“It was a difficult time but it was also most heartening to witness the solidarity amongst the people and the community. We had the involvement of key team members throughout those trying times to keep things going. Thanks to the support of the resort owners, every team member was retained during the two-year pandemic period. Our team members were deeply touched as their livelihoods affected not only them but also their dependents.”

On his plans to make FSHKL as the preferred hotel in Kuala Lumpur, Montandon affirms he will need to get a thorough feel of the Hotel then delve into understanding the team, the market, and the local community better.

“I want international visitors to fall in love with this dynamic, kaleidoscopic city. This Hotel should be an active place in town – I want to attract the city people to come here: for lunch, for tea, to stay, and to celebrate any and every occasion.”

Conversant in French, English, German, Italian, and Dutch, Montandon admits he hardly gets a chance to pick up Asian languages. “I often speak English with local team members as it’s to help them brush up their English-speaking skills at work.”

On the personal front, Montandon can’t wait to immerse in the city’s gastronomic scene, especially its legendary street food. Also on his agenda: exploring the local arts scene through museums, galleries and events. A lover of contemporary and modern art, opera and musicals, Montandon finds experiencing new cultures through their art forms “reveal so much about a place and its people”.

According to Blaise Montandon, the best thing about being a Four Seasons Hotel GM is the strong values they uphold. “Our philosophy is simple: treat people like how you would like to be treated. We believe in and apply that core value to every level of our team. We want to create an indelible impression on our guests and make a connection with them so that when they leave, they will have lasting memories of their time spent at the Four Seasons.”

Tuesday, January 11, 2022


The popular adage ‘Health is wealth’ becomes increasingly significant with the advent of each Chinese New Year (CNY). 

When I received the two CNY Gift Boxes from Selangor Dredging Berhad (SDB) to welcome the Year of the Tiger, I found the thoughtfully packed contents: packets of Chinese herbs and soup ingredients, and herbal tea bags for the improvement of general wellness, a welcome change from the usual stash of sweet confectionery and festive treats.

This unique CNY Gift Box is derived from SDB’s One-Two-Boost programme created back in 2020 – a collaboration between SDB and Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) physicians, to develop a variety of prescribed herbal drinks and soups for healthier lifestyles.

In sync with the company’s corporate social responsibility (CSR) mission in creating employment opportunities for people with disabilities, CSR participants who comprise young adults – are coached and supervised throughout the packing process of the SDB CNY gift boxes.

Hence when you buy or receive an SDB CNY gift box, every single gift box is a testament of the careful handling, packing skills and coordination put in by this group of special CSR participants. This notable CSR initiative revolves around offering support to those young adults with disabilities while creating opportunities for them to acquire skills, to lead an independent life.

Each Chinese New Year Gift Box (RM98 per box) features:

·       1 packet Digestion Soup

·       7 Throat Soothing Tea Bags

·       2 packs Goji Berries

·       2 packs Longan

·       2 packs Red Dates

·       2 packs Chrysanthemum

·       6 pieces Tiger Ang Pow packets

Also available are Chinese New Year Herbal Gifts priced at RM30 each; consisting of ingredients to make Emperor Herbal Chicken and Taxillus Sweet Soup, together with Red Dates and Luo Han Guo. Each set includes 6 pieces of Tiger Ang Pow packets.

Other series of herbal soups and tea bags include:

  •       Immune Booster soup series and drink packs for boosting immune system by strengthening the digestion system
  •        Nourishing ‘bazhen soup’ series to enhance immunity, increase metabolic rate and improve blood circulation.
  •       The Green series with a range of fat loss tea, beauty tea bag, heat relief easy tea bag and heat relief family pack to maintain good liver functionality and detoxification purpose.
  •       The Red series to maintain a healthy heart with a selection of calming soup and calming tea bags.
  •       The Yellow series comprising ingredients for digestion soup, energy booster soup, and spleen purification soup, together with energy booster tea bags
  •        The White series for healthier lung functions with a selection of ingredients for lung nourishing soup and throat soothing teabags.
  •       The Black series comprising revitalizing tea bag and ingredients for Taxillus sweet soup, to strengthen the kidney and liver.

To buy the SDB Chinese New Year Gift Boxes, hand-made soap and anti-epidemic brick soaps, call hp: 018-2201865 or email: or visit the One Two Boost Store:


Monday, September 13, 2021


“Szechuan” Ma La Mung Bean mooncake anyone? Or perhaps a summer-inspired Mango with Lotus Seed Paste variant? These inventive conversation stoppers along with baked and snowskin creations form part and parcel of Yun House’s Mid-Autumn Festival cachet this year.

Trust Chef Jimmy Wong to imbue the traditional mooncake with a core of zingy-hot ‘ma la’ filling. When you bite into a wedge of his “Szechuan” Ma La Mung Bean (RM42), your tastebuds will tingle pleasantly when the sensation of burning heat blooms on your tongue before the confection's sweetness gradually creeps in.

Since gifting and sharing mooncakes is a beloved Malaysian tradition, Chef Jimmy has taken great pains to craft a variety of inventive and timeless selection for the Four Seasons Hotel Kuala Lumpur in conjunction with the Mid-Autumn Festival.

“This year, the ritual has taken on added importance, since many of us haven’t been able to meet loved ones and close colleagues for a long time”, said Chef Jimmy Wong. “Sending and gifting mooncakes expresses our good wishes, to remind people we care about them and a gesture to value their presence in our lives.”

His Baked Mooncakes with luxurious fillings include Pu Er Tea Paste with Tangerine Skin (RM42) and the summer-inspired Mango with Lotus Seed Paste (RM42). The former is subtly sweet with the citrus peel lending it a nice ‘bite’ while the latter yields a sublime candy-sweetness, remarkably similar to the fruit itself.

 According to the chef, mooncakes with egg yolk are symbolic of the harvest moon and good luck hence his Pandan Paste with Single Yolk (RM42), and Lotus Seed Paste with Single Yolk (RM42) offerings. For purists, there’s White Lotus Seed Paste (RM42).


Overall, the timeless selection are on-point and should please sticklers for tradition.

The mooncakes come packed in the Four Seasons gift box. Clad in theatrical red with a magnetic gilt clasp, the oblong box is embossed with the floral outlines of lotus leaves and butterflies, evoking feelings of joy and harmony with nature.

For more information, contact Four Seasons Hotel Kuala Lumpur:

Friday, March 26, 2021


A more accessible location with expansive views of the verdant KLCC park and water fountain heralds the ‘homecoming’ of Nobu Kuala Lumpur to the Four Seasons Place Kuala Lumpur.

Having called the Menara 3 Petronas home in the last six years, the swanky new Nobu Kuala Lumpur now flaunts an all-new Sake Room, a state-of-the-art kitchen and several light-filled private dining rooms designed to elevate the dining experience.

According to General Manager of Nobu Kuala Lumpur, Gopi Kanala, the restaurant can seat up to 200 guests but following new norm SOP guidelines, it can seat 130-140 guests comfortably. “Situated in the city’s lifestyle hub means our emphasis on the experiential aspects includes being more child-friendly.”


Conceived as an experiential haven for both connoisseurs and newbies, the 12-seater Sake Room will set the stage for immersive food and sake matching experiences; counting among its drawcard a sake from Hokusetsu, Japan that's brewed exclusively for the Nobu Group.

“We have three private dining rooms with a total capacity of 60 persons for small and medium scale events,” says Gopi. “Thanks to our accessible location, and new and improved features, Nobu KL will be the ideal venue for both private and corporate events.”

Over at the impressive state-of-the-art kitchen outfitted with Malaysia’s first and most advanced exhaust system, Executive Chef Philip Leong and his team prepare Nobu’s renowned Japanese-Peruvian specialities for guests to enjoy. Complementing their culinary efforts is Head Sushi Chef Chico and his team over at the Sushi Bar who will have their hands full handcrafting sushi to order.

Cocktails and mocktails should be part and parcel of your gastronomic experience at Nobu KL. The inventive and extensive drinks list especially the cocktails are not to be missed; just seek the friendly resident Bar Captain for recommendations to suit your tastebuds.

Our media preview opened with a sampling platter of Oysters with Nobu Sauces, Yellowtail Sashimi with Jalapeno and Sashimi Salad with Matsuhisa Dressing.

Served with yuzu and lemon juice, and a dot of Peruvian chilli paste, the plump Japanese oyster was utterly sublime. A baby green peach then cleansed our palate with its fragrant, juicy sweetness.

Then we savoured yellowtail sashimi with jalapeno, served tiradito-style; a typical Peruvian way of anointing slices of raw fish with drizzled yuzu soy sauce. Sliced jalapeno and fresh coriander added heat and herbaceous finish to round off the fish's succulence.

Conceived as a salad of sorts, the sashimi salad featured tuna tataki wrapped in red leaf lettuce with Matsuhisa dressing (chopped onion, shoyu & black pepper). Rich and flavourful, the whole ensemble primed the palate in eager anticipation for the subsequent courses.

Should you be keen to pair the sashimi courses with a cocktail, try the highly recommended Seasons in the Sun – a “Summer” concoction of Hokusetsu Junmai ‘Sado No Shu’, GH Mumm Grand Cordon, Elderflower Syrup and Calpis.


We were reminded of the arrival of spring and sakura season when the dainty servings of Foie Gras with Yuzu Marmalade on Sakura Monaka appeared. Adorned with micro greens, the heavenly morsels of seared goose liver and yuzu marmalade were enticingly presented on airy-light sakura-shape wafer shells.

The high point was the Nobu Style Sushi selection especially it included kohada (gizzard shad) – a delicious, subtly briny and vinegar-marinated silver-skinned fish, kanpachi (yellowtail) with coriander, Japanese baby snapper with wasabi salsa and tender scallop with spiced herb.

As expected, the signature Black Cod Miso left us in rapturous delight with its savoury-sweet symphony and sensuously ethereal texture. Any residual richness was tempered by the accompaniments of pickled ginger stem and candied apricot on the side.

Served medium rare, the on-point Angus Beef Tenderloin Truffle Teriyaki proved Nobu Kuala Lumpur’s readiness in cutting a swathe in the city’s dining scene.

To herald its return, a decadent creation of Nobu Cheesecake with Raspberry Cream on Sesame Crumble, accompanied by a delightfully refreshing scoop of Yuzu Strawberry Sorbet seemed most befitting to wrap up our meal on a sweet note.

For reservations at Nobu Kuala Lumpur, call tel: 03 2380 0028 or WhatsApp: +6 019 389 5085. ADDRESS: L4A-05, Level 4A Shoppes at Four Season Place, 145 Jalan Ampang, Kuala Lumpur. 

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