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Johor

What’s up “down south”?

I’ve not been to Johor for over seven years, and when the opportunity came up to visit this southern state, I made some preparations for the trip…but boy, nothing prepared me for how much this state has transformed in such a short period of time!

Legoland came to my mind as my first destination to visit in Johor, but I was also curious about what Desaru looks like now compared to my childhood days. I still remember it was the place my parents brought me to when I was a kid. Perhaps the visit will rekindle some childhood memories from back then.

I put up a couple of nights at Sand Sandals Desaru Beach Resort Spa, a relaxing resort where you can enjoy both the private pool and its beach. It’s the perfect place for those who love water activities as the resort can arrange for your parasailing or water-skiing sessions. Guests who are in the mood for some pampering can visit the spa to indulge in massages, body scrubs and reflexology.

 

A golf club – the Els Club Desaru (elsclubmalaysia.com) – is just a short distance away. Golfers can enjoy playing at either the 27-hole Ocean Course or the 18-hole Valley Course, both offering amazing views of the beautifully-landscaped surroundings. Although I’m not a golfer, I was impressed with the facilities, service and panorama of the golf courses. I just wonder whether it would be a “distraction” for golfers trying to put that hole-in-one!

Also within Desaru is the Malaysia Tourism Award-winning Desaru Fruit Farm (desarufruitfarm.com). Occupying an area of 100 acres, this thriving “garden” is planted with more than 100 varieties of tropical fruits such as durian, rambutan, guava, mango, “thousand fingers banana” and more. Visitors to the farm can go on the guided tour to learn about the farm’s agricultural and pest management practice, taste the fruits that are in season and learn about bee-keeping and honey-harvesting.

 My final stop was Legoland, where I could be a “child” again! Since it opened its doors in September 2012 as the first Legoland in Asia, it kept on introducing something new each year, keeping its attraction fresh and its fans coming back for more.

It was my first time there and I was kept fully occupied with the range of activities and fun engineered to keep visitors like me enthralled. The latest addition to the park is the Virtual Reality Coaster called The Great Lego Race which synchronises the visuals projected onto the VR headset with the roller coaster’s twists, turns, drops and climbs. Even if you’re not a Lego fan, being here alone will suddenly turn you into one!

Traveling around Johor this time around, I could see that the state is headed for a massive transformation with developments in Iskandar region, Desaru, Danga Bay and Forest City. The Desaru Coast project will become a new tourist attraction in the southern region of Malaysia with the opening of Desaru Coast Adventure Waterpark, and Desaru Coast Conference Centre as a business events venue. Premium-brand properties such as Desaru Coast Resort, Hard Rock Hotel and Anantara Desaru Coast Resort Villas, meanwhile, will set the tone for the region’s high-end holiday appeal.

I think another trip to Johor is in store for me once all this development is complete!

Article source: http://blog.tourism.gov.my/feed/

In Johor, Everything Is Awesome!

2016 is almost over and if there’s ever a time to pack up and leave with your family, it’s now! Holidays were made for us to unplug and reconnect with the people we love, especially our family. It’s also a time where anyone of any age can relax and unwind. Once in a while, we need to take vacations because we can always make a living but we can’t always make memories.  And what better way to make memories than in Johor

To make it easier, let us help you plan the perfect weekend trip to Johor!

Saturday

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Lego® Kingdom

Legoland; the name itself can awaken our inner child. A land where all our imaginations have been put to life. Once you step into the Lego world, you can’t help but to feel young again. The architecture, the rides and even the food will leave you wanting more. It is safe to say that Legoland is the perfect location for a family trip, especially if you have young children.

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KLCC – Miniland

One of the places that you’ll find yourself revisiting would probably be the Miniland. A few minutes wouldn’t be enough because you’ll be mesmerized by all the intricate details of each model. There’s a total of 18 iconic places that you can find in Miniland, such as Cambodia, Philippines, Brunei, Vietnam, Johor, Myanmar, Indonesia, Kuala Lumpur and many more.

Don’t forget to look out for the newly upgraded Miniland KL Cluster that features iconic architectures of the city such as Petaling Street, National Monument and Bukit Bintang. Over 3 million lego bricks are used to complete the upgraded KL cluster.

Don’t be afraid to zoom in because it’s even more amazing when you’re up-close.

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Lego® Ninjago™ World

End your day with a bang by getting a ride on Asia’s first 4D Indoor Ride! Ninjago is the newest edition to the Legoland rides and it certainly lives to its expectation. Many lined up to get a spot on their interactive ride and boy was it fun! You’ll have the chance to be heroes and defeat the “Great Devourer” (the main villain of the story-led experience) with your bare hands. Thanks to all new sensor technology, you’ll have full control of your actions, giving it a new meaning to indoor rides.

During the ride, you’ll be divided into teams of 4, each competing to see which team scores the highest. The rules of the ride are quite simple actually, you’ll only need to use your hands to guide the controls, aiming at the targets to engage. The ride takes about 3-5 minutes to complete but rest assured that every second you spend inside is going to be filled with fun.

Sunday

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Hello Kitty Town – Wishful Studio

Before leaving Johor, you should pay a visit to one of Legoland’s awesome neighbours.  Just 5 km away lies another attraction that your kids would definitely want to visit. Hello Kitty Town was built to put a smile on children’s faces. For girls especially, it’s practically a dream come true.

There’s a handful of fun activities to do inside, such as a taking a tour inside Hello Kitty’s house, watch performances on the “Purrfect Stage”, spin on their “Tea Cup Rides” and many more. The best of all is probably the “Wishful Studio”; where we get to create our own Hello Kitty themed souvenirs such as the Hello Kitty Handkerchiefs and Hello Kitty Cookies!

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Thomas Town

Hello Kitty town might not sound that appealing to the boys but thankfully there’s another famous town that is just upstairs! Thomas Town is located on the top floor of the building and they have more rides compared to Hello Kitty Town, such as the Knapford Station Thomas Train Ride, Colin Crane Drop ride, Bertie the Bus and many more. You’ll definitely have fun when experiencing the Bumping Buffers Steamies Diesels Ride aka bumper cars!

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Other Characters – Barney Live Show

The fun doesn’t stop there, there’s also other characters such as Angelina Ballerina, Pingu, Bob The Builder and Barney. Throughout the day, there are live performances on every level so your little ones can meet all their favourite characters. Children have the chance to sing, dance and interact with characters that they usually see on TV. What a treat!

Since tickets for Hello Kitty Town and Thomas Town + Other Characters are sold separately, we suggest that if you prefer more rides and other interactive activities, Thomas Town + Other Characters would be a more suitable choice. However, we recommended that you obtain the “All Park Access” so your children won’t miss out on any of their favourite characters.

Here are some friendly tips to make your trip easier:

1.Buy your tickets online to avoid waiting in line.

2. If possible, use your own transport so you’ll be in full control of your activities.

3. Arrive early.

4. Bring water bottles, snacks, hats and hand-fans.

5. Visit the souvenir stores as the last stop to avoid extra baggage.

6. Bring EXTRA clothes in Legoland because there’s going to be some water games.

Book your tickets now and get ready for the time of your life!

Article source: http://blog.tourism.gov.my/feed/

Your Ultimate Malaysian Golf Adventure

Imagine teeing off from the perch of a mountain, across a jungle filled valley to a green nestled adjacent to the sea. Just you, nature and a strip of land so beautifully cultivated that your challenge of putting that tiny white ball in that little hole is no longer a part of golf, but an adventure.

Golf in Malaysia offers an experience like no other. With over 100 courses to choose from — many in places you never thought possible — Malaysia is the perfect place for your next golfing getaway. Here’s a guide to the most breathtaking golf courses across Malaysia.

 

Shan-Shui Golf and Country Club
Where: 15 kilometres from Tawau town, Sabah

Golf in Borneo is a match made in heaven. This 18-hole championship course sprawls majestically amidst the mountainous backdrop of Tawau’s rich land in the state of Sabah. The undulating terrain and lush surroundings also serves as a natural habitat for wildlife such as exotic birds, monkeys, squirrels and a resident crocodile. Opened in 1998, Shan-Shui quickly rose to fame courtesy of its 15th hole — The Creek — named as one of the Best 500 holes and Top 250 par 4s in the world by US Golf Magazine. It was also awarded the “Best course in Asia” by Golf Monthly magazine in 2000.

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Cameron Highlands Golf and Country Club
Where: 10 minutes from Cameron Highlands and 3 hours from Kuala Lumpur
The forest-clad mountains of the Cameron Highlands form a spectacular backdrop to this panoramic golf course, providing what is probably the coolest and most pleasant golfing environment in Malaysia. The fairways are wide and forgiving and coupled with the thinner air – the ball travels faster and further – a round here is quite relaxing. The course is not without its challenges, particularly the 15th hole with a dramatic elevation drop of 100m. The course is open to the public, too.

Cameron Highlands Golf 02Photo source

 

Els Club Teluk Datai 
Where: 40 minutes drive from Langkawi International Airport
This Ernie Els piece of mastery was voted World’s Best New Golf Course at the inaugural World Golf Awards in 2014. Prior to Els’ renovations, The Golf Club Datai Bay was already considered the Most Scenic Golf Course in Malaysia by Asian Golf Monthly and is often labelled Asia’s best golf course. Its website says it all, “Welcome to Golfing Paradise”. You’ll be greeted by breathtaking vistas of marbled mountain peaks, virgin rainforest and the emerald-green Andaman Sea. And if that’s not enough, the Els Group is opening two more courses in Malaysia just for your enjoyment; the spectacular Desaru Coast and the sublime Desaru Valley, both in Johor.

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Hornbill Golf Jungle Club
Where: About 70 kilometres from Kuching, Sarawak
Another gem from Borneo, this time in the state of Sarawak. Hornbill offers a true paradise for avid golfers with its brilliantly designed 18-hole layout perched high in the Borneo hinterland. “Golfing in the Clouds” is quite literally the theme, with guests often hitting from above the canopy down into the mist of the valley below. The climate is more friendly too, making it a popular all-year choice for golf vacationers.

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Saujana Golf Country Club
Where: Shah Alam near Subang Airport, Selangor.
The crown jewel of Malaysian golf. Offering two 18-hole championship layouts just 20 minutes from the heart of KL, Saujana is a must for all élite golfers. “Deadly but beautiful” and “Jungle golf at its best” are just some of the adjectives used to describe this beast. The Palm course hosted the Malaysian Open between 2001 and 2005, with champions including Thongchai Jaidee, Vijay Singh and Arjun Atwal. The second hole on the Palm course is among CNN Travel World’s 18 most beautiful golf holes.

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Awana Genting Highlands Golf Country Resort
Where: Genting Highlands, 55 kilometres from Kuala Lumpur
Set at 3,100 feet above sea level, Awana provides a new experience for the golfer. While not on the same par as Saujana, this masterpiece nestled elegantly in the Genting Highlands is a refreshing getaway from the hustle and bustle of city life. But don’t expect an easy stroll around the high country; the fairways are narrow with anything slightly off target sure to find thick jungle or the many water hazards.

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Royal Perak Golf Club
Where: Ipoh, Perak
Ipoh Golf Club, as it was originally known, is one of the oldest courses outside of Britain and along with Royal Selangor is an icon of Malaysian golf. Formed in 1879, it started as a humble nine-hole course on the race course in Ipoh. It was destroyed during World War II — used as a tapioca farm — and was only restored its current state in 1947. Although not as breathtaking as some of the other courses on this list, it certainly makes up for it in history and prestige.

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Photo source

 

If you want to know more about the best golf courses in Malaysia, please visit www.playmalaysiagolf.com

 

Article source: http://blog.tourism.gov.my/feed/

A Journey Through Phantasmagoria Royal – Floria Putrajaya and Magic of the Night 2016

Royal Floria Putrajaya, Malaysia’s leading annual flower and garden festival, and Magic of the Night 2016 saw Putrajaya come to life among a sea of colour and vibrant lights.

Almost 740,000 people — the majority young families enjoying the first week of school holidays — attended the May 27 to June 4 event, with organisers aiming to showcase Putrajaya as the ‘City in a Garden’ or ‘City of Flowers’.

The theme for this year’s event was ‘Chrysanthemum’, with entrants unveiling a series of never-ending floral arrangements featuring carnations, spider lilies, roses and millions of chrysanthemums, which exploded in colour, interspersed with unique, locally created works of art.

Hundreds of creative exhibitions from government sector, corporations, schools, universities and independent artists were vying for 28 awards under four categories covering gardens, flowers, design and water-colour painting, with organisers commending the improvement in design concept, work standard and quality of planted materials from last year.

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For the second year running, DBKL was awarded the FLORIA Putrajaya Garden Cup Trophy for their elegant arrangement and design that again garnered the most attraction. During the awards ceremony, Royal Floria Putrajaya also entered the Malaysia Book of Records for the tallest glutinous rice exhibit. The 7.15m structure was erected jointly by Putrajaya Floria Sdn Bhd and the Putrajaya Community that operates the Heritage Village.

Other notable exhibits included the Chrysanthemum Garden and Candy Courtyard. These featured a mesh of natural arrangements interlaced with mechanical structures that gave a modern twist to your simple floral decoration.

Malaysia’s royal families also did not fail to impress with the Johor royal family presenting a beautiful replica of their palace and royal crown taking home the Gold Award for their display.

There was even a section designed to resemble the ancient Chinese royal court, which housed the Magic of Bonsai and Suiseki exhibit. These were living works of art, which had taken years of cultivation, pruning nurturing and sculpturing.

The Magical Garden, which housed the Mystical Forest and Mermaid’s World, was a unique combination of projected images employing holograms and the latest technology to create spectacular visuals and serene backdrops.

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List of highlights included:

  • Magical Garden featuring Mystical Forest and Mermaid’s World
  • Chrysanthemum Garden and Candy Courtyard
  • Floral Pavilion featuring the Tree of Life
  • The Magic of Bonsai and Suiseki
  • Terrarium: Magic In The Glass
  • Special Gardens
  • Government and Corporate Gardens
  • Gardens of Malaysia
  • Designer Gardens
  • School and University Gardens
  • Cat’s Pavilion
  • Arts and Crafts Bazaar
  • Horticulture Market and Garden Bazaar

The Magic of the Night 2016 was again undoubtedly the star attraction with thematic barges representing each Malaysian state in a beautiful, neon-lit parade wowing the masses.

Sabah entrant

The boats featured colourful lights and handcrafted three-dimensional designs of indigenous flora and fauna. The more creative and elaborate displays included traditional dancers as well. The Sabah float in particular was a standout promoting the region’s native rainforests, hornbills and orang-utans.

The boats were stationed on the Putrajaya Lake under the Putrajaya Bridge which was lit with multi-coloured flood lights and lasers. The evening ended with the nightly fireworks display.

Royal Floria Putrajaya flower and garden show and Magic of the Night 2016 was a spectacular event showcasing the many colours and personas of Malaysia. It is perfect for families, couples or just a peaceful night out. Be sure to check it out in 2017!

Head to http://www.floriaputrajaya.com.my/ for more information.

 

Article source: http://blog.tourism.gov.my/feed/

IMPRESSION CITY BY END 2017

Yong Tai Berhad : bullish on Impression City
     
02/24/2016 | 03:12 am
KUALA LUMPUR: YONG Tai Bhd expects its RM5.4 billion project in Malacca to generate net profit margin of 20 per cent, which would help to sustain the company’s earnings in the long term.

The garment maker-turned-property developer, which has been loss- making for several years, expects to return to the black this year with contribution coming from the real estate sector.

The company, which has pockets of developments in the Klang Valley and Johor, is planning to develop Impression City on a 47.03ha site in Malacca.

The project would be developed in 11 phases and over 10 years, said its executive director Boo Kuang Loon.

Construction for Phase 1 would start in the third quarter of this year and feature retail and commercial units, said Boo at a luncheon hosted by MIDF Amanah Investment Bank Bhd, here, yesterday.

It is expected to have a gross development value of RM1.1 billion,

The catalyst for the commercial-led Impression City is the Impression Melaka performing arts theatre, to be built on the 47.03ha site.

Construction of Impression Melaka, the jewel of the company, will start next month at a cost of RM300 million and includes land acquisition. The opening is slated for end-2017.

Boo said although Impression Melaka required a huge capital investment, the returns would be long term and attractive.

It would take two years to construct and the projected returns would start from 2018 onwards, he added.

With 15 million tourists visiting Malacca annually, Yong Tai hopes to attract at least 1.1 million visitors to Impression Melaka, with 40 per cent coming from China.

The company is also targeting visitors from Southeast Asia (30 per cent), Asia (20 per cent) and the rest from the Middle East, Europe and the United States.

“With two shows a day and tickets priced at RM120 per person, we are poised to achieve a revenue of RM140 million a year, including the sale of souvenirs and merchandise. For this business, we are targeting a profit margin of 50 per cent. This would net us a profit of around RM60 million a year.

“There are many more upsides, such as increasing the ticket prices and having up to four shows a day. This is the potential of Yong Tai in the future,” said Boo.

“For the next two years we are at the investing stage and would generate profits. But the profits would not be much to give dividends,” he said.

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