November 29, 2010

So, this is what luxury holiday means....

I once stayed in the local Ritz-Carlton as a wedding anniversary getaway with my wife where it claims that it has a 24-hour butler service. Although they do attend to my whims nearly the whole time we were them, their efficiency and claim they are available all the time, was a bit untested as we were in the mood of being left alone than being attended to.

Then, I was asked by a long lost friend whom I just recently got reacquainted to come and join her at a Villa in Phuket. She did asked me whether I can get away in the middle of the week, and as I can do that, I did. Off I when to Phuket with a one-day lead time with my wife.

Basically, it was heavenly. The place is nice. More than nice. We have a cook (two actually) who will attend to us everytime we were in the villa. We have a concierge who arranged everything. A driver. Basically, I now know how royalty lives. Oh, and there were 2 English Lords are actually living within the Estate. 

The villa is 3 storeys, has 5 bedrooms, a family room, a swimming pool on the top floor, a billiard table, a ping pong table, a massage pavilion, iPod docking stereo units everywhere, a kitchen and 2 kitchenettes.

We had a massage on the morning of the second day. We went horse riding, which was a first for both of us. We played mini-golf. We ate seafood, with my wife eating a RM123-00 lobster as big as her head. Basically, we just had a very, very short luxurious getaway. Don't get me wrong, only the villa is paid for. The other expenditure, we do have to foot the bill ourselves.

And it was fun to live like royalty.... It is a big industry here in Thailand which offer villas and full service apartments and hotels for tourist and vacation clubs. Basically, it is hassle free, as long as you have the money.

November 23, 2010

Photo-shoot for Transitions lenses

I was part of a seeding program for Transitions lenses which more information you can find out here. Don't ask me why I was chosen. I don't exactly remember when I was given this opportunity. I think it was 6 months ago that I received an e-mail asking me whether I want to be part of the seeding program  for Transitions lenses. I received a letter stating which spectacles vendor was chosen as vendor for me to book the lenses. I went there and the shop assistant was clueless as to the program. Only when I showed the letter did they agree to do it for me.

It was sorted soon enough and although I had to pay for the frames, I consider it quite a saving as I found out these Transitions lenses can be quite expensive. So, I got my spectacles after a month as the chosen vendor did a bad job in cutting the lenses for the frames and it had to be re-cut a few times. I did advised them to stop being too honest as I didn't expect the lenses that early as I had just picked-up a new spectacles which has clear lenses and wasn't too eager on a new one. And this is the reason I am not mentioning the vendor's name here.

I finally managed to get the lenses after nearly 2 months and I worn the spectacles ever since. What I love about it is that it is really clear when there is no UV light. However, at first, I just couldn't see the significant change when I go out under the sun. However, after some time, I get use to wearing it and I actually abandon all the other sunnies I have.

Then, a few back, I was asked to give a feedback and kinda model for them. Kinda...because I am not really sure where and how will they used my image. I do get something out of it but in kind more than in monetary value.

So, here are some pictures from the shoot... (feeling a bit vain)

November 16, 2010

Proton's Asia Pacific Rally Championship (APRC) 2010 win

Watch this video by APRC TV and see what Proton has been up to lately :

As the jury is still out about the latest Proton model, Inspira, which is a re-badged of Mitsubishi Lancer, it seems that Proton does have hope in other part of the world. Motorsport that is. With Alister McRae and Chris Atkinson in different cars, Proton managed to get a One - Two podium finish at the China APRC Rally. Both of them used Proton Neo which is the current wanna-be rally racer choice of Malaysian highway, if you ask me.

If you listen closely to the youtube video, it would have said, "the new Proton team" which shows that Proton did made an impression in the APRC rally circuit as they managed to secure that podium finish. Proton still has a long way to go as they need to win at least the Asia Cup to be more noticeable but this is a great way to start.

Whatever comments or any feelings you have on our first national car maker, Proton, I think they do have vehicle models they should emphasise more like the Proton Neo which is quite popular among urban youth. Everyone knows that the first car that most working adult  in Malaysia  would buy when they start to work is a Proton. So, don't deny they do makes life easier for the average Malaysians.

So, why don't we applaud them for a job well-done.

p/s : I too think the Inspira is a Mitsubishi rip-off but it is still a good business coup by Proton.

p/p/s : All photos and video are from FIA Asia Pacific Rally Championship website.

November 9, 2010

Peugeot 207 : A car to rival those other B-segment sedans out there

On November 3rd, I was given the opportunity to go and see the launch of the new sedan by Peugeot. Peugeot 207 was launched with a simple ceremony but had a few dignitaries like Malaysia  former Prime Minister (who was kept being mentioned as The Fourth Prime Minister) and a few representatives from Automobiles Peugeot like Mr. Gregoire Olivier who is their CEO of Asian Operations. Tun Dr. Mahathir was the one who launched the event and lauded Nasim Sdn Bhd as one of the successful AP vendor which came good and became a car producer itself other than a car distributor.

Peugeot has given the rights to distribute Peugeot brand in Malaysia to Nasim  Sdn Bhd and Peugeot 207 is the first Peugeot to be produced in Malaysia. Malaysia will also As well as Malaybe Peugeot manufacturing hub for the region. sia, there is plan for it to be exported to other right-hand drive Asian market like Thailand, Brunei, Indonesia and Sri Lanka. According to SM Nasarudin SM Nasimuddin, CEO of Nasim and Joint Group Executive Chairman of the Naza Group of Companies. Peugeot 207 will be exported immediately and will be featured at 2011 Bangkok International Motor Show. The target is for a sale of between 5000 to 6000 units within 2011.

What is the feature of Peugeot 207?

It has a 1.6L engine, leather-wrapped steering wheel, automatic air-conditioning with pollen filter, an instrument panel made by luxury-watch maker, Jaeger, a multifunction display, sensor-activated automatic headlights and wiper.

Other than that, it has an MP3/WMA CD player with USB and auxiliary functionality connected to a six-speaker system, Bluetooth connectivity which can be paired with a handphone, semi-bucket front seats, a boot with 420 liters capabilities and of course the sleek body design of Peugeot which has 15-inch Interlagos alloy wheels. 

In term of engine, it has a 1.6L engne which produces 110 hp at 5,800 rpm and 149 Nm of torque at 4000rpm. It has hydraulic variable power steeringwith a four-speed adaptive automatic transmission which comes with Tiptronic capabilities so it can be manually driven. It has a sport mode transmission and even a traction mode to provide more grip on slippery surface. Fuel consumption which is at 6.1-liters per 100km (mixed cycle) is quite good.

It also has ABS, electronic brake distribution, emergency brake assist, 2 smart airbags, a rolling code immobilizer, 'follow-me-home' functionality for the front headlights and auto-hazard warning lights upon sudden and heavy-braking. 

For me, with the price of RM72,888-00 on the road price, this is a value-for-money car and as the title said is a car to rival those other B-segment sedans car out there.

November 2, 2010

P1 Wimax : Stronger, Wider, Faster

As a 2-year old company, P1 or its real name, Packet One Networks (Malaysia) Sdn Bhd has really made advances which they can be proud of. If you look at their offerings under a microscope, of course, they have warts and all, like any other company, but as someone who had been given a chance to associate myself with them since early 2009, during the launch of their mobile broadband called Wiggy, I have a tendency to view them favourably. I actually bought their stocks in the hope of making a profit like what most people would have said when they see Microsoft or Apple Inc. then and now.

So, on 20th October, a few days before the the ad campaign could be seen in all media around town, especially the newspaper, we got a bit of a preview. It is to launch a new offering by P1 where you can subscribe the home and mobile broadband together in one package. With the tag of Getting Stronger, Wider and Faster with kids wearing superhero costumes and saying words like Getting Stwonger and such, it shows kid of 2 years old doing amazing things. The all-in-one 4G 'Super Broadband' package also comes with a 'Super Quota' which can be shared between the two.

P1 Wimax also re-brand itself to be known as P1 4G now to show that it is offering 4G connectivity. As this is published, you would have seen the new ad campaign and it will be on billboards, monorails, print medias, radio and TV. They did address the voices of a few unsatisfied customers within the hall that day in which they admit some of their shortcoming and they also acknowledge the growing competition of broadband deployment. For more information, do visit

Here are some pictures from the event which ended with us having dinner on the rooftop of P1 HQ :

November 1, 2010

Keeping to my promise

Not to harp my own trumpet or anything but if any of you remember, I did promise to give RM0.50 of the sale of each of my book to a charity organisation which I had determined the moment my book was out in print. I did try to put an announcement on the book about it but after sometimes, I find it easier to keep it to myself and make sure I did it on my own effort. 

My wife and my partner are those who keep reminding me to make sure I keep to my promise and when I received my first royalty payment last August, I straight away calculated the amount I would be giving to Pertubuhan Misi Penyelamat Bumi, an NGO, led by Dato' Tan Kar Meng, a client and a friend, who had the best intention in trying to save the environment, especially the mangrove forest, using his own invention called the pillow tube.

Dato' Tan has always been one of the businessman who keeps to himself and is one of my business idol since the day I start to know him. As a client he is one of our best and as a friend, he is one of the most caring. Read about the man and his environmental effort from an excerpt from the Tatler magazine here and from his own company, Perwira Bintang, website here. My contribution is just a drop in the sea in contrast with what this man has managed to do. That is why I accepted the job of being the trustee to this NGO when Dato' Tan asked me too. I hope to contribute in some way, one way or another.

Here are pictures of him and I at Pertubuhan Misi Penyelamat Bumi headquarters in Sunway :

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