Sunday, February 25, 2018

Hotel Review: Element Kuala Lumpur - Tallest Green Hotel in Malaysia!

Want to feel reenergized after your staycation? Element Kuala Lumpur, the tallest green hotel in Malaysia, has all the elements to help you do so, thanks to its healthy food options, eco-friendly practices and outstanding fitness options.

Our recent family staycation at Element Kuala Lumpur was the perfect opportunity for us to educate our children and help them understand what it means to be green, all while having a super fun time together!

First of its brand to set food in Malaysia, Element Kuala Lumpur stands proudly at 275-metre high in Ilham Tower, one of the tallest, most iconic buildings in Malaysia designed by the globally acclaimed Foster+Partners. The Green Building Index (GBI) certified hotel is built green from the ground up with eco-friendly practices, natural light, open spaces and captivating views.




Upon arrival at the hotel, you can proceed to the hotel lobby located on Level 40. Soak in the panoramic views of the KL city skyline while the staff check you in.




The hotel features 252 well-appointed guest rooms in a range of spacious configurations from studio units to three bedroom suites. Our Two-bedroom Skyline Suite on the 49th Floor offered an incredible amount of space for our family of four, along with an amazing view of the world-famous Petronas Twin Towers. Follow us on a room tour here.

Sleek and modern, natural light pours into the suite, thanks to the large windows in every room. The suite is designed to feel like comfortable, urban residences. Our suite comes with a massive open concept living area, kitchenette and dining area. I loved lounging here and admiring the beautiful views out the window. At night, you can even can watch the KLCC Lake Symphony water fountains from your room window.




There is a 55" LED TV in the living area as well as master bedroom and complimentary Wifi throughout the hotel.


The kitchenette is well-equipped with energy-efficient appliances such as fridge, microwave oven, hob, pots and pans, utensils and Cafes Richard coffee machine, and there is also a separate utility room with a washing machine.



As part of their green initiatives, the hotel does not provide plastic mineral water bottles - this is to reduce plastic wastage. Instead they provide NSF certified filtered drinking water in each room (water from tap is safe for drinking). Furthermore, to aid in water conservation, towels will only be replaced if left on bathroom floor or bed linens if the green card is left on the bed and bathrobes are only available upon request. The hotel rooms are also 100% smoke-free.

The master bedroom comes with plush, ultra comfortable king-sized signature Heavenly bed. The kids had a separate bedroom, with twin beds as well as huge wardrobe and a working desk. Every single room here is so spacious and inviting.





The spa-inspired master bathroom comes with organic bath amenities and is bright and lovely with white marble tiles, separate shower and bathtub. Adjacent to the living area is a smaller bathroom with toilet and shower.





Breakfast is served daily at the hotel's all day dining restaurant, TRACE Restaurant & Bar. Priced at RM70 nett per person, get off to a healthy start to your day with the chef's special granola, fresh juices, waffles, pastries, dim sum, eggs and noodles.




Every weekend, Afternoon Tea is given a modern, artistic twist at TRACE. Arteastry is a unique afternoon tea combining elements of art, tea and pastry, complemented by fantastic KL skyline views. A super fun, interactive afternoon tea. Read our detailed review of Arteastry here.





TRACE also serves lunch and dinner and is committed to supporting local farmers and serving fresh, local produce, thus reducing the carbon footprint. The menu is a mix of Western and local eats, and there is also a Sharing is Caring section, perfect for feasting with family and friends. We highly recommend the Certified Angus sirloin 120-days grain fed (RM168), Beef it Up pizza (RM49) and Spring Greens Seafood Spaghetti (RM52) from the dinner menu. Read our detailed review here.







One of the many highlights of our stay was being able to go for a swim anytime of the day. That's because Element Kuala Lumpur comes with an indoor heated saltwater swimming pool on Level 39.

Rain or shine, it's always a good time to swim. The 200sqm swimming pool uses saline instead of chlorine which is safer for the environment and for those swimming in itDon't forget to look up because the pool has a glass ceiling too! Very cool :) For fitness buffs, there is also a gym and exercise rooms in the same floor and the hotel also offers complimentary yoga classes for hotel guests.









You can easily explore the vibrant city, using the Ampang Park Light Rail Transit (LRT) which is literally at Element Kuala Lumpur's doorstep. We took the LRT to the the next stop (KLCC) which took under one minute and explored Petrosains in Suria KLCC with the kids, for a fun, educational day out. Highly recommended for families with young children - allocate 3-4 hours time for your visit here. 



Thanks to Element Kuala Lumpur for having us!




Check-in time 3pm, check-out time 12 noon. Room rates start from RM340 for studio room.

Location: Element Kuala Lumpur, Ilham Tower, 8 Jalan Binjai, Kuala Lumpur, 50450, Malaysia. (Parking RM15 per entry)

Tel: 03-2771 3388

Website: http://www.elementkualalumpur.com/

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Friday, February 23, 2018

Recipe: Easy Sugar-Free Banana Muffins (Baking with Kids)

So, we recently harvested not one, but TWO hands of bananas from our garden... which left us with a whole load of bananas ripening at the same time! 

Since it's the school holidays, I decided to get the kids into the kitchen and make some banana muffins together. This recipe has been adapted from Nigella Lawson's How to be a Domestic Goddess cookbook - it's a stir and bake recipe; super easy and quick and perfect for kids! Furthermore, no sugar is added into this bake, making this a healthy teatime treat!


Easy sugar-free banana muffins





Please enjoy this short video starring BabySumoKids...it's great seeing them so confident in the kitchen! If you'd like to see more videos from us (especially from the kids), do support us by subscribing to our YouTube channel and liking our videos. Thank you! :)





Easy Sugar-Free Banana Muffins
Recipe by Baby Sumo
Preparation time: 15 minutes
Cooking time: 25 minutes
Makes 12-13

Ingredients
60g salted butter
2 tbsp honey
1 tsp vanilla bean paste or extract
12 small ripe bananas
2 cups plain flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
A pinch of salt


1. Preheat oven to 190°C (no fan).

2. In a saucepan over medium low heat, melt the butter. Once melted, add the honey and vanilla bean paste and mix well. Leave to cool for 5-10 minutes.

3. Peel and mash the bananas using a masher. Add the butter mixture from Step 2 to the mashed bananas and mix well.

4. In another bowl, mix the plain flour with baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and salt.

5. Add dry ingredients (from Step 4) into the wet ingredients (Step 3) and fold gently until the ingredients are just mixed. Do not overmix.

6. Fill the paper cups until they are about 2/3 full and place into a muffin tray.





7. Place muffin tray into preheated oven and bake for 25 minutes. Leave in the pan to cool for 5 minutes, then remove to a wire rack and cool for another 10 minutes.

Note: We used pisang mas (small bananas), which you can substitute with 4 large ripe bananas.





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