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A WOMAN'S DIARY

Enjoy your life today because yesterday had gone and tomorrow may never come, so live life to the fullest.

A WOMAN'S DIARY - Enjoy your life today because yesterday had gone and tomorrow may never come, so live life to the fullest.

The eagle has landed : TGV Cinemas arrived in East Malaysia

TGV Cinema Grand Launching Ceremony @ Permaisuri Imperial City Mall

TGV Cinemas, one of Malaysia’s leading exhibitor and multiplex cinema operators, welcomed patrons to the official grand opening of TGV Cinemas Permaisuri Imperial City Mall. This historic opening marks TGV Cinemas’ first cinema in East Malaysia.

Permaisuri Imperial City Mall is strategically located in the centre of Miri central business district. PICM is positioned as the only ‘premium shopping mall’ in Miri that houses over 130 units of retails shops including TGV Cinema. One of the unique feature of PICM is its linkage on 1st and 2nd floor by a ‘sky bridge’ designated as ‘food avenue’ connecting to the existing 23 storey 4 star Imperial Hotel and the Imperial Mall with its anchor tenant, Boulevard Hypermarket and Departmental Store.

YB Datuk Lee Kim shin, Assistant Minister of Sports and Communication Sarawak

The official launch was officiated by Assistant Minister of Sports and Communications Sarawak  YB Datuk Lee Kim Shin, Mayor of Miri City Council Lawrence Lai, Chief Executive Director of Boulevard Group of Companies Ling Chion Sing, Chief Executive Officer of Boulevard Group of Companies Don Yew Hoon and Chief Executive Officer of TGV Cinemas Gerald V Dibbayawan.

Mr. Gerald V Dibbayawan, CEO of TGV Cinemas

Exchanging of memento between the Guest of Honor and TGV Cinema CEO

The cinema has eight cinema halls with total of 1263 seats. All halls are fitted with the state-of-the-art Dolby Digital sound system and Christie CP2220 digital cinema projector system that generates sharper and brighter 2D and 3D images. TGV Cinemas Permaisuri Imperial City Mall also able to play not just standard 3D but also high-frame-rate 3D (HFR) which is suitable for action packed movies. In addition to that, the first row of hall has been fitted with the iconic beanie seats to make the viewing experience even more fun.

Front row – Beanie seat at TGV Cinemas Permaisuri Imperial City Mall

Bag of goodies with drink and popcorn for TGV Cinema grand opening guest

The launch of TGV Cinemas Permaisuri Imperial City Mall coincides with the release of the Disney animation blockbuster ‘Cinderella’ on March 12th.

I was given the opportunity to cover the grand opening of TGV Cinema Permaisuri Imperial City Mall (punya lah panjang nama cinema ni :p) under the ‘Media’ team. We were also invited for screening of the newly release movie of ‘Cinderella’ after the press conference.

Nicely labelled seating by the organiser

Cinderella screening free movie pass

Group photo : Sarawak Bloggers team together with Cinderella & Prince Charming

Thank you TGV Cinemas for the complimentary pass ;)

Thank you to Nandini, PR Executive of TGV Cinemas Sdn Bhd for the opportunity covering the event.

Thank you to the Miri based bloggers. You guys such a great team to work with.

Last but not least, thank you to Sarawak Bloggers for opening the door of many more such opportunities for bloggers to unleash their blogging skills and knowledge.

BORNEO JAZZ 2015 CELEBRATE ITS 10TH BIRTHDAY

Year 2015 marks the tenth anniversary of the Borneo Jazz Festival in Sarawak. The two-day exciting festival of Jazz music will be celebrated on Friday, May 8 and Saturday, May 9 in the Resort City of Miri.

The organizer, Sarawak Tourism Board proudly presents the best performers’ lineup promising the festival to be a hit celebratory note by bringing back favorite performers from the past years from different countries to celebrate a decade of Jazz by the sea.

Syafiee Obe & All The Best (Sarawak) – pic credits to Sarawak Tourism Board

The performing bands will cover a wide range of jazz genre from all over the world. From the local scene, “All The Best”, a five-piece ensemble with Miri-born Syafiee Obe Hairunie, who is also the conductor of the Kuching SONS Jazz Orchestra to lead the local challenge. It parades contemporary jazz with a twist of Malaysian flavor with added Latin rhythms.

Favorite international performers on stage this year will be one of the most on demand jazz pianists from the Spanish Blues scene, Lluis Coloma, boogie-woogie at its most inspired. Louis Coloma at the piano will dislodge all the keys with great big happy smile.

Lluis Coloma (Spain) – pic credits to Sarawak Tourism Board

The Dirty Dozen Brass Band from the United States of America, sparkly exhilarating and featuring exuberant traditional brass band from the rich jazz traditions of New Orleans. The Dirty Dozen revolutionized the New Orleans brass band style by incorporating funk and bebop into the traditional New Orleans jazz style.

Dirty Dozen (USA) – pic credits to Sarawak Tourism Board

From Perth, Western Australia, Diamond Dave and The Doodaddies are a four-piece Chicago style Blues Band offering a solid selection of uplifting grooves covering swinging shuffles, soul, boogaloo, ‘cry in your beer’ blues and more.  The Doodaddies proves not only that the roots of the blues are strong and far reaching, but the future of the blues is bright.

Diamond Dave & The Doodaddies – pic credits to Sarawak Tourism Board

Jump4Joy, the Swedish high energy entertainment with a strong New Orleans flavor brings their music kind of feel-good energetic toe-tapping sounds from the stage.

Jump4Joy 4 (Sweden) – pic credits to Sarawak Tourism Board

Mo’Blow from Berlin, Germany, is more towards energetic spicy groovy funk. After hearing Mo’Blow you will think differently about their country of origin because Germany is not exactly known as the home of soul and funk jazz.

MoBlow (Germany) – pic credits to Sarawak Tourism Board

Other popular jazz band listed for this decade of celebration is The Nylons, a cappella jazz group from Canada. They are well known for their dazzling harmonies and slick stage performances.

The Nylons (Canada) – pic credits to Sarawak Tourism Board

And finally, Anthony Strong from United Kingdom, hailed as “England’s new jazz superstar” after Gregory Porter, Michael Bublé and Harry Connick Jr. raised to become the No.1 on iTunes and No.2 on the www.amazon.com jazz charts in the USA.

Anthony Strong (UK) – pic credits to Sarawak Tourism Board

For intending festivalgoers, they are encouraged to check out for attractive promotional offers and discount tickets to be announced on the festival website at www.jazzborneo.com for latest offers and discounts.

To encourage visitors coming and to explore the destination, the organizer is also working with various tour agencies to package the festival with wide array of local product experiences.

At the festival site, festival goers will be able to enjoy a variety of local and international cuisine, purchase of souvenirs as well as local handicrafts during the festival to help the local business community to integrate and be a part of the event and contribute to the local economy.

The host city, Miri, the gateway to Northern Sarawak is also a destination that has lots to offer to visitors. From budget hotels to 5-star accommodations, from adventures at sea and to the mountains, it has all. Visitors who are at the Borneo Jazz are encouraged to extend their stay and explore the Mulu National Parkthe only UNESCO World Heritage site in Sarawak.

The event scheduled in May, in conjunction with celebration of the Miri City Day. It is a month-long of celebration and the best time to plan and visit the area.

The Sarawak Tourism Board (STB) will continue to incorporate the tree planting campaign as part of the festival corporate social responsibility program and as a contribution to the city’s greening efforts. Other than the performing bands, various government organizations, Universities and Colleges will be invited to be part of the event for bigger and better impact. STB will take pride in incorporating the elements of greening at the venue.

Borneo Jazz has grown steadily since its first edition in 2006, going from 3,000 spectators to nearly 8,000 in the last year. This growth is a reflection of the success of the festival and the growing appeal of jazz enthusiast around the region.

Festival tickets is available online at www.jazzborneo.com. Fast updated information through Twitter account @SarawakTravel or Facebook at Sarawak Travel.

Borneo Jazz is one of Major Event lineup for ‘Malaysia Year of Festival – MyFest 2015’. Organized by Sarawak Tourism Board, supported by the Ministry of Tourism and Culture Malaysia and Ministry of Tourism Sarawak and endorsed by Tourism Malaysia.

2nd Asia Music Festival 2014: Thru My Naked Eye & Thought

Media group photo with Minister of Tourism Sarawak rep. (pic credits to Sarawak Tourism Board)

‘20 cents’ general point of view
Once again, Miri city resonated with the sound of music. In the 2nd Asia Music Festival, it featured an electric mix of live music from all over Asia on stage. It is indeed an honor to cover the event for the 2nd time under the wing of Sarawak Bloggers. All this made possible because of the organizer confident and support from Sarawak Tourism Board especially to the ‘MAN’ who’s taking care of the media group, Mr. Gustino and his team mate, Hishammudin and Catherina. Thank you, terima kasih, Xiexie, Merci and Arigato. :)

One of the festival objectives is to attract Asian expatriate community working at neighboring Brunei, local Bruneian themselves, neighbors’ from Sabah and Peninsular Malaysia as well those from Singapore, Indonesia and other region. Apart from that, it is also hope that the festival can boost up number of tourist in the month of October which is seen as the low peak season in the northern region of Sarawak. Obviously, this is a brilliant effort made by the state government. Kudos!

Arthur, Miri own local tattoo artist in action (pic credits to Sarawak Tourism Board)

For the record, the music festival does not only offer a carnival atmosphere but also offer fringe event alongside it. Variety of Asian food, handicraft, festival memorabilia and the one that attracted lotsa attentions was the tattoo booth. This is where tattoo enthusiasts would get their ‘tattoo fix’ or some even get themselves a brand new tattoo. Some of the performers even get theirs done during the two days event.

Performer Line-up
This year, the organizer, Sarawak Tourism Board invited DrumCall (Sarawak), Pisco (Taiwan), Masia One (Singapore), Pancake 80 (Philippines), Salammusik (Malaysia), Misaluvi & Motion Family (Miri), SoulMate (India), Restrospect (Thailand), Mad August (Malaysia) and Ras Muhammad (Indonesia). Prior to watching the performer live performance, I did my own research by studying the group and their music genre hence high expectation was put on the line-up.

DrumCall from Sarawak (pic credits to Sarawak Tourism Board)

From a glance of the performer line-up, I kinda expected a better performances and bigger crowd turn out than last year. Unfortunately, it wasn’t to my level of expectation. Much smaller crowd turns out during the 1st day but it gradually has more turn out during the 2nd day (but still less crowd compared to last year crowd). I was expecting more hip hop and rapping numbers from Masia One but only to my disappointment, she presented more reggae beats instead. Then it escalate to Salammusik performances where again, get to hear reggae beats. Me no likey coz I had too much of it. I get bored easily when presented same/similar thing twice. However, the crowd loves it to the bits. To my surprise, seems that Mirian love reggae beats.

Masia One from Singapore (pic credits to Sarawak Tourism Board)

Asraaf of Salammusik from Malaysia (pic credits to Sarawak Tourism Board)

Restrospect from Thailand (pic credits to Sarawak Tourism Board)

Same goes with the 2nd day performances. Too much of head banging (like I said, too much of it, I’ll get bored easily). By putting Restrospect and Mad August (both group plays rock genre) performance one after another with similar music genre, I don’t see it maintain the momentum going but kinda turn it off a little especially to ‘aunty and uncle’ group like me however it does work just fine for the youngster group whom some of them are in alcohol overdose mode, dancing and head banging all night in front of the stage. Somehow, it does change my view on thrash cum metal cum hard rock numbers performed by Restrospect upon listening to their live performances; it is such an eye opener and life changing for me.

Indeed, music is a universal language where it unite all walks of life regardless the languages used be it Chinese, Malay, Indonesia, English or Thai, everybody are enjoying it. It was a harmony and peaceful music festival. I hope it remains that way for as long as it takes.

Sarawak Bloggers team among the crowd (pic credits to Sarawak Tourism Board)

Seeing and being in a live performances gives a totally blown away experience than watching live performances in tv.

DJ RoundHead in action (pic credits to Sarawak Tourism Board)

This year also, DJ gig was featured for the 1st time. Once crowned as ‘Malaysia DJ Champion’ for 3 consecutive years, DJ RoundHead gets to spin his array of music’s during break between each band of both nights. I did a random survey among the crowd and asked their thoughts on the DJ gig. All of them liked the idea of the DJ gig as it does keep the party mood going till the end of the show. Good job there, Nicky. ;)

One of the food stall (pic credits to Sarawak Tourism Board)

The venue & food
The musical corridor is what it is known and this is where the main stage located. It is practically a huge floating platform with a swimming pool on it. The main stage, the food stalls and the fringe booth are located on it. With the greeneries of the golf course and forest looming in the horizon, it is indeed an enchanting venue for music cum carnival festival. Array of food cuisine from all over Asian countries are on sale, same goes with soft drinks and alcohol which obviously monopolized by the hotel itself (except for Carlsberg kiosk as it is one of the main sponsor).

It is understood that be it drink or food are at its ridiculously high price in any music festival but one thing that I dislike the most is the coupon system implemented by the hotel. Reason being is when you can’t spent the entire coupon (a booklet of coupon is at a value of RM10), you either just threw it away or spent it on something that you don’t need for the sake of spending the balance (maybe that’s the whole strategy, yes?). Perhaps the hotel should consider of using cash transaction in next year music festival (convenient to the public) and work on a customized cash flow mechanism for internal auditing, yes?

Out of curiosity though, why is it when purchasing alcohol from the bar, the coupon system doesn’t apply?

Behind the Scene: The Sarawak Bloggers team
Being the coordinator for the team, one of the challenges is to recruit good Miri based bloggers. My definition of good blogger is as in committed, responsible and flexible in their roles. I find it bit difficult to identify active and good Mirian bloggers and that made me approached the same team whom had covered Borneo Jazz Festival event on last May. This year, new member joined the team whom is fondly known as Miss Alvy. She’s the youngest team member by far.

The Sarawak Bloggers team of Day 1 & Day 2

Work Smart Play Hard

Nobody owns a blog if they do not have any passion and enthusiasm in blogging hence when it comes to covering an event like this, it is treated as a serious matter. For Asia Music Festival, it took me nearly a month shortlisting potential blogger candidate albeit the self-paid expenses on phone bills and electricity bills on calling them up, email correspondences, meet up sessions, purchasing new gadget/accessories and not to mention transportation and food expenses incurred along the way. All of these made possible under the name of VOLUNTEERISM and PASSION.

Sarawak Tourism Board CEO, Dato’ Rashid Khan with the Sarawak Bloggers team (pic credits to Pei of A Sharing of Mine)

Shame on those that think can simply engage blogger to cover their event without paying any dime. Blogger had bills to pay too, you know. By the way, the collaboration between Sarawak Bloggers and Sarawak Tourism Board is based on good will.

I am lucky to have such a sporting, supportive and understanding blogger team who shared the same belief and objective where volunteering to us means putting the experience not only helping someone or an organization, the chances to create network, it is also a platform to develop communication and public relation skills. No doubt, you have to sacrifice your time even came out exhausted to the bones but you do had a great time.

We’ve done our going green part by planting a mahogany tree

Mind you, we the bloggers do have our own due date posting our post on any covered event. As a matter of fact, these post of mine, kinda late post (due to work commitment-lame excuses I know) but due to responsibility and commitment hence the post that you’re reading now.

Having that said, if you are one of my loyal readers, you would notice this post is slightly different than my norm of event posting. That simply because you can experience the journey from the bloggers team and below is their sharing for your reading pleasures. ;)

AdjayMagic of The Day

Miss Alvy

Aloms Frame Box

Love Hate

Elena Aradia

A Sharing of Mine

Through Fabian’s Glance

My media pass

The Perks
Sarawak Tourism Board really takes good care of the media group which consists of international and local music journalist, magazines, radio and tv station. Media centre is the place where the media group get together not only for their daily updates from the organizer, press conferences with the performers, archive of event photos taken by appointed official photographer, daily wrist tag collection not to mention stuffing us with food and drinks, it is also the place where one can update their blog, news, interview instantly with the provided computers and internet connection services. It couldn’t get any better than this. The media group is indeed well pampered.

AMF 2014 2 days of wrist tag – Blue for 1st day & Purple for 2nd day

AMF 2014 Freebies – Powerbank that comes in black & white, I chose White ;)

Sarawak Bloggers team with reps from Borneo Bulletin, Brunei, Traxxfm of RTM and Sarawak Tourism Board

Up close personal with Ras Muhammad, The Ambassador of Reggae from Indonesia. The coolest and longest dreadlocks hair I ever seen of which he had kept for 14 years.

It is the event organizer, Sarawak Tourism Board’s hope to set the event to become another iconic music festival for Sarawak after the success of Rainforest World Music Festival. For that, I like to quote Sarawak Tourism Board CEO, Dato’ Rashid Khan’s remarks during one of the press conference of which I twitted that goes;  “Start prudently and over the years, it will build up”.

I couldn’t agree more to that, sir. I am very sure over the years to come, Asia Music Festival will indeed build up its name and to achieve that, it requires everybody contribution and support. That is you and me.

Cheers. ;)

FREE SHUTTLE SERVICE TO ASIA MUSIC FESTIVAL 2014

AMF2014 Free Shuttle Service

Eastwood Valley Golf & Country Club, the venue of Asia Music Festival will offer free shuttle bus service to the event venue on both festival days Friday 3rd October and Saturday 4th October.

Shuttle bus service operated by the Eastwood Valley will be made available free to shuttle festival attendees to Asia Music Festival or just to reach their golf club and hotel property located at Jalan Miri by-Pass. According to Rebecca Wong, Eastwood Valley’s Director of Marketing, shuttle bus will leave Eastwood Valley every hour from 5:00pm until 9:00pm. This bus will drop off and pick up at the Boulevard Shopping Complex (entrance next to KFC), Imperial Shopping Mall (lobby entrance of the hotel) and Bintang Mega Mall (mall main entrance, near Coffee Bean).

The first schedule that runs from Eastwood Valley at 5:00pm will first reach Boulevard Shopping Complex approximately around 5:15pm, then Imperial Shopping Mall around 5:30pm and Bintang Mega Mall around 5:45pm. The shuttle bus will then return to Eastwood Valley and will continue its service for 6:00pm, 7:00pm, 8:00pm and 9:00pm before returning to Eastwood Valley at around 10:00pm.

The major purpose of this service is to provide easy access to festival goers to attend the 2 day festival and at the same time to ease traffic congestion at the venue.

The festival organizer, Sarawak Tourism Board who is promoting “greening the festival” program is also encouraging festival goers to use this free shuttle service to reach the venue while reducing the carbon foot print. “Festival goers are encouraged to help and put into practice the greening effort as their small but worthy contribution to save the environment” says Dato’ Rashid Khan, CEO, Sarawak Tourism Board.

At the inaugural event last year, the event drew more than 3,000 people over the 2 days of the festival. The 2nd edition of Asia Music Festival this weekend will feature artists from Asian countries namely from India, Philippines, Taiwan, Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore.

The festival will also add a DJ gig into this year’s program by featuring  Malaysian famous DJ Roundhead who will be playing an array of famous dance music at the post-festival late show on both nights which will last until 2:00am. Festival gates open at 5:00pm both Friday and Saturday.

Other than music, the festival will also incorporate a range of Asian food namely from Korea, Thailand, Taiwan, Indonesia, Philippines, Japan, India, Malaysia and more. The Festival will continue to feature a tattoo exhibition which has attracted more tattoo experts this year from Indonesia and Philippines.

Entry tickets to Asia Music Festival is currently on pre-sale offer at only RM25 for adults and RM10 for children/student (aged 3-18). Visit the websitewww.asiamusicfestival.net to purchase online. Tickets also available at Visitors Information Centre in Miri (+6 085-434180), Kuching (+6 082-423600) and Sibu (+6 084-340980). Door-sale tickets are priced at RM30 for adults and RM15 for children/students.