Hotel Review: Khaoyai Terrazzo

I am halfway done drafting the last day of our 3D2N road trip to Khao Yai with our pre-booked driver from Bangkok. I wasn’t in charge of accommodation this time round. As I was busy from work weeks before the trip, Sister took charge of accommodation. Despite so, I had shortlisted a few hotels in Khao Yai for reference but Sister suggested that we go economical with accommodation.

This was the only picture which I had of the hotel exterior look. Mom photo bombed my picture at the time when this picture was captured. The hotel provides ample parking spaces for hotel guests. The car park could fit about 10 cars, I think? Aside from foreign tourists, the hotel housed quite a bit of local tourists too during our stay.

This is the lobby of the hotel whereby all check-in and check-out procedures are performed. Please note that the check-in desk is only available until 7PM. If you will be having a late arrival, do inform the hotel in advance so that they can arrange something out of the standard check-in time. Check-in and check-out procedures were a brisk. Passports are required at the time of check-in.

Dining area is also located in the lobby area. Breakfast is provided complimentary by the hotel on every morning from 7AM until 10AM. Breakfast was simple but adequate. The kitchen serves minced pork porridge and American Breakfast. Honestly speaking, I’m not a porridge person myself but their minced pork porridge was good.

Upon seated, one of the staffs will approach and ask the kind of eggs preferred for American Breakfast. They have sunny side up and scrambled. Aside from American Breakfast and minced pork porridge, they serve wholemeal bread slices with bread toasters stationed next to the bread storage container. Butter and jam spread are provided too.

Beverages wise, they provide 3 in 1 instant coffee sachets, tea bags, milk and orange juice. All in all, I was impressed with the breakfast spread despite it wasn’t as comprehensive as the ones I had before.

Sister booked a Triple Room whereby it came with a double bed and a single bed. We even have a small balcony with green view. Air-conditioning wasn’t centralized but built-in split unit in each and every room. The room may looked small in the picture but it was actually big enough for the three of us with ample space to store our luggage.

This is the bathroom with heated water. The toilet came with basic toiletries like hair shampoo, hair conditioner and body wash gel. I like that they provide enough towels for everyday use. Some accommodations provide only one big towel per hotel guest.

Verdict: I like the customer service of the hotel staffs. They were helpful and polite. On our first day in Khao Yai, we went Pak Chong Night Market for dinner. With limited seating available at the night market, we resorted to bringing our food back to the hotel. The receptionist was kind enough to allow us to use the dining area and even provided us food utensils.

Free flow of hot and cold drinking water are available all day round from the water dispenser machine located in the lobby. The housekeepers replenished three bottles of mineral water in our room every time they make up the room. I liked that the brand of drinking water which they use didn’t come with a weird taste as compared to the other brands of drinking water which I had tasted throughout my trip in Thailand.

The mattress was stiff in my opinion which led to bad sleep throughout my stay in Khao Yai. Mom however loved the stiff mattress and slept soundly throughout the trip. LOL! The hotel is conveniently located nearby to a 7-Eleven, Mu Si Night Market and a local restaurant in within walking distance from the hotel entrance. However, we later found out that there was no self-service laundry service in the hotel itself but couldn’t be sure if there is any laundry service nearby the hotel.

Khaoyai Terrazzo
125/1 Moo 5,
Mu Si,
Pak Chong District,
Nakhon Ratchasima 30130,
Tel: +66-876911999

17022018 / Khao Yai Day 2 (Part 2)

After we had completed the winery tour at PB Valley Winery, we headed for lunch at The Great Hornbill located at the lobby of the said winery. The Great Hornbill is one of the highly recommended restaurants around Khao Yai. The restaurant was jam packed with tourists enjoying lunch before and after the tour at the time we were there.

Moo 5, Mittaphap Road, Tambon, Amphoe, 102/2, Phaya Yen, Pak Chong District, Nakhon Ratchasima 30320, Thailand

There were three dining areas allocated for The Great Hornbill. They had two indoors dining areas and an outdoor one whereby you get to enjoy a large green landscape view while having your meal. All the dishes on their menu came stated with recommended in-house wines to pair with their food.

As we intended to go for an early dinner at Baan Mai Chay Nam Museum & Restaurant in the evening, we ordered lunch in moderation. So, we got two appetizers and a main course to share.

Passion Fruit Juice | ฿70 

Cream of Mushroom Soup | ฿140

This was seriously good. It was creamy and you get to bite into mushroom chunks at the same time. I liked that it wasn’t creamy with excessive of cream content. The garlic bread was spot on as well and paired so well with the soup.

Avocado Salad | ฿280

avocado and zucchini salad  with crab stick, shrimp roe and creamy dressing

Sister went clean eating with their Avocado Salad and requested for the dressing to be served separately. The greens were fresh and crispy at the same time. All the greens were locally home grown.

Phad Thai Goong | ฿280

fried rice noodle with prawn, egg, bean curd, bean sprout, red wine Phad Thai sauce and grounded peanuts

As Mom is a noodle person as compared to rice, we got her Phad Thai Goong to which she couldn’t finish. Both Sister and I helped ourselves with the large prawns on her palate. LOL! The large prawns were fresh. The flesh were juicy and yet tender at the same time. The main highlight of the Phad Thai Goong was the red wine Phad Thai sauce in my opinion. It was spicy enough for my liking. We got to bite into halved grapes in the noodle. The texture of the rice noodle was well done and had the slightly chewy texture which I love.

After we were done with our late lunch, we left to look for our driver and moved on to the next attraction of the day. On the way to The Chocolate Factory, our driver dropped us off at local produce market. All the produces were homegrown. They even have a kiosk selling ice-creams which I did not get around to try them as we just had our lunch at The Great Hornbill.

This was what I bought from the local produce market. It was the colors of the bread which caught my attention. It was retailed at ฿80 per packet if my memory serves me well and it came along with a small container of complimentary Thai Milk Tea Custard Spread which was more than enough for the six slices of bread. For your information, the purple colored bread was made of sweet potatoes and pumpkin for the yellow one. We had them for breakfast the next morning and they were good with soft and fluffy texture.

We moved on to The Chocolate Factory after the local produce market. The place was so crowded with several huge tourist buses parked at the roadside. We didn’t buy anything from The Chocolate Factory as we are way past the age for chocolate craving. LOL! However, we witnessed a bit of how the chocolates were made.

The chocolates looked so good but the pricing was steep as well! We toured The Chocolate Factory for a short bit before returning to the car for the last destination of the day – Baan Mai Chay Nam Museum & Restaurant for dinner. The place is famous among the locals and foreigners. You get to see antics which you probably had never seen before. What’s so special about the said restaurant aside from the antics bit is that you get to enjoy dinner with a river view in spite that the color of the river may not be appealing at all!

21, Mittaphap Road, Tambon Pak Chong, Amphoe Pak Chong, Nakhon Ratchasima, 30130, Thailand

PS: Baan Mai Chay Nam Museum & Restaurant is a non-Halal restaurant as pork and liquors are served. 

You can choose to explore the place before or after meal. The place is extremely spacious with different antics at every corner of the place. Even the washrooms were decorated with a magical feel. They were not like the typical washrooms you had seen in the other restaurants.

“Marilyn Monroe” with flying dress at the entrance into the restaurant. A part of the restaurant was decorated to be an arcade whereby you get to play with the games stationed.

Before entering the restaurant, we got a table number from an usher located before the entrance. That piece of paper is a printed number of your table. We got Table 28 but it was occupied at the time we got to the table. So, we moved to Table 26 instead.

Without further ado, let’s get started with the food pictures.

Anything served at Baan Mai Chay Nam Museum & Restaurant is chargeable. They charged ฿30 for a bucket of ice. Mom actually requested for a few pieces of ice cubes to cool down her burning tongue but the waitress came with a bucket instead. Both Sister and I ordered this glass bottle of Coke to share as it looked so old school as compared to the tin ones that we were accustomed to.

Tom Yam Goong | ฿200

First dish to arrive at our table was their Tom Yam Goong. It was extremely spicy for our taste buds. They were generous with the shrimps. The shrimps were fresh too. Despite the spiciness which was beyond my regular threshold, I find it addictive and kept going back for me in spite of the coughing after every few slurps. LOL!

Fried Rice | ฿150

fried rice with shrimp/pork/crab/chicken/gourami fish/fermented pork

The restaurant serves Fried Rice in three sizes – small, medium and large. We went for medium as large would be too much for the three of us. We had our fried rice with pork. The rice was well flavored with the “wok hei” that I love. However, it was tad bit oily for my liking. The pork slices were extremely tender.

Prawn Cake | ฿150

It was Fish Cake which we ordered but it was Prawn Cake which arrived. At first, we thought that their version of Fish Cake was different compared to the regular ones that we got from the night market. The filling was sweet (not sugary kind of sweet), soft and juicy.

The Prawn Cake paired really well with the sweet chili sauce dipping. Despite that Mom always complained about mouth ulcers for having deep fried food, she couldn’t help herself and ate quite a fair share of the Prawn Cake. So, you know they were good!

Deep Fried Pork Belly with Basil Leaves | ฿180

I was looking for Thai Basil Chicken but couldn’t seem to find this specific dish on their menu. I asked the waitress what dish do they have that comes with basil leaves and this was one of those which she recommended. It was good in spite of the oiliness. The sauce was slightly spicy but the aroma from the basil leaves was good!

This fluffy little creature greeted us shortly after we walked out of the restaurant. The owner even tied tiny knots of ponytails on the top of her head. She doesn’t seem to be shy among strangers and even walked to strangers waiting to be petted. She would take a few steps forward every few minutes with four legs sprawled on the floor like the picture above.

So, this pretty much summed up our second day in Khao Yai. Do stay tune for our last day in Khao Yai.

Review: Jia Xiang Wi Shi Fang

Mom and I left home early yesterday morning to run some errands at the temple. We left home before 8AM and came back 10 minutes to 9AM as I needed to use the washroom. We then left home again at around 9:20AM and dropped by at a family friend place for CNY visitation. The weather didn’t look promising in the morning and started to drizzle as we were on our way to Kiulap for Jia Xiang Wi Shi Fang.

Jia Xiang Wi Shi Fang has been around for some time but I didn’t get around to try out the said restaurant until yesterday. Jennifer tried out the place some time last month and recommended me to do so as well. As Dad wasn’t back from hometown yet, I told Mom not to cook lunch or dinner. So, we sorted our brunch at Jia Xiang Wi Shi Fang.

The restaurant was pretty crowded at the time we walked in but we managed to secure a table for two almost instantly. The decor of the restaurant was Taiwanese old school kind of theme with polished cement flooring instead of tiles. Mom commented that the place would look more clean cut if they had tiled the flooring. But then I guess it’s the old school kind of look which they were after instead of clean cut?

Without further ado, let’s get on with the food pictures!

Teh Tarik (Hot) | B$1.20

Braised Rice Pork Bowl | B$2.80

What’s Taiwanese food without their signature Braised Rice Pork Bowl? The minced pork was well braised in my opinion but tad bit salty to eat on it’s own. Do pair the braised minced pork with rice to neutralize the saltiness. The minced pork came with a side of pickled salted vegetables and quartered braised egg.

Gua Bao | B$2.00

Jennifer highly recommended me their Gua Bao the last time she visited Jia Xiang Wi Shi Fang. The mantou was stuffed with a slightly thick cut braised pork belly, some pickled salted vegetables and coriander leaves. The mantou was soft and fluffy in my opinion. However, the texture turned slightly floury at some point of eating. I love their braised pork belly. It had melt in the mouth kind of texture.

Hokkien Noodles | B$3.80

Mom wanted to try their Claypot Yam Noodle and share it among the two of us. To be honest, I’m not much of an egg noodle person. So, she ordered this Hokkien Noodles instead which I only had a small bowl myself and she polished the remaining herself. Flavoring wise, it was not bad and topped with some deep fried bits which I don’t know of as I didn’t get to try them.

Pork & Chives Dumplings | B$4.80

I had wanted to try their Scallion Rolls but they were unavailable until 11AM or noon. The waitress can’t confirm either. Jia Xiang Wi Shi Fang serves dumplings with three different kinds of fillings to your selection – pork & chives, pork & Chinese cabbage and mixed vegetables. Mom had wanted to go for pork with Chinese cabbage at first but decided to go for pork & chives after much consideration. LOL!

The dumpling fillings were generous in my opinion and they were well marinated. A plate of dumplings came with 10 pieces, accompanied with thinly sliced gingers and black vinegar dipping sauce. I loved the dipping sauce as it was sour enough for my liking.

PS: Jia Xiang Wi Shi Fang is a non-Halal restaurant as pork is served. 

Jia Xiang Wi Shi Fang
Unit 1F, Block F,
Setia Kenangan 2,
Simpang: 150-17, Kampung Kiulap,
Bandar Seri Begawan,
Negara Brunei Darussalam
Tel: +673-2230329

17022018 / Khao Yai Day 2 (Part 1)

We started our second day in Khao Yai early and arranged our driver to pick us from Hotel Khao Yai Terrazzo at 8:30AM. Breakfast was served complimentary by the hotel. They served both minced pork porridge and American Breakfast with egg of your choice.

Our first attraction of the day was Baan Suan Noi also known as Hobbit House. Baan Suan Noi is the imitation of Hobbit House in New Zealand. According to Sister, there were some comments on TripAdvisor that Khao Yai’s version of Hobbit House was better than the original one in New Zealand.

Entrance fee for Hobbit House was ฿100 per person and an additional ฿50 per person for costume rental if you’re interested. We weren’t interested in costume change so we only paid for entrance fee. We were early that day with not much tourists in the area. Shortly after we arrived, two hired vans arrived carrying two large groups of tourists.

Local fruit seller outside Little Santorini. LOL! For your information, there was a Little Santorini at Hobbit House. According to Sister, there is another Santorini inspired theme park in Thailand which was a lot bigger than the Little Santorini we had at Hobbit House.

We ended our Hobbit House tour at Little Santorini and proceeded to our next destination of the day – The Bloom. Entrance fee for The Bloom was ฿100 per person.

As the weather was hot, they even provided complimentary umbrellas for rental while you toured around The Bloom. The three of us brought our own umbrellas from home as we didn’t want to get sunburnt. There wasn’t much pictures of myself at The Bloom as it was too hot to properly enjoy the scenery and position myself for a nice picture.

We exited The Bloom as soon as we were done touring the area and headed to PB Valley Winery. Anthony had pre-booked us for a 70 minutes PB Valley Winery tour at ฿320 per person. The tour fee includes hands on information of the process of wine brewing and wine tasting.

After the explanation of how these wines were brewed, we were led to a room for wine sampling. We were required to present our entrance tickets for the wine sampling. I am allergic to wines so I passed the chance and went for non-alcoholic drink provided for the kids. LOL!

One ticket entitles you to three wines’ sampling – one white and two reds. I had a sip of the white wine from Sister’s and found it too dry for my liking.

On the way back to the lobby of PB Valley Winery, the driver stopped for us to take pictures of the grapes. As it was past harvest season, the numbers of grapes on the vines were limited. According to one of the tourists from our bus, the grapes were too sour despite being told not to pick the grapes earlier on. LOL!

It was almost 3PM by the time we were done with the tour. We were starving by then as we didn’t get to have lunch before the tour. We settled for lunch at The Great Hornbill located at the lobby of PB Valley Winery. Food review will come in the next blog entry. Do stay tune if you are interested!