From the desk of Penelope Alice, Britain’s most fabulous PA – PA Life Club

From the desk of Penelope Alice, Britain’s most fabulous PA

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I like to get out and about, as regular readers of this blog will know, but usually I confine my travels to zones 1-6 of the TFL network. Last week, however, I was invited by the lovely people at Malaysia Airlines to jet off to Kuala Lumpur with a select group of other lucky PAs.

We were fortunate enough to get upgraded on the way over there, meaning I can vouch firsthand for the quality of the national carrier’s business class – swish doesn’t even begin to cover it! To be fair though, even in economy on the homebound journey, the fantastic on-demand entertainment system and copious amount of food and drinks served by the friendly air crew meant that the 13-hour journey simply whizzed by.

Malaysia’s capital really is a melting pot of cultures, you can tell by the different cuisines on offer – a rich mix of Indian, Chinese and indigenous Malay. We stayed at the centrally located, five-star Berjaya Times Square hotel, which boasts not one but two lovely spas, a pool and several restaurant outlets, including the fine dining experience, Samplings, where we feasted on quail and pumpkin soup with seafood.

The hotel is located right next door to the mall of the same name, which as well as being filled with floors and floors of great stores, perfect for souvenir shopping, is also home to Asia’s largest theme park – and yours truly just had to ride the longest rollercoaster in all of Southeast Asia!

Talking of shopping, Kuala Lumpur is certainly the place to bag a bargain, with tons of swanky malls like Suria KLCC, located underneath the city’s major landmark, the Petronas towers (pictured above), plus the Bukit Bintang district, as well as the colourful markets of Chinatown and Petaling Jaya, where haggling is de rigeur.

If you’re of a cultural persuasion, then there are plenty of sights to see: at the National Mosque they even give ladies a burqa to cover up so you can go inside and see this striking, geometric-shaped building close up. Another insight into local traditions is on offer at the Saloma Theatre Restaurant, where you can dine while you watch a dance performance that involves male and female dancers decked out in gloriously coloured costumes.

Until next time, I hope you all “progress and prosper”, as KL’s motto goes!