When I was in Melaka, I took the opportunity to try out the chicken rice balls at a restaurant in Jonker Street. I am not a fan of chicken rice balls because the rice balls are quite hard and it is almost tasteless. Personally, I still prefer the chicken rice that are selling in Singapore because the rice is fragrant, soft and fluffy. The distinct advantage of eating chicken rice balls is that it is not oily at all; unlike the normal chicken rice that is normally oily in nature. Anyway, there are many chicken rice food outlets in Melaka, and I have chosen the so called famous chicken rice shop in Jonker Street. It was chosen not because the food is that great, but because I enjoy the ambience of this restaurant.
I have chosen 2 individual plate of chicken rice balls – a white chicken and a roasted chicken rice ball set meal. Besides that, I have also ordered a bowl of fish ball soup. If you do not liked chicken rice balls, there is also the normal chicken rice that is available. The chicken rice balls that were served were lukewarm in temperature. That is a turn off for me; as I prefer rice that is hot. There were 5 chicken rice balls in each individual plate. Though the rice balls looked small, it is definitely sufficient for most of us. I have seen people ordering additional chicken rice balls and not being able to finish it later. There is really not need to order so much rice balls because it would be better to order other side dishes such as vegetables, wanton or fish ball soup.
The chicken that were served were reasonable in quantity and taste. There is nothing great about it and as I had mentioned earlier, I still think the best chicken rice is in Singapore. I really enjoyed the fish ball soup as it was simply delicious. I could taste and smell the fish as I put in it my mouth; and that is what fish balls should be. The red chilli sauce that was given was also very nice – strong and distinctive in taste. The lemon and lime juice that were served came in a small plastic cup with more ice than juice was a complete let down – I should have just ordered coke instead. The price that I paid for a meal for 2 was less than RM25.
When I do return to Melaka again on my next visit, I intend to try out other chicken rice balls outlet – hopefully the taste and food variety offered would be different. There are also chicken rice balls food outlets outside Jonker Street. I have seen one of them in a coffee shop which was also quite crowded during lunch time. Perhaps this coffee shop served delicious chicken rice balls and I would try it on my next visit.
I went for a short trip to Melaka recently and stayed in the new Marvelux hotel for 2 nights. This hotel is located along Jalan Syed Abdul Aziz and is quite close to the popular Bei Zhan restaurant – about 10 minutes walk from the hotel. There are quite a number of taxi drivers who does not know the exact location of this new hotel and this was the problem that I faced during my stay there. So I told them that it was near Bei Zhan restaurant and at the traffic light junction of this restaurant, just turn right and drive straight – the stretch of reclaimed land is on the left and the hotel is on the right – facing the reclaimed land.
Marvelux is a small boutique hotel with about 100 rooms. The check in was smooth though it would be nice if the staff at the counter could perhaps smile more, be friendlier and looked less stern. The lobby was quite spacious and the theme colors were orange, white and green; which I felt that it was nice and soothing. I have booked the normal superior room for my 2 nights stay in this hotel. The superior room was small but there was sufficient space to put your luggages and to move about in the room. The unique feature of the room was the spacious balcony where there was a nice view of the sea. It would be better if the hotel could placed a small table and 2 chairs on the balcony; so that the hotel guests could sit and relaxed on the balcony during the evening. The toilet was small but it was clean and there were only basic toiletries given. So do remember to bring your own toiletries when staying in this hotel. There was a kettle and some tea/coffee bags but there was no mini fridge in the room. The bed and pillows were clean and comfortable; and there was also a LCD TV mounted on the wall facing the bed.
At the moment there was only one restaurant in this hotel and it is called The Windmill Station Western Food restaurant which served western and local food. So if you do not wished to walk or take a cab to go elsewhere to eat, then this is the only place where you could have your meal. Because surrounding this hotel there was practically nothing – no cafe or restaurant, no shops, no malls; just empty reclaimed land. Taking a cab was also a problem as there was hardly any cab around – you need to ask the hotel staff at the counter to book a cab for you. The mimimun charge even for a short distance is RM$15. Alternatively, just walked to Bei Zhan restaurant, and along the stretch of road next to this restaurant, there are a few food outlets over there. I have tried walking from Marvelux hotel to Jonker Street and it took me about 40 minutes to reach there. Along the way while I was walking, I am able to see lots of interesting small shops selling many variety of items and food. But be prepared to sweat it out as it can be quite a hot and perspiring experience.
On the whole I find Marvelux hotel is nice place to stay. The only problem is the remote location of this hotel and there aren’t any shops around. I guess it would take another few years before the surrounding empty land are being developed. For those who drive to Melaka, this is a good place to stay. For those who don’t drive, it would be better to stay in hotels near Mahkota mall or Jonker Street.