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Saturday, July 7, 2012

Pangkor Laut Resort

I was terribly tired and burnt out from work. So I decided to take a week off spend some time at home with Ayden as well as go for a short holiday/ babymoon with hubby.

Whats a more suitable place than the Pangkor Laut Resort. We had our first babymoon at YTL Tembok Bali. We had such a fantastic time and loved the place to bits. At that time I was 6 months pregnant.

So Pangkor Laut was a natural choice to have our second babymoon. I had never been to Pangkor Island even, as far as I can remember. So this was my first time ever at Pangkor.

I was battling with myself whether or not to bring Ayden. I was not sure if the resort was children friendly. Also, this is my last chance to have some me and hubby alone time before the twins arrived. So we made a decision and went without Ayden.

We left home nice and early and the drive from Petaling Jaya to Lumut took about 3.5 hours. YTL has their own welcome centre/ reception at Marina Island (you will be taking the ferry from here) where you deposit your bags and the porter will ensure that it is taken right up to your room on the island! You also get a welcome drink upon arrival and there is a nice air conditioned lobby where you can relax while you wait for your little ferry to take you to the island.

The nice cosy lobby. You don't check in here though. You check in at the lobby on the island. 

The view of the marina. Lovely!

The ferry that took us to the island. Ferry ride was only about 15-20 minutes.
The water was so green. Look beautiful on a sunny day!

Approaching the island!
A lovely YTL staff welcomed our ferry ad lead us to the hotel lobby. Kinda felt like Fantasy Island for a while there lol!
We were greeted with another welcome drink at the lobby and we were promptly checked in and escorted to our room. Our luggage arrived shortly after we did.

Our lovely comfy bed

The tub that has that "outdoor" feeling. 

Lovely beach slippers.
By the time we settled down in our room it was around 2pm and very hungry. We decided to have some lunch before going for a swim at the pool.

We had lunch at the Royal Bay Beach Club which is right next to the pool. It was a HOT HOT afternoon. The restaurant had hornbills and peacocks dropping by once in a while! It felt like a tropical paradise!

We were on the Malaysian Residence package where all our meals were include in the 3D 2N package. The price was RM999 per pax for the Garden Villa. Not bad at all! Infact the price had only gone up since December 2011. Before that was RM 799. Was even cheaper then! If you are there without the package, the food cost a bomb in this resort. Expect to spend around RM300 per meal per couple. 
So since we were on the package, I selected the above starters. A smoked salmon ceasars salad. Simple but oh so delicious!

Hubby chose the Japanese temaki. This one is just so so.

My pizza was not yummy at all and I don't recommend it.

Hubby's burger on the other hand was very good!

The peacock that dropped by
Dessert was sago gula Melaka.
If you are unsure how to order, make sure you tell your waiter that you are on the Malaysian Residence package and they will advise you how you should order from the menu. Typically you are allowed to order a starter, main course and dessert each. However it does change from different restaurants. So be sure to ask!
The rest of the day was spent just relaxing by the pool

Gorgeous isn't it!
And a guy came along and offered everyone iced lollies! Perfect for a hot hot day!

Another hornbill dropped by. Basically you see hornbills zipping by and flying all over the resort all the time.

The resort had lots of these pots decorated with flowers

The next morning after  breakfast we decided to explore the resort. This is the view from the Hill Villas. There is a lift that takes you up there phew! But do note that if you are bringing children, the Hill Villa may not be that suitable as you do need to take some stairs so it is not stroller friendly. Whats idea is to get a Garden Villa on the ground floor. Certain areas of the resorts such as the Spa Village and one of the restaurants does not allow children to enter. Other than that Pangkor Laut Resort is quite children friendly. 

The Spa Village! So beutiful! But you need to do a treatment here in order to use the facilities.

The treatment rooms

The reception of the Spa Vilalge

As our stay was short we decided not to go for any spa treatments and relaxed at the beach instead. 
 Emerald Beach. 
The beach was great! White sandy beach and the sea was deep green

As soon as you approach the beach chairs, a waiter promptly arrives with a bucket of bottled water in ice! Thats great service for you!
Nothing like lying in a hammock by the beach
The island resort is rather large. To get to the Emerald Beach, or anywhere around the island, a free shuttle service gets you around.
It was about noon when we arrived at Emerald Beach so we had lunch at the restaurant there. The restaurant is right next to the beach so the gorgeous view of the beach is never out if sight!
For starters I ordered the Gado Gado and Spring Roll

Hubby ordered the shrimp salad and the pomelo worked great with the shrimp! It was so refreshing with little bits of pomelo exploding in your mouth. It was dressed lightly with an asian type dressing. 

For main course I ordered the Moroccan Lamb wrap. The lamb was so tender!

Hubby had the old style chicken chop
The view at our lunch table!
And this is the view of Emerald Beach from a look out point not too far away.

Another shot along the beach
We loved the beach so much we spent the rest of the day there. This beach is totally children friendly. Will definitely bring our lil boy next time!
We only had 2 nights at Pangkor Laut so the next day was spent by the pool again although we only had an hour after breakfast before we had to check out. 

So peaceful and so so gorgeous.
YTL has never failed to impressed. With their unique resorts and impeccable service, it makes you want to keep coming back. So far we have tried almost all their resorts such as The Cameron Highlands Resort, Tembok Bali and Tanjung Jara. I hear that they are opening another one in Sabah soon. Looking forward to try that one out!

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Friday, July 6, 2012

Pangkor Laut Resort

I just returned from a 4 night 5 days family trip to Pangkor Laut Resort and this was my second trip to PLR. My first trip was about 7 years ago and I must say that I was pleasantly surprised at how well maintained the resort and its facilities were. We went on a package deal which is only available to Malaysians (and Singaporeans, I think) which cost RM799 for 3 days 2 nights with all meals and speedboat transfer from Lumut Jetty included but you only get a choice of either staying in the Garden Villa or the Hilla Villa. I personally think that this is a pretty good deal as published rates for this resort for a garden or hill villa are about USD400++ per night. And food prices there are exhorbitant of course!

With this package, you are only allowed to have your meals in a few places and not ALL restaurants. Breakfast is held at the Feast Village while you are allowed to have your lunch either at Chapman's Bar (on Emerald Bay) or the Royal Bay Beach Club by the poolside. Dinner can be had at either Uncle Lim's Chinese Restaurant or the Feast Village which serves a mixture of both western and local cuisine. When I first made a trip to PLR about 7 years ago, the package was also at RM799 but we were allowed to order an unlimited amount of food! Currently, you are allowed to choose 1 appetiser, 1 main course and 1 dessert. Hey, I suppose with inflation, seeing that they didn't raise the price of the package, they had to do SOMETHING to lower their costs right?

One of the reasons why I like PLR is because it's not too far from home. It only takes about 3 hours to drive to Lumut Jetty. Another reason is the beautiful and clean beach called Emerald Bay. The water remains clear and the beach is still almost sandy white.

After lazing around in the sun on Emerald Bay, we usually have lunch at Chapman's Bar on Emerald Bay. Here, they also serve a mixture of Western and Local Cuisine. I must say that the quality of the food is not bad. Food pictures from Chapman's Bar below..

PLR also offers a Spa Village for the spa enthusiasts. I must first pre-empt everyone that the spa is uber expensive! For a 105 minute massage, you would have to fork out RM450! You can get the whole list of spa treatment and prices here. All spa experiences would normally start with what they call a 'Bath Experience'. This starts with going through a cold pool of water, then getting up and moving to an area where you are asked to take in four different scents which are supposed to invoke four different feelings, i.e. calm, passion, uplifting and something else (sorry, my memory fails me!). After that, you are led into a Japanese bath house where you are supposed to scrub the front of your body yourself with a loofah. Subsequently, you are led to an outdoor hot pool where you immerse yourself while waiting for the back scrub performed by the massage therapists. After the back scrub, you are presented a complimentary sarong to take home and led to a waiting area where you relax with a cup of tea while waiting for your actual massage to start. It was a good experience but I just couldn't bear to go more than once as it was sooooo expensive and I can get lots more massages back home with the same price!

If you are into sports activities, PLR offers 3 outdoor tennis courts, squash courts and also a range of sea activities like kayaking (is there such a word?), banana boat ride (RM120 for 10 mins ride!), wakeboarding, water skiing, snorkelling and fishing. The kayaks can be rented for only RM20 per hour so it's the cheapest option by far. Fishing and snorkelling trips costs RM220 per person for a 3 hour trip with a maximum of 4 persons per boat. Every additional hour costs RM80 per boat. Let's just say, for fishing, you'll be hard pressed to actually find any fish taking your bait...So I say, save your money for something else!

The sea sport activities are not done on Emerald Bay but on the opposite side of the island. We rented a kayak for an hour and immediately after, felt that we had small needles pricking our hands and legs! When I looked closely, I could also see that my hands were shimmering from a kind of substance (we couldn't figure out what it was). Suffice to say, all 6 of us was very uncomfortable after that as the feeling did not go away even after a bath and a scrub down! It only started to feel better the next day. So we're thinking the water might not be as clean. Shudder to think what it could have been caused by...

All in all, we had a great trip which was both relaxing but also very tiring. Why tiring? Because my husband and I chose to stay in the Hill Villa. All I remembered was that the view from the villa was fantastic and it was nice and quiet up there. What I had FORGOTTEN, was that it was such a chore getting up to the villa in the first place! So many steps, then we have to take a lift up, then more walking and more steps! We had forgotten that we were 7 years younger when we first came! Hahaha. Suffice to say, if I do return to PLR again, I will be staying in the Garden Villas!
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