Shangri-La Hotel Kuala Lumpur

28 March 2013

I must say that I had high hopes for this hotel, and while the overall service was great I was not too fond of the decor. Red is, unfortunately, not my favorite color.

But I'm getting ahead of myself. Let's start with check-in which was a breeze, though I wonder if they do an x-ray scan on our luggage prior to delivering them to our room. Unpacking would have been much faster had we brought our bags up with us instead of handing them over to the bellhop.

As per my last post, we decided to transfer here from One World Hotel in Petaling Jaya to be closer to the city. While moving was definitely a good idea, we could not help but make a comparison. This room seemed smaller and the bathroom was definitely more cramped. Also they had less cable TV channels than at the other hotel.

The bathroom though was cleaner. Please note that the bathroom at One World was also clean, but there were fewer mold spots at Shangri-La.

Breakfast was also better than at One World - maybe it was the chocolate fountain, but somehow despite the smaller size of the dining area, it seemed that the layout and the options were much nicer. Still no bacon though.

As to getting around, rail stations are walkable but they are quite far from the hotel. It's a good thing that there's a shuttle service to some of the malls in Bukit Bintang and to the Petronas Towers (which is approximately a 10 minute walk from the hotel).

On the second day of our visit, we went back to our room after lunch and found that the bed was a bit haphazardly done. We're not that picky, but both Earl and I have stayed in enough hotel rooms to know when something was done in a hurry. I guess I was just expecting more out of Shangri-La.

I was impressed with the check-out service though. When the front desk agent found out we were leaving for the airport already, he immediately called to reserve a cab without being asked. As mentioned earlier, we've been to quite a few hotels but that was the first time anyone did that for us.

Petaling Jaya: One World Hotel

20 March 2013

Earl had a business trip to Petaling Jaya last week and I decided to tag along. The office booked him at One World Hotel which is linked to the 1 Utama Shopping Centre (currently listed as the fourth largest mall in the world).

At first I thought that I could take the train and then board the hotel shuttle from the KL Sentral Station, but my flight was arriving at a non-peak hour so there was no shuttle service. Thus, I would first need to get the KLIA Ekspres to KL Sentral, transfer trains and take the MYRapid to Kelana Jaya station and finally board a taxi to go to the hotel (around 15 minutes).

I've discovered that Malaysia is a lot like the Philippines - you never know if the taxi driver will use his meter. That said, the best and safest* way to get to the hotel from the Kuala Lumpur International Airport is to book a cab from the airport counter. The trip will cost MYR 73.50 for the budget version and will take around 40 minutes (this counter is located right after the baggage and customs area and before the exit).

*According to the local newspaper, there's been a number of robberies and one case of rape courtesy of unscrupulous taxi drivers. One driver advised that it would be best to book a taxi over the phone that way the head office will know the name and plate number of the person who picked you up in case something unfortunate happens. Also, you would not need to negotiate the fare since it's either a set price or metered.

The room itself was nice and spacious. The bathroom was relatively clean with just a few mold spots towards the bottom of the shower stall. The bed was more on the firm side - it wasn't hard but it was not as soft as some hotel beds we've tried. The pillows were nice though.

Interestingly enough, they had more cable TV channels than at the Shangri-La Hotel in Kuala Lumpur which is the subject of my next post.

Buffet breakfast was okay, though I was disappointed to find out they had no bacon. Not surprising since we were in a Muslim country, but it didn't stop me from missing it. Somehow, breakfast didn't seem complete - they had the beef version but it's not the same. Take note that the food stations are not close together so one will need to go all around the dining area to find more options.

In closing, I would definitely recommend this hotel for anyone who needs to stay in the area. They also have a shuttle service to the Petronas Towers but we opted to transfer to another hotel to cut down on the commute and save time.