We stayed here in Dec 2012 for 1 week,though we both wished it could have been longer.From the moment we arrived,we were treated like royalty! We were wisked away from the airport by the hotel curtesy air con minivan that was sent for "us!" a short pleasent ride to the steps of the hotel where we were greated by seven staff two playing the traditional Bornean gongs very impressively.
We were met by Elisabeth,who sorted out our check in,it was smooth and prompt no queing we were supplied with fresh cold lemon drinks and cold towels which I was very greatful for as I was dripping with sweat. On leaving the minivan my luggage disappeared and was taken too our room without any prompting and no charge or tipping no haggling it was just there in our room. My first impressions, I was made very welcome there was nothing the staff wouldn't do for you, they were all very happy and willing to speak and correct my early efforts at Bhasa Malayu.
The room was wonderful,gorgeous view of the sea,and it was cleaned every day,with fresh towels and bedding changed, all normal then.
The walk in shower fully on cold was to die for after a hot sweaty morning/night/day out etc , coming out of the shower with out drying and sitting on the balcony with beads of cold water on me is a feeling I love.
All the staff are so happy and courteous and they were all so pleased to greet y us as we initially walked around the grounds when we tried to speak Malay back to them we where listened too and then politely corrected until the words were reapeated correctly.
The breakfast buffet in the Tatu restaurant,is more than adequate,with every taste catered for.
I dined as early as possible 0615hrs to about 1000hrs with my wife joining a little later and always sat outsise on the terrace,so we didnt find it busy.Special mentions go to Suzzana,and Nur'ayien for their excellent service and supplying me with pots and pots of tea and suitable language advice and corrections, by the end of the week I was conversing in Malayu with the breakfast staff for about three hours and they all cheeryily waved and introduced themselves each morning when I arrived.Its the most fun Ive had at breakfast without food being throw!
We also ate here once in the evening and again it was a buffet menu,to sort all tastes, i was tiring of Malay (Nee) noodles for breakfast so in the evening I had mongolian and fruit as a change,also pasta. Yak is a fine meal!.
The Borneo bar is excellent too,special ambience in there,with views of the pool and the sea you can also feel the monsoon and the wind as it comes in through the open windows and with entertainment most nights it was easily the best place to be and with WiFi we were able to chat to people at home, special mentions to Elfrenna and Rashid,here who were most attentive, and were visably upset if you attempted to walk to the bar for a menu, they were kindly reassuring and would guide me back too my seat and another waitress would rush over and smile then take my order.Elfenna would then return to ensure the order was taken and we wanted for nothiing else, ship shape and Bristol fashion as the saying goes, except I've been to Bristol and it isn't anything like as sublime as Borneo!
The pool,espeicially the infinity pool is to die for.Stunning views of the islands......
We did a few day trips to the other Rasa ria,to see the orangs,well worth doing and shuttle bus is easily arranged at front desk it is very hot in the sun on these trips so a large brimmed hat is a must okay your gonna look like the archtypal jungle explorer, but its a must if your visiting from colder cilmates ie Europe! .
We also visited Sapi island by boat.This is a tropical island,where you can go snorkelling,and see many fish,the water is very salty and its easy to float, in fact I had a 15 minute snooze on my back bobbing around with the water lapping at my sking and the sun burning the beads of water away, sunglasses on,didn't have my hat on for that bit.Though the day we went,it was quite crowded.You can pay extra and have lunch on the island this is a basic canteen affair and you will be queing in the hot sun for 15 minutes before being at the head of the que.We opted for a couple of cold beers from the local shop sat on the porch and watch people que,people watching is great fun when your in the shade!
One day we hired a driver for 400 ringitt,and he took us to The observatory post,to the biggest mosque in Sabah,to some local markets,to Kinabalu park,Hot poring springs and a canopy walk.The canopy walk was a real experience although we only saw a flying squirrel the springs are a public baths that are tiled over if your expecting the stunning views of Iceland forget going.
It must be said,the weather was really hot,32 degrees plus some days,and it rains most evenings.We saw no jelly fish,sand flies during our stay and only a few mossies, no insects in our room and no snake in the bath so all was good!
Didn't use the spa, beach small clean tidy and netted off to stop jelly fish and trawled each day very good as bar next too it,bar meals very good.
We were both upset and sad to leave,the girls Kelly and Elisabeth both waved us off.We made many friends,we will definately return.It is heaven on earth.Thank you Tanjung Aru.
"One may pay back the loan of gold, but one dies forever in debt to those who are kind"
If you embace the culture and speak to everyone you meet just to say hello you will find a beautiful people and a stunning country that is far removed from the introspective world of the west/Europe/UK.
Would we go again OOOH YES!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- A paradise for the senses surrounded by natural beautyA gentle breeze caresses your face as you wake to the sound of waves lapping the beach. The balcony opens up to an inspiring vista of sparkling coral islands and swaying of palm trees. Tunku Abdul Rahman Park, bordered by crystal clear waters and lush vegetation Sophistication surrounds you in a lavishly decorated suite inspired by Borneo’s rich cultural heritage. Shangri-La’s Tanjung Aru Resort and Spa, Kota Kinabalu, is a perfect tropical getaway, a luxurious tranquil retreat just a short drive from the city.Yet, excitement beckons as you set out to discover all Kota Kinabalu’s delights. Making your way to Kinabalu National Park, you are thrust into a jungle paradise of natural wonders, rugged landscapes and scenic beauty. From the Rafflesia, the largest flower in the world, to the famous Orangutans in their natural habitat, it only gets more breathtaking every step of the way.The afternoon is spent exploring the picturesque town of Kota Belud. As Sabah’s largest and most popular open market, you find gems of all sorts, ranging from handmade handicrafts to mouth-watering local delights like natural honey.Back at the resort, you look forward to a sunset cruise, which departs from STAR Marina, to catch Borneo's famous sunset. Not long after, you wind down at Coco-Joe’s Bar & Grill. Lounging atop one of the beach-dining platforms, over cocktails and a delectable seafood tower, you continue to enjoy the sound of overlapping waves on the shores of Sunset Beach. A pampering session at CHI, The Spa rounds off the day. With treatments based on traditional Asian healing philosophies, you lose yourself in an enchanted and indulgent journey, all on the resort’s private spa island.For every experience here, you are surrounded by natural beauty. And it all begins at Shangri-La’s Tanjung Aru Resort and Spa, Kota Kinabalu ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Shangri-La`s Tanjung Aru Resort And Spa
- Shangri-La`s Tanjung Aru Hotel Kota Kinabalu
- Shangri Las Tanjung Aru Resort
- Shangri Las Tanjung Aru Hotel
- Shangri La Kota Kinabalu