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Shangri-La's Tanjung Aru Resort & Spa
Ranked #4 of 91 Hotels in Kota Kinabalu
Certificate of Excellence
England
Level Contributor
43 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
“Excellent place”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 23 April 2014

Great place for children or if you want a quiet life. I didn't go with children and not keen on children spoiling my piece and quiet, however this hotel catered for all. There is a pool for adults only which the life guards watch constantly. The children have a fantastic area to play and alive ly pool for them too. Food was excellent. Even had room service which was reasonably priced. The beach was limited space but not a problem if you like a pool. A large hotel with lovely staff and good restaurants. The beautiful sunset bar is a must and the BBQ food was excellent. A good alround hotel. Airport on 10 mins away. Sandakan is only an hour by plane and well worth the visit to Sepilok to see the organgutans.

Room Tip: Sea view is well worth it to see the sunset and just admire the view.
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  • Stayed March 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank WhizzerEngland
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (776)
Date | Rating
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English first
Penang Island, Malaysia
Level Contributor
29 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 23 April 2014

I loved this hotel and at the same time didn't likes it!!
confusing? Let me make easy :)

Pros- best sunset, FEW pools(for kids & adult!), Water rides, Room with great view(we didnt had but collegues had so i knew!), walking distance to first beach where u can try amazing juices like avocado & all(& second beach if u love to walk! Dont try at night. quiet & not safe as local told me.), activities for adult-http://www.shangri-la.com/kotakinabalu/tanjungaruresort/daily-activities/, activities for kids like butterfly catching and lot more, good sports facility(Loved jacuzzi there!)

Cons- Slooooow service(before going there i asked about kids activity, specifically mentioning my stay date, i recived reply after i came back!), Crowded, Huge area so have to walk a lot even if u just wanna go to pool or see sunset, in room dining bad(messed up my breakfast order for two times!), restaurant choices & quality, worst. walk to first beach & better eat there!


If i go KK with my kid, this would be my first choice. If alone, nope!

Room Tip: kinabalu suite are more quieter i read somewhere here only.. we stayed at kinabalu suite & it wa...
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  • Stayed April 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Nil0fer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
HK
Level Contributor
10 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 22 April 2014

Just came back from the Tanjung Aru hotel. 5 days of clear blue skies and calm seas. Ususally we stay at the Rasa-Ria further out of town, but that was sold out during the busy Easter period. So I was a bit hesitant about going to this hotel closer to town. Firstly, the decision whether or not to choose Rasa-Ria or Tanjung Aru rests with whether or not you have younger children or you want to enjoy a romantic holiday. If it is the latter, then go to Rasa Ria, which is recently renovated, has a beautiful beach and enjoys great seclusion about 45 minutes drive away from Kota Kinabalu. For kids, the Tanjung Aru with its 3 water slides, large pool and water playground will certainly be a hit. The Tanjung Aru is a shangri-la and even though it is showing its age, our room and the hotel overall was spotless and well maintained. The staff were genuinely warm and friendly, in my opinion more so than the rasa-ria and were much more kid-oriented. In my opinion, what makes or breaks a hotel experience is more the behaviour of other guests rather than the staff, and I found many guests snapping and yelling at the staff if they didn't get what they wanted right this instant. But if you go there for a holiday, and don't mind waiting for your food a few minutes longer than you expected, then you will definitely enjoy this hotel. The food quality is good. Breakfast and dinner buffets are well sorted with lots of choices, of course during the peak season, it is more like a mad scramble to get to the feeding trough by the masses, but this is to be expected.
The only negatives I would mention is that during hot days, the pool water heats up rather quickly, and more shade would be welcomed and also there isn't much "local" food to be had at the hotel's restaurants, but a quick taxi ride outside of the hotel soon solves that problem. And that there were not enough staff around in the restaurants.

The positives:
- Clean and Tidy rooms
- Quick Check-In service
- Lovely views especially from CocoJoe's restaurant
- Great pool with kids slides and water playground
- Lovely staff
- Even though hotel was full, there was plenty for everyone to do (island hopping, snorkling, fishing, etc) so the crowds dispersed rather quickly.

We stayed in an Executive Suite in the Tanjung Wing on the Second Floor facing the 9 hole pitch and put course. Even though the airport was close by, we were not disturbed by any noise and were woken up by the peaceful chirping of birds every morning.

Would I prefer this hotel over the Rasa Ria? Yes and no. My 6 year old son would prefer it, as there was much more to do, has a pool side ice-cream bar and it is closer to town. But if your main point is having a beach and being far away from everything, then you are better off going to the Rasa-Ria.

We had a great and relaxing holiday with fishing, and lounging around in the pool. This hotel is not cheap, but we were not disappointed.

Room Tip: The tanjung-wing seems to be closer to the quiet side of the hotel, away from the marina.
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  • Stayed April 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank rwhk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
St. Albans, England
Level Contributor
36 reviews
25 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 84 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 22 April 2014

Kota Kinabalu has two Shangri La resorts. Both are beautiful. We stayed at the Tanjung Aru and visited the Rasa Ria. I can't speak for the Rasa Ria but I can tell you that I have rarely stayed in a hotel/resort that has so brilliantly managed to cater for both families and those travelling on their own or together.

Situated on a beautiful beach where the sunsets are amazing, the Tanjung Aru resort is a haven away from the city of Kota Kinabalu whilst not being so far away that you cannot access those amenities and attractions set in the town.

Its a resort of two halves. The first wing built some years ago and a more modern version. We stayed in the old wing but, to be honest, it was some days before we learned we were not in the more modern bit. Some reviews suggest a preference. I wouldn't get worried about it.

Rooms are spacious, well furnished and attractively set. If you can afford a bigger, sea view, room then go for it but don't worry if you are limited to the mountain views (actually car park and games court view would be a little more accurate but, again, don't let this put you off.

It is well worth going for the club deal. This will cost you about 200 MYR a night which is around £40 sterling. This gives you free breakfast and a cocktail hour (actually two hours) where a huge range of snacks are provided. Plenty to provide for a good evening repast. Given that breakfast costs 80 MYR a person then you are getting two hours of alcoholic drinks and some amazing snacks for virtually nothing. Children are similarly provided for in their own two hour slot from 4.30 to 6.30.

The pools are amazing, the water play awesome.

Staff are courteous and engaging. All deserve special mention but James on the concierge desk was especially helpful.

Everywhere you want to go in KK costs 30 MYR by taxi. One point to take care of is to ensure that having paid the hotel the 30 MYR you don't then get conned into paying the taxi driver as well. If this happens to you tell the Hotel and they will deal with it harshly.

The hotel has a sister arrangement with the Rasa Ria resort. It does cost a few ringets to get the shuttle bus but its well worth it. Go see the Orangutans. It will make your trip. The rest of the Rasa Ria is pretty spectacular too.

Back to TA. I would avoid rooms facing the pool area. It can get a little noisy. My son and his family treated themselves to a suite (actually stayed in by Prince William - I have a picture of the toilet if you are interested) but although you could host a celebration for a small country inside it, (the suite not the toilet) I found it noisy at night and did not offer the tranquility of the remainder of the resort or our own room which was on the other side.

Like all Shangri La Hotels, the service is wonderful, the attitude of the staff exceptional and the facilities first class. An amazing stay.

Room Tip: Even if you book on line ring up and discuss your room and any possible upgrades. They have a host...
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  • Stayed April 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Martin W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
West Sussex England
Level Contributor
101 reviews
85 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 122 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 22 April 2014

This is one of the really great South East Asian hotels, a large, luxury hotel where everything works superbly. The breakfasts are out of this world, offering every conceivable type of cuisine, a wide selection of proper fresh fruit juices, good cappuccino, eggs, sushi, pastries, you name it. There is a small private beach where you can have a dip in the sea if you like, or a pleasant pool with recliners, poolside service, and a separate area for the screaming spoilt children of your fellow guests. The massage facilities are top quality in a special peaceful annex. The sunset bar is splendid, offering nice snacks and rather inadequate, weak cocktails. The view is out of this world. There is a great throng of photographers at 6.00 pm for the sunset, but the bar is practically deserted by 6.15 when the sunset still has plenty of time to run. The Chinese restaurant in the hotel is extremely good, the Italian more variable. It is worth opting for an executive room in the business wing, where the complimentary lounge provides you with free drinks and snacks (and child-free after 6.30 pm). Staff are very helpful and service-oriented. The hotel is out of town, but is very convenient for the airport.

  • Stayed April 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank weltravelledofSussex
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
11 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 22 April 2014 via mobile

Stayed at the resort last week 11th of April - 19th. We found it just - ok. The resort needs updating in a big way. We found the service less than shangri la type service. In general the staff was not happy.

Our cleaning staff was terrible ... and on two occasions we had stained sheets that we had to ask to be changed.

Disappointed in the food at the restaurants. The Chinese restaurant was not bad and room service had two things we liked 1.) Tom yum soup 2.) fish and chips ...otherwise disappointing.

Great location - a quick cab ride and you are in town.


Service really sucked. Waited over 45 min a few different times for drinks at the pool side.

Over an hour for room service??? Come on guys!

So much potential. The views and the pools are fabulous.

Overall this resort needs a refresher on the rooms, furniture, management, and service to bring it up to the shangri la.

Not cuttin the shangri la mustard.

Stayed April 2014
Helpful?
1 Thank Janice C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Singapore, Singapore
Level Contributor
24 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 21 April 2014

i stayed recently for a conference so didn't get to take advantage of the facilities. However, i was impressed by the activities on offer, lovely pool and even an adults only pool area. I was less impressed with the food. However we did have conference style buffets so that may not be good to judge by. The room was lovely too and large.

Room Tip: I had a great view on the top floor, directly sea facing.
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  • Stayed April 2014, travelled on business
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank expatinsingapore
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Shangri-La's Tanjung Aru Resort & Spa

Property: Shangri-La's Tanjung Aru Resort & Spa
Address: 20 Jalan Aru, Tanjung Aru, Kota Kinabalu 88100, Malaysia
Region: Malaysia > Sabah > West Coast Division > Kota Kinabalu District > Kota Kinabalu
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Romantic Hotel in Kota Kinabalu
#1 On the Beach Hotel in Kota Kinabalu
#2 Business Hotel in Kota Kinabalu
#2 Spa Hotel in Kota Kinabalu
#2 Luxury Hotel in Kota Kinabalu
#3 Family Hotel in Kota Kinabalu
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:5 star — Shangri-La's Tanjung Aru Resort & Spa 5*
Number of rooms: 495
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 Hotel Kota Kinabalu
Shangri-La`s Tanjung Aru Resort And Spa
Shangri Las Tanjung Aru Resort
Shangri Las Tanjung Aru Hotel
Shangri La Kota Kinabalu

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