We are staying at the Shangri La Tanjung Aru and we are very much disappointed by the experience. We spent 8 nights the four of us (02 adults, 02 children: 02 years and 09 years). We had excellent previous experiences at other SLs both for family vacations and during business trips (Rasa Ria in Kota Kinabalu, Dubai, Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, Bangkok, Yangon, Jakarta, etc). The least we can say about the SL Tanjung Aru is that it is far below Shangri La standards, and also, below 5* standards:
- Room: The furniture is worn out with too much mould in the bathroom (see pictures). We had to remind the housekeeping to provide the bathrobes and small/medium towels daily. The throughput of the AC is not good enough. The hotel arranged a sofa bed for our eldest daughter, but the mattress was so worn out that we had to ask for an extra single bed instead (and still, the extra bed is merely better). The king size bed mattress is really too hard.
- Staff/Service: the staff is nice but overwhelmed especially at the swimming pool area & bar since the place is understaffed. The quality of the food of the buffet at Tatu and outdoor bar/grill is average. At the outdoor grill, the menu is really basic and limited, while waiting time is long.
- Leisure/Activities: the kids water playing area (water slides, etc) is really nice but the area is not well maintained. A lot of holes in the ground floor protection layer at the kids swimming/playing area (water slides, etc.) leaving the concrete layer apparent and posing risks of accidents are not taken care of.
Though a family oriented resort, nothing is organized evening times, such as show/performance outdoor diners.
- The beach: The seafront walkway is nice with a great sunset view. However, the beach is actually very small and the seawater is not clear (clean?), thus always empty (except for the sunset). For those looking for a nice beach and swimming spot, this is definitely not the place to go to, and the only option is to visit the (crowded) near-by islands (the boat transportation fees through the hotel are expensive though).
- Reception/Concierge: The welcome is very impersonal. While we arrived late at night and the reception was not crowded at all, we didn't even have the usual welcome drink.
The hotel policy with regards to taxi transportation to the city is also questionable. Either you take the hotel taxi service provider (paying a flat rate of about 10USD for a 10 minute ride to downtown!), or you hire a normal taxi by yourself (the hotel won't call one for you).
We're leaving the hotel with a big disappointment, unlike the experience we had at SL Rasa Ria last year. For about the same price, the latter is undoubtedly way much better in all respects.
- 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