I stayed only one night (alas) in Kuching, as R&R on the way back to UK from a work trip to the Pacific. It was my colleague who did the research and chose the Ranee Boutique Suites - and how glad I am that he did!
We arrived pretty shattered, having done three flights from Solomon Islands to Brisbane to Singapore to Kuching, and appreciated the warm and efficient welcome. I managed to lock myself out of my room almost immediately, and the staff couldn't have been nicer! Our rooms (201 and 202) were lovely - well appointed, comfortable, and with a really wow-factor bathroom. And I simply can't believe that there is a better view to be had in Kuching than I had from my room, with the lovely old Steamship Co. building opposite, and a diagonal view from my bed across the river to the Astana. There was a little noise from the street during the night, but it didn't bother me
Our time in Kuching was very limited (only just over 24 hrs), so we were delighted to find the Ranee Suites so ideally located (from our point of view), right near all the old colonial administrative buildings, India Street and Carpenter Street, and a stone's throw from the river. It's a fascinating city, and we loved it.
I thought that the breakfast was superb, and also loved the room it was in, with all its mirrors, tiffin boxes, and living wall. And the work that is currently being done (to make a meeting area?) looks interesting. We loved all the wood, and the very East African (Zanzibari) looking big ornate doors. And the quirky 'library' area, with its old typewriter ... Whoever is responsible for the design has some very nice ideas.
I'm delighted that we chose the Ranee Boutique Suites. We had toyed with the idea of booking at the Merdeka Palace (as we'd heard that it is THE old colonial hotel), but - although the foyer is amazing, and really well worth a visit, it looked (from the outside at least) as though the rest of it might be pretty tired and more than a little depressed - and anyway it's not nearly so well located. If, like us, you're not a Hilton/big hotel chain sort of person, I don't think you could do better than the Ranee. I would certainly stay there again if I'm ever lucky enough to have the opportunity to revisit Kuching, and I thought that it was exceptionally good value.
PS Don't even try to work out the geography of the hotel - it's a real maze; thank goodness for the excellent signposting of room numbers at each of the many turns ...!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The Ranee is an exclusive 24-room boutique hotel strategically located in the heart of Kuching's picturesque Old Town (14km from Kuching International Airport). Stylishly rebuilt from two traditional 19th century shophouses and ingeniously adapted to modern standards of plush comfort, The Ranee is unique in that every spacious room/suite is different - designed to express its own individuality, charm and character. Step into The Ranee and you will be enchanted by the magic of old and new - a fusion style inspired by Sarawak's rich colonial heritage and mysterious ethnic cultures. In catering to the discerning traveller, The Ranee boasts an all-day dining/bar serving local and international cuisine, a cafe offering freshly baked delicacies, an in-house tour desk, and even a business meeting room. The Ranee is capable of hosting intimate cocktail receptions for functions up to 60pax (product launches, team building, informal business gatherings, private dinner parties, etc). At The Ranee we'll take you on a journey that celebrates the charm and romance of a bygone era. ... more less
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