Greenish HOtel Langkawi

This is a 3 star hotel located in Kuah, adjacent to where most Malay Malaysians love to shop – Haji Ismail Group shopping mall & hotel. It is only about a 25mins drive from the airport and roughly 10 minutes from the jetty. Room rates are at a range of RM135 – RM185/night.

EE at the lobby with the grandparents
Basic toiletries, hairdryer, mini fridge, free coffee & tea, hot shower.. lurvly..
View from our room. The pool. Petronas ( you can do the 10 000 steps everyday there and shop at Mesra. LOL).

All rooms have a balcony with different views of course and has free high speed WIFI. What I loved most about the hotel was the very friendly staff that genuinely helps you with the bags and the superb pool with its mini cafe that opens at night.

The guests here are thankfully not from those big tour groups. It can be a nightmare to be in the same hotel with big groups as they tend to hoard the breakfast food. Some even muka tak malu go and tapau to eat in the bus. We did however spot few guests that sneaked the breakfast buffet food up to their rooms! Mentang2 ko warga asing boleh plak buat suka hati.

If there was anything to improve regarding the service and facilities here, it would be ;

  1. The breakfast selection. I acknowledge that one should not expect selections like the ones served at 4 or 5 star hotels. But if a 2 star Seri Malaysia hotel can serve good food and fast service (clearing tables) – guests tend to have higher expectations. In Greenish Hotel, the best food was mi goreng ( serius sedap) and the omelette. I was disappointed with the coffee. Although I am not a coffee connoisseur, it still felt difficult to gulp down the beverage.
  2. Housekeeping need to be mindful in the small details. Pay attention to the depleting complementary beverages, the full rubbish can etc.
  3. Ventilation in the lobby. Perhaps it was an effort to conserve energy and electricity but when you have a lot of people waiting to check in and out – the heat does get to you.
  4. Parking space is free but limited. If you don’t mind walking, you could park at the gas station beside the hotel or even at HIG shopping mall and walk a bit. Perhaps the hotel will decide on expanding depending on the demand. LOl.

Despite the shortcomings, it was a pleasant stay on a budget. Definitely my go -to- hotel in the future.

Melaka – Langkawi – Penang – Melaka

Finally, my husband could take leave after slaving himself for 4 months working non-stop. He is at the near top of his career ladder. This translates to still having to work on the weekends. He chose Langkawi & Penang for our mini year-end vacation and we invited his parents to come too.

This time we tried using Malindo Air and depart via the Batu Berendam airport in Melaka. It’s a small airport which has 1 mini cafe and 2 other tuck shops. The toilet and musolla was enough for the number of visitors and most importantly, clean. Parking was FREE. For now.

The flight took about 1H 40mins from Melaka to Langkawi. Our plane was a little, cute plane that gives off this Jurassic Park vibe to it. We did not order any inflight meals cause the journey is very short. We checked into the Greenish Hotel (will write about that later) and went about our days. For this trip, we decided to take it really easy. Since we have been coming to Langkawi for almost every year, this time we ditched the cable car and The Aquaria.

We still went to Langkawi Wildlife Park because its fun to feed the animals. They have a new attraction which is an augmented reality studio. Honestly not impressed. Please do not waste your time and money there.

HIG complex is a must. This is where apart from selling chocolates, they sell local health & cosmetic products, kitchenware, glassware, duvet etc. All this at a tax-free price. A construction is ongoing at site. Not sure what they’re building.This time since I am in a weight loss programme, I have been more cautious in my selection of chocolates. I spent more on dark choc varieties. However, my favourites like Hersheys, Bounty & Maltesers made it into the basket too. I am not a fan of Daim.

Meals were simple. We had nasi campur at various places including the famous Kak Yan. Then there’s Laksa Kaw which was a disappointment. The recipe is just off. It made me wonder whether that nice Rossabina laksa we had is the same owner of this Laksa Kaw (rebranded?) because the location is the same.

We spent 3 days and 2 nights in Langkawi and departed to Penang via the passenger ferry. Mr Husband booked the tickets online and had them printed out early. The tickets were scanned at the autogate and we get to wait at a very big, comfortable, air conditioned hall. Impressive!

Adult RM70.00

Child RM51.30

We were allocated numbers for our seats. So, no rush. Toilets are OK. They even provide complimentary puke bags for passengers. The 3 hour ferry ride went by smoothly cause they had movies on. Plus, air condition was working great. Bring a jumper if you are sensitive to cold. I was worried initially upon boarding because we were bombarded with a string of dangdut videos on the public TV screen as entertainment. I had thought it would last for the 3 hours of our journey. Thankfully they switched to an English movie as we set off. ha ha ha.

We hailed a Grab from the ferry terminal to our hotel Seri Malaysia (another blog post) and just stayed within the compound till our flight back to Melaka the following day. In short, we did not go sight seeing considering that it was New years Eve and people might get drunk on the streets. One thing I have to mention, even though this hotel is rated only 2 stars – the breakfast buffet is worth 3 stars. Even better than Greenish Hotel in Langkawi.

We finally reached home with a bang! Turns out that our flight coincides with the Melaka Welcomes The World campaign. So, we had kompang and all of the tourism entourage making a fuss over us handing goodie bags and what not at the airport. My kids of course enjoyed the attention.

Malindo Air delivered its best this time around – flight was punctual. I loved that we could travel easily from Melaka to Langkawi without having to drive up to Kuala Lumpur, spend money on overnight parking and catch a plane from there.

Now we can just land in Melaka, get back into our car and just drive another 15 mins back home. We had time to at least rest a bit before we got back to work and school the very next day. Let’s hope there will be more flights from Melaka to other places in the world. Our family would love it!

Langkawi 2018 : Langkawi Wildlife Park

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This place is a hidden gem. I had no idea it existed before and was in fact, voted as tripadvisors Travellers Choice in 2014 & 2015.

Tickets:

Adult RM 24.00 /Children RM 16.00

It may not be as huge as Zoo Melaka but at least they have a full covered walkaway, which helps shelter visitors from the rain and sun.

We arrived at the place just near 0930 AM. Good timing as the morning feeding sessions were like 10AM, 11AM and such. Plus, not many people have flocked to the area so we could walk slow and steadily without the distractions of other visitors. And we could feed the animals first.

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Ee enjoyed feeding the animals and learning about what these creatures eat as well. We bought one food pack which has a variety of stuff in it. Ee was ecstatic to discover that birds can eat more than just bird seeds. And emus can actually eat peanuts. The friendly rangers even demonstrated to us on how to feed the animals and gave us a fun fact or two about them.

During our visit, a mini Fear Factor Challenge was ongoing and I participated. I had to find shillings in a snakes case, also coins in a mountain of worms and finally trying to identify a particular animal in a box. My reward was a 50% discount on my next visit to the park within one year. Yeay!!

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We were out of the park after about 90 minutes and this is after seeing two feeding shows – the deer and crocodile of which visitors are encouraged to participate. Not too bad I have to say. Will be one of our favourite places to go every time we come to Langkawi.

Langkawi 2018 : Grand Continental Langkawi Hotel

I was taken by surprise the number of foreign tourist at this hotel. China tourist. How is it that I have not come across them before? Then I realized that its got to do with the type of hotel I chose this time round, Grand Continental Langkawi HOtel. And what an interesting lot they are. HA HA.

GCL Hotel is a 3 star hotel located in Kuah near a small shopping mall which you could go to by foot in 53 seconds. A reflexology and massage service is also located beside the hotel at the same building.

I booked a Standard Triple Room which has 1 Double Bed and 1 Single Bed which costs me RM875.32 including tax for a 5D4N stay. It has a mini fridge which I liked. With its complimentary coffee and such. The toilet has both a shower and a bath tub. But I did not feel like soaking in it because the tub was old and it felt icky. My son however loved the tub and he managed to come up with a mini movie in it while playing with his figurines.

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The facilities are OK. 1 restaurant. 1 swimming pool. No gym. The staff were super friendly and helpful. The only thing that puts me off was the presence of a particular group of tourist. 2 buses of them at one time, at least. With a change of group probably every 3-4 days. They are not mean. Or evil. But they are robust and rowdy. Which can appear selfish?

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However, since they are bringing business to the hotel and also Langkawi – it is something perhaps we local tourist have to accommodate or make adjustments. Or complain. 

They can be very loud in the hallway early in the morning or late at night. To some of them, it is of a normal decibel. It is their way of communication. We learnt to shut our ears. HA ha.

Our little family also  learnt that it would not be a good idea to go for the breakfast buffet too early in the morning. We initially went down at 700AM and the crowd was just overwhelming. Thankfully there are still sensible queues at the Roti Canai and Egg Station. The slices of bread however were gone in minutes as the guests loved to pile lots of them in one plate at one go. Maybe they really like the jam.

Pushing and shoving can be normal to them so since I’m quite small sized, I avoid the crowd. After all, we were in no rush to do any activities early in the morning nor did we sign up for any tour excursions – so we could wait for them to finish before we help ourselves to the buffet. We started going for breakfast near 900 AM.

I really want to applaud the staff for they were very patient with the mess, the frequent orders by theses tourists to top up the food etc. They had smiles plastered to their face and kind words (always) when in contact with both local and foreign guests.

Despite its wonderful location and great price for facility, I might reconsider staying at his hotel in the future. For the above reason. My sister told me the situation would probably be the same for other 3 star hotels. This would mean having to choose a homestay, a boutique hotel or small resort like Tok Senik or a 4 – 5 star hotel next visit.

I look forward to suggestions.

Langkawi 2018 : Our simple itinerary in pictures

For the family who gets to go here every year.

For the family with young children.

For the family who have all the time in the world. Well, more like it was the school holidays and this was the time we get to take many many days off.

This is our itinerary for 2 adults. 1 kid. 1 baby. 5D4N in Langkawi. 

20.06.2018

Departed from Melaka by car. Had breakfast at mamak and later brunch at Dunkin Doughnuts. Had minutes to spare at Mitsui Premium Outlet.

Parked at Salak Tinggi Park & Ride. RM 5/night for overnight parking. We had to park under the sun though as the roofed ones are for apparently those with Season Cards. Lemme know if ‘m wrong. We then took the KLIA Transit train to KLIA2.

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Rented an Axia for RM50/day through the booths at the Langkawi airport itself. Mr Husband chose to book from the most enthusiastic saleslady who was already on her knees at her desk shouting, “abang.. abang.. sinilah..kereta murah”

Checked into Grand Continental Hotel

Dinner MarryBrown

21.06.2018

Spent half a day at LAngkawi Geopark/ Cable car thingy.

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Lunch was Laksa Ikan Sekoq and rojak at the airport area.

Dinner was at HIG Food Court

22.06.2018

Spent half a day at an indoor park. Langkawi Wildlife Park.

Lunch was Laksa Kaw (Rossabina) in front of the Padang Matsirat school.

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Later part of the afternoon, Mr Husband and EE went to the mall beside our hotel. It was a 52 seconds walk from the main entrance of our hotel to the mall.

Evening – went to Dataran Lang but the sun was still strikingly blazing even though it was already 6PM.

Dinner was chicken.

23.06.2018

Rainy day. Did not get to stroll Pantai Cenang. So we went to again, The Underwater World.

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Lunch was LAksa Kaw again because it is that yummy.

24.06.2018

Checked out. Morning flight to KLIA2.