Round The World and other travels

A frequent flyer's collection of trip diaries

This is: Singapore & Malaysia 2014


Hotel 1: Hilton, Paris Charles de Gaulle
Tuesday 25 November to Wednesday 26 November (1 night)
Room 629 (King Executive Plus)
Situated adjacent to both Terminal 3 at Charles de Gaulle and the Roissypole RER station (for transport to central Paris), the Hilton is certainly a good choice for airport stopovers at CDG. The convenience tends to come at a price, but I was fortunate on this occasion to find a very reasonable cash+points deal through Hilton HHonors. The lobby area is impressive and, while this was very much just an overnight stop, I can verify that the Executive Lounge put out an attractive spread at breakfast time.
Hotel 2: Hilton, Singapore
Thursday 27 November to Friday 28 November (1 night)
Room 1805 (King Executive)
The Hilton Singapore is situated in the city-state's tourist heartland on busy Orchard Road, famous for its luxury hotels, shopping and entertainment. This was another short, one-night stop, so my experience of the property was necessarily limited. Rather oddly in the midst of the equatorial heat, my room had what I considered to be a vaguely Scandinavian appearance. As in Paris, I only visited the Executive Lounge for breakfast, but it certainly impressed me. Perhaps the most abiding memory is of the friendly, helpful and thoroughly professional staff.
Hotel 3: Marriott Tang Plaza, Singapore
Friday 28 November to Sunday 30 November (2 nights)
Room 2110 (Twin Deluxe with view)
With its distinctive octagonal tower, this hotel is one of the iconic landmarks of Orchard Road. Being located directly above the local MRT station, it could hardly be more convenient for visitors. A sense of quality permeated the building, from the lobby to our well-appointed room to the excellent Executive Lounge. The fifth-floor sundeck and pool are located above the hotel entrance, but designed in such a way that it is hard to believe that the location is one of the world's busiest shopping streets. Finally, the in-house and very upmarket Cantonese restaurant Wan Hao deserves a mention for proving to be a stunningly good venue for our second-night dinner.
Hotel 4: Hilton, Kuching
Sunday 30 November to Wednesday 03 December (3 nights)
Room 1102 (King Deluxe Plus)
In many ways, the Hilton dominates the waterfront on the 'city' side of the Sarawak River (see first photo). Its higher floors give excellent views over the waterfront area and beyond, including the striking Sarawak State Legislative Assembly building across the river. Although the Hilton struck me as principally a business hotel, I found it to be an ideal base for sightseeing, with many attractions easily within walking distance. It may not have been the most lavishly appointed property, especially coming directly after the Marriott Tang Plaza, but I had a thoroughly pleasant and comfortable stay. I was upgraded to a room that was nominally 'Deluxe Plus' but in my view was, by any normal standards, a spacious junior suite. I also received the usual access to the Executive Lounge, as a Hilton HHonors Diamond member.
Hotel 5: Marriott, Miri
Wednesday 03 December to Saturday 06 December (3 nights)
Room 401 (King Executive Suite)
This award-winning, five-star property is claimed to be one of the best resort hotels in Malaysia, and I can certainly believe it. Occupying a prime coastal site between Miri Airport and the city centre, the hotel features well appointed rooms, excellent catering, a spa, beautiful grounds and a large, free-form swimming pool. It was exactly what I had been hoping for at this stage of the trip and I must confess that, in a real departure from form, I never set foot outside the compound from arrival until leaving for the airport!
Hotel 6: Hilton, Kuala Lumpur
Saturday 06 December to Sunday 07 December (1 night)
Room 2826 (Twin Executive)
This very stylish  Hilton, directly linked to Kuala Lumpur's central station, joins the two Marriott properties above to form a trio of 'most memorable hotels of the trip'. Everything about it oozed elegance and imaginative design, while the staff were exceptionally polite, friendly and helpful. The standout attraction was the 33rd-floor Executive Lounge, one of those Asian lounges that simply raises the concept to another level. Very highly recommended!
Hotel 7: Crowne Plaza, Singapore Changi
Sunday 07 December to Monday 08 December (1 night)
Room 930 (King Deluxe)
This was my second time at the Crowne Plaza, which is directly linked to Changi Airport's Terminal 3. Suffice to say that it proved itself once again to be the no-brainer choice for an airport stopover in Singapore.
Hotel 8: DoubleTree, London Heathrow
Monday 08 December to Tuesday 09 December (1 night)
Room 527 (Double)
I was originally allocated a 9th-floor King room, but when I opened the door I found that it had not been serviced, which is why I ended up in a standard double. This was a disappointing experience on which to end the trip, although the well executed hot breakfast offering was a redeeming feature.