A weekend getaway to the island of Penang would be one of the many things that most Malaysians would do on a whim. When amazing hawker food is involved, you don’t need to ask your group of friends twice if they’re coming along, it’s a guaranteed yes.
After the 4 hour drive from Kuala Lumpur to Penang, we made our way to Batu Ferringhi and found ourselves at the beachside resort we would call home for the next 3 days, the DoubleTree Resort by Hilton Penang.
Prior to checking in, the Hilton Honors app notified me that I had a 1 category room upgrade from a ‘king guest room’to a ‘king guest room with balcony’ for being a gold member. Any upgrade is better than none, and I appreciate it. At the check in desk, they warmly greeted everyone and handed out cookies all around. A small paper slip detailing gold/diamond member benefits was given alongside our room key card, listing all the usual benefits such as complimentary breakfast and space available upgrades, but the one I perk that stood out would be the complimentary daily tea time that runs at the Food Store during the late afternoon in the lobby from 3pm to 4pm.
I was assigned room 1108 which was located on the highest floor of the building that had partial sunset sea views which was pretty nice. The room was spacious and had the usual plush beddings as you would expect, and all the regular toiletries stocked from Crabtree & Evelyn. There was also a note and local sweets on the desk that welcomed and thanked us for our patronage. A nice touch by staff. No one says no to free snacks.
Out on the balcony were also 2 deckchairs with a little table in between them. It’s also pretty easy to look into your neighbours’ balcony if you just crane your head out a little, I realised this when I tried to get a shot of the beach when the next door neighbour said hello, hah.
The wall panel next to the TV also had plenty of power sockets and USB ports if you need to set up your work station on the desk.
Right before sundown we managed to catch the views of the sunset from the balcony, and it was pretty nice. I would imagine it to be even better from one of the sea facing rooms/suites.
The hotel is located on a beachside coast smack in a suburban area surrounded by apartments and terrace houses, so noise and traffic isn’t a bother. It’s located far enough from the crowds of the city, but yet easily reachable with a car in under 15 minutes.
The property is not located directly next to the beach, rather it is situated across the street from the beach. There is a direct overhead bridge from the hotel poolside that connects you to the public beach which is only accessible via your room keycard. That’s why there aren’t any beach facilities like lounge chairs, a beach bar or towel service provided for when you hit the beach. There are some local eateries/hawkers by the beachside should you need to grab a meal or some drinks.
The next day at the breakfast hall, the crowds were insane. I suppose all the weekenders from out of town are in full swing. Breakfast was held at the Makan Kitchen, the main dining area of the resort. The choice of food was pretty extensive for breakfast, there were stations set up all around for all types of cuisine ranging from Chinese, to Malay, to Indian and western. Showcasing the best that Malaysian cuisine has to offer. I’ll give it a 5/5.
After a hearty and filling breakfast, we took a walk around the resort to check out the grounds, given that it was a Sunday afternoon, the pool was filled to the brim with adults and children alike. The surroundings of the pool were filled with sand to mimic the feeling of being by the beachside, not my favourite kind of pool but that’s the look they’re going for. Right next to the overhead bridge that connects to the beach was a little kiddie pool corner which was empty.
All in all I had a pretty great stay here to be honest, the rates were very reasonable, service was impeccable, and the location was a big win for me. It’s just nicely situated away from the crowds of the city, but yet easily reachable by car if you plan on getting into town. The great review also came easily because during check out, the front desk agent snuck me 2 extra cookies for the journey back home to KL. I’ll gladly come back anytime.