Don’t you just wish you could escape the scorching heat in the city this weekend to a hillside retreat where the temperature is much milder and the air a little fresher? Genting Highlands is, in our humble opinion, your best bet for a respite from the city’s hustle and bustle. And guess what, this popular staycation haven has a brand new sparkling hotel to just melt all those stress away.
Enter the Swiss-Garden Hotel and Residences, strategically located in Genting Permai and just a 30-minute drive from Kuala Lumpur. As it is only a stone’s throw away from the Genting Highlands peak, you will have plenty of activities to choose from. Drive up to the peak to enjoy the indoor theme park Skytropolis, or shop at Genting Premium Outlet and dine at SkyAvenue, and come back to enjoy the amenities at the hotel away from the crowd.
Space, space, space
Swiss-Garden Hotel and Residences just opened doors in July 2019, and so, the hotel is spick-and-span. We were quite excited to be among the first batch of guests to stay here.
Our jaw dropped at the size of our Deluxe King room. At 34 square meters, it is spacious enough to fit another bed in the room, we think! The room has a color scheme that is soothing to the eye, and oozes practical minimalism — the king-sized bed takes center stage, complemented with a working desk and a flat-screen TV. After spending a day out exploring Genting, we’d bet you want to just lie on the bed and do nothing else!
There are also coffee and tea making facilities, a wardrobe and a safety deposit box. While the room amenities are pretty standard, we loved the cozy sitting area that looks out to picturesque views of the mountain. We felt so rested just gazing out the window!
Swim beneath the stars
The 41st floor is where all the fun things are. We loved the A-frame alcove, which is decorated in wood furniture and earth tone colors. The look and feel of the space complement well with its natural surroundings. It’s the perfect spot to have a cup of coffee or read a book.
But the best part of the hotel is the heated rooftop swimming pool. No more dipping your toes daintily to check the water temperature, you could just jump into the pool! It’s really refreshing to be soaking in warm water and at the same time, breathing in fresh and cool mountain air.
While it might be quite hard to find a decent place to eat around Genting Permai area, the hotel has an amazing selection of local and Western delicacies to fill up your tummy. We’d highly recommend the lamb curry which is best eaten with warm bread and stir fry eggplant with salted egg. Wash them down with a tall glass of refreshing vegetable and fruit juice. Your perfect day is complete!
For a refreshing staycation up on the mountains, check out the Swiss-Garden Hotel and Residences!
Our verdict: Since the hotel operations are still new, do expect some hiccups in services along the way. However, as Swiss-Garden is a well-known brand in the service and hospitality industry, you’ll still enjoy your stay thoroughly, with attentive care by the friendly hotel staff.
See and Do
The strategically-located Swiss-Garden Hotel and Residences is near several tourist spots. Here are our favorite things to do during our stay:
SeniKome Péng Hēng
Seni Kome, which directly translates to “Our Art” in the Pahang local dialect, is dedicated to promoting craft, fashion, games, food and music from the east coast of Peninsular Malaysia. You may also learn about its history through artifacts and paintings. Make sure to check out the exhibition on the indigenous community!
This arts and cultural centre also has an experiential area for various traditional games that you could try your hands on. Don’t remember the rules of congkak? No worries, the helpful staff will guide you!
SeniKome Péng Hēng
Level 4, First World Plaza
Guided experience tours are held three times daily
Opening hours: 10.00am – 10.00pm (daily)
Happy Bee Farm
Only a four-minute drive from Swiss-Garden Hotel and Residences, Happy Bee Farm Genting offers visitors a glimpse on bee farming in Genting Highlands. You can find a butterfly farm, café, and retail outlet selling reasonably priced products such as bee pollen, royal jelly, propolis, and natural honey.
You also have the chance to check out a colony of bees in action via a see-through encased panel. If you’re lucky, you’ll catch the beekeeper collecting raw honey from beehives whilst being surrounded by thousands of flying stingers. At the end of your visit, you could bring home a pot of this gold liquid!
Happy Bee Farm & Insect World
8, Jalan Meranti, Genting Highlands
Opening hours: 9.00am – 9.00pm (daily)
FUHU Restaurant & Bar
While you’re here, check out the latest offering by the Zouk Group. Helmed by a three Michelin starred chef Alvin Leung, the newly opened FUHU Restaurant & Bar promises a modern spin to classic Asian fare. Some of the must-tries include Fuhu roasted duck, Boston lobster noodles, Szechuan-style hot & sour lobster soup and fried chicken and waffles. Feast your eyes on its amazing interior design, complete with curated art installations, lighting and music playlist to tingle with your senses. You know you’ll be having a good time here!
FUHU Restaurant & Bar
Level G, SkyAvenue
Opening hours: 6.00pm till late (Monday to Sunday)
With such a wide range of accommodation options across the country, it can be a challenge to pick the one that’s best for you. To be in the know when it comes to Malaysia’s stand-out stays, keep your eyes peeled for Traveloka’s ‘Super Stays’ posts, a bi-weekly hotel special featuring our top picks!