Monday, June 13, 2016

ipoh: haven

The second half of our holiday was less about family, and more about enjoying its scenic beauty.

We book ourselves into a resort called The Haven.

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* The clubhouse next to the serviced apartments

It’s a completely different world from the Ipoh we have known always, away from hustle and bustle and stifling hot coffeeshops and traffic jams.

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* Lots of private residences being built around the hills

A good 20-minute drive away from town, it’s an area with towering limestone hills, rainforests and hot springs and is dominated by the Lost World of Tambun which we visited last time, the Banjaran Hot Springs Resort (no kids under 12 allowed, it’s a Banyan Tree-ish type luxury high-end resort) and The Haven.

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It’s clear who this area is for when upon approach, we see a MacDonalds and a Starbucks.

It’s the unreal, touristy part of Ipoh, but one which we (especially KK) enjoy tremendously because it’s comfortable and calming with good Wifi. It's also very, very quiet with the occasional bird call and monkey shriek. It's like Xiao Guilin in Singapore.

The Haven itself comprises a lake with limestone hills towering over it on one side (plenty of monkey colonies), and three blocks - a mixture of serviced apartments for long-stayers and a hotel for tourists - flanking the other side.

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Online, it’s clear from reviews that there are times when it’s swarming with guests who then complain about bad service. But when we go its almost empty. I count 20 lit-up units on our first night.

Therefore, it’s perfect. We are kings of the castle, and we have the run of the place. At check-in, they know who we are before we even identify ourselves. The lift is almost always empty. We are the only occupants of the entire floor. We have the entire seahorse-shaped pool and Jacuzzis to ourselves when we swim. 

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Same case for the badminton court and gymnasium. 

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* Gong Gong playing against KK

Breakfast is a quiet leisurely affair, there are so few guests. Everywhere we go, the service staff greet us because there’s no one else around.

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* One of the waiters was so free (and nice) he approached us several times to take a family photo during breakfast, and waited until we were all at the table

The three bedrooms in our apartment are perfect, almost too-large, with views of the hills and the lake, and everything feels brand-new. Even the light switches are gleaming white. I think the resort is only three years old.

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* It's THAT kind of toilet

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* Gong Gong enjoying himself at the balcony, where he does his morning exercise facing the hills, and Por Por's feet

Away from the reality of life in Ipoh which we got from staying with Thim, The Haven offered a completely different Ipoh experience, which we also enjoyed a lot.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

The rackets sure came in handy. Day's got new shoes! Jun

Sher said...

ya lor wish u had come. not new lah, from CNY. his feet are getting humongous.