Thursday, 21 August 2014

Z for The Zenith Hotel

The Zenith Hotel is the tallest building in Kuantan, Malaysia and stands as a 5-star hotel in the town centre. I have a special bond with The Zenith Hotel. I started documenting its progress from the laying of foundations on wasteland to the magnificent structure it is today.

We were among the very first people inside the completed The Zenith Hotel and had a tour with the General Manager who discovered my following of the hotel's progress on my blog. We've stayed there a number of times and loved each visit.

I used to walk across the wasteland to a shopping mall. To have a marvellous 5-star hotel now standing there is a great feat for Kuantan.

That concludes the A-Z of hotels. Hope you enjoyed this series!

Y for YTL Hotels

YTL Hotels is a Malaysian company which owns and manages a series of hotels, resorts, boutiques and spa villages across Malaysia and internationally. Their properties include Pangkor Laut, The Majestic Hotel KL, Spa Village Resort Tembok, Bali, Tanjong Jara Resort, Niseko Village, along with the more local Vistana Hotels in Kuantan, Kuala Lumpur and Penang.

Their website can be found here: YTL Hotels

They are also on facebook: YTL Hotels on facebook

This is me having a chat with the Pahang Menteri Besar (Chief Minister) at a rebranding event in February 2014 at Vistana Hotel Kuantan. Looking on, to the right, is YTL Hotels executive director, Datuk Mark Yeoh Seok Kah

X for Xenodocheionology

- the love of hotels

I am a pure xenodocheionologist. I love hotels, photographing them, frequenting them, everything about them. I love the atmosphere inside them, the staff who work therein, the service and friendliness that is found inside. I love the details of design and construction, the peace and quiet, being able to jump on beds without worrying what is happening to the mattress, photographing myself in mid-flight before landing on the bed. I love the holiday feeling I get when I'm in a hotel, the cool air floating around, the pleasant smells from the restaurant as it gears up for morning breakfast. I love bread and butter pudding which is served in almost every hotel in Malaysia. I love brief yet pleasant conversation with hotel staff. I love to dress up for the occasion, wearing smart trousers and a collared shirt while staying in a hotel, I love the luxury that is mine for 24 hours. I love watching the sun set from the room window, and rise the next morning. I love watching the night lights and city traffic pass by from the silence of my room. I love the privacy, exclusivity and refuge of the room. I love exploring every nook and cranny of our room, using every possible appliance and accessory that is provided for us. I love standing at the room balcony and staring out to sea. I love watching people at the pool, taking candid photos, processing ideas for characters in a novel I'm writing. I love the room service, leaving the tray on the floor outside when I'm done, and noticing its disappearance in the morning. I love the excitement of pulling in to the hotel driveway, checking in, and walking through the room door for the first time. I love it when a friend calls and I can tell them we are at a hotel now. I love the change in usual schedule, of losing track of time, of not having to prepare breakfast, lunch or dinner. I love being spoilt and pampered during my stay. I love blogging about my stay at a hotel, sharing the news on facebook, and writing an honest and detailed tripadvisor report on it. I love giving credit and praise to hotels and staff where it is due, and giving recommendations on what to try and what to avoid. I love getting to know hotel management and making lasting friendships with them. I love buying a shirt from the attached hotel shop. I love taking the plastic laundry bags home with me to use as rubbish bags in the kitchen. I love the rain shower head, writing my name and the date on the glass panels in the cubicle with my finger in the condensation, lying to soak in a warm bath, the difficulty in getting the temperature just right by nudging the handle ever so slightly to the left and to the right. I love that there's a telephone beside the toilet seat, even though I've never used it before. I love the free replenishment of bottled water, the occasional fruit basket, the morning newspaper outside the door. I love keeping the room clean and tidy even though a housekeeper will dutifully clear all the mess. I love going for a stroll around the hotel premises at night, savouring the atmosphere from hushed conversations, sounds of a piano being played, soft music playing in the background, the gentle clattering of utensils as people eat dinner. I love the positive vibes I always feel when staying at a hotel; positivity that comes from the cleanliness of the rooms, the beauty and luxury of the building, and the cordiality of the staff. I am a pure xenodocheionologist.

W for Windows

I'm a guy who has a tendency to being claustrophobic. I need open spaces. Hotels give me that; that's one of the reasons I love them so much. One of the ways open space can be generated is through windows. Here are a few of my favourite windows at various hotels:

Check out this set of windows at The Majestic Hotel KL. We stayed in the room with the circular shaped window, on the left

Here's the brilliant window from the inside at The Majestic Hotel KL. It gives such a sense of light and space - perfect!

Looking out of The Majestic Hotel KL room window

And here's how The Majestic Hotel KL's windows look at night from the Hotel Majestic old wing

Enjoyed a view of the sea from our Exec. Suite window at Vistana Hotel Kuantan

Imagine my joy when we drew the curtains back at The Zenith Hotel Kuantan to be presented with this panorama of a window overlooking the town!

The Zenith Hotel Kuantan is full of windows, space and light, as can be seen in this photo taken at the lobby

Tuesday, 19 August 2014

V for Vistana Hotel

As I mentioned in the 'T for Treated like a King' post, our love for hotels and relationship with them was kickstarted by my spur-of-the-moment visit to Vistana Hotel Kuantan.

Vistana Hotel has treated us so well and welcomed us into their family. We have stayed there on numerous occasions, taught English courses to staff there, and used their function rooms to conduct English Workshops. We are regularly invited to events which take place at the hotel.

Here are some of the things I enjoy about this lovely hotel:

I love being at Vistana Hotel Kuantan at night. Here is a view of the exterior and entrance to the lobby

The Executive Suite at Vistana Hotel Kuantan. A great room. Rolled balls along the floor with the children, enjoyed chilling out in the living area, and appreciated the views from the windows. The suite also featured an attached bedroom with private bathroom and another small bathroom near the entrance

Had many a nice family meal around this dining table in the Executive Suite at Vistana Hotel Kuantan. Also held an English class in our room at this table before!

Leah lying on the comfortable beds at Vistana Hotel Kuantan

Gazing up at the moon at Vistana Hotel Kuantan on a clear night