Shangri-la’s Rasa Sayang Resort and Spa, Penang

I’ve never been much of a winner when it comes to contests and lucky draws. But a few months ago, I submitted a few photos for Shangri-La’s My Eat, Play, Shop instagram contest just for fun and imagine my surprise when I found out my photo of special edition Coca Cola can won us a 2-night-stay at Rasa Sayang Resort in Penang.

My Winning Photo (theme was Malaysia)

Frank was super excited because he had stayed in the resort before, while I was just looking forward to a non-work-related weekend away in Penang.. We booked our getaway for January and took the bus up. Batu Ferringhi is another half hour car ride from the Sungai Nibong Bus Station. The weather wasn’t the best when we got there (heavy downpour), but luckily we were blessed with pretty good weather the following days. The standard of service is high, which is not surprising considering it’s Shangri-La. We felt very welcomed throughout our stay at the hotel.

Gorgeous view.

Rasa Sayang is probably the most expensive hotel in Penang and it’s as luxurious as it gets. Located at the Batu Ferringhi Beach, it is a total paradise for one who just wants to get away from the hustle and bustle of a big city like KL. The architecture is distinctively Minangkabau inspired with artfully arranged batik printing moulds, sculpture, traditional jewellery etc. We were allocated the Garden Wing, which is surrounded with lush gardens, century-old trees and equipped with a stunning pool and a beach side bar ala “Cocktail” (missing a cute Tom Cruise as bartender though).

View of the room.
View of the room.

The room we stayed in was pretty spacious with a King sized bed. Once again traditional art can be seen including wood sculpture hanging on the wall. The bathroom has both a bathtub and a separate shower cubicle which I like.

Shower cubicle.
Shower cubicle.

Other things include a work desk, sofas, mini bar with tea & coffee making facility, and a lovely balcony overlooking the garden and pool. Free WiFi also comes in handy.

Even includes Wine Glasses (that bottle of McGuigan was mine)
Even includes Wine Glasses (that bottle of white was mine)

We didn’t stay in the room for long because the bar was calling our name.

Looking back at our room on 5th floor.
Beach bar is such a good idea.
Cheers! When on vacation, it’s ok to drink before sunset – Kelly Siew

We had dinner at a pretty well-known hawker centre named Long Beach a stone throw away from the hotel (about 15 minutes walk) and then spent our evening walking around the night market. The night market stretches out really far and it’s usually quite crowded with plenty of things to see. We even stopped by a random bar for a couple of drinks. It was all very relaxed.

By the way, if you ever go to Long Beach, try this Deep Fried Hainan Spring Roll. So good!

The hotel stay included their very famous breakfast buffet. We are usually really bad at waking up for breakfast, but I was determined not to miss it this time. So we woke at 9am to find the cafe super crowded with hotel guests. I guess everyone had the same idea.

Impressive Buffet Line at Spice Market Cafe.
Impressive Buffet Line at Spice Market Cafe.

We were suitably impressed with that they had to offer. From traditional Malaysian breakfast, Japanese, Chinese, to typical Western breakfast spread with plenty of healthy or sinful options. It will please the most picky eater. There’s even a large pastry section with all sorts of Croissants, Doughnuts etc which I didn’t dare to walk past too many times for fear of temptations.

Yum! Eating the rainbow is the perfect way to start the day.
Yum! Eating the rainbow is the perfect way to start the day.
Couldn't stop at one plate, so here's a more Malaysian platter.
Couldn’t stop at one plate, so here’s a more Malaysian platter. Gave in and grabbed a wholemeal croissant.

Following a heavy breakfast, the best thing to do is to get out of the hotel and walk all day. We took the complimentary shuttle bus to Georgetown (Traders Hotel) and explored the city on foot. The most popular thing to do in Penang apart from eating is to explore the famous street art. My favourite is of course the giant cat.

Snapped this beautiful lotus flower at a random shop.

We went back to the hotel and decided to stay in Batu Ferringhi for dinner. I looked through Tripadvisor and decided to go to an Italian restaurant based on their ratings. The restaurants in this area are mostly catering to tourists and this restaurant reminded us of La Porchetta (popular Italian chain) in Melbourne. It was a pleasant dining experience.

Salmon Linguine at Mario Ristorante. Brings back memories of Melbourne days.

You should be proud of me because we made it to the breakfast buffet again the next day. Happy to report that they do change the dishes everyday to keep it interesting. No wonder it’s so popular.

Mmmm…. so good! The thai minced chicken salad (bottom right) is the bomb!

Unfortunately, time flew when we were having so much fun. It was time for us to leave this beautiful hotel. Our bus wasn’t until later in the afternoon so we chilled out at the Beach bar again before taking the shuttle bus to Georgetown. The perfect vacation for us is one without a lot of activities but superb hospitality. I wouldn’t mind another weekend at the Rasa Sayang Resort. Thank you Shangri-la for a fabulous staycation!

Missing the beach.
Til next time.

Rasa Sayang Resort & Spa
Address: Batu Ferringhi, 11100 Penang
Phone:04-888 8888


6 Comments Add yours

  1. suituapui says:

    Been around for a long time now, was there when I first December 1973. Looks as good as new, very well maintained.

  2. “Eating the rainbow is the perfect way to start the day.” that’s a nice phrase! i should make that my philosophy too 🙂 the resort looks cool … i like how the mattress for the bed looks so comfortably thick! 😀

    1. kellysiew says:

      The bed is comfortable indeed! I love old-world hotels like these.

  3. Now you’re getting me so so jealous and I’d love a staycation somewhere as well 🙂

    1. kellysiew says:

      Hehe go for it! I am also in desperate need of a break.

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