This was the next stop in my Asian trip. I’d never been to Kuala Lumpur. We stayed at the Hilton DoubleTree Kuala Lumpur for 3 days, and I really liked it. I had talked to folks who told me there was nothing to do there. That’s simply not true. In my opinion, Kuala Lumpur is worth a short visit.
My previous reports are here:
I’ve been to Bangkok a lot of time and covered it last year. Since I didn’t break any new grounds, I decided not to write too much about it. Suffice it to say, I was quite busy at the TBEX conference during the day, so I didn’t have too much time to wander around. The conference was great, and I intend to compare it with the FinCon conference that I loved a lot, too. That might be of interest to other bloggers.
BKK Lounge Club Lounge
Every time I leave Bangkok, it cracks me up how modern and beautiful the BKK departure terminal is, compared to the outdated, dingy, and bland arrival area. It’s almost as if they told us: Finally! Thank you for leaving our country, stupid farang. Seriously, too funny.
I treat it my mission to report from airport lounges wherever I can get into one, and BKK wasn’t an exception. My Malaysia Airlines flight was in coach, but with the Lounge Club membership from the Chase Ritz Carlton card at my side, that couldn’t stop me. I got to the Louis’ Tavern CIP First Class Lounge in the Concourse 3 and immediately started enjoying myself. LOL.
But not before wandering into the Business Class Lounge and being denied entrance. No, they said, you belong to the First Class! Who am I to argue?
First class or not, the lounge is small, with regular chairs, and separate TV area (with the same chairs). I didn’t see any showers. There was no quiet area or anything like that, but it’s hard to blame them for it, because, again, the lounge was very small, if not outright claustrophobic. The food, however, was OK, even though there were only a couple of hot items on the menu.
No problems with booze and beer, either.
I don’t know if they have the same setup at other concourses, but I don’t remember these “day-beds” from before. Maybe I hadn’t paid attention, or maybe they’re new, but should I’ve known, I would’ve rather snoozed on one of those, as I hadn’t slept too much (or nearly enough) the night before.
Malaysia Airlines BKK-KUL
This was my first flight on Malaysian. It was short and sweet due to the modern cabin and seats, and individual entertainment systems with large montors. I thought, the choice of English-language movies and TV shows was quite good, and I managed to watch the bigger part of Selfless (like I said, it’s a short, 2-hr flight). The seat pitch, on the other hand… let’s just say, it ain’t Spirit, but still, I wouldn’t want to spend more than 3-5 hours in it. For a short flight, however, it was perfect! The trip cost me 7,500 Avios.
It was my first time in Kualu Lumpur, and I didn’t do any research beforehand. So I was surprised to see how modern the city was. While I had been told there isn’t too much to see and do to sustain your interest, I felt that was a bit unfair. Maybe Kualu Lumpur is not an ideal place for a long visit, but we didn’t get bored during the three days we were there.
I met my cousin Timmy, who was flying from Siem Reap. He had arrived a few minutes before me, and was waiting for me before the Immigration. Since he flew in business I sent him to the Fast Track line and went to the enormously huge line for poor coach schmucks like myself. 🙂 Despite the horrifying size of that queue, it moved amazingly fast and I was done in about 20 minutes.
You can use the public transportation to get to the Central Train Station and then Metro to your destination. But I had 2 pieces of baggage, and the cab price wasn’t too bad for the two of us. Hell, it wouldn’t have been bad even for a single traveler. I believe we paid about 80 MYR, which is about $18. We went to the Airport Limo kiosk and booked a Budget ride with a credit card (you have a choice of budget and standard, or something like that). Note the special window for the Citi Prestige and Premier cards, which was closed, unfortunately. Still, the line moved quickly, and we were done in about 10 minutes. I was concerned about getting a no-AC clunker, but, fortunately, it wasn’t the case. The AC blasted just fine during the 50 odd minutes that took us to get to the Hilton Doubletree hotel. There weren’t any major traffic delays.
The Doubletree is a huge and beautiful property within a 15-minute walk to the Petronas Towers. As a Category 2 Hilton, it costs only 10,000 HHonors points, and at this price, it’s really a no brainer! There is also Hilton, Kuala Lumpur, which has better reviews on Flyertalk, but it’s 30,000 points. Better or not, I seriously doubt that it’s three times better than the DoubleTree. The service was prompt and courteous. I would stay there again in a heartbeat. Alas, no upgrade
The above doesn’t mean we didn’t have problems at DoubleTree, but they were handled gracefully.
- Timmy’s room wasn’t ready, but they gave him a free dinner buffet coupon worth of $30.
- My first room smelled like wet, dirty mop. Actually, strike that, like a dozen of dirty mops. They moved me to another room, which resolved the smell thingy.
- On the second day, the shower faucet fell out and hit me on the foot. It was heavy and painful, which prompted me to turn on my DYKWTFIA mode. I thought about requesting the fix, but ended up changing the room again since I also didn’t like the single beds. Yes, they were really single! Not full, not even twin. What the hell do they think they are — Europe? 🙂 The third room with a king bed was OK. It was as small as the previous ones, but the king bed was very comfortable and it even had a couple of bathrobes. Probably to shut me up already. 😉 Maybe, it was an upgraded room. I never asked.
As a Gold member I had access to the lounge, which I almost never used, because we would leave earlier and returned very late. You can have breakfast in the lounge, but you really shouldn’t. You can have a buffet breakfast at the Makan Kitchen restaurant, which is totally amazing! I made quite a few pics of the buffet, I can’t find them. I know how it sounds, and I know that photos normally self-destruct, so I can’t explain that. Suffice it to say, it’s one of the best and most extensive breakfast spreads I’ve ever had.
Dinner, though, was not quite to the hype. I went with Timmy, who had a coupon, although I did not. The ad on display promised a few chef-prepared dishes in addition to the buffet, but they never gave us a menu or offered to bring anything. The buffet itself was extensive and good, but I didn’t feel it was $30 good. By the time I remember about the chef option, we were already full. What a tragedy! 😥
The lounge is small, but the balcony has a killer view.