Express yourself…

My daughter had to go to Kuching for some official business so I went with her and we stayed at this hotel

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- the sister hotel of the one where I stayed here and here.

It is located on the 1st floor of this building, the Wisma Phoenix along Jalan Song Thian Cheok…

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…but the entrance is at the back…

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…which I would think is a good idea as the main road is very busy and it would be difficult or inconvenient to drop off or pick up guests staying in the hotel.

Right in front is the Pullman…

Pullman

…and to the right is the Ariva Gateway, formerly known as the Somerset Gateway where I stayed once a long long time ago…

Ariva

This is the reception counter…

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…and mind you, this is, in fact, an award winning hotel, courtesy of tripadvisor…

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The lobby is very spacious unlike the one at the sister hotel, with one big section here…

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…and another section on the other side…

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There are also computers available for guests to go online…

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…and that was were I was able to drop by and reply to comments in my blog over those past few days.

The standard rooms are cheap ranging from RM49.99 only upwards and you get everything unlike at the one that is affiliated to that cheap airline where you pay for just the room and every little thing that you need or want comes at a price. However, I requested for a big room – the deluxe family with two double beds…

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…at RM133 per night and I would say that I was kind of disappointed when I checked in. The room was small…

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…and there was no closet for our clothes…

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…and there was no complimentary tea and coffee, just water…

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Other than that, the rooms have no windows so if you happen to be claustrophobic, you can switch on the tv so that you will be able to see the road outside…

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…and one more thing! You do not get breakfast with the room either…unlike at the sister hotel at RM135.00 a night (government rate), just two ringgit more and the rooms there are much bigger and a whole lot nicer too. This one does not give any special discount privileges on the rooms and the only thing in favour of it is the location and the cheap prices if you are staying in the standard rooms (Don’t quote me on this, but I hear they are very small!).

There is a convenience store two doors away…

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…and at RM5.99 per head, one can take the shuttle to the airport…

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In fact, when making your reservations, you can also request for the transport to pick you up upon arrival.

papakucing would be delighted to hear that even though there is only one storey and all the rooms are on Level 1, there is a lift…but you would need the room keycard to activate it never mind if you are going up or down…and they would only issue one card per room which can be quite a nuisance really as it being a special card, one cannot use any other card to slip into the slot to turn on the electricity in the room. At the sister hotel, they will issue you a 2nd card key but you have to pay a deposit which they will refund to you when you return the card as you check out of the hotel.

Well, this time around, it was good for us as Melissa had to go for something at the Hilton which is pretty close by but all things considered, I do not think I would want to stay here again the next time I go to Kuching. After all, I would get a much better deal at its sister hotel so I might as well go and stay there despite its slightly out-of-the-way location.

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33 thoughts on “Express yourself…

  1. LOL….must have lift …:p

    Alamak….big room also so small size ah..the toilet/bath room how? big or small

    Ok lah…but frosted glass doors! Seems to be the trend these days in the newer hotels. Might as well don’t have any doors then. Like the toilets at some remote Iban longhouses long ago…. :(

  2. honestly never stayed in a hotel
    well since i never travel haha

    Oh dear! I wonder whether Filipinos travel as much as Malaysians. But there are very many nice resorts in your country – maybe they’re mainly for tourists?

  3. No windows! I stayed in one hotel in HCMC for RM45 a night with no windows. Freaked me out…and we had to request for a windowed room the next morning. Found myself pacing up and down in the lobby till I was tired and ready to zzzz at close to 5am. LOL.

    I was quite ok with it…but at the sister hotel, there are nice views through glass panels on all sides – just pull back the curtains and let the captivating sights all around take your breath away…and that’s for only RM2 more!

  4. Hey, that’s really cheap! Rooms from under RM 50!

    It’s been a while since I’ve seen Wisma Phoenix. Little known fact: I used to live there for two months, in a tiny room with 5 other girls!

    Clean hotel though, but I don’t like the feeling of no windows. The traffic cam does help though, nifty, that one. :)

    Oh? 5 girls??? What did you have on? Some kind of orgy? Must be those units I can see in the photo…above the hotel floor.

    • Haha! No, my tenancy agreement expired but I had to stay on in Kuching for 2 more months and didn’t want to commit to another year’s agreement. Thus, I lived in overflow housing (like the ones above the hotel floor).

      It’s small and cramped and surprisingly expensive (RM 200 per month for a space not larger than half your living room – no kidding!!).

      5 other people were living there, in 2 other ad-hoc bedrooms, and we all shared a bathroom. It was hell, to be honest, I’ll call it a slum. :x

      It looks clean and new from the fresh coat of paint, but trust me, it’s not.

      Yup! Appearance can be deceptive! And with you as a tenant certainly did not help one bit, I’m sure. Muahahahahahahaha!!!!!

  5. Goodness…. I don’t think I would stay in a hotel room with no windows. And sounds like the sister hotel offers a much better deal too. The last time I was in Kuching (many years ago) I stayed in a services apartment which the name I’ve forgotten…. Oops.

    Yup…the sister hotel is a lot better but at the other end of Padungan – where Kingwood Inn is. The location is not so convenient if one does not have one’s own transport…and there isn’t really very much in the surrounding areas, that one.

  6. Aiyoo no closet? There are another 360 hotel located at my office (Hock Lee Building). I think that one far more better than this one. The price also not very expensive compare to this one. Got swimming pool lagi. hehe

    Yes, yes…that’s the sister-hotel. Cheap and very very nice. This time around, I chose this one as my daughter’s function was at the Hilton…and no way would I stay at that hotel right across the road, thank you very much.

  7. Hmm it reminds me of the hotel chain in Taipei that I used to stay in – reasonable rates, good location but small rooms and no windows! But I guess I didn’t mind it back then since it was really close to the trains and night markets and we’re out most of the time anyway. Most importantly, it’s clean! :)

    Yup, I agree 100%. After all, we spend most of the time outside…and only come back to sleep.

  8. although the room was a little small, i would be snuggling on the bed until noon, skip breakfast and straight out for lunch! :P

    Young people today seem to sleep so much!!! What a waste! One whole morning…and breakfast!!!

  9. It is so funny that you have to switch on the TV to get a view outside the hotel :D I see the beds took up much of the space.

    Not really – the room wasn’t that big…but it was ok. I’ve stayed in worse – like the one in Sungai Petani, KedaH. When I sat on the toilet bowl – placed sideways, my nose would touch the wall…and to take my shower, I would have to sit on the toilet bowl and shower – it was directly overhead. Never seen any room this small in my whole life!!!!

  10. SG has hotel which is cheaper that has no window too…

    There are many cheaper hotels with no windows – I just did not expect this one to be one of them.

  11. wow, no windows and closet! Imagine those with biz trip, how to hang the clothes wor >.<"

    Business people normally live out of their suitcases – they do not need a closet. I don;t think they have the time to bother about that.

  12. Won’t mind staying in hotel without windows as long as the location is covenient in every aspect. That place is considered in the city centre and easy access to find food and shopping complex.Good deal too.

    Yup! The location is definitely very good…and it is cheaper than most in the vicinity.

  13. Why didn’t you stay at Hilton since that’s where Melissa got something to attend to anyway? No need to stay in that room to feel claustrophobic, the minute I read that info until now I feel as though I can’t breathe!!!

    My 2 nights in this hotel not enough to pay for one night at the Hilton – government privilege rate. The last time I asked, probably enough for Pullman – but I’d rather save the money for other things. After all, this one’s just a stone throw away….plus we’re not on holiday – no need for luxurious hotel where I would stay in all day long just to pamper myself in the comfort.

  14. Next time you come to Kuching let us know. If my sisters are not back for a holiday you can sleep in the spare room at my mum’s place.

    No lah…I always have a preference for hotels.

  15. oh, i like that 360 thing setup in front of the hotel, it looks so contemporary and cool~~

    Didn’t think much of the area around it though – not really clean…and some more flowering plants would be good.

  16. i tried the real deal 360, as in hock lee 360, was disappointed to the core. my toilet could actually overflow, and i diligently asked them every morning to fix it, and when i requested for another room, they refused and said that they would fix the toilet. they never did, and imagine my horror when the toilet overflowed the moment i flushed. so, i made a complaint to the general manager of 360, and he replied me in the most sarcastic manner, though i did not reveal to him that i know the owners.

    Oh? I’ve stayed there three times, I think and I absolutely love it! No complaint – rooms good, staff good…only the breakfast’s so-so, not great. Only problem – location and when nobody comes to get you, you’re stuck there and there ‘s nothing much in that area…other than that miserable Hock Lee… I’d rather stay in the room and sleep.

  17. If given a choice, I preferred room with window. ;-)

    Of course…but many KL hotels, the smaller ones – you’d look out into the back lane between the blocks of shops…and it is not a very pleasant sight. I would always keep the curtains pulled…

  18. The beds look pretty comfy but I think a room without windows is a bit suffocating for me.. yeah, you can call me a claustrophobic! But I like the lobby, the computers and the shuttlevan… convenient…

    Yup…look on the bright side. It’s not all bad.

  19. This seems like a super budget hotel like Tune Hotel. I don’t mind if there are no windows, but I might not like it if there are no wardrobes especially when I’m travelling with my wife where wardrobes is a must to have item.

    She’s like me? I’d unpack, take everything out and arrange in the closet nicely…like at home. My missus and daughter would be quite happy to pull whatever they want to use…right out of the bags and suitcases.

  20. ooo, pullman. there’s a pullman in putrajaya, and there’s gonna be another one opening this year near petaling jaya :D

    Yup! This one in Kuching has been around for a few years now – just before my daughter left for her studies in New Zealand – end of 2009, I think.

  21. I agree with you that Papakucing would be pleased with the fact that all the rooms are at level 1 but the fact the the rooms are small may not be pleasing to him leh :p

    He’s so fussy kah? Yew ai ch’nee, yew ai ph’nee…yew ai tua liap nee!!! LOL!!!

  22. Can you slip another card (e.g. store card) into the cardholder in the room to keep the electricity going? That way, you can still use the keycard for the lift if someone remains in the room.

    Nope. Theirs has some kind of sensor thing – can only use theirs. I have lots from other hotels…all could not be used…unfortunately.

  23. Heh! heh! I remembered you stayed at 4 Points Sheraton Hotel in Kuching when you attended a lavish wedding, right? Thanks for sharing this new info of 360 so that I will choose this hotel in future. I always have to crack my heads real hard when booking hotels online in strange places.

    Yup, 4 Points is good but near the airport, very far from the city centre. This one is cheap, right in the heart of the city…but not so classy. There are many classy ones in the city including the Hilton & Pullman.

  24. The hotel lobby looks so spacy. I didn’t expect the room is small. But RM133 is kind of reasonable.

    Yup, it’s cheap by West Malaysian standard, that’s for sure…but for that kind of money, I can get a lot better here.

  25. Ah!! I thought I am weird, now at least I know, I am not the only one that cannot stay in a room that w/o window.

    RM50? Wow..cheap!

    I can tolerate for short stays – one or two nights but that does not mean that I like it. :(

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