I stayed at the Cinta Ayu "hotel" section of Pulai Springs resort on Chinese New Year (24th). As a hotel, this is a fairly standard 4 star property. What makes it truly exceptional, however, is the resort it is part of. 36 holes of golf over two courses, a huge and quite traditionally designed club house and a tennis centre. The club house has a spa, snooker room, cinema and children's creche. Also attached to the club house are two large swimming pools, one rectangular and the other free-form.
The Cinta Ayu "hotel" section is where most of the accommodation is located. Although this works as a hotel, it was clearly originally designed as serviced apartments. All the rooms a good size and have kitchenettes, where you can prepare food (although I don't think you are supposed to cook). The room I had was of modern design, clean and in good condition. The only gripe I have is the towels were too thin.
There are two main restaurants, the Gleneagles Terrace and the Qing Palace Chinese restaurant. Gleneagles serves pretty standard Western and Asian food in passable surroundings, either indoors, or outdoors overlooking the golf course. The Qing Palace, on the other hand is really quite good and almost worth the trip by itself.
The only thing that is a bit shabby is the "English Pub" downstairs (actually quite authentic, with a slightly smokey atmosphere and threadbare carpets, etc, for a moment I thought I was back in 1973 in South London). I just wish the band would turn down their amp a bit, which bordered on the painful at times.
Overall service is "Malay" style, which is polite and keen to please, but sometimes a little slow or suffering from minor miscommunication. However, nothing that a little patience and a smile can't put right. The booking procedures for golf, spa, restaurants and the hotel itself went very smoothly. I booked through the hotel website and took only about 30 seconds, which I thought was bound to screw up. However, was pleasantly surprised when I arrived and they had all my details.
This is a great place for a break for a couple of days. I travelled with some adult friends and we played golf, but there were plenty of families with kids around who were there for the other facilities. We had a great time and I will certainly be back here again and look forward to playing the other golf course.
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- Also Known As:
- Pulai Springs Hotel Johor Bahru
- Pulai Springs Johor Bahru