Those who follow my travels know that whenever I can stay in any Sofitel or InterContinental, because they are the luxury hotels of the hotel loyalty programs where I accumulate my points. However, I was willing to try Mandarin Oriental in Kuala Lumpur, as several friends have already stayed there and enjoyed it a lot.
The Mandarin Oriental has a great, central location by the Park and close to the Petronas towers as well.
I arrived at the hotel around 19:00 and the check in process was very smooth and I was immediately attended to – probably due to the time of day and it being Saturday. As soon as the check-in agent located my reservation in the system and saw that my room was with Club Lounge access, she took me to the Club reception desk for me to check in there.
When we arrived, another receptionist was already waiting for me and the first thing he did was offer me a drink. The service was super fast and he gave me all the benefits I had selected at the time of booking. Let me explain….
Fans of Mandarin Oriental
The Mandarin Oriental hotel chain does not have a loyalty program in the traditional sense where you earn points with your booking. Instead, program members (it’s free to join) have the option of choosing three benefits to use during their stay.
Currently, the benefits offered are:
- Early check in
- Late checkout
- Breakfast (every day during the stay)
- Spa or Dinner Credit
- Room Upgrade
- High speed internet
- Gift for special occasions
- Ironing Service
In my opinion, breakfast, room upgrade and late check-out or early check-in (depending on your flight time) are the best benefits. Click here to read our article about the program.
As I had already booked a room with Club Lounge access and my departure would be very early, I only chose the room upgrade as a benefit. And let’s say this didn’t really work out for me!
My reservation was a Club Deluxe City View room and my upgrade was to a Club Deluxe Park View. I must have stayed on the same floor and room layout and just moved to a different view. The view was great and I can’t complain because the hotel delivered the benefit I requested, since they sell these rooms at higher prices.
As I said above my room was a Club Deluxe Park View on a high floor, and generally I liked the room a lot. The space, though a bit small to be honest, was well thought out, with lovely decor and with everything you would expect from a luxury hotel.
The bed and pillows were super comfortable. I just went straight to sleep every day and only woke up with the alarm clock torturing me the next morning! Not even the jetlag kept me from sleeping!
A definite plus point was that both bedside tables had easily accessible USB outlets and sockets. Ah, if every hotel were like this !!
Another detail that I thought was great was the master switch light control on one of the tables that switched off the lights for the entire room. Just push a little button and everything went out – how wonderful! After all, who hasn’t ever walked around a hotel room trying to figure out how to turn off all the lights before bed?
In addition to the “magic button”, there was a clock radio and the TV remote control, which was always placed on the nightstand when they did the turndown service. There was a lot of attention to detail in the hotel.
By the side of the bed and near the window was a sofa with a coffee table and next to it a desk that even included various office supplies. Ideal for those on a business trip. There was even a small stapler among the supplies. I admit it was the first time I saw something so comprehensive in a hotel.
Opposite the bed was the television.
Turndown was done every day where the bathroom towels were changed, the curtains closed and the bed turned down. In addition, the water bottles were also replenished.
Unlike the vast majority of hotels, the water was not in disposable bottles. They were glass bottles – another plus for the hotel. Nowadays where we need to reduce the use of plastic, this is a great initiative!
I used the laundry service and my shirt was brought to the room in a box. Another example of attention to detail.
And finally, when I arrived in the room there was still a welcome gift waiting for me. Please note that according to the Fans of Mandarin Oriental program, all guests should receive something.
The bathroom was a good size, with a bath, waterfall shower and toilet in a separate area.
The toiletries, shampoo, liquid soap and conditioner were from the KAN range. There was also mouthwash and a box with a host of other products such as bathtubs, cotton swabs and nail file.
The marble sink was of a large size and with another example of attention to detail. Look how I found my personal effects coming back to the hotel at the end of the day. This is not often seen even in luxury hotels.
The lounge is on one of the highest floors of the hotel and the view is great! In addition, it is large enough that it didn’t ever feel crowded or busy.
Tables overlooking the park were the most popular, and hard to come by. I arrived early for happy hour and they were already busy.
Although the hotel is quite large, during my stay the lounge was always very quiet and the service was exemplary. All the staff spoke English perfectly and were very courteous every time I needed some information.
From one side of the lounge you can see the hotel park and pool. On the other side you have a great view of the Petronas Towers. My suggestion is to sit on one side each day, so that you can enjoy all the views.
The lounge is undoubtedly one of the most comprehensive I have ever seen in terms of the food offered. If you want to, you don’t need to go out for dinner, as unlike many hotels that only offer canapes during happy hour, they offer full meals. Starting with breakfast, the variety was excellent.
As might be expected, there was a cook to prepare omelettes etc at breakfast.
There was a wide variety of hot dishes. The selection of cold cuts and cheese was also quite wide but there was only no ham or bacon, since Malaysia is a Muslim country.
For those who like it, the variety of teas was impressive!
Like every good breakfast, there were yogurts of different flavours and dried fruits to accompany the cereals. As for fresh fruit, the options usually offered were: pineapple, watermelon, mango and melon.
The variety of natural juices and breads was great too. However, there were not many cakes or pastries.
As with breakfast, the selection of hot dishes during happy hour was excellent. Here are some examples and the only thing to watch out for is the chilli – if it’s not your thing. Malaysian dishes are usually spicy!
The hotel’s main restaurant, where breakfast is served, is a great alternative for those who have access to the Loungebut want to try something different during their stay. As expected, the variety is much larger and has specific areas devoted to Chinese, Indian and Malay cuisines. The only thing to consider is that it is not quiet like the Club Lounge.
There are also other restaurants specializing in different cuisines. Are they:
- Mandarin Grill
- Cantonese Cuisine
- International cuisine
- Contemporary poolside kitchen – the most informal of all
- Japanese cuisine
- Patiesserie on the ground floor
There is also a wonderful bar and sweet shop.
The Cantonese restaurant is fine dining and super stylish.
The poolside restaurant, Aqua is great for an aperitif and a beer at the end of the day.
For those who just want a cup of coffee and don’t care about the heat, the Park View Café is very pleasant.
I left the hotel early to head for the airport and noticed that there was a coffee station set up next to reception if guests wanted to have a drink before leaving. Also, the night before I was offered the option of having a picnic breakfast ready at check-out for me to take and eat in the car on the way to the airport.
The infinity pool is an invitation to relax and cool off in the late afternoon, or even early in the evening. There is one pool for children and one for adults.
As soon as we arrived at the pool, an attendant would bring the towels to the chairs and set them up for us.
Gym and Spa
The hotel’s fitness room is very well equipped and has absolutely everything anyone would need to work out.
The spa also leaves nothing to be desired. There are a variety of treatments, relaxation rooms and hot tubs.
How to book
I made my reservation directly from the Mandarin Oriental Kuala Lumpur website so that I could select the benefits of Fans of Mandarin Oriental that. You only have access to program benefits if you book directly with them.
Now if you’re not interested in the benefits of the program, then it’s worth comparing prices with other sites like such as Club 1 hotels. You could also look at using an agent that gives additional benefits similar to the MO fans such as our partner’s Propeller. This would normally give you free breakfast, upgrades and $100 spa or restaurant credit depending on the property.
My stay was perfect and if I return to Kuala Lumpur I will definitely stay at the Mandarin Oriental again. My only comment, which I mentioned above, was the fact that the room was a bit smaller than I expected.
If I think about other luxury hotels in Europe, for example, the value for money of the Mandarin Oriental Kuala Lumpur is excellent. The hotel is not exorbitantly expensive and the service offered is great.