Thursday, 13 May 2010

in summary ...... COMFORT

I still have some postings to complete about our time spent in the Highlands, but thought that as we arrived back home last night I should do a short summary of the five days we spent there.

Already I have been receiving email from people asking for more information .... so hopefully this blog posting will be of help to them too!

We first decided to visit the Cameron Highlands after friends of ours spent a few days there last December, they drove from Singapore and stayed at The SmokeHouse Hotel.

We do not drive nor do we have a vehicle, so public transport is our only option.

We booked the Konsortium Bus to take us overnight on Friday evening May 7 and bring us back to Singapore on Wednesday May 12.  For the two of us it cost us $220.00 return. The bus was super comfortable with reclining seats. There were two drivers and both were very considerate and helpful at all times ..... plus they were good drivers!

Our seats were the same as these, we chose the front seats 1B and 1C and we were very comfortable. The bus had four stops, two of them being for 'meals'. Though for next time or for other travelers I would suggest dress warmly for the overnight trip.


We arrived at our destination at about 7.30am on the Saturday morning. The driver dropped us near by to the hotel which was much appreciated.

On arrival at the hotel we were greeted warmly by the reception staff, but what they must have thought of the two zombies that walked in I do not know!! I think we were in a daze, was it the overnight bus trip, the lovely cool morning or the ambiance of the hotel that we had just walked into?

But they sat us down, offered tea or coffee and then after the check in showed us to our room. Room? It was a full on suite!! Amazing and we were more than happy with what we were shown.
The hotel is old ..... well by old, I mean built in 1937. It is not some fancy new hotel recently built with no character!

as I mentioned in an earlier blog posting:

I had read most of the comments on Trip Advisor prior to our booking, and noted quite a mixed bag of comments. Some people do complain just about anything, some complaints were about it being old .... well yes it is, it was built in 1937. So yes I guess that is old. 

Surely people would expect it to 'look' old if it was built in 1937?
That is part of it's charm. 

I think some people maybe hard to please as well. We were happy to do the booking and try it for ourselves. 

We couldn't have been happier.

Our suite was better than we expected. We had a large bedroom, a two part bathroom, a large lounge area and a small second bedroom.  No one could possibly be unhappy with a suite such as this.
This hotel would not suit everyone, if you decide to stay here you must realise that some area's need maintenance (which is being addressed) also you need to remember that it is advertized as an "olde Worlde Hotel" and this is what it is ..... you come here for the atmosphere, the ambiance, the large rooms or suites, the wonderful meals served in the dining room and the service. 

This is all about fine country hospitality at it's best....

If someone asked me if I could describe the hotel and my holiday in just one word. I would say COMFORT.

It is not the cheapest hotel or dining room in the Cameron Highlands. But I am a believer in "you get what you pay for" and when we want service we expect to pay for it. We certainly got it at The Smokehouse Hotel.

But back to COMFORT ...... by comfort I mean that is how we both felt. We felt very comfortable in the hotel, we felt comfortable sitting in the dining area or the bar or in the lounge area's. Our rooms were comfortable, yes they were old by some peoples standards, but it does not take away from the comfort of the room. The bathrooms are gradually being upgraded which is a necessity in any hotel after a few years. 

Comfort in the dining room? yes!

I enjoy "comfort food" ..... in fact we both love comfort food, the foods we remember as children or curled in front of a fire in the winter time.... scotch broth, home made bread rolls, bubble and squeak, vegetable pie, Beef Wellington, creme brulee, bread and butter pudding, fruit cake or Devonshire Tea complete with home made strawberry jam and the most delicious whipped cream ever!

The gardens are also 'comfortable' ...... you can find all sorts of little places to sit quietly and read or think. All the flowers are beautiful and there are many tables set around the gardens for you to enjoy afternoon tea in the sunshine of the garden.... and yes, even if there is no actual physical sun shining, there is definitely sunshine in the garden.

As for service .... this cannot be faulted. Well not by us anyway. It is the little things with service that is important and the Smokehouse Hotel knows how to provide this.

Madam Nancy Lee is the most gracious hostess of all. She is there to guide you, offer advice, help, suggest places to visit, whatever you need or want you only have to ask and if it is at all possible, it will be supplied.

To know a little more of Madam Lee and the hotel itself, do read THIS ARTICLE.

We walked to Tanah Rata from the hotel, we walked around the golf course a couple of times and did a trip to the Tea Plantation and Strawberry Farm. There was still much to see by the time we left yesterday morning....

But we have to leave that for another day!

Our trip back to Singapore on the Konsortium Bus yesterday was comfortable and an easy drive back, We read, we played solitaire, we napped and we talked ....

and arrived back home safely by 7.30pm!

Thank you to everyone at The Smokehouse Hotel for an enjoyable stay and thanks to the drivers of the Konsortium Bus for a safe trip to and from the Highlands.

stay tuned for further blog posts on the strawberry farm, the tea plantation and our many walks in the area.


Click here to read about Booking the Bus.


To read about the bus trip on May 7 to the Highlands, click HERE.


For the posting of: In summary .... COMFORT


The posting on The Smokehouse Hotel is here.


Click here for the blog posting on the Rocking Chair

To wander around the gardens of the hotel, click here.


The blog about the flowers of the Highlands, click HERE.


(update) To read about the bus trip on December 23 to The Highlands, click HERE 

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update Jan 2011

a few new links that maybe of interest to you:









.

2 comments:

cajunsis said...

Sounds wonderful - a place Steve and I would love. Thanks for sharing :-)

B said...

ah, fond memories of the Cameron Highlands....we loved our trip up there but didn't stay at the 'ole smokehouse'. B&Mx