Shangri-La Golden Sands Review: Seaside Getaway At The Edge Of Penang:
With a 3 year old toddler on our hands, and yet spoiling for an overseas trip, we’re making this Penang Shangri-La Golden Sands review from a 4D3N seaside getaway. Read this review to find out if it’s what you’ll consider doing too!
Getting to Batu Ferringhi to start our holiday
This trip, I got us a rental car to settle our transportation needs to offset some of the damage from the increase in airfares during June 2022. Driving through the worst traffic condition of landing on a rainy Saturday afternoon, we found ourselves settled into our room on the 3rd (number 2 on lift button) floor of Shangri-La Golden Sands.
Let’s go through the stay in terms of location, comfort and service.
Location for Shangri-La Golden Sands Review
We consciously made the choice to stay by the beach for this trip. This means no Georgetown for the hawker food, and more of restaurants within the hotel area. Even passing through Georgetown proved to be a nightmare, It took an hour and a half from Bayan Lepas airport to reach our hotel.
The stretch of road along Batu Ferringhi has little alternative routes, and the traffic slowed
to a crawl on the rainy Saturday afternoon of our arrival. Having survived the longer drive than expected, the location of Shangri-La Golden Sands is wonderful.
Taking up a plot of land at the north-eastern shore of Penang, we were literally a stone’s throw away from the swimming pool to the beach.
As the seaside activities were more suitable for older kids, we spent more time at the poolside. Shangri-La Golden Sands lives up to the family-friendly hospitality that we experienced in Shangri-La Orange Grove.
The plus point about staying at Batu Ferringhi is the neighbouring property are reputable establishments too, making it feel like a classy estate. To its side are Doubletree Resort, Hard Rock Hotel and Shangri-la Rasa Sayang.
There is a night market within 10 minutes of walking. That will encourage you to step out of the shadows of room service. There are street food, restaurants and 2 fast food outlets just outside the hotel.
Because of the seaside location, we spent our last dinner eating at the Sigi bar and grill, munching on pizza while watching the sun disappear behind thick layers of clouds.
Comfort for Shangri-La Golden Sands Review
We got room 222, which is really on the third floor because the hotel’s lift displays G as the first floor. That helped ease some of the disappointment of not having the unblocked sea view.
This is a deluxe room, with 30 square metres of floor area. It feels roomy between the bed and the balcony because there’s no furniture as obstruction. Perfect for families with kids that appreciate the planned empty space.
Watch the video walkabout tour to see what I’m talking about.
First thing I felt was the cold tiles to my feet. Unlike the Singapore outlet, the Shangri-La Golden Sands does not provide toddler size slippers to my dismay. For adults, they have proper flip-flops presumably because paper ones will wear out in the sand.
The king-sized bed was more than enough for 3 of us to sleep, without needing to exercise the option of a murphy bed that was included in our room. That was also why we had so much space, because the bed never did unfold.
Taking into account the perks of staying at a dreamy hotel by the sea, there were only 2 drawbacks to the comfort.
1. The curtains did not manage to shield away all the light. And living by the sea, the sunlight does hit strong. I wish we could turn the whole room dark.
2. Our bathroom sink was clogged, so whatever we washed away came right back from the floor, flooding the floor mat and making the room feel extra cold to the feet.
Other than that, I enjoyed the quick transition from pool to beach for a different feel and being able to hear the relaxing sound of waves lapping along the shore.
Even though the sign on the wall says the gym closes at 10pm, I was delighted to know it currently opens 24 hours, that enables a quick workout after daddy duties no matter what time I wake up from “pretending to nap”… for 4 hours.
Service of Shangri-La Golden Sands Review
The service at Shangri-La Golden Sands falls within expectation of an establishment of its standing. From the moment our car rolled in to the drop-off point, the attentive usher directed me to the parking.
Check in was smooth, with the hotel preparing a slice of cake and a signed card in celebration of the wife’s upcoming birthday. We requested for a baby cot that did not arrive. If we had that, then the toddler would have saved herself from one fall off the bed on the second night.
We had breakfast for 3 days, and the quality was very decent. Waiting time was reasonable too. They had a sign that says before 8.30am is off peak, then 8.30am till 9.30am is crazy and after that it’s moderate.
We never had to wait for 10 minutes despite going one morning at the 9.30am time slot. Good management of the crowd, ensuring there’s no shortage of food. The staff were prompt in clearing empty plates too.
The only time I had to remind the staff twice was for clearing the clogged basin. We had gone out and come back but the sink was still choked. A minor inconvenience, as I was prepared that they may house us in another room instead.
At the indoor playground, we were given the option of topping up for an older kids’ area or play at the free area with a kiddy slide. The staff advised us correctly that our 3 year old will not enjoy 2 of 3 slides at the older kids’ area.
With plenty of chances to experience the hospitality of Shangri-La Golden Sands, we left feeling well recharged at the end of the 4D3N stay.
Another seaside stay we did was at Avani Sepang. Compared to the minimalistic hut of Avani, this Shangri-La experience makes for an ideal stay for people from their 30s up who want to live in a concrete building with the safety of a little one as top priority.
Watch the room walkabout video:
Drag the screen around to enjoy a 360 degree view of the room!