We stayed in the Coral View for 4 nights and 3 days and enjoyed our time in the Perhentians hugely. As others have commented, being able to snorkel directly from the the hotel is a real bonus and we saw all kinds of reef fish/corals off the hotel beach plus turtles in the next bay only 5 minutes walk away. Our package was full board and included a half days snorkelling trip, which was one of the highlights of our holiday and really recommended. The gardens are well maintained and pretty - but only lower down the hill near the restaurant - the further you go up the hill, the denser the chalets and the garden is non existent. We did enjoy the monkeys which visited and the lizards and huge bats at dusk. If wildlife is not your thing, the Perhentians may not be your sort of place.
The restaurant was good and had an interesting and varied menu, but the serving staff and kitchen struggled at peak times to provide a reasonable service and on two out of the four nights we ate there, we had to wait more than one and half hours for our order to be taken and the first course to be served, which we considered to be an unreasonably long wait. No alcohol is served or can be drunk in the restaurant, so take your own for consumption in your room if this is going to be a problem for you. There is a bar about 5 minutes walk along the beach, which does serve alcohol as well. On the plus side the restaurant does do really good fresh fruit shakes and juices.
Our rooms were so called deluxe hillside view rooms, for which read very ordinary rooms with no view at all. They were perfectly adequate, but poorly maintained and in need of update. 5 our of 7 light bulbs in our room were not working on arrival - and when we left 4 days later. The garden and sea view chalets looked a much better bet and by virtue of being closer to the restaurant and closer to the action - our rooms were a good 5 minutes walk uphill from the restaurant - better maintained and looked after. Where our chalet was is so enclosed with trees that little breeze reached it and nothing dried at all, whilst damp things quickly got mildew. The bathroom was poor with only cold water in the basin, mouldy grouting and inadequate water pressure. The generators were noisy. The bedding was tired and faded, as were the towels, which we passed every morning hanging out on the banisters of the steps down hill to dry. Not your average hotel solution to trying to dry stuff.
Wifi is only available within a very limited area of the front desk, which was normally crowded with people manically checking their e-mail, but nearly having to sit in each others laps in order to be within reach of the signal. This signal was also pretty erratic.
Given the situation in the Perhentians where there are no internal roads, no ATMs (take all the cash you might need with you), no village on Pulau Perhentian Besar and no mains electricity or water so that everything for the 200 or so guests has to be brought from the mainland and transferred from a large boat to a small boat to be brought ashore, (romantic when you arrive, but not straightforward, specially given tides, if you are running a hotel) the standard the hotel maintains is surprisingly good, and the hotel staff were generally helpful. The transfer process was efficient. I am sure there are many worse places to stay in the Perhentians, but do not come expecting real luxury - we felt this was almost camping under a solid roof. The location makes up for quite a lot; the view is great when you are on the beach and the water and beach were clean.
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- Also Known As:
- Coral View Island Hotel Pulau Perhentian Besar
- Hotel Coral View Island