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Shangri-La's Tanjung Aru Resort & Spa
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Reviewed October 28, 2012

We stayed at Shangri-La's Tanjung Aru Resort at the the of September 2012. We stayed in a Tanjung Executive Suite which was at the opposite end of the hotel to the pools and restaurants, therefore quiet. The room had a spacious balconey overlooking the gardens and ocean with comfortable adjustable pool beds togetherwith table and chairs if you wanted to eat outside. There was a separate lounge and dining area and two bathrooms!! The quality of the bathroom products was a nice extra touch. Bedding was very comfortable. . The Kinabalu Club is very good and I would definitely recommend it if you can afford to pay the extra. The staff are excellent, friendly and helpful, the lounge is comfortable and the drinks and nibbles in the evening are great. Breakfast at the Club in the morning is excellent. It is quiet and the view from the 4th floor overlooks the islands. The buffet area at Cafe Tatu is very busy from early in the morning. It does cater for all tastes and cultures but we preferred the Club room.
We enjoyed having late evening drinks at Coco Joes. They do a fabulous iced Margarita! One of the highlights was to go out to the islands snorkelling. Well worth the short boat ride. I wouldn't go to all the islands, just a couple. The coral that is close to the shore is bleached and damaged, but a bit further out are some lovely spots.
The staff at the hotel are friendly, charming and efficient and they really seem to care about the welfare of their guests,

  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank jengai
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 28, 2012

We stayed in this property in a suite in the Tanjung Wing for 5 nights.

Excellently maintained property. The suite is well furnished, has a nice balcony facing the mini-golf course and beyond that the sea.

The water play area and the swimming pool is great. And there are regular activities organised separately for the kids and for the adults.

3 travel agencies are available on the property to guide and help make arrangements for various local trips. Good service by the hotel staff all round. Easily available taxi service to go to/fro the city.

  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled with family
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Thank rushmore76
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 27, 2012

We had a 3 night stay here. The rooms were beautiful and spacious. Our room was on the ground floor of the Tanjung Wing, so we were able to walk out from our balcony onto the grass to watch the sunset. The view from the room was stunning.
The pool area was lovely, and has a few separate pools for kids and adults which is great. Unfortunately it was jellyfish season, so we couldn't swim in the beach :(
The breakfast selection is huge, and the other restaurant prices are quite high, but you have to expect that at a resort. The food at the chinese restaurant Shang Palace was delicious.
The shuttle to Rasa-Ria cost RM30 return, and you have to pay another fee to get in to the orangutans. The shuttle times allow you enough time to see the orangutans and then cool off with a swim. You can also order food and put in on your room at Tanjung-Aru which was handy.
The resort is a great place - especially for families, as there's a water park for the kids.
The cab price from the Airport is set at RM30, and it cost us RM25 to get to Jessleton Point Pier.

Room Tip: We enjoyed bein gon the ground floor in the Tanjung Wing.
  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank travel_dreamer80
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 24, 2012

Sabah is a very easy getaway from Manila as it is just over a 90 minute flight and the Tanjung Aru Resort is literally 5 minutes from the airport which makes it even more attractive. We had been there in 2011 but the main pool area and other parts of the hotel were closed for renovation so we decided to go make a return vist to see the finished product- and it is spectacular! We stayed in one of their Kinabalu Club Executive Suites which was lovely- very spacious with lovely views of the resort, the pool area and the beautiful blue sea in the distance. The Kinabalu Club is very good and I would definitely recommend it if you can afford to pay the extra. The staff are excellent, friendly and helpful, the lounge is comfortable and the drinks and nibbles in the evening are great. If you opt to stay in the Kinabalu wing (the newer wing) it is probably worth paying a bit more and getting a seaview room. The Tanjung wing is the original hotel and it seems to be a combination of regular rooms and various suites- not too sure what the advantages are of staying in the different wings!

The gardens of the hotel are lovely with a beautiful variety of exotic plants and flowers and the property is surrounded by the sea on two sides so there are beautiful views of the sea and the offshore islands. The newly renovated cafe is called the Cafe Tatu and it offers the usual morning and evening buffets with a wide range of food that seems to cater for all tastes. There is also a large outdoor eating area if you prefer to be outside and it has a smoking section for guests who are smokers. The morning buffet breakfast tends to be very busy so the secret is to get there early when it is less crowded and more pleasant. Apart from having a sandwich in Coco Joe's, the poolside restaurant, we did not really eat in any of the other outlets which include Peppino, a Italian eatery and also the Shang Palace, the usual Shangri-La Chinese restaurant. There is a large hawker food center just down the road from the hotel in Tanjung Aru which has a reasonable selection of food and it is only a 10 minute taxi ride into town where there are lots of good restaurants to choose from.

The new pool area is wonderful- it is made up of a large adult infinity pool, a smaller family pool and also a children's pool with lots of waterslides and water attractions. The adult pool is lovely and relatively quiet although the staff do not really seem to enforce the no kids policy. My only complaint is that the sun loungers are all lined up side-by-side so that your neighbour is literally only about 6 inches away from you and it is difficult to move the loungers to make more room. There are some huge sun umbrellas which are fairly effective although the whole pool area is very sunny most of the morning as there are not that many trees to create shade. You really do need your sunscreen! There is a stand near the pool where you can get cold water. I did suggest to the management that they could have their pool employees circulate with ice-water, cold towels and fresh fruit (done in many good hotels)- given the quality of the service in other parts of the hotel, poolside guests seem to be a bit forgotten. Obviously you can also order food and drink from the Coco Joe's menu but it would be nice to see a bit more attention paid to poolside guests!

We thoroughly enjoyed our stay at the Tanjung Aru and would definitely recommend it to anyone looking for a lovely resort in a very accessible location. It doesn't quite have the charm of some of the Balinese hotels but it does try to create an atmosphere and the decor of the hotel is quite reminiscent of some of the lovely hotels in Bali with bits of native art scattered around and some beautiful Malaysian furnishings. The staff at the hotel are friendly, charming and efficient and they really seem to care about the welfare of their guests, The Shangri-La chain of hotels obviously has a very effective training programme for its employees and the Tanjung Aru management are obviously very aware of the need to maintain standards throughout the hotel.

Room Tip: Try to get a seaview room as the views of the sea and the offshore islands are lovely. Rooms looking the other direction towards the city in theory have a view of Mount Kinabalu but it is often covered in clouds and not visible. The Kinabalu wing is the most modern part of the hotel and houses the Kinabalu Executive Club Lounge and rooms.
  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank Jamesinmanila
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 23, 2012

My family of 4 loved the Shangri-La Tanjung Aru Resort & Spa. I've been looking for a hotel like this for years. Plenty of friendly staff, excellent food (huge variety), plenty of amenities, beautiful. Children (14 & 12) had a ball. Rooms large and well appointed (even a powerpoint in safe!). Will return and have recommended it to family and friends.

  • Stayed: April 2012, traveled with family
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1  Thank SydneyFamily4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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