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“A very nice resort for smaller kids, but food just okay”

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Shangri-La's Tanjung Aru Resort & Spa
Ranked #5 of 91 Hotels in Kota Kinabalu
Certificate of Excellence
San Francisco
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“A very nice resort for smaller kids, but food just okay”
Reviewed December 1, 2012

We stayed four four nights in a Tanjung Suite with our four year old. We upgraded when we got there, and they threw in an extra bed for free. Room was very nice, and staff were friendly and attentive. The pools and waterslides were perfect for our boy, although he didn't enjoy the kids club as much as others seemed to based on the reviews (we spent maybe 1/2 hour there overall). We took a day trip to the Rasa Ria resort to see the Orangutans and it was definitely nicer. However, there was more to engage our son here (and seemed to be fewer sand flies) so we made the right choice. We took a boat trip one day to some nearby islands for snorkeling, which was enjoyable but not breathtaking. Again good for our son as the water was quite calm and he was able to try it out for the first time.

The main disappointment was the kitchen - in five days we didn't have a single memorable meal. I recently stayed in the Jakarta Shangri-La and was blown away by their breakfast buffet, but this was not in the same league.

Stayed November 2012, traveled with family
Helpful?
Thank michaelY
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
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  • Sleep Quality
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  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
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West Yorkshire, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
68 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 57 helpful votes
Reviewed December 1, 2012

Tanjung Aru (T-Aru) an ok resort, however its a little dated and not nearly as good as its sister hotel the Rasa Ria, so basically if you are thinking of going to KK stay at rasa ria. T-Aru was ok but we had some issues around service, broken pizza ovens, late and incorrect orders, blah blah not good enough when you are paying these rates. the staff were excellent and work very hard, just didnt seem enough of them and so you see them running everywhere. We went there to escape bustling Shanghai for 'China's National Holiday' vacation but seems most of China had the same idea! and so seemed a lot noisier than rasa ria which seemed calmer and classier. For resorts i would rank S-La Boracay resort as my #1 so far (outstanding), then Rasa Ria, Cebu and T-Aru bottom of the pile. it does have some nice touches like the beach cabanas and the kids water park, gym quite good too, but its restricted on places to eat and very expensive for what you get, more canteen style than gourmet. its more an ok 4* than a 5* but with 5* prices. We booked to get access to the lounge and this was the worst place ever...room was awful, amenities basicc and food and beverage options limited, we used once and never went back. Rasa Ria offers more of everything in better surroundings and is less expensive when eating/drinking at pool or beach which is superb at RR. Sorry Shangri - La this resort is needs work.

Room Tip: we upgraded to a suite (family of 4) but the first room we got was tired, cramped and had faulty fix...
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank ShanghaiJohnnyC
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Nottingham
Level Contributor
29 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
Reviewed November 30, 2012 via mobile

Having stayed here some years ago, we do feel that standards have slipped. The room (despite being in a non-smoking wing) smelled strongly of smoke and there was no apology when we notified the hotel of this. They did try and spray something and even changed a filter to no avail. There was no offer of a change of room. The rooms appeared tired. Our rooms were not turned down in the evening which is just inexcusable for a 5 star hotel. We found the lunch and breakfast buffet to be patchy in that some items were really good and some horrible. A few of the family members left with an upset tummy. We only ate at the hotel suggesting that some food items were less than aggreable. We left somewhat dismayed that this once superb hotel had slipped so far down in it's standards. Truly disappointing.

  • Stayed November 2012
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank baroda2borneo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed November 26, 2012

We come with our 3 year old kid. But the lady who check us in just keep us waiting for a room is available. Other couple, foreigner without kids who check in after us, got their room immediately. When we are still waiting after we have a ten minutes walk around the lobby and swimming pool. I notice they are also book the room in Tanjung wing. I really can't understand why our room is still not ready. I believe becoz we are Chinese. After we got our key card, this lady just dump me the card and no introduction at all. Compare to others, they would should the map, tell the guest about the complimentary wifi etc. she know our departure flight is 7.55pm, when I ask if we can request late check out, this late just told me no and u need to pay for it if u need a late check out. She don't even bother to say I can try on that depends on availability. We stayed st Penang shangarila last year who allow us with late check out and staff just a lot nicer. I will definitely never come back and will not recommend to others.

Stayed November 2012
Helpful?
8 Thank Miranda C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
7 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed November 26, 2012 via mobile

Highly recommended. We have just returned from a wonderfully relaxing stay at this Resort. The staff are very friendly and helpful, keen to make your visit a memorable and enjoyable experience. The rooms are very clean and comfortable, the breakfasts superb. We are ready to book for a return visit as soon as possible..... it was the best holiday we have had for a very long time. J & G Perth WA

Stayed November 2012, traveled with friends
Helpful?
3 Thank scruffyGdog
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Salisbury, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
54 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 43 helpful votes
Reviewed November 23, 2012

We spent 5 nights here in November 2012 and would highly recommend this hotel. We had a ground-floor room in the Tajung wing with a beautiful sea view - it also had a wonderful view of the sunsets. Both the room and the en-suite bathroom were large, modern and very clean; the bed was huge and very comfortable. The air conditioning was extremely good - there was also a fan on the balcony which was very welcome given the heat. The staff are polite and very helpful. Breakfast is fabulous - the choice of food is amazing and it was wonderful to be able to sit outside and eat whilst looking out at the sea. The infinity pool is lovely - try it late afternoon/early evening when nobody else is there. It's also worth going to the Sunset Bar - and taking advantage of the special prices on drinks during the sunset hour. There are a couple small shops - one sells snacks/souvenirs, etc and there is also a tour desk - we booked some trips with them which were were very reasonably priced and very efficiently run. The Mari Mari cultural village is really interesting (not at all tacky as we had feared!) and it's well worth going out to one of the islands to go snorkelling. Overall, we had a fabulous time and really didn't want to come home!

Room Tip: The Tajung Wing has wonderful sea views and views of the sunset.
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank steveR11_11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
North Wales
Level Contributor
225 reviews
50 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 121 helpful votes
Reviewed November 23, 2012

We simply can't fault this hotel. We upgraded to a Club Seaview room- was it worth it? Well for us it was. The Club gives you a quieter breakfast , tea and coffee all day, and drinks and a limited buffet between 1700 - 1900. The rooms have a DVD and a great view. My advice is to consider how long you think you will be on the grounds, and add up how much you'd spend... You'll be surprised. We had 5-6 glasses of wine, along with gin and tonics for 'free' with our upgrade.

The main selling point for us are the staff. Simply the best we have ever experienced , anywhere in the world, in any star hotel. Our first point of contact upon arrival with no bags was Zarina. She should be destined for bigger things - Shangri -la Senior management take note. She was smiling, efficient, friendly, understanding, thoughtful and welcoming, and provided us with an emergency pack to tide us over until our baggage arrived. Throughout the holiday she made time to chat to us, providing us with information when we required it, even seeking us out when we weren't in our room. Brilliant service.

Next in the Club lounge are Andy and his team - Duncan, Bryan, Stassy and Johnny to name but a few. Again they are attentive, friendly and full of advice. They provided us with very slick service without being overbearing.

Tulip was entertaining, and what a great life she has led - and it was very interesting to talk to her about CSR.

I hope the Shangri-La operate a staff value fund, because as brand ambassadors these colleagues have done a fantastic job. To put it simply , we will be back, and have already recommended this brand to our friends and colleagues.

Overall, every member of staff in the hotel had a smile and a hello, which made the whole stay very pleasant.

One thing the management need to look at... Those in BLUE shirts need to up their game and be more friendly. There is a marked difference between them and the rest of the staff, and on occasion the greeting was rather forced. This is a minor observation, but something that needs to be looked at

Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
3 Thank welshman279
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Shangri-La's Tanjung Aru Resort & Spa

Property: Shangri-La's Tanjung Aru Resort & Spa
Address: 20 Jalan Aru, Tanjung Aru, Kota Kinabalu 88100, Malaysia
Location: Malaysia > Sabah > West Coast Division > Kota Kinabalu District > Kota Kinabalu
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Romantic Hotel in Kota Kinabalu
#1 On the Beach Hotel in Kota Kinabalu
#2 Business Hotel in Kota Kinabalu
#2 Spa Hotel in Kota Kinabalu
#3 Family Hotel in Kota Kinabalu
#3 Luxury Hotel in Kota Kinabalu
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:5 star — Shangri-La's Tanjung Aru Resort & Spa 5*
Number of rooms: 495
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A paradise for the senses surrounded by natural beautyA gentle breeze caresses your face as you wake to the sound of waves lapping the beach. The balcony opens up to an inspiring vista of sparkling coral islands and swaying of palm trees. Tunku Abdul Rahman Park, bordered by crystal clear waters and lush vegetation Sophistication surrounds you in a lavishly decorated suite inspired by Borneo’s rich cultural heritage. Shangri-La’s Tanjung Aru Resort and Spa, Kota Kinabalu, is a perfect tropical getaway, a luxurious tranquil retreat just a short drive from the city.Yet, excitement beckons as you set out to discover all Kota Kinabalu’s delights. Making your way to Kinabalu National Park, you are thrust into a jungle paradise of natural wonders, rugged landscapes and scenic beauty. From the Rafflesia, the largest flower in the world, to the famous Orangutans in their natural habitat, it only gets more breathtaking every step of the way.The afternoon is spent exploring the picturesque town of Kota Belud. As Sabah’s largest and most popular open market, you find gems of all sorts, ranging from handmade handicrafts to mouth-watering local delights like natural honey.Back at the resort, you look forward to a sunset cruise, which departs from STAR Marina, to catch Borneo's famous sunset. Not long after, you wind down at Coco-Joe’s Bar & Grill. Lounging atop one of the beach-dining platforms, over cocktails and a delectable seafood tower, you continue to enjoy the sound of overlapping waves on the shores of Sunset Beach. A pampering session at CHI, The Spa rounds off the day. With treatments based on traditional Asian healing philosophies, you lose yourself in an enchanted and indulgent journey, all on the resort’s private spa island.For every experience here, you are surrounded by natural beauty. And it all begins at Shangri-La’s Tanjung Aru Resort and Spa, Kota Kinabalu ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Shangri-La`s Tanjung Aru Resort And Spa
Shangri-La`s Tanjung Aru Hotel Kota Kinabalu
Shangri Las Tanjung Aru Resort
Shangri Las Tanjung Aru Hotel
Shangri La Kota Kinabalu
Shangri-La's Tanjung Aru Resort & Spa Kota Kinabalu, Sabah

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