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Golden Sands Resort by Shangri-La
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Reviewed February 13, 2014

What started off as a visa run from Phuket turned into a very relaxing, enjoyable five day break. The busy Chinese year saw a packed breakfast buffet but it was a lesson in efficiency. Great food and beautifully presented.

A hotel that others could do well to emulate.

Room Tip: Lovely rooms, comfortable and well appointed.
  • Stayed: February 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Review collected in partnership with shangri-la.com
1  Thank Roche B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 12, 2014

A long overnight and then connecting flight brought us to this hotel mid morning. The reception staff immediately set about trying to prepare our room early and we were able to rest after a short walk. The hotel staff were helpful and obliging throughout our 8 day stay.

Although over 30 years old the hotel has a modern 'feel'. The room were a good size, well furnished with plenty of clothing space. The bathroom complete with a proper bath was excellent. The balcony, overlooking the pools etc was very tasteful and a relief for early mornings and evenings. It would have had better balcony lighting to allow people to read in comfort in the evening. There was limited foxtel which we found disappointing. The rooms were well serviced.

The breakfast rooms covered a large area but were inevitably overcrowded nearly the whole time they were open. The food choice, covering an international cuisine, was good and well cooked. The only quibble was not being able to have pork sausage and bacon. The hotel is, after all, an international one even though predominantly in a Muslim country, and pork products were freely available on the streets and small eateries. Rethink needed here.

The hotel's outdoor facilities and services were good with everything people of all ages could wish for. There are many street vendors and good small restaurants to eat from in the evenings.

  • Stayed: January 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank colin_bishop1941
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SL_Penang, Colleague at Golden Sands Resort by Shangri-La, responded to this reviewResponded February 24, 2014

Dear colin_bishop1941,

Thank you for your kind feedback, which we value very much. We note your concerns as an opportunity for improvement.

We are pleased that you found our resort service and facilities to your liking. With regards to your points on the limited cable TV, we will certainly review your comments with our management team.

All our food and beverage outlets are pork free. We have noted your comments and will bring it forward for discussion with our management team.

Please be assured that we make every effort to improve and greatly value and appreciate your time and feedback.

Thanks once again and we look forward to welcoming you back again to Golden Sands Resort.

Warmest regards,

Suleiman Tunku Abdul Rahman
Director of Communications
Golden Sands Resort

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 11, 2014

We had a hill view room and I'd emailed ahead to ask for a quiet one due to the call to prayer (the speaker is right outside this side the hotel) and were given 365 which was quiet. However, on the last night there was a conference in the conference room and the music was very loud until late which did keep us awake.
Our room smelt damp but the windows do not open and it is a humid climate. We didn't bother to complain as I would imagine all the hill view rooms will have his problem but they did supply us with a plug in deodoriser which helped a bit. Room is badly in need of a refit though! The hanging rail in the wardrobe is about 8inch long and there is minimal drawer space so we had to live out of the suitcases - not ideal when staying for almost a week.
We were on a package with Kuoni so at check in, when asked for a credit card, we refused saying we were paying cash for everything. They excepted this which is unusual but may be worth a try if you particularly don't want an amount "blocked" on your card (this also worked at Traders Kuala Lumpur) they just blocked any room charging for our room number.
There were sun beds available at all times of the day so no "sun bed wars" but shade was rare so people with children were struggling a bit (and none of the sun beds are directly around the pool)
The water sports guys weren't a problem - a polite "no thank you" worked well. I would imagine if you're rude to them they will return the attitude!
There has been a leak in the sewage pipe out at sea and they are saying the contamination is minimal in this area but it did put us off going in the sea. They seem to be having a job to locate the leak so this may become worse yet.
We always went down to breakfast at 9.15 and never queued but we did see people queuing after 9.45 and the weekend didn't seem any busier.
Beware of the Haagen-Dazs stand at the pool. We bought 2 small scoops and 1 very small magnum type of ice cream and it cost £10! No wonder the bars and restaurants are empty if this is an example of food and beverage charging.
We ate at long beach cafe most night which we found to be good food. It took me two nights to pluck up the courage to eat here though as I view it as higher end street food which I usually avoid. We are at Bora bora too. The food was good but menu not overly varied.
For our trips we used Ocean Jupiter which I booked online in advance. They do have an office almost opposite the turning to Bora Bora. They charge £6 an hour (30 RM) for driver in air conditioned car. They sent Michael who seems to be popular. His English is excellent. He took us exactly where we wanted to go (with no shopping stops as requested) and added local things he though we would like to see. He even bought us lunch in a local cafe in Gerogetown. We are a well travelled couple in our early 50's and he was the best driver we have EVER had.

Stayed: February 2014, traveled as a couple
3  Thank GO50
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SL_Penang, Colleague at Golden Sands Resort by Shangri-La, responded to this reviewResponded February 24, 2014

Dear G050,


Thank you for taking the time to give your feedback, which we value very much. We note your concerns as an opportunity for improvement.

We have taken note of your comments with regards to the noise level of the conference. In future, please let our Duty Managers know so that they are aware of the situation.

We appreciate your reference to the room appearance and we will be looking into them with the department concerned. In regards to the leak in the sewage pipe which is about 1 km away from the resort, the situation has been rectified and there no further traces of water contamination in the river.

Your comment on the Häagen-Dazs has been noted and we will suggest to the outlet concerened to have less premier brand of ice creams available at the pool.

Please be assured that we make every effort to improve and greatly value and appreciate your time and feedback.

Again, thank you for staying with us and we look forward to welcoming you back again to Golden Sands Resort in the near future.

Warmest regards,

Suleiman Tunku Abdul Rahman
Director of Communications
Golden Sands Resort

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 9, 2014

Just spent four nights. The room, ocean facing, was a little run down. There was mold under the sink rim and on the shower ceiling. Also, the paint was peeling on the shower ceiling and on the balcony rails. The pools need some work as we found several missing tiles.

The food was good, if a little expensive. The breakfast is complimentary and has a wide range of options. The surf and turf buffet on Wednesday night was very good. They even had a section for kids.

We enjoyed the pools and water slide. The beach was was clean and we found a few shells. However, the sand is very course and is rough on little knees. Beware that there are several parasail operators that hog the beach. We were yelled at and chased away several times. So if you want to enjoy the beach, you only have a small stretch that is 'reserved' for hotel guests. The water isn't particularly clean as we found trash floating each day.

The staff is friendly, especially in the restaurants. The life guards didn't really do an adequate job policing the slide except when they wanted to do so. I have two small children who were overrun by older kids. While these kids were allowed on the slide, parents who wanted to slide with their kids were not allowed. Seems some rule changes and/or age limits are in order.

All in all, a nice place, but we'll be staying at the newer Hard Rock Hotel next time.

Stayed: February 2014, traveled with family
1  Thank nothinggreen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SL_Penang, Colleague at Golden Sands Resort by Shangri-La, responded to this reviewResponded February 24, 2014

Dear nothinggreen,

Thank you for your candid and specific comments regarding our rooms. We will certainly get our engineering team to look into the areas you mentioned to ensure our rooms are in top conditions.

We are pleased that you loved our surf and turf buffet. We will certainly convey your compliments to our chefs.

We are disappointed that you were not treated courteously by the water sports operators on the public beach. Please do approach one of our security guards for assistance should you feel uncomfortable in the near future.

Thank you also for your comments with regards to the slides rules and regulations. We will address this matter with our recreation team, however, with overall safety of all guests in mind.

Again, thank you for staying with us and we hope to welcome you back again in the near future.


Warmest regards,

Suleiman Tunku Abdul Rahman
Director of Communications
Golden Sands Resort

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 9, 2014

As the title states its a good family hotel with plenty of activities for the kids to do.
However we are a couple and do not yet have kids so we found there to be too many kids...
They have a 9 hole chip and putt golf course at the sister property next door, which at the time of booking our holiday was booked out, hence the staying at the Golden Sands.
We found the room service to be very slow, but in saying that the hotel was at capacity.
The restaurant by the pools had average food and average service, even at quiet times, and was quite hard to order unless you walked up to the bar to do so. Also a couple of the newer staff struggled with English.
We may re-visit here when we have kids and need them looked after for the day. ;-)
I have rated the 'value' of the Golden Sands as 'poor', as we paid the same amount to stay at the Eastern & Oriental which in my opinion is head and shoulders above this place.

Room Tip: Rooms facing the ocean are quieter, as long as they are not above the kitchen. Rooms facing the street have a mosque which can be quite loud during prayer.
  • Stayed: January 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank Chris P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SL_Penang, Colleague at Golden Sands Resort by Shangri-La, responded to this reviewResponded February 12, 2014

Dear Chris P,

Thank you for taking the time to share your feedback with us. With regards to some of the points that were addressed in your review.

I will be sure to share this with the team members and make necessary improvement as needed.

Thank you again for your time and we certainly look forward to serving you again in the near future.

Warmest regards,

Suleiman Tunku Abdul Rahman
Director of Communications
Golden Sands Resort

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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