Genting Highlands

August 7-9, 2013

This trip was the first relaxed trip I’ve ever been to.  Relaxed in a way that I didn’t have to plan ahead what to do on day 1 and so on. It was actually nice, albeit you have to be more open with your budget.  Plus, there’s nothing much really to do and go to in Genting except to relax and chill.   And not to mention, this was my first out-of-the-country trip with the bf.  We were joined by friends from church and by my sister, who followed us the next day.

We availed of a package from Transtar Travel through Kevin’s mom, who holds membership and can avail some discounts. The package includes 2 way coach ride plus 2 nights accommodation in First World Hotel for 280SGD / couple.  The journey to Genting was a smooth one, given that we went there on a holiday season (Hari Raya and SG National Day back-to-back) we were expecting to encounter traffic.  Thankfully, there was no traffic at all, but maybe it was because we went a day early.  My sister who followed us the following day (August 8) was the one who experienced traffic.

We left Singapore around 7:30 and reached Genting at around 1:30. After doing the check-in which was pretty easy since they set-up automatic check-in counters for those who have done online bookings, we went to our rooms to freshen up and leave our bags then scouted for a place to eat late lunch.

I have to mention, it was sooooo cold in Genting.  You can literally see the fog surrounding the place.  It’s quite nice although there was a time in the afternoon that it was drizzling, but other than that, it was a fine weather to walk around in. The rooms don’t have air-conditioning because there’s no need, it was so cold in the evenings you wouldn’t even bother with the fan.

First World Hotel

First World Hotel facade not hard to miss actually with all its colors, but they could consider repainting it

First World Hotel facade
not hard to miss actually with all its colors, but they could consider repainting it

First World Hotel boasts of being one of the world’s largest hotel, although in all honesty, it’s not that great to shout out about.  Its location is convenient because there’s shopping mall, casinos and theme parks within the hotel.  The room we had was the Deluxe Room, which was so small that you barely have space to walk around.  It has two solo bed put together to make it like a queen bed, a small TV, bedside table and a dresser at the side.  It doesn’t have a closet, instead they provide hangers for your clothes. I guess I was kinda hoping for something better but maybe given the price it was okay.  The view from the window was, wait for it, another window from another room. I kept on getting scolded by the bf for opening the window curtains, because all you can really see was the curtains of the other rooms windows and they can easily see our room if they decided to draw their curtains. Anyways, that’s it for the hotel, I don’t do reviews but if you are looking for a cheap (cheap as compared to other hotels within Genting) accommodation, this hotel might be your only option.  It served our purpose anyway, sleeping and showering.  And given that its very convenient to all the attractions, its a good deal already.

Most of day 1 was just looking around the shopping mall, eating, chilling and more eating. We also went to one of the casinos to watch the people play, although I still honestly don’t understand anything about gambling.  In the evening we found a bar where there was live music from 10pm onwards, and it was a nice atmosphere for hanging out, and listening to live music, and dancing!

Theme Parks and Holiday Crowds …. Day 2 (Hari Raya)

Since we slept late the night before (or early morning the next day), we agreed to meet at around 11 am.  We had to wait for my sister to come from Singapore before we can go to the theme parks.  The moment we stepped out of the elevators and into the hotel lobby, we were like, WTF? How did this place became so crowded overnight? I mean yeah it was a holiday in Singapore, but the place was packed with mostly Chinese people. Anyways, getting around the area, especially the mall area was a difficult ordeal.  And it was drizzling a bit too so you can imagine how cold it was. We headed at this restaurant Bubbles & Bites, located in MaximsHotel.  Note that almost all the hotels are interconnected, you just have to know your way coz it can be sooo confusing. Bubbles & Bites serves continental food and i must say, their Mac and Cheese was very very nice.

wall puzzle Bubbles & Bites

wall puzzle
Bubbles & Bites

TIramisu (with cotton candy on the side)

Tiramisu
(with cotton candy on the side)

After the brunch we decided to just walk around while waiting for my sister. We went inside casinos and watched the players play pokers and other different games.  It was quite difficult to understand really, as I am not really a fan of these types of games, and most especially of gambling. We also walked outside and just basically wasted the time while waiting. At some point I got stressed because we were expecting my sister to come at around the same time as our arrival the previous day, but given that the traffic was bad coming from Singapore, she came at about 4pm. Good thing the coach she took provided food for lunch, and it was quite a relaxing ride for her (more on the coach later).  By the time she reached, we went back to the room to leave her things and make her change and we were off to the Theme Park.

Outdoor Theme Park and First World Indoor Theme Park

We bought the one-day pass for both outdoor and indoor theme park for 50 RM (although the regular price was 66 ringgit according to the website, we got a discount because they closed a few attractions due to the unpredictable raining).  Having been to Disneyland HK and Universal Studios SG, this theme park is not much. Aside from the rides, there are no shows that are normally the go-to in a theme park. The overall appearance is not so nice as well, as in it looks like its not being maintained regularly.  Although the rides are pretty extreme, and looks maintained, they could improve it by adding more fun and colors and activities inside. Well, maybe the fact that it was raining was also a factor, but still.  Anyways, we rode most of the rides, but there were 2 rides that I couldn’t forget, which was the Flying Coaster and the Space Shot.  Flying Coaster is like a typical roller coaster, but you are position of flying, as in like superman kinda thing.  It was an exciting ride for me. Another one is the Space Shot where they strap you in and take you on top of the tower (185 feet), then you go for a rapid vertical ascent and descent for about 2 minutes. The first drop was the worst of it actually, I literally felt my butt leave the seat while going down.

Spinner

Spinner

Space Shot

Space Shot

After riding all the possible rides outside, we went to the indoor theme park to take the rides there as well. Mostly are for kids, but there is also this roller coaster that would go around the mall as well as go outside then go inside again.  Bump cars has always been a favorite, and it can be found indoor.  There were a few attractions that we passed-up because the queue was going to take us forever and it was getting pretty late already. So when we were done with all the rides we decided to eat at one of the Chinese restaurants inside the mall for late dinner before retiring our tired bodies.  All in all it was a very fun experience, and damn tiring as well. 😀

TRANSTAR First Class Coach

The next day, we were set to go back to Singapore at around 2pm.  We all headed to the Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf at the Resort Hotel for some late breakfast. And we were finally able to get WIFI from there, haha.  After another continental breakfast, we went to buy some last minute things, and then head back to the room to check-out.  Again, checking out was a breeze because there were kiosks available within the lobby for hassle free check-out, we just slot in the cards after keying a few details and that’s it.  As we were still early for the departure, we took our time walking towards the MaximsHotel where the coach was stationed.  Thankfully, the moment the bus was there, we just boarded and was able to leave as soon as all the passengers were there.  The coach we took going to Genting was just the Premium Coach, which is like a more comfortable bus, though it still have massage and video and all. But riding the First Class Coach was a whole new different experience altogether.  This time, only one chair per aisle row, and there was enough legroom for the chair to be extended to a slanting/lying down position. They also provided us snacks and dinner, coffee and tea, as well as a blanket and one pillow. There was a game console for PSP if you want to play the games available in the monitor, plus a wide variety of videos you can choose from.  It was probably how a Business class airplane ride would feel like. 🙂

It was a fun and unique holiday experience, and I can’t wait for our next adventure together 🙂

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