Set up in the hills, 1,500 meters above sea level, you’ll find the charming Cameron Highlands Resort, a boutique colonial style hotel in the area of Cameron Highlands.
Back in the 1930’s, the resort was originally just a cottage. As time went by, the cottage was extended, and expanded some more – from 16 rooms, it has grown to a 56 room boutique hotel.
The actual design and architecture of this hotel is deeply rooted in Colonial British and European influence. Why? You see, in the late 1800’s, the area of Cameron Highlands was discovered by British National, Sir William Cameron. Yes, that’s where the name Cameron Highlands came from. Because of the cooler climate up in Cameron Highlands, by the early 1900’s, the area became a holiday favourite amongst British expats, who were all looking to escape the summer heat.
As Cameron Highlands grew in popularity, the demand for accommodation grew, and so several hotels were set up… including what we know now as the Cameron Highlands Resort.
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Star Rating: 5 Stars
Location: Tanah Rata in Cameron Highlands (Pahang, Malaysia)
Number of Rooms: 56
Number of Restaurants/Bars: 4
The Experience at Cameron Highlands Resort
No matter the weather, shine, rain, or fog, the Cameron Highlands Resort is romantic, it’s nostalgic, it’s charming.
I felt that the hotel was decorated extremely tastefully – there was a good balance of heritage influences with a modern twist. I enjoyed looking at the various pictures on the wall, which shared the history of this property. And my favorite was the original tiling all through the floors of the hallway.
There are various room types to choose from at the resort, depending on your requirements. Of the 56 rooms, 44 are deluxe rooms, with 4 offering interconnecting options. This means that you can do a 2-bedroom option, which is perfect if you are traveling as a family (such as in my case, as I was with my parents).
All the rooms are spacious, clean, nicely lit with a fusion of modern and heritage deco. The bed is well sized, with crisp white linen. My favourite touch – the ‘CHR’ initials embroidered on the pillow.
The bathroom was a decent size, with black marble counters, well stoked amenities, and a rain shower. Most rooms don’t have a bathtub, except for the Junior Suites.
The rooms all have balconies, which over looked the front area of the hotel and golf course area, which is just across the road. The noise from the road is really not bad at all, but should you be very sensitive to noise, let the reception know. There are some rooms available that offer less noise, but it is all subject to availability.
Upon entering the resort, to the left is the front desk, that then leads you into the Jim Thompson Tea Room. But to the right is the Reading Room. The room was really lovely, and a peaceful spot to get some peace and quiet, and tuck into a book.
Throughout the resort free Wi-Fi is offered to guests, and I found it to be reliable and fast.
There is also a lovely spa area available to guests. I was sad that I did not get the chance to experience it on this occasion, but I was able to take a peak at the facilities. I was told that all spa treatments first start with a traditional ‘tea’ bath – yup, that means soaking in tea. After this ritual, you begin your treatment.
In terms of eating and drinking, the Cameron Highlands Resort offers 4 options for guests, depending on what you are after.
Afternoon Tea in the Jim Thompson Tea Room
In the afternoon, why not soak into a traditional English afternoon tea in the Jim Thompson Tea Room.
We enjoyed a range of Boh tea, while indulging in a variety of sandwiches, pastries and scones. Plus, as a bonus, the waiter also brought out freshly baked quiche – that was actually my favourite.
If you are looking to enjoy an afternoon tea experience here, it is RM45 (A$14 | U$11) for 1 person or RM80 (A$25 | U$19) for 2 and is offered between 3pm-6pm daily.
Steamboat at Gonbei
For the evening, you have the option to dine either in the Dining Room or at Gonbei. We opted to dine at Gonbei, which specialises in steamboat (also know as hotpot).
I have always enjoyed steamboat, especially when the weather is cool. So Cameron Highlands offered the perfect setting for this dinner – that is probably why the area is known for its steamboat!
The way Gonbei set up their steamboat offering is different to many other places. For starters, there are about 5-6 different types of soups that you can pick from. Most places offer 2-3 at most. We were able to select two different soups, as the main pot was split into two sections.
The selection of vegetables, noodles and condiments were presented in a buffet style, which suited me very much. I am no fussy eater, but I do prefer certain vegetables and noodles over others, so it was nice to be able to choose exactly what I wanted in my steamboat. For the meat selection, there were a few plate options you can choose, depending if you would rather more seafood or meat or a mix.
Overall I enjoyed the steamboat experience at Gonbei. The steamboat here is more expensive than other places around town, but the experience is so much more personalised and the quality is really good.
What a lovely way to experience Cameron Highlands! We enjoyed our time at the Cameron Highlands Resort, and are looking forward to our next visit.
Overall the service we received was very good, and I must give a special shout-out to the lovely Sherry who went above and beyond to make us feel at home.
There are many accommodation options available in the area, but if you want to experience true charm with a touch of heritage, then consider staying at the Cameron Highlands Resort on your next trip here.
Rooms start at RM450 (A$140 | U$104) for a Deluxe King Room, and RM650 (A$200 | U$150) for a Junior Suite.
Best of all, if you do book direct with the hotel, you may get special inclusions such as a steamboat dinner and a 50-minute massage.
For more information about the hotel or to book, click here.
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