Our Stay at Shangri-La’s Rasa Ria Resort and Spa, Kota Kinabalu

With the overwhelming experience at Mount Kinabalu over, we took our luggage which was longing for us from the storage room and got into a small shuttle which sent us to Tuaron, the town where our hotel was located. Our hotel was Shangri-La, a well-known hotel chain around the world. It was near a golf course, which was called Dalit Bay.

After passing through the security gates which lead into the resort, we arrived at the reception, which was a vast lobby with a small café at the corner. We checked-in at around 5pm, tired from head to toe. However, we pushed on to make it for the rest of the day. The resort has 4 restaurants. Despite that, only one was open that day. The restaurant is called Tepi Laut and it served different kinds of Asian food. It is a hawker-styled eatery where you get the food by going to the different kaleidoscope of food stalls. In some of the stalls, you choose raw ingredients and pass them to the chef who will cook them for you on the spot!

The food was sumptuous, as we also ordered two drinks, which were orange juice and hot chocolate. The food I got for myself was chicken rice, fried chicken and some stir-fried veggies. For dessert, I had 2 slices of cake and a scoop of chocolate ice-cream. After our unique dinner, we went back to our room and ended the day.

During our meal, we were also entertained by an extravagant performance by a group of daring hotel members who put up a really good cultural show and entertained us! I volunteered to assist them in their performance, which was really cool! The experience was really exciting as I got to shoot with an ancient blow bow and did a stick dance. It really kept my adrenaline pumping!

 

We woke up quite late for breakfast the next day as we were still very tired from the two days of hiking. We quickly changed and got to the breakfast hall, which was downstairs, and began having breakfast. Their dining area was very spacious, and there were a lot of food choices, just like the restaurant, Tepi Laut. There were many typical breakfast foods such as French toast, loaves of different breads and a variety of eggs…

As I said, we woke up considerably late. Thus, our breakfast was quite rushed to finish in the nick of time. Anyways, after our quick meal, I decided to go to the hotel’s archery range to try archery as that is an activity that does not require the use of one’s feet as mine’s were still aching!

I had three rounds. One of them was complimentary, while the other two were paid. So in total we paid a reasonable 88 ringgit which came from my 100 ringgit budget. You might be wondering what the budget was about. Well, as we are loyal Golden Circle members of Shangri-La, we are given a free 100 ringgit voucher each day which we could spend on numerous activities!

After the meaningful aiming session, we went to the coast and tried out the hotel’s kayaks, which were in sleek condition as we explored the tranquil seas. During the hour of exploration, we chanced upon a group of people who had just caught a shoal of gargantuan fishes. The scene was interesting as we examined the types of fish they caught from afar. With an hour almost gone, we headed back to the watersport center and returned the boats to the managers on duty.

We then went for lunch. With our legs still aching, we had a slow but worthwhile walk to the resort’s Italian Restaurant. We had a quick glance at their Italian Menu and made our delicious choices and ate them with no regrets!

With lunch over we had a long nap until late afternoon, when we decided to swim at the hotel’s pool for the rest of the day. We had dinner at Tepi Laut…again! But still certainly had a great meal!

Anyways, Thursday we had a similar schedule, but actually also went to Dalit Bay to try out the hotel’s driving range. We were given 100 golf balls, which was quite a plenty, as we struck it out at the range, where the balls would land in water! Yes, as the balls had the ability to float on water, the Golf Staff would collect the balls after opening hours! Thus the name of this venue is Aquatic Range!

My dad and I took turns to hit the balls away into the lake as we did many far shots, with some even near the hole! With our shooting practice completed, we left the majestic golf course to have dinner at the usual place…

The next day was our last whole day in the resort. So, I decided to have a visit to their nature reserve, which was nearby the hotel. It was called Rasa Ria Nature Reserve. I was there to act as a Ranger by feeding the different wildlife that dwell there. Along the way, we explored the flora and fauna of this interesting place and took the different and short pathways which led to adventure!

 

We fed the chickens, squirrel, monkeys and fishes with the friendly trainers, which was lots of fun! With that done, I joined the kids club, where I got to make my own Olympic Badge logo and Swim! When I returned to my room, I realised there was a celebration going on as the hotel staff were singing happy birthday! They also gave a birthday cake to us for a treat!

Night time, it was time for the greatest feature during our luxurious stay in Shangri-La. In case you were wondering, we chose this majestic hotel for one big reason. It was a very special occasion for us: it was my dad’s birthday. The whole day, we were waiting for an anticipated dinner at the Italian Restaurant. However, due to the fact that the seafood restaurant would open instead of Tepi Laut, we changed our mind on where to eat and it was truly worth it. That was also the first time where I ate a fish still intact and freshly cooked! And it was like a minefield. My parents ate similar dishes to what I had chosen. For dessert, we finished it off with a surprise birthday song from the staff and a big complimentary birthday cake which was another sumptuous masterpiece. That was my dad’s second birthday cake! With the birthday memories taken we went home for a good night sleep!

With the last day upon me, I just swam since breakfast all the way to lunch on the last day, which was sad…