After a wonderful 5 weeks in Southern Thailand, including a family vacation, it was time to move on to a new country. This was to be a weekend of milestones. Alan and I were celebrating our 18th wedding anniversary and Lars and Anya were heading to country number 25. Hello Malaysia!
We opted to fly and save ourselves from another 14-hour travel day on a bus. You see, we wanted to be in good spirits as we knew had work to do. We were tasked with reviewing a bit of Family Luxury at The Golden Sands Resort in Penang. It is also the resort’s 35th Anniversary, so celebrations all around.
We drove straight from the airport in our Europcar rental car, named Trudy (Honda City), to the Golden Sand Resort Penang. It was very easy to find and only took about 40 minutes. Just as we came around and down the hill on the north side of the island, into Batu Ferringhi, the hotel was there on our right. We approached the front desk and were then taken to a side office and served juice. I wasn’t sure what was going on, but we received VIP check in. They explained the hotel to us, informed us we had full access to the library, game room and computer center. We quickly checked in and escorted to our rooms.
The Rooms at the Golden Sands Resort Penang
We had connecting rooms on the 7th floor and as we walked in I was immediately drawn to the view out the sliding glass door. From our balcony, the view of the Malacca Straight was stunning. Just below were 2 gorgeous pools and well manicured gardens. The kids were excited that they had their own beds and didn’t have to share, but as soon as they viewed the pools from above, that became priority number one!
The rooms were nearly identical, but our room came with a king bed and the kids had two twin beds. There was also a chair and ottoman, a writing desk and a coffee/tea station. The bathrooms were beautiful and had windows out to the bedroom, to allow natural light in. The shower was my favorite, very good water pressure and a spacious stand up shower with a bench too. Lars and I took full advantage of the tea station as well and enjoyed tea on the balcony.
The beds were the perfect firmness for Alan as he likes a comfy bed. I like soft and luxurious bedding, so the bedding was perfect for me. Most importantly we all had a good sleep during our stay, so it was lovely. The black out curtains worked so well, we all slept in a little bit longer than desired. Our rooms were serviced twice a day, so that was an extra special treat. We love being out to dinner and returning to a clean room with our beds turned down.
The Golden Sand Penang, Amenities & Grounds
The hotel is crescent-shaped, so all of the 387 rooms provide wonderful views. Those on the sea-side can view the beach, parasailers, pools and even watch the glorious sunset. Rooms on the opposite side of the hotel have views of the jungle covered hills, with the town below.
Golden Sands Kids Activities
A Kids Club is available for your 5-12 year-olds, and they have activities throughout the day and into the evening. We took advantage of this on the eve of our anniversary and dropped off the kids about 3:30 pm, so we could enjoy a long walk and dinner out, just the two of us. We returned to pick up the kids about 7:30 pm and they weren’t ready to leave! The had just picked out a movie and were getting into it, in the end they decided to return to the room with us.
We asked about their day and they said they had a good time. They were the only kids in attendance, so the place was theirs to rule! They first baked and each made one dozen chocolate chip cookies. Next they went out on the beach and flew kites. They said they didn’t do so well, but it was good to practice. The also played games and much more. Oh and dinner and a snack were also included. They really had a good time.
Additionally The Golden Sands Resort Penang offers the Adventure Zone, for all ages. This is offered for a fee and is also open to the public for use. We walked over to check it out and it was a huge room full of fun and colorful slides and climbing areas. This was going to be fun for the entire family, notice I said “was”. You see it is required you wear long sleeves and this traveling family just dumped all of our long-sleeved clothes back in Thailand. We understood it was for our safety, as those plastic slides could give a bit of a burn without the proper clothing. We watched for a bit and it looked like a blast.
The other activity we were looking forward to was riding on the Segway. They provide an outdoor nature track for 7 yrs+ to ride the Segway. Unfortunately this was closed temporarily and should be up and running again in June. Not to worry, as we headed over to learn about the resorts participation with the turtle conservation and then off for another dip in the pool.
The Beach and Pools
The pools are wonderful and very clean as well, this is where we liked to spend our time. The main pool was heated and very nice for an evening dip. The family pool was a bit more refreshing and also had a beach-style entry. We all really liked that and had fun in both pools. The kids even had a go at the small pool with a water slide. It was geared more towards smaller children, but that didn’t stop them from having a good time. There were plenty of lounge chairs as well as tables for seating. If you needed any service at all, it was just a quick raise of the flag, and someone was there to help you.
Near the pool was the Sigi’s Bar & Grill, with a ping-pong table and just beyond was the public beach. The golden sand was lovely and there was a walking path all down the beach. The sunsets are absolutely spectacular from here and there are many beach and water activities offered. Almost all of these are offered by outside companies and some of them can be a little pushy trying to get you to choose them over the guy next door. They were all very nice to us, as we said no. To be honest, we didn’t spend much time at the beach. We enjoyed our time on property with so many activities.
Golden Sands Penang Dining
We thoroughly enjoyed the breakfast buffet each morning. I think the family was most excited to find waffles, pancakes, and french toast, complete with maple syrup. I know to many that isn’t a big deal, but that isn’t easy to come by in Asia. It seemed the buffet catered to every type of palate. There was traditional western breakfast items, like bacon, eggs and potatoes and more of a European spread with cheeses and deli meats as well. They had made to order omelets, noodle soups and more. We loved the vast fruit and cereal station as well.
Of course there is the Sigi’s Bar & Grill by the pool and many others at the Shangri-La next door too. We just enjoyed the breakfast on property and then ventured out on the town for our other meals.
Pampering at Chi, The Spa
The Golden Sands Resort is part of the Shangri-La Resorts, and right next door was a sister property, The Shangri-La’s Rasa Sayang Resort and Spa. We were able to experience a couples massage in our own private villa, more on that coming soon. We were most impressed with the grounds, with a golf course, turtle conservation area and the most beautiful shade trees around.
For us the location was ideal. The night market and pretty much anything you need is just out front of the hotel. There are many restaurants and shopping available as well. In the back you have the hotel grounds and the beach area, so there isn’t much walking required. The resort does offer shuttle service into Georgetown as well as some other locations on the island. It is very close to the Penang National Park and for your kids Escape, is something to look forward to as well.
We had a wonderful visit and thank the Golden Sands Resort Penang for hosting our luxury stay. The service throughout the property was amazing and we would love to return again.
Is this your type of family vacation? What do you think you would like most about The Golden Sands Resort Penang and what would you like to know more about?
Golden Sands Resort Penang by Shangi-La Contact Info
- Website: Golden Sands Resort Penang
- Booking Info: Check Rates & Availability for Golden Sands Resort Penang
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Phone: (60 4) 886 1911
- Address:Batu Feringgi Beach, Penang, 11100, Malaysia
- Location on map
If you are looking for more things to do in Penang, check out all of the activities on offer now.
Disclosure: Our hotel stay was hosted by the Golden Sands Resort Penang and all opinions are our own.