I have always wanted to give glamping a try. It is the closest I could get to camping considering I am not an adventurous person and camping isn’t something I am particularly interested in. Having a good private shower is something I could not compromise. With that in mind, with a lot of photos of beautiful girls adorned in summer dresses taken at Tiarasa Escapes, I was mildly curious about the place.
When my girlfriend decided to get married in Janda Baik, I could not think of any other place to stay other than Tiarasa Escapes. It was a perfect excuse to finally stay a few nights at this notorious place that a lot tend to complain about on social media. Shrugging off all the bad reviews ever written, I had booked two nights for the Hornbill tent with not even a pang of expectation. I did not want to be disappointed.
After a short winding road, we had found ourselves on a smaller road that was big enough for one vehicle and thought of how it only takes one mistake to end up in a ditch or on someone’s roof. After about an hour and a half driving from KL, we found ourselves pulling up in front of the hotel’s ground and I just thought it was a stunning sight. The greens, the tents – made me want to dress up in a gown and scream, I mean, sing, like I am one of those protagonists from The Sound of Music.
Even so, the view itself could not distract me from the fact that no one greeted us upon arriving. We had to awkwardly wait at the entrance of the tent while their staffs were busy attending other guests. Not even a hello. Not a smile. Not even a welcome. Perhaps, I was already used to the top-notch Emirati hospitality few weeks back and even though I was not expecting anything, I did however, subconsciously expected something regardless because of the price they are charging per night. Check-in was brief. The receptionist had shown us the activities they had to keep us busy throughout the course of stay – outdoor cinema, BBQ, atv rides, badminton etc etc. We then were ushered to the buggy to get our luggage from our car and had a little tour of the ground before we could check into our tent.
The tent itself was beautifully decorated, very bohemian. I loved that it was spacious and the bed was comfortable. The bathroom, however, could be better. The shower was a bit awkward and for some reason, I thought, I could flood the tent a little if I had showered longer. I do notice the lack of some basic amenities. A simple closet, bathrobes, a small coffee table perhaps? Never would I have imagined that I would be looking for a coffee table in a hotel room. You do not appreciate something until it is gone. Booking the room, it comes with breakfast package that we could not choose. On the first day, we were served cold mediocre nasi lemak and some fruits and a very flimsy flask. Second day, mediocre pastries and fruits and sausages and such. I could barely even eat anything but I am just glad that breakfast isn’t really my thing so I made no fuss.
Oddly, ironically, and thankfully, the in-house restaurant served great food and was reasonably priced. I loved their cute little cekodoks. I was just grateful that I did not have to starve because there was no way I would drive around Janda Baik looking for a place to eat for dinner given the circumstances. In the evening and at night, the cool breeze was just incredibly soothing. They even had outdoor cinema (usually something Disney or cartooney) but it was nice to just be out there, under the bed of stars, breathing in clean fresh air. It is always nice to escape from reality every once in a while.
Overall, Tiarasa Escapes is a stunning place. Definitely not worth the price ( I do think they have a lot more room for improvements) but it is a lovely experience nonetheless. It is very kid-friendly, with the kiddy pool and the kiddy activities and the cinema for kiddies. It is no surprise that the place is always booked because it is a great place to bond with your kiddies and your loved ones.