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Reviewed 27 August 2018

A friend recommended this retreat a while back so when the opportunity come up for going to Malaysia I wanted to check this place out. With the hefty price tag it took me a long time to finally make the booking because one never know if the retreat is as good as the reviews and if it is worth the money one is paying. I end up booking 2 x Garden Villas.
We traveled by car and at entrance guard let us in without an issue when we said we checking in. As the car pull into the retreat entrance, we were then greeting by a staff and traditional music started playing to welcome us. The staff offloaded our luggage and asked us to hit the gong in the front to mark our arrival.
Headed to the reception desk to check in, was asked to produce ID for all the guests who are staying and I decided to ask for a 3rd room for my 2 friends who are locals but were acting as our guide and chauffeur while we in town. They had one Lake Villa available for one night only, while the rest of us were staying two nights.
The whole check in process did take a long time but as we produce our IDs we were seated in the lobby area and served a drink and a small snack and a face towel to clean. A member of staff then came to where we were sitting to go through the details and payment. Up to this point, all the staff showed us they are friendly, although the whole check in process did take some time. We were then taken on a buggy to our villas while they gave us a tour of the retreat on the way.
The retreat is a gem, the beauty of the mountains as a backdrop, the hot springs pool with an unbeatable sight, the little fish pond to eat away your dead skin on your feet if it is your cuppa tea, the caves, the spa etc etc, By now comparing to the cheap hot spring we stayed at on our way to Ipoh there is no comparison, while the other place feel a little dirty, here the water is clean and the villas are clean the private pool inside the villa also clean, we were all beaming with satisfaction.
The luggage took a while to get to us while we waiting, we wanted to leave the villa to explore but because we took the 3rd room at time of arrival, it took quite a while before our friends room were ready.
That evening some of us dined at their cave restaurant, Jeff's Cellar. We had booked this weeks in advance, think it is advance booking only with a set menu of MYR 500 or MYR750 depending on your choice of menu. I read some reviews of the food but I wanted to maximize our experience here and decided to try. The food is fine, not as bad as some of the reviews out there. I do agree the price tag is high for what we eating but the price tag is for the service and the exclusive setting, with that in mind it was worth it, if not for the food it is for the experience as a whole. There is no service charge on top of the bill and they did not request a tip, I did ask one of the waiters that I did not leave a tip and if I wanted to can I add it to my room tab and his reply was, it is entirely up to you maam, whatever you wish with a smile. First time where meal do not ask for a service charge or tip and yet they do not give u horrible faces, I was impressed and left them a tip when I check out of the retreat. One small thing though, I am not sure if it is because it is a cave afterall, some of us did encounter headaches while dining, and I notice the couple behind me, one lady diner was also constantly trying to massage her head and temple, I suspect she has a headache too like us lol
Do expect mosquitoes, I notice they do spray in the shrubs outside our villas in the morning and they do leave us repellents in our villas. One thing I wasn't expecting was monkeys, the naughty monkeys do visit the villa to get the fruits that they staff had leave for us in the morning. I was told by my friends during breakfast the director Raymond did come over and talked briefly to guests to welcome us, which I missed during my little girl break to the ladies room. A note on the breakfast, if you are hungry you can order two sets or how many sets you can eat from the menu, wont have to go hungry with just the one and no extra costs lol
On a bad note the next night we decided to stay in the retreat to enjoy what is on offer, we ordered Dine in the Villa (room service) prior to our spa treatment. I ordered a Virgin Colorda, and half way through drinking it I suspect a small amount of alcohol in it but was not sure, it was so faint so I asked my partner to try for me and he said no it didn't seem to taste alcoholic. I downed the rest of the drink to go get ready for the spa is when I notice my heart was racing and face was red. Wasn't too happy and called the restaurant to find out and they did get the order wrong and gave me a Pina Colorda. I really did not want to drink alcohol pre-treatment I did want them to know they made a mistake so it wont be repeated to someone else. But I didnt want to get any staff in trouble, everyone make mistakes, luckily I dont have an allergy to it or cannot drink it for religious reasons, so I just informed them and not pursue further.
I called the restaurant to pick up the items outside, I meant outside the room inside the villa on the table but no one came so next morning, the monkeys had been and made a right mess, looked like they had fun except they didnt seem to like the mustard sauce much.
The spa treatment was nice and they open till 10pm so we took the latest appointment pre-booked at the time of checking into the retreat. The girls were very polite and friendly and the massage was nice we feel asleep taking turn to snore during treatment.
We did visit The Lost World of Tambun next door, it was free for the retreat guests through and special entry from within the retreat through a jungle walk lead by the hotel staff at 11am or 2pm daily. The small zoo was okay and enjoyable, there are water rides there that we did not participate. You can buy feeds from a stand there to feed the amimals and one of the parrot did bit by finger though quite hard but not hard enough to make me bleed so I did not need treatment but it did hurt for the next two days a bit.
I would recommend this place anytime. Love the place, love the facilities, love the villas, love the service. Only thing don't love is the price tag but you get what you pay for.
A little mention about the different villas, the Lake Villa my friends got for one night, this one is only slightly cheaper at 1500 MYR it dosent have a courtyard but it still has nice interior and enough space and a small balcony with a view to the Lake. It has a very very small swimming pool if you can call it that and a hot tub of hot spring water but not a jucuzzi.
Our garden Villa is 1800 MYR I think is the same price as the Water Villa. Not sure what the Water Villa look like inside but our Garden Villa look exactly like the photos online, courtyard has fans, sitting area and a decent size swimming pool, while inside bathroom and bathroom has air conditioning, and a small outdoor hot spring hot tub from the shower room which has jets. For the 300MYR a night difference it is better to take the Garden or Water Villa I think. Garden and Water Villa can host a 3rd person at a surcharge but Lake Villa only allow max 2 persons. Children below 12 are not allowed to stay at the retreat.

Room tip: Pick the bigger villa, the bigger one is only 300MYR more than the smaller one, by comparison you get a lot more space.
Date of stay: August 2018
  • Trip type: Travelled with friends
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank IYPT
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
raymondkfm, Director of Operations at The Banjaran Hotsprings Retreat, responded to this reviewResponded 2 September 2018

Dear IYPT,

Thank you for sharing your detailed review with us.

We are glad that you had a great stay . Apologies as didn't manage to meet you but did say hello to your friends. We are sorry on the mixed up of your beverage which were unintentional error.

We will be looking forward to welcome you and your friends back to our Retreat in the near future.

Best Regards,

Raymond Koh
Director of Operations

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 August 2018 via mobile

Our stay in The Banjaran Hotsprings In Ipoh during my wife’s birthday weekend is just superb. The place, amenities and staff are all great. Really worth every penny you will spend during the stay. Trully worth an experience and will definitely go back!

Date of stay: August 2018
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
Thank dkbsilva
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
raymondkfm, Director of Operations at The Banjaran Hotsprings Retreat, responded to this reviewResponded 22 August 2018

Dear Dan S,

Thank you for staying with us and leaving us your review.

It was our pleasure to serve you.

We look forward for your return soon.

Best Regards,

Raymond Koh
Director of Operations

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 August 2018 via mobile

We are frequent travellers and have stayed in several high end resorts in Europe and Asia. This is a spectacular resort set amidst limestone caves. We stayed in the garden villa and it turned out to be a good option as there was more privacy and space.
We had good cool weather during our stay and the geothermal pool in the room was a highlight.
The various caves were interesting and provided different experiences.
Dining in Jeff's cellar was an especially good experience. Food was of a high standard. Pastries perhaps not their specialty but everything else very good.
The 'treasure hunt' for the hidden fridge in the outdoors where ice cream and drinks were hidden added a nice fun touch.
Friendly service staff, some of them had been there since the place opened up.
Highly recommended for a romantic getaway.

Date of stay: August 2018
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
Thank VickiP1245
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
raymondkfm, Director of Operations at The Banjaran Hotsprings Retreat, responded to this reviewResponded 22 August 2018

Dear Vicki P,

Thank you for your visit and leaving us your review.

We are glad that you had enjoyed your stay.

We look forward for your return soon.

Best Regards,

Raymond Koh
Director of Operations

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 August 2018 via mobile

Surrounded by lime stone hills and jungle, a gem lies hidden in the midst of green and voices of nature. Natural hot spring water flows lazily in the resort and into the hot tub of the villas there. Yes, this is a paradise in a city!

Located 2 hour drive from Kuala Lumpur, we were welcome by the security guards and the team. We have to strike a gong before proceeding to the reception Hall while 2 local traditional artists played some tunes with traditional instruments to welcome our arrival.

Check in process was not very quick but we were led to a library where we can enjoy our coffee and read some books while waiting for our villa. To be fair we arrived 1 hour ahead of schedule.

In a buggy, we were given a tour and orientation about the resort before we checked into our villa. The villa was big, perfectly clean and perfectly comfortable. With Seperate shower room and toilet, the bath room had another fantastic surprise. The hot tub has constant flow of hot spring water! If you feel too warm soaking in the warm water, you can always jump into the cold plunge pool, all within the bath room!

The king size bed is huge and comfy. Love the pillows and comforter. By the way, since they knew it was our anniversary, the team made some nice decorations on the the bed to welcome us. Nice!

There were many activities that one can join, such as yoga, short hike, water theme park, swimming in the hot spring water pool or natural lake, meditation etc. So a minimum of 2 nights stay are recommended. However the spa was quite expensive, but it's to be expected in this resort. There was a complimentary cocktail hour which takes place beside the hot spring water lake, where guests can mingle around with free flow of wine, juices, and finger food.

Unfortunately during our stay, I fell sick. The team were actually very helpful, and sincere. The director of operation visited me and asked me if I needed anything, another lady manager, Ms Theng (if I remember correctly) did her best to get me something to ease my discomfort. We were impressed with such service. The entire team, in fact, deserved a big applause as they were all friendly, helpful and polite!

I would definitely come back and this time I'll stay longer!

HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!

Date of stay: August 2018
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
2  Thank Radiikal
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
raymondkfm, Director of Operations at The Banjaran Hotsprings Retreat, responded to this reviewResponded 18 August 2018

Dear Radiikal,

Thank you for celebrating your anniversary with us and sharing your detailed experience in our Tripadvisor page.

We are glad that you had a great stay and hope you had fully recovered.

We will be looking forward to welcome you back to our Retreat soon.

Best Regards,

Raymond Koh
Director of Operations

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 August 2018

Customer Service- was excellent. We had to push back our reservation due to my husband falling seriously ill, the management who dealt with the issue were understanding and accommodating. As we walk through the property, each staff member who met us greeted us warmly. You can see that they are not forced to greet but rather genuinely greet you.
However, at the swimming pool, the buzzers to call the waiter wasn't working. After having informed their restaurant staff, periodically, they came to check on us.

Venue: As a nature lover and rock climber, i have spent time in nature a lot. There is great effort in trying to make the place look natural. However, to my trained eyes- it wasn't pure (if I could put it this way). The fallen tree near the hot spring waterfall to my dismay was fake, the crystal cave was disappointing however the mediation cave was preserved most of its natural setting which was beautiful.

The Jeff's cellar- while its impressive to have restaurant within rocks, there was a lot of work done which I appreciate but did not like the fake coverings over the real rocks.

Prices- naturally is expensive. A few of the dishes we had was quite good, however sitting in in Ipoh, the town was a short drive away for good food that is quite cheap.

Overall- the ambiance is great! The room fantastic! Its quite an experience and my comments are reflective of my personal preference.

I do take away the lasting impression of their staff- this is something the hotel should hold on to.

Date of stay: July 2018
  • Trip type: Travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Service
Thank CMatviienko
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
raymondkfm, Director of Operations at The Banjaran Hotsprings Retreat, responded to this reviewResponded 16 August 2018

Dear CMatviienko,

Thank you for staying with us and sharing your experience.

We are glad that you had a great overall stay and we appreciate your feed back.

We will be looking forward to welcome you back to our Retreat.

Best Regards,

Raymond Koh
Director of Operations

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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