Felt I had to update my review for the empire as the first (12 months ago) wasn't so good. We stayed during new year for x2 nights using their select voucher system. Worth the initial outlay for some good deals for a period of 12 months. The hotel was busy but this year there was an obvious increase in staff presence (probably the entire team) whereas last Xmas it was minimal. Check in takes too long I'm afraid ( not sure why because having pre booked this shouldn't take the time it does?!) therefore the queues are extended during a busy period. Noticed at 2pm that all the tables in the lobby area had been pre booked for afternoon tea so if you intend to enjoy this during a celebration time of year, make sure you make a prior reservation. Zest is the new cafe area with seating outside so thankfully there is an alternative for coffee, cakes and snacks. This also now sells the speciality chocolates which is a vast improvement to the old system. We stayed in the "superior rooms" which are actually the cheapest and appear to be the newest wings of accommodation. After previously staying in various sections of the hotel, we believe that there is very little difference and it's not worth spending the extra unless you prefer the "e club" facilities. All rooms have vast bathrooms, huge bath tubs and individual showers etc. If,however, you like a quieter room I'd suggest asking for one which doesn't overlook the pool. We also experienced noisy fellow guests on various landings of the accomodation block, who thought everyone else should hear their children playing in the corridors ( should I say screeching and screaming!) Noticed that the mini bar fridge was empty but apparently there is a new practice regarding this now. The more expensive rooms and e club rooms have complimentary drinks and fridge contents but you can pay 10 brunei dollars if you wish to have it filled on arrival, in the cheaper rooms. Therefore take your own drinks etc to store in the room fridges (cheaper option anyway) possibly the hotel need to place a notice in the rooms to explain this or inform at check in. There is currently improvements to some if the swimming pools but the larger pool is open. During our stay this work had obviously been suspended due to the large number of guests but not sure if it would cause excessive noise when recommenced. There are also further plans to improve some of the deluxe rooms decor and furnishings in 2012. We had pre booked the 6 course new years eve meal at "Spaghettini" restaurant which was very good. Service was excellent and we enjoyed the entertainment (singing trio) which was far superior to that of the group in the atrium! There wasn't any firework display this year which was disappointing but a balloon drop
at midnight so we decided not to wait around for this. Buffet breakfasts are adequate and much improved seating arrangements on two floors (because of hotel occupancy being high) with plenty of choice and items replenished quickly. In all it felt like there had been improvement in staff training to improve the sometimes previous negative vibes from staff. There were noticeably more smiley happy employees and many more greetings which is always a good thing. Hopefully this will continue and the management team should be aware that there efforts to improve customer service has been noticed. Just a slight negative comment is that the Chinese restaurant Li Gong continues not to offer their a la carte menu every evening which for anyone who prefers non buffet choice this is disappointing (not available on Sunday's) we did dine on a Monday evening but we were still initially only given the "all you can eat buffet " menu by the lead waiter?! We had to ask for the a la carte menu. Its obvious therefore that the buffet is the easiest option for the chef! However, after a bad experience previously, we would rather dine somewhere else. Looking forward to seeing the improvements which have been scheduled for 2012 and hope customer service will continue to improve and be consistent.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Located on the north eastern tip of Borneo on the doorstep of one of Asia's oldest rainforests, The Empire Hotel & Country Club is Brunei’s most prestigious beach resort offering unsurpassed 5-star luxury.This palatial resort hotel, which astounds visitors with its spectacular 12 storey marble and gold lobby, is set in its own private 180-hectare (445 acres) estate of manicured gardens and an 18-hole, floodlit Jack Nicklaus Signature Golf Course and Country Club. Each of the hotel’s 522 opulently appointed guest rooms, suites and private villas has a view of the ocean, lagoon, gardens or golf course, while standard throughout the hotel are Imperial king-sized beds made with the finest linens, and over-sized marble bathrooms with walk-in shower, deep soaking tub with gold taps and luxury amenities. The Empire Hotel & Country Club also extends the kingdom’s regal hospitality with an impressive range of international restaurants, spa, world-class golf and sporting activities, and international meeting facilities for top level MICE gatherings, making it a resort ideal for family, romantic or business vacations. The Empire Hotel & Country Club is a member of WORLDHOTELS and recipient of numerous prestigious international awards. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- The Empire Hotel And Country Club
- Empire Hotel Brunei