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Thursday, 22 March 2012

* Sibu Island Resort, Johor


Exactly where is Sibu Island? Most of my friends think it is somewhere near Sibu, Sarawak in East Malaysia. The Singaporeans probably know this place better as Sibu Island which is located off the east coast of Johor is nearer to their homeland.
Being less popular and less commercialized compared to Tioman Island, it makes an ideal getaway for holidaymakers who want a quiet and serene retreat far away from home.
 
There is not one but 4 Sibu Islands. They are individually named as Sibu Besar, Sibu Tengah, Sibu Kukus and Sibu Hujung. 
Sibu Island Resort is located in Sibu Tengah Island which I circled in red on the map above.
There is no airport in the vicinity and the only way to get there is to drive. If you are coming from KL, use the North-South Expressway and exit at Air Hitam Toll. From this juncture, drive in the direction of Kluang. After passing Kluang, follow the road sign to Mersing but do not end up in Mersing. Instead, look out for the Tanjung Leman signboard.
It was a long journey passing through hundreds of acres of oil palm estates and secondary jungle .
 Access to Sibu Island is via Tanjung Leman Jetty.
After a 5 hour-long drive we finally reached the jetty. There is plenty of parking place at the jetty area. Parking is open-air and the rate is RM8 per night.
There is a KFC outlet at the jetty and a number of parking lots around it. You can either park your vehicle around here or slightly further away.
Sibu Island Resort has a small office at the jetty. A staff is assigned to handle our luggage and ferry transport to the island upon registration. 
This is the ferry that took us to the resort. Sibu Island Resort is the only resort in Sibu Tengah Island. There are ferry services to the other Sibu Islands as well.
It took only 30 min to reach the island. This resort is opened to tourists whole year round unlike resorts in Sibu Besar Island and Tioman Island which are closed for a few months during the Monsoon season.
This is the privately owned resort jetty.
The resort lobby and lounge is about 80-100 meters from the jetty.
Near the lobby entrance, a few staffs were waiting to welcome the guests.
After the welcome drink we were serenaded a welcome song.
This is the reception lobby.
 The lobby and lounge are very spacious. Indoor board games like chess, carom and mahjung are available upon request from the reception counter.
We stayed in Serindit Suite, a unit which is very near to the the resort lobby and restaurant.
The suite is built on stilts and is styled like a Malay village house.
The suite comes with a separate lounge and the setting is quite cozy. The maintenance however, is not tip-top. It rained a few times during our stay here and leakage from the roof caused the lounge floor to get really wet. There is an air-conditioner but no fan in this lounge. 
A mini-bar but is provided and if you are staying here, you may be interested to bring your own snacks/drinks as there are no shops or eateries around other than the resort restaurant.
There are coffee and tea facilities and complimentary sachets of these beverages. Bottled water is also on the house.
The bedroom is separated by a door.
The air-conditioned bedroom does not have a fan but there are 2 large windows making the room airy and bright.
There is a cupboard for your clothes and a safety-box. (Ours was faulty but we did not bother to get it replaced or fixed)
The washroom is very small but cleanliness is satisfactory.
There is very little space to put our toiletries. The bath amenities provided include a tiny bottle of shampoo,a tiny bottle of hair-conditioner, a small piece of soap, towels and nothing much else. You may need to be equipped if you come here.
There is a nice veranda at the entrance to the suite.
Our suite is on a higher ground and commands a fairly good view.
This is the view taken from our bedroom window. The entire resort is built on an undulating ground.
There are other types of accommodation in the resort. Seen here are the Superior Rooms. These units are smaller than the suites.
These are the the Deluxe Rooms which are even smaller.
The resort looks very much like a Malay village.
The honeymoon suites are located on a hill furthest away from the resort lobby.
There are three main beaches. Beach No 3 is located near the Honeymoon Suites.
The resort ground is like a mini zoo. Animals like these deer are seen roaming around freely. They are tame and will even eat from your hands.
There are special-bred fowls.
Peacocks and peahens roam freely too.
You get to see peacocks spreading out their feathers in splendor pretty often here.
The peacocks may give you a surprise visit at your chalet veranda.
Other animals to watch out for are the mountain goats.
The resort boasts of a beautiful swimming pool which is located just next to the restaurant.
There is a pool bar but it wasn't opened for business. There is also a special pool for children.
There is only one restaurant in the resort. You may have to take all your meals here as there are no public restaurants around.
air-condtioned room
Guests are given a choice of sitting in the air-conditioned dining room or open-air veranda for their meals. 
open air veranda
This is our favorite eating spot.
Breakfast cuisines are simple but satisfactory.
There is a fair spread of dinner cuisines. The beef rendang and fish curry are good and overall we are happy with the food.
The desserts have tonnes of sugar in them and is probably enjoyed only by the sweet-toothed guests.
These same girls who sang the welcome songs during our arrival are also the entertainers during dinner time.
A number of recreational facilities are provided.There is a tennis court, a gym, an archery range and elaborate facilities for team building events .
Water sport activities are also available. Equipment are rented out at reasonable price and special excursions (to snorkel or island hop, etc) could be arranged by the resort. (It's something like RM50 per person with a minimum of 4 persons for most of these excursions)
Gazebos and relaxation huts are spread out at intermittent spots around the resort.
The recommended beach for swimming and snorkeling is Beach No 2. There are some corals beyond the boulders (wave breakers) but the water is deep and sometimes choppy there. It is advisable to use the life jackets if you are not a good swimmer. The beach and sea here is much better than the ones we get on the west coast of Malaysia but is stil far from being ideal.
Having spent 3D/2N here how would I best describe Sibu Island Resort? I guess it would be 'Serene, peaceful & refreshing. Can be considered a good vacation resort'. 

9 comments :

  1. Hi, Lily. That's a very good write-up. Thank you for giving an overview on what to expect. I plan to go to this resort with my friends soon.

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    1. Glad my posting is helpful to you. Have a nice vacation.

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  2. thanks for this, we are going next week, much appreciated

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  3. Do have a great vacation Ivan.

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  4. Thank you so much for letting us know this one. I'm glad to see your vacation resort. Very attractive views I like it. I will visit your resort soon. Anyway if you want to have an listing of Best Vacation Resorts just Click here.

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    Replies
    1. Hi Dianne, there are many interesting places in Malaysia. Do go through all my posts and you'll see what i mean.

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  5. THANX FOR THE TIP LILy,YOU SHUD WRITE FOR TRIPADVISOR.:o)

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  6. Hi there :)
    I'm planning to go there in Nov with my hubby..
    Can I know roughly how much you spent?
    Like for food, accommodation, ferry? etc.
    Thank you so much for posting :D

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    Replies
    1. About RM1000 for the accomodation & all meals package. Ferry? Oh can't remember. It was value for money I know.

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