Singaporebrides | Editors' Notes

January 2018

Indulge and Pamper Yourself at The St Regis Langkawi

Looking for a wedding or honeymoon destination where you can leave your stresses behind and just give yourself up to luxurious pampering? The two year-old St Regis Langkawi might just be the one.

The main island of Langkawi is not only known for its mysterious forests and untouched geological formations. There have been many suggestions for the origin of the name “Langkawi”. According to one interpretation, Langkawi means “the island of the red-backed sea eagle”, referring to the Brahminy Kite species in colloquial Malay. The Malay word for eagle is helang, while kawi is the name of a red stone used as a chalk. This interpretation was used to create the landmark sculpture of an eagle as the symbol of Langkawi at Dataran Helang (Eagle Square) in Kuah.

Driving south from Datai Bay in the north-western part of Langkawi, it took us about 45 minutes to reach The St Regis Langkawi. What greeted me just as the Bentley turned into the driveway, was a statue of a golden eagle nestled into the side of a tightly forested hill. As you reach the entrance to the main lobby, you get the feeling that you are now approaching the habitat of the eagles, with landscaping inspired by the Hanging Gardens of Babylon.

st regis langkawiThe very mystical entrance to the driveway at St Regis Langkawi Image of the misty garden outside the lobby entrance, courtesy of The St Regis Langkawi

Once inside, you’ll get a huge surprise. It doesn’t look anything like what it does on the outside! It feels exactly as you know a St Regis property would feel like; grand yet welcoming, sophisticated yet teeming with old-world charm.

The St Regis Langkawi is situated within a quiet and peaceful cove, with 85 well-appointed suites and 4 water villas, each boasting a spectacular view of the Straits of Malacca, and only about 20 minutes away from the Langkawi International Airport. However, the hotel was designed to resemble an affluent Moroccan beach town, with massive buildings, Islam-inspired geometric designs and floral motifs, Moorish arches and garden landscaping, and French-regulated flat roofs. You will definitely forget you are in Malaysia while you’re here.

The Room

I was shown to the luxurious St Regis Pool Suite with an elegantly furnished living area. What I loved about the suite was the expansive outdoor terrace that leads to a private plunge pool that is surrounded by a verdant landscaped garden. This has got to be one of the most inviting terraces I’ve seen in a resort, and I was almost tempted into staying in and lounging with a book on the day bed under the striking blue and white canopy. The adorable wooden gate with the spiral wrought-iron details leads to the beach. I love that it made me feel like I own a tiny villa in Chefchaouen, which is Morocco’s famed Blue City. My only issue with the terrace is that guests staying in the rooms above me can look down and have an eagle’s eye view, so honeymooners might want to keep the PDA within the room.

st regis langkawiThe very inviting king bed in my St Regis Pool Suite Beach amenities in the room View from the bed The day bed at the terrace The blue wooden door leading out to the beach Image of ornate pavilions dotted around the property, courtesy of St Regis Langkawi A quiet beach that is not so good for swimming in, but great for reading on

The Service

A wonderful part of the St Regis experience has got to be their traditionally trained butlers. Even before my arrival in Langkawi, I received an email from my personal butler who asked if I required any special requests for my room. When she showed me my suite, she asked if I had any preferences for fruits and nuts so that she could change whatever was already on the table. You can even get your butler to prepare a special bath for you. Then before she left, she asked if she could help me unpack, which I rejected, but I did ask for free pressing service. This is one perk I really appreciate, and I’m glad more hotels are providing this complimentary now.

The butler made sure to replenish these whenever I left the room A new item in the room for tea every day

I had a direct line to her on the phone in my room and I was to call her whenever I needed to be chaperoned to anywhere in the hotel. Because of the way the hotel was designed, it could be a bit confusing to get from your room to the main building where all the facilities are, but I’m a little adventurer. I made my way to my spa treatment alone, and I caught her running after me! Her presence was much appreciated because I had just noticed that my camera battery had run low, and she was able to deliver it to the spa while I started on my treatment.

The Spa

The St Regis Langkawi gave me my first half-day spa experience, and—i’m not gonna lie—it’s not for everyone. But, if you love being pampered at a spa like I do, and have set aside time to do nothing and leave your body in the good, firm hands of the spa therapist, then Iridium Spa’s Serenity Half Day Spa is one experience you cannot miss.

A very calming ambience inside the treatment room at Iridium Spa The round tub that can fit four

Stepping inside the spa from the brightly lit lobby, you’ll be instantly soothed by the charcoal grey marble, dark wood, sounds of running water and dim lighting. The top to toe treatment starts with the spa’s classic bespoke massage, followed by a bespoke body ritual according to your needs. Because it is a half-day treatment, a part of the package includes a soak in the bath while you enjoy afternoon tea and champagne. The decadence! I would recommend this treatment for couples, because there really was too much space in that big round tub. I should have brought my book!

Afternoon tea and champagne while soaking in the rose petal filled tub

After I’ve filled my stomach, I went back to the massage table for a truly luxurious facial treatment using products by Babor, the famous European skincare brand. The treatment ends with a full pedicure. I was lucky to have my treatment done by an adorable therapist, and because we spent so much time together, we couldn’t stop chatting, and the treatment went on for an hour longer than it should!

The Restaurants

The St. Regis Langkawi offers a variety of exquisite dining settings, with each restaurant keeping up with the rich heritage and legacy of the St. Regis brand in thoughtfully composed menus that infuse freshly imported ingredients with local spices.

Steak and eggs. For breakfast. Über decadent Lobster Omelette These yummy little cekodok pisang Just in case you missed out on these at the buffet counter Lobster Nasi Lemak

Breakfast at L’Orangerie is a decadent affair, but presented in a subdued manner. Aside from an extensive buffet, guests can also order from an à la carte menu that includes dishes such as lobster omelettes and croissant French toast with cinnamon butter. In the middle of breakfast, the wait staff will come around to your table with silver salvers and bamboo trays of piping hot samplings straight from the kitchen, just in case you had mistakenly left one item out from the buffet spread. I’ve never had a breakfast experience like this one, and I still think of that lobster omelette fondly. Also, the cekodok pisang (fried banana balls) was very addictive.

kayu putiThe over-water Kayu Puti restaurant The entrance to Kayu Puti Details of the Kayu Puti furnishing Plush furniture inside Kayu Puti Artfully plated dishes

The hotel’s over-water restaurant and bar, Kayu Puti, is a destination itself. It even has its own website. Perched over the lagoon, the restaurant offers a captivating view of the Andaman Sea as the sun sets, so it will be wise to head there for pre-dinner drinks. Reflecting the myths and legends of Langkawi island, the gorgeous restaurant looks like the home of an undersea explorer. Designed by my favourite architect, Bill Bensley, the interiors of the restaurant are whimsical and plush, and each piece of furniture tells a story, heightening the whole dining experience. Helmed by highly acclaimed Executive Chef Gaetan Biesuz, this specialty restaurant is celebrated for its menu of Asian-influenced haute cuisine and reinterpretations of regional recipes, enhanced by artful plating.

Entrance to The St Regis Bar Bar seats A huge variety of whiskey The wine cellar at Decanter Gorgeous interior inside the bar

I didn’t have time to sit down for a drink at The St Regis Bar, but I did go in for a look because I was seduced by its masculine exterior. It is a gorgeous bar. In tribute to the original Bloody Mary cocktail of The St. Regis New York, the bar serves Lang Mary – the local equivalent with a touch of tamarind. Within the bar, there is also The Decanter Wine Bar, which is bedecked with over a thousand New and Old World labels and vintage champagnes in its floor-to-ceiling modern cellar. Perhaps the hubby can head there while you have your half-day spa treatment? I can imagine The Great Gatsby-scale bachelor parties held in here with the decor reminiscent of New York bar set in the 1920s.

The Weddings

I thought Kayu Puti would be the perfect wedding venue at St Regis Langkawi so I requested for images to have a look. I have to share them with you here.

Image of a wedding set up at the beach, courtesy of The St Regis Langkawi Image of a table set up in Kayu Puti, courtesy of The St Regis Langkawi Image of a wedding dessert table set up in Kayu Puti, courtesy of The St Regis Langkawi

The vibe at the postcard-perfect St Regis Langkawi is tropical sophistication set in a private, idyllic cove, even though the bustling Kuah town is less than 20 minutes away. At breakfast, I saw a good mix of honeymooners, friends celebrating birthdays, and young families. After breakfast, you hardly see and hear them at all, except during the evening Champagne Sabering Ritual. If hiking up waterfalls and duty-free shopping is not your cup of tea, you will enjoy luxuriating within the palatial St Regis Langkawi and on its secluded beach. Very often, you’ll get a sighting of a Brahminy Kite or an up-close encounter with Great Hornbills. You are, after all, surrounded by UNESCO-listed geoparks. One thing is for sure—you will have a hard time leaving this place.

A pair of Hornbills outside a suite room

Getting there:

I took a direct flight to Langkawi, which takes approximately 1 and a half hours. It is then a 20-minute drive to The St Regis Langkawi.

Rates:

Room rates start from MYR 2538 for a St Regis Suite per night to MYR 11, 325 for a Three-Bedroom Villa per night, including taxes.

The St Regis’ wedding packages start from only MYR 19,000 nett per package and it includes a host of benefits ranging from bridal decorations and specially decorated floral arch, to hair and make-up, 2 kg wedding cake, St Regis Butler service, as well as two complimentary night’s stay in the St Regis Pool Suite for the wedding couple.

For more information or to book a wedding package, please visit www.thestregislangkawi.com or email them at events.langkawi@stregis.com.

Photo credits: All images copyright of SingaporeBrides.com unless otherwise stated.

Read about The Andaman, a Luxury Collection Resort and The Westin Langkawi Resort & Spa.