A Luxurious stay in the Royal Villa at the Philea Resort in Malacca
Whenever we hear the phrase Eco-Resort, the word Luxurious is not one that immediately comes to mind. Most peoples image of an Eco-Resort would probably be one of simplicity, a place with lots of wood and other reclaimed natural resources, not somewhere for the discerning looking for luxury.
When we accepted the kind invitation from the Philea Resort in Malacca to sample the ‘Philea’ brand of luxury, it must be said that we were a little unsure how it would tie-in with Luxurious Magazine. How would an Eco-Resort match up to the other non-Eco luxury destinations we had visited over the past couple of years? Having said that, we had not previously featured an Eco-Resort, we had nothing to base any opinion on and with the Global Focus being on sustainability and recycling, what better place to choose as our first Eco-Friendly destination.
Location of the Philea Resort
The Philea Resort is located in the historic state of Malacca in the Southern Region of the Malay Peninsular. To the South is Singapore and approximately 150 km North is the Malaysian Capital of Kuala Lumpur. Malacca is a major tourist destination famous for its varied history and has been listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2008. The Resort itself is located approximately 20 minutes drive from Malacca Town Centre in an area called Ayer Keroh, getting here is very straightforward as the Philea Resort is clearly signposted from the main North-South Highway.
We preferred to drive to the Philea Resort in Malacca, a journey that proved surprising quick and uneventful, as mentioned the Philea Resort is clearly signposted off the main highway and after what seemed to be less than a minute we were driving into the resort. The first thing you’ll notice is the huge Lobby building, a magnificent structure of wooden logs that extends to at least 40 feet in height, later conversations revealed to us that the lobby and the majority of the other buildings were built using Siberian Pine shipped from Russia. Even the chairs we sat upon in the lobby were beautifully constructed from highly polished wood reclaimed from a sunken ship. For our luxurious stay, we would be staying in one of the two Royal Villas, accommodation that had previously been used by for the former and current Prime Ministers of Malaysia well as an international Bollywood film star and various Captains of industry. The Philea Resort is located in a stunning natural hollow and has taken 2 years hard work and an investment in excess of 120 million ringgit to ensure that it achieved its vision. In a country blessed with a large number of luxury resorts a unique style and look is a great differentiator and in this respect the Philea Resort in Malacca scores highly.
After a friendly greeting from Mr Choong the Resort Manager and Connie Chin, Director of Marketing, a refreshing drink and cold towel, it was a ride on one of the stretched electric buggies to be taken to the Royal Villa.
As we were driven through the resort the visual impact from the use of the Siberian Pine logs was truly impressive with detached two storey log buildings each housing four of the Pavilion Rooms and some very pretty detached Pine Log bungalows called the Philea Suites. Dividing the properties and extending to what must be over 60 meters is the wonderful swimming pool and its adjacent decorative pools. The pool is bordered on two sides by a cascading waterfall that drops down into the decorative pools, the swimming pool itself is of a large size with pebbled floor with Cabanas and loungers to the other size. The sound of the rushing water was a delight and made even more impressive when the night-time closes in as the waterfalls are back-lit with a variety of colours creating an impressive visual treat.
The Royal Villa at the Philea Resort
After a short drive we reached our destination, the Royal Villas at the Philea Resort. Set upon an elevated area and overlooking the wonderful and pool and water features the Royal Villa’s cut an imposing figure being significantly larger and grander than any other of the resorts accomodation. Its difficult to see much of the Royal Villa’s detailing from the outside as they are bounded at the front by high hedging and a large wooden entrance gate. After a quick swipe of the electronic entrance card, the gate was opened and we were led onto the porch of a majestic and elegant looking detached house. The first thing that catches your eye within the grounds is the private swimming pool, extremely inviting on a hot day constructed of what looks to be natural rock and pebbles. Outside you also have your own private pavilion where you can dine away from the other guests or have private spa treatments. The exterior of the Royal Villa is made of uniformly straight Siberian Pine Logs, with matching wood framed windows and virtually invisible interleaved rope to hide any wires. It looked well made and solid, a quick rap with the knuckles confirmed this, a truly impressive structure that from the outside seems to be the right type of vacation property for the discerning traveller.
Upon entering the Royal Villa it is immediately apparent that this property has been designed for guests that demand the finest accommodation. The living area is the first room you enter with large TV, quality ornaments, thick luxurious curtains and extravagant sofas, add to this the beautiful and liberal use of wood, it all comes together to create a feeling of high quality and exclusivity. The kitchen/Dining room is the next room with a guest cloakroom and access to the floor guest bedroom. Stairs leading up to the spacious Office with desk and Chaise longue and a further double door into the huge Royal Villa master suite.
Bedrooms at the Royal Villa
The bedrooms within the Royal Villa are both beautifully appointed, both having two beds and a luxurious bathroom with a Pine Jacuzzi Spa. The Bathroom for the guest bedroom has a smaller jacuzzi with rain shower and WC, both the bedroom and bathroom have a wall mounted LCD TV. The Master Suite within the Royal Villa is a sight to behold, extending almost the full length of the building with twin King Sized beds adorned with feather pillows and attractive decorations. A door towards the front of the master suite leads onto a private balcony whilst at the other end is the huge luxury bathroom. All of the toilets within the property are heated with computer controls offering extra functions, the Jacuzzi within the Master Bathroom can comfortably fit more than two people and had the same beautiful and ornate wooden clad walls.
The overall feeling within the Royal Villa is of opulence, high quality fixtures and fittings, the feeling of being somewhere special backs up the reason why this is a favoured property of high ranking politicians, top business people and celebrities.
During our stay, the plan was to spend time in the private swimming pool of the Royal Villa, obviously if you have these private luxury facilities at your disposal it makes sense to use them. The only downside was when the urge was felt to ‘don’ the swimming attire, nature conspired against us and it rained. However, all was not lost as the Royal Villas boasted not one, but two pine indoor jacuzzi’s, with the the master suite having a jacuzzi large enough to host four people in complete comfort.
So with a glance up to the sky and a a slight muttering of ‘if you think that will stop me’, it was off to the master bathroom suite for a long relaxing period of self indulgence. Everything you could possibly want is to hand, luxury toiletries, a large wall mounted TV and a computer panel offering a range of jet options. As you stretch out and relax in your very own pine ‘mini pool’ you notice more of the eco-friendly efforts that the Philea Resort has gone to, beautiful wooden panels that resemble marble are expertly fitted to the walls with a large ‘Grecian Style’ carved frieze set above the Jacuzzi.