Editor’s Note: With Malaysia next on my travel docket, it seemed fitting to share a contributor post on the subject. While my own travels will be taking me to Sabah, I’m sure it will only whet my appetite to explore the rest of the country.
Melaka, perhaps better known to westerners as Malacca, is one of Malaysia’s most well-known provinces and its capital, Malacca City is a popular tourist destination due to its blend of British and Peranakan culture.
Editor’s Note: You can read about my experience discovering Singapore’s Peranakan culture.
There’s something about experiencing one of the former British colonies and staying in colonial extravagance, and there are quite a few Melaka hotels that cater to this desire. Combining local culture with old world elegance and charm, they’re a treat for those fascinated with this bygone era.
We’ve highlighted two of the finest hotels in Melaka here.
Casa Del Rio Melaka
Jalan Kota Laksamana 88
Casa Del Rio Melaka’s claim to fame is that it was Melaka’s first 5 star luxury hotel. Built on the banks of the Melaka River, this hotel combines the exotic charm of the famous Malacca Straits with the majestic history that influences so much of the city.
The building boasts a fusion of Portuguese and Melaka Sultanate tastes in its architecture, lending it a feeling of austerity and old world pomp.
The hotel’s 66 rooms and suites are designed to showcase a Mediterranean style influenced by the local Peranakan culture while also having the ultra-modern amenities that have become standard in hotels. You’ll be enjoying your iPhone dock, WiFi, flat screen TV, and AC while still feeling like you’re staying in a time long past.
With rooms at least 50 square metres in size, there’s plenty of room for a marble tiled bathroom (complete with massive bathtub), an exclusive dressing room, and a balcony overlooking either the Melaka River or the world-famous Malacca Straits.
Beyond your room, you’ll find high speed internet, an infinity pool, on-site gym & spa, two bars, and two restaurants designed to showcase the local cuisine in a modern and exciting setting
Located at the beating heart of Melaka City, the famous Jonker Street antique stores and night market are just a two minute walk from the front door. The hotel can also arrange Melaka River cruises and trishaw tours of the historic city for their guests.
The Majestic Malacca
Jalan Bunga Raya 188
Housed in a restored Straits Settlement mansion complete with original porcelain tiling and teak wood fittings, the Majestic Hotel is majestic in every sense of the word.
All of the Majestic Hotels rooms embrace a heady combination of luxury, tradition, and modern convenience. The fully varnished teak furniture speaks to the glory days of old Malacca, with a highlight being a massive four poster bed. Floor to sealing windows are draped in silk, allowing soft light to breathe ambiance into the room. Completing this old world charm is a classic claw footed bath tub.
The hotel’s 54 rooms are divided between deluxe rooms and two kinds of suite, the Majestic and the Tranquerah. All rooms feature modern amenities such as air conditioning, flat screen TVs with DVD players, iPod docks, fridge, electronic safe, and internet access.
The signature suites boast a size of 70 square metres with sitting room and powder room, all of which overlook the Melaka River and the traditional Kampung Morten Malay village.
The Mansion on site restaurant is something truly special, boasting an electic selection of multicultural flavors from Nyonya, Malaysia, China, India, and Portugal. For this wishing to sip a cocktail, the on site bar maintains the hotels air of sophistication and grace.
Another popular aspect of the hotel is its Spa Village Mallaca service, offering pampering for the body and soul with a variety of treatments. Spa Village Malacca boasts the only spa on earth that practices Peranakan healing practices, offering you something you’ll find nowhere else on earth.
Have you ever visited Malacca and experienced its old world charms?