Villa Samadhi, Luxury Retreat, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
No signage, other than a small plaque indicating this property is a member of Secret Resorts, marks the gate. A friendly, but thorough, security guard checks us off on his arrival list and we park inside the compound.
Paper bark trees narrate an enchanting entrance. A red brick pavement and white washed walls are lined with these mystical trees and small shrubbery. As dusk approaches, torches are lit leading the eye down a fiery tropical dream to paradise. Villa Samadhi is a hidden sanctum and, in writing this piece, many will be disappointed that I’ve unveiled their private sanctuary.
Fish Pond and Paper Bark Trees Lining the Entrance
Before we exit the car, a beaming bellboy is at our window, ready to assist. Bags swept away, we’re greeted by the resident manager, Ms. Cherie, who shepherds us to reception. Seated on a verandah overlooking the pool, we’re served chilled ginger tea and a scented, wet towel. Sounds strange, but we’re still dazzled by the stylish entryway and, it takes us a minute or so to take in the even more impressive beauty before us.
A lagoon shaped pool weaves around a waterfall, bridge, giant bubbling pots and, pods of tropical trees and reeds. There’s movement in the water. Jets gurgle from the walls forming shimmering ripples reflecting the sun’s last rays across the surface. Red Chinese lanterns are strung in three long lines from the main building to bordering coconut palms. How did this place stay below our radar for so long?
Twenty-one rooms are built around this gem. The double story residence holds seven room categories ranging from 600 square feet to over 2000 square feet! The layout of each is unique and, different features come with various classifications. Some are furnished with a kitchenette, others Jacuzzis, still others have the pool at their doorstep and, one even has balcony views of the city skyline including the Petronas Twin Towers.
Direct Pool Access from the Ground Floor Patios
The Luxe Sarang is our home for the next few days and benefits from both direct pool access from its patio and, a garden courtyard with in-built Jacuzzi. Its size is more than ample and we find ourselves calculating in our heads as to whether this holiday villa might actually be larger than our entire apartment. Space is a luxury in any large city and Villa Samadhi capitalizes on this by keeping decoration to a minimum and lines clean, leaving opulently roomy areas to move about.
Bedroom of Luxe Sarang Room
A modern Asian design integrated with the elements of nature and, contemporary technologies have built an urban nest. Polished cement floors, recycled woods, bamboo paneling, thatched roof and antique furniture connect the structure to its environs and local culture. Air conditioning, mini fridge, cable TV, DVD player, room service, i-Pod dock, Wi-Fi and safe – all of the conveniences you’d expect of a large hotel – are in these boutique villas.
Our Garden Patio – Jacuzzi in the back right corner and a day bed in the bushes to the left
We’ve arrived Friday evening after work so have time for a quick dip in the pool and then ready ourselves for dinner. A rain shower in a bamboo walled room freshens us. I’m pleased to see ceramic dispensers of shampoo, body wash, hand soap and moisturiser. Not only do they add a touch of class to the bathroom, but too reduce the amount of rubbish generated by those tiny travel sized containers so often found in hotels, in turn helping the environment a little bit too. Dual sinks makes getting ready a breeze and hubby and I are soon heading out the door.
Bathroom in Luxe Sarang Villa
Complimentary transfer to the Tamarind restaurants (Neo, Hill and Springs) is an appreciated benefit. All three have a reputation for carrying just as much character as the villas in design, but are too well thought of in terms of quality service and food. Our driver soon has us in the city centre where we’re about to delight in modern Thai dishes with a dash of Burmese tradition.
Complimentary Transport to Tamarind Restaurants
Entrance to Tamarind Hill
A candlelit stairway winds up to the entrance of Tamarind Hill restaurant. Red Chinese lanterns hang from the bamboo-lined path and the sound of running water gets stronger as we ascend. Torches and candles glow in an almost tribal salutation. The elements of fire and water are used well to create a peaceful natural escape. Creative cocktails, fresh and spicy cuisine, superb service and, a magical ambience describe our evening. We leave pleasantly satiated (and perhaps a tad tipsy), ever so happy that our chauffeur awaits to safely escort us home.
Yummy Cocktails and Thai-Burmese Cuisine at Tamarind Hill
Back in our room, our king size bed is elevated a foot or so off the floor, gifting it with quite a regal appearance. It’s covered with plush sheets and pillows and we soon nod off into a deep sleep.
Inviting Spot to Relax on in Garden
Long fingers of sunlight push between the cracks of our dark curtains coaxing us awake. Drawing the fabric all the way open, we grin at our pool view and the glistening water almost seems to wink back as us. Tables are being dressed for breakfast across the other side of the pond, at Mandi Mandi, and the smell of eggs frying leads us, like children after the Pied Piper, to a table.
An a la carte menu, dominated by Western favourites, and an exciting mix of juices and shakes, is supported by a light buffet of fruits, breads, cheeses and, tea and coffee. Hubby has pancakes, and myself, the eggs. They’re simple but satisfying dishes. Truthfully though, we’re not paying too much attention to the food. Our table is poolside and we’re behaving like children playfully dipping our toes in the warm water between bites.
Mandi Mandi – Villa Samadhi’s all day dining restaurant
Breakfast at Mandi Mandi by the Pool
Needless to say, the rest of our morning and into the mid afternoon is spent worshipping the water. A waterfall cascades into the pool. An island in the middle is also streaming water and, the curvaceous lines of the rim provide private alcoves for quiet contemplation. Day beds surround the edges, but we have our very own on our balcony so use the fanned space for an afternoon nap.
Day Beds Surround the Pool
To send us even further into a state of serenity, we’ve booked an Aromatherapy Massage. The therapist sets up shop in our room and we take turns being pounded by the masseuse’s strong hands. As she’s leaving we notice the jets in the Jacuzzi are on (they’re on a timer for the late afternoon and night) so finish with a salted bath under the open sky.
Massage in Room
Time again has disappeared and we ready ourselves for dinner. First stop though is cocktail hour with the resident manager and other guests at the Bumbung, Villa Samadhi’s roof-top bar. A barman shakes up cocktails for those with a sweet tooth or serves beer and bottom shelf spirits as other options. The open walled space allows a view of the city skyline, but also an intriguing closer look at the thatched roof of the villa – an impressive sight indeed.
Bumbung – Roof Top Bar
As the sun disappears, we’re informed our driver is waiting and we head out again in a luxury vehicle to our dinner location. This night, we visit Tamarind Springs restaurant.
The descent, a gently lit pathway, leads us towards a jungle paradise. Lush tropical verdure borders the trail and Chinese lanterns gently rock to and fro in the soft breeze. As we continue, our eyes are drawn by flickering flames and, our ears caressed by the whispers of running water and chill Buddha Bar tunes.
Tamarind Springs is an open walled pavilion perched in a corner lot of the KDE Golf Club. From some vantage points it overlooks the palm tree flanked fairways. Other roosts face the magnificent jungle. Teak furniture, Asian sculptures and carvings are backed by deep red walls. It’s a sensuously warm and inviting ambience.
Mango and Salmon Salad at Tamarind Springs
Indo-Chine cuisine is at the forefront of the menu. It’s homey, made to classic recipes that you might find at grandma’s house. The spice level however, has been adjusted, allowing uninitiated mouths, a taste of
the delicacies, without the need of a fire extinguisher. Seafood seems to be quite popular, so we spend the night with an oceanic theme and some excellent wine.
Bodies and minds resisting, we finally haul ourselves away from our dreamlike nest. We ascend the stairs content and, grateful for a small chance to digest our immoderation. The smooth transfer from the restaurant to our beds leaves us with few memories as we awake from another restful night determined to make the most of our last few hours in this blissful haven.
Another leisurely breakfast and another refreshing swim see us up to the check-out time. We’re sad to leave, but are cheered by the thought that we’re not faced with a long trip back home. Our house is mere minutes away, and that by itself makes Villa Samadhi even more appealing.
Note: Villa Samadhi is purposefully built as a relaxing getaway for adults. It is not suitable for youngsters, especially those under 12 years of age.
Reason to visit: gorgeous poolside villa retreat right here in the city centre!!! (save your Ringgit and your time)