Wednesday, December 21, 2016

1 Night at The Wembley - A St Giles Hotel, Penang
Lately, I've been taking short trips up to Penang for work, usually, I try to head up early in the morning and back home by night even though it's a 4 hours drive each way from Kuala Lumpur up to the island. On a recent trip, decide that rather than tax my body this way all the time, I'd just relax a bit and spend at least a night there.

I discovered The Wembley - A St. Giles Hotel (quite a mouthful) by chance when I was going through the various apps for a place to stay. Always out to hunt for the nicest accommodation at the cheapest price. I don't really rely one a single app to do my search though so I can't give you the price of a night's stay as I see 4 different rates in 4 different apps and the prices are different now from the day I booked the room.

Located on Jalan Magazine near the Komtar Tower, it look pretty new to me as there's still hoardings around it but flow of human was already heading in to the hotel at a steady pace. I got there as a tour bus filled with tourists from China was just getting off and ready to go into their respective rooms. Sort of dampened my check-in experience as their noise basically filled the entire lobby area as everyone tries to out-shout each other. Had to raise my voice several times in order for the hotel staff to hear what I was trying to say.

Since everything was done via the app in my phone, only payment I had to put up is a deposit (in case I use the room phone) and Tourism Service Fee (TSF) that was recently implemented by the Penang government, it's similar to the charges that is imposed in Malacca, the charges are based on the number of nights that I'm there, in this case, it's only RM5 for the room I'm getting (I think the type of hotel also plays a part as some of the other hotel's TSF is higher).

Getting to the room requires the use of the access card that the hotel provides to all hotel guests, I like it this way too as non-guests won't be able to get into any of the floors easily. Gives me that extra false sense of security. Yes, I know a lot of hotels are imposing such access cards but most of those I know in KL basically allow you to run free to any floors you want with the card instead of just the floor you are staying at.

Room wise, I got the Superior King Room (fancy name for a small room that doesn't really look superior). Simple with a King Size bed, a table for me to put my notebook on and a single wifi password. Single because I can only connect 1 device to the wifi instead of the multiple devices that I have with me.

So each time I want to switch from my notebook to my iPad or to my phone, I have to log out of the other devices, it gets annoying after awhile especially when I had a discussion in the room and I have to log off after transferring files and emails via cloud in order for my guest to log in to download.

Easier to just go to a cafe to do it but I'm a lazy bugger and prefer to just get everything sorted in one location instead of moving around. The energy for that will be reserved for food hunts.

Bed wise, it's comfortable, average if compared to some of the bigger hotels I've stayed in before but for a business hotel, it's pretty decent, as long as I get a good night sleep and properly rested, it's all good.

Bathroom is a simple shower with glass doors, usual sink and seated toilet. No bath tub for the hour long soaks but then can't expect much from a business hotel, right? The usual essential toiletries are nicely packed and arrange in the toilet so for those that doesn't bring their own toiletries, it's all good.

Noise insulation wise, it's pretty decent also. I can hear the neighboring guests when they exit their rooms cause the clicks of the doors when they shut echos over but apart from that, I can barely hear the TV in my own room outside the room door when I cranked up the volume to a fairly loud level (yeah, I'm a dick like that when it comes to watching TV, especially action packed movies or sports, like to watch em loud.). So well to them on that front.

Along with my 1 night stay at the hotel is the breakfast, I know there's loads of tasty food out there but sometimes, I just don't want to get stuck in the morning rush hour traffic just to reach the restaurant and wolf down my meal in a hurry because I need to get to another place on time.

So off to the hotel's restaurant on the 2nd floor, it's not a huge place so best time to hit the payload is early in the morning before the tourists shows up, which is noticeable cause the noise will hit you before you see them walking in. Range of food is OK, skipped most of the local stuff as they tend to load plenty of chilies into those.

Not sure if it's done on purpose by hotels so that only a select few can eat them. I truly believe that there's a conspiracy by all hotels in Malaysia to make sure every local dish they cook contain loads and loads of chilies to kill off those of us who can't take it. Not everyone can eat spicy food and in my case, I can't but then, there's plenty of other choices for me to devour.

Overall, it's quite an OK place if you just need a room to rest and you're on the island for work/business and not for leisure. Across from the hotel is a mall too so you can do some shopping there, it's a small hotel comparing to those that littered Gurney area but if you'd wanted a hotel with the facilities like those at that area, you'd have booked a hotel in that area, right?

The Wembley - A St Giles Hotel, Penang

183, Jalan Magazine, George Town,
10300 George Town, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia
Tel: +604-259-8000

Ratings :

Service :

Comfort :

Cleanliness/Ambiance :

Security :

Value For Money :

Map :
Click to expand

*Service - Overall service by the hotel staff
*Comfort - Comfort level during duration of stay
*Cleanliness/Ambiance - Overall Cleanliness of the hotel and room
*Security - Sense of security during stay
*Value for Money - Bang for the bucks in comparison with hotels equivalent to it.

Blogs about Dance, Travel and Food, Photography and gadgets that he purchases for work. Am available to do reviews.


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