Hotel: Villa Samadhi, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Location: Upscale locale ten minutes from the centre of Kuala Lumpur and 45 minutes from the airport.
Why: 21 spacious rooms in the heart of the city, indulgent private plunge pool, healthy Indonesian food.
When: March to September is the best time.
Insider: Great shopping in Suria KLCC and Bukit Bintang, fun ladies night at Neo Tamarind is every Saturday (www.facebook.com/neotamarindkl)
Business stopovers are often viewed as a means to an end, a nuisance delaying you from getting to your final destination.
Why not view business stopovers as an opportunity to relax and take a preparatory rest before being plunged into real work dominated by relentless meetings? During a recent trip to Kuala Lumpur, I found the perfect business stopover; close to the city centre and luxurious enough to leave me feeling rejuvenated on departure.
Taking its name from the Sanskrit for journey, Villa Samadhi is a boutique hotel located in an upscale locale in Kuala Lumpur’s a leafy embassy district. As you pass the city’s famous skyscrapers, the hotel’s soaring thatched roof is an unexpected surprise.
The huge bamboo-clad gates shut you away from the bustle of the city, and cocoon you in a beautiful resort. The screech of cars is replaced by the sound of waterfalls and the artificial streetlights are replaced with candle-lit pathways.
The Asian-inspired rooms are simple and rustic made with black cement and timber used from abandoned ‘kampung’ village houses.
All the rooms are unique with large open spaces, my room felt like an apartment.
Most rooms have a heated outdoor plunge bath, room to water access for those rooms on the ground floor, a rainforest shower, high-plush beds and a dedicated wine fridge.
Each room boasts all the mod cons; hair driers, toothpaste, vanity kits, shower caps, sarongs, slippers and dressing gowns. The rooms would have been perfect if they had a mirror in the bedroom, as the bathroom was not air conditioned so it got quite stuffy, and a towel rail in the bathroom to hang wet towels.
When travelling away the food selection can be limited or unhealthy. This was far from the case at Villa Samadhi, where the selection of healthy and delicious food was a relief. Mandi Mandi, the in-house restaurant, serves local Indonesian and Western-fusion dishes wherever you want to eat them, in a luxury canopy overlooking the pool, in the restaurant or in your room.
For those that fancy exploring cuisine further a field, Villa Samadhi offers a complementary transfer to one of their four nearby restaurants. I visited the magical Tamarind Springs, located in a wooden open-air lodge in a nearby jungle. The seared scallops with strawberries and cinnamon skewered duck were delicious.
Arriving back at the hotel I had a cheeky lychee Belini in the Bambung rooftop bar, before taking a last dip in my salted plunge pool and drifting off I sleep my kingsize bed.
Why not take a break from the skyscraper conveyor belt and head for something completely different. Villas Samadhi is a boutique resort in a thriving city, where you can truly relax and recharge your business brain.
Need to know
Prices start from £150 per night for a double room with breakfast. Visit www.villasamadhi.com.my. Maiden Voyage members can benefit from exclusive discounts on accommodation and restaurants by contacting Lydia@samadhiretreats.com.