WHAT’S IT LIKE? Set on an elevation, the hotel fans out towards the picturesque Song Shan Lake and lychee orchards below. High ceilings are a marked trait of the hotel – especially obvious in its sprawling lobby and numerous public spaces – and so are fountains and water features. The entire feel is one of a large contemporary residence, cleverly built to maximise its location by the lake.?
WHERE IS IT? Located in the newly developed commercial zone, created around the Dongguan Song Shan Lake Science and Technology Park and along the waterfront of the government-protected Song Shan Lake. Views of this serene body of water are visible from many of the guestrooms and almost all of the outlets and facilities. It’s a smooth 90-minute ride from Guangzhou’s New Baiyun International Airport and 45 minutes from the Shenzhen Bao An International Airport. Various factory sites are less than 20 to 30 minutes away.??
HOW MANY ROOMS? 350 guestrooms and suites, designed by Florida-based Bilkey Llinas Design, are spread throughout two wings, made up of eight floors each. Most of the lakeview rooms (pictured) have a balcony featuring an enclosed, oversized sunken bathub. The Presidential Suite comes with its own private swimming pool.??
ROOM FACILITIES: LCD televisions with cable channels, workdesks, broadband internet access (CNY90/US$13 per day) and touch-pad controls for lighting and air condition.
RESTAURANTS: The Café has multiple open kitchens for all-day meals, fine-dining restaurant Copper Grill serves top-quality Australia-imported steaks and lychee-wood grilled seafood, while Qin Yuan suits those with a yen for Cantonese cuisine in any of its 28 private dining suites, with a choice of à la carte and seasonal menu. Our lunch at the Song Shan Tea House was a pleasure, with stunning lakeviews and a show kitchen where southern Chinese family-style dishes are prepared.
BARS: The lobby lounge (above) boasts lakeviews yet again and a lit platform that’s the centrepiece. Lychee Bar has a sushi counter and a variety of drinks including lychee yoghurt shake and lychee martini.
BUSINESS FACILITIES: A pillarless balloom is made to allow generous natural lighting and lakeview balconies are perfect for incorrigible smokers. Up to 1,000 guests in a cocktail setup can be accommodated. Eleven multipurpose function rooms for powwows of various sizes are available. Off the lobby is the business centre with workstations. Wi-Fi is only available in the meeting and other public spaces.??
LEISURE FACILITIES: The split-level Song Spa and Fitness Centre with an indoor heated pool, sauna, Jacuzzi, spa pools, relaxation areas, treatment rooms, gym and pool table; and an outdoor infinity pool with water slides and several pool beds by the lake that are well positioned so one could enjoy the breeze.
PRICE: Internet rates on weekdays in early August start at CNY900 (US$130).?
VERDICT: For a new property, the staff were pretty tuned on and quickly anticipated our needs. Makes an ideal base for the businessman or a weekend escape.??
CONTACT: Song Shan Lake Central District Science and Technology Industrial Park, Qinyuan Road, Dongguan, Guangdong, PRC 523808, China, tel 86 769 2289 1234, www.hyatt.com