WHAT’S IT LIKE? A Malaysian-owned, business hotel located alongside international big names like Mandarin Oriental, Shangri-La and Westin. Impiana KLCC opened in 2006 and is among the five properties (together with Impiana Cherating Resort, Impiana Casuarina Hotel Ipoh, Impiana Phuket Cabana Resort & Spa and Impiana Samui Resort & Spa) managed by Impiana Hotels & Resorts.
Step inside the lobby of this modern four-star hotel and tension from navigating KL’s gridlock melts away. A high ceiling and modest furnishings give a sense of space, while a palette of greens and browns helps calm the nerves of any frazzled traveller. Service was warm and welcoming. I appreciated the staff’s thoughtful gesture of offering me a cold wet towel and mint tea at check in.
WHERE IS IT? An hour’s drive from the Kuala Lumpur International Airport and 20 minutes from the Sentral train station, last stop of the KLIA Express. The hotel is part of the KL City Centre and is located at the Jalan Pinang-Jalan P Ramlee intersection, sitting diagonally opposite the Convention Centre. The Petronas Twin Towers can be seen from its entrance.
HOW MANY ROOMS? 335 guestrooms ranging from 30sqm to 60sqm.
ROOM FACILITIES: High-speed internet access, coffee and tea-making facilities, laptop-size safe, hairdryer, individually controlled air-conditioning, IDD phone, iron and ironing board, minibar, radio and satellite TV are the room standards. I stayed in one of the 13 Superior Deluxe Suites, each featuring separate lounge and sleep areas. The elongated bathroom in my suite was nicely tucked away next to the wardrobe, giving added privacy.
The staff’s attention to detail was impeccable. I requested an internet cable and got it within minutes. This was followed by a call from the staff enquiring if it had in fact been delivered. However, when I tried logging on, the internet server was down prompting me to call the IT staff, who showed up at my doorstep eight minutes later and managed to fix the problem right away. My only grouse was they did not replenish the toiletries (like shampoo) on the second day of my stay.
RESTAURANTS: Only one – Tonka Bean Café.Deli. This all-day dining restaurant has a buffet counter and a choice of indoor dining (with seating for 180) or alfresco (24), and attracts lunch crowds from the nearby offices. Deli opens from 0800-2100.
The lunch menu featured a variety of local delights like nasi lemak (Malay-style coconut-flavoured rice). My companion and I chose to go à la carte, paying M$52.90 (US$15) for the both of us, which I thought was very reasonable. The best seats in the house had to be those by the window – perfect for people watching.
BARS: After-fivers can head to Oswego Bar.Wine for a martini, champagne or beer, or Bohemia Tobacco.Bar for a Cuban cigar and drinks. Lobby Lounge Tea serves snacks, wine and cocktails.
BUSINESS FACILITIES: A banquet hall caters to 200 theatre-style or 420 for cocktails. Four meeting rooms range between 35sqm and 87sqm, two of which can be combined (at 108sqm).
LEISURE FACILITIES: Swasana Spa, Impiana’s own brand, opened in April this year and is also found at its Samui and Phuket properties. Also an indoor infinity pool, gym and aerobic room.
VERDICT: My stay was made pleasurable with a team of service-oriented staff.
PRICE: Special internet rates start from RM219 (US$63) nightly until December 31.
CONTACT: 13 Jalan Pinang, 50450 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, tel 60 3 2147 1111, www.impiana.com