WHAT’S IT LIKE? The five-star property opened last year as the flagship of Chinatrust Hotels Ltd. Offering 10 levels, it features full-length French windows that allow copious amounts of natural light into its high-ceilinged lobby on level three as well as the views of the lake and mountains.
The interior is simple yet elegant with its use of wood, stone and glass. Nantou is known for its porcelain ware, hence the many decorative art pieces scattered throughout hotel, notably by the lift landings. Natural light streaming through the lobby’s large windows enhance these beautiful furnishings and objets d’art.
WHERE IS IT? Located on the north peninsula of Sun Moon Lake, one of Taiwan’s famed tourist destinations. Getting to the hotel takes about 90 minutes from the Taichung High-Speed Railway and three hours from Taoyuan International Airport.
HOW MANY ROOMS? 211 guestrooms on levels five to 10, including standard rooms and Japanese-style Washiki Rooms, all boasting lake or mountain lakes.
ROOM FACILITIES: The room design fuses western and Japanese aesthetics. My corner unit on level seven, a Washiki Lake View Room, had full-length windows all around, offering a generous view of Sun Moon Lake. Being a Japanese-style room, the flooring was made of wood and tatami. A low table and chairs took pride of place in the living area. There was a balcony in every room and all bathrooms had an indoor hot-spring pool, separate shower complete with wooden stool and wash basin, and a bidet (an uncommon feature in most hotels these days).
Staff were efficient and quick with the turn-down service. When I returned to my room after dinner, I found that my bed had been prepared for the night much to my delight. The Japanese-style floor bed turned out to be soft and comfortable.
Other room amenities included minibar (beverages are complimentary), personal safe, LCD TV, Crabtree & Evelyn bath amenities and IP phone (available only in guestrooms on levels nine to 10). The hotel is Wi-Fi enabled throughout.
RESTAURANTS & BARS: The hotel provides guests with complimentary breakfast and dinner in two restaurants – Andre’s and Peninsula. The Western restaurant on level two, Andre’s serves buffet breakfast and dinner with indoor and outdoor seating, and is popular with diners. On the same floor is Peninsula, which offers a good variety of Chinese dinner sets.
At Tepan, reservations are required. Its executive chef provides tableside service and there are VIP rooms suitable for small groups. On the reception level, there’s Tea Tree and Patisserie for light bites.
BARS: Guests can opt for Club 88 with four karaoke rooms. Booking is recommended if you intend to work those diaphragm muscles.
BUSINESS FACILITIES: A multipurpose function room measures 1,000sqm and suits any configuration needs. Full-length windows overlooking the lake and a five-metre high ceiling add to its spaciousness, and there’s also an outdoor space, ideal for cocktails.
The hotel has no executive floors, but there is a spacious VIP lounge on the reception level and computer workstations are available.
LEISURE FACILITIES: Recreational facilities here cater for the entire family so guests can take full advantage of the resort’s off-the-beaten-track location. There’s a host of facilities available, such as hot-spring and spa facilities, 3,000- square-metre water pools, indoor swimming pool, children’s pool, cool pool, sundeck, beauty and hair salon, gym, kids’ playground, art room, computer area, separate male and female hot-spring pools and private VIP hot-spring rooms.
A dedicated harbour terminal caters for guests who wish to tour the famous Sun Moon Lake. Service staff can make arrangements and take them to the terminal for the lake cruise, which costs NT$300 (US$9) per person.
PRICE: Nightly rates start from NT$11,000 (US$342) for a Mountain View Room and from NT$12,000 (US$373) for a Lake View Room.
VERDICT: It had all the ingredients to spell the perfect holiday. We got to rest and relax and were treated to great service. Fleur de Chine Hotel
CONTACT: 23 Zhong Zheng Road, Sun Moon Lake, Yuchi Shiang, Nantou County 555, Taiwan, tel 886 49 285 5500, www.fenisiahotel.com
The Fenisia is soon to be renamed the Fleur de Chine Hotel.