Kuala Lumpur was our second experience with Airbnb and as we had such a great experience in Hong Kong (you can read about it here) I was pretty confident that Kuala Lumpur would be just as good or better. I had booked a two bedroom apartment in Bukit Bintang as I was told it was a good central place to base yourselves in Kuala Lumpur. We stayed in Kuala Lumpur for 2 nights on the way through to Kota Kinabalu and another 2 nights on the way back from Kota Kinabalu heading home. I think I need to allow more time in Kuala Lumpur as I now feel that I haven’t had even scratched the surface of what Kuala Lumpur has to offer.
We arrived in Kuala Lumpur in the afternoon and caught the KLIA express to Sentral station. We then walked around to the monorail to get to Raja Chulan which is the closest station to the apartment we booked. You could get off at either Raja Chulan or Bukit Bintang but we found it was more accessible with the luggage and kids from Raja Chulan. I encourage the kids to catch public transport and assist in getting ourselves round instead of catching taxi’s everywhere which at times stretches my patience but it kind of cute to see them pulling there own luggage like good little backpackers! They will be primed and ready for it by the time they get to their gap year which I have told them they must have!
The instructions to find the place where very thorough and after having found the place I can see it all very clearly! At the time though, with the luggage, the kids and being in a new city it wasn’t quite that straight forward! Operator error I do beleive! Luckily enough I’ve never been shy, I asked some fellas in one of the shops and when they started to struggle a bit, they enlisted a couple of local ladies that happened to be walking down the street.
People are so friendly in Kuala Lumpur and these lovely ladies not only took the time to help us but they took us half way until we were able to see the apartment building. I must admit though if you knew Kuala Lumpur a little bit, you wouldn’t have nearly us much trouble as we did. The Bidara Apartment building it right behind the Istana Hotel, one of the most popular 5 star hotels in Kuala Lumpur. Admittedly we weren’t that far off so we had done pretty well to get as far as we did.
The location was awesome, in between both the monorail stations either way was a short 5 min walk. We were 20 min walk on a mostly covered walk way to the Petronas Towers, were there is great shopping and various restaurants that you could take your pick from and also 5 mins walk from the main drag of Bukit Bintang.
The host has a couple of apartments that she lets in the same building. All are located on the penthouse floor and both that we stayed in had 2 bedrooms. Big change after our last apartment in Hong Kong. We stayed in different apartments during each stay and I liked the first one much better as it had a balcony. Both were fine though and I will be happy to hire either of them next year when we return!
It was nice to have a kitchen and the host had provided bottled water for us to use which was handy. It also had 2 spacious bathrooms and the host has provided a mattress and bedding for our 3rd child. The kids were very excited about not having to share a bed between three of them like they did in Hong Kong! Alannah and Caelan shared the queen in the bedroom and Keira had the mattress in the living room. Our bedroom had an ensuite which was great.
The apartment had split air conditioning in both bedrooms and the main lounge, there was also wifi and the thing I liked most was the laundrette located in the foyer of the building which charged us approx. $5 AUD for 3kgs of washing – awesome! The host also allowed us to leave a suitcase at the apartment when we went to Kota Kinabalu for 5 nights. This was invaluable as we had accumulated a heap of luggage by this stage and the case we left was full of souvenirs that we had purchased in Hong Kong for the kids and the family back home.
There’s one other thing I would like to highlight here about how wonderful the hosts were at this apartment, I’m a little embarrassed to say but one of the kids got grease all over their shoes from the escalators whilst we were out and about. Unbeknown to us, when we got back to the apartment Keira sat down and crossed her legs and got grease all over their carpet. We went out to find some degreaser to try and remove it but we were unable to find any and the request to purchase degreaser was getting lost in translation when we were asking shop assistants. I ended up having to contact the host and offer to pay for the damage or for the dry cleaning of the carpet which I was more than happy to do. The host replied not to worry about it, they would look after it and if there were any problems they would contact me. To this day I have not heard from them requesting payment of any form. The hosts reply was ‘not to worry Sally, accident happen, I’m sure its not a bad as I think’.
Whenever I return to Kuala Lumpur I will be staying in these Airbnb apartments and I encourage anyone else in Kuala Lumpur to do the same. The host is fantastic, location awesome and the price very reasonable. Its the small things that count when you are in a strange country and things like providing water, the laundrette in the foyer and providing details of the immediate area for things such as good food outlets, directions and so forth that make all the difference.
We paid approx. $100AUD per night which is a great price for 5 people, you can view the apartment here. I can’t recommend these hosts more highly and we will certainly be returning to stay with them in 2015.
Take care and happy travels.