Mutiara Burau Bay Beach Resort and Spa
trailing the mountain range
our laughter and joy
by john tiong Chunghoo
While the younger ones run around browsing for clues to their treasure hunt, I spend mine learning to paint batik - in the sweltering heat that sweeps through Langkawi at this time of the year in March.
All morning, it has been delightful to see my red and orange dyes spread out to become a stunning hisbiscus on a little piece of cottont. Just like the holiday here that has turned into a thrilling experience at the four starred Mutiara Burau Bay Beach Resort with its excellent back to nature feel.
A bewildering spectre of nature unfolds right in front of us as we are swept away with joy by the breeze, the emerald cresting of the sea, and a well manicured resort garden of frangipani, coconut palms, bougainvillea and the flame of the forest.
There is a grandeur in the Mat Cincang Mountain - our resort is at its foothills - that one cannnot resist admiring especially its riveting range that trails over the sky
like the scrawling of divinity.
The mountain, at 710 metres, is the second highest peak in Langkawi. It looms over the Northeastern part of the island
with ever ready stories and legends to awe the most well travelled tourists.
The rock formations which are more than 550 million years old has earned the island the first Unesco Geopark status in South East Asia two years ago.
We have visited its primary atraction, the Seven Wells
a series of little waterfalls that flow over huge boulders,
forming well like pools, that have since the old days been believed to be the bath places of fairies.
In the hot season, the water can run quite dry but in the wet season from August to October, the waterfall can be quite a sight oozing down the musculine looking slopes.
It is almost a blessing when we found that there is a cable car service from the Oriental Village nearby, a quaint shopping and dining enclave that gives us a chance to go to the peak of the mountain to savour the colourful landscape of the island.
Go for the morning forest walk at the foothills of Gunung Mat Cincang as you will be able to catch a sight of the the world’s smallest orchids as well as pitcher plants.
Two hundred over bird species could be found
in Langkawi. So if you are a birdwatcher, that is a boon.
Animals on the island include the Mousedeer, the world’s only gliding monkey, the Flying Lemur, the Dusky-Leaf Monkey some of whom would come visiting at the Mutiara Burau Bay Beach Resort, the long-tailed Macaque and Slow Loris. Giant Squirrels, Flying foxes, Civet Cats and the Pangolin. add colours to the adventures in Langkawi.
It is the high season in Langkawi between November and April as caucasians escape the harsh winter at home to savour the tropical weather here.
Apart from their robust laugh and cheers over beer and coffee on the beaches, the island also resounds with the
calls and chirpings of migratory birds from the Northern hemisphere that all add up to the charms of the island.
At our resort , it has been a hive of activity. Waitors and waitresses tell us it has been a busy season. Breakfast
and dinner usually mean hours of walk, serving.
Guests lull on reclining chairs on the beach as well as around the resort’s fanciful shaped swimming pool, reading or just doing nothing while others swim in the bay fringed by the Gunung Mat Cincang at one side and Pantai Kok on the other.
The beach bar we go in the afternoon is also swarmed with men, women and children in swimming trunks, sharing stories of their adventures over beer, coffee and snacks.
The batik hut where I have spent the whole morning has also attracted a small group of guests, some to talk about their adventures with the batik teacher Azizi Alyas while
others just concentrate on the art of batik making.
One of the women makes quite an impression on me as she quietly dispenses her dyes on a meditative looking buddha.
Most of the guests here have paid RM65 for their lessons
from the master Azizi Alyas here afterwhich they keep the batik painting or leave it here for sale.
PARK LIKE RESORT
Mutiara Burau Bay Beach Resort is laid out like a park.
Be observant and you will be rewarded with the sights of hornbills, dusky leaf monkeys, squirrels and eagles.
If you are lucky, you may even sport the brown-winged kingfishers that make the mangroves between the Mutiara Burau Bay and Berjaya Resorts here their homes.
Mutiara Burau Bay Resort cabanas are set among well manicured greenery.
The best part is plants like the Paku Bogak are labelled with vital descriptions for children to learn about their
uniqueness. At the cafe, guests are also told to be mindful of monkeys that might come a-visiting, hoping they could have a bite of their food.
Some of the more expensive chalets such as the two Barau suites are equipped with round jaccuzi on its terrace. The suites with two rooms good for four adults and two children straddle the hillside with balconeys that afford a good view of the sea. The night can be slept away with breeze blowing in from the sea.
RESORT FOOD AND BEVERAGE
We are served fresh barbecued seafood; fishes, oysters, prawns and crabs, and surprisingly sushi at the Seashell Beach Cafe with live music from some exotic land in the evening. Part of the restaurant is open air lending it a very back to nature experience.
For those who do not wish too much of hotel food, there are local stores that serve local food right outside the hotel gate.
And if you are adventurous, you can even walk the stretch of Pantai Kok from here where we discover very delicious Pasembor that has earned her rave reviews among national papers.
The Thai palace set built for the 1999 Jodie Foster’s movie Anna and the King filmed here many years back still stands but in a dilapidated condition, doors, and roofs collapsing. It used to be a destination spot but it is said that a new hotel would be built over the site. Hopefully, with Langkawi’s pristine beauty and plentiful of adventures, dinning and lengendary spots, more directors would throng the beaches for their movies.
Mutiara Burau Bay Beach Resort
Burau Bay, LangkawI
Kedah Darul rizuan
Drive towards Pantai Kok, Northeast of the Airport. It takes about half hour to reach. From the jetty, it would take about an hour. Drive west towards Mukim Kedawang then towards the airport direction. From there, take the northeast or Pantai Kok route. See map here: www.mutiarahotels.com/mutiara_buraubay/bb_home_lm.html
Nature here beckons especially the lush greenery with Gunung Mat Cincang as backdrop. Oriental Village offers a place to shop as well as a cable car service up the mountain to view the landscape of Langkawi. Telaga Harbour offer a convenient stopover for fusion and food from other parts of the world. The mysterious Seven Wells in the mountain is worth trekking up to have a look as well as swim in.
Sightseeing information available here: www.mutiarahotels.com/mutiara_buraubay/bb_activities_info.html
A simple set up with obliging staff that ensures your stay is memorable.
One hundred and fifty wooden cabanas in all with
122 Superior Cabanas, 26 Studio Cabanas and two Burau Suites. The suites are sea facing while the others are either sea or garden facing. To view promotional rates please visit www. mutiarahotels.com/mutiara_buraubay/bb_rnr_room.html
F & B FACILITIES
Most guests prefer the Seri Mutiara Restaurant & Terrace and the Seashell Beach and Cafe with the Oyster Bar and Lounge near the lobby as a convenient third during check out and check in. The hotel’s Dewan Impian that can hold up to 120 people for convention or parties. Themed back to nature parties are welcomed here.
An outdoor spa to have yourself massaged by experienced massuse. A recreation desk that attends to your holiday needs such as jetski, surfing, parasailing, cruising, airport transfers, jungle trekking, internet, as well as learning a traditional game like 'congkak among others.
Staff makes you feel at home in a resort you are left to experience all its magic.