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This is a workcation series where we personally visit and review hotels, resorts, and more, to find out how well they cater to digital nomads and hybrid professionals. 

Hotel highlights:

✓ Instagram-worthy interior design at every corner, featuring a tranquil nature theme

✓ Well-equipped facilities such as the gym and the pool

✓ Interesting dining options within the hotel, from a comforting breakfast to a fancy French dinner

✓ Many attractions in walking distance from the hotel such as KLCC, the KL Tower, and the historical Kampung Baru area

The Crowne Plaza

It’s likely a familiar name to frequent travellers and has been known as a popular prestigious hotel for businessmen in Kuala Lumpur. 

So how is it that this 5-star stay in Kuala Lumpur City Centre (KLCC) is only less than a year old?

Don’t worry, you’re not tripping. Previously, we had another Crowne Plaza hotel (called the Crowne Plaza Mutiara) that was a staple in the area. However, that closed down back in 2013. This signalled the end of the Crowne Plaza brand’s presence in Malaysia.

That is, until last December, when the brand made a comeback with this new hotel located in Kampung Baru. And this time, the brand aims to reinstate the Crowne Plaza name locally with its KLCC outlet that’s “a perfect blend of work and play”. 

We’re happy to report that our 2D1N all-inclusive stay there certainly corroborated the vision.

An old brand making new strides

The Crowne Plaza KLCC stands tall amongst the other city skyscrapers with views of none other than the iconic Twin Towers. But this isn’t surprising as it’s a mere 10-minute walk from the landmark, which makes it easily accessible through public transport.

Not one keen on getting stuck in traffic, my colleague Claudia and I actually took the LRT to get there. The walk from the KLCC stop to the hotel’s front steps wasn’t too confusing with the help of Google Maps. It’s only a feasible option if you packed as lightly as we did, though.

Stepping into the hotel, we were greeted warmly by the staff members who facilitated a quick and smooth check-in process. Most of the guests we came across appeared to be international guests visiting for leisure but a good handful were evidently on business trips.

Of the latter, some even made good use of the solo work pods at its RhymBa Lobby Lounge and Bar. These were equipped with charging ports built into the pod’s sofas so you needn’t worry about losing power.

If you’re feeling thirsty or slightly peckish, all you have to do is place an order at the bar. There, you can find an array of alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages like beer on tap and freshly brewed coffee. Light bites such as Lamb Keema Wrap and Gambas al Ajillo are also served all day.

Overhead, the chandelier-like lights evoke the image of falling raindrops and echoes the hotel’s theme. Throughout the hotel, you’ll find plenty of decor that’s intentionally placed to remind guests of Malaysia’s rainforests. 

For example, the bronze sculpture on the wall outside the lift bay isn’t just circular nonsense. They’re actually the inner patterns you’ll find upon cutting the trunk of trees.

Work hard

We were accommodated in the 44sqm King Premium Lounge Access room featuring a separate walk-in shower and bath. Fit for two, the room’s ambience was cosy, light, and airy. The warm lighting and welcoming scent as we walked in certainly helped set the mood too.

One of the more notable features that Claudia and I found exciting was the working spaces in the room itself. 

Typically, the working desk of most hotels we’ve previously visited could only comfortably accommodate one person. But the pentagon shape of this working desk made it easier for the both of us to complete assignments. 

Business travellers will also appreciate the second working spot by the window, where you can put your feet up on the chaise lounge sofa. 

Both of these were great options especially if you prefer privacy. However, we couldn’t miss out on the opportunity to try the hotel’s coworking space. 

Called Nest@13 (as it’s on the 13th floor), it’s a business centre that’s open 24/7 with an array of coworking setups to choose from:

  • open seating
  • semi-private pods equipped with a TV, so you can have mini presentations
  • a fully-equipped private meeting room for up to seven guests

Throughout our time working there, we saw several other guests using the space as well. Some were having calls while others tapped away on their laptops, yet it wasn’t noisy or distracting at all. There’s also a few desktops available for travellers who packed lighter than us.

We also found out from Crowne Plaza KLCC’s Assistant Digital Marketing Manager, Michelle Lee, that the hotel aims to allow non-guests to book the coworking space, too. So if you’re in the area and need a suitable area to park and grind, this might be a good option.

Don’t forget to play harder

Part of the hotel room package is access to its private Club Lounge on the 31st floor. Guests can either relax or have some business calls while treating themselves to the free-flow bar (with alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages) and snacks available from 5:30PM onward. 

Those that want more indulgent meals could consider the hotel’s in-house French brasserie, Le Midi. 

Here, you’ll find a curated selection of French plats like Mousse de Foie de Poulet (Chicken Liver Mousse), Soupe à l’Oignon (French onion soup), and Lemon Sole (a flatfish native to Northern Europe). 

As we’ve never savoured many of the French dishes before, Le Midi was a good introduction to what the républicain had to offer. The complex flavours in the dishes were quite surprising, so it might be an acquired taste for those who prefer local eats. 

If you’re not feeling adventurous, there’s also the other restaurant called Merchants that’s right next to Nest@13. The all-day dining spot serves a wide range of international cuisine, from classic favourites to modern fusion creations. 

And there’s always the availability of food deliveries from elsewhere if none of these satisfy your palate.

To burn off the calories, guests have the option of taking a dip at its infinity pool or working out in the 24-hour gym. Both of these are located on the top floor, where you’ll also find a glass observation deck by the jacuzzi. 

But if that’s not enough, we recommend taking a short 15-minute walk to the nearby Ilham Gallery. A popular art gallery in KL, it showcases the modern and contemporary works of local talents. 

Who knows, you might even find your next favourite artist here?

Business and pleasure

Reintroducing itself to the Malaysian landscape, this KLCC outlet establishes Crowne Plaza as a brand that’s not only for corporates, but also leisure travellers.

It’s undoubtedly a space that workcationers shouldn’t ignore with all the amenities and conveniences available.The staff are friendly and helpful, you’re spoiled for food choices, and there’s actual dedicated spaces that make it conducive to work. 

And personally, in my opinion, it’s been one of the best stays I’ve had that balances work and play well.

What workcation crowd is Crowne Plaza KLCC fit for?Pro tip
Hybrid workersExplore the area and visit nearby local hotspots, like the Twin Towers, Ilham Gallery, and Kampung Baru
Travelling digital nomadsHave a taste of elevated local cuisine at the all-day dining restaurant, Merchants
Small teamsTake your work to Nest@13 for a more conducive space to get tasks done
  • Learn more about Crowne Plaza Kuala Lumpur City Centre here.
  • Read other workcation reviews we’ve written here.

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(UEN 201431998C.)

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