Modesty Meets Luxury At KL's Sheraton Imperial

10 March 2015

Deep in the heart of the Kuala Lumpur’s Golden Triangle you will find traditional 5-star elegance at its best at the Sheraton Imperial Hotel.

As I arrive my car door is instantly flung open and I am greeted by a smiling valet decked out in Malaysian attire.

The hotel’s foyer is sumptuous with a sweeping staircase, polished marble floors and high ceilings adorned with art deco lighting.

 Hospitable valets at wait patiently by the front entrance

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An Effortless Opulence

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The rich carved timber wall panels showcase the hotel’s low-key modern-classic Asian flair beautifully and dotted through the foyer there is a plethora of comfortable couches and club chairs toned in warm avocado and mandarin.

The foyer is a hive of activity.  People coming.  People going.  It doesn’t matter what direction you are heading staff seem to always greet you with a beaming smile.

I can easily imagine myself ordering a coffee and settling down here to read the local paper and indulge in a spot of people watching.

 The Sheraton Imperial's glamorous foyer

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Within minutes, and after a painless check-in process, my bags are collected and I am whisked off to my room.

The low-key elegance extends to my spacious deluxe room which has a neutral palette of taupe, splashed with a touch of mandarin. The highlight for me is the view from my floor-to-ceiling window which showcases downtown Kuala Lumpur in all its glory.

The neutral tones extend into the bathroom with its fawn marble floors and walls.  A large bath looked very inviting and the separate shower was a great size for my ever-expanding girth.

 

The hotel’s general manager Stephan Sieberg says this property introduced 5-star values to Kuala Lumpur.

“We are committed to staying for the long time here as we have a partnership in the hotel,’’ he said.

“I would call it the classy hotel style, or the grand style hotel.  We definitely don’t want to compete with the modern buildings with skyscrapers.  The history, it (the Sheraton) introduced the five-star service to the country.’’

 Right outside, Kuala Lumpur's Golden Triangle with nightlife, shopping and sightseeing awaits

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Deciding To Eat In Or Out Proves Difficult

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Being in the Golden Triangle means that the hotel is well placed if you wish to visit the busy shopping area of Bukit Bintang or go wild in Jalan P. Ramlee – the party street – where the action spills out on to the street around dawn.

There’s plenty of nearby dining options.  Finding food, good food, in Kuala Lumpur is never a problem.

With the day wearing on though I opted to dine in the hotel. Essences is the signature restaurant which offers diners local Malay cuisine along with international dishes from India, China, Thailand, Mexico, Japan and Europe.

You can even watch your dinner being prepared by a chef at one of the nine live-cooking stations.

 

The Celestial Court, with its jaw-dropping entry, offers a delicious array of Cantonese delights and this a la carte restaurant is lauded as one of Kuala Lumpur’s best dining options.

The restaurant is also a very popular spot on Sunday morning for the ‘All You Can Eat’ dim sum brunch.

Rather surprisingly the Sheraton Imperial is most famous though for its authentic Italian dining which can be found at the hotel’s longest running restaurant Villa Danieli.  “The hotel introduced a lot of international cuisine too, like our Villa Danieli Restaurant, which is still one of the most famous restaurants in KL,” Sieberg said.

The split level restaurant sets the scene with an open kitchen featuring a custom-made wood-fired pizza oven.  The restaurant is great for an intimate casual dinner and the pizza is delicious.

If it’s just a snack you are looking for then you won’t go past Toastina Café and Bar.  This cosy little cafe is perfect for a quick bit on the run.

 You may be tempted to stay in bed and order room service, but you'd be missing out on the Sheraton's incredible restaurants

Well stocked up on pizza and a take-away coffee in hand, I head to the pool for a bit of relaxation.  This pleasant terrace has a nice vibe to it and I happily spend a few hours floating in the pool and chilling on a sun lounger.

Sieberg has been in KL for about 18 months, but he has already fallen in love with the city.

“It’s not like any other city I know,’’ he said.  “It’s a melting pot. You have a very traditional Malaysian setup with a very modern set up. The combination of Chinese, Malaysian and Indian culture is not comparable to any other city in the world.

All images by Luke Wheatley and Alastair Emmett

Brian Crisp

I've has been a journalist for more than 30 years and travelled to more than 60 countries. When I travel I love getting lost because that's when you find the true heart of a city. I love country music, but as yet I haven't made it to Nashville. Perhaps next year!