Thursday, August 4, 2011

Desaru Triathlon 2011: Hotels, Resorts, Where to Stay?

Obviously the best place to stay would be the Lotus Desaru Beach Resort because it is the official hotel / venue for the Desaru Pengerang Long Distance Triathlon 24 - 25 September 2011. That saves travelling time and avoids the hassle of finding parking on race day, when there are more important things to think about, e.g., 'how to swim in a washing machine?' and 'did I update my will?'
IMPORTANT: when booking at Lotus, make sure you ask for the special rates /package for triathletes / the triathlon. These are: 
3 Bedroom Apartment Suite (max 6 pax) : RM650.00 nett per night
2 Bedroom Apartment Suite (max 4 pax) : RM430.00 nett per night
1 Bedroom Apartment Suite (max 2 pax) : RM250.00 nett per night

Rates include daily buffet breakfast and welcome drink, PLUS free Water Park Entrance so it's a great deal for triathletes and supporters. (For Lotus address, reservation number, T&C, click HERE.)
If you don't ask for the special rates, you'll be quoted an expensive rate of RM430 (full board) or RM394 (breakfast only) for a 1 bedroom apt. Although the RM430 comes with all meals, I'd rather drive 30 minutes to Sg Rengit to chow down on seafood!
Other good options 10 minutes from the race venue transition are:
  • Pulai Desaru Beach Resort (also '4 star', and quieter). It's $198++ (government servant rate yay!) or $330++ (standard rate) for 1 room if you call in (07-822 2222). Online rate is $240++ per night at Agoda (limited time only - thanks for the tip Cyn!)
  • Desaru Penawar Inn, a brand spanking new budget hotel just 2 km from Lotus. (Call En Shamsudin at 019-7190102. If you can't reach him, try the head office 07-8221964). Weekend rates start at $98++ (single), $108++ (twin sharing or queen), $158++ (queen + single). Includes breakfast. Non-smoking. This hotel is managed by Koperasi Pelaburan Kejora and you would be banking into Bank Islam account number 01135010000404. Thanks Tajudin M. for the info. It's GOLD! 
If you're desperate (and brave), you could try Desaru Damai Beach Resort, a 1 star budget dig, that has received shockingly bad reviews on Tripadvisor (read reviews here).
NOTE: Desaru Golden Beach Hotel, a previous race venue, is CLOSED for renovations until 2014 (I just spoke with them)
I booked Pulai Desaru at the government rate for 23-25 September and was told that I can cancel a week before with no penalty. Then I decided to cancel Pulai and have booked with Penawar Inn so I can splurge more on seafood!  I may wait till Sept 5 to register for the triathlon (that's the last day to sign up or max 900 participants). For more info and to register for the Desaru Tri, visit Triathlon Malaysia

Check back once in a while as I will be updating this post with new hotels!
See you at Desaru!

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xo Gracie

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