Four Seasons Kuala Lumpur
The city’s shiny new Four Seasons property wins fans on account of its location alone. Situated smack in the middle of the Golden Triangle and next door to the iconic Petronas Twin Towers, the hotel is already making headlines as Asia’s new opening of the moment.
There’s a total of 1,820 sqm of meetings space led by a grand ballroom with mammoth crystal chandeliers and expendable walls. A good selling point here is the vast pre-event cocktail space outside the ballroom: this space – accompanied by a bar station – lets in plenty of natural light and is ideal for smaller exhibitions, launches, and awards nights.
In tune with the Four Seasons brand, the service is attentive and meticulous, and the global recognition program means that staff are likely to remember details such as delegates’ pillow or temperature preferences – great for C-suite executives.
Also the talk of the town and an Instagram darling is the in-house Bar Trigona, a sleek space with Peranakan finishes that’s bound to attract young business travellers over a customised cocktail or two. All drinks are crafted with local, sustainable ingredients.
Adjacent to the hotel is Shoppes by Four Seasons, a shopping centre that holds retail brand Robinsons, gourmet food stores, and beauty parlours. A good catch here is Malaysia Boleh, a vibrant indoor food court with cheap local food; even if still new, the space buzzes at lunchtime with white-collar workers from nearby office towers who huddle over steaming noodles.
W Kuala Lumpur
Malaysia welcomes its first W property located diagonally across from the Petronas Twin Towers in the company of some of the city’s best hotels. While the hotel will only have 150 rooms, each will sport stylish, contemporary aesthetics with local quirks.
Brands that are more likely to gear towards unique events can play with 1,500 sqm of events space including a 1,000-sqm Great Room that can fit up to 700 and has a 11m-high LED wall. The in-house events team will be happy to customise signature mood music and scents to ensure each event is catered to the brand.
There’s also the option of the Presidential Suite or Extreme Wow Suite on the 23rd floor that can host up to 100 and has an in-room bar, and a private terrace with a swimming pool. And it’s not a trip to W without a cheeky drink at its renowned WooBar. This one is set against the panoramic view of the Towers and features a resident deejay.
Banyan Tree Kuala Lumpur
Adding to the slew of new properties in Kuala Lumpur is Banyan Tree, situated in the Bukit Bintang district directly opposite high-end shopping mall Pavilion Kuala Lumpur and just minutes from the CBD. Though its key count of 55 rooms and suites is on the small side for meeting and event planners, the sky-high venues mean there is still plenty to rejoice about.
The undoubted highlight will be Vertigo, the hotel’s 58th-floor rooftop bar with panoramic views across the city. It can host events for up to 150 people, with complete buy-outs available from Sunday through Wednesday with a minimum spend of RM60,000 (US$15,200). The menu offers Southeast Asian tapas, while mixologists can create personalised drinks or base a beverage menu for groups around a theme.
The chic poolside area on the 53rd floor is available for receptions of 30 people, again with those incredible views.
Straying out of the city centre is always a good idea when in Kuala Lumpur. Bangsar – a lively middle class neighbourhood – is home to a slew of trendy cafés and bars, small boutiques touting local designs, and leafy pavements for idle strolling.
Here comes Alila Bangsar, the most exciting opening this year in the area. The property’s interior is reflective of the young, urban vibe of the suburb; think clean, contemporary lines, lush foliage against raw brick walls and concrete, and plenty of natural light.
With 3,500sqm of meetings space, rooms can be divided into various configurations with a maximum capacity of 80. The beautifully decked out Botanica + Co can also fit in 150 – great for small brand launches or if you want to tick off those Instagram goals.
The vastness of events space here may not match the chain brands in the city, but Alila is an interesting choice for clients who want a fresh outlook for intimate events, and those who want to take a breather from the city frenzy. If you must head into the city, there's a shaded walkway to the Bangsar LRT station which whizzes you to the heart of Kuala Lumpur in 15 minutes.
citizenM Kuala Lumpur
The citizenM brand touts itself as being “affordable luxury” for the traveller looking for a “new type of travel experience”. Mainly catering to the needs of millennials, this new “travel experience” was born from the frustrations of modern travellers having to pay for things they don’t want at traditional hotel chains. Hence, the brand – primarily operating in Europe – prioritises things that “matter” including contemporary design, a central location, friendly tech and “nice, soft pillows”.
In November, Kuala Lumpur will be the second city in Asia – after Taipei – to welcome a citizenM property. Located in the shopping and entertainment district of Bukit Bintang, the hotel will feature a living room-inspired lobby complete with Swiss furniture, hanging art, and iMacs with high-speed WiFi.
Following the brand’s promise of friendly tech, the check-in process will take merely one minute via touchscreen terminals.
Movenpick Hotel and Convention Centre KLIA
Judging from its name, this new hotel will largely serve as a conference space close to the Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) and the neighbouring KLIA2. Because of its location away from the city centre, it has the luxury of hosting one of the country’s largest in-house convention centres.
Delegates can choose from the 2,390-sqm convention hall, the 780-sqm circular hall, and the Mentari ballroom that can host 2,800 in a theatre setting or 1,500 for banquets. There are also seven discussion rooms and 10 seminar rooms up for hire.
While the Sepang area is not particularly known for its vibrant offerings, its proximity to the airport is a big sell what with delegates sometimes flying in and out on the same day. For perspective, the journey by road from the airport hub to the Kuala Lumpur city centre takes approximately 60 minutes.