Ever heard of a hotel that will charge you extra for a check-in after you have paid for the room? Well, it happens here at the ‘First World Hotel’ in Genting Highlands Malaysia. I would say, having booked a room in literally the world’s largest hotel having 7351 rooms, you must be prepared for some surprises. There are many things about this hotel that you need to know before you book a room here, starting with what type of room to book.
After reading this article in full, you may feel like you already know everything that you need to know about First World Hotel, and that is my goal here too. But when you get there, something in the First World Hotel will still surprise you, and I can’t help you with that.
Let us start our virtual tour of First World Hotel.
First World Hotel Genting Highlands
First World Hotel is one among a few hotels constructed for tourists in this destination, and as such this is not the only option for accommodation in Genting Highlands. But it is the cheapest, most of the time, provided you have booked at the right time.
Check-in and check-out times of First World Hotel are 3:00pm and 11:00am. Early check-in is possible (after 11:00am) with an extra charge of 5 MYR per room. Check-in can be done for free using one of the check-in kiosks as shown in the picture above. To start, scan your passport on the scanner located on the upper left corner. The system is supposed to be able to read your passport and locate your reservation in which case your reservation will be displayed on the screen. You get the options of bed types, room view, etc. Some of these options are chargeable.
All foreign tourists checking in to any hotel in Malaysia have to pay a Tourism Tax of 10 MYR per room per night. As such, one needs to pay this tax at this hotel also.
The final amount including Tourism Tax to be paid is displayed on the kiosk screen. You pay using a card or cash (cash works better, just insert the MYR notes in to the slot). After receiving your payment, the kiosk will dispense your room key. In case you face a problem at the kiosk, try another kiosk or look for a staff member around to get help.
Counter check-in for “kiosk-eligible” bookings is chargeable at 15 MYR per room irrespective of the number of nights. “Kiosk-eligible” means that you must first try a kiosk. In case there is an error, you may go to a counter. The staff at the counter will tell you if your booking is “kiosk-eligible” and whether they will charge you extra for the check-in.
Carrying Luggage To Your Room
You are expected to haul your own luggage to the room or they can do it for 20 MYR per bag. You can rent a luggage trolley by paying a refundable deposit of 20 MYR for one trolley.
Choosing A Room View
I strongly recommend choosing a valley or mountain view room. That costs just 5 MYR extra per room, and is totally worth it. There are two reasons why you should avoid a view like the one in the above picture. For one, it looks bad. The second and the more important reason is that there is no air-conditioning in the rooms. There are ceiling fans though and those work well only if you leave the room windows open. In an inner room, even after leaving the window open, the room remains hot and the heavy comforter on the bed will make your sleep difficult. A mountain/valley view room will be cooler in comparison and you will have more privacy while keeping your windows open.
Choosing A Room Type
I have stayed in a Standard Room (Tower 1 and 2) and in a Y5 Deluxe Room in Tower 3. There are three important differences in these two room types. Standard Rooms do not have Wi-Fi and electric kettle to make tea/coffee, etc. And there is no fridge. Tower 3, in which the rooms names start with Y5, have free Wi-Fi, electric kettle along with daily tea/coffee supplies, and a small fridge. Additionally, you get two small water bottles every day. A Y5 Deluxe Room will probably cost 10-15% more than a Standard Room. If the Wi-Fi and the electric kettle matter to you, do book a Y5 Deluxe Room. I have decided never to stay in a Standard Room again. That also means I have to book sufficiently in advance because sometimes, all the rooms at this hotel get sold out.
Available Room Types
This is the list of room types available in First World Hotel:
- Standard Room (Double or Twin Bed)
- Deluxe Room (Old or Y5)
- Triple Room (Old or Y5)
- Superior Deluxe Room
- World Club Room
You may read more about these room types on this link:
How Much To Pay
The pricing of rooms at First World Hotel is dynamic, which means that they will charge more or less according to the demand for their rooms. Some online booking sites (suggestion – trip.com) may offer you to the best possible deal on any given day but just know that the price may decrease or increase after you have made your booking. I have seen the lowest online price for a Standard Room at 5 USD and the highest at 50 USD. It’s madness because a Standard Room in First World Hotel is not worth more than 20 USD. If you are searching online and see prices under 20 USD, you may book because from that level, the prices may not fall much. Do some online research before booking and if possible, adjust your travel dates to get a lower price. Friday and Saturday nights are the most crowded in Genting Highlands and therefore, for those days any hotel room will cost more. All online bookings for this hotel are non-refundable.
You may read online about how bad the the Standard Rooms in First World Hotel are. But I found that many of the complaints that I had read online were not true in the rooms that I got. The room was not very big but it was of adequate size. There were sliding doors on the toilet & shower area. The bed and the linen were very clean. The carpet on the floor was clean too. I did not find any problem with the cleanliness in either the Standard or the Y5 Deluxe room. I certainly did not find any bed bugs.
Amenities In Standard Room
As you can see in the picture above, my Standard Room had a small writing desk next to the bed, with a hotel telephone on it. A hair-dryer was on a stand next to the mirror. To the side of this table, there was a luggage rack and above it a rod with hangers to hang my clothes. In a Y5 Deluxe Room, you will have a kettle on the table and a fridge under the luggage rack. On the wall facing the bed, there was a small, 20-inch, LCD TV that showed very few channels in not so good quality. I could find only 1 or 2 English language channels. In my Standard Room, the charging point with an international socket was there on the wall near the writing desk. In Y5 Deluxe Room, there were sockets near the bed also. A digital locker is there in all the rooms.
Toilet and shower areas are separate in both Standard and Y5 Deluxe Rooms. In the Standard or Y5 Deluxe Rooms I stayed in, there were sliding doors for the toilet and shower area. Next to the sink and in the shower, a soap dispenser was provided. Everyday, two very thin but clean towels were provided.
There is no free drinking water in Standard Rooms. Even in Y5 Deluxe Rooms, there are only two small water bottles and to get extra water, one needs to go out in the passageway and find one of those water kiosks. The kiosks dispense free hot and cold water at any time. The quality of the water is not similar to bottled water. Therefore, if you are used to drinking only R.O. water, you may not like the taste of the kiosk water. Still, it can be used for making coffee.
The rooms are cleaned everyday. You may stick around and wait for the housekeeping staff to arrive if you want your bed linen changed on a particular day. Otherwise, I guess they do not change the bed sheets everyday.
Long Walk To The Lifts
It’s a very big hotel and the walk between the lifts and your room can be quite long. I did not mind walking but if it matters to you, you may choose a room close to the lift by paying 5 MYR extra per room.
Food & Beverage
The hotel does not have any room service for food but some restaurants located in Sky Avenue (Level 4) or Genting Grand Complex may provide room service for food. You may try using the hotel phone in the room to call the operator and ask about food in the room. If you run out of tea/coffee supplies for the electric kettle, extra pouches of the same can be bought from vending machines in the lobby area. There are restaurants called “Lobby Cafe” and some others too in the lobby area. There is no vegetarian food, however, in those restaurants. In case you are looking for vegetarian food, this article of mine can really help: Vegetarian Restaurants in Genting Highlands
For breakfast buffet, you may try any of the restaurants on the premises – Coffee Terrace, The Food Factory, or Rajawali Coffee House.
You may store your luggage free of charge before check-in by getting a wait-list token from the reception or after check-out by telling your room number. This storage counter is in the lobby area next to check-in counters and is open 24 hours a day.
The staff at this information counter may be able to help you find your way around or get some other information. I tried asking about vegetarian food and they did not know anything. The counter is in the lobby opposite check-in counters.
Free Shuttle Bus To Chin Swee Caves Temple
The hotel provides a free shuttle bus to Chin Swee Caves Temple and back from 9:00am to 9:00pm. Please find out more about how to use the shuttle bus at the information counter.
With the outdoor theme park closed at the time of writing this article, all the action in Genting Highlands is in the Sky Avenue which is in the same complex. Whether you are looking for the Sky Casino, indoor theme park, shopping mall, Ripley’s, or food, just head to Sky Avenue. Many good restaurants are on Level 4 of Sky Avenue. In the lobby you will find signboards pointing to Sky Avenue. When you arrive at Genting Highlands via Awana Skyway, you are on Level 4 of Sky Avenue.
For check-out you do not need to stand in any queue. Instead, just use any of these self check-out kiosks. Insert your key card in the card reader, and wait. A moment later, the display on the kiosk will confirm that your check-out is complete.
- Genting Highlands Casino Guide
- Where To Change Money in Genting Highlands
- Vegetarian Restaurants in Genting Highlands
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