Long weekends in Singapore are equivalent to getaways to Indonesia, Thailand or Malaysia. Singaporeans love relaxing at the resorts of their neighbours. We decided to follow suit and spent the Good Friday weekend at Nongsa Point Marina Resort in Batam.
First of all some information on Batam: Batam is a small island in Indonesia’s Riau archipelago in the South China Sea. A short boat ride from Singapore, it’s a free trade zone with multiple busy ports, known for its beaches, raucous nightlife and malls offering duty-free shopping. Upscale resorts in the shoreline areas of Nongsa and Waterfront City offer golf courses and water sports including windsurfing, parasailing and jet skiing. Make sure you book in advance, since its a popular weekend getaway destination amongst Singaporeans and the better resorts get booked pretty early.
We were not keen on any water sports or shopping. We just wanted to relax and unwind and Nongsa Point Marina looked like a good option. We booked a return ferry trip through Batam Fast and we are quite happy with their service. The ferries are in good condition and they let us change our timings for the return journey without any hassle. Both ferries, however, did not depart on the scheduled time and were about 30 minutes late. We did not mind that anyway!
The ferries to Nongsa depart from Tanah Merah Ferry terminal and the resort provides free pick and drop from the Nongsa ferry terminal. Upon arrival, my first impression was that the island was quite green and hilly. We had to wait a bit for our turn to board the shuttle bus to arrive as there were a lot of guests.
We were travelling with my husband’s parents and hence booked a two bedroom chalet. At 550 SGD for two nights it was really good value for money. The hotel is away from Batam city centre and hence quite tranquil. Perfect for relaxing!
The chalet was like a 2-bedroom apartment with a living room, TV, kitchen equipped with microwave and fridge, a dining table, a master bedroom and another bedroom with balcony on the upper floor. We liked our chalet and the views from the upper bedroom balcony.
The food at the resort is average and the menu is also limited. Breakfast is decent with some good options- particularly liked their potato wedges. We had all our meals in the resort but would recommend not having the cocktails there. The pool area is quite nice. The pool is big and clean and towels and lounge chairs are provided. Loved relaxing in the pool during the day time!
The harbour in front of the resort forms a pretty picture but the coastline is not particularly pretty. For water sports, you can check with the front desk and they will direct you to their sister hotel Turi Beach resort located 5 minutes from the property. For spa, they will offer you two options- one at Turi resort and another at WellAsih. Turi’s spa is quite expensive so we decided to try out WellAsih and it turned out to be very nice. Its located closer to the city centre, they provide free pickup and drop from the resort. We went for the 90 minute Indonesian massage which was super relaxing (in-laws liked it too!). The staff was very friendly and polite. Highly recommended!
Overall we felt the resort was good value for money and a nice place for unwinding. We did feel that the resort was understaffed to handle the long weekend crowd. The chalet furniture is a bit dated. Also, it would have been better if hand towels were provided. During breakfast buffet, a lady who was the resort owner’s friend had occupied a big table just for her husband and son and didn’t let anyone occupy the empty seats on the table saying ‘Its reserved for a meeting’. There was no meeting of course. We didn’t like this and I am sure a lot of other guests didn’t appreciate this either.
Nonetheless, a good option if you are planning a trip to Batam!
This post was originally published on 'My Travel Treasures'.