Hard Rock Hotel Penang
Hard Rock Hotel Penang

Hard Rock Hotel Penang

Our first day in Georgetown had been quite different from what I had imagined of Malaysia.  Today we are  off to Batu Ferringhi, the beach coast and holiday strip of Penang Island. I am preparing for touristy, but I have heard they have delicious food at night markets and beautiful beaches, so I think it’s time to find the beauty.

Penang Beaches

Penang Beaches

We hailed a cab for our trip and said goodbye to the Deluxious Hotel. The further from Georgetown we ventured the prettier the scenery became.  If this was a holiday with Mr GG and I alone, we would have hired  motor bikes and toured around looking for all the hidden gems Malaysia has to offer. With the children in tow bikes are a little too difficult, so we made the most of the cab ride and stared out the window.  Even from high up on the cliffs we could look down and see pretty bays with white sand beaches.  It was at least a 30 minute cab ride which saw us winding our way along the Malaysian coastline, seeing glimpses of “the beach” type scenery, deep green jungle meeting beautiful blue clear seas, with rocky outcrop periodically dotting the coastline.  I know its 30 something degrees outside at 10.00am, but the cab is cool and the driver is happy and friendly.  We watch the poorer areas disappear, giving way to tourist developments, and high rises with budgets that don’t seem to quite fit their surroundings.

Hard Rock Hotel Penang

Hard Rock Hotel Penang

Eventually we arrived at the Hardrock Hotel Penang, our home for the night. I chose this hotel because I felt by this stage in our holiday the children would be in need of another set of water slides, a pool, and other kids to play with. I had hit the nail on the head.

Hard Rock Hotel Penang Waterslides

Hard Rock Hotel Penang Waterslides

Within moments of our arrival the children were playing and chatting with kids from all different countries and had made a beeline for the pool area. Something that hadn’t previously occurred to me when I lamented that this may be touristy is that Malaysia is the play area of many different countries.  I was pleased to see that although there were language barriers, the children were playing with children from so many different countries that I would not be able to name them all.  They were exposed to so many cultural differences, and just took it in there stride, for example at least one quarter of swimmers were wearing a full burka. So although the area is touristy was still an amazing cultural experience.

Hard Rock Hotel Pool Area

Hard Rock Hotel Pool Area

Whilst the children played I checked us in to our interconnecting rooms. Mr GG and I have the King suite and the children are sharing the adjoining room with single beds.  Little Anais is on a rollaway be for the night.  The rooms are gorgeous! So much attention to detail.

Hard Rock Hotel Bedroom

Hard Rock Hotel Bedroom

In our bathroom there are just three sliding panels which separated the bathroom from the bedroom. One panel is a mirror and two a frosted glass with etched art images.

Hard Rock Hotel Penang Bathroom

Hard Rock Hotel Penang Bathroom

From our room I could look over the pool area, to the sea, it was such a lovely view and I felt instantly relaxed.

Hard Rock Penang Twin Bedroom

Hard Rock Penang Twin Bedroom

Through out the hotel there were bit and pieces of rock and roll memorabilia.  It was amazing to find that most of the “stars” displayed on the walls were completely unknown to even my teenager, much less the little children. This Beetles picture was a mystery to all the kids.

Hard Rock Hotel Penang Beatles

Hard Rock Hotel Penang Beatles

On our floor of the hotel there were framed photographs of Fleetwood Mac performing, and images of Stevie Nicks.  Walking back to our room Lachlan asked if one of the Stevie Nicks images was me. Lol! He thought I was a superstar before he was born!

Hard Rock Cafe Penang Stevie Nics

Hard Rock Cafe Penang Stevie Nicks

Back downstairs with the family the heat and humidity was indescribable,  Mr GG and I decided to made use of “The Love Shack Bar.” Before you get any ideas… The Love Shack is The Hard Rock Hotels swim up bar. It may have only been 11.00am but it was so hot I was already in a swimsuit, in the pool, and totally parched.

The Love Shack Swim Up Bar

The Love Shack Swim Up Bar

I found the heat and the humidity were stifling; unless I was actually submerged in water I could feel myself charring. Lucky for me I had chosen an area of shaded water to cool down in… the fact that it was right next to the swim up bar was merely a coincidence… not excellent planning on my part, shade and refreshments… a definite win.

Hard Rock Hotel Entertainment

Hard Rock Hotel Entertainment

We literally spent the whole day in the pool.  The children were constantly flying down the water slides and enjoying the set activities provided by the staff at the pool.  Each hour or so a new activity would commence, there were hula hoop competition, water polo and a dance competitions.  Meanwhile in the background paragliders went by in the ocean, jet skiers dropped by and periodically husband would have a quick dip in the sea. It was all very easy, and very civilised.

Hard Rock Hotel Penang Elvis

Hard Rock Hotel Penang Elvis

We met a Canadian couple currently living in Perth who voiced a sentiment which I find very true. When holidaying with children a child friendly destination ensures that parents can actually relax and enjoy the holiday too. The Hard Rock Hotel is definitely child friendly.  There are staff walking around dressed in rock and roll costumes giving out watermelon to guests by the pool, they organise activities for the children, and everyone has a lovely friendly nature.

For those that wanting to party,  there is plenty of entertainment scheduled each evening in the bars.

Hard Rock Penang Mojito

Hard Rock Penang Mojito

By the end of the afternoon I had been in the pool all day and I was feeling a little like a prune, husband said to me, “Would you like another Mojito?” I returned,” honey, if I have another, I will turn into a Mojito!” So naturally he ordered another drink and we lazed for another hour or so by the pool. Bliss!

Hard Rock Penang Signage

Hard Rock Penang Signage

Eventually we needed to summon the children so they could dress for dinner.  We wanted to try some of the delicious Penang street food infamous in the region, so we set out on a walk down the main road.  There were so many restaurants along the way to choose from but we wanted to look at the night markets and order from the street stalls.

Penang Temple

A Temple at Sunset in Penang

We walked for about 15 minutes until we reached a large under cover area where tables and chairs were surrounded by carts and food stalls. Each table had a numbers so we began the task of choosing food and quoting the table number to vendors.  One by one our food choices were cooked and brought to us for payment.

Sate Stick over coals in Penange

Sate Stick over coals in Penang

Between the five of us we amassed quite a collection of food.

The little ones decided on a pizza, which was surprisingly delicious.  This would not have been my first choice for them, but given they had been trying so many different types of foods lately I decided it wouldn’t hurt for them to have something familiar.

Penang Satay Sticks

Penang Satay Sticks

Tylor was front and centre at the satay sticks stand, he stood and watched them being cooked over coals and an open flame.  They were served with a generous amount of sate sauce.  For research purposes I consumed two of the sticks while he wasn’t paying attention, they were deliciously smoky. I could have happily eaten more but I was sure the boy would protest. 10 sate sticks cost a grand total of RM$5 which is equivalent to $A2.00.

Malaysian Noodles

Malaysian Noodles

The teenager also ordered a serve of noodles with chicken and fried egg for RM$8 or $A3.20 from the stall next door.

After doing a lap around the food court I decided I really wanted noodles too.  I unwittingly chose the same noodle dish as Tylor.  The picture looked so delicious, and it was described as spicy so I just couldn’t resist.  Even though we had a “food duplication” I could not have been happier with my choice.  The noodles were the best of I have ever had, they were so deliciously soft and spicy.  A true taste sensation!

Penang Spring Rolls

Penang Spring Rolls

Knowing the noodles alone would not be enough I also ordered Tylor and myself a handmade spring roll each.  After watching them being made I just couldn’t resist trying one.  These were delicious as only deep fried food can be, crispy skinned and full of flavoursome crunchy vegetables in the middle.  The spring rolls were served with a spicy sauce and the two spring rolls were RM$6 or $A2.40.

So the hungry teenager had been fed for a grand total of $6.80, and I had my fill for $4.40.

Penang Steamed Bun

Penang Steamed Bun

Hubby had helped the children with their pizza and was looking for a little more to finish the meal.  He tried my noodles and agreed that he had never had better and then helped devour my spring roll.  After that it was time for him to brave the stalls and choose his own dish.

Steamed Pork Bun Inside

Steamed Pork Bun Inside

As expected Mr GG found some huge steamed buns that he couldn’t go past.  We had been seeing these oversize steamed buns everywhere, and I was looking forward to breaking into one and tasting the goodness.  As expected the bun was deliciously sweet and light, it had a tasty savoury meat and boiled egg filling.  We used the bread to mop up the remaining sate and chilli sauces from the other dishes which added another whole level of deliciousness.

Night Market Penang

Night Market Penang

Very satisfied our weary family walked back to the hotel.  We weaved our way through the stands of cheap clothing, watches, sunglasses and other brik a brak which lined the street from the food market to our accommodation. The children wanted a ride in the trickshaw but it really wasn’t very far and we would have need three to get us home!

Penang Tricksahw

Penang Tricksahw

Upon return we had to have the obligatory photo in front of the Hard Rock Cafe guitar before retiring for the evening.

Hard Rock Hotel Guitar Penang

Hard Rock Hotel Guitar Penang

Where ever we go breakfast seems to be included in the rate. So we made our way down to the buffet. The children are getting really good at choosing from the foreign foods, so much so that I don’t know how they will adjust when we return home and offer cereal!

Penang Carved Fruit

Penang Carved Fruit

The buffet breakfast had all the regular breakfast fare with a few interesting additions. I am loving my curry breakfasts, today I had the choice between a beef curry gravy and a vegetable curry. They were accompanied by roti cania which was made on the spot.  I decided to sample a little of both curries.

Hard Rock Penang Breakfast

Hard Rock Penang Breakfast

In a steaming hot box I noticed  three different colored buns.  Not knowing what would be inside I decided to try one of each flavour. The outside was the same deliciously sweet light bread but inside the buns were various sweet fillings. I am still unsure what these fillings were but the green tasted like Kaya so I think it may have been a sweet Pandan filling and the brown filling tasted a lot like palm sugar. The pink is still a mystery. Whilst they were nice I was preferring a savoury flavor for breakfast and was hoping the buns would be filled with curry.

Penang Steamed Breakfast Bun

Penang steamed bun

Hubby had been craving a laksa, he found the buffet breakfast included a laksa station.  Mr GG added toppings like fish balls, spices, noodles and broth to a bowl and then sat down to a bowl of piping hot noodle soup.

Penang Fish Laksa

Penang Fish Laksa

After the first breakfast course the children noticed the live waffle stand and the accompanying toppings. Just as any child would be, my children thought they were in sugar heaven.

Live Waffle Station

Live Waffle Station

They made concoctions from the add ins that would turn any adults stomach. Eventually they fell into a sugar coma and we were able to leave the buffet.

Live Waffle Station Toppings

Live Waffle Station Toppings

It was only a one night stay at the Hard Rock Cafe Penang before our next adventure.

Today we are off to Thailand.

Hard Rock Penang Logo

Hard Rock Penang

Hard Rock Hotel

Batu Ferringhi Beach

11100, Penang Malaysia

Gourmet Getaways

About Julie

Comments

  1. This hotel looks everyone friendly! I bet the waterslides make children everywhere smile 🙂

  2. I was staying just down the road from here on my recent trip to Malaysia at the Rasa Sayang. I loved being so close to the night markets as well!

  3. Like Hard Rock group…that hotel pool looks really cool!

  4. I’m so excited to be going back to Asia in August for hubby’s birthday! My one aim is to eat street food three times a day 😀 BTW what are the numbers next to our blogs on the right? 🙂

  5. This certainly looks like a fun family place to stay. I adore those breakfasts too, laksa is wonderful first thing in the morning!

  6. What an exciting day. I cant wait to see what you get up to in Thailand

  7. I’ve never stayed at a Hard Rock before. I’ve eaten at quite a few. I get my American fix there. 🙂 All that food sure looked good!

  8. Perfect spot for an overnight with the kids…mine would enjoy it, too. But, ugh, it’s HOT! I’d have to stay submerged 🙂

  9. Oh I love the Hard Rock Cafe, I’ve stayed in them a few times. The pool looks like such fun and I’m sure it was good for you and the hubby to relax too. The street vendors would be where I’d be hanging out…lol!! Although, that pool bar is pretty tempting too 🙂 Glad you are enjoying your trip!

  10. Wow, that must quite a sight seeing someone swimming in a full burqa! I just saw there is something out there called a ‘burqini’- maybe that will be the new rage! I’ve always wanted to go to Langkawi in Malaysia.

  11. My brother and his family lived in Malaysia for quite a few years. Now I’m sorry I never visited! The Hard Rock in Malaysia certainly seems a lot more fun than the one in Las Vegas. How great to have a hotel that caters well to both children and grownups =)

    Great to hear your kids were playing with children from other countries. I do firmly believe in the value of opening the eyes of kids (and adults!) to cultures other than their own. I think exposure to other cultures fosters compassion and understanding.

    Anyway, the food! Oh, my goodness. The meat buns (niku-man in Japanese) and noodle dishes remind me of Tokyo…And the satay does look superb…I could go on but I’ll just say thank you for allowing your readers to vicariously enjoy!

    Last and not least, is there a way to subscribe so I don’t miss a post?

  12. Sitting here, freezing my ass off, wishing I was sweating it out in Malaysia! Never thought to go there, since I’m usually travelling with family. Doubt I can convince them away from the usual places we go either, but I can always try!

  13. I’m so jealous!!! Hard Rock hotel looks like an awesome place to stay in like a dream really 🙂 I wish I could get on a plane and go to Malaysia and definitely stay in an amazing hotel like this ~ I’m really getting sick of Melbourne weather the rain, cold and gloomy >_<

  14. It does look really fun. We were thiiiis close to staying at the Hard Rock Hotel in Chicago last weekend. That would have been fun if we had similar posts in different regions up. 🙂

    I love your pictures!

  15. I totally agree with your friend that in a kid friendly hotel the parents get to relax 🙂 I love Malaysian food and each and every one you tried looks delicious and making my mouth water 🙂

  16. What a wonderful family time and I’m sure your kids will remember their time at the Hard Rock Hotel for a very long time to come. Amazing how you can feed a family so very cheaply in Malaysia. To think what I spend taking our kids out for dinner! Not sure I could handle curry for breakfast but yes, a better option than the sugar stand xx

  17. I haven’t been to Penang in years! Good to see that it’s still a hot spot for tourist 🙂 My entire family originated from this tiny island!

  18. I visited Penang last year, and fell in love with the city.
    Missing it and really want to go back 🙁

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