Review: Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur

We stayed at the Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur for two nights at the start of our trip to Malaysia.

The hotel opened in May 2018, and is situated in Kuala Lumpur’s cosmopolitan Bangsar district. The hotel happens to be the first Alila property in Malaysia, and one of the few city hotels under the Alila brand.

Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur – Booking

Kuala Lumpur is a city of very cheap luxury hotels, so I had a pretty hard time deciding between the attractive rates of many great properties, such as St. Regis, W, JW Marriott, and Four Seasons, to name a few. However, in the end, I couldn’t resist the rate of only $90 (CAD) per night at the Alila Bangsar.

I was more than happy to give another Alila property a visit after some delightful stays thus far, and I also wanted to take the opportunity to re-qualify for Hyatt Globalist status this year by earning another two qualifying nights.

I paid the Hyatt Privé rate of $90 per night through a Privé advisor, which was slightly higher than the lowest member rate.

I was curious to try out the Hyatt Privé benefits, but uFortunately, there weren’t all too many benefits to speak of, as this turns out to be one of the few Hyatt Privé properties around the world that doesn’t offer a US$100 property credit.

Keep in mind that you can also redeem Hyatt points here for a nightly rate of just 5,000 World of Hyatt points as a Category 1 property. This is a pretty great deal if you have Hyatt points to burn; however, considering the cheap cash rate, it’s still arguably a better deal to pay cash as per our Points Valuations of 1.9 cents per point (CAD).

Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur – Location

Nestled in the heart of Bangsar, the Alila’s immediate area is relatively residential, but we still enjoyed walking through it and getting a taste of the local life.

The property is conveniently linked to the Bangsar LRT metro station via a pedestrian walkway. The city’s main railway hub, Kuala Lumpur Sentral, is just one stop away and also within walking distance.

Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur – Entrance from Bangsar LRT station

Other modes of transportation include the Grab App, which is South East Asia’s version of Uber, and can be a very cheap and practical option for getting around to more distant places.

Popular nearby attractions include the National Mosque of Malaysia, around a five-minute ride from the hotel, and Butterfly Park, just a seven-minute ride away. Both points of interest are also within walking distance if you’d prefer to explore on foot.

More distant attractions include Bukit Bitang, known for its upscale malls and luxury fashion boutiques, which is 15 minutes from the hotel via the metro or a car ride.

Meanwhile, the Petronas Twin Towers are the world’s tallest twin skyscrapers, and are a 20-minute journey from the hotel via the metro or Grab.

Heading out to the famous Batu Caves on the city’s northern edge will also be a 20-minute Grab ride, which is exactly the path we took on our last day in town.

Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur – Outside

Overall, the location was fine for our needs, but the residential neighborhood might not be the right fit for everyone.

If you’re looking to stay more centrally to Kuala Lumpur’s best sights, you’ll find two major clusters of chain hotels.

The first is near KL Sentral just north of the hotel, and includes properties such as St. Regis and the Hilton. Meanwhile, near the Petronas Twin Towers, you’ll find the JW Marriott, Four Seasons, Sheraton, and other properties.

Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur – Check-in

We arrived late on the night of our check-in date, nearing 1am, following our back-to-back flights in ANA business class.

Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur – Ground floor elevators

The lobby is located on the 41st floor, and I immediately took note of the beautiful design, which was very much in keeping with my previous Alila stays.

Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur – 41st floor lobby

Alila is a very design-forward brand that elevates natural elements with a clean, contemporary style.

Lush trees have been placed around the lobby interiors against a minimalistic white background, while the entire hotel building is housed in a jet-black exterior facade.

Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur – Check-in desks

During the daytime, the Alila’s lobby very much felt like a sanctuary in the sky in the middle of the bustling city. The natural elements incorporated into the architecture created the feeling of being in an urban oasis.

Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur – Lobby lounge
Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur – Lobby lounge

Check-in was processed swiftly at the front desk, and our Hyatt Privé rate and my Hyatt Globalist status were acknowledged.

The associate also informed us we had been proactively upgraded to the Bangsar Suite, which was greatly appreciated, so no “suite-talking” was required this time.

While the lobby is on the 41st floor, the guest rooms are situated just below on the 35th to 40th floors. We took our keys and headed down a separate set of escalators to the 35th floor.

I will note that the Alila’s elevators were rather slow, which meant that it was a bit of a trek each time we came in and out of the property, since there are two sets of elevators you need to take to get to your room.

Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur – Bangsar Suite

The Alila Bangsar’s guest rooms are designed as an ultra-modern take on the traditional village hut. Stepping into Room 3524, we immediately appreciated the unique interior style.

Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur – Hallway
Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur – Room 3524

Dark timber gridlines and glass are incorporated throughout the suite, providing a dramatic contrast to the soft palette of balau wood walls.

Furthermore, subtle brass elements are mixed into the lighting fixtures and the furnishing tops, elevating the room’s overall look.

Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur – Bangsar Suite living room

As you enter the Bangsar Suite, a hallway leads to the living room. The space features a modern three-seater sofa, coffee table, and a two-person dining table near the window.

Next to the couch is a large glass wall panel, and on the opposite side is a small white leather chair.

Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur – Bangsar Suite living room
Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur – Bangsar Suite sofa
Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur – Bangsar Suite dining table

A wall in the middle of the room separates the living area from the bedroom, along with two sliding doors. There’s a small bench, a flat-screen TV, and a pantry with bottled water, a kettle, and tea and coffee packets.

Note that the Alila Bangsar doesn’t offer in-room coffee machines; instead, there’s a communal espresso machine on each floor near the elevators. That’s both a disappointing omission, and a somewhat creative way to make up for it.

Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur – Bangsar Suite pantry

On the other side of the wall, the bedroom features a king-sized bed with a beautiful balau wood headboard. On each side of the bed are two brass side tables, and on the right-hand side of the bed is a desk facing the windows.

Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur – Bangsar Suite bedroom
Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur – Bangsar Suite bed
Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur – Bangsar Suite desk

The bathroom is accessible via the foyer and the living room, and is exceptionally spacious. Immediately upon entry, you’ll find a bench with a full-length mirror on the right and bronze shelving on the left.

Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur – Bathroom
Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur – Bangsar Suite bathroom shelving

The shower is large and fully enclosed within a glass box, and the vanity features a concrete stoned sink that sits below two large LED mirrors. The toilet has its own space, separated by a door from the rest of the bathroom.

I thought the shower was really nice, and I loved the fully enclosed glass walls of the shower. Furthermore, the water pressure was excellent, and this was a great way to relax after a long day in town in the Malaysian heat.

Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur – Bangsar Suite shower

The polished brass details and Edison lightbulbs hanging between the mirrors created a modern and moody atmosphere.

Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur – Bangsar Suite vanity
Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur – Bangsar Suite toilet

Overall, we were very impressed by the Bangsar Suite, and I could hardly believe that I had booked this entire residence for $90/night along with a Globalist upgrade.

The only real drawback was the absence of a coffee machine, meaning that I had to slip into the hallway every morning to use the espresso machines near the elevators.

Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur – Elevator sitting area
Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur – Espresso machine

Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur – Breakfast

Breakfast is hosted in the Botanica + Co restaurant on the ground floor. As a Hyatt Globalist member, you’re entitled to pick one of the four set-breakfast options: Western, Malaysian, Indian, or Chinese.

Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur – Botanica + Co entrance
Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur – Botanica + Co
Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur – Botanica + Co

Over the course of our two-night stay, we sampled one of each. The flavors were distinctive and strong; moreover, there was a decent assortment of many types of food with each breakfast set, and we certainly appreciated the variety.

For me personally, the highlight was the Malaysian nasi lemak and the Chinese congee.

Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur – Malaysian breakfast
Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur – Chinese breakfast

The Western and Indian options are quite fulsome as well, each offering a wide range of tasty breakfast bites from their respective cuisines.

Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur – Western breakfast
Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur – Indian breakfast

Coffee and juice were available on a self-serve basis at each breakfast sitting.

Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur – Breakfast

Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur – Other Facilities

The outdoor pool at Alila Bangsar is spectacular. Enclosed within a multi-story atrium on the 40th floor, the pool connects to the 41st floor from a theatrical grand outdoor staircase.

Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur – Outdoor pool
Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur – Outdoor pool
Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur – Outdoor pool

The atmosphere is serene, and the boundary between interior and exterior blurs with the large windows and views overlooking the Kuala Lumpur skyline.

Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur – Skyline view
Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur – Skyline view

Looking down at the liveliness and action of the city was invigorating after such a long time away from Southeast Asia. We absolutely loved taking a dip here in the afternoon, after a busy morning in town and before evening activities, as a means to relax and nurse our jet lag.

The air-conditioned gym is located on the same floor.

Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur – Fitness center
Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur – Fitness center

The space is large and well-equipped, with a variety of cardio equipment, some exercise machines, and free weights.

Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur – Fitness center
Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur – Fitness center

Lastly, in addition to Botanica + Co on the ground floor, enter is another dining option at the Alila Bangsar. The restaurant is located on the 41st floor and takes a casual approach to French dining with a communal menu, and is considered one of Kuala Lumpur’s top dining venues.

Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur–Entier

The hotel also offers a few curated experiences for guests, such as guided tours of nearby markets, cooking classes, and other local experiences.

Conclusion

The Alila Bangsar Kuala Lumpur is a cheap property, whether with points or cash, and yet still delivers the full-service hotel experience with excellent elite treatment and a delicious breakfast in the mornings. You really can’t go wrong staying here for well under $100 per night.

Overall, I loved the relaxing, nature-focused, and design-forward atmosphere of the hotel. This made for a unique experience here at the Alila, quite different from some of the other brands I typically stay at like the St. Regis, W, and Ritz-Carlton.

On future visits to Kuala Lumpur, I may be tempted into giving those luxury properties a try, but I’d certainly love to return to the “sanctuary in the sky” here at the Alila as well.

What’s more, I’m very much looking forward to checking out more Alila properties in the future, and my growing fondness for the Alila brand is turning out to be one of the main reasons that I’m tempted to remain loyal to Hyatt this year .

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