Looking for a relaxed weekend getaway from Singapore that’s also vegan friendly? This Langkawi island resort is perfect for peaceful relaxation!
With three weeks of school holidays approaching and no time to catch our breath due to all the year-end madness, we really needed a relaxing family trip, stat! And because we packed the weeks prior to our school break with Christmas shopping and fa-la-lahing, we found ourselves involved in a manic TripAdvisor search for last-minute weekend travel from Singapore that was also eco-conscious and vegan-friendly (blame the hubs for that one). That’s when all signs pointed toward Langkawi. With good fortune and guidance from the experts at The Luxe Nomad, we were able to find availability at one of the best boutique hotels on the island, Temple Tree at Bon Ton.
Conveniently located near the airport and Pantai Cenang Beach
After a quick 10-minute taxi ride from the airport, we turned down a dirt driveway toward Temple Tree, a collection of antique kampong-style family homes converted to villas, each representing a different aspect of Malaysian culture. Met with refreshing welcome drinks, we were escorted to our villa, Chinese House 2, a two-storey building from the state of Johor, restored to its original splendour, yet with modern conveniences. This was unlike any other villa we had stayed in before – a unique hotel concept containing thoughtful detail in the restored villa architecture, and enough greenery and open space to feel like you’ve stepped back in time.
Admittedly, our trip was a quick pack-up-and-go; we hadn’t done much research on what to do in Langkawi, as a family or with kids. So, when we arrived at teensy Langkawi International Airport, we were wide open to possibilities. Honestly, a few lie-ins and some pool time would have settled us just fine, but in this case, the destination became the holiday. We only left Temple Tree on one occasion over the three-day weekend from Singapore.
Designed as a peaceful getaway on an island paradise, with a philanthropic feel-good factor
Billed as a luxe villa enclave of antique buildings of Chinese, Malay, Indian and Eurasian origin, each villa is unique in its 70-to-100-year-old history. Temple Tree gets its name from the small temple built around a lone tree on the property, whose presence is still maintained by caring staff to create a special atmosphere for the entire property.
Set at the foot of an old coconut plantation, Temple Tree is an ideal getaway from your manic city life. Close your eyes, and you’ll be met with sweet smells of island greenery, and a serene quietness that beckons visitors to lounge by the pool all day, or read a book on the wraparound veranda. Bliss!
What makes the island resort extra special is resort owner Narelle’s philanthropic passion project, Langkawi Animal Shelter and Sanctuary Foundation, an animal sanctuary annexed next to both Temple Tree and sister property, Bon Ton Resort. Stays at Temple Tree and Bon Ton Resort, and meals at Nam Restaurant, enable a percentage of profits toward LASSie. What’s more – every day you’re greeted by the many cats that live on the properties, and guests are also encouraged to help walk the dogs at the shelter to help rehabilitate them, a bonus for children who love animals!
Amazing fusion restaurant, a foodie haven that’s vegan-friendly too!
Worried that we hadn’t notified Temple Tree of my husband’s [vegan] dietary requirements ahead of our arrival, we were concerned that he’d have to settle for mere salads during the entire stay. We were delighted to know Nam Restaurant (located at sister boutique hotel Bon Ton Resort, which is annexed to the property) is considered the best on the island. The chefs made each meal with special care, sometimes even learning new recipes and trying them out on my husband, who claims he had one of the most amazing chocolate cakes ever!
Need to know:
We booked our wonderful family holiday to Langkawi with helpful travel specialists, TheLuxeNomad.
Arriving to Temple Tree from Langkawi International Airport:
Arranging a taxi on arrival is the easiest! Go to the kiosk right after you exit the baggage claim, let them know where you’re headed to, and they’ll issue a receipt upon payment. Then head out to the taxi queue outside the exit doors, and you’re on your way!
Want to venture outside of Temple Tree?
Not that you’ll want to leave the resort (it has everything you need), but if the family is itching to discover more on Langkawi Island, you can easily arrange a rental car from Temple Tree staff. We took a day trip to Langkawi SkyCab Cable Car and Langkawi SkyBridge – the longest curved skybridge in the world! Tip: Opt for the VIP service to avoid the long queues and to secure a travel guide!
Temple Tree Resort, Jalan Pantai Cenang Lot 1047 Langkawi, Pantai Cenang, 07000 Pantai Cenang, Kedah, Malaysia, www.templetree.com.my