Langkawi's Rebak Island Gets A Rebrand From Taj to Vivanta By Taj
When a decent hotel that was good quality and excellent value rebrands as an überluxury property, is that something to celebrate, or commiserate? That’s the question we’re pondering with the news that Taj has just rebranded its Rebak Island Resort as a Vivanta by Taj property.
Taj hotels are already really nice. Vivanta by Taj – of which this is the 29th – are super duper nice. And this one certainly has potential – it’s set on its own 390-acre island 4km off Langkawi proper with its own mini beach. The journey to the Langkawi ‘mainland’, on the hotel’s private launch, is a languid 15 minutes.
Our problem is that it feels like really posh hotels are everywhere in Malaysia (the Datai is just round the corner on the mainland, after all), and we don’t really need another one. In fact, when HotelChatter stayed before, we loved it for its “luxury on a budget” feel: it had the amenities of a seriously top hotel (private island, excellent service) but kept prices affordable by not being ridiculously luxurious. Rooms were relatively simple, and the resort was reasonably priced. We’d be sad to see that go.
The good news is that it doesn’t seem to have gone – at least for now. In 2009, when HC stayed, rates started at $104. A room this weekend will set you back MYR400, or $124, including breakfast, internet and airport transfers. That’s still pretty unbelievable value.
By the looks of the reviews on Tripadvisor, they haven’t redone the rooms yet. We’re waiting to hear whether Taj will be updating them, and will update this story when they do. We would hope the answer is a yes, as this is not super duper Vivanta standard as is. But you can expect a price hike if they do.*
In the meantime, enjoy your private island while you can still afford it.
UPDATE: Taj confirms there has been no renovation (rooms were last renovated in 2012). However, the rebranding has seen the rates increased by $30 a night. Let's hope they stick there.
[Photo: VIvanta By Taj]