Saturday 4 January 2014

$1.1 billion hotel, $1 bus fare

We decided to go for afternoon tea at the fanciest hotel in the whole of Brunei.
It is a 523 roomed extravaganza that was commissioned by Prince Jefri as lodging for guests of the royal family.  However, it was quickly turned into a hotel to try and recoup some of the incredible building cost.
It is about 20 kilometres from downtown BSB and is right on a beautiful piece of coastline. Inside it is filled with Italian marble, huge chandeliers and very attentive staff.
We caught a bus there that cost $1 each, and for the last half of the journey we were the only passengers. The driver knew our destination and turned into the long landscaped hotel grounds and drove us right up to the imposing entrance.
We thought this was very convenient and a bit surprising, but it was only when we left and asked the concierge where the bus stop was that we found out that the driver had gone off the route to take us there.
The concierge immediately took charge and he telephoned the bus company and asked that the next bus be redirected to pick us up at the main door. When he arrived it was the same guy who had dropped us off.
We couldn't believe we were getting into our own personal transport right among the golf buggy hotel shuttles, taxis and expensive guest cars.
Ps, the tea was great as well and very filling, well worth the $13 each.

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