I really find myself enjoying the short getaways to Johor Bahru in Malaysia because there are many hidden finds and places with good local food to try out. Need I say that the price is too good to be true too?
However, due the long queues at JB Checkpoint, we ended up spending the whole of our afternoon queueing to get across the border. Thus, doing a day-trip to JB isn’t very ideal. It is actually better to stay there for one night. Besides, accommodation is equally affordable. My only qualm is the lack of well-maintained and clean modern hotels.
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I got the best hotel deal on Agoda
But this time, I managed to come across this new swanky hotel under Fraser Hospitality called Capri by Frasers. I snapped up a really good ideal on Agoda and only paid SGD58 per night for a twin sharing room.
All thanks to Agoda’s best price guarantee policy which allows me to get an even better deal when the price drops. You just had to do a screenshot of the webpage with all the relevant details and submit it through Agoda’s website. Once it is approved, they will match the lowest price quoted and then refund you the rest.
But you have to follow the rules and regulations carefully. I got rejected several times initially but once I understood where the problem lies, they agreed to match the price.
Capri by Frasers Hotel, Johor Bahru
So worth the deal
I was euphoric when I reached the hotel because everything – from the interior to services – is exactly what we’d expected. In Singapore, one night at a similar 4-star-hotel will cost about $200. In comparison, the costs per night here at Capri by Frasers in Johor Bahru is about four times cheaper.
Location: Near but not so near
Based on Google maps, Capri by Fraser hotel is literally right across the road from Johor Bahru Checkpoint. But the thing is the road that separates the checkpoint and hotel is rather complex and difficult to cross. To make things worse, it is not easy to find your way out and walk out of the checkpoint towards the hotel. Thus, most would recommend taking a Grab from JB checkpoint or CitySquare JB to the hotel. It costs about RM5 per ride. And it takes about 5 minutes for us to get there. Until they have constructed some kind of pedestrian crossing, it is best just to ‘Grab’ your way there.
Because the deal is too good to be true, there are already many Singaporeans and tourists who knew about this. Thus, I have read reviews about the slow check-in at 3pm and how some guests have to wait til 4 pm for their rooms to be ready.
Since we knew that the rooms would not be ready yet and there might be a queue, we checked-in around 4 pm. There were about 5 to 8 people queuing at the counter, waiting to check-in. In particular, there was this family of three who were rather unhappy about their late check-in. Let’s just say that the way they treated the hotel staff is rather disrespectful. After all, this isn’t a 5-star luxurious hotel. So, we shouldn’t expect much either.
We waited for about 15 minutes or so before we got our room card. Do note you are required to pay the Tourism tax of RM10 per person to the hotel as well.
Capri by Fraser is an ideal hotel for business people; there is a club lounge on Level 40 as well as several meeting and function rooms on Level 40 and Level 41. There is even a 24-hr gym, pool and laundrette.
Our Studio Deluxe Twin Room (38 Sqm)
The configuration of the rooms on that floor is weird. We have to walk through another door before we can find our room. But I am not complaining because the room looks super new, fresh and clean. After all, this is a newly-launched hotel which opens sometime back in June this year.
We stayed in the most basic room type – studio deluxe twin. To me, this room looks rather superior. It is relatively quite spacious for a twin room too.
Our not-so-scenic v
Our room was facing JB checkpoint. It was nothing too spectacular about our view but we were just really impressed with our room and the bathroom, in particular.
This twin bedroom has a mini well-equipped kitchen which has a microwave oven, dishes and utensils. The room also features a door-less wardrobe which gives a more spacious and modern look.
There are many channels to watch and you can even find more information about their room services and facilities on their TV.
Need a little space to get some work done? There’s a cosy area at this corner of the room where you can get some work done.
Leave Your Plugs and chargers At Home
I love it when hotel rooms have USB port so that I do not have to bring my charge or plugs. All I need is just a USB wire and that will do.
The Stylish Bathroom
We were both amazed by the touch-button embedded in the mirror. It switches on the lights lining the sides and edges of the mirror. When the mirror lights are on, the mirror looks as if it is glowing. Cool, huh?
Off to the shower area
The hotel provides bath amenities from Malin+Goetz, a luxurious skincare and bath brand. Their products incorporates the use of natural ingredients and thus are probably more gentle on the skin. It is such a treat to be using Malin+Goetz shampoo and bath products because they smell so good!
Small Modern Kitchen
You probably can really cook in this small kitchen area but you can microwave pre-cooked food or enjoy your take-away meal right in the room.
Beyond the room
Hi-Tea at Delite
Need a quick cuppa or muffin? You can have a quite bite here at their cafe called Delite. They offer a range of pastries, hot food as well as beverages.
A regular doughnut costs about RM9+. It is a little costlier than the regular bakeries in Malaysia but still relatively affordable.
As long as you have your room card with you, you can enter this gym anytime at your convenience. It houses many fitness equipments including weights, treadmills and even exercise mats.
I could imagine myself working out a good sweat here but too bad I did not bring my sport shoes along. Besides, we came to JB for one sole purpose – to eat.
Spin and Play Room (Laundrette)
If you are staying longer here in JB, you’d be glad to know that there are self-service washing machines here. The laundrette is located on the same floor as the gym.
No coins? There’s a coin exchange machine right there.
While waiting for your clothes to spin dry in the washing machine or dryer, you can kill time by playing some games on their PlayStation console.
There’s also a really nice pool to dip in but it is pretty small and it oversees the checkpoint.
Complimentary Shuttle Buses
Wait…what? Free shuttle buses to CitySquare mall and Mid Valley megamall? These are the additional perks for staying at Capri by Fraser. However, there are no shuttle buses ferrying hotel guests back to the hotel. Currently, the shuttle buses only dropped off guests at the following locations: CIQ Drop-off point, Galleria Kotaraya, KSL mall, Mid Valley megamall and RF mall.
Capri by Fraser Shuttle Bus Route
Sadly, there aren’t any food centres or shops that are within walking distance. But we found this Prata shop called Restoran Afrida which sells really Indian bread like Prata and Thosai for less than a buck! Each
We went there for supper and I’ll glad that Sam dragged me along. It is like a 15 to 20 minutes walk from our hotel.
My Verdict on Capri by Fraser
Overall, it is a pleasant stay at Capri by Fraser. It’s the best hotel in JB so far in terms of value. This hotel residence is comparable to any reputable 4-star hotels in Singapore. I would think that Capri by Fraser is comparable to Hotel Jen Tanglin by Shangri-La hotels in Singapore. We would probably stay a couple more nights here if we can afford to spend more time in JB.