For work, I had to stay to Sudara Beach Resort in Tok Bali, about 45 minutes from Kota Bharu, the main town of Kelantan yesterday. It was a work visit, and I was a bit grumpy as I was only able to be there starting from 11pm. Haha... well, I have to put the blame on hubby's shoulder as he was the one who wanted to go to KL first for Homedec 2011 in KLCC, but we are not able to buy the hood we wanted, cz apparently the brand we wanted only take orders first but only able to deliver the good after a week.
And then a very long drive over winding country roads from Kuala Lumpur via Bentong / Kuala Lipis / Gua Musang before we are able to reach Kota Bharu. We started off at around 12 pm.. and only able to reack KB around 8.. wow! Thurthfully I never use this road before but have to say now, I have the deepest respect to my Kelantanese friends working in KL and driving back to their village especially during Hari Raya to Kelantan, no wonder during Eid, when I saw their status, sometimes up to 16 hours will be spend on the road due to the numbers of vehicle, bad roads (during my unbusy trip, even us cannot overtake other vehicles as it was too dangerous)..
Anyway.. have to say, Sudara is a bit neglected in my opinion. Perhaps the 10 years of its first opened, and the nearby sea make it rusted more quickly. The room rate is reasonable in my opinion, around RM170 for seaview to RM125 for garden view.
Having said that, I would say it still have potential. It has this wonderful sea nearby its chalets with wonderful view of nearby Susu Dara Island.. I was informed that this is how Sudara derived its name from. The beach is nice and clean with remnents of long seashell abound, I think that because it is a private beach, that's why there's soo many of this shells around. There are also a pool area which my sons truly enjoyed.. and which I am soooo very jealous of them as I had to work early that morning! Grrrrrrr...
Anyway, we were given glimpses of what Sudara aim to improved in the next few years. For instant, they are aiming to build a mini water theme park there which is expected to complete sometime next year 2012. If it is done, Kelantan would be able to welcome its first theme park! It would also build new hotel rooms to cater for the growing demand.. apparently Sudara enjoys 100% occupancy rate during weekends! No wonder.
We were also given explainantion on mud balls. During the first night I arrived, I had to admit that the stench of swampy area besides the resort had put me off. Afterwards, I was informed that it was before a beautiful river but due to drainage projects was cut off by an irrigation canal making the water stagnant and smelly. During the ceremony, mudballs was thrown in signifying Sudara's commitment to turn around the swampy river into healthy beautiful stream.
I think if all these plans are done, Sudara would be among the top three best hotels in Kelantan after Renaissance Kota Bharu and Grand Riverview Kota Bharu, and definitely the first for Beach Resort in Kelantan. So.. if you want to go the Kelantan to enjoy both the shopping and the beach, why not try Sudara Beach for your next visit.