Four Points by Sheraton opens in Desaru

With the annual monsoon upon us, the weather was wet and drizzly in Johor Baru in the morning of November 18, the date for the Grand Opening of the all-new Four Points by Sheraton Desaru.


Facade of Four Points by Sheraton Desaru
located in Desaru Utama, Johor

After a leisurely afternoon drive on the Senai-Desaru Expressway, I parked at the open carpark in the forecourt of the hotel in Desaru Utama and was elated to see how cloudy skies had turned to clear blue with the sun shining through.


I was deliberately early to take in the sights before the arrival of guests and VIPs with Guest-of-Honour, Johor Menteri Besar, Dato’ Haji Hasni Mohammad, to officiate the opening.


From the façade of the hotel building, I saw that every one of the 311 rooms in this hotel has a balcony for guests to enjoy the spectacular sunrise and sunset views.


In the front porch, I spotted the ubiquitous string of red firecrackers hung from the ceiling, all ready to be set off as part of the opening ceremony in a typically Malaysian tradition of business openings to usher in blessings and good fortune.


As I admired the contemporary décor for the reception counters where staff were helping guests to check-in, natural light flooded into the lobby through the floor-to-ceiling glass front walls.


From the lobby, a wide staircase led upstairs that (later I discovered) led to the Wave Grand Ballrooom, where the Grand Opening event would be held, and a smaller event hall dubbed, the Breeze Junior Ballroom.


Guests at the Reception, checking into the hotel

Just behind the Reception counter, The Mesh Bar & Lounge was furnished with comfortable armchairs and low tables, and next to it was The Mesh Restaurant.


My eyes, however, were riveted to opposite the restaurant, to admire the outdoor swimming pools for adult and kids.


While I was thus occupied, I was met and welcomed by members of the Marketing & Communications team and introduced to the hotel General Manager, Maverick Loh.


It was a pleasure to meet someone who shared the same surname and I pointed out in jest that our ancestors probably came from the same province in China…


Prior to his appointment at the Four Points by Sheraton Desaru, Maverick held the positions of Executive Assistant Manager and Acting General Manager at the Sheraton Imperial Kuala Lumpur.


Most recently, he was Hotel Manager at the Sheraton Dhaka where he implemented and drove the respective hotel’s re-opening and pre-opening strategies, in all aspects of operations.


“I am delighted to be leading the opening team of Four Points by Sheraton Desaru and am fortunate to partner with an owning company that has invested in delivering this great product,” said Maverick about the hotel’s partnership with the SKS Group.


“We aim to ensure that the Four Points by Sheraton Desaru is the perfect destination for leisure and corporate travellers, confident that the hotel and its offerings will reinvigorate tourism in Johor and deliver nothing short of an outstanding yet affordable level of hospitality,” he added.


To cater to family and group leisure travels in the New Normal, the hotel not only provides swimming pools but also facilities like games rooms and a gym for a fun-filled staycation here.


The Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony at the front
porch of Four Points by Sheraton Desaru

Observing my interest in the outdoor pools, Maverick pointed out that their swimming pools were interestingly, filled with salt-induced water.


Another unique feature in this hotel were their Family Rooms – 14 of them – each equipped with a teepee (play tent) for the kids to enjoy the thrill of outdoor camping under the stars, safely within the room.


This special effect of a star-studded ceiling in the dark, created by a galaxy projector, aims to further enhance the kids’ stay experience in the tent.


Alternatively, the hotel also has connecting rooms that link Deluxe King and Twin rooms for families and groups to enjoy their stay together.


The spacious rooms come with complimentary high-speed WiFi, private balconies, the brand’s signature Comfort Bed and coffee-machines to brew your own cuppa.


Meanwhile the buzz of activity in the nearby restaurant was getting louder and I turned to observe guest arrivals escorted by concierge team members, heading towards the elevators.


Maverick was pleased to share with me about their innovative menu in The Mesh, designed to match the Malaysian taste but with an international twist.


While the hotel has its own herb and vegetable garden cultivated on a nearby hill, the chefs are also working with the local community and suppliers to serve the freshest produce.


Among the specialties featured in The Mesh are the must-try dishes of Assam Pedas Oxtail and their 24-hour Slow-Braised Beef Short-Ribs.


The very thought of these dishes set my mind thinking about its taste and texture and when Maverick went on to mention about their specialty Cheesecake inspired by a local mung-bean delicacy, Tau Sar Piah, I could not wait to taste it.


Maverick was clearly proud of the presence of the only four-star international corporate based hotel for leisure and business travellers in Desaru, how it would complement the other accommodation choices here and support local attractions like nearby Desaru Fruit Farm and the sandy beaches.


Hotel GM, Maverick Loh, escorting Guest of
Honour, Johor Menteri Besar, into the ballroom

The hotel provides complimentary shuttle bus to the public beach in a schedule of every 30 minutes between 7am and 10.15am and in the evening from 4.30pm.


It was good to learn that Four Points by Sheraton Desaru aims to present guests with an authentic sense of the local along with genuine, friendly service for guests to unwind, relax and enjoy.


The announcement that the Guest of Honour was due to arrive very soon caused a flurry of activity in the lobby so Maverick and his management team took their places to welcome the arrival of the Johor MB and start of the official opening ceremony.


In the lobby, I joined my friends from the Johor Chapter of the Malaysian Association of Hotels to witness the arrival of the Johor MB and the ceremony.


In the tradition of business openings, the Ribbon-Cutting ceremony was accompanied by the sound of dramatic drums for an auspicious Lion Dance, followed by the lighting of those fire-crackers that set off deafening explosions that augured well for good fortune and prosperity.


While the VIPs were escorted upstairs to the ballroom, I trekked up that staircase from the lobby that led to the foyer for the ballrooms.


The event was held in the
Wave Grand Ballroom

It felt surprisingly good to witness this auspicious event especially after months of lockdowns due to the global pandemic because this marked a fresh start not only for the hotel industry as a whole, but also for the reopening of the economy and travel nationwide.


In his speech at the Grand Opening Ceremony, Maverick thanked their business partners, the SKS Group, and shared various details about the hotel facilities, some of which he already told me when we met earlier.


When he spoke about his early morning views from the room balcony and the beauty of morning mists, my imagination took flight as I visualized the mesmerizing scene…


But my ears pricked up when he mentioned that The Mesh features a Coffee Bar that serves artisan coffee and a coffee-based cocktail and that Four Points by Sheraton Desaru offers Best Brews, which was part of the Four Points’ signature craft beer programme that serves local craft beer on tap.


“We are very excited to welcome guests to Four Points by Sheraton Desaru for the first time,” said Maverick.


When I heard him say this, I made a mental note to include local craft beer and that coffee-cocktail tasting into my list of must-try items during my stay experience with the hotel – soon – I hope.


“We look forward to creating experiences that showcase the destination’s rich culture-heritage while providing travellers with everything they need to rest, relax and stay connected,” he added.


The Johor Menteri Besaru presenting his 
speech at the Grand Opening Ceremony

After he congratulated the hotel on its opening, Johor Menteri Besar, Dato’ Haji Hasni encouraged the industry players to work together to make Johor a most sought-after destination.


He said one of the ways to boost tourism here was by organizing impactful international events in the coming year.


With reference to the announcement by the Federal Government about the Vaccinated Travel Lane (VTL) by air between Changi Airport in Singapore and Kuala Lumpur International Airport in Malaysia, scheduled to start on November 29, he was excited to share another piece of good news.


He was pleased to announce that his call for the VTL by air to be extended to land travel to be opened on the same date, was also confirmed for November 29.


We know it was a unique situation between Singapore and Johor, and this was indeed very good news for families who had stayed separated in the neighbouring countries since the borders between Singapore and Malaysia were closed from March 18, 2020.


Many practical details were yet to be ironed out before the VTL by air and land came into effect on Nov 29 but this announcement of such good news certainly buoyed us up as the MB closed his speech with an encouraging comment that the year ahead, 2022 will be a year of optimism and growth.


Four Points by Sheraton Desaru is located at Jalan Kempas 2, Taman Desaru Utama, 8190 Bandar Penawar, Johor. For reservations, Tel: +607 – 832 8888.


Marriot Bonvoy members will earn bonus points upon booking a stay at Four Points by Sheraton Desaru.


For more info, visit website: or stay updated with the latest info posted on the hotel’s official pages in Facebook and Instagram. 

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