Raya celebration with Desaru Coast


I read the invitation from Desaru Coast closely and saw that this year, their Raya celebration will be hosted at the Desaru Coast Convention Centre, a change of venue from previous Raya celebrations that were held at The Els Club Desaru Coast.


Guests at the Hari Raya celebration
with Desaru Coast

This sent me on a flashback to July 2019, the last time I was at the Desaru Coast Convention Centre for the grand opening of Desaru Coast by His Majesty the Sultan of Johor that coincided with an exciting three-day Ombak Festival.


It was my pleasure to accept the Raya invite and looked forward to heading back to Desaru Coast again to renew my acquaintance with friends I hoped to meet again.


Long before Desaru was rebranded as Desaru Coast, my family and I have enjoyed countless weekends by the beach as well as in the pool at a corporate-owned private retreat here.


My relationship with Desaru continued since 2016 when Desaru Coast was developed as an integrated holiday destination that covers over 3,900 acres of land with 17km of beachfront.


Live music entertainment provided by this band

Curated with a portfolio of globally renowned hotels, resorts, golf courses and conference centre, it was no surprise when Desaru Coast was named one of TIME Magazine’s World’s Greatest Places of 2021, in the third annual edition of the list, published on 20 July 2021.


Later that same year, I had a pleasant surprise when I heard from Gowri Mohanadas, General Manager of Group Corporate Communications at Destination Resorts and Hotels (DRH) who invited me to share My Johor Stories “live” with their guests.

[DRH was formerly known as Themed Attractions Resorts & Hotels.]


This was the first of my Storytelling by the Sea experiences in Desaru Coast held at the Westin Desaru Coast with the team from Options, The Edge.


One for the album: Guests from 
Rumah Anak-Anak Yatim Kebajikan Al-Husna
Then in October 2023, I had the pleasure to meet with German-speaking journalists who represented leading newspapers and magazines in Austria, Switzerland and Germany, hosted at Anantara Desaru Coast Resort & Villas.


Recently in March 2024, when Anantara Desaru Coast hosted the stay of media representatives who are based in Dubai, it was again my pleasure to share My Johor Stories with these respected writers who have earned a reputation for themselves.


I am thrilled that Desaru Coast understands that people liked to stay in a place with a story because the trilogy of My Johor Stories books are available for the guests’ reading pleasure in the super luxurious One&Only Desaru Coast, the Anantara Desaru Coast Resort & Villas and the Westin Desaru Coast.


Laksa Johor, a Raya specialty

On the day of their Raya celebration, I arrived at the Desaru Coast Convention Centre in good time to meet with many friends, in fact, the entire management team of DRH and Desaru Coast were present.


It was my pleasure to be introduced to the new CEO of Desaru Coast, Khairul Ariffin Ibrahim, who – I was quickly informed – is a “local” from Lukut, Kota Tinggi.


It was also good to meet with Karina Ridzuan, Director of Business Services in DRH, and to renew our acquaintance since we first met at the Persada International Convention Centre in March 2018 for the Desaru Coast recruitment drive.


This Raya celebration was made more meaningful as it was shared with friends, partners, collaborators and youngsters from the Rumah Anak-Anak Yatim Kebajikan Al-Husna, a welfare home in Bandar Penawar.


Johor favourite, Soto Ayam with Nasi Impit

For the youngsters, Raya would not be complete without duit Raya so the senior management kindly presented each child with their personal contribution of this festive gift.


In the banquet hall, a band provided live music entertainment while we enjoyed the food and chit-chatting with each other.


When someone asked me what I have been up to lately, I could not resist sharing with them about my Heritage Walks and the exciting experience with the Tan family.


It all started with a stay at the One&Only Desaru Coast where they connected with me after reading Book Two, My Johor Stories 2: Interesting Places and Inspirational People, which ultimately led me to help them write and publish a book tribute as a legacy for their late father.


I truly appreciate the partnership with Desaru Coast who encouraged the One&Only Desaru Coast to place My Johor Stories in their rooms and villas, when each book was published since 2017.


For more info on Desaru Coast, visit website: www.desarucoast.com and Facebook page for Desaru Coast Malaysia

No comments:

Post a Comment