My 12-year-old daughter had just finished her first major national exam in Singapore, and goodness knows the pressure was quite a burden throughout the year. So when it was finally over, and as she stood on the cusp of her teenage years—I saw faint signs of teenage angst emerging in my little tween!—I thought it would be something special go away and spend some serious quality bonding time with her. Away from malls, the TV and the computer.
We’ve always enjoyed beach holidays, and since we haven’t been to Langkawi in years, it was a good getaway option, being so nearby. We like our beaches luxe, too, so Four Seasons Resort Langkawi, Malaysia was perfect.
Spread over 48 hectares and with just 92 rooms, Four Seasons Langkawi was a tranquil spot for chilling out, where, despite a full house, you never felt a crowd as there is so much room for the guests. As luxurious as it was, it’s a family resort as well, with enough facilities to keep my daughter’s tween energy engaged and my more grown-up needs met.
We stayed in a gorgeous beach villa (No. 16) perched on the sand’s edge, so huge that she could do cartwheels across the length of the living room. The generously sized veranda tempted hours of lounging. The garden around the villa, perched just at the edge of the sand, had my daughter running around exploring, poking and playing outdoors.
We were ardent beachcombers. Every morning, she’d be up before me, nagging me to go out early and scour the broad, freshly raked stretches of white sand looking for shells. Indeed, this turned out one of the best beaches we have come across in southeast Asia for beachcombing. The more unique (and sought-after) conch shells and spirals were a dime a dozen. And with the relatively calm waters, we also found a few large beauties intact. Whenever it was time to head back, there was always another shell to pick, a suspicious knob in the sand to poke at, a section of beach we had overlooked. The late afternoon called for another foray and my daughter’s pile of treasures grew every day. As they sat drying on the veranda, we chilled over drinks brought by room service: icy watermelon juice for her; white wine for me.
Another evening, we had a private beach barbecue just for us two. You often see these set-ups in luxury resorts marketed at honeymooning couples, but it also made for a superbly indulgent dinner which took mother-daughter bonding time to a totally different level. Also noteworthy was how Four Seasons Langkawi encourages families to experience these beach barbecues as they call them, too.
Our reservation was at 7.30 pm. A quiet walk across the darkened beach brought us to a table elaborately set up over Persian rugs. Set in a fluttering cabaña, torches flamed and the waves lapped a short distance away. Another similar cabaña down the beach revealed another family—parents with three young children—doing the same.
At ours, we dined on salads galore, lobster, prawns and beef, all barbecued for us by a private chef under the night sky. It was nice to have all the time in the world to talk, joke, share dreams and enjoy each other’s company—without computers and the television to distract us. For me, it was wonderful to appreciate my child as the individual she was; without the rush and tumble of our hectic daily lives back home. The highlight of the evening no doubt was dessert, served round a little bonfire. Sitting on deck chairs, we toasted marshmallows, and sandwiched them in graham crackers with chocolate. We both agreed that this was by far a high point of the holiday, and one of our best shared experiences.
Read Sim Ee Waun’s Langkawi post on her e-zine, Simply Fabulicious.
Read more about Langkawi in Four Seasons Magazine.
Sim Ee Waun runs e-zine Simply Fabulicious out of Singapore and Hong Kong with Elaine Yeoh. All about about luxe living in Asia, Simply Fabulicious is aimed at women in their 30s and up, covering food, travel, shopping and events. Ee Waun has worked as a food and travel writer for the last 23 years for Epicure, Appetite and BBC Good Food. She is also editor for parenting magazine Young Families, as well as Singapore Correspondent for Malaysia-based Flavours. Ee Waun lives in Singapore with her 12-year-old daughter.
View all posts from Sim Ee
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