Sunday, February 17, 2013

Refreshed At Refreshing Spring

Four days sitting under the tutelage of a wise Christian leader would have been worth the trip but I was blessed beyond measure at the training conducted by Rev. Wong Kim Kong.

The dirt road leading to the resort
Selina and I in the carriage drawn by a tractor that took us into the resort
Refreshing Spring Resort welcomes us
When we arrived at Refreshing Spring Resort, we were awed by the natural beauty of the place. We were in the middle of nowhere surrounded by 40 acres of lush greenery and fruit trees - cempedak, rambutans, pulasan, longan and durians.

We ate our first durian before we even checked in and we continued to feast on the creamiest durians ever every day. Unfortunately there weren't many of them. Only one or two each day because our training was held in the third week of January, which was the end of the durian season. Chiak beh liao ar ("eat until cannot finish" if translated literally from Hokkien) for participants who manage to plan their training there to coincide with the durian season.

Our first durian upon arrival. Simply fantastic!
The rooms were clean and simply furnished with attached bathroom. My room-mate was Jin Choo, Pastor Choon Huan's wife.
I stayed in one of the terrace rooms - like terrace houses except the door opens into the room. There were other accommodations like this wooden longhouse.
Someone told me that this is the owner's residence
We spent the first afternoon break exploring the place: plucking rambutans and ambra from off the trees, dipping our toes into the river running through the resort and visiting the hot spring. There were lights at the hot spring and so we were able to enjoy a warm and relaxing dip the next night before bed-time.

Elisa plucking rambutans for us
Ambra for your picking
Longans just outside our rooms
The river that runs through the property provides a cooling respite for the hot afternoons
Still waters
There are fish inside this pond beside our rooms.
At the hot spring. The lady holding an umbrella forgot to bring her sun block. That's why it's much better to soak at night.
For the young and active, there is paintball and wall-climbing for them to work off their excess energy.

Wall-climbing that led to a few sore arms the next day
Refreshing Spring Resort is a leisurely 3-hour drive away from Penang and is an ideal place for a church camp because:
  1. there is no 3G connection and wifi there is very slow. You can be sure your participants won't be surfing the net while sessions are on.
  2. it is very secluded. The journey out to the nearest town, Kalumpang, takes at least half-an-hour and part of the way is over a dirt road with no street lights. No running out to get your teh tarik or internet fix, especially at night.
The food is just basic home-cooked dishes except for the last night when we were treated to a barbecue. According to those who had attended other sessions there, venison may even appear on the barbecue menu if they happen to catch a deer that day.

Dinner on our first night
Barbecue on the last night
If you like a peaceful, relaxing holiday in a natural setting then this is the place for you. If not, the tranquility and lack of connectivity may just drive you crazy. Of course, we were there during the off-season so there's no telling how peaceful it will be during the school holidays when the place is full.


huzaimi said...

Hi Mel, can you advise me how to contact the owner of Refreshing Spring Resort? I tried to call the hp number provided on the official website many many times but can't get through... I want to take my group for a team building there this April. Hope you can help. Thank you.

Melsong said...

Hi Huzaimi, I'll try to get his h/phone number for you from the organizer of our training programme.

Melsong said...

Hi Huzaimi,

Here's the contact. Grace Goh 0192401308.

Sorry it took longer than expected.

cherry zii said...

Hi, Mel... can i know the price for Entrance?
and have other fees for the game?