Cover Story: Sunset paradise

This article first appeared in Options, The Edge Malaysia Weekly, on October 5, 2020 - October 11, 2020.
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Teluk Bahang at the northwestern tip of Penang is a pristine bay with spectacular sea views. Datuk Simon Foong of Senja Aman fell in love with the location  at first sight, and decided to build Angsana Teluk Bahang. He talks to Petrina Fernandez about bringing Banyan Tree’s first Angsana property to Malaysia and the beautiful resort perfectly framed between sea and forest.

Conventional wisdom in Victorian England was that the sea possessed not just fearsome monsters but also curative powers. Doctors prescribed retreats to the coast for maladies ranging from a poor constitution and melancholy to tuberculosis and stress, the latter resulting from the pressures of “urban life, pollution and the general deterioration of society”, according to The Atlantic.

Facing the same ailments, contemporary society seeks that age-old therapy of fresh air and sunshine by the sea, which has been proven to restore good health and spirits. Once freed from the restrictions of the Movement Control Order, Malaysians flocked to beachfront hotels all over the country to enjoy nature almost with a vengeance. As far as the timing for a resort launch goes, this seems an opportune moment.

“I think we were lucky that we had not yet opened when the novel coronavirus pandemic first swept through Malaysia; we would have taken a real hit,” says Datuk Simon Foong. “Now that life is returning to normal somewhat, people are looking to get out of the city. It is a great time to Cuti-cuti Malaysia, as the local tourism campaign goes, and it shows: bookings for opening week are very encouraging.”

For the full story, pick up a copy of The Edge Malaysia (October 5, 2020) at your nearest news stands or visit optionstheedge.com.