A new entry to the Malaysia Book of Records
We were invited to Legoland Malaysia to witness their official record setting of the “Most Number of Mandarin Orange Replicas Made of LEGO® Bricks”. Surpassing their original target of 1,888 Mandarin Oranges, they managed to build an apt 2,015, and arranged them as follows, which was a fitting formation indeed!
We were honoured to meet Mark Germyn, General Manager of Legoland Malaysia Resort, who chatted with us warmly. The officials from the Malaysia Book of Records were also there, explaining how they counted each and every number brick mandarin orange over many hours! Anyone wishing to set a similar record next, would have to exceed the number of bricks by at least 20%.
It was heartwarming to learn how the Chinese New Year festivities at Legoland Malaysia included fulfilling a wish of one guest (our of 5,000) who participated in the Make-A-CNY-Wish activity at the Park. The winner was Ms Wong Yoke Lian from Kuala Lumpur, who had submitted a wish for 40 children from Diabetes Malaysia (Johor) to have a day out at Legoland. What a meaningful wish to fulfil; I’m sure those 40 children are going to have the time of their life! Well done, Legoland!
It was also announced that come March 2015, a new LEGO Friends ‘live’ show will open at the Park, featuring a five girl cast from the UK, original LEGO Friends music (my kids LOVE “Best friends forever”, and dance to it all the time at home), and a script specially written for Legoland Malaysia Resort. From the start of the Singapore March holidays (on Sat 14 March) to the end of June, there will be three performances daily. Annual pass holders can look forward to an exclusive preview session on Friday 13 March too, with a special opportunity to meet and greet the LEGO Friends cast. Sounds super!
This was definitely the highlight of our trip, and such a treat for the whole family! What really impressed me most about the hotel was the impeccable service provided. From the reception desk, to the concierge, to the bell captains – everyone spoke fluent English, was professional, warm, knowledgeable and polite, no matter how trivial a question was posed to them. They even helped us to locate a pencil case that K misplaced at the lobby, and promptly called our room as promised, when it was found.
You won’t mind waiting at the check-in desk cos you can gawk at the 12,528 minifigs whilst doing so, and marvel at how they are magnified by the wheel of the bicycle whenever it rolls past! My jaw dropped when I was told that very single one is different. Whoever came up with that design is a genius and deserves a medal. I would LOVE to have a study room wall like that – if only!
Then there is the rest of the hotel lobby, which is one of the most impressive that I’ve ever come across. A two storey high castle that looks like it’s made of Duplo, with a moat full of Lego bricks that children just gravitate to subconsciously. Words fail me, so I’ll just let the photos do the talking. Check. this. out.
There were nooks in the hotel for children to play with foam bricks (the same ones that float around in the Build-A-Raft lazy river at the Water Park), Duplo bricks, dance at the Xbox Kinect area, watch how the Lego story began in an animated cartoon, movie nights every night……
There was also a range of different daily activities on offer at the “activity desk” helmed by hotel staff in the lobby, and K was pleased to receive a certificate after she completed a brick cat! The disco lights and ABBA music also had us jiving in the lifts, especially B, even if other guests were in the lift (an elderly Caucasian lady quipped “You’re really good at dancing, eh?”).
I thought the room was everything that a themed hotel room should be. Floor to ceiling pirate wallpaper in the kids’ alcove, Lego poster minifigs peeking out, intricate Lego installations comprising hundreds of bricks mounted on every wall and door frame (even in the bathroom)…
Lego packaging for the bathroom toiletries and amenity kits, and a large safe that functions as a treasure chest – K was thrilled from the get-go and couldn’t wait to solve the “secret code” which unlocked some cool souvenirs. All the rooms can accommodate at least 5 people, which is very considerate for families with three kids, or some families with 2 kids and a helper (3-in-1 bunk bed with trundle in every room). The bunk bed is partitioned in a separate alcove, which cosily includes a TV just for the kids (yay, we parents need not watch cartoons for once!).
Incidentally, what immediately impressed the adults was the WIDE corridor. Most of the hotels we’ve visited in recent years have really narrow corridors given space scarcity, so this corridor (complete with themed carpets) felt like such a luxury!
Bricks Family Restaurant
Buffet breakfast for the whole family is included in the hotel room package, so we headed down to the Bricks Restaurant which opens bright and early from 7am to 10am. The Theme Park opens at 9am, and the Water Park at 10am, so most guests would be out by 10am. Since our girls woke up at the break of dawn as usual (sigh), we had breakfast around 730am, where the Restaurant was nice and empty. It was really crowded by the time we left at 845am though!
Being a Lego fan, I was fascinated by the large models that were everywhere! So many master builders must have been involved in conceptualising and putting these works of art together. My favourite was the chef with a deck of plates that constantly rotated. Robotics + Lego = yet more magic!
K was very pleased with the station of little fairy cakes right outside the restaurant. Kids could choose from milk chocolate, dark chocolate, or white chocolate sauce toppings, followed by four types of candy toppings which were an absolute hit with my girls.
The hotel exterior also looks like it was completely built of Duplo. One storey high “minifigs” stand sentinel at the Second Lower Ground Floor entrance, representing characters from the three room themes of Pirate, Adventure and Kingdom.
We really appreciated how close the hotel was to both the Theme Park and the Water Park. The hotel is located between the two Parks and just a 2 min walk from either. The Hotel car park was also easily accessible from the Second Lower Ground Floor (LG2), and very safe to boot (puns all intended).
Theme Park and Water Park
Having visited the Theme Park before (read about all the crazy fun we had here and here), the girls and I just zoomed in to indulge in our favourite activities. That meant some 10 rounds around the Junior Driving School for B, pony jousting for K and B (the latter just qualified for it, and loved it so much she asked to go back again and again, and chalked up at least 10 rounds in total too!), and the exhilarating Dragon roller coaster for yours truly (twice, in the front-most seat both times).
This was the first time we explored the Water Park, and I was glad that it had something fun for every age. Four year old B is not adventurous when it comes to rides and slides, so she was very happy parking herself at the “Duplo Splash Safari” zoo-themed shallow pool with two un-intimidating slides. Being the social creature she is, she had a great time chatting to the lifeguard on duty. We realised that there was no brochure map for the Water Park, so here’s a photo of the billboard-sized map for reference and planning! There’s also a printable version online.
Our entire family went on the “Build-A-Raft” ride down the lazy river at opening time, so it was not crowded at all. As usual, there are elaborate Lego structures dotting the river, to marvel at as you float along on a transparent dinghy. One thing that struck me about the staff was how fun-loving most of them are, aiming water jets at unsuspecting children and the like!
Six year old K had a fun time taking on the slides at the Joker Soaker since she makes the minimum height of 102cm. It was even fun for me! We also went on the Red Rush, which is similar to K’s favourite ride at Wild Wild Wet in Pasir Ris, where a family is seated on a large raft, and whoosh down a huge flat pipe.
The hubs and I then had a great time reliving our childhood (and competing on speed) at the Big Splash lookalike of the Slide Racers. K was not keen on the tall slides, though at 110cm, she qualified for all of them. So the hubs and I went ahead with conquering the Tidal Tube, (very dark and twisty, and thus exhilarating – right tube more so than the left). Those were higher and longer as compared to the Twin Chasers, which are sort of a junior version for those who only reach 102cm in height. The red-and-yellow Brick Blaster was closed, which was a shame, but Splash-n-Swirl next door, which features a large drop (lots of screams from other park visitors but I really relished the ride!) and mimics being sloshed down a sink’s drain, was open and fun. Many physics learning points there too, haha!
All too soon, we hit check-out time, so we headed back to our room for a good shower, and bid a reluctant farewell to Legoland.
Lego means play
I had previously blogged about a Lego epiphany, so coming back from Legoland meant re-living the fun through playing with the Lego sets we bought! K built this snazzy electric car with a boot that opens (our favourite feature), with help from B (finding the pieces) and mummy (master ‘vetter’).
Lego is one of the toys that we parents loved as children, and toys that we still don’t tire of playing with our kids today! It was so fun just assembling this small set, and conjuring up all sorts of stories and situations for Mia and her electric car. In fact, I’d say that the Legoland Malaysia Resort is an experience of playing with Lego writ large, and for that reason alone, we know we’ll be back again!
LEGOLAND Malaysia Resort
GPS Coordinates : 1º 25’ 38″ N 103º 37’ 47″ E (a mere 10 mins away from the Tuas checkpoint)
Address: 7, Jalan Legoland, Bandar Medini, 79250 Nusajaya, Johor, Malaysia
Tel: +60 7-597 8888
Note: A big thank you to Legoland Malaysia for inviting us to the resort, and for the stay at their amazing hotel.