Friday, December 30, 2016

Jugra TubeStay Is An Overated Staycation.

Jugra TubeStay, Banting.
Jugra TubeStay, Banting.

Jugra TubeStay, Banting.
Shareen and I

In November, my close girlfriend and I wanted to take a trip together and we have half the mind of trying the famous Tadom Hill Resorts but ended up booking this new place, Jugra TubeStay after stumbling upon a Facebook post about this place. From the Facebook post, it seemed like they had so much fun staying there with loads of activities to do. Plus, from the pictures, it looks pretty misty, like the place was pretty cooling. So why not. Booked and paid in a heartbeat, RM80 for one room. Additionally, we also ordered their lamb meal so we don't have to drive out for dinner. 

Before the check-in date, they did a reminder through email, which was pretty awesome. Plus, I asked them tons of questions before booking the place through Facebook message and they replied swiftly in a polite manner. So, from the beginning itself, I was pretty happy with their customer service. Then on the check-in day, they phone text messaged me an hour before the check-in time (2pm) to remind me again with information like bring your own toiletries and towel and etc. I'm pleased with this until they called me on the phone while I was 10 minutes away from their place wanting to inform me that my lamb meal was not available that day but I told them I'll talk to them when I arrive. 

We arrived at Jugra TubeStay roughly at 2pm. It was pretty deep in Banting, creepingly sunny, and I had almost to no signal on Maxis. Check-in as pretty easy, as the nice lady, Fi Fi, was just sitting at the cafe area. That's where she told me the alternative to my unavailable lamb meal, which is grilled chicken with a side of one sausage and I have to add RM10 on top of my RM15 (for the lamb) for this new chicken menu... er... no thank you. Thank God they have a refund option and mentioned that they have burgers selling at night at a reasonable price. So we chose the refund option as we were pretty excited for burgers.

Fi Fi gave a simple rundown of the place, which wasn't big, just by pointing where's our room and the female toilet and some free activities we can do later in the evening around 5pm if we want to do the activities. We took the key and parked our car inside the compound. By then, is didn't many guest around, probably hiding in the room cause it was pretty hot outside. 

I seriously thank God there was a/c in the room although the room was pretty small, definitely two medium sized person max. There's really almost no space to stand, even when you sit up on the bed, you'll need to make sure you don't hit the wall if you are tall like my beautiful friend Shareen. 

Jugra TubeStay, Banting.
Jugra TubeStay, Banting.

There's one plug point, which I brought extension so we can both charge our gadgets simultaneously. There's only one setting to the a/c as we are not given the remote control for the a/c. Blanket was well... that little grey sheet on the bed, that's it. We had a hard time sharing the blanket, so I highly suggest you to bring one your own. Bags you can only place them at the bottom, please don't bring a luggage like me cause there's only one way and place you can put them. There were some ants crawling along the walls which we try to kill as many by hand. There were a few piece of hair on the side of the bed that wasn't ours, it was stuck to the wood that supports the bed. Other than that, bed and pillows are decently clean and comfortable for sleeping. 

It was pretty hot between 2pm to 4pm as the sun is at its peak. It was still rather uncomfortable inside the room even with the a/c on but I think it was because we were feeling sticky after a long day. Showering could have done solved the problem but we only wanted to shower at night before sleeping, so we just chill and hung out inside till 5pm. 

This is the toilet and shower place. One entrance for male, another for female. 

There's only 1 toilet with sink and a small mirror (no tissue) and 2 shower room (no heater) for the female communal shower/toilet. 

The "backyard" of TubeStay Jugra.

We thought we could try fishing but fishing was just fishing by the big drain outside and small pond inside. Fishing rod is kampung style, hook tied to fishing string that's tied to a long stick. Bait? Use the grasshopper that we'll have to catch ourself. But if you ask nicely, they will actually help you catch them. According to Fi Fi, if you are very lucky, you could actually catch a fish. We calculated the time and energy spent to the odds of catching a fish, we decided to take a walk instead. 

We walked to the "backyard" where the cows were, took some pictures. Then decided to hike up the lighthouse with our slippers. Such smartypants of us. Lols. 3km up was not all bad, the view was truly beautiful and the air was fresh. It's pretty safe to hike up as there were people and families (in their proper workout attire) hiking up that hill too. If you are lazy, you can choose to drive up too. 

Half way up.

Jugra Lighthouse

Once we reached the lighthouse, you can't go in the actual lighthouse, there's just a place for you to chill up there before you go back down. We took two pictures and then walk back down because we wanted to reach the bottom before the sky goes dark. 

When we reached back to our room, Fi Fi came to inform us that the burger man is not opening his stall tonight because he broke his leg. So we had to drive out for dinner. D: Why la... 

My waze wasn't working because I can't get a stable connection there. So I drove by instinct. After 30 minutes, finally reached Morib. We passed by a couple of food stalls along the way but decided not to stop. Happiness is when we finally ordered our food, BURGER and SATAY KING.

This satay is to die for. So juicy and delicious.

Driving back to Jugra TubeStay was Silent Hill all the way. I managed to activate Waze from Morib (because it was freaking full bar and 4G there) but it took me through a road less travelled with no street lights and tall bushes and trees on both sides. Lols, what a journey. Thank God we managed to get back in one piece in about the same time as our journey to Morib earlier.

It was only about 8 or 9pm, we were hoping that they might light up the campfire but they didn't. So we decided to chill at the cafe/canteen area and play some available games like Snake and Ladder, and Congkak with incomplete marbles. The night was pretty windy and it rained a little. It was a nice night hanging with my girlfriend but it seems like we were the only there with Fi Fi at another table while other guests were already in their room. Lols. After we're done, we showered cold water while it was still drizzling outside. Ran from the bathroom to our room.

Jugra TubeStay, Banting.
You think the night is pretty? Just wait till you see the morning.

This is the cafe/canteen area

Funny story - I woke up around 2/3am with a need to pee. I didn't want to wake my friend up and didn't want to go out at that hour. So I waited till it's 5am, then it was urgent, so I informed my friend that I'm going out and rushed to the toilet. Lega... Then I when back to sleep in peace. 

Woke up around 8am, did our devotion and prayer together before heading out for breakfast. It was a beautiful morning as the sky was clear with amazing cooling breeze in the air. Of course, our slippers got wet from the night before because we left them outside but no biggie. 

Walk to the cafe/canteen, order our toast with kaya (~RM2) and mocha (~RM3) and had a quiet breakfast with a view. There was no mist like Genting Highlands but somehow it still caught my attention. Shareen had her cup noodles too as they provide hot and cold water for free anytime you ask. 

Jugra TubeStay, Banting.
Somehow, the morning view and breeze was just something I was truly thankful for. It was the highlight of the trip.

It was all amazing until the sun starts rising by 11am-ish. It was starting to get hot again and we saw people starting to check-out, actually, by 8am we already saw a couple checking out the place. Lols. So we took one last picture, packed and check-out by 11.30am, in our pajamas. 

Overall, the experience wasn't completely bad, just wasn't up to our expectation and there are really nothing much to do there other than hike the Jugra Lighthouse Hill if fishing, cycling, archery, and checking out the Jugra Museum is not your thing. Other activities such as Fun Trike (RM30 per person for a 4-minute ride down the hill) and Paragliding (RM200 per person) are add ons that's going to cost more. The place didn't look as misty as the picture shown in their website, maybe we weren't lucky to experience them, they can't control weather anyway. I'm just glad I was there with a girlfriend that I can talk to and catch up and be silent together, it was her presence that made the trip much more enjoyable. 

It's definitely not a place if you can't rough it out a little because this "glamping" place still requires some fine-tuning before it can be a great glamping staycation. For now, it's a little overated but not all bad. 


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