Montigo Resorts, Nongsa: A Magical Haven of Food and Fun in Batam

In my previous post, I’ve shared a general overview of the beautiful Montigo Resorts and the two-bedroom villa that we stayed. If you’ve missed it, you can read it HERE. Today, I’ll share more about the food and activities in this resort.  😀

Dining Establishments

There are 5 dining options in the resort, each serving different cuisines to cater to a variety of taste. This is Tadd’s Restaurant – an all-day dining restaurant offering ala-carte local, Asian and Western delights for a casual lunch, relaxing dinner, as well as a quick snack while the kids play at the neighbouring Tilo Kids Club.

Tadd's Restaurant
Tadd’s Restaurant

The buffet breakfast (included in the room rate) is served at Tadd’s Restaurant too. Personally, I love the relaxed semi al-fresco poolside setting in this restaurant. Every morning, I looked forward to the buffet breakfast with a variety of live cooking stations such as eggs, nasi kuning, chicken soup, prata and fried noodles. Don’t miss the fresh bakery as well as Nongsa noodles! The breakfast certainly gave me a reason to smile and started my day with many happy thoughts.

As a mom, I was also delighted to see a kids’ food corner. The section is built lower than elsewhere in the restaurant so that young children can reach the food items easily. That way, parents can enjoy their breakfast and eat in peace too.  😆

Montigo Ayam Panggang Berempah
Montigo Ayam Panggang Berempah | IDR 145,000++ (approx. S$17 after taxes)

One of my favourite dishes is Ayam Panggang Berempah (Spicy Grilled Chicken). It comes with an oven-roasted spring chicken that is SO flavourful, sautéed long beans, steamed jasmine rice, prawn crackers and spicy sambal. If you’re here, I highly recommend that you give this a try. Personally, I find that the food here is reasonably-priced too.

Oxtail Soup
Oxtail Soup | clear beef oxtail soup, carrot, tomato, lime, emping, spring onion, celery, steamed jasmine rice
Seafood Chips
Seafood and Chips | herb breaded red snapper, squid and prawns, french fries, spicy aioli sauce
Traditional Gado-Gado
Traditional Gado-Gado Salad – my favourite appetizer!

Montigo Resorts, Nongsa: A Luxurious Beachfront Resort with Private Pool

I am unabashedly a fan of beach resort. Today, I want to share with you a luxurious 5-star beachfront resort that has been at the top of my travel bucket list for some time, and one day I’d love to cross it off my list. That’s Montigo Resorts, Nongsa – the upscale and award-winning Batam resort famed for its Mediterranean stylings and all-white Santorini vibes.

Recently, Montigo Resorts launched its first-ever ferry service – Montigo Ferry, offering guests the luxury of travelling to and from the resort in private and comfortable ease. Managed and owned entirely by the resort, the 85-seater ferry is operated by Batam Fast. It will shuttle between Tanah Merah Ferry Terminal in Singapore and Nongsapura Ferry Terminal in Batam. Montigo Resorts guests will enjoy extra perks such as priority boarding and express immigration clearance at Nongsapura Ferry Terminal.

Getting to Montigo Resorts

The easiest and most comfortable way to travel to the resort is via Montigo Ferry (yup, the new one!). It provides comfortable seats with the convenience of priority boarding, concierge service for luggage assistance, and express immigration clearance at Nongsapura Ferry Terminal.

You’d LOVE the convenience of travelling to the resort with no luggage on-hand and no squeezing on public ferries!  😆 The 45-minute ferry ride was easy peasy, and the resort is just 5-minute drive from Nongsa (free shuttle service provided by the resort).

Alternatively, you can also travel by Batam Fast. Price wise, Montigo Ferry is slightly higher. If you’re travelling with the elderly or young kids, I find that it’s worth paying for the convenience and comfort.

On the other hand, the advantage of taking Batam Fast is that it has more departure timings. Now, Montigo Ferry only offers one departure timing on weekday and I hope they will increase it in future.

We took the 1:40pm ferry and arrived at Nongsa at approximately 1:30pm – Batam is one hour behind Singapore. As we walked to the immigration, we saw a Montigo Resorts booth just in front of it. We handed our passports to the staff and were given a “special clearance pass”. The staff assisted to get our passports stamped, so we just walked out without having to queue at the immigration counters. How easy, hahah!  😉

Once we walked out to the arrival hall, we saw another Montigo Resorts booth and staffs directing us to the Montigo Resorts shuttle service (already waiting for us). We arrived at the resort at about 2:00pm. The seamless transition from Singapore to Montigo Resorts, Nongsa via Montigo Ferry is definitely a great start to our vacation.

Montigo Resorts Nongsa Shuttle

As we arrived, we were greeted by friendly staffs with welcome drinks and cold towel. Edison was thrilled to see Tilo, the adorable resort mascot. And here’s his first photo in this resort!

Montigo Resorts Nongsa

Radisson Golf and Convention Center Batam 3D2N Fun Getaway

No one needs further introduction to Batam, an island famed for its food and spa facilities. Even though we’ve been to Bintan several times, this was our virgin trip to Batam. We chose to stay at Radisson Golf and Convention Center Batam because it’s one of the newest hotels (opened in Oct 2016). Radisson is also an upscale full service international hotel brand that is reliable and service driven.

Radisson Golf and Convention Center Batam
Photo Credit: Radisson Golf and Convention Center Batam

Situated in the upscale Sukajadi area, Radisson Golf and Convention Center Batam has 240 guest rooms and suites. It’s connected to an 18-hole Sukajadi championship golf course, within walking distance to Kepri Shopping Mall and 5km away from the Batam Center Ferry Terminal. Other amenities include a restaurant and a bar, an outdoor and indoor pool, a fitness centre, Kid’s Club and Zoysia Spa.

Getting to Radisson Golf and Convention Center Batam

Majestic Fast Ferry

We took a ferry from HarbourFront Ferry Terminal to Batam Center Ferry Terminal. Among the various ferry operators, we chose Majestic Fast Ferry – the leading ferry operator in Batam. I understand that they are the fastest and most luxurious fleet with 14 sailings daily between HarbourFront and Batam Center.

As I walked towards the ferry, I noticed that it looked so much newer as compared to its competitor’s ferries. I love its cleanliness; the seats are also spacious and comfortable. There are toilets on the ferry. Drinking water is also provided. One thing that is worth mentioning, the staffs are very helpful in assisting the elderly and young ones to board the ferry.

Frankly, I’ve always been sea sick on small boats, but this ferry is very stable and I had NO seasickness at all. In fact, it was a very smooth sail from Singapore to Batam. Thumbs up!

We reached Batam Center Ferry Terminal in about an hour. As we walked to the arrival hall, we saw a Radisson staff holding a signage bearing Edison’s name. Imagine his excitement when he saw that, haha! Truth is, I’ve booked for a private car transfer to the hotel. This is the easiest way to get to the hotel, and it costs only IDR 100,000 (~SG$10). In the taxi, there are wet towels for us to refresh ourselves and drinking water to quench our thirst. So warm and thoughtful! =)

As the driver turned into the driveway to the hotel, the 15-storey building instantly caught my attention. It looks so grand and stood out from its surroundings. When I stepped into the lobby, I was continually impressed with its gorgeousness. High ceilings with great natural light, large ball shaped lighting with glistening swirls, and ample seats for guests. Additionally, there are also wet towels, welcome drinks and apples to welcome the guests.

Radisson Golf and Convention Center Batam
Radisson Golf & Convention Center Batam Lobby

Bintan Mangrove Discovery Tour by Bintan Resorts

This was our third trip to Bintan. For the last two trips, we didn’t have a chance to join any local excursion. Even though the trips have been happily satisfying, we felt that a discovery tour beyond the resort would make it more complete.

So, we went to the Guest Information Centre at Nirwana Resort Hotel lobby to check out the tours. There are many interesting tours offered by BRC Tours, such as Bintan Elephant Park, Bintan Village Nature & River Spa, and Mangrove Discovery Tour.

Mangrove Discovery Tour is the Winner of the 2003 PATA Gold Award for Ecotourism, so we thought it must be good. Furthermore, it’s not something that we can find in Singapore and other countries. Hence, we decided to give it a try!

Bintan Mangrove

Bintan Mangrove 2Jetty where the tour starts off from

The shuttle bus from BRC Tour picked us from our resort half an hour before the tour, and the journey to Bintan Mangrove took about 10 minutes. Once we reached, we were given a short briefing and what to expect during this 1.5 hours tour by our tour guide.

Guide Map

I must confessed that I wasn’t as excited as Edison about nature excursion. And I also wasn’t expecting much apart from a nice cooling boat ride. But for Edison, he was so thrilled when he heard that he might be able to see wildlife in the mangrove. Snakes, kingfisher, monitor lizard, otters, mud skipper and monkeys, just to name a few.

After spraying ourselves with mosquito repellent and armed with safety life jackets (we hated them but it’s a must to wear), we were ready for our tour!

Group PicA group photo with our tour mates

Sorry for the poor quality photos. I just brought a small point-and-shoot camera because I couldn’t handle a big camera on a shaky boat.

As our boat speed through the quiet waterways of Sebung River, we enjoyed the cooling boat ride and sights around us (thanks to the great weather!). We saw fishermen’s huts and local fishermen catching fishes using traditional methods.

Sebung River

Nirwana Gardens Bintan: Review & Recommendations

Nirwana Gardens Bintan is an integrated beach resort spanning over 330 hectares that offers five accommodation options ranging from family-friendly to the romantic and exclusive. Just an hour ferry ride away from Tanah Merah Ferry Terminal, it’s the perfect relaxing haven from bustling Singapore.

Nirwana Gardens offers numerous facilities and services which could keep their guests entertained for days. It also has its own private beach where guests could use for various activities.

Now, let me give you a glimpse of what you can expect at this family-friendly yet fun-filled resort in Bintan Island.

Getting to Nirwana Gardens Bintan

We took the ferry at Bintan Resort Ferries at Tanah Merah Ferry Terminal. The journey to Bintan Ferry Terminal took just an hour. The ferry is very comfortable and clean with a deli offering snacks and beverages.

We took the 11:10am ferry and arrived at Bintan at 11:10am (Indonesia time is one hour behind Singapore). For details on ferry schedule and ticket fares, you can visit BRF website.

Travelling to Nirwana Gardens is totally fuss-free. Just check-in at Bintan Resort Ferries counter at least an hour before departure. Upon arrival at Bintan Ferry Terminal and after immigration and customs, take the complimentary shuttle bus to Nirwana Gardens. We arrived at the resort in just 10 mins.

Upon arrival, we were greeted by helpful staffs to assist in our check-in and luggage, together with local cultural dance performance and light refreshments to welcome our arrival.

Accommodation

There are five types of accommodations at Nirwana Gardens. The most popular one is the Nirwana Resort Hotel – where we stayed. There are 245 refurbished rooms that come with view of the landscaped gardens, South China Sea or swimming pool.

Nirwana GardensEntrance to Nirwana Resort Hotel
Deluxe RoomNirwana Room in Nirwana Resort Hotel

We stayed in a Nirwana Room that is equipped with TV with multiple cable channels, mini-bar, private shower with bathtub, basic toiletries, personal safe, hairdryer, and complimentary WiFi. The room is clean, spacious and comfortable. We also had an extra bed for Edison.

Nirwana Resort Hotel is perfect for families as it has literally everything you need for a fuss-free family holiday! Its family-friendly environment is a sure win for parents and children.

Nirwana Gardens 2The three-storey Nirwana Resort Hotel

Other accommodations at Nirwana Gardens include the rustic Mayang Sari Beach Resort, the village-style Nirwana Beach Club (with cabana rooms), Banyu Biru Villa for families and gatherings, as well as the exclusive Indra Maya Pool Villa.

The key advantage of this resort is the various accommodation options to suit travellers’ needs and budget.