The Best of NileGuide
Johor Bahru (commonly known as JB) is the state capital of Johor in southern peninsular Malaysia, just across the Causeway from Singapore. It unavoidably suffers from comparison with its neighbor and is probably more well known as an industrial city rather than a tourist-friendly town. There are plenty of accommodation choices in JB. Much of them are in the city center, and this is probably the best area to stay.
At the top end, the Grand BlueWave Hotel on Jalan Bukit Meldrum, is a stately 20-story, 184-room structure close to the Causeway and the shopping centers of City Square, Kotaraya and ZON. The Mutiara Hotel, on Jalan Datok Sulaiman, was formerly the Holiday Inn Crowne Plaza. It is located next to Holiday Plaza but is away from the main area. This was probably the first luxury hotel in the city, and it has stood the test of time. The Puteri Pacific on Jalan Abdullah Ibrahim is a five-star hotel with 500 rooms and suites. The Thistle Johor Bahru is one of JB's best, although the location is awkward if using public transport, with a very limited selection of shops or restaurants nearby.
The JB Central Hotel is a good mid-market choice close to the Grand BlueWave, while the 11@century Hotel is close to the Mutiara. The Embassy Hotel and Serviced Apartment is of interest to those wanting more room. The Okid Hotel Permas Jaya is a budget hotel in this area.
In other areas of town, three budget properties are: the Rose Cottage Hotel, Grand Dragon and Aspen Summer Hotel.
There are some good hotels out of town. The four-star Pulai Desaru Beach Hotel is a 90-minute drive from Johor Bahru, offering panoramic views of the South China Sea and a great get-away-from-it-all atmosphere. The 700-room Lotus Desaru Beach Resort is nearby. The Pulai Springs Resort, 15 kilometers from the city, is a golfing haven with two 18-hole championship golf courses. It features resort-pools, Jacuzzis, a gymnasium, a cineplex, billiards, a library, a kid's club, steam rooms and sauna rooms, tennis, table-tennis, squash courts and The Pulai Spa.