Genting getaway for a perfect bonding session


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Theres nothing like digging in to the soupy goodness of a simmering steamboat filled with prawns and fish after fighting off the icy, frigid cold of SnowWorld.

Slogan contest winners whisked up to the hilltop resort for a day of fun.

HERE in lies the challenge. Seven teenagers. Mostly strangers. Forty eight hours to optimise their relationships.

So you read the literature and try to figure out what the science of bonding people is: stranger to acquaintance, crush to date, friend to best friend. But with seven teenagers aged between 14 and 17? That’s a tall order for bonding.

Thanks to a one-stop wholesome family destination in Malaysia’s highland jewel, however, we were well on our way to achieving bonding goals: going on a trip, doing something adventurous, providing a frequent shared space, sharing meals, creating a common goal, and injecting some ‘challenges’ the fun way!

Ten creative winners were selected for the two-day, one-night all-expenses-paid trip. Seven eager beavers snatched up the prize -- with a couple coming from as far as Seremban and Taiping.

The students Clarisse Lim Qian Hui and Inddoo Manimaran of SMK USJ 12, Selangor, Madhumitha Ann Andrew Clarke of SMK Convent Klang, Selangor, Nur Qashrina Aiman Samsuddin of SMK Cheras Jaya, Kuala Lumpur, Nurul Aleefa Muhd Nazib of Sekolah Bersepadu Kemayan Seremban, Negri Sembilan, Nuvashnee Murugesan of SMK Taman Tasik, Taiping, Perak, and Yip Ren-Wei of St Joseph’s Institution International School Malaysia, Petaling Jaya, all had something in common. They had submitted entries without expecting to clinch the prize!

Inddoo, 17, was grateful that her teachers, family and friends encouraged her to take part in the competition. “I never thought that I’d be among the 10 winners,” she said.

There wasn’t a moment to lose as the day was jammed-packed with activities. The participants checked into the newly reburbished Theme Park Hotel, a precursor to the excitement that awaits thrill ride ethusiasts at the soon-to-be-launched Twentieth Century Fox World theme park.

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Clockwise (sitting) Nuvashnee, Nurul Aleefa, Nur Qashrina, Ren-Wei, Clarisse, Inddoo and Madhumitha Ann take in the sights and sounds of animatronic dinosaurs that once roamed the planet at the Jurassic Research Centre. 

The six young ladies were lodged at the Sixes, a comfortable tatami-styled raised platform room that accommodated three king-sized beds, two of which were bunker styled. The raised sleeping platform also served as storage space to store luggage hence, lending itself to an airy, roomier feel. Hand drawn designs in white paint on the television panels and on blackout roller blinds resulted in lighthearted and playful decor fit for families.

After a historical introduction of the highland resort at the Visitors’ Galleria, the young guests were welcomed by Katherine Chew, vice president resort communications and public relations, Genting Malaysia Berhad. Topping the list of questions from the teenagers were the million dollar questions: when would the Twentieth Century Fox World theme park be opening and would there be enough rides for everyone?

While the exact date for the opening of the theme park has yet to be announced, Chew did assure the teenagers that “it would be soon”. And not to worry, however, as there were ample rides to keep everyone entertained in this family holiday destination.

“There are 24 outdoor rides and 25 indoor rides. Along with seven hotels located here, we will be expecting tourist arrivals to increase from 60,000 to 100,000 people,” Chew said.

For now, there are many more entertaining activities families can look forward to in the coming half of the year like the first professional full-UK cast, full-length Swan Lake ballet performance, and concerts from classical pop group Il Divo and pianist Yiruma.

After a tea time treat of rich, creamy chocolatey cakes and hot cocoa drinks of their choice, the teenagers were on a sugar rush to get going to the Jurassic Research CentreRipley’s Believe It or Not! Odditorium, and SnowWorld.

While these indoor amusement attractions piqued the teenagers’ curiosity, there was nothing like a zombie apocalypse to cement budding friendships.

The trip to Zombie Outbreak won the vote hands-down as one of the most exciting activities on the trip.

After all, who could resist the lure of heart rate spikes, sweaty palms and that adrenaline rush!

But like AMC’s Walking Dead series, everybody needs a hero like Rick Grimes to lead them to the promise land.

It was a unanimous decision that Ren-Wei, despite being one of the youngest on the trip, take on that role. It didn’t matter either that Ren-Wei was spooked by the lurking zombies and monsters that probably wanted to eat him (although this writer suspects that being the only thorn among the roses was what did him in).

Ren-Wei, 14, said: “It was scary and I screamed a lot. This is my third experience in a haunted house. Zombie Outbreak takes the cake. There were a lot of corners in the maze and these zombies popped out from nowhere!” he said. Having been on many school excursions, what did Ren Wei like about this trip?

“This is a smaller group and so we got to complete more activities in a faster time. I will try to come up more as I didn’t know there were so many things to do here,” said Ren-Wei.

Clarisse, 17, had a whale of a time at the resort. Citing Zombie Outbreak as the best activity of the day albeit all the screaming and tripping over her newly-found friends, Clarisse vowed to return to the resort with friends especially once the theme park is ready to receive visitors.

“I like the weather here and the shopping is so good, too. Some of the stores here are a lot bigger than the ones in the Klang Valley!” she quipped. Clarisse had been taking lots of selfies and uploading them on her Instagram.

“Lots of my friends were interested and asked me what I was up to and how I got to go on the trip here. It is one of the most memorable experiences I’ve had. We did a lot of fun things and made friends with new people!” said Clarisse.

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Contest winners listen attentively as Chua Kah Mun (left), executive, resort communication and public relations, Genting Malaysia Berhad, explains the history of the resort at the Visitors’ Galleria.

After the dark invasion at zombie land, Clarisse’s schoolmate, Indoo braced for what she thought would be the cadaverous-white crucible of death – SnowWorld, Resort World Gentings’s all-year long winter land!

But a frozen, featureless attraction it was not! So at seven degrees Celcius, Indoo was thrilled to literally chill in the landscape that featured facades of an English tea shop, Italian pizzeria, a French bakery and igloos. Wanting to do more than just listen to the crunch and crackle of snow under her feet, Indoo and friends jumped at the chance to do the perfect run - the toboggan slide down the snow-covered slope.

“I vividly remembered being here when I was three. But after going there again I felt like I was reliving that moment. I closed myself in at the London Phone booth to keep warm. I didn’t build a snowman, but I did make snow balls. SnowWorld made up for the heat of Malaysia for me,” said Inddoo.

“I enjoyed myself. It was a very relaxing and exciting experience for me,” she said. “I got to step out of my comfort zone. Everything about this experience was magical, from the early morning mist to the late evening breeze. It was so much better than what I imagined it would be,” she said.

For Madhumitha Ann and Nuvashnee, the trip up to Genting marked a coming-of-age experience for them.

“I want to be independent but my mother says it’s not safe. This was my first trip out of school without my parents. I begged my mother to let me go as this is my first achievement (in winning a contest) and it was through my hard work. So she allowed me to go. I actually had to ask my grandparents to convince my mother to let me go,” said Madhumitha Ann, 14. What did she learn most from her trip here?

“Personally, I’ve learnt to mingle with other people. I felt very conscious that I was the youngest here and I was worried about talking to people who were older than me. But everyone on this trip was so nice and I felt comfortable,” she said.

For Nuvashnee, reading the newspaper certainly paid off.

“I read about the contest after my mother brought the newspaper home. I really wanted to win and this has been a one of a kind experience,” said the 15-year-old whose last visit to Resorts World Genting was in 2016.

“I’ve never been to this part of the resort with the shopping mall (Sky Avenue) and the indoor amusement centre. I would really like to come back to Genting with friends because with friends, you can go on all the rides but with family members, some might not want to go on certain rides. But I think I would have to wait until I am 17 before my mother lets me go with friends,” she laughed.

What did Nuvashnee learn from the trip out?

“My mother usually wakes me up in the morning and folds my worn clothes. Now I have to do this on my own!”

Nur Qashrina, 17, was thankful that Star-NiE (Newspaper-in-Education) and Genting Malaysia Berhad organised and sponsored the Slogan Slinger contest.

“It was such an enjoyable trip. My favourite part of the trip was at SnowWorld and Zombie Outbreak. I had fun with my new friends and I got to experience amazing, fun things (to do) in Genting Highlands. Not only that, the view here is relaxing and the weather here is refreshing. I feel so lucky to be chosen as a winner for this contest,” Nur Qashrina explained.

Being a gamer herself, Nur Qashrina enjoyed her virtual gaming experience located at Vision City Arcade that houses 270 units of arcade games along with redemption games and kiddy rides.

“SpaceTime Squad was my first ever VR (Virtual Reality) game. Usually I can get motion sickness when playing VR but I really enjoyed the game and I didn’t feel giddy at all. That game is awesome and I would like to play it again.”

Nurul Aleefa, 14, said that this trip met with her expectations “of everything being fun!” An ardent gamer as well, Nurul Aleefa too cited the Vision City Arcade as the most exciting activity on this trip. And it was an added bonus that she found gaming partners in Clarisse and Inddoo.

“I enjoyed Star Wars and the Claw machines,” she said after having spent most of her 50 free credits courtesy of Resorts World Genting on these games. Having taken a cable car ride with her mother and brother just a weekend prior to the trip, Nurul Aleefa said that she “really enjoyed” this trip up as there were many more activities packed into the weekend.

It was a short and sweet outing but Nurul Aleefa summed it all up: “I wish I could do it all over again!”

And with that, the goal of bonding seven teenagers with varied interests was achieved, thanks to Resort World Genting that had something to offer everyone.


Source from: https://www.thestar.com.my/news/education/2018/07/22/genting-getaway-for-a-perfect-bonding-session/#LhccQeoitk8w74aE.99

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