Casa del Rio
88 Jalan Kota Laksamana, Malacca (06 289 6888/www.casadelrio-melaka.com). This luxurious hotel facing the Malacca River aesthetically pays tribute to Arabic, Portuguese and Dutch influences. The 66 rooms see a mix of Mediterranean design and Peranakan flourishes. Sup at the waterfront restaurant as the sun sets and watch the world go by. The two-bedroom suites are ideal for medium to large families.
Philea Resort & Spa
Lot 2940, Jalan Ayer Keroh, off Jalan Plaza Tol, Ayer Keroh (06 289 3399/ www.phileahotel.com.my). This resort could certainly do with some maintenance and TLC, but we’re still fans of the spa, the kids’ club and the hotel’s beautiful natural settings. Do take note of the following: The food here wavers between mediocre and bad, so if you have transport, venture beyond the hotel’s walls to sample Malacca’s culinary heritage. Furthermore, the resort uses buggies to help guests get around the resort grounds, but these can be difficult to procure; if you have young children, we recommend asking for a room near reception and the restaurants.