In The News 2003

Naturalist Par Excellence

Built like an American football player, Irshad Mobarak has commanding presence, but is really a gentle giant. For the past 12 years, he has presided as resident Naturalist at The Datai. This is Langkawi's most exclusive hotel, renowned for its architectural design which merges the built and natural environments so seamlessly it is difficult to know where one stops and the other begins. Irshad has extended this symbiosis to the hotel's guests.

The Arden Naturalist

Meet Irshad Mobarak, a consummate naturalist at the Datai, Langkawi, who delights in passing on his knowledge and skill to nature lovers.If changing the cat litter is the closest encounter you've had with animals, head for Langkawi. More specifically, head for the northern tip of the island where you are likely to find Irshad Mobarak.

Forest Trump

The brigadier's eyebrows went up and a smile crept across his face when I told him I was thinking of visiting the Langkawi archipelago, a group of more than 100 mainly uninhabited islands off the north western coast of the Malaysian peninsula. He said he'd just had his best‑ever holiday there, and advised me to stay at the Datai on Pulau Langkawi: "As a rest cure for the jaded it's a sure‑fire winner." We were talking in Hong Kong and as my advisor was Brigadier Christopher Hammerbeck CB, a tank commander in Gulf War and now executive director of the British Chamber of Commerce in Hong Kong, I reckoned that if he recommended somewhere I was ready and willing to obey.