Uncovering the Jim Thompson mystery at the Cameron Highlands Resort
Back in July, I headed for a trip up in the hills for a little weekend fun with Cameron Highlands Resort. I was lucky enough to be a part of the resort’s annual event—The Jim Thompson Weekend—and it’s safe to say that I was stoked.
If you were to give me a choice between the beach or the hills, I’d choose the former every time. However, as we were still stuck in the heatwave then, I was looking forward to being up in the hills with the cool breeze. There’s just something about the sound of nature—leaves rustling, dew drops in the morning, and pitter-patters of raindrops—that’s quite comforting.
The Murder Mystery event may be the main attraction, but the weekend was filled with a variety of activities as soon as I stepped onto the resort grounds.
SOMETHING IN THE AIR
The ambience at the Cameron Highlands Resort was incredibly welcoming. From the concierge to the receptionist, everyone was so kind and welcomed me in (even though I felt it was rather obvious I was a little out of it because the journey up was unforgivingly filled with winding roads).
Perhaps there was also something about being up 1,500 metres above sea level, but I felt rejuvenated when I arrived. I was given a welcoming drink and a warm towel so that helped snap me out of the daze I was in.
Stepping into the Cameron Highlands Resort was like entering a time machine. The luxury boutique hotel captures nostalgia perfectly with its colonial design that’s prominent throughout the space. Its bespoke furnishings combine teak and silk—made from Jim Thompson’s finest quality fabrics, no less—to create an environment that’s gorgeous yet comfortable.
I could already feel the calming effects of nature as I was ushered to my room, and when I stepped in, I was in awe as it was incredibly spacious. At one end of the room was a large four-poster bed filled with soft cushions, and at the other end was a daybed—so I had the choice to lounge anywhere while reading a book, sipping on some tea, or just taking in the beautiful view of the golf course and lush green forest.
There’s no skimping on meals throughout my stay. After I freshened up, I headed back down to the Jim Thompson Tea Room for afternoon tea and was presented with a three-tier serving of pastries, sandwiches, and sweet treats. Of course, I had to dig into the freshly made scones first; each bite perfected with clotted cream and strawberry jam.
Dinner during the first night was a lovely outdoor affair at Gonbei. It was drizzling before so hotpot was a wonderful choice. The meal was complemented by the freshest local produce—vegetables, seafood, meats and noodles to dip into the simmering tom yum broth.
THE JIM THOMPSON TRAIL
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This trail is a Cameron Highlands Resort signature, where you’ll be taken on a journey by their resident naturalist. The day started at 9am and we were off to visit historical sites that are related to Jim Thompson—the Thai Silk King and prominent figure who disappeared in Cameron Highlands back in 1967.
Then we were off to the trail where Jim Thompson was seen walking along and uncovered a wide array of species of fauna, flora, fungi and insects. Do note that the trail goes quite uphill, so be sure to wear the right attire.
THE JIM THOMPSON MYSTERY EVENT
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Think Cluedo, but in real life. I remember growing up playing the board game all the time and lately have been into movies like Murder on the Orient Express and Knives Out, so being able to recreate a murder mystery event was quite the thrill.
A week before I stepped foot in the resort, I was given a character to play and tasks to do throughout the game. It’s an easy play, all you need to do is spread information and play your character well. It took place throughout dinner; think of it like gossiping with your family during reunions—the more you talk, the more information you get, and the better your chances of winning.
Forget what you know about the mystery behind Jim Thompson’s disappearance, in this story he was, unfortunately, murdered. That was the mystery we had to unfold—who murdered the famous Thai Silk King? And why?
Though I can’t reveal the end of the game (nobody likes spoilers, okay), it was fun seeing everyone get really into their characters and work hard to figure out the killer.
All-in-all, the weekend I had at the Cameron Highlands Resort was one for the books. I never thought I’d be taking part in a murder mystery event, because let’s face it, the acting I showed… yeah, I would’ve been nominated for the Razzies immediately. I thoroughly enjoyed every aspect of my stay; from the accommodation to the ambience, the food, and the company, it truly made for a weekend to remember.
For more information on the Cameron Highlands Resort and future events, visit their website here.
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