Miri

You will find below  topics we have selected from the most popular ones when moving to Miri. For all other subjects like spouse/partner employment, banking, staff employment, shopping or recreation clubs (and many more), please download our Inside Guide by registering you on the website. Once you are logged, visit our library and all the documents we have published about living in Miri.

Housing

Housing options for Shell Expats

On first arrival, transit housing is normally made available at the Marriott, Mciti Suites or Imperial Hotel depending on availability. You will be granted up to one month at one of these locations whilst you chose your permanent house.

The former Piasau Camp is no longer available. Newcomers will have to look on the open market. Currently most Shell expatriates are moving and staying on the Taman Bayshore housing estate, a gated community adjacent to the former Piasau Camp and close to SSB office. Another gated community is Prima Villa, where a smaller number of expatriates choose to live. There is a good variety of private houses available in Miri to suit individual family needs and help is offered to track them down, such as the Shell-appointed relocation agent.

Expatriate-Rented on the Open Market

Immediately adjacent to Piasau Camp, in the direction of the Shell offices is Taman Bayshore, a commercial housing area. These modern houses have been built recently and are part of a larger development plan. The Taman Bayshore area has 24-hour security.  

A cycle path connects Taman Bayshore with the Piasau Boat Club and recently, a nice landscape area with a small playground has been added.

There are a few phases of the houses being built in Taman Bayshore. The first and second phase houses come with two storeys but the later-phase houses come with three storeys. The two storey houses have a spacious living room with high ceilings, 4 bedrooms and  two bathrooms. One of the bedrooms is downstairs and there is also a small storeroom downstairs but there are no dedicated servant quarters. The three storey houses have a larger and more modern kitchen, 4 bedrooms, two bathrooms, an open space with balcony on the third floor. The garden is relatively small and minimalist.

For more information and pictures of houses in Taman Bayshore, go to the Photo Gallery.

Another option for housing is Mciti Suites. It is a serviced accommodation located close to the city center. It has shopping malls, medical center, recreation park and restaurants close by. Suite and Studio apartments are available depending on individual requirement. For more information visit Mciti Suites.

Other locations in Miri

There is a variety of houses available in Miri, ranging from high-rise apartment units to detached and semi-detached single and double storey bungalows and villas. There are very few condominiums and service apartments with extra facilities such as swimming pool, tennis courts etc.,

Accommodation is usually rented unfurnished although there are some fully furnished options and you may have to negotiate what stays and what goes. Even unfurnished accommodation generally comes with standard facilities like built-in cupboards/ wardrobes, ceiling fans, air conditioners, oven / fridge and a hot water system. Houses on the whole are sizable, with larger reception / living areas. Some people even find it difficult to fill the living areas with sufficient furniture, but sizes do vary widely. Most gardens are very small as houses are built to the maximum size on their "lot". Very few houses in Miri have a private swimming pool. There is usually a car porch large enough for 2 cars and most the properties are surrounded by a fence with a large front gate.

Distances are short in Miri but traffic is on the increase and short distances are starting to take more time. There are peak times linked to the local school hours, very early in the morning (before 7am), at lunchtime and around 3.30 - 4 pm. The decision on where to live is often based on where children go to school and how long it will take to get to work There are no really "naturally attractive housing areas" in Miri with the exception perhaps of Luak Bay. This neighbourhood is built along the coast, on a headland southwest of the city centre. It is however too far from the SSB Office, which is located to the northwest of the city centre, to be of real interest.


Most people working for Shell, Petronas and oil service companies rent accommodation in areas near Piasau. Residential areas such as Pujut, Krokop, Desa Seri (near the Boulevard shopping complex) and Lutong are very popular. Shops and other amenities are within a 10 minute drive from these locations.

Housing estates where houses are built in a similar style are becoming more popular, but it is still possible to rent a property in somewhat unique locations (e.g. next to a traditional Malay house or a run down wooden shack). When renting a house on the open market, you may want to check whether the neighbourhood you are interested in, has a neighbourhood security program, which is run by residents and otherwise known as "Rukun Tetangga". Most unfurnished houses are equipped with a number of security features like an alarm system, grills and an automatic gate. Have a look at Security and Safety in Miri for more details on these issues.

By international standards, housing and renting in Miri is still relatively cheap though finding your ideal location and going through the bargaining process can be a hassle. If not staying in Shell company accommodation, most people chose to rent for the duration of their stay in Miri.

Domestic Help

Whether living in town, Taman Bayshore or Prima Villa, an amah can be hired on a  live-in or part-time basis. Most people also employ a gardener or grass-cutter to take care of the garden. For more information, ask for our Inside Guide.

Health in Miri

Miri has a general hospital, a polyclinic,  private hospitals and more than 30 private medical and dental clinics. The Miri Red Crescent Society runs a Kidney Dialysis Centre, which caters for kidney patients. Miri is considered to be the medical service centre for the northern region of Sarawak. Shell also runs a medical service in Columbia Asia (Floor 2) that caters for all employees and their dependants.There is also a medical representative who will provide advice for general health information in the Piasau Camp which is run by volunteers.

The medical facilities listed here are representative of what is available in Miri. It is advisable to enquire about any treatment you are offered before you start, the Inside Guide (or Miri Information guide) can be consulted for a listing of practitioners in Miri.

For emergency medical situations, please contact BUPA directly for further advice.Full details of BUPA coverage for Shell IBAS expatriates can be found on the BUPA website  http://www.BUPA-intl.com  BUPA can be contacted to answer questions around individual cases or the coverage :E-mail:  shell@BUPA-intl.com
Telephone: +44 (0) 1273 718383  Fax: +44 (0) 1273 866577

Safety/Security

Safety and Security in Miri

In general Miri is a safe place.  However, it is sensible to take precautions, and be aware that there are pockets of need and deprivation here, so it is best not to flaunt your relative wealth. The section below is designed to help you if you are involved in an incident.

Reporting an Incident

If you wish to report an incident to the police, you need to go to the police station which has jurisdiction over the area in which the incident occurred. For example, if your handbag is stolen in Lutong, you need to go to the Lutong police station and not to the station in downtown Miri.   Lutong police station has jurisdiction over the area from the Lutong Air Strip to Kuala Baram. The Lutong River forms the boundary between the two station's jurisdiction.

You will have to give all the details of the incident to the investigating officer. If you want a copy of the report for an insurance claim, you pay a few Ringgits per report to have a copy typed. It is a good idea to pay and order a copy straight away. You will have to go back a few days later to pick it up.

Tips on home security

  • Keep doors locked at all times
  • Keep your outside lights on every night
  • Trees and bushes should be trimmed
  • Keep valuable personal belongings in a safe deposit box
  • Contractors/maintenance work at your house must be closely supervised
  • When maids bring visiting friends and relatives, ensure their identity is known to you
  • Report immediately (even in the middle of the night) security related incidents to Shell Security Control Centre at 453999 / 454999

When on leave

  • Stop all deliveries
  • Connect a light to a timer
  • Notify neighbour/friend
  • Ensure somebody is looking after your house from time to time and that they keep all doors and windows locked

 

Outpost Miri

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