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Gaya Island Resort

Gaya Island Resort, Borneo

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Nestled on the largest of the islands that make up Tunku Abdul Marine Park, lies this luxurious sanctuary eco-resort, fringed by golden sands, verdant tropical rainforest and sheltered, colourful coral reefs. Chic hillside villas overlook the serene surroundings and offer peaceful accommodation to compliment the four restaurants, outdoor infinity pool and serene spa. Of course, the main appeal of a destination such as this (when you aren't relaxing on the stunning beach) is the wildlife and with an enticing array of naturalist-led activities, there is no shortage of opportunities to get up close and personal with the local wildlife, which includes quite a few cheeky monkeys, who will happily relieve you of your balcony belongings!

0845 1244455
Gaya Island Resort
  • rooms

    The elegant villas have been built to compliment the lush rainforest surrounds and offer plenty of contemporary space with a choice of spectacular view. The Bayu Villas are found at the lowest level within a tropical mangrove setting and have views of the pristine beach. The peaceful Canopy Villas are further up the hillside within the forest canopy and overlook the mangroves, while the furthest up are the Kinabulu Villas. These beautiful villas are a quite a trek (read workout) up the steep jungle hillside, but the breathtaking views over the South China Sea more than make up for it and you’ll really, really enjoy that cold glass of recovery wine.

  • facilities & activities

    With an emphasis on conservation programmes, the resort is perfectly positioned in this natural and pristine environment. Home to cheeky Probiscus monkeys, red flying squirrels, hornbills, mouse deers and a happy family of bearded pigs (often seen sauntering by the sea) the weekly activities menu is stuffed full of activities to see this unique island at its best. Choose from Guided Nature Walks, trekking through the Mangrove swamps or take to the water and enjoy kayaking, paddleboarding and snorkelling in the vibrant coral reefs. Finish off the day with sunset cruise and a movie under the stars. And if total relaxation is your thing, then have a dip in the pool and indulge in some yoga before heading to the tranquil spa to have a healing treatment based on the ancient traditions of the local people.

  • dining

    Regional dishes are prepared by skilled chefs and served up in a choice of four restaurants. Feast Village offers breakfast, lunch and dinner and a huge range of Japenese, Korean, Asian and Western fare against a stunning backdrop overlooking Mount Kinabalu and the beach. Fisherman’s Cove is slightly more sophisticated and offers a spectacular view from the rooftop and specializes in seafood dishes (min age 12). Omakase is nestled within ancient rainforest overlooking Malohom Bay and serves up welcoming Japanese dishes. The Pool Bar is a great stop for a sun downer and lighter dishes, overlooking the infinity pool and cabanas. Or if you fancy a change of scene, then Tavajun Bay is a private beach found just a 5 minute boat ride away. Enjoy a specially chosen dish cooked carefully over charcoal embers, or order a personalized gourmet picnic and settle in for the day.

    And if dining solo is more appealing, then have a picnic in your favourite spot or simply let it be delivered to you to enjoy on your own private veranda.

  • family

    Children of any age are welcome here and there is a children’s activity program. They’ll love the pool, the snorkelling and exciting wildlife explores through the jungle. The ocean is calm and shallow, perfect for families with smaller ones. And they will love making friends with the resident snuffling pigs.

    The villa bedroom are comfortable but don't have space for an extra bed - one child under 12 can share on a day bed on the end of the wooden platform for the king bed. However, if you have younger travellers in tow, make sure you ask for rooms on the lower levels as it’s quite a trek to the highest villas for small legs. 

    There are a few sets of connecting rooms (but not at Canopy level) which can be requested but not guaranteed at time of booking.  Further twin beds can only be provided in 'Hollywood' style ie side by side on the same base.

    All the restaurants welcome children and offer plenty of options, but Fisherman’s Village only allows those over the age of 12.

  • location

    Gaya Island is the largest of the five islands found just off Kota Kinabalu with Mount Kinabulu rising up in the distance. The island is a National Park, home to a diverse and protected array of flora, fauna and wildlife and makes a great stop off point. The closest airport is Kota Kinabalu and from there it’s a 10 minute taxi ride to Sutera Harbour Marina, before a 15 minute speed boat transfer to the smiling, welcoming staff on hand to assist you into the resort.

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