Gaya Island Resort is a brand new five-star retreat where guests can discover Borneo’s golden sand beaches, spectacular underwater havens and untouched tropical rainforests.
Accessible only by boat, Gaya Island Resort in Borneo has sheltered coral reefs and protected mangroves that have been lovingly preserved for thousands of years. Situated along the coast of Malohom Bay, it forms a natural sanctuary in the hillside of an ancient rainforest with a stunning outline of Mount Kinabalu on the horizon.
Just off the coast of Kota Kinabalu on the shores of Pulau Gaya, the largest island in the Tunku Abdul Rahman Marine Park, Gaya Island Resort offers the perfect launching pad to explore Borneo. The country is home to many rare species, including the orangutan, the proboscis monkey and the pygmy elephant. The resort is easily accessible from Kota Kinabalu International Airport and a short 30-minute combined car and speedboat ride from the airport.
Away from home comforts
Ancient rainforest and protected mangroves surround Gaya Island Resort’s 121 stand alone villas set in the hills. Spacious, tactile and modern yet respectful of local Sabahan elements, each one uses local materials that blend harmoniously with the natural environment. Villa interiors are designed with a contemporary elegance and offer a variety of views including mangrove, canopy, tropical rainforest and the South China Sea.
Each 47m2 villa features a spacious bedroom, writing desk, safe box, flat screen television with satellite channels, large open bathroom with an oversized bathtub and two vanity units and an outdoor veranda with day beds. Gaya Island Resort itself incorporates elements of Sabahan architecture and contemporary design complete with modern amenities and WiFi capabilities.
There is also the Suria Suite, a highly luxurious 188m2 two-bedroom option set over two levels. It offers glorious uninterrupted views of the ocean and Mount Kinabalu from a large outdoor veranda with daybeds. The ground floor has a relaxing lounge area, private dining room, TV room, powder room and pantry that opens out on to an outdoor deck. Upstairs the two spacious bedrooms come with separate en suites, walk-in wardrobes and vanity areas. This haven of absolute luxury is completed by an outdoor bath that leads on to the suite’s private balcony.
At your leisure
There is a vast array of activities to satisfy each adventure, nature and water enthusiast while experiencing Sabah’s colourful culture. Activities available include canoeing, paddle surfing and jogging while creative guests can immerse themselves in intriguing classes such as weaving and beading, Rungus Tribe storytelling and Borneo cooking.
Guests can also rejuvenate with a traditional Borneo spa treatment, amidst the tranquillity of the ancient rainforest or meditate to the soothing sounds of the gentle lapping waves. Enjoy land and marine explorations such as scuba diving adventures, PADI open watercourse, island hopping, chartered snorkelling excursions with the marine biologist or a jungle safari with the resident naturalist and Mount Kinabalu expeditions.
For those who prefer a more indulgent holistic experience, the award-winning Spa Village offers treatments, therapies and healing practices specific to Borneo culture. Uniquely designed within a mangrove setting, it has six treatment rooms with outdoor decks and a yoga retreat space.
The resort offers a selection of dining options plus a pool bar lounge and a 50-metre infinity swimming pool which will provide the ideal place to relax while taking in the picturesque views of Mount Kinabalu from a stunning upper deck. The regional cuisine and exquisite fresh seafood prepared by the resort’s skilled chefs is a play on the senses, setting the stage for guests to recount the day’s adventures with family and friends, new and old. Be it dining at leisure on your personal veranda space in-villa or a picnic at your chosen nook or the simple pleasure of gathering around a crackling barbecue pit on the beach at dusk, these experiences form another facet of treasured memories to take home.
Escape to Tavajun Bay, a private enclave where guests will be able to luxuriate in the pristine aquamarine waters surrounded by the lush tropical rainforest.
Bed & breakfast in a Gaya Villa from approx £121 per person per night